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Ballmer Admits Google Apps Are Biting Into MS Office

Soulskill posted more than 5 years ago | from the legacy-of-clippy dept.

Microsoft 293

twitter points out coverage of a discussion between Steve Ballmer and two Gartner analysts in which the Microsoft CEO admits that Google Apps is enjoying an advantage over Office by users who want to share their documents. He points to Office Live as their response to Google, and adds, "Google has the lead, but, if we're good at advertising, we'll compete with them in the consumer business." Whether or not they're good at advertising is still in question, if their recent attempts are any indication. Ballmer also made statements indicating some sort of arrangement with Yahoo! could still be in the works, but Microsoft was quick to step on that idea. Regarding Windows Vista, he said Microsoft was prepared for people to skip it altogether, and that Microsoft would be "ready" when it was time to deploy Windows 7.

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twitter? (0, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25421201)

You mean this guy? [slashdot.org]

Re:twitter? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25421265)

Give Soulskill a break, he's new. They all get burned [slashdot.org] by twitter at least once.

Hello! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25421269)

I'm twitter! I troll [slashdot.org] people! [slashdot.org] I make [slashdot.org] lists! I have fourteen accounts! Microsoft is after [slashdot.org] me!

Oops, I just went over the 140 char limit =(

Well, here we go (3, Interesting)

morgan_greywolf (835522) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421207)

Regarding Windows Vista, he said Microsoft was prepared for people to skip it altogether, and that Microsoft would be "ready" when it was time to deploy Windows 7.

If you ask me, Windows 7 looks a lot like a response to Linux on the desktop. Now's the time for OSS developers to step up to plate and deliver a solution that will make Windows 7 look like child's play. I'm game.

Re:Well, here we go (4, Interesting)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421313)

If you ask me, Windows 7 looks a lot like a response to Linux on the desktop. Now's the time for OSS developers to step up to plate and deliver a solution that will make Windows 7 look like child's play. I'm game.

Technologically, Linux and OS X are light years ahead of Windows, and will be by Windows 7. The problem is, some people will never use Linux unless it has a uniform UI (which, have you ever seen Windows?, Linux's UI is more uniform than even all of MS's products.) and other will not move to Linux unless *insert specialty application or game* is available on Linux. Still, the vast majority of users will use whatever is on their computer, be it Linux, Vista, XP, OS X, BSD, etc.

Re:Well, here we go (2, Interesting)

emailandthings (844006) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421355)

Linux is like the electric car... how so? Not a chance...

Re:Well, here we go (1, Insightful)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421387)

...But the problems with the electric car are:

A) They cost a lot more in the short term than buying a new or used gas powered car
B) You can't go out to a dealership and buy one
C) The reliability just isn't there yet (and that could be said for any emerging technology)

The electric car would succeed if it was cheaper or just as cheap as a gas powered car (and no, in the current economic times, the fact that it might be cheaper 5-10 years from now, isn't going to persuade anyone to buy it). Or if you could walk into a dealership and most of the cars were electric and the stigma of it being unreliable were over.

Linux already is cheaper than any other OS out there, and is close to, or the most reliable OS (especially when compared to Vista). The problem is you can't walk into a store and get a computer with Linux on it, unless you want to go for a netbook. Once the last hurdle is crossed, you can say good bye to Windows.

Re:Well, here we go (4, Insightful)

ColdWetDog (752185) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421425)

Once the last hurdle is crossed, you can say good bye to Windows.

Two concepts (not mutually exclusive):

1. Enterprise space - along with whatever mission critical application you care to name that isn't available on Linux
2. Photoshop - and no, we aren't talking about GIMP. It has to be the genuine locked down Adobe product (for all of those big commercial shops).

Yes, you can run Photoshop on OS X but there are many (perhaps most) LARGE 'artistic' groups in advertising and publishing that run on Windows.

So Linux may well make inroads in the individual user space, perhaps even in the SOHO space, but until application developers embrace Linux (or OS X or anybody else), it's gonna be Windows all the way down.

Re:Well, here we go (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25421535)

1. Enterprise space - along with whatever mission critical application you care to name that isn't available on Linux

You mean like all those things keeping people from leaving Netware?
If people with money migrate to Linux, people wanting money will follow. Shit, it's already happening.

Re:Well, here we go (2, Informative)

sloanster (213766) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421589)

> Enterprise space - along with whatever mission critical application you care to name that isn't available on Linux

LOL, ever heard of Oracle, IBM or Novell? The enterprise isn't a problem for linux, but the home market has large legacy install of peecee software that will take time to replace.

Re:Well, here we go (2, Interesting)

Nursie (632944) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421971)

The enterpirse space is embracing linux. It's a major player in the server space and enterprise desktops are getting more linux friendly all the time (it's an option at our enterprise).

Re:Well, here we go (0, Offtopic)

rcallan (1256716) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421683)

Do you have a source for pure electric cars being more unreliable? I'd agree that hybrids are, but I think that's because they have both systems...

Re:Well, here we go (1)

lysergic.acid (845423) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421825)

electric motors have fewer moving parts than ICEs, so electric vehicles are fundamentally more reliable. but there's a lot of unsubstantiated FUD floating out there because of the strong anti-environmentalist sentiments which exist in our society. but if people can be convinced to take a rational approach and actually look at the facts rather than resorting to knee-jerk reactions they'd see that their negative assumptions and associations about electric vehicles are incorrect.

but most consumer make purchase decisions based on illogical emotional associations. that's why American auto makers invest so heavily on marketing and advertising. so "big" = "safe," and "gas-powered" = "better performance," and "eco cars" = "shitty." but these false associations are quickly dispelled once one actually makes an effort to research the costs & benefits of electric vehicles. and with the internet it should be easier than ever for individuals to access a wide variety of news sources and get a balanced perspective on the issue.

Re:Well, here we go (1)

rcallan (1256716) | more than 5 years ago | (#25422077)

I mostly agree, though I was speculating that most hybrid designs are more unreliable since they require both system to be functional. I would guess the exception is the design with an electric drive and a small gas generator used to charge the batteries (chevy volt for instance). In my opinion all the other hybrid designs are of less value because 1) they are more complicated to design and build, 2) they don't motivate people towards getting a larger percentage of the energy from the electric grid.

