Give me that Microsoft Religion – NOT!

There’s a lot of Microsoft worshipers out there. Jaredhallows is a good example. Goblin of OPEN BYTES posts a negative article about the Zune. Jaredhallows throws a fit, and accuses Goblin of being a Microsoft hater.

I told Lefty (David Schlesinger) that I won’t allow Microsoft software on any computer I own. I don’t like software that calls home when I’m online. I don’t like software that reports anything, however benign, to anyone. I don’t like it that I can’t turn this ‘feature’ off. Lefty accused me of being a Microsoft hater.

I don’t hate Microsoft. I just have no use for a company that holds so little regard for its customers, and I refuse to buy from them. Do a Google search on the phrase Microsoft screws customers and see how many hits you get. Hell, even Bing, Microsoft’s own search engine admits this. Or if you don’t trust Google or Bing, try Cuil, a little known search engine that is a nice alternative.

I don’t like how Microsoft operates. I’m not afraid to tell everyone why. To those who worship at the altar of Microsft, this is blasphemy. That I don’t love Microsoft must mean that I hate Microsoft in their minds. That I’m aware of how badly Microsoft Windows is designed, and am willing to say so, means that I’m a Microsoft hater. Saying that the Emperor has no clothes is being disrespectful to the Emperor. Being disrespectful means that I hate the Emperor.

Microsoft worshipers troll places like Groklaw, ZDNet, The Inquirer, and every other place that has forums, or allows comments, trying to keep anyone who posts from saying anything negative about their Idol. You don’t believe me? Go take a look. You say something negative, and the Microsoft Trolls (worshipers) pop up out of the woodwork, accusing you of every crime known to man (and some that they’ve invented for the occasion).

Because the Microsoft religion, or cult if you will, isn’t rational. It can’t be rational. When you worship something, it has to have a value to you. Microsoft has no value to the end user, in part because the company has no ethics.

I feel sorry for the Microsoft worshipers, worshiping at the feet of a false idol, worshipers of a false religion.


12 thoughts on “Give me that Microsoft Religion – NOT!

  1. There are also Apple zealots ("macolytes"), Linux bigots (well, the Unix lovers generally, which the macolytes are now a subcult of though they don't like admitting it), and so on.Much of it is the baby duck phenomenon; the first system we're exposed to often sets our expectations, and many folks these days don't have the time, or opportunity (or courage?) to try others long enough to understand the differences. "It is/isn't what I expect, therefore it's good/bad."But… yeah. MS is still trying to struggle along with an operating system not originally designed as a true OS, running de-facto multiuser on a system that was designed for single-user multitasking (if that).You know the old observation about dancing bears… The impressive thing is that the MS environment works as well as it does for so many things. The tradeoff has always been that the Mac does what it does very well, but there are things it simply doesn't do, whereas the Windows environment does many things half-heartedly but doesn't constrain the developers as much and thus sometimes permits other kinds of innovation.Linux *ought* to be best of both worlds, and it is for a hacker — but off-the-shelf solutions are still relatively thin on the ground. Ah well.

  2. keshlam said:"Much of it is the baby duck phenomenon; the first system we're exposed to often sets our expectations, and many folks these days don't have the time, or opportunity (or courage?) to try others long enough to understand the differences. "It is/isn't what I expect, therefore it's good/bad.""The first system I was exposed to was a Burroughs 205, a tube based machine with drum memory paper tape and punch card input and line printer output.I've worked with Univac machine language, Dec VMS, Unix, Apple Dos, MS Dos, multiple flavors of Windows, Mac OS, OSX different releases of Redhat, Knoppix, Puppy Linux, and Ubuntu. Personally I prefer Ubuntu 9.04. I have had only one experience with Windows Vista, two Netbook computers side by side, one with XP on it and one with Windows Vista. The poorer performance of Vista was noticable. Windows XP needs baby sitting to keep it clean, which is a pain. I admit I've yet to try windows 7.So my perception of "bad" or "good" is a long way from my first experience. Rather it is based on what works for me and what doesn't.For all I know, Microsoft Windows 7 may be a perfectly good operating system. However when you go to pull down a trial download, you don't get a live CD the way you do with the different versions of Linux. Instead you get the ominous warning not to install the software on a critical system, because, the sad truth of the matter is it is difficult to restore your machine to it's previous condition. It is so very much easier not to bother. Sorry Microsoft. So if this makes me a Linux or Ubuntu zealot, so be it.

