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Microsoft Feared Mac Vs. Vista In '05

CmdrTaco posted more than 5 years ago | from the not-so-much-any-more dept.

Microsoft 652

CWmike writes "Gregg Keizer sifted through many threads of e-mails released under the 'Vista Capable' lawsuit to dig up this jewel...More than a year before Windows Vista's release — and long before Apple started poking fun at the OS — Microsoft officials were already worried about comparisons between Mac OS X and Vista. An e-mail thread from October 2005 showed that an article in the Wall Street Journal by Walt Mossberg grabbed the attention of managers at Microsoft. In a column headlined What PC to Buy If You Are Planning On a Vista Upgrade, Mossberg alarmed one Windows manager who forwarded a bit from the column.... 'You won't have to worry about Vista if you buy one of Apple Computer's Macintosh computers, which don't run Windows,' Mossberg had written. 'Every mainstream consumer doing typical tasks should consider the Mac. Its operating system, called Tiger, is better and more secure than Windows XP, and already contains most of the key features promised for Vista.' Warrier added a comment of his own: 'A premium experience as defined by Walt = Apple. This is why we need to address [the column].'"

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I feel like the more people that use MAC... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25818619)

...dumbs down society as a whole even more.

Re:I feel like the more people that use MAC... (5, Funny)

0100010001010011 (652467) | more than 5 years ago | (#25818891)

I would have gotten hooked Linux if it wasn't for OS X. Terminal.app sitting in the Utilities folder is like a drug pusher. First it starts out with a little 'ls' and 'mv'. Then you learn to SSH and X11 forward. Then come the shell scripts and built in gcc.

Oh god, and then you discover screen and it's all over. You're hooked.

I'm now a CLI junkie. I get my fix from my debian rtorrent machine that gives me my movies and now I'm building a home automation center from NSLU2 and 1-Wire. My MacBook Pro starts Terminal.app on start.

Parents keep your kids away from Apple, they could be come CLI Junkies. Vista is the one true path to salvation.

Re:I feel like the more people that use MAC... (0)

nawcom (941663) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819013)

Parents keep your kids away from Apple, they could be come CLI Junkies. Vista is the one true path to salvation.

Gahh!!! If you follow the downward spiral even more you might end up watching those movies you downloaded with rtorrent with mplayer via aalib [oreilly.com] !!! You might as well sell your sole to Richard Stall..erm Satan!!

heh :-P

Re:I feel like the more people that use MAC... (3, Informative)

0100010001010011 (652467) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819405)

mplayer -ontop -cache 102400 $drag and drop video here from NFS share$

Only way to watch videos in bed/couch. Never have to worry about Firefox or what ever being in front of the video. Caches enough to watch the movie without hiccups.

Although aalib gives new meaning to ASCII Porn.

Re:I feel like the more people that use MAC... (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25819459)

You might as well sell your sole to Richard Stall..erm Satan!!/p>

Why would Satan, or Stallman for that matter, do with one of his shoes??

Re:I feel like the more people that use MAC... (4, Funny)

Smidge207 (1278042) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819085)

CLITerminal.app Junkies.

So, Monsieur Trollaxor, you're saying they could become clit junkies?

=Smidge=

What Microsoft should really have considered (1, Insightful)

Moryath (553296) | more than 5 years ago | (#25818637)

What Microsoft should really have considered was why, even before they released it, customers were ready to say NO to Vista.

It's been a huge albatross around their neck. It's Windows ME 2.0, has gotten the same response (and even MS eventually had to list Windows ME as "Do Not Use") and yet the consumer is getting fucked by MS's trying to kill off XP and force them to install the Vista Virus instead.

The "Aero" interface is a standing joke; the supposed "security" of Vista is laughable compared to simply keeping XP properly updated and behind a NAT at home; and the performance hit it takes to run is incredible. Vista is half as fast as XP on the same hardware, that's reason enough not to use it even before all the other crap and nonsense.

Re:What Microsoft should really have considered (1)

Smidge207 (1278042) | more than 5 years ago | (#25818765)

(and even MS eventually had to list Windows ME as "Do Not Use")

Oh god. The stupid. It burns. Need to calm myself...

Um, sorry, Monsieur Trollaxor, but could you cite a source for this outrareuous claim? Tks.

=Smidge=

Re:What Microsoft should really have considered (1)

FireXtol (1262832) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819149)

I'm guessing Microsoft never, ever said this(unless you badly re-word an end of product cycle). That would be akin to Apple using truthful advertising. Or the PC-teacher guy on TV saying "Please DON'T use my product"

It would mean disaster for business.