They make, and people buy, hybrid suvs for example. As far as I'm concerned this is even worse than buying the gas powered suv because people assume they're "doing their part" because it's a hybrid, and so they'll keep buying this design as long as they're available. I don't think making them plug-in is going to help because they're so heavy that they'd require a huge battery stack and a larger electric motor to make that work, to the point where there's no gain in efficiency.

I think the plug-in vehicles with an electric drivetrain and small gas generator is vastly superior because it makes people aware of how far they can go on just the batteries before they start burning gas, while still giving them the assurance that they'll never get stuck anywhere. If the owners of one of these realize they haven't bought any gas in 2 years, it's highly likely they'll look for a model without a generator for their next purchase.

I don't think consumers are making illogical emotional associations, I think they're just using an incorrect information in making decision. For instance, if they think there's nothing wrong with burning fossil fuels and the cost of fuel is low, why would they ever buy a more expensive electric vehicle or a hybrid?

The problem is that a lot of people associate 0 benefit to protecting the environment, and 0 penalty to any consequences more than 20 years in the future. Under these assumptions, why would they ever go out of their way to pay more for designs that address these issues they don't care about?

Re:Well, here we go (4, Informative)

SL Baur (19540) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421729)

The problem is you can't walk into a store and get a computer with Linux on it, unless you want to go for a netbook.

You can in a free country. My next computer purchase will be a Linux preinstall from Octagon. Or a competitor a few stores down. You can buy Linux preinstalls from anywhere in Manila.

One word (2, Informative)

germansausage (682057) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421805)

AutoCad

Or whatever app it is that your industry uses that doesn't run on Linux, will keep the need for Windows for a very long time.

Re:One word (1)

Nursie (632944) | more than 5 years ago | (#25422019)

Not necessarily.

Some sectors, sure, but many are already running on various unix machines. Also things like Lotus Notes (which I hate but acknowledge many enterprises use extensively) are moving to more platform agnostic positions.

Re:Well, here we go (2)

grub (11606) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421417)


Linux's UI is more uniform than even all of MS's products

Unless you're referring to the uniformity of a nice 80x24 text console, you're way off. Unix/Linux have oodles of different window managers.

Re:Well, here we go (4, Insightful)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421453)

Yes, tons of window managers, but the average user only has to pick one of 2 (or three if you count in XFCE) but if you stick with all the apps with a G as the first letter you can be assured a standard UI if you are using Gnome, likewise if K is the first letter you can be assured that it uses a standard UI for KDE, compare that with MS who has tons of different icons, etc. for different products which are all in the same time frame and first-party applications, see http://arstechnica.com/articles/culture/microsoft-learn-from-apple-II.media/vista.png [arstechnica.com] for an example of what I'm talking about.

Re:Well, here we go (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25421521)

What really matters to most people hasn't changed. Since 1995 there has been a bar with a start button on it, which just recently changed to a circle. The X has always been in the top left. File, edit, help have always been in the same spot.

I fail to how this is not easier for the average user.

Re:Well, here we go (5, Insightful)

lysergic.acid (845423) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421887)

easier for the average user to do what?

someone who's used KDE or Gnome since 1995 would find it easier to use KDE/Gnome than !KDE or !Gnome. what does that prove? unless you're trying to argue that people should stick with the same operating system that they've used in the past because users are too stupid to deal with change, i don't really see your point. that has nothing to do with UI uniformity or the usability of a particular OS.

there's more to software user-friendliness/usability than just resistance to change.

Re:Well, here we go (1)

tibman (623933) | more than 5 years ago | (#25422085)

why yes, redmond Themes and Skins are very easy to use in Gnome and KDE, oh wait.. i didn't read your comment correctly : /

Re:Well, here we go (1)

BrokenHalo (565198) | more than 5 years ago | (#25422225)

File, edit, help have always been in the same spot.

Unless, of course, you count Office 2007. Confused the hell out of me for a while when I first saw that.

Re:Well, here we go (1)

SL Baur (19540) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421835)

Unless you're referring to the uniformity of a nice 80x24 text console, you're way off. Unix/Linux have oodles of different window managers.

Yeah, so what? When Microsoft Windows was capturing its critical market share, there was a similar amount of variety there too.

Choice is Good. Specialization is for insects.

If it is strict interface uniformity you want, there is only one choice - Mac OS X. Amazing that it still looks similar to Macs in the 80s and also amazing that they've transitioned to a real O/S over that time.[1]

(Macs are very cool for playing World of Warcraft, but for getting real work done, give me any decent Linux distro with KDE and XEmacs).

[1] And for me, I can change the mislabeled big key to the left of the `A' key to what God Intended It To Be, a control key, in less time on Mac OS X than I can on a brand new Linux install with KDE.

Re:Well, here we go (3, Funny)

HangingChad (677530) | more than 5 years ago | (#25422093)

Choice is Good. Specialization is for insects.

Microsoft Dung Beetle. Now that's a catchy product name!

Microsoft Dung Beetle? (1)

ppanon (16583) | more than 5 years ago | (#25422257)

We Gotcha!

Wait, wasn't that DataSoft [wikipedia.org] ? It's close admittedly.

Re:Well, here we go (1, Troll)

BrokenHalo (565198) | more than 5 years ago | (#25422267)

Macs are very cool for playing World of Warcraft, but for getting real work done, give me any decent Linux distro with KDE and XEmacs

I won't take issue with your point about KDE - different strokes and all that - but I always find it a bit hard to comprehend the attraction of XEmacs. I am a big fan of (the basic GNU) Emacs, because it's so easy to edit with a nice blank screen rather than all having those superfluous menubars and whatnot cluttering up the workspace. (My perspective is of one who remembers when Emacs was a bunch of macros for TECO, so I never got into the habit of using a menubar.) And now that GNU Emacs can render fonts nicely in X11, XEmacs has become even more otiose.

Re:Well, here we go (1)

SanityInAnarchy (655584) | more than 5 years ago | (#25422263)

And you're free to pick one. On KDE, I can also pick one theme, and have it automatically applied to the two major widget sets.

It ends up being quite a lot more uniform, for the apps I actually use, than Windows ever was.