  3. I remember Heathkit offering a computer kit based on the PDP card. After you built the kit, you had to spend more money to license the operating system from DEC. That stuck in my craw, so I never got one. I don't know if I have any of those catalogs around any more. I've been trying to get rid of some of that old stuff.

  4. So DEC shot themselves with the foot gun. No wonder Compaq, a newer company, was able to swallow them.DEC used to make good systems, but as a company, they sucked (in my opinion).

  5. I don't know if that would be considered a foot shot. Maybe a little toe shot. I don't believe they really had a serious interest in developing the hobby market. It was more an educational product to get developers familiar with the system. I think it was Heathkit that was aiming at hobbyists and I don't think it was the best fit. You may also remember the Hero robot, that has faded from the public mind. I seem to remember Heathkit going out of business a while back.

  6. Yes, but just think of how different things could have been if they did push it, and it did take off? Microsoft might now exist. Apple might still be making 8 bit machines. Who knows?I think that they missed out on something good.

  7. I assume you meant Microsoft might not exist.I don't think it was possible for Dec to understand what the personal computer was, even though some people built personal computers using their chip set. If they had spun off their chip facility and set it free to sell to anyone, then we might have Apples running on an updated Alpha chips by now. And Dec might be providing Super Vax clusters running really massive virtual machine farms.When you consider the backgrounds, Dec was a scientific computer systems manufacturer, and IBM was an Office equipment manufacturer. The mind set of the corporate culture precluded understanding the personal computer market. IBM did not go into the personal computer market. They went into the small office computer market, and the "PC" was a variant of that product.As much as I despise Microsoft and their tactics I have to admit that Bill Gates did understand the potential of the weak contract that IBM signed. As long as you have that event in history, you have the potential for the commodity personal computer market. That is what gave Intel the huge market base that was so hard for any other chip manufacturer to compete with. No matter how you slice it, designing and building chips is expensive.Apple did not, and does not build their own chips.Dec and IBM only manufacture chips as a part of supporting their product. If Dec had spun off the Alpha chip set and set it free to go wherever it wanted to go, then perhaps you might have seen an Apple 64 bit system running on the Alpha. Now that concept is something to think about. But Dec would have been giving up a "competitive advantage" if they'd done that. Well, we know what finally happened.What I find interesting is that Hewlett Packard now is in control of two versions of Unix, their own, and that which runs on Alpha. They are also marketing Linux, kind of on their personal computers, and also on their servers: know Linus ported Linux to the Alpha years ago. Hp has the rights to the Alpha chip set.

  8. Greg,Um, partially incorrect. Apple does not make their own chips – this is true. Apple does design their own chips though. That's why they bought P.A. Semi HP doesn't own the Alpha IP, it was sold to Intel by Compaq and forms part of what Intel based Itanic on: as to who screwed up and missed out on a market – that we could be arguing for centuries. Oh, and Bill Gates didn't 'see' the advantage of the loophole in the contract. Instead he understood the market, having seen how well CP/M was doing on the 8080 and Z80 processor families, and wanted to do the same on the 8086/8088 processor families. So he pushed IBM for an open contract, and since the only competitor was asking for the same thing (Intergalactic Digital Research) IBM gave it to him.