Re:What Microsoft should really have considered (2, Informative)

jgtg32a (1173373) | more than 5 years ago | (#25818775)

And Vista is faster than XP on the proper hardware ie Dual Core, 4GB+ ram

Re:What Microsoft should really have considered (5, Informative)

pcfixer (1391539) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819041)

This is simply not true. Vista is not faster than XP in almost any respect. Any computer with identical hardware will run Windows XP faster than Vista. Period. While service pack 1 has helped somewhat, Vista still lags behind XP. There have been many reviews to demonstrate this, most recently in Maximum PC. Dont delude yourselft into thinking that you are using Vista because it is faster. It isnt. www.lapcfixer.com

Re:What Microsoft should really have considered (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25819345)

You can make that argument when any new major iteration of Windows comes out.

Windows 95 is slower than Windows 3.1 on the same hardware.

Windows 3.1 is slower than Windows 1.0 on the same hardware.

The key here is the phrase 'on the same hardware'. As operating systems do more, they take more hardware to perform adequately. And it's not a Windows thing, it's a MacOS thing and a Linux thing.

Re:What Microsoft should really have considered (0, Flamebait)

Moryath (553296) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819373)

Pray tell, what alternate universe are you from wherein this is true?

I've done the test on brand new boxes we get in. Quad-core (not simply dual), 4GB RAM. Vista is STILL slower than XP even on these beasts.

Or are you talking Vista 64-bit Edition, aka "I'm not compatible with jack crap and not even NVidia or ATi have fully working drivers for me" edition?

Re:What Microsoft should really have considered (5, Funny)

sakdoctor (1087155) | more than 5 years ago | (#25818777)

It's not fair to call vista a virus.
Viruses are some of the tiniest and most efficient pieces of code written.

Re:What Microsoft should really have considered (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25819047)

-1 older than dirt

Re:What Microsoft should really have considered (-1, Offtopic)

Sique (173459) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819261)

s/Viruses are some/A successful virus is one/g

PS: Do avoid a plural of virus at all cost. The latin word virus is a singularitantum and has no latin plural.

Re:What Microsoft should really have considered (0, Offtopic)

creepynut (933825) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819437)

I'm sorry, what does that have to do with the English word virus?

Re:What Microsoft should really have considered (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25819329)

... Because they do EXACTLY what they're supposed to do, well

You haven't seen some viruses (3, Funny)

Moraelin (679338) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819389)

You haven't seen some viruses. I seem to remember, back in the dark ages of floppies, long before the internet, when 1.44 MB was all the space on a floppy and viruses were supposed to go unnoticed on one so they could spread, someone had written a 100K virus in Clipper. Or one of the similar DBase2-like databases. In an age of 512 _byte_ viruses, or where even complex and sophisticated ones were measured in single digit kilobytes, that was fucking huge. It's akin to having a 100 MB virus nowadays. In fact, it's akin to nowadays writing a virus in Java and distributing it together with a JDK.

So in all fairness, you can't generalize like that. Just because Vista is the most extreme case of a bloated and inefficient virus, doesn't mean there weren't other viruses that were only slightly less bloated and inefficient before ;)

Re:What Microsoft should really have considered (4, Insightful)

Ethanol-fueled (1125189) | more than 5 years ago | (#25818849)

the supposed "security" of Vista is laughable

Excellent comment. Those of us who work in computer repair or who have porn-addicted friends know that getting malware on Vista is as easy as getting malware on any other version of Windows, the sole difference being that the UAC dialog(if enabled) pops up 5 times a second instead of 5 times a minute.

Vista is an epic fail! They moved everything around and added unnecessary menu options making navigation a nightmare for people familiar with prior versions. Bold moves in changing the layout for Vista and the latest Office, though it turned their user experience into a counterintuitive nightmare!

Re:What Microsoft should really have considered (2, Insightful)

elashish14 (1302231) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819247)

Excuse me? I thought the people who work in computer repair ARE the ones with porn-addicted friends.

-cough- Geek Squad [slashdot.org] -cough-

Why People Said No to Vista (5, Insightful)

mfh (56) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819093)

What Microsoft should really have considered was why, even before they released it, customers were ready to say NO to Vista.

Microsoft didn't sell the reason people needed Vista. They polished a dashboard up with some glassy looking graphics and slapped a pricetag on it. That's not relevant to 99% of users. Most people use their computers for the internet, or for writing letters. Could Vista do anything like that better than XP? No. And there's your answer.

If Microsoft wanted to sell Vista, they should have examined what the main concerns are of people and acted on them. Most people don't care about what is happening behind the scenes... that's what nerds are for. Most people care about what the computers can do for them.

