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More on Longhorn 624

An anonymous reader writes "Everything I have read concering MS's future plans: Palladium, Client/Server tie in, Office 11 breaking backward compatability, 3 year licensing plans, product activation - all leave me with a foreboding sense of the potential synergy for furthering Microsoft's goals of complete domination. Now this article tells about Longhorn's new filesystem being based on the the future Yukon server. And surprise it will only work with new hardware, which they want to be Palladium enabled. And all pitched to you under the rubric of Security & Efficency. For years MS has been accused of only wanting people to run MS Software. Now according to the article, 'Microsoft doesn't think computer users should have to use one program to read and write a word-processing file, another to use a spreadsheet, and a third to correspond via e-mail. Rather, the company thinks, a single program should handle it all.' One program to rule them all, one program to bind them, indeed."
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  • by theefer ( 467185 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @08:40AM (#4783356) Homepage
    Please finish your quotes.
    • by cioxx ( 456323 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @09:02AM (#4783412) Homepage

      Three Rings for the Microsoft-Developers under the sky,
      Seven for the Dwarf-VPs in their halls of stone,
      Nine for IIS System Administrators doomed to die,
      One for Steve Ballmer on his dark throne
      In the land of Richmond where shadows lie.
      One Application to rule them all, One Palladium to authenticate them,
      On Application to bring them all and in the darkness bind them
      In the Land of Richmond where Shadows lie.

      • by marauder404 ( 553310 ) <marauder404@yah[ ]com ['oo.' in gap]> on Saturday November 30, 2002 @09:07AM (#4783424)
        In the Land of Richmond where Shadows lie.
        Richmond? Home of tobacco? I had no idea it was such an evil tech powerhouse! Perhaps you meant "Redmond?"
        • by cioxx ( 456323 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @09:09AM (#4783431) Homepage
          I put Richmond to avoid a lawsuit.
        • Tobacco is more evil than Microsoft, being the only industry which has been lying to its customers for longer and about something more serious than windows.

          Microsoft: The new version of windows will be faster, more stable, and more fun!

          Tobacco: Cigarettes are stylish, fun, and we don't know anything about them causing cancer, honest!

  • by pkplex ( 535744 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @08:41AM (#4783359) Homepage
    Its called emacs ;)
    • by napoleonin ( 548802 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @09:05AM (#4783421)
      Yeah, but it hasn't been done well
    • Re:Its been done (Score:3, Interesting)

      by deego ( 587575 )
      > Its called emacs ;)

      But seriously, even emacs allows you to selectively use any number of emacs applications. That is preciesely what makes it 'many programs', and that is what makes gnu/linux so secure---there may be a million bugs in the sunm total of the vast number of packages, but most users use only a very small number of those packages -- and the important core components are rock solid secure.

      With M$, it is precisely this that is lacking. One program does everything, and you can't uninstall any "compenent" of the program.

      Heck, they even tied a web browser to the operating system itself.
  • A new hope? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by zephc ( 225327 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @08:45AM (#4783367)
    Help me Obee Ohess [], you're my only hope!
    • Not true.
      While you may want to discount Linux, it has a lot more support and momentum than any sort of reimplementation of BeOS. Whatever sort of technological advantage you see in BeOS isn't really the point at this time, for the short term, we need something to rally around while getting the long-term message out: "The operating system doesn't matter as long as the concern is to follow open standards and make the overall goal to be interoperable rather than acheive dominance".
      Getting Linux, or a BSD, or a BeOS workalike to take the place of windows doesn't really solve the overall problem that computing can't be simplified into a one-size-fits-all situation. A better situation is to aim for at least source-compatibility where possible (binary compatibility is nice, but largely unreasonable to expect any compatibilty layer to account for all quirks of the original host OS). If you can manage that, then things like UI become relatively easy (application framework differences are picked up at the library level, install the necessary libs and you can pick and choose your favorite, or combination thereof).
  • Scary quote (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Mnemia ( 218659 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @08:45AM (#4783371)
    "This could bring a higher level of security than anything we've ever seen. It will almost completely prevent the platform from being compromised."

    I sure hope he isn't talking about security in general, because I sincerely doubt that Palladium will yield any kind of increased security other than security for MS's bottom line. The ignorance of that statement is astounding. Even if Palladium-esque code signing does increase security the added complexity is sure to keep the security people busy for years to come.

    • Re:Scary quote (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Ibag ( 101144 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @09:03AM (#4783415)
      Yes, I did find that quote to be rather interesting. However, I thought the lines right before it were more profound.

      "...the new design is required to harness the increased security features of Longhorn, which Enderle said are embodied in Microsoft's "Palladium"-branded trustworthy-computing initiative.

      It would seem that Microsoft cannot write a secure OS, so they are forced to rely on hardware.

      "Neither Linux nor Unix ties the operating system to hardware," he said.
      The way he puts it, you'd almost think it was a good thing.
      • Re:Scary quote (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Znork ( 31774 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @11:08AM (#4783744)
        You mistake 'security for the user' with 'security from the user'. Palladium is about protecting Microsoft, software on the users computer and media on the users computer from the user.

        A secure OS in that context is impossible to write; control over the hardware equals control of the contents on the computer, so they shouldnt really be criticised for being unable to implement that without hardware support. It will never be entirely successful but they can push the barrier for copying to such levels that you need to be able to buy your own CPU manufacturing run to be able to backup any data you want on your computer.

        A secure OS in the context of preventing access for intruders is far more possible of course. That they cant do that has been obvious for decades.
    • Re:Scary quote (Score:3, Insightful)

      by marauder404 ( 553310 )
      Sorry, but what exactly are you criticizing? You're remarking a quote that was made by an analyst, quoted in an article that's based largely on rumor and the best guesses -- Microsoft hasn't provided any real information in the article. The quote itself is so vague and out of context, that it's nearly impossible to ascertain anything yet.
      • Re:Scary quote (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Mnemia ( 218659 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @11:37AM (#4783829)

        yeah, it really is a rumor-mongering article. What disturbed me most about that quote was the attitude of the analyst, not so much MS' plans. I doubt that MS really thinks that Palladium will solve all their security problems; but that's how they are planning to sell it to the managment types. They've simply decided that thanks to all the "terrorism" uproar coupled with increasing criticism of their own track record, that security is an excellent marketing point to use these days. They are going to use talk of threats to enact hardware enforced DRM while at the same time selling this as a "security" feature to those who don't know better.

