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It's funny.  Laugh. Microsoft

Through The Steve Ballmer Looking Glass 470

Posted by timothy
from the chortle dept.
Class Act Dynamo writes "I was browsing for a video clip I saw the other day, and I came across this clip from 15 years ago of Steve Ballmer pitching windows 1.0 in a television commercial. All I can say is WOW. Apparently, there was a big demand for integrating "LOTUS 1-2-3 with Miami Vice." You'll understand when you see the clip." Let it not be said that Microsoft has no sense of humor.
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Through The Steve Ballmer Looking Glass

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  • by TheKingAdrock (834418) on Sunday January 23, 2005 @10:43PM (#11452108)
    There are at least a dozen of these videos floating around, some starring Bill & Steve together. They were made for the amusement of the employees and played at the yearly company meetings.
  • This is old news ... (Score:4, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday January 23, 2005 @10:44PM (#11452120)
    I saw this vid about ten years ago. Ballmer didn't make it for use on TV -- it was shown at an internal Microsoft sales-team meeting. You know -- pump 'em up. Monkeyboy could do well selling used cars, methinks. Just the sort of person who can take a mediocre systems-software company and turn them into a globe-trotting monopoly.
  • Re:It all fits... (Score:5, Informative)

    by KevinKnSC (744603) * on Sunday January 23, 2005 @10:52PM (#11452194)
    Oh how I wish that was a false statment...I mean, it even goes along with the new goatse.

    First, for the people too terrified to follow that link, it is safe for work and will not burn your retinas like the original goatse. Second, those pictures aren't actually for Teen Beat, as claimed, but were promotional [snopes.com], in some weird alternate reality where that kind of thing could help promote your product.

  • Many years (Score:2, Informative)

    by northcat (827059) on Sunday January 23, 2005 @10:55PM (#11452224) Journal
    The video had been on that site for many years. So now that some random guy came across the video, he puts it on slashdot and it makes it to the front page. What's the need? Slashdot is a *news* site.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday January 23, 2005 @10:57PM (#11452233)
    ebaumsworld is huge. It probably has the bandwidth of slashdot or more. I would safely bet that more people visit ebaumsworld per day than slashdot, or at least that they use more bandwidth because all ebaumsworld does is host movies and larger such files.
  • by rsilvergun (571051) on Sunday January 23, 2005 @11:04PM (#11452274)
    the 1.0 release plays it just fine. Either that or the latest mplayer should be able to handle it. WMV's kind of a moving target, you've got to constantly update your software to play it....

    Oh, and Totem and xine use the same back end (xine-lib) so if one can't play it, the other won't (unless you've got something screwy going on where they're using different library paths). Just a heads up....
  • Re:It all fits... (Score:5, Informative)

    by enosys (705759) on Sunday January 23, 2005 @11:08PM (#11452307) Homepage
    Regarding that picture [monkeymethods.org]: you should check what Snopes [snopes.com] has to say on it:

    These images are actually publicity photos taken of the then 30-year-old Bill Gates coincident with the initial release of Microsoft Windows in 1985. The Corbis photo archive identifies their depiction thusly: "Bill Gates, CEO of Microsoft, reclines on his desk in his office soon after the release of Windows 1.0. 1985 Bellevue, Washington, USA."

  • Re:Many years (Score:3, Informative)

    by Detritus (11846) on Sunday January 23, 2005 @11:15PM (#11452358) Homepage
    Slashdot is a *news* site.

    That's what you think. You forgot "allegedly".

  • Re:Is this real?? (Score:3, Informative)

    by ocelotbob (173602) <ocelot AT ocelotbob DOT org> on Sunday January 23, 2005 @11:17PM (#11452385) Homepage
    I've got my doubts as to the legitimacy of the video, however, this could have been made for the tradeshow circuit, instead of the television circuit. Trade shows have been known to have slightly off-kilter advertisements in there, such as parodies of TV commercials, and this would fit in fairly nicely.
  • Re:Yes there is... (Score:2, Informative)

    by the_mad_poster (640772) <shattoc@adelphia.com> on Sunday January 23, 2005 @11:28PM (#11452445) Homepage Journal
    Actually, there are tens of thousands of worms and viruses out there. Several thousand unique worms and viruses (when you exclude variants).

