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Comment: Re:failure round 2 incoming (Score 1) 375

by Jason Earl (#42218155) Attached to: Microsoft Surface Struggles to Ship A Million Units

I agree. People don't care about Windows, they care about apps, and Microsoft definitely has the inside track when it comes to apps that people actually use.

However, Microsoft is several years late to this particular party, and it is not entirely clear that they can deliver. A tablet with a four hour battery life is not going to be acceptable in most workplace situations where tablets would be a nice fit. Windows RT does a much better job of this, but it does so essentially by sacrificing compatibility with Windows software. Enterprises are already deploying tablets, and in many cases they are already developing the software that they need to switch to tablets completely. The fact of the matter is that large businesses have been switching away from deploying applications on Windows for almost a decade now. Even in most Windows shops new applications get delivered in a web browser these days.

My original point is that Microsoft has gotten itself into a very precarious situation. There are millions of iPad users that now use the iPad as their primary computing device. They don't really want an expensive new tablet that runs their employer's CRM software (or whatever), but that doesn't run the iPad applications that they have come to know and love. What they really want are replacements for the last few pieces of Windows software that they are forced to use on a PC.

Worse, thanks to competition from Google Microsoft can't even fall back on its usual tactic of providing something almost as good as the market leader at a deep discount. Google scooped up that position in mobile several years ago.

Microsoft is in a tough spot, and it is going to take more than a me-too tablet that just happens to run Windows software to turn that around. I don't think that a $900 tablet with a four hour battery life has a chance in the market, even if it does run Windows programs. Obviously you disagree. On the bright side we will find out who is right in a month or so.

Comment: Re:failure round 2 incoming (Score 5, Insightful) 375

by Jason Earl (#42195415) Attached to: Microsoft Surface Struggles to Ship A Million Units

If they buy two of the Surface Pros then they will even have enough battery life for a standard workday (barely). That's bound to be good for Surface sales.

The reason that people are asking for iPad versions of software is that they have reached the tipping point where they use their iPad more than any other device. Instead of using the iPad for just a few things they now use it for *most* things, and they really want to be rid of Windows forever. A tablet version of Windows doesn't really help them, especially a tablet version of Windows that is missing most of the new tablet applications that they actually use now.

Comment: Re:FAIL ! (Score 1) 521

by Jason Earl (#41675705) Attached to: Microsoft Surface Pricing Goes Toe-to-Toe With Apple iPad

Microsoft used to be really good at price wars. I remember when MS Office wasn't king, and it definitely won on price. You could get the entire office suite for what it cost for either WordPerfect or Lotus 123. Windows Server also gained all of its marketshare on price.

of course, it is much harder to compete on price if you can't get your hardware partners to take a gamble making your hardware.

Comment: Re:"Could have led to..." (Score 1) 741

by Jason Earl (#38842941) Attached to: Man Who Downloaded Bomb Recipes Jailed For 2 Years

When was the last time someone killed someone with a "shopping list" of weapons, ammo, and combat gear?

If the Brits are fine with this sort of thing, that's all right with me. It's their country. However, I take at least some satisfaction in the thought that in the U.S. this guy would not be in trouble until the police actually tricked him into actually buying some of this stuff from one of their covert operatives.

Comment: Re:Unprofessionalism at its finest (Score 2) 316

by Jason Earl (#38730578) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Open Source vs Proprietary GIS Solution?

Both solutions are going to require custom programming. One of them chucks the existing (mostly working) solution, the other builds on the solution. That is a fairly substantial difference.

Heck, I could understand if the developers wanted to simply chuck MySQL and replace it with MS SQL Server (which apparently also works with Drupal). I personally would probably use the existing Drupal solution with PostgreSQL, but if the developers feel more comfortable with MS SQL Server I could see that being considered.

However, the developers aren't talking about moving to SQL Server to get them the database functions they need. They are talking about throwing away the existing solution completely and rewriting in DotNetNuke and MS SQL Server. That's just plain crazy unless the existing solution is worse than nothing at all, and the developers on staff have a spotless track record for delivering on time and under budget.

The universe seems neither benign nor hostile, merely indifferent. -- Sagan