        What I was criticizing was the wholesale manner in which the analyst appears to have bought into that marketing strategy. I'm disturbed that someone who could be my boss may be reading reports like that and believing them.

    • Re:Scary quote (Score:3, Insightful)

      Remember that in the end, security is as strong as the weakest link in the chain, usually the user. A common 14 year old AOL script kiddie who faithfully opens his pr0n.jpg.vb email attachments while using various "security tools" found on various "security related" sites (read: Trojans. Lots of Trojans.) can turn even an OpenBSD box into an insecurity-ridden deathtrap.

      • Re:Scary quote (Score:5, Interesting)

        by pesc ( 147035 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @10:36AM (#4783647)
        A common 14 year old AOL script kiddie who faithfully opens his pr0n.jpg.vb email attachments while using various "security tools" found on various "security related" sites (read: Trojans. Lots of Trojans.) can turn even an OpenBSD box into an insecurity-ridden deathtrap.

        The difference is that I can give my 14-year old script kiddie son a non-root account on my BSD box, and be quite certain that he does not mess with my OS installation. He can only damage his own account, which I can restore. Try that with W*nd*ws!
    • Re:Scary quote (Score:5, Insightful)

      by sjames ( 1099 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @10:45AM (#4783681) Homepage Journal

      Perhaps it will help to fill in the hidden blanks in the sentence:

      "This could bring a higher level of security than anything we've ever seen. It will almost completely prevent the platform from being compromised. [By the owner. MS, content providers and 12 year olds from countries you've never heard of will be free to walk all over it as usual]"

      There, that makes a lot more sense.

    • by sterno ( 16320 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @03:35PM (#4784601) Homepage
      Microsoft recently demonstrated how flawed reliance on signed software can be. They had a bug in an Active X control, and they released a fix for it, but since both the flawed and fixed versions were signed and trusted by Microsoft, a malicious site could push the bad version back onto somebody's computer.

      Code signing establishes identity of the signer, but it does not guarantee anything beyond that. It says, "we really think this was made by Microsoft, so if you trust them, you can trust this." Palladium may extend this trust into the hardware, but it's still reliant on the assumption that whoever signed the code is doing their homework.

      There are four levels of security for software in my mind:

      1) Code that is from an unverified source that I cannot look at

      2) Code that is from a verified source that I can look at

      3) Code from an unverified source that I can look at

      4) Code from a verified source that I can look at

      Ultimately any code falling into category 3 or 4 can be made secure presuming that I am knolwedgeable about security and the software I'm dealing with. Category four provides the same assurances as category two, but additionally I can further insure my security by looking myself.

  • by Xpilot ( 117961 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @08:49AM (#4783379) Homepage
    One OS to rule them all,
    One Passport to find them,
    One OS to bring them all,
    And with the EULA bind them!

    Sorry couldn't resist ;)
  • Moron (Score:5, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday November 30, 2002 @08:50AM (#4783382)

    "This could bring a higher level of security than anything we've ever seen. It will almost completely prevent the platform from being compromised."

    Sounds like they will be releasing Longhorn without any networking capabilities..
  • by bockman ( 104837 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @08:54AM (#4783387)
    I believe there is already a program that run everything on my computer : it is called "Operating System". It just happens to use modules, called "applications" to perform the different tasks I want to do with my PC.

    Kidding aside, the idea of hiding to the final user the application layer may be a good one. If this was done openly (i.e. documenting the API that each class of applications should have and allowing administrators to switch one application with another, from a different vendor, without troubles), could be a good step to make computers easier to use.

    Knowing Microsoft, however ...

    • by Gumber ( 17306 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @02:18PM (#4784364) Homepage
      The desire to move away from application centric computing is an old one. Apple put a lot of money into their failed document-centric computing technology (OpenDoc). That it failed doesn't necesarrily mean that we can't do better than the current computing paradigm.

      I will give Microsoft credit for trying something new, they haven't done much of it to this point, and god knows, computers suck, they need all the help they can get.

  • by DarkHelmet ( 120004 ) <mark@seventhc[ ] ['ycl' in gap]> on Saturday November 30, 2002 @08:56AM (#4783396) Homepage
    We're Sorry:

    The software that you're trying to run (Doom3.exe) is not compatable with current Microsoft Standards. We at Microsoft believe that one program should "Do it all", and therefore should be integrated into the Operating System's kernel.

    The integrated version of Doom3.exe will appear in your kernel once the authors of said file adapt the program for use with Direct3d.

    Installation of OpenGL or any software that uses OpenGL is in direct violation of your EULA. Violation of said EULA will be severely punished.
    Thank you for using Longhorn. There are 15 days remaining until Skynet becomes self-aware. Your extra CPU-cycles are appreciated, even if required.

  • BeFS (Score:3, Informative)

    by bradams ( 241228 ) <slashdot1&mynetpad,com> on Saturday November 30, 2002 @08:56AM (#4783399) Homepage
    ...the new file system will also function efficiently with hard drives holding at least one terabyte of data...

    Creating such a file system is an extraordinarily difficult task, one that has been attempted for years by database companies, including Microsoft, but that has never reached fruition.

    The BFS used in BeOS uses 64 bit addressing (18 exabytes) and has been working for over 5 years...
    • Re:BeFS (Score:3, Interesting)

      by xigxag ( 167441 )
      Hold on, there's a bit of injudicious editing in the parent. The article wasn't implying that large volume addressing was an extraordinarily difficult task, it was saying that a fast filesystem with a large address space and relational database properties was difficult. (The example given mentioned being able to swiftly locate a document by content.)
  • by GnomeKing ( 564248 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @08:58AM (#4783402)
    Rather, the company thinks, a single program should handle it all ...master of none

    But seriously, isnt that what joe consumer wants? Something which IS jack of all trades but master of none

    Word and excel are both more complicated than joe consumer wants - so what their trying to do is ressurect MS works and shove outlook and MSN messenger in there aswell?

    That seems to me like it would really appeal to the OEMS, so thats what joe's gonna get...
  • Oh please! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Otis_INF ( 130595 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @08:58AM (#4783404) Homepage
    Since when are 'leaked rumours' (!) news, based on facts? Here we have an article which bases conclusions (!) on rumours.

