I beg to differ

by Volker Weber

Someone said, Microsoft lost all the battles, but won the war. That could not be further from the truth. The war isn't over. Microsoft is still at war with the world. Bill does not want to be number one. He wants to be the only one. And he is not winning that war.

I don't care whether Microsoft won at a court. They won't be defeated there. They will be defeated by their only possible supporters, the people they are at war with: Their customers. Microsoft has made a ton of money. And they need more. Where could they get that from?

I am a happy Windows 2000 user. I like it a lot. Runs almost without problems here every day on three of my machines. But three machines are already converted to Linux. And this website runs on Linux. And my Jabber server. Most of the stuff that I use every day does not depend on Windows. Lotus Domino, or Mozilla, they run on different platforms. Movable Type, or MRTG, they need just Perl. ZOE and WebSphere run on Java. I have three Microsoft Office 2000 licenses, but I hardly use 5% of Word,2% of Excel and 1% of Powerpoint. That can be done with OpenOffice. Then there is Lotus Notes and Groove. They both depend on Windows. Notes also does Mac OS, which I don't have. Will Notes lock me into Windows? You bet, it will not. Groove? Nope.

There was a time when Microsoft simply built better products than the competition. And the world beat a path to their door. Now this door is locked, so that customers can't get out. Embrace and extend. They tried that with Java and failed. Now they try again with C# and will win new souls, no doubt about it. I know it is hard to grow when you already exterminated the competition. You can send the BSA, you can audit licenses. You can make sure that nobody leaves through the door. You can try to lock them all in.

But the world no longer beats a path to your door.

I have not switched to Windows XP, or Office XP, or an Xbox, a 'Windows' Phone, a 'Windows' PDA. Most of the people or enterprises I know have not. So what is next? I guess, the freedom to innovate. Let freedom ring.


I'm afraid I have no experience with it, but wouldn't Max OS X (Jaguar) be the way to go ?

Jan-Piet Mens, 2002-11-04

Mac OS X runs only on Macs. I don't have any. So there is no way for me to convert existing machines to Jaguar. Those upgrade from Windows 2000 to Linux.

That does not mean that I am not leaning to getting a Mac. They are nicely done, somewhat expensive, but still: a 12" iBook is not out of the question.

Then again: Why should I learn another system, get another set of applications?

Volker Weber, 2002-11-04

Well, my hardware setup very closely matches the one Volker is using. Now, while I'm for sure interested to have a look into Mac OS I simply can't convert my Intel based machines to that platform. And just buying a Mac to have a look? I guess, the answer to that is "No" at the moment. In addition, I'm doing most of my day to day work on a notebook running Linux and I have yet to find a reason to go back to Windows or "make the switch" to Mac OS. Linux does everything for me, I need. Which doesn't neccessarily mean that it will be equalliy fit for what your needs. And actually, I do agree that Linux isn't ready for the desktop of the general user - yet. This will change, rapidly. And maybe in 10 years or so, we'll see another monopoly in the OS market. Who knows? But until then, I guess I'm happy with Linux.Except maybe for my "play station" - the only machine that has to run Windows for obvious reasons :)

Stefan Rubner, 2002-11-04

I agree with both Volker & Stefan that we can't chuck it all and purchase Macs. The main reasons for my even suggesting Mac are 1) a Lotus Notes port which doesn't require Wine or some such on Linux (I currently rely a lot on a Notes client for my work and documentation), 2) the Un*x platform below that nice GUI and 3) the incredibly sexy-looking hardware :-)

I've been yearning to give it a try, becuase it just seems to be the "ideal" combination of software which makes a good workstation. Neither Windows (2K / XP) nor Linux currently cut it on a laptop. Just my EUR 0.02

Jan-Piet Mens, 2002-11-04

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