Re:Well, here we go (1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25421451)

Linux and OS X are light years ahead of Windows

Like what? And why should customers care about it? Your responses will show if you're a troll, or if you have anything technical reasoning behind it.

Pre-emptive response:

* Viruses - THis is not a OS problem, its a user problem. I could create a .sh file that deleted .config files or something equally evil and tell your grandma to run it and she will. (You get the point... ) (SELinux? Apparmour? Who configures profiles for each app? In anycase this wont stop 'all' evil apps. You can access the phonebook,calender to either display and insert new entries or to delete it. The 'intent' is whats the issue here, not permissions per se.)

* Malware - Again not specific to Windows.

* Crashes - Yeah, comeback with real proof. Prove conclusively, once and for all that X percentage of crashes are because of MS code, Vs. X percentage of crashes on Linux. If you want to blame poor design, again proove conclusively with real proof - Papers, OS research(Maybe a bit much to ask, but then you're claiming a 'bit much' too). How many System admins look at crash dumps and just blame the OS?

* Drivers - Add all the drivers to the kernel? So the manufacturers of devices have to wait till the kernel maintainer decides on his own sweet time when to integrate patches. AND THEN wait till picks them up downstream. Nice solution. Doesnt scale, buddy.

* Applications - All the software in the world at a single spot. i.e. Google for applications. Who addresses commercial software? Who handles payments for this? Who will handle updates? Do users want to download Multi GB Games/Applications? Who pays for the massive bandwidth? What if you're not connected online,etc ,etc. Again. Doesnt scale, buddy.

I'll wait for some real responses now...

Re:Well, here we go (4, Informative)

99BottlesOfBeerInMyF (813746) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421553)

Linux and OS X are light years ahead of Windows...

Like what? And why should customers care about it?

Well, OS X has drag and drop system services so users and applications can provide universal functionality, like grammar checking in all applications. Linux has more cleanly implemented network services and both have better standards compliance so you don't end up using as many redundant services in mixed OS environments (eg, UPNP and ZeroConf to discover other network services, like when you run Adobe CS on Windows). Both have better and more granular and usable ACLs for userspace applications. I could go on, but I'm not investing a lot of time, especially responding to an AC. Register an account already.

* Viruses - THis is not a OS problem, its a user problem. I could create a .sh file that deleted .config files or something equally evil and tell your grandma to run it and she will... * Malware - Again not specific to Windows.

Let's be clear. Trojans, viruses and worms are all distinct and all problems, but of the three worms are the largest problem and Windows is the most vulnerable due to a variety of design decisions, even if there were no install base disparity. Malware is a theoretical threat on Linux and OS X, but a practical, day-to-day problem on Windows and theories that if market share were to become more balanced are simply that, theories and not applicable to making practical decisions today.

* Applications - All the software in the world at a single spot. i.e. Google for applications. Who addresses commercial software? Who handles payments for this? Who will handle updates? Do users want to download Multi GB Games/Applications? Who pays for the massive bandwidth? What if you're not connected online,etc ,etc. Again. Doesnt scale, buddy.

Don't even understand what you're trying to argue here. Please be more clear.

Re:Well, here we go (3, Insightful)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421559)

* Viruses - THis is not a OS problem, its a user problem.

* Malware - Again not specific to Windows.

Oh, right. I forgot, your browser is clearly supposed to install all kinds of random crap that messes with settings and toolbars without prompts. Oh wait, other browsers don't do that? Other browsers prompt you before they do things like that? Yes, MS managed to fix a lot of that with IE7, but its still not an excuse for them doing that for the ~2-3 years of IE6.

* Applications - All the software in the world at a single spot. i.e. Google for applications. Who addresses commercial software? Who handles payments for this? Who will handle updates? Do users want to download Multi GB Games/Applications? Who pays for the massive bandwidth? What if you're not connected online,etc ,etc. Again. Doesnt scale, buddy.

Lets see... On an average Windows install, the only software that isn't usually pirated, is made by Microsoft in the form of Office/Works/etc., An anti-virus/spyware application but the rest is all freeware/shareware/OSS. Most people's software is downloaded. You make a good point about games, but it honestly wouldn't be hard for a game maker to include a binary to run for Linux, same with commercial software. The thing is, boxed commercial software is a really, really, really small part of the average user's computer even on Windows. The "massive bandwidth" would be provided in the same way it always has, via mirrors and the official site. Today, most computers that are not in specialty use are connected online. If they aren't, it isn't that hard to go to a library or a friends house, or buy a CD with some .deb files in them, double click and type in your password.

Linux also has the advantage of customization. For example, its a pain to create a customized XP/Vista install disk, its trivial for someone to create a modified Ubuntu or other distro with the applications you need.

Re:Well, here we go (4, Insightful)

gallwapa (909389) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421945)

Most people's software is downloaded?

Not to quote Sarah Palin, but "Joe Sixpack" and Grandma have a lot of legit software. I think it is a stretch to say most software is pirated. Do you know how many people are STILL buying WinZip? Or those little "Reg cleaners"? Games?

C'mon...

Re:Well, here we go (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25422107)

Agreed. The kiddies getting everything on TPB assume that not everyone is willing to pay for software. They are wrong. I for one do not hesitate to buy a piece of software (yes, even though I can pirate it) if I find it useful and I can afford it.

Re:Well, here we go (2, Informative)

mrsteveman1 (1010381) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421569)

There are some things that used to be architectural flaws with Windows services that caused security problems but they are supposed to be fixed in Vista now.

Crashes, I have seen a blue screen reference MS-provided code, but upon digging deeper i found conclusively that it was a third party driver responsible for the crash, and removing that driver fixed the problem.

Drivers on Linux i agree, the Linux driver model is flawed as you noted. The effects of this flawed plan are evident, some things work (months after the release of the hardware in many cases, if ever), some don't work at all, and some things sort of work but with caveats. Distros make up for some of the problems by including drivers ahead of their upstream scheduled inclusion, and including closed source drivers, though they get blasted for it by fanatics.