    Ok, not that the conclusions are then worth anything, but still some remarkable opinions are ventilated in the article, even when you take into account the conclusion-based-on-rumour factor.

    For example:
    "Neither Linux nor Unix ties the operating system to hardware," he said.
    Come again? We're talking about a new PCI architecture here, not about a new soundcard!. And since when can I install AIX or HP-UX on ANY i386 system? Ever installed Solaris for Intel on an Intel machine you also happen to use as a workstation (f.e. with Linux on another partition?). The 'he' person definitely doesn't have a clue whatsoever about tying an OS to hardware. It's in all situations very important the OS works flawlessly with the hardware it's installed on, so yes, every OS is tied to a subset of available hardware. Big deal.

    Ok, then we move on to:
    "I'd like to see Microsoft act like the operating-system leader it is, not promising scores of new features or letting rumors fly but stepping forward and saying, 'We will have X, Y and Z features and not A, B and C,' " he said. "That would be leadership, especially when so many people are dependent on you."
    WTF is the 'he' person to ask for this? First he throws in the rumours no-one confirmed as being true (the article clearly states MS didn't say a word about any detail concerning Longhorn) and then he wants MS to clear the sky for him about the rumours and to step forward about any featureset they'll implement in an OS which isn't even in Alpha-stadium nor a releasedate has been set.

    Like Linus is going to talk about features in the 3.2 kernel, released somewhere in Q4 2004, "because so many people are dependent on you.". Sure...
  • by mrFur ( 413277 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @08:59AM (#4783406)
    I'm all in favour of keeping a paranoid eye open to the workings or Redmond, but it might be a bit early to start declaring the closing proximity of the sky. My favourite /. quote is the one about Bill being just a monacle and a Persian cat away from being a Bond bad guy.

    The 'database' file system is not new (and many on /. have been calling for a Be-like fs). An 'all-in-one' office application? It's an interesting challenge, but based on XML, feasable.

    Keep in mind though, that this type of pitch is being made to the corporate IS types. Stories like this are 'leaked' to help test the waters. The money just isn't out there any more for the latest bleeding edge operating system and Office upgrades. In order to pry the dollars out of corporate boards these days, you have to show real value, and the IT types these days only know one way to count (with their socks on that is), and that is the magical phrase "TCO". You can guarantee that the M$ marketing types will be selling the reduced training costs of the one-application scheme.

    Maybe though, before completely calling it a waste of code, we can judge the ideas on their technical merits and make fun of the marketing slime later? Of course, if your just interested in getting the story posted, keep the chicken little act up ;)
  • by cyber_rigger ( 527103 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @09:00AM (#4783407) Homepage Journal

    I think Microsoft will fork itself to death.

    The general rule that I see nowdays
    is that people still use Microsoft
    for its backwards compatability

    not its new features.
    • by marauder404 ( 553310 ) <marauder404@yah[ ]com ['oo.' in gap]> on Saturday November 30, 2002 @09:57AM (#4783534)
      Actually, I think that the number one reason people (average consumers) stay with Microsoft is not for it's backwards compatability, but rather backwards familiarity, which is a subtle difference. They sort of go hand-in-hand. People like the way they do things and don't like to change. They've become familiar with the Windows concepts, as old as they are. They've come to understand a C: drive, a Start menu, a registry, Windows Install/Uninstall, and all the other associated terminology. Confusion comes in when you replace those things with a /usr directory, a different icon, an /etc directory full of text files, and RPMs. They're just as easy for power users, but there's HUGE user backlash when such fundamental interfaces are changed. Application backwards compatability is a necessary, but not complete, requirement for most users. An open-source word processor might be able to open and save MS Word documents, but if they need to use different icons, keyboard shortcuts, menus, and dialogs to do the same things as MS Word, they won't use it.
      • by purrpurrpussy ( 445892 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @11:12AM (#4783760)
        This just isn't true! I've been using Windows since 2.0 and there weren't that many users - most people stuck to MSDOS. Slowly people picked on Windows and by 3.0/3.1 there was a big pickup. There was a BIG change in 95 and a lot of people took that up. Most people thought it was for the best. This "evolved" for a while. Now there is the "XP" feel. This is starting to slay users. All the icons are different in XP. It confused the hell out of me and I still don't like it much. MS _Keeps_ changing. They feel they have to to sell anything new but users get really confused with ALL this Windows crap and forever changing Office GUIs.

        The number one reason that _users_ are using windows is that when you go to the shops to buy a PC you don't get much choice and if you even asked about the software the sales people would become very confused and wonder what you were on about.

        The PC was never supposed to be a home computer OR an office computer. It shows this and so does windows.
  • by Freston Youseff ( 628628 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @09:02AM (#4783414) Homepage Journal
    Microsoft One Window(TM) is the only window you'll ever need to look through. It provides you with a view of everything in the world. Microsoft One Window(TM) knows all. Microsoft One Window(TM) shows you only what you want to see. Microsoft One Window(TM) is GOD.
  • Choice quote (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Rogerborg ( 306625 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @09:17AM (#4783449) Homepage
    • "Neither Linux nor Unix ties the operating system to hardware," [Enderle] said.

    I had to read this twice to realise that Enderle means that in a negative way. Dear god. The individual words make sense, but we're clearly not speaking the same language.

    This just confirms that Microsoft's vision for future PC's really is nothing more than super-X-boxen, running only Microsoft apps. Or, app singular. And if there's a single app handling everything, it has to handle everything, so is there room for any third party software?

    Further, given that the X-box is Microsoft branded right now, I wonder when Dell et al will start to wonder if Microsoft will be happy with trusting third parties to build their new toy. After all, it's all about trust, right? At what point will Microsoft decide - and start telling Joe Public - that a "Microsoft PC" is more trustworthy than an identical box built by Dell?

    • Re:Choice quote (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Spoing ( 152917 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @12:55PM (#4784051) Homepage
      At what point will Microsoft decide - and start telling Joe Public - that a "Microsoft PC" is more trustworthy than an identical box built by Dell?

      They're doing the work now make that a possibility. For example, Microsoft is selling network equipment now. It's very cheap stuff, but it's another cog making the "Microsoft PC" a reality. As I mentioned before, Microsoft is very motivated to do something like this -- they've already gobbled up almost all there is to eat;

      1. Microsoft's revenue from existing sources is tapped. While they make a substantial amount of money, they aren't increasing (all things considered).
      2. The recient spike was due to the licencing change that boiled down to "pay us more now, or pay us a lot more later". Even monopolies can push thier customers so far.