    No, not all of them run on Windows, but most of them.
  • Re:It all fits... (Score:5, Informative)

    by QuaZar666 (164830) on Sunday January 23, 2005 @11:41PM (#11452505)
    I just tried calling it and it came back saying it is not a working number. :(
  • Triumph of the Nerds (Score:4, Informative)

    by Castaa (458419) * on Monday January 24, 2005 @12:06AM (#11452650) Homepage Journal
    If anyone hasn't seen Triumph of the Nerds by Cringely, I highly recommend seeing it. It's the best documentary about computing ever made. It offers a historic and insightful view of the people that created the personal computing industry. Cringely interviews everyone from Gates and Jobs to relative unknowns like the creator of the MITS Altair computer.

    What really makes it a great documentary is that it's as entertaining as it is interesting. Not an easy thing at all to do given the subject matter but Cringely pulls it off in spades.
  • Looking for win.com (Score:2, Informative)

    by tepples (727027) <tepples@g m a il.com> on Monday January 24, 2005 @12:29AM (#11452779) Homepage Journal

    You are correct about the wrapper, or "run-time". Excel 2.0 for Windows could boot from DOS, load the Windows 2.0 runtime, then itself.

    Every .exe file for 16-bit Windows had a short DOS stub. Some just printed "This program is designed for Microsoft Windows" or the like, but other, more sophisticated stubs looked for win.com somewhere on the PATH and started Windows if possible and fell back to the error message otherwise. I'm guessing that the smaller programs (such as winver, notepad, and calculator) used the short stub that just errored out, while larger programs used a larger stub. Eventually, as Windows 3.x became more widespread, more developers just linked their apps with the short stub out of laziness.

  • by Skim123 (3322) <mitchell@4guysfromrolla . c om> on Monday January 24, 2005 @01:21AM (#11453054) Homepage
    I believe that commerical has also been shown in the Microsoft Museum on Microsoft's campus. They have an old computer setup with Windows 1.0 that you can play with at their little museum. There are some nastolgic Windows 1.0 screenshots available, too [aci.com.pl].

    Anywho, I'm not surprised how the first feature they pimped was Lotus 1-2-3 support, as Lotus 1-2-3 was the "killer app" of the day. In fact, there are bugs in Excel that were put their purposely [asp.net] to allow for true Lotus 1-2-3 integration.

  • by rabtech (223758) on Monday January 24, 2005 @01:26AM (#11453067) Homepage
    progman.exe in Windows XP is just a stub to intercept DDE calls and process launches for Explorer, typically for older Windows 3.x programs that were written to depend upon its presence.

    The number of appcompat hacks, workarounds, et al is really very staggering. Linus has the benefit of just changing something and telling everyone to fuck off when their stuff breaks. Microsoft has paying customers that don't take kindly to the same sort of treatment.
  • Torrentspy.......... (Score:3, Informative)

    by afxgrin (208686) on Monday January 24, 2005 @01:35AM (#11453103)
    Yep - It's currently up on Torrentspy.com.

    I don't know who posted it, but it's there - not too many seeds though.
  • by betelgeuse68 (230611) on Monday January 24, 2005 @01:40AM (#11453122)
    Well Mitch Kapor founded Lotus. The individual (I forget his name) who did the coding (someone else entirely, Kapor was the business man) did it all in a very short period of time pretty much by himself. He was writing 1-2-3 in assembly language. Yes a concept that is hard to believe for many Slashdotters with all their talk of PHP, PERL, Python et al, but back then, writing desktop applications in assembly language was quite common and in fact a *NECESSITY*. Why? Because other programs were written in this manner manipulating the IBM PC's hardware directly. "Device drivers? MS-DOS APIs? What's that and why bother?" was often the viewpoint held during those times. Programs were significantly more zippy when the IBM PC's hardware was manipulated with hand written assembly. So much so that it was a business necessity... if you wanted to compete in the IBM PC software space. Otherwise your competitors had a major advantage over you - SPEED of the application.