Re:Well, here we go (4, Interesting)

techno-vampire (666512) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421977)

You ask some good questions and make some good points. However, I can tell you one place where Linux (and, AFAIK FreeBSD) are light years ahead of anything from Microsoft and have been for years: Linux partitions don't need regular defragging. They can go for years without needing one and, unless they're over 80% full or so and have large files that are constantly changing they probably never will. This isn't because the file system itself is better, but because Linux doesn't jam the files one right next to the other like Windows does; it leaves room between them for growth. If MS really wanted to "embrace and extend," they'd rewrite the part of the OS that decides where files go to be more like the Linux model and do away with defrag altogether.

Re:Well, here we go (5, Informative)

SL Baur (19540) | more than 5 years ago | (#25422105)

I hate to give a long response to an AC ...

Like what? And why should customers care about it? Your responses will show if you're a troll, or if you have anything technical reasoning behind it.

Linux, like Mac OS X and really all modern Unix-derived systems do not crash. I've only run production quality Linux systems since the late 1990s and I cannot remember the last time I've had the system crash. That equates X Server crashes with system crashes by the way. The last reliable X server crash I had was in the late 1990s when XEmacs was trying to display the Mule hello page. I got patches into XEmacs to fix that side and patches into the X server to fix that side and Life Moved On.

* Viruses - THis is not a OS problem, its a user problem. I could create a .sh file that deleted .config files or something equally evil and tell your grandma to run it and she will.

True, but deceptive. Before Microsoft Windows 95 vulgarized the internet, it was long known that running arbitrary executable code coming across the wire was A Very Bad Idea. The decision by Microsoft to jump into internet support *and* provide default unprompted execute support for that poisoned enough minds to make it an industry standard.

* Malware - Again not specific to Windows.

No, but it was Microsoft Windows that popularized the idea of execute any old thing including malware by default.

* Crashes - Yeah, comeback with real proof.

It's your reputation, not ours. My best anecdotal evidence was something that crossed an internal corporate email group where I wrote something like "Microsoft Windows XP is the most stable O/S they've ever released because it only crashes 1 or 2 times a week." and among the responses I got back were "I wish it were that few ...".

In my opinion, it doesn't really matter where the blame actually lies (perhaps it does lie on enterprise crapware that the Microsoft Windows users are forced to use, but whatever). It's the fact that the platform does crash and people are conditioned to it. The last supposedly all intranet web meeting I had to attend at work, was delayed due to software issues on Microsoft Windows XP. Money was lost while a bunch of highly paid engineers were looking at a blank screen. Says a lot about True Cost of Ownership too...

In the meantime, my desktop machine (running RHEL) has only ever been rebooted on power failure or moving the equipment since it was deployed.

* Drivers - Add all the drivers to the kernel? So the manufacturers of devices have to wait till the kernel maintainer decides on his own sweet time when to integrate patches. AND THEN wait till picks them up downstream. Nice solution. Doesnt scale, buddy.

Greg KH has gotten into the latest Linux kernel a staging area where half-worked drivers can get wider code distribution and more eyes and hands to fix them up. It remains to be seen how well this work, but they are trying.

I used to think the amount of code changes that is currently going on in the Linux was unsustainable with control of the final tree in a single person's hands. Linus proved me wrong.

The amount of code that goes into the Linux kernel every day (on average) is astonishing.

* Applications - All the software in the world at a single spot. i.e. Google for applications. Who addresses commercial software? Who handles payments for this? Who will handle updates?

While I have no problem with proprietary software, like games, on something like Linux or OpenBSD/Mac OS X, I do have a problem with the Software As A Service model. It sucks and I agree with you on this point.

The one and only thing I thank Microsoft for is that at the time it was strangling the PC market, it also killed X terminals, which were cheap, but an abomination to use, in my opinion. I thank them for that.

Re:Well, here we go (1)

microhard_googler (1376563) | more than 5 years ago | (#25422253)

* Crashes - Yeah, comeback with real proof.

It's your reputation, not ours. My best anecdotal evidence was something that crossed an internal corporate email group where I wrote something like "Microsoft Windows XP is the most stable O/S they've ever released because it only crashes 1 or 2 times a week." and among the responses I got back were "I wish it were that few ...".

In my opinion, it doesn't really matter where the blame actually lies (perhaps it does lie on enterprise crapware that the Microsoft Windows users are forced to use, but whatever). It's the fact that the platform does crash and people are conditioned to it. The last supposedly all intranet web meeting I had to attend at work, was delayed due to software issues on Microsoft Windows XP. Money was lost while a bunch of highly paid engineers were looking at a blank screen. Says a lot about True Cost of Ownership too...

In the meantime, my desktop machine (running RHEL) has only ever been rebooted on power failure or moving the equipment since it was deployed.

I havent seen a single bsod in xp or vista since last 4 years which is time when i first started using xp. they were frequent in win98 though. its a different matter that i havent seen any linux crashes either in the same time, but i must add that applications crash more frequently on linux than on windows. quanta, gedit etc just crash suddenly and *boom* all my unsaved work is gone -- no recovery whatsoever. another thing i hate about linux desktop apps is that they dont save the preferences from operations performed last time. eg - i have to browse the entire path once again starting from the app's default directory even on accessing the same file a second time using the file browser launched from within the app.

Re:Well, here we go (5, Insightful)

BrokenHalo (565198) | more than 5 years ago | (#25422353)

Viruses - THis is not a OS problem, its a user problem.

If Windows can be infected with viruses or malware within hours of installation, with almost no user input, that is an OS problem. Lame excuses not accepted.

Crashes - Yeah, comeback with real proof.

Having just spent the last few hours rescuing a friend's computer when Microsoft had advised her to re-format and reinstall (which would have blown away her PhD thesis in the process) after a crash from which it wouldn't reboot, I think I'm in a good position to answer that. This lady was only running MS Word at the time, and last time I looked, that was MS code.

I have been using Linux on all of my desktop machines since 1995, and I have never had a kernel crash. No, NOT EVEN ONCE. Sure, I have had the occasional panic on bootup when I've done something stupid like forgetting to build in support for my root filesystem type, but I don't think that counts.

Re:Well, here we go (1)

The Bungi (221687) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421537)

Technologically, Linux and OS X are light years ahead of Windows

Are they? I can't really comment about OS X since I don't use it (my brother swears by it tho) but being well versed in both Windows and Linux, I suppose I tend to disagree. Would you list some of the things that you consider Linux to be light years ahead of Windows on? I'm curious.