        So, where to go? Buy other unrelated companies? Check. Branch out into new markets (MSNBC, Xbox)? Check. Take new markets from established companies (AOL)? Check.

        All I see that's left is to increase investments in unrelated companies and markets, or to take more of what they know -- PCs.

        For PCs, it might take 5 years to get all the pieces together. Microsoft has the time, they have the money comming in, they don't have to do actual production, though they do have to keep an eye out for some companies to buy.

        The obvious choice -- and obviously we should beware of people who use words like 'obvious' :) -- is for them to save money and wait to see what companies have the critical patents or hardware that will be important in 5 years. When it's safe, buy those companies, integrate thier product lines, promote "PC 2006" (that use those patents), and then go from there. Sell the MS PC line like Apple and Sun do, but also licence others to be resellers like they do with Pocket PC/WinCE.

        If I see this as a posibility, companies that have traditionally been partners with Microsoft must see this too. Sony has already been burnt (Xbox), and just about every other large company -- from Sun through IBM-HP-Compaq-Gateway-Dell to even Intel just don't like an all-dominate Microsoft calling the shots and setting thier margins.

        To save money, Microsoft only has to not issue dividends to stock holders (check), and if needed, roll that money into some other venture so that profits vanish. In 5~ years they can dump the hold over companies and use the cash to buy the critical companies.

        Research and patents -- buying or making -- can be done anytime. This includes slowly inforcing the patents they have, piece by piece.

        This is all speculation and guessing about the future. Before you take it seriously, go to a used book store or library and flip through books that talked about what the future would be like -- lots of grins.

    • "Honey, let's try not to use any spreadsheet this month, the bill last time was really ridiculous, I added minutes to our word processor so you can finish your resume. I swear if little johnny leaves PowerPoint open overnight again I'll wring his geeky neck, that last bill was $470!" - A Microsoft Dream
  • by melonman ( 608440 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @09:31AM (#4783479) Journal

    I think some people posting on this topic have spent too much time watching the X files. It's only an operating system guys, and, if it is as radically different to previous versions of Windows as is claimed in the article, it is going to have to compete not only with Linux and friends, but also with W2k and XP.

    So if it really does offer something fundamentally new and useful that outweighs the disadvantages of DRM, people might buy new hardware and switch. If not, they won't. And even if the new OS is a runaway success, it will have to talk to W2K, XP and Un*x servers or it just won't work on the current Internet.

    In other words, if things pan out as stated in the article (which is by no means certain), Windows 04 is going to have to compete without most of the advantages enjoyed by previous versions, so it should be a much more even fight between MS and OSS. And could it be that this is what has really got everyone spooked?

    • by bockman ( 104837 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @10:27AM (#4783621) is going to have to compete not only with Linux and friends, but also with W2k and XP.

      What if :

      • Microsoft discontinues W2k and XP: new PCs will come installed only with the new OS
      • software and media companies release DVD, CD & such so that only works with the new OS ( because of the equation "no freedoom == no piracy")
      Market works when there _is_ strong competition, the same competition that Microsoft killed in the last 20 years.Otherwise, market laws always reward the strongest, and guess who is it?
      • Microsoft discontinues W2k and XP: new PCs will come installed only with the new OS

        In that case

        • faced with having to retrain their staff and upgrade their hardware anyway, and being less than happy at being forced to do so by Microsoft, companies will look at the other options, and a fair number will realise that the alternatives are better.
        • There will be a huge market for non-knobbled PCs and software to run on them in the developing world, China, Russia and anywhere where people don't currently pay for MS licences anyway. This will produce a glut of cheap and powerful 'Made in China' PCs which will provide serious competition to the expensive knobbled PCs

        CDs only work with new OS

        They are doing this sort of thing already, so nothing changes with the next version of Windows. If that business model works, they will gain market share, if it doesn't, they will rapidly find another model.

        no competition

        Microsoft's record on killing competition is actually rather patchy. They have cleaned up in the desktop OS and office productivity markets. They don't own the server market, they don't dominate embedded appliances, they are struggling to make the XBox work: all these ventures are losing money, which they can only afford to lose because of their market share in the first two areas.

        If corporate customers start boycotting the new OS, Microsoft will back down very quickly, monopoly or no monopoly. The main reason we are still waiting for XP server is that there is resistance to the licencing model: this new system could provoke a much bigger backlash.

    • by abe ferlman ( 205607 ) <> on Saturday November 30, 2002 @10:43AM (#4783669) Homepage Journal
      or even the medium term view. If win9x is competing with win04, what do you do? Two things:

      1. Stop fixing win95 problems when they pop up (yes they do pop up, as certain as the sun rising every day). Eventually retire the OS so that users of this ancient operating system become software renegades, but first make it even more difficult to use than it was when it first came out so that there won't be much fuss when it's eventually retired.

      2. Use those billions in the bank to pay a few companies to make software that requires features in newer versions of windows, i.e., not backwards-compatible with win98/ME any more. Microsoft has the money to play this waiting game, and they face no threat from the courts, so every day their influence grows. X-Files indeed- I think you're the one living in the imaginary world.

      You say it's just an operating system, why have I been *forced* to use it at every job I've had since at least 1997? They are a *monopoly* and they abuse their power in ways that make life miserable for the rest of us.

      • by melonman ( 608440 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @11:20AM (#4783782) Journal

        Stop fixing win95 problems

        It's a seven year-old product: why should they keep fixing it? If I post a bug in a seven year-old version of emacs to a newsgroup, I'm going to get flamed, and rightly so. In the case we are discussing, people could stop at XP, and MS's longstanding policy is to support the previous OS, so I wouldn't even start to worry until 2006-2008

        Not backwards compatible

        Is all the open source stuff released this year compatible with the original Linux kernel? Or even with the pre-version 2.4 kernel? Should it be? Would this make any sense whatsoever? I think MS's main problem is that they spent far too long trying to be too backwards compatible. Most OSS projects don't have this problem because they don't have a non-geek user base...