Now if they wanted to sell Vista, they should have got Jerry Seinfeld to do the Vista commercials from the beginning, and keep Bill Gates out of them. Seinfeld would simply sell the reason people need to upgrade to Vista which is for security and for expanded multi-media capability.

Jerry could have also addressed most of the user objections to Vista openly and with a dash of dry comedy that people tend to admire in the comedian.

But they chose to do a faceless monolithic kind of ad campaign, to combat Apple's ads but that actually made people think about how good Apple is compared to windows which was the kicker-backfire!!!! OMG yes.

Re:What Microsoft should really have considered (1)

LWATCDR (28044) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819283)

I think your a bit over the top.
I just built my wife a new PC and we decided that we would put Vista 64 on it as a test. She is very computer literate and often boots into Linux. She likes it okay so far. The problem with Vista is that the pain is not worth the gain. My wife had all new hardware and we are using SP1. Her system has been stable and pretty fast. Is it better then XP? Not really it is really just different.

Re:What Microsoft should really have considered (1)

girlintraining (1395911) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819325)

> What Microsoft should really have considered was why, even before they released it, customers were ready to say NO to Vista.

I'd mod you "+5, Uncomfortable Truth" if I could for this. The disconnect between management, marketing, and engineering is staggering. They need to address this before they commit to anything again.

Re:What Microsoft should really have considered (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25819387)

Welcome to late 2008! Where you're just full of a bullshit!

Their fears were justified. (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25818645)

When you release an OS as fatally flawed as Vista, especially when you have proven track record of foisting poorly written junk on your customers and making them beta-test it for free, you should be afraid when a viable alternative surfaces.

Re:Their fears were justified. (0, Flamebait)

smilindog2000 (907665) | more than 5 years ago | (#25818975)

I agree, though Apple naturally dropped the opportunity to really take on Microsoft. If Apple would simply allow their OS to run on generic PCs, Microsoft would have a true competitor. As is, all Microsoft has to do is change their look every so often, and they'll maintain their monopoly. Steve Jobs is extending this stupidity to the iPhone, which I predict will lose the market-share wars to Android over the next few years. It's Mac vs Windows 3.1 all over again.

Re:Their fears were justified. (1)

socsoc (1116769) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819201)

Apple's hardware restriction helps them code for a positive user experience. It would get really bloated if it had to "just work" with every piece of hardware out there. I know *nix flavors work with many pieces of crap, but you have to be savvy to get it going. I totally agree with the Android prediction. Also, i have a Dell running OS X... albeit poorly.

Re:Their fears were justified. (1)

sqlrob (173498) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819241)

It isn't already bloated? Have you seen the size of the printer driver install set that's installed by default? Yeesh.

Re:Their fears were justified. (1)

socsoc (1116769) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819311)

That's true and I wish it installed zero by default. There presence actually confuses my users and I usually have other drivers that I prefer them to use anyway.

Re:Their fears were justified. (1)

socsoc (1116769) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819391)

s/there/their/ i am an idiot

Re:Their fears were justified. (5, Insightful)

Sique (173459) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819305)

If Apple would simply allow their OS to run on generic PCs, Microsoft would have a true competitor.

If Apple would allow their OS to run on generic PCs, they would fall into a support hell.

Re:Their fears were justified. (3, Insightful)

Golias (176380) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819369)

I agree, though Apple naturally dropped the opportunity to really take on Microsoft. If Apple would simply allow their OS to run on generic PCs, Microsoft would have a true competitor.

This old canard again?

Nobody makes Big Money on desktop operating systems. Microsoft uses theirs to leverage sales of MS-Office and their enterprise solutions.

Apple uses theirs to sell hardware.

The only people who get worked up about the "OS wars" are fanboys. Everybody at Apple and Microsoft is too busy making money to care.

Re:Their fears were justified. (4, Insightful)

bonch (38532) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819371)

If Apple would simply allow their OS to run on generic PCs, Microsoft would have a true competitor.

Apple makes their money as a hardware vendor. People would just pirate the OS, and everyone else would rather just run Windows on their PCs and have all their apps. Apple would fade away if you were running the company.

Oh, and the iPhone isn't going anywhere. THAT'S how Apple is taking on Microsoft--invading the mobile market where PCs are inevitably headed. Their laptop sales go up every year, and they have portable media and cell phones.

Re:Their fears were justified. (4, Insightful)

MightyYar (622222) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819439)

If Apple would simply allow their OS to run on generic PCs, Microsoft would have a true competitor.