Re:Well, here we go (4, Informative)

3p1ph4ny (835701) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421741)

This is coming from a developer perspective, but I think two of these apply (maybe moreso) to your average user:

1. Packages. Specifically, aptitude. It is unbelievably easy to find software to open weird file formats, play simple games, or speak some weird protocol. This is the single #1 feature Linux (BSDs too, possibly) has going for it. Packages are awesome for experienced users and newbies. If you say otherwise, you really haven't tried a well maintained distribution yet.

Now, if a package doesn't do what you want (this is what a lot of power users complain about), compile it yourself. /usr/local exists, use it. Again, grandma isn't going to need a custom compiled version of Wine, but I do. It's therefore not an issue that she is forced to use the one in the repo.

2. $SHELL shell, and the associated core utils. I use bash, but that's probably because it's what I learned first. I know my grandmother, my mother, and my girlfriend don't want to use the CLI, so it's not a major feature for most. I don't care. The Windows shell and core utils suck, and bash, csh, ksh, *sh are better.

3. UI consistency. ZOMFG WUT? Yes; I use KDE, and it kicks ass. There is consistency between the file browser, the archive utility, the media player, etc. You'd be hard pressed to argue that explorer, Windows Media Player (or winamp, or foobar, or whatever), and winrar or winzip all have the same interface.

However, their KDE counterparts Dolphin, Ark, and Amarok all look the same. If I want to change a setting, I know where to look instead of having to try "Edit -> Preferences" then "Tools -> Options" then "Options -> Settings" then... Also, similar settings are grouped under similar headings.

Those are just three things off of the top of my head.

Re:Well, here we go (1)

99BottlesOfBeerInMyF (813746) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421913)

1. Packages. Specifically, aptitude. It is unbelievably easy to find software to open weird file formats, play simple games, or speak some weird protocol. This is the single #1 feature Linux (BSDs too, possibly) has going for it. Packages are awesome for experienced users and newbies. If you say otherwise, you really haven't tried a well maintained distribution yet.

In theory I acknowledge that packages and package managers are a superior technology. In practice, package managers and formats in use provide a significant advantage for installation and updates if you're only using OSS and are only using packages that are in the right format for your manager. In practice, they're a problem as implemented for install from a Web page, run from removable media or network, portability to new hardware, incompatibility among package formats, and consistency of installation usability.

They are certainly a big win for upgrading software, but for installation can be a real usability downfall for a significant number of current users, although they are getting better. My ideal OS has a package manager, but significantly improved from what is in use today and with a much more flexible package format.

2. $SHELL shell, and the associated core utils. I use bash, but that's probably because it's what I learned first. I know my grandmother, my mother, and my girlfriend don't want to use the CLI, so it's not a major feature for most.

Amen! Powershell just isn't there.

3. UI consistency. ZOMFG WUT? Yes; I use KDE, and it kicks ass.

I always end up with a mix of Gnome and KDE apps and never know quite what the capabilities and UI is going to be. Not that Windows is a lot better, but from a design perspective it is more consistent, if the larger design base has resulted in a less consistent result.

BSD! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25421617)

Well, at least we were mentioned before etc.

Re:Well, here we go (2)

akoltz (1379875) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421733)

Technologically, Linux and OS X are light years ahead of Windows...

This is just wrong. Regardless of how you feel about Windows as a whole, the NT kernel is easily among the best, if not the best on the market.

Re:Well, here we go (2, Informative)

wisty (1335733) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421783)

Anyone who says that Linux is technologically light years ahead of Windows is ... wrong. Stuff like OLE, the Com interface, the Jet database (which does the job of SQLite, not the other ones), data sharing API's and so on are much better in Windows that Linux. Yes, I have heard of Wine, and Mono. They are not the main point of of the open source software ecosystem, which has different goals to Microsoft; both technologically and from a business point of view..

Of course, you could say that Linux (and OSX) has a better design, or that more free software works better on Linux, both of which are clear advantages. No argument there.

Or that consumers (non-programmers) need more killer apps to show them the power of plain text (which is the underlying point of Linux), as opposed to embedded applications and 'rich' (ugly) API and data formats.

Re:Well, here we go (1)

JackieBrown (987087) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421403)

That's interesting.

To me KDE 5 looks more responsive than Windows 7.

Of course, I haven't tried either one since they are not out (or made?) yet.

Re:Well, here we go (4, Insightful)

node 3 (115640) | more than 5 years ago | (#25422091)

If you ask me, Windows 7 looks a lot like a response to Linux on the desktop.

Windows 7 is a response to Linux the same way Coke Zero is a response to Tab.

Windows 7 is a response to Vista. People turned down the bloated system that is Vista, so Microsoft has made promises to fix all the issues and release a new system in two years' time. But as is always the case, the promises will be forgotten and the release date will slip again and again. But Windows 8, now that's going to really rock...

Version 6.1 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25421215)

From what I gather, 7 is basically a remixed version of Vista, somewhat similar to XP being a remixed version of 2K. When are they going to rebuild the damn thing?

Re:Version 6.1 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25421653)

Forget that! Vista was a rehash of XP. MS isn't a one-trick pony, but damn they like to play the part.

Google Apps is pretty useful (4, Interesting)

yppiz (574466) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421221)

I started a company last year, and I could have chosen to either: a) set up a Windows Server and buy multiple Office licenses, or b) sign up for Google Docs.

Docs has worked out really well for us.

Re:Google Apps is pretty useful (2, Insightful)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421363)

Or, set up a Linux server and use OOo and configure it to do a few backups or set up a RAID.

Re:Google Apps is pretty useful (4, Insightful)

Anpheus (908711) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421427)

Your solution is the most complicated to implement, even if it's the least expensive.

Re:Google Apps is pretty useful (2, Insightful)

Frosty Piss (770223) | more than 5 years ago | (#25422125)

Your solution is the most complicated to implement, even if it's the least expensive.

Maybe so, but honestly, Google Apps are not a particularly satisfying solution. Open Office is much much more suitable. Gmail maybe, but spreadsheets, word processing, and presentations? Google Apps just don't cut it.

In my opinion...