        Forced to use Windows in every job

        Nonsense, you just picked the wrong jobs. It's either a life and death issue or it isn't. If it is a life and death issue, make not using Windows the first criterion for choosing an employer and live with the consequences. If it isn't, take the money and stop complaining. I've never used Windows in any job at any point, which might be why I probably earn less than you do. I'm about to install W2K on one server, but that was my choice, no-one made me, and the reasons for doing so have more to do with the lamentable state of much OSS applications software than with Microsoft's monopoly.

        • "It's a seven year-old product: why should they keep fixing it?"

          Because Windows is not modular and not open source. You cannot upgrade individual components. You cannot fix a problem yourself. You must PAY for bugfixes (new versions of Windows), which means you'll probably have to buy new hardware too.

          "If I post a bug in a seven year-old version of emacs to a newsgroup, I'm going to get flamed, and rightly so."

          Upgrading from Emacs 1 to Emacs 21 doesn't require you to pay for anything (ok, except bandwidth costs) or upgrade your hardware. Upgrading from Win95 to XP does.
          You're comparing an application upgrade to an operating system upgrade.

          What about Linux kernel 2.0? Still being maintained. Or even 0.0.3! Still being maintained.

          "Is all the open source stuff released this year compatible with the original Linux kernel? Or even with the pre-version 2.4 kernel?"

          The original (0.0.3)? Not likely. Pre-2.4? Definitely! If you recompile OpenOffice/Mozilla/Gnome2/KDE3/whatever under RedHat 6.2 (with a 2.2 kernel), everything will work just fine.

          "Should it be? Would this make any sense whatsoever?"

          The software work under 2.2, so I guess it does make sense.
          • Windows is not modular

            Sure. So if modularity is what matters most to me, I don't buy Windows. But you don't have to spend a cent, you just have to take responsibility for your decisions. If you want the alleged benefits of Windows, you get the alleged problems of Windows. You can have both or neither. That doesn't seem unreasonable to me.

            You cannot fix a problem yourself.

            At the risk of blowing any geeky aura that I might somehow have acquired, I don't fix my Linux problems either, I wait for the next upgrade, and, usually, buy a boxed version that costs me money. We have fixed some minor quirks with the perl management scripts and Apache on our RaQ, but I'm not about to start recompiling my kernel with my own bug fixes. Which relegates me to the bottom 99.99% of computer users, though I guess having the possibility to do so is a unique selling point for the other 0.01%

            Everthing works with 2.2

            So why did anyone upgrade, if the new one does the same thing as the old one? I'm sure I'm missing something basic here, but I thought adding useful features, improving performance etc was a good thing, even if the resulting code won't always run on an abacus. In a similar vein, it's nice that you can still get i386 rpms, but if I can get better performance out of my kit with i686 rpms, I'm going to do so.

            OK, it's not quite the same thing, since the i386 ones will still do the same job. Although have you tried Star Office on a 486 with 20Mb of RAM? It runs, but the one time I tried it for a client, it took - literally - over an hour to open a blank document. I don't think this proves that Star Office is a bad program (although some other evidence points in that direction), it just shows that it is designed for more recent hardware.

            If what you're saying is that the upgrade path with Linux involves more smaller steps, I'd probably agree (although if you count service packs, MS produces several upgrades a year).

      • > Stop fixing win95 problems when they pop up
        They have - as of end of year it's no longer supported software.
  • by Newer Guy ( 520108 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @09:31AM (#4783480)
    Computer: Dave, this is Billcomp2010. You haven't completed your reading of my EULA, Dave. Dave: Bill can this wait? I'm doing a spacewalk now. Computer: Sorry Dave, my program and your life support will be terminated in 20 seconds. Dave: Noooo....(runs into airlock and begins pulling memory cards and hot swap drives) Computer: What are you doing Dave? Is that a Linux CD you have there Dave? I'm afraid, Dave. Dave: Pound sand, Bill!
  • by codepunk ( 167897 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @09:42AM (#4783504)
    Hardware purchases at my company go like this....

    COMPANY: Does it run linux?

    VENDOR: It will soon!

    COMPANY: Don't let the door hit you in the ass on the way out.

  • Holy crap! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Rhinobird ( 151521 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @09:42AM (#4783507) Homepage
    Dilbert is coming true. Remember the one where Dilbert is at the computer store and the saleman says something like "this computer only has 1 button and we push that for you before is leaves the factory".
    • The complete quote (the funniest part is missing):

      Salesman: ...but by far, this computer is our most user-friendly. The pre-installed software has only one button. And we press it before it leaves the factory.
      Dilbert: What does it do?
      Salesman: Whoa! I'm in over my head. Let me give you their tech support number.

      Source: Casual Day has gone too far.
      Gotta love it :D
  • Scary stuff ... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by fleppir ( 563959 ) <arnic&hi,is> on Saturday November 30, 2002 @09:42AM (#4783508) Homepage Journal
    ... but this must spell the final doom of M$. Even if the average consumer is a lemming, corporate entities must have the sense of seeing that this is akin to giving Bill control of their computers.

    I'd like to see Corporate America swallow that wad ...
  • by g4dget ( 579145 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @09:49AM (#4783517)
    Microsoft doesn't think computer users should have to use one program to read and write a word-processing file, another to use a spreadsheet, and a third to correspond via e-mail. Rather, the company thinks, a single program should handle it all.

    If Microsoft is going to put everything into a single program, presumably with loadable .NET-based components for extensible functionality, why did they just spend a decade moving towards a UNIX-like multi-process operating system? The NT/XP kernel and technologies like XML are redundant and inefficient for building that kind of system.

    What this tells me is that the company has no clue where they are going. Most of their technologies (NT/XP, C#/.NET, XML/SOAP, DRM, etc.) are "me-too" reactions to industry fads. And a few ideas are somewhat dated gee-whiz gearhead ideas that seem to pop up randomly out of their research organization ("database-as-filesystem", etc.). The only thing that is predictable is that Ballmer and Microsoft marketing will try to figure out how to sell that stuff to the public.

  • Yukon Good Idea (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Aaron M. Renn ( 539 ) <> on Saturday November 30, 2002 @09:54AM (#4783527) Homepage
    Microsoft is not the only one working on a filesystem that does (if I read the article right) what Yukon does. Vendors like Oracle are already doing something similar today. They realize that most content today exists as "unstructured" data (ie., not columns in relational database tables). They are enhancing their software to more easily handle unstructured data through the database. I actually think this can be a good thing: databases already can manage very huge amounts of data across multiple physical stores. This extends the concept to unstructure files. You can run SQL like operations against it, use enhanced indexing and search techniques, export the content easily using the built-in database access tools (WebDAV views and the like), etc. You get robust role based security, excellent logging/monitoring (which some people might think is a bad thing).