  9. The Apple purchase of P A Semi is comparatively recent. When they came out with the Apple I, they farmed out almost everything, except stuffing the chips into the sockets for the final assembly step, then burned them in to eliminate early failures and tested them. Board layout, etching, stuffing with components and flow soldering were all outsourced. Of course at that time it was only a two sided board and a three man business.The point is they did not do something that was not key to their business, when there were specialists who could do the job better and more cost effectively, which was to provide a computer for the rest of us. The article you referenced says the processor is 300 percent more efficient in the 3 to 15 watt range.That purchase will be two years old come april. I've not heard of any rumors that Apple is dropping Intel. I don't know what is being used on the iPhone, which came out in January 2007, one year after the switch of Macs to Intel and a year before the purchase of P A Semi. Maybe we might get a clue on the January 26th event.Another interesting detail is it went from selecting P A Semi as the designer of the chip for the new Macbooks in 2006 to outright purchase of the company in 2008.There is no question that Dan Dobberpuhlis a valuable resource for Apple.Steve Jobs has demonstrated that he is not afraid to change processor chips, when you consider all the different chips Macs have used over the years. I'm sure the Pystar business has not made him happy. I'm sure you remember when Apple discontinued licensing of Macs to outside vendors. On the other hand, using the Intel chips has made it easy to run Windows on Macs, which helps break down the resistance to using Macs.Considering the fact that Microsoft will not support Windows 7 on the Arm chip means there is no such incentive to keep Apple from pursuing their own low power solution for the sub laptop market.There is lots and lots of room for speculation here if one looks outside the favorite current news topics. "Also HP doesn't own the Alpha IP, it was sold to Intel by Compaq "My apologies. That detail had slipped under my radar. So much for that fantasy.The article about who sank Itanic comments: "Microsoft half-heartedly markets a version of Windows for IA-64,…"They kept having problems with the big end/little end issue messing them up. They decided the product wasn't worth their support.I don't remember Linus saying anything in his book about that being an issue when he ported the Linux kernel to the Alpha. (Just for the Fun of it.)Porting hundreds of megs of OS to a new processor and maintaining backward capability is not a trivial thing. It's depressing to think that progress in processor technology will be limited by what the biggest customer will support for the foreseeable future. Sorry my outlook is so depressing at the beginning of a new year.Can you imagine Microsoft coming up with an even bigger emulator to provide backward capability so someone could run Windows 7 in "classic" mode on an even newer OS?I do know that Parallels ran Windows on the Power PC. So, if Microsoft really wanted to change things, they could. They don't want to. Look at how big a crack was opened when they came out with Vista. Of course the fact that not only would it require rebuilding all the apps, but the OS itself was a mess made it even more vulnerable.Hey, on a brighter note, I can run the old DOS Zork images under Wine on my new netbook.

  10. Greg,IPhone and IPod use ARM chips running a version of OSX with a different user interface. Remember that OSX is based on Free BSD, which will runs on just about every microprocessor in existance.As to P.A. Semi, apparently before the purchase they were doing design work for Apple, the IPod and IPhone may use ARM as the processor, but they use purpose built chips also. Both the IPhone and IPod have been stripped down by tech magazines, and it looks like Apple is trying to make them less expensive and more powerful by designing specialty chips for certain functions (at least that was the conclusion of the guys who stripped down the latest versions).So I don't think Apple means to drop Intel for desktop/laptop systems, but Intel doesn't have a decent mobile processor line. The Atom chips that a lot of netbooks use are to power hungry, so Apple uses ARM for IPods and IPhones, and if the rumors about a tablet are true, I would expect it to use ARM as well.And since, unlike Microsoft, Apple's OS is portable (runs on multiple processor types), using different chip families for different products is easy. If they decide that MIPS is what they need for a product, OSX can be ported pretty easily, where Windows is pretty well locked into the X86 chip family.Based on what I'm seeing in the market, I think we are going to see massive changes at Microsoft. They are loosing market share in just about every market segment that they address, and unless they can stabilize the business, it's quite possible that the company might not survive.Management is a real problem. Steve Ballmer has been a disaster as President, and there is no one in the top ranks who is capable of taking over (in my opinion).

  11. "…it's quite possible that the company might not survive."Pan Am was big, and they died. But there were other airlines to absorb the business. I still wonder what do you do with a gargantuan patent laden carcass? Look at the trustee intending to carry on the SCO FUD. If you think the patent trolls are bad now, just wait until they get their hands on Microsoft's hoard. And again, don't forget what will happen when the servers are shut down.As far as Steve B. is concerned, I wouldn't be surprised to see Bill re-enter the picture, at least on an interim basis. Not because he can fix things, but the board will insist on it. I suspect they will give up the OS approach to controlling content and go with proprietary delivery applications, as indicated by their Silverlight support on Moblin, and their work to tie up content providers, such as Nasa, Major League Baseball, Turner and so on. It costs a lot more to build an OS, and Windows is demonstrably not portable the way Apple is, as you pointed out.Of course you could always get a soft drink CEO to take over. We know how well that worked at Apple.Maybe Apple will decide to buy Microsoft. I think they have a few billion in the bank. And if MS stock keeps tanking, well, who knows. It would be ironic, given past history.

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