Re:Google Apps is pretty useful (4, Informative)

Lemmy Caution (8378) | more than 5 years ago | (#25422333)

Google Docs is useful as a collaborative text editor. Almost everything else about it - particularly formatting - gets broken much too often. I've been trying, earnestly, to use it for academic writing, and the results have been ridiculous: as in, depending on what browser I use, wordwrap may not work; internal links don't work; fonts change from time to time, etc.

Ballmer is correct in noting (which, since noone RTFA, I should note contradicts the badly written summary) that Google Apps is not something that is worrying them: Open Office is. I would love Google Docs to step up, but it definitely has not, and seems to be trapped in the Google perpetual beta limbo.

Re:Google Apps is pretty useful (2, Insightful)

SL Baur (19540) | more than 5 years ago | (#25422129)

Your solution is the most complicated to implement, even if it's the least expensive.

Perhaps, but how much are your company's documents worth to you?

I also would argue that Darkness404's idea would be the safest, regardless of cost.

Windows is not more complicated than Linux (1)

hansg (264039) | more than 5 years ago | (#25422317)

How is that more complicated than setting up a Windows server and MS Office?

Sure setting up backups and raid is "complicated" but, is there something magical with Windows and MS Office that makes that unnecessary?

/Hans

Re:Google Apps is pretty useful (5, Informative)

Firehed (942385) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421435)

Google Apps has the MAJOR advantage of having live document collaboration, which AFAIK isn't even close to available in MS Office or OpenOffice.org. For some people/companies this doesn't matter at all, but for others it'll make it the obvious choice. You can think of it like the collaborative features offered by Sharepoint and the like, but implemented in a way that is actually usable.

On the flip side, you're going to need a lot of love from Gears if a hosted solution scares you. While Docs is fine for what I do most of the time (and the rest of the time I really need more of a layout tool, like Apple's Pages), I envision them seeing a lot more adoption if there were a desktop app that synced up with the cloud (whether Google's, or your own internal setup which could be as simple as a network share). And of course, pretty much anything that's not MS Office tends to have compatibility issues with the MS Office-using rest of the world, whether you like it or not. You can whine all you want about the lack of truly open standards for document exchange (besides plain text) and I'd agree with you all day long, but that doesn't fix the problem.

Re:Google Apps is pretty useful (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25421909)

You can whine all you want about the lack of truly open standards for document exchange (besides plain text) and I'd agree with you all day long, but that doesn't fix the problem.

No, but moving away from MS Office does.

Re:Google Apps is pretty useful (3, Interesting)

zmjjmz (1264856) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421499)

Or just install OpenGoo on a Linux server and have everyone work from there. This way you own the documents you upload.

Re:Google Apps is pretty useful (4, Funny)

mrsteveman1 (1010381) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421573)

I don't want goo on my server, i keep my porn elsewhere for a reason.

Re:Google Apps is pretty useful (2, Insightful)

stephanruby (542433) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421777)

Or just install OpenGoo on a Linux server and have everyone work from there. This way you own the documents you upload.

What do you mean by saying "you own the documents you upload"? Are you talking about legal ownership or physical ownership?

There is nothing in the ToS of Google Apps that implies you don't own your own documents. And also, if you want physical local ownership, all of you have to do is enable Google Gears, and that will maintain local copies of your documents on your desktop/laptop -- so that you can keep on working completely disconnected from the internet -- should you ever need to.

Re:Google Apps is pretty useful (1)

Bazouel (105242) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421585)

Exactly. Same here :) It's not just university students that do it, as the article implies.

Re:Google Apps is pretty useful (1)

Daengbo (523424) | more than 5 years ago | (#25422139)

Do you have geographically diverse employees? I'm really interested in your experience because I've proposed moving to Google Apps for a certain set of contractors in my area which work at a couple hundred different locations. Please read the full background in my journal [slashdot.org] . I need opinions and hurdles I'm likely to hit.

Microsoft is evil an all . . . (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25421223)

. . . but trusting one's data to the "cloud" is just plain foolhardy. I'll keep local applications and local control, thankyouverymuch.

Re:Microsoft is evil an all . . . (2, Insightful)

Darkness404 (1287218) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421341)

The thing about the cloud is, it has more uptime than the average user can ever hope to have. For example, the average user makes no backups except perhaps on a yearly basis, even if one of Google's servers literally caught on fire, most of the data could easily be recovered. The average person doesn't have a RAID, so when one disk crashes the entire system crashes, and they don't have backups. Yes, for us geeks and our 1 TB external HDs, local fileservers, 8 GB flash drives and rsync we might be able to have marginally better uptime than the cloud, but honestly, the normal user is going to have better reliability with the cloud.

Re:Microsoft is evil an all . . . (4, Insightful)

rtb61 (674572) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421501)

Unless of course the network goes down, then zero access. It happens all the time, a ship drops and anchor in the wrong spot, somebody somewhere in the routing path configures the hardware wrong, power brownouts anywhere in that route and of course it is only in beta and the warranties are completely and absolutely less than worthless. Cloud computing is really all about data being distributed everywhere and not being locked into a limited number of locations where you have to pay rent to access it. Let's just call a spade a spade, rented access to your own data, ain't cloud computing it is greed computing.

The future in computer software is FOSS and service and support. So yes the typical end user can not really set and up maintain a stable, secure and reliable system and that is why they pay for service and support, when they do need high reliability and uptime and for the majority of businesses in certainly is cheap enough to achieve, they just need reliable access to people who can provide it for them.

As for the end user, easy simple access to most of their stuff, whether they are connected to the net or not is the most important, computers are not their life, they are just a means by which they can share photos, send a letter, browse the net, play a few games and maybe do a bit of shopping and bill paying.

The cloud computing that ballmer et all keep waffling on about only exists because it is the only model they can envisage where they can maintain inflated profit margins, the service and support and fully distributed computing is a much more competitive, high performance and low profit margin market. The performance aspect, is all about companies providing services must be seen to perform, must continually demonstrate high skill and reliability and any failures will soon be reported through their potential and existing client base. This is where M$ is most behind the eight ball, with a reputation for poor service and support, lying to customers, ignoring and denying customer feedback and, routinely distributing unreliable and faulty products.