    I'll use Oracle as an example because I'm more familiar with it. When you store things like PowerPoints and the like into Oracle, through their products like InterMedia you can automatically do things like search for content insides of these "opaque" files (not just look for file names in a filesystem directory), automate metadata generation (e.g., width/heigh/color depth, etc for images), transcode from one format to another, etc. At this point, most of the capabilities I've seen are "toolkit" oriented. That is, they enable developers to build apps that take advantage of them but aren't necessarily suitable for use directly by end users. I believe all of is managed in this way, so check it out.

    If Yukon is basically doing a similar thing in extending SQL Server to support unstructured content well, this could very much be a good thing in terms of functionality.

    Also, don't be so quick to dismiss MS's security talk as just another way to take over the world. Obviously, these guys are very focused on market success and very focused on competition with GNU/Linux and free software. But they understand that in general security flaws have been a huge achilles heel for their products and they are doing a number of things top to bottom throughout their development process to really wring out security bugs and make more robust software. I can't reveal what most of this is due to non-disclosure, but from what I've seen MS are treating security very seriously and are focusing on the "security gap" in the same way they've focused on competitor functionality in the past.
  • by harlows_monkeys ( 106428 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @10:05AM (#4783552) Homepage
    The "one program" thing reminds me of early Mac, in a way. I don't mean in implementation, but in feel.

    I first noticed this back in 1985, when I bought my first Mac. On my Unix systems, the mindset is "I'm using programs to manipulate data". E.g., to change a file, I run vi (vim nowadays), and tell the program what changes I want made to the file, and the program makes the changes.

    On a Mac, it feels (or, rather, it used to...Apple has moved away from this) like I'm directly making the changes. I wasn't telling MacWrite to change my file--I was changing my file, using MacWrite as my tool.

    I think it felt this way because of the interface consistency among most programs. MacWrite might provide more editing options than, say, a paint program's text tool, but they were consistent. This made the programs feel like they were just part of the computer, rather than the focus of the computer like they are in Unix and Windows. The WYSIWYG aspect also certainly helped a lot.

    I think that this is what Microsoft is talking about when they say one program to do everything. I doubt they mean one giant monolithic uberprogram to do everything--they've spent years moving everything in site to be collections of components, and I don't think they'll abandon that approach.

  • by fallacy ( 302261 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @10:06AM (#4783556)
    Wait until Microsoft actually publishes what they plan to implement in Longhorn, rather than what some analysts predict the plan is...

    Will due respect (perhaps) to the analysts, the article reads more like a cute marketing ploy or extreme FUD: haven't Microsoft brought out enough drivel in those areas to warrant even more coming from unofficial/non-connected sources?
    I mean, please, when people are quoted as saying "Neither Linux nor Unix ties the operating system to hardware,...This could bring [for Windows] a higher level of security than anything we've ever seen. It will almost completely prevent the platform from being compromised." then exactly how much respect does the article warrant? Not only are the quotes lacking in true factual content, but the majority is damn right humourous (in the groaning sense)!

    [Disclaimer: I'm ranting at the article and its content, not the fact that it was submitted to /.]
  • by ProfMoriarty ( 518631 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @10:09AM (#4783564) Journal
    After reading the article, and others' comments ...

    Am I the only one who gets the image of Longhorn looking like Cartman's TrapperKeeper?

    You will be assimilated ...

  • by mrkurt ( 613936 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @10:46AM (#4783688) Journal

    Obviously, Longhorn is not going to come out as early as 2004-- the PI article is at least fair enough to quote another source who knows better than to believe the MS PR. Since the new OS is not likely to be out for another three years, this is a chance for the open source community to make its case to the public of why it should try its products.

    The first case for open source will be, "You don't have to give up your old computer!" We already know that Linux and other OSs can be installed on x86 hardware; it has to be easy to install, and it has to have all the other things that people are accustomed to having on their machines. Finally, it has to have programs that are compatible with common file formats, like MS Office. With OpenOffice, that last need has largely been fulfilled, where it comes to productivity.

    What would also be helpful is to pitch open source products to hardware manufacturers, as a way to sell more units. If not to the consumer market, then to the business market. Having Linux pre-installed on machines would make the transition to open source a lot easier for the enterprise. Of course, with Longhorn, the promise for the HW people is that they can sell a lot more units in the future with Longhorn. But, in the meantime, they may be struggling with machines that can only be loaded with warmed over versions of XP.

    The other thing that has to happen is that people need to be made aware of what DRM really represents. If you don't like MS having admin rights on your machine (as they do with the latest SPs on Win 2k and XP), you sure as hell won't like DRM-enabling Palladium. It's about freedom, and I think a simple slogan on a T-shirt to get this home could be: "DRM=Total Information Awareness". "Trusted Computing" is just a slogan, when the count on security patches for Windows and related products this year is 65; for open source, it's closer to 10. Which do you think is more "trustworthy"?

  • by bjtuna ( 70129 ) <.brian. .at.> on Saturday November 30, 2002 @10:53AM (#4783703) Homepage
    remember the old slogan from StarOffice, "Do Everything in One Place" ?

    Sounds a bit like that.
  • by LM741N ( 258038 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @10:55AM (#4783707)
    COM= "component object model"

    Programming the COM in Python led me to the realization that most MS programs are just wrappers for the COM. Thats why its so easy, for example, to embed Visio drawings in Powerpoint, etc, etc.

    BTW, with PythonWin you can access the MS COM directly without even starting a program. e.g. I've used the Excel functions to bring up a spreadsheet, fill it with data, and then save it, all without ever calling Excel.

  • Security? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by deego ( 587575 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @11:03AM (#4783731)
    MS's vision always seems to be a single application that handles EVERYTHING.

    The reason windoze has always been so vulnerable and will only get worse is precisely this.

    Yes, there may be more bugs that get announced in the total sum of the 100,000 GNU/Linux packages, but the point is that they can all be individually installed or upgraded or removed.