    This is all hard to appreciate today given how powerful computers have become. Virtual machines? Not on your life, e.g., the UCSD P-Code system never caught on (the notion of virtual machines was pioneered at the U of California, San Diego):

    http://www.threedee.com/jcm/psystem/

    Why didn't it catch on? Simple, speed. The IBM PC had a 4.77 MHz 8088 processor and hand written/tuned assembly code creamed practically any program written in a high level language. In fact for years "PC Magazine" (which is still very much alive) would publish the assembly language listings to many of the MS-DOS utilities featured in its covers. Needless to say the idea of that magazine publishing assembly language listings today is quite laughable.

    -M
  • by spongman (182339) on Monday January 24, 2005 @01:43AM (#11453132)
    progman.exe in XP exists mainly to provide a DDE bridge so legacy programs' installers can put shortcuts in the start menu using the old (win3.1) API.
  • by ProdigySim (817093) on Monday January 24, 2005 @01:43AM (#11453135)
    http://albinoblacksheep.com/flash/sellswindows.php There's a flash version, which should work a bit better on linux than a WMV. Besides, Ebaumsworld is terrible >.>
  • by Spy Hunter (317220) on Monday January 24, 2005 @01:46AM (#11453144) Journal
    According to Alexa, ebaumsworld has a higher traffic ranking than Slashdot, at ~500 as opposed to ~1000. Furthermore, as the AC pointed out, it serves mostly multimedia files: flash, audio, and video. It uses *way* more bandwidth than Slashdot does.

    I've spent several hours perusing their collection of funny/shocking videos. Once you start, you find it hard to stop. Also a few of their celebrity prank calls are hilarious. Be sure to use Firefox, though. It's a rather shady site, and you're guaranteed to at least get millions of popups in IE, if not several spyware installations. If you use Firefox, you won't have problems.

  • Re:Yes there is... (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday January 24, 2005 @03:52AM (#11453573)
    How old are you? I ask because you appear to be blissfully ignorant of the hundreds of DOS boot-sector viruses which spread themselves around long before the widespread adoption of the Internet. Let's also not forgot the rash of Visual Basic macro viruses which were common for a short while back in the mid to late nineties. They didn't rely on a network to spread either.
  • by Spy Hunter (317220) on Monday January 24, 2005 @04:22AM (#11453690) Journal
    Alexa.com. That means that ebaumsworld.com is about the 500th most visited site on the Internet, and Slashdot is around the 1000th most visited. Look here. [alexa.com] It's a useful tool, as far as you want to trust their statistics (probably not too far).
  • Re:Yes there is... (Score:3, Informative)

    by gl4ss (559668) on Monday January 24, 2005 @04:57AM (#11453794) Homepage Journal
    windows wasn't an OS back then, just something that ran atop MS-DOS.

    the normal viruses of that day spread through boot sectors and piggybacking on dos programs - and were plentiful enough. there's no 'MAYBE' about it.

    ambulance...

    and are we talking about viruses or worms anyhow?

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday January 24, 2005 @05:18AM (#11453842)
    "Device drivers? MS-DOS APIs? What's that and why bother?"

    The "MS-DOS API" was basically an interrupt interface, programming in assembly is completely orthogonal to what API is used.


    Virtual machines? Not on your life,

    I don't think you have a very wide knowledge of VM options and their use throughout the years. Tight VM implementations using techniques like direct or indirect threading go clear back to hardware less powerful than an 8088, and they were used because for certain types of things a VM doesn't actually entail any overhead (This is because code is data. For a dynamic operation, you might substitute a number of procedural operations on data structures with a VM, where factoring and clever data encoding renders an extremely VM based implementation (This is a close cousin to the technique of generating self modifying code for things like blitting)).

    Anyway, the notion of virtual machines predates the UCSD P-Code system by many years. (If you are implying that VM implies byte code, well I don't agree (formally, the VM is an abstract model regardless of the code execution method used, many Java kiddies don't seem to learn this properly), but even then, the notion of "token threading" dates back to at least the late 60's).

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