Have you had your Window’s fix?
Sun, Jun 20 2004 16:37
So MS tries to do the nice thing and give it’s software away. But then folks liken MS to a drug pusher for doing so and it gets nasty. L
Funny thing is, do drug pushers give away free samples? I would have thought with their short term memory problem etc, that would be a recipe for financial disaster as they wouldn’t remember who they gave the freebies to. Maybe people should put that to the test. Approach a drug dealer when you see one and ask for a free sample ;)
Of course the stupidity of the synonym is only exceeded by the stupidity of MS’s lawyers. Seriously suing someone for likening MS to a drug dealer is likely to bounce back on them *big time*. Going to be a lot of egg on some lawyer faces when the case gets dismissed, and then people say “see MS really is like a drug dealer”.
Then again, this free software initiative really is going about things the wrong way. Unfortunately it’s because of the way the software is designed, MS has no other choice if they are trying to stem the migration away from Windows. It’s a real pity, because as it stands Windows isn’t free, instead they have these occasional “tastes” of free windows.
I think the coolest way to go about this would be to componentalize MS software including Office and Windows. (of course componentalize isn’t a word *yet*).
What that would mean is there would be a basic version of windows that was free, or at least free to education and non profit organizations. A cut down version of XP home. If you wanted the windows network features that currently requires students to buy XP Pro, instead of having to buy a complete OS, you could purchase a *component* to enable that. Some of these features might be baked in, and just require licensing switches to turn them on, and others might be downloadable as extensions.
And the good news is that everyone wins. Customers get freedom of choice, and real low cost alternatives. Microsoft stems the flow away from Windows, and doesn’t get bad PR or likened to being a “pusher” for doing so. And *developers*, *developers* *developers* can all prosper too as many of the locked down integrated windows features against which you can’t compete, would become “extra components”, moving that ever so slightly more into the world of free enterprise. Realistically for MS though that competition would be minor and MS should have no legal problems in having package deals for their components.