    M$ plans to introduce one program to handle everything. Seems to me their new 'security' emphasis is just plain incompatible with this 'one progrma to rule them all' dream.
  • giving up... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by sluggie ( 85265 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @11:11AM (#4783758)
    yeah, sometimes i think about giving up, just stop to argue.
    no more "where is my privacy?" no more "do my actions get monitored?".
    such things just make me weak, sometimes I really think that I will just lay back, accept microsofts way and be what they call a good user.

    They may monitor my actions, I don't care, I got nothing to hide.
    They may DRM the shit out of my PC, I don't care, I have the money to get my music legally.

    In return I get an all in one solutions. I don't have to care about, just use it. And if I stick to M$ rules, the usability is going to be great. Just think about the smartphone/tabletPC/workstation connectivity. May this is a revolution in computing.

    But somehow thinking like that feels like selling your sould to the devil. So what, Dr. Faust had a nice life too...

    So, what do you think is getting a nice user life by giving up your freedom an option?

  • Microsoft Works? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by theolein ( 316044 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @11:17AM (#4783771) Journal
    I have a programme on my laptop called Microsoft works, which seems to be a simplified version of what MS is planning. It has the most obnoxious, unintuitive interface that I have ever seen, cannot open MS' own Office files and has an Office 97 kind of toolbar floating across everything else that is so absolutely unuseful that I just wonder how or who managed to design something like that and get it past QA, if there is something like that in the MS sprawl.

    Personally I'm not that worried about this whole Palladium thing from MS. Windows XP has chiefly been successful because of MS' hammerlock on OEMs and because it has offered true improvements in stability over previous versions ofthe OS. I use XP every day and administer a number of XP machines and it truly has improved in stability. The flipside of the XP story is that I had to think twice before migrating there because the EULA is such a piece of capitaistic, fascist greed and fear. MS shoots itself in the foot with it's attempts to control your daily life, and in this they are truly a bunch of fucked up bastards.

    I think that MS' recent financial statements showing that they are totally useless and in fact worse than many dotbombs in every single division apart from Windows and Office, offer a good insight into the true source of motivation behind MS's efforts to enforce control over hardware and users: They realise full well that no one really likes them (OEM's trying to free themselves, large companies pissed off enough to migrate to Linux) and their response is to try to tighten the screws even more. Longhorn and Palladium might very well bring improved performance and stability, but like all MS products in recent years, these improvements are mainly a sugar coating to the bitter pill of MS Palladium.

    It will not work. My company does not have the money to play MS games and I will migrate everything to Linux and Novell (we already use both) beofre we go with bullshit like this. Larger companies are even more conservative than we are.

    The joke is that MS could gain so many new customers and much more trust (there are people who trust them?) if they spent more efforts on simply improving their products instead of trying to fuck with everybody.

    Privately I use MacOSX to develop with because the core OS is open source and the Dev tools are free and I'm fucked if I'm going to pay MS $1000 here in Switzerland for Visual Studio.
  • by nurb432 ( 527695 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @11:27AM (#4783792) Homepage Journal
    Then *we* can still run something else. But I fear that DRMized hardware will kill the alternative market as only an 'authorized' OS will run. And it wont be practical for anyone but the biggest to get authorized.

    If we reach that point and cant get around it somehow, I know myself will be finished with computers. Almost am now with how the industry has become.

    20 years ago, no one would have dreamed of what would become of it all, and the level it would reach... Makes one almost ashamed to be in the business.

  • by eyefish ( 324893 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @11:29AM (#4783803)
    I think Microsoft decided to go all the way with a full OS-Software-Hardware security solution without first asking the question "What are the sources of security problems on a computer?", to which 99% of the cases the answer would have to be (1) social engineering and (2) user's naiveness.

    By Social Engineering I refer to the oldest form of hacking: convince someone to do something for you on his/her machine. No hardware, software, or operating system can protect a user from this today.

    By user's naiveness I mean that most users (who naturally are not tech-savy) simply open every email attachment they get, or simply click on "yes" or "ok" on every pop up they see without first reading. Combine this with Social Engineering and I really don't see how Microsoft will stop the wave of attacks against windows machines.

    The only thing I have seen so far that works to a good degree is Java's sandbox model, where in a sense every program is an island unto itself, and if it wants to communicate with other programs it needs explicit permissions or use well-document open-standards-based protocols. However even this suffers from user's naiveness sindrome.

    Bottom line: Security is an EDUCATIONAL issue. Create awareness and teach people the basics of security (don't give your credit card number to ANYONE who calls you, don't open attachments from people you don't know, use an updated virus scanner, patch the latest discovered holes in your OS, use a firewall, etc), if we manage to do this (a daunting task), I think we can get MUCH farther in the security arena than instead taking all our freedom away in a completelly-controlled and restrictive environment.
  • by Veteran ( 203989 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @11:49AM (#4783861)
    Everybody out there is missing the big picture; Bill Gates' goal. What Bill Gates wants is to force everyone to change the rules; he wants to be the Wilt Chamberlain of the business world. To Wilt Chamberlain the proof of his own superiority was that he forced basketball to change its rules - he was so overwhelming that he left a permanent mark on the game.

    Bill Gates wants to force everyone to change the rules to deal with him and his company. Being the richest man who ever lived is not enough - like Montgomery Burns he'd "give it all up for just a little more". The little more that he wants is to be so oppressive and intrusive a part of people's lives that they are forced to change the law forever to control what he has done. He has already proven that existing monopoly laws are insufficient to keep him from doing as he pleases.

    He wants to be able to answer a tech call and say: "This is Bill Gates speaking; bark like a dog - or I'll cut off your computing forever. Bark... That's a good boy." 'Trusted computing' is the last gear in the machine to allow him to do that. With trusted computing he will be able to shut down anyone at anytime; after all what power has trusted computing got except to break the machine and thus force the user to do exactly what the operating system designers want them to do? If that includes wearing a Microsoft dog collar that ties them to a particular computer - so be it.
  • Wow! (Score:5, Funny)

    by Pig Hogger ( 10379 ) <`moc.liamg' `ta' `reggoh.gip'> on Saturday November 30, 2002 @12:06PM (#4783909) Journal
    'Microsoft doesn't think computer users should have to use one program to read and write a word-processing file, another to use a spreadsheet, and a third to correspond via e-mail. Rather, the company thinks, a single program should handle it all.
    Wow! Ms-EMACS!!!
  • Shades of OpenDoc? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Nikopol ( 127002 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @12:13PM (#4783923)
    How does this initiative compare to Apple's ill-fated OpenDoc? Is microsoft trying to go the "Document-Centric" way?
  • The Power of XML (Score:5, Informative)

    by Crash Culligan ( 227354 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @12:24PM (#4783951) Journal
    [Longhorn] will have a new look and feel, very different from Windows XP's. Its guts will also be radically different from Windows XP's, because they're based on XML -- extensible markup language, the emerging lingua franca of the Internet.