Re:Microsoft is evil an all . . . (1)

at_slashdot (674436) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421697)

"Unless of course the network goes down, then zero access."

That's why there's such thing as Gears: http://gears.google.com/ [google.com]

Re:Microsoft is evil an all . . . (1)

Firehed (942385) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421509)

It's not just about uptime though. While I'll usually make the same arguments for the cloud, if something knocks out my internet connection I'm screwed regardless of whether it's available to everyone else or not. Yes, your data is on the whole a lot safer (at least with a company like Google that's not going away any time soon) in 99% of the cases, but the idea still scares a lot of companies.

When Google implements something where you can configure the Apps For Your Domain content to sync down to a server you're physically in control of, it will scare businesses and nervous geeks a LOT less. When they make some sort of OpenOffice plugin (where you log in to your google/apps for your domain account) or a Google Docs desktop suite as step 2, Ballmer will shit himself. When they make it have complete computability with MS Office documents, MS Office will die, and die VERY quickly.

Re:Microsoft is evil an all . . . (1)

jamesh (87723) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421593)

Most of the time the problem is not 'the cloud' itself, but reachability. The cloud can have all the 9's it wants, but (at least for some parts of the world) the sort of SLA's with enough 9's to match the uptime of the cloud cost more $$$ than hosting the solution on site.

And no matter what SLA's you have with your ISP, a backhoe operator can take you out for hours, or even days. You can back it up with wireless for email and stuff but I don't believe that wireless can cope with the sort of bandwidth requirements of a hosted solution like Google Apps, especially if said backhoe operator takes out all internet access in a local area, and _everyone_ switches over to their wireless backup.

Still... at least you can leave the office for the day and go bowling :)

The cloud is way better for many companies (1)

EmbeddedJanitor (597831) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421473)

but it isn't for everyone.

If you're a smaller organisation that has not got IT skills or dedicated IT staff, then the cloud can be very appealing. You don't need to worry about doing backups and data sharing with associates or traveling salespeople etc is a lot easier.

In theory the cloud providers could go broke, with your data getting lost but that's a lot less likely than losing data due to a local server getting screwed.

There is no single recipe that will will work well for all organisations. Some are served best by in-house IT and some served best by the cloud.

Re:Microsoft is evil an all . . . (2, Insightful)

multisync (218450) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421641)

trusting one's data to the "cloud" is just plain foolhardy

Not to troll, but is it more so than trusting your data to proprietary software?

Misquote. (4, Funny)

base3 (539820) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421231)

Ballmer actually said "Google and their apps can bite me."

Would you believe him if he SPOKE the truth ? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25421241)

Probably not, so he puts out that line. baloney! The day it takes a noticeable bite out of Office is the day Balmer quits throwing chairs. Ain't gonna happen!

Let's get this out of the way (0, Offtopic)

Todd Fisher (680265) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421243)

Ballmer...adds, "Google has the lead, but, if we're good at advertising, we'll compete with them in the consumer business."

He then started yelling "Developers, developers, developers!" Then he threw a chair.

Compete with them in the consumer business??? (1)

Peter Simpson (112887) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421307)

When OpenOffice is free?

Good luck, Steve. I think you have lost touch with your intended customers.

prediction (1)

larry bagina (561269) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421299)

The advertising campaign for Office Live will be done in ... Google Docs.

WTF?!? (-1, Flamebait)

Hairy Heron (1296923) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421339)

How the fuck did a twitter post make a front page news story? Slow fucking night I guess... This editor is even worse than ScuttleMonkey

I don't believe it (5, Funny)

garett_spencley (193892) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421349)

Ballmer was supposed to fucking kill Google. He's like Chuck Norris and stuff ... only with chairs. No way is this happening. I won't believe it. Slashdot is all lies.

Re:I don't believe it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25421443)

Really? The chair and Chuck Norris joke in the same comment? Could you please take humor to an even lower level please?

Re:I don't believe it (1, Flamebait)

garett_spencley (193892) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421511)

Thank-you. I was wondering for the life of me, regardless of how unsuccessful the attempt at humour may have been, how anyone could possibly flame me over it (thus deserving the -1 flamebait). Now I know.

Re:I don't believe it (1)

dark42 (1085797) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421925)

I just needed to post to remove the overrated, i wanted to mod funny. (THey're right next to each other)

Re:I don't believe it (4, Funny)

dark42 (1085797) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421921)

Chuck Norris doesn't need chairs, if he needs to sit down, he just grabs the nearest person and shapes their backbone into a chair.

LIES! (1)

mrSteveBallmer (1345863) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421411)

If you actually bother to read what I said, I said that Google was no problem and that nobody used this crap! OpenOffice is far more of a problem! http://fakesteveballmer.blogspot.com/ [blogspot.com]

"Good at advertising" (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25421533)

This, from the company that shouts "let us innovate!" The quality of their products has been surplanted by the quality of their advertising.

In twenty years Econ 101 classes will use the history of Microsoft Corp. as an example of how to destroy a company, even one that had a legal monopoly.

This is a not true (5, Interesting)

tkrotchko (124118) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421571)

I was there at the talk. What Ballmer said (and I'm paraphrasing) is that Google Apps have no audience; user growth plateaued months ago and that in their (MS's) own studies almost all college students buy MS Office and use it. He said the only time students are using Google Apps is when they need to collaborate on projects but he talked about how MS is working to beef up their own collaboration tools in Office 2007/08.

Really guys, this is reaching.

Ballmer is a good entertaining speaker, and Gartner analysts are not going to outfox the guy.

Re:This is a not true (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25421583)

Bullshit. MS == Sucks, that's all we care about.

Re:This is a not true (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25421711)

Of course it's misleading and not what was said at all. Look at who submitted the story...

You must be new here. Basically, anything that twitter or the 14 other twitter sockpuppets says only has about a 1% chance of having a shred of truth to it.

Balmer's No Growth Claims are a Lie. (1, Troll)

twitter (104583) | more than 5 years ago | (#25422001)

Google says Sweaty B is full of shit [nwsource.com] about "flat" growth. Par for the course, he used the wrong metric and then blew it out of proportion. That's not nearly as interesting as his admission of growth in the places M$ cares about most and the reasons he thinks the growth has happened, so they can share. Passing things back and forth in email with brittle formats is not nearly as easy as having it online in an easy and flexible format like ODF. Yes, he's also afraid of Open Office. All of this is well deserved bad news form M$ and their ancient file format monopoly.

