How Not to Kill the Golden Goose

By Nick

February 21 2005

I realize some proprietary business types might not like being told they have to do things the GPL way, for these are the types of people who give orders and take charge and it feels strange not to be able to do that with Linux. Well, to those types I point out that no one forces them to use Linux. Feel free to go your own way and continue barking orders and counting your gold. Nobody is going to stop you. Have fun.

But what PJ said about the views people have of Microsoft is true. There are an amazing number of people now who have dim views of Microsoft. Yeah, I see plenty of supporters too, so I'm not saying it's universal. But compare public perception, conventional wisdom if you will, of the company now compared with the way it was ten years ago. Remember when Windows 95 was introduced, and Jay Leno was MC for a vast party up at Redmond, and people were lining up at midnight to get their hands on a copy? Microsoft was riding high back then (and they had the stock performance to prove it).

Look at them now. Longhorn? Ho hum, doesn't affect me. I left the Microsoft world behind years ago. For me it was reading Judge Jackson's entire Findings of Fact (all 150 pages). You did actually read it, right? Not just read press reports about it? If you read it, you have clear documenation of dirty deeds done by Microsoft. These were the findings that were upheld on appeal (though the remedy phase got cut). I was so indignant at Microsoft's behavior that I decided to cut the company out of my life. And I did it.

I am not a fanatic about it in the sense that I don't go around telling people to get rid of their Windows. In fact, if I know a guy is a serious gamer, I tell him that Windows is where it's at. But for myself, it was an irrevocable split. And just by casual recommendation, my family broke away too. And friends. Some went OS X, some went Linux, some a combination. None of them regret losing Microsoft from their lives. All of them enjoy not having to deal with viruses and spyware.

Microsoft had a great business model and could have kept mindshare as well as marketshare. But they got greedy, did dirty tricks, and so this is one ex- Microsoft customer who will never again trust them on my computer. They are out of my lives for good. And yes, I have Firefox like so many of my friends now. Love it.

03:54 PM EST

Copyright 2005