    I must have missed something somewhere -- when did XML become a programming language?

    Has anyone here ever worked with RTF? It's a way of adding basic font, size, layout, and color information and whatnot to a text file. You can think of it as a sort of HTML-lite. It was supposed to be cross-platform too, but Microsoft produced a version of it which was so alien that no other RTF system could handle it without preprocessing.

    Now Microsoft is using XML, a cross-platform, open data markup system, and using it extensively in a proprietary, closed operating system?

    XML is pretty open (at least, now anyway). What's going to make Microsoft's implementation of it "special" (in that Microsoft-special way) is the internal and proprietary XSLs which read and interpret the tags to display the information on screen and in print. Other systems can read the XML documents, but to make sense of them the way Longhorn's software will requires information that Microsoft yet again won't share.

    It should be possible to recreate XSLs from the structure of the XML, which would seem to make it extremely easy to reverse-engineer. In order to prevent that, Microsoft has to "extend" XML in such a way that it breaks on other systems.

    I fear for the future of XML now.

  • by Mongoose ( 8480 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @02:38PM (#4784428) Homepage
    Yes, it looks like longhorn is based on MS BOB tech!

    Yay! I hope clippy the paper clip is an optional avatar this time.

    Anyone considering buy longhorn gets what they deserve imho; but it's too bad most people have no idea about anything computer related -- and will buy anything preinstalled even if they can't even use it.

    I like how all these kids on the local campus are removing XP from their machines to install win98 for example.
  • by Chanc_Gorkon ( 94133 ) <> on Saturday November 30, 2002 @04:18PM (#4784725)
    Being this thing won't be out for a while now, I bet it won't even be out in 2004. First off, Microsoft IS powerful, but if everyone decided no we aren't going to support your silly hardware requirements, then Microsoft will have no choice but to drop it. Also, how many times have we hard of pie in the sky things that are suposed to be in the next version and they still aren't in it. Windows 95 was supposed to do things that XP has not even done yet. Now one thing I wish we would get is some hardware based encryption. Mainframes have had a optional encryption processor for a while and it's only job is encryption. Anytime you need something encrypted, you ship it off to the encryption processor. Being hardware based, it would be tons faster.
  • by thecampbeln ( 457432 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @04:27PM (#4784763) Homepage
    One: "This could bring a higher level of security than anything we've ever seen. It will almost completely prevent the platform from being compromised." [Giga analyst Rob Enderle]

    Did anyone else think of the 'unsinkable' Titanic when they read this? Being from the analyst or not, the arrogance in this statement alone about the command of our current technology is as scary as the statements made for the Titanic!

    Two: "Microsoft doesn't think computer users should have to use one program to read and write a word-processing file, another to use a spreadsheet, and a third to correspond via e-mail. Rather, the company thinks, a single program should handle it all."

    We have this already... it's called a WEB BROWSER! From what I can determine from this statement, they are seeking to make a common shell that has 'plugins' to run different files. Just like there's a flash plugin, a Quicktime plugin, etc in browsers today. Couple this with XML and basically all they would need to do is make a base parser application that accepted a specific XSLT to deal with a specific file-type. If it does boil down to a paradigm such as this, 'software as a service' via the net would be cheap and easy bandwidth wise (all they'd have to do is download/manage an XSLT or the property MS version of one). They already have this paradigm in Office (think of an embedded spreadsheet in a word doc), so I suppose that it's nature to make this the next logical step.

    Both of these statements involve putting all a user's eggs in one basket. If everything was a plugin into a master parser app, imagine having that app with a vulnerability, crashing, etc! To a certain extent I say let Microsoft do this, let Microsoft auto-download and install the latest updates, let Microsoft manage Office over the net. Why? Because the first time they have a failure (like all the problems with Hotmail/Passport a year or so back) and it brings EVERYONE down with them, they'll be in a world of hurt from their own loyal customers. The first time a hot-patch corrupts the functionality of an in house app in a Fortune 500/1000, the first time a single virus takes down all MS apps (Office, Exchange...), the first time this happens and keeps even a few big companies from using their Microsoft systems for even a few hours they're sunk. How could they not be responsible legally? And even if they weren't, imagine having to fight 1000s of 'frivolous' lawsuits in 100s of jurisdictions in 10s of countries!

    Just like the LotR relation mentioned above... with one ring, everyone has one foe. And when everyone has one foe, it's easier to band together and fight said foe no matter what their strength is. So in short, go ahead Microsoft... let them take just enough rope to hang themselves!

    • Also, Apple was doing that many years ago with OpenDoc (assisted by IBM). OpenDoc was just that: document centric, in the sense that you'd have one program and it'd load modules from entirely separate developers if necessary in order to include the functionality in the document. So, you'd have drawing or painting dragged into your word processing document, very fancy charting, live web content, fancy charting DRIVEN by web content, live telnet windows to chat in- whatever!

      I can vouch that this was very slow- on a 33 mhz 68040. It was also slow on a 200 mhz 604e. Around this time the project was mysteriously killed at the same time that Jobs was seeking additional support and investment from Microsoft, so it never went any farther, and it was always so technically arcane that very few people could handle developing for OpenDoc.

      Anyhow, if this is what Microsoft want now, they are not inventing: only stealing from what Apple and IBM were doing AND SHIPPING years ago, and possibly from what they may have had a role in killing for everybody else. If OpenDoc had a market to operate in, by now it might have been something very amazing- I can vouch that using it led to some striking results you wouldn't expect, convenience issues that helped things happen that otherwise wouldn't. Of course, at the time it was a blow to the very concept of Office- and at the time Microsoft did not want to deprecate their cash cow, much less for some Apple/IBM product.

  • by Shuh ( 13578 ) on Saturday November 30, 2002 @05:07PM (#4784925) Journal
    "People who want to sacrifice freedom for 'security,'..." are lining up to use Palladium.

BLISS is ignorance.