29 July 2005

Microsoft-bashing week continues

I really don't intend to be bashing MS with such regular abandon - and it's just my first week. But another day and another few stories caught my interest.

First up: MS introduced "Genuine Advantage" this week - a way of ensuring that only valid copies of the OS receive updates. Within 24 hours apparently its been hacked and the simplicity is incredible.

Second: Which planet is Steve Ballmer on? Today I read that they are planning a "Premium" version of Office for which they will be able to charge yet more money (see earlier story this week over the worldwide cost of MS's monopoly). They don't know what features will be in it yet - just that they'll find a way to charge even more. It's already a MAJOR component of the price we pay for a new computer. And, it's already feature fat for 99% of users. At a time when OpenOffice and other's are homing in on this turf, this seems like the wrong direction to be heading.

Third: A lot of fuss about a Register article on IE7 in Vista Beta 1 not working with Yahoo and Google toolbars, which appears to be limited to only some people. It's certainly got the MS-defenders frothing, even if it is a bit of El Reg mischief. However, what I find funny is that the MS of old would CERTAINLY have done this. It is only now they wouldn't dare as they know the courts would come down on them heavily (well, at least ask them nicely after 3 years to make a parallel version of IE7 called something like IE7XT that costs the same, does less, and give people the choice to ignore it).

The combination of Ballmer and Allchin (see earlier this week) arrogance and the THREAT of monopoly suits are what is eventually going to remove MS as the über-dominant supplier. They are still at the top of the slippery slope, but they're on it.

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