People say this, but Apple would have to take on a lot of expense to support generic hardware. They'd have to massively upgrade their test procedures, spend huge amounts of development time on drivers, hire reams of new tech support... unless their market share spiked, there is no way that they could justify the expense. Either that or the "generic" OS would cost a lot more than it does today.

Apple is perfectly happy with their niche of selling only high-margin products. Dell has margins of under 5%, Apple is over 14%. MS is 29%, for comparison. Of course, Apple could never get to that high of a number since MS is only able to price gouge due to their monopoly. It would be kind of fun to see how cheap Windows got if Apple entered the marketplace. We're already seeing it in sub-notebooks where the monopoly was destroyed.

As a bonus, Apple doesn't get called "unstable" every time the crappy $300 Dell hardware flakes out.

Re:Their fears were justified. (1)

zigziggityzoo (915650) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819465)

It's not so stupid when you consider both Apple and Google's cash on-hand. Apple has $25bn in the bank, Google: $14.5bn.

News??? (4, Insightful)

theaveng (1243528) | more than 5 years ago | (#25818727)

Uh... this is news? Any good businessman always watches the competition and tries to estimate how many customers might switchover. That's not "fear". That's just good old commonsense.

Re:News??? (2, Interesting)

nawcom (941663) | more than 5 years ago | (#25818899)

Uh... this is news? Any good businessman always watches the competition and tries to estimate how many customers might switchover. That's not "fear". That's just good old commonsense.

It's news because people forget. Remember when it was found out that the mailed anthrax came from the US's own gov labs? People have already forgotten that too. People need to be reminded of the monopolistic software prison they live in. They don't have to use Windows, and there is better software out there.

Re:News??? (5, Funny)

Golias (176380) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819463)

People need to be reminded of the monopolistic software prison they live in. They don't have to use Windows, and there is better software out there.

If you can leave any time you like, it's not a prison. It's just a really shitty hotel.

Re:News??? (5, Insightful)

je ne sais quoi (987177) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819209)

It's news because it's not every day that we get to be party to these discussions. We're only finding out because of a law suit. As a linux/mac fanboy, I would be just as interested if not more so if we got the read the same discussions about Steve Jobs and Co. discussing how they were going to beat windows, and I read about the GNU and linux guru discussions about this subject when they make the front page of slashdot. (See, linux is open source, so the discussions are easier to access. :) ) So it's news, I'm interested in it.

Also, there's a sense, at least to many on slashdot, that Microsoft owes its position not to good software, but to its monopoly status. Thus, if the MS execs are concerned about the competition, it means maybe the end of the windows domination is that much closer.

Re:News??? (1)

dubbreak (623656) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819375)

..this is news?

I guess this falls under the general category of stuff that matters...

Mac users can't take a joke. (1)

FireXtol (1262832) | more than 5 years ago | (#25818771)

Who can blame them?! No one wants their product to be compared to a Mac!

Re:Mac users can't take a joke. (2, Interesting)

smilindog2000 (907665) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819081)

I think that's true of the Mac hardware, but I'll take Ubuntu over any recent Mac OS. I'd say the same thing of the iPhone - my T-Mobile G1 hardware sucks in comparison, but the Android OS is a fine competitor.

I think Dell loves to compare their products to Macs. Same features, at half the price.

Broken premise (5, Insightful)

$RANDOMLUSER (804576) | more than 5 years ago | (#25818783)

Mossberg says:

Vista, formerly known by its code name of Longhorn, is due out about a year from now, well within the lifetime of any PC you purchase today. I assume most consumers running Windows will want to upgrade to Vista.

Which is just plain wrong. Consumers don't upgrade operating systems. They use the one that came with the box until they need a new box. Techno-nerds and enterprises upgrade operating syatems. In the case of Vista, enterprises have stayed away in droves.

Re:Broken premise (5, Insightful)

qoncept (599709) | more than 5 years ago | (#25818943)

Wow, that's a pretty bold assertion with absolutely no evidence to back it up. I don't have any numbers, but I'll go ahead and base my entire argument on personal opinion like you have. I think you're wrong. I'm sure that less people buy operating systems to upgrade themselves than buy them OEM with a new computer, and I know businesses have avoided Vista, and after the fact, when everyone found out for sure that Vista was garbage they stayed away, but "Consumers don't upgrade operating systems" is just straight up silly. The simple fact that Best Buy has them for sale says you are wrong. People do it, and enough do it that Microsoft markets to them.

And, as an aside, business do upgrade operating systems. But not immediately. They give them time, wait for bug fixes and evidence that the platform is stable. With Vista, that never happened, so they didn't upgrade.

Re:Broken premise (2, Insightful)

$RANDOMLUSER (804576) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