[Beowulf] small-footprint MS WIn "MinWin"

Robert G. Brown rgb at phy.duke.edu
Tue Oct 30 07:03:32 EDT 2007


On Mon, 29 Oct 2007, drikis at lanet.lv wrote:

> I am not so optimistic. Microsoft can buy goverment of some small EU members...

Well, of course one of my major concerns with MS is that it can buy
critical parts of the government of the US as well, by donating money to
key candidates at election time.  I found in the newspapers reason to
believe that they impacted the Gore-Bush election in some critical
states, for example.  It is one of the many dangers of large
multinational monopolies.

Of course in the last two elections their influence is tiny compared to,
say, Big Oil, but there are obvious reasons for that.

Still, if one reads:

   http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_States_v._Microsoft

who can say that they didn't get their money's worth?

The Clinton administration sued.  Microsoft was caught openly perjuring
themselves, falsifying demonstrations, and generally treating the court
with contempt.  They lost big time, and were at serious risk of being
broken up like AT&T had been before.  I recall at the time open
speculation that if their software business was completely separated
from the operating system business, the new baby MS's might well be more
or less forced by the market to produce software that runs under both
Windows and Linux, that the OS side of the business might find
themselves needing to produce Microsoft Linux -- there was a lot of
optimism that it would level the playing field.

Then Bush won the election and promptly -- 9/6/01 -- announced that they
would no longer seek to break up Microsoft, and ultimately settled for a
"penalty" that was probably less than MS had been spending on legal
defense during the pre-trial phase anyway.

Still, recently MS has taken a number of actions that remind me of the
smile on the face of a crocodile.  They seem to be "for the public good"
in bizarre ways.  Playing (for Microsoft) relatively nice.  I keep
waiting for the other shoe to drop, given that they still have
high-level protection in the US marketplace; the only thing I can figure
is that Europe and possibly Asia are significantly pressuring them:
losing the half-billion Euros probably doesn't impact them at all, but
the other constraints established by the settlement may be.

    rgb

>
> Quoting "Robert G. Brown" <rgb at phy.duke.edu>:
>
>> On Mon, 22 Oct 2007, Geoff Jacobs wrote:
>>
>>> Everybody take a moment to remember how Windows NT was supposed to be an
>>> elegant, microkernel design.
>>>
>>> In other words, I have infinite faith in the marketing droids being able
>>> to screw this one, too.
>>
>> Good point, and maybe they will.  However, this time there is some
>> actual pressure not to.  I'm wondering if Microsoft isn't feeling the
>> burn some in Europe, where they seem to be far more aggressive than we
>> are here about regulating monopolistic behavior, a bit more willing to
>> mandate open source solutions.  Lot of money in Europe...
>>
>> Maybe, just maybe, they're starting to feel the burn here as well.
>>
>>     rgb
>>
>> --
>> Robert G. Brown
>> Duke University Dept. of Physics, Box 90305
>> Durham, N.C. 27708-0305
>> Phone(cell): 1-919-280-8443
>> Web: http://www.phy.duke.edu/~rgb
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-- 
Robert G. Brown
Duke University Dept. of Physics, Box 90305
Durham, N.C. 27708-0305
Phone(cell): 1-919-280-8443
Web: http://www.phy.duke.edu/~rgb
Lulu Bookstore: http://stores.lulu.com/store.php?fAcctID=877977
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