Sorry twitter. (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25422047)

Everything you say must be considered a lie. You lost your credibility a long [slashdot.org] time ago. The only reason this story made it to the front page after your well-deserved yearlong blacklisting is because you had to misrepresent what the article said, and the /. editor happens to be relatively new, so he doesn't know about you.

Why don't you get a blog or something? You can use all those things you learned from the FUDster in Chief Roy like "SweatyB" and "Silverblight", and you won't have to put up with the collective derision and ridicule of the largest free software community in the world.

Really, think about it.

Re:This is a not true (1)

_ivy_ivy_ (1081273) | more than 5 years ago | (#25422193)

...in their (MS's) own studies almost all college students buy MS Office and use it.

Perhaps this is true because MS sells Office on college campuses for a fair price, something like $99.

Re:This is a not true (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25422343)

I find it funny that they think that college students buy Office.
Number of people i go to university with: many.
Number of them that i know who have paid for office: 0.

quick comparison (2, Insightful)

British (51765) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421643)

Google Office-like apps: Netbook
MS Office: bloated pig laptop that cost $3K.

I'm just fine with the Google Apps. All the extra features that the latest revision of MS Office has that Google doesn't don't ever get any usage from me anyways.

Re:quick comparison (1)

techno-vampire (666512) | more than 5 years ago | (#25422021)

MS Office: bloated pig laptop that cost $3K.

And now, if TFA can be believed, Ballmer is going to put lipstick on it.

Ugh (5, Insightful)

jav1231 (539129) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421811)

As much as I am loath to say this, I seriously doubt Microsoft has to worry about Google-apps. Corp-America is not going to go Google-apps. But mind you, they WILL worry. Because Microsoft is so fucking egotistical as a company they can't envision anyone having something successful besides them. It pisses them off, esp. Balmer. They just can't accept that they should stick to what they're good at (were good?). If they put as much effort into making Windows better it WOULD be. They chased the search market in vain and the mp3 player in vain. They're a spoiled company that thinks they should have it because they want it. Microsoft never innovates. They copy or buy. They usually fail at copying. The XBox is a noted example of something they copied and succeeded at gaining market. Keep at it, MS! Pursue! The more money you waste on shit like online apps the more that won't go into Windows! Which is fine. The world would be better off if more people would move on to another OS.

"... if we're good at adververtising ... " (2, Insightful)

asifyoucare (302582) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421853)

And there's the problem with Ballmer. How about competing by making a better product?

Re: "... if we're good at adververtising ... " (1)

Saffaya (702234) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421973)

Advertising worked so well for sony and the PS2. Impeding sales of the best console of the time that had an incredible line-up (the DreamCast) by using only shallow promises of "Real time Toy Story graphics" and "connected to high speed networks" when in reality it took the PS2 two years to get any valuable game and it didn't ship with any online interface.

Microsoft are the other masters of the marketng hype. If they start pushing Windows 7 now, they will at least sell as many as Vista did, regardless of the product's qualities.

MS Office file formats are becoming the odd ones (4, Interesting)

gelfling (6534) | more than 5 years ago | (#25421929)

In my firm, which is a Fortune 50 company, we're actively abandoning MS Office for our own modification of Open Office. In fact OO3 does everything better - it handles all the problems of earlier versions like embedded OLE objects, it handles all our all 'legacy' junk AND it handles all of the various MS Office 2007 file formats which, as everyone knows were invented JUST to force people to lock in and upgrade. In fact all those Office 2007 formats are becoming the weird occasional exception for us as we move to ODF and such. Mostly we use MS Office 2007 formats as a required translation step from DOC to ODF since OO3 handles it that way by default: DOC > DOCX > ODF for instance.

So being weird and unique, Balmer, we don't care. Soon MS Office will be just another legacy format we keep around for archival purposes like Lotus Wordpro, 123, AmiPro and the like. Good luck with that, Steve.

Way to go MS (1)

mysidia (191772) | more than 5 years ago | (#25422143)

Admission that they have a problem is the first step to recovery. But the road is long, and they have 11 steps left.

  1. Admitting they have a problem (CHECK)
  2. Come to believe in a greater power that can set things right for them (Linux community)
  3. Turn their existence over to the greater power
  4. Reflect on their past actions
  5. Admit their past errors
  6. Prepare to seek assistance of the greater power
  7. Beg the greater power (Linux/OOo Community) for forgiveness
  8. Make a list of those harmed by their actions
  9. Make direct amends and reparations wherever possible
  10. Continue to examine and rectify any wrongs
  11. Seek further enlightenment from the greater power (Linux/OOo Community)
  12. Help others that suffered the same problems...(such as by buying out said patent-holding-companies and open sourcing their product and withdrawing their shills from standards bodies)

...

The Windows phenomenon (1)

pembo13 (770295) | more than 5 years ago | (#25422177)

I find the Windows phenomenon to be quite interesting, almost depressing. There are very few things that Microsoft Windows clearly does better than Mac/Linux. There are a few things it simply does differently, and there are a lot of things it plane sucks at. Yet somehow, it manages to be "the" operating system. One of it's competitors is available both commercially and for free, another is available commercially. It doesn't even seem (in my experiences) to be easier to develop for Windows any more.

The only thing Windows seems to do well is be Windows, and while that's tough to compete with, it's not impossible.

Termination (1)

bozojoe (102606) | more than 5 years ago | (#25422197)

With all the bad press Ballmer delivers for Microsoft, I'm surprised the board hasn't fired him.

Stop complaining and do something (1, Insightful)

Twillerror (536681) | more than 5 years ago | (#25422351)

Sharepoint is a decent at storing word documents and making them searchable. Many companies are using it.

So why don't we write something simliar for Open Office that does the same thing as google apps. Yah it sucks to have to setup a server, but if it's open and runs on linux then it won't be.

I think this represents a major issue with open source...it's for developers. We need developers to stop caring about themselves and think about avergage business uers...a hard boring thing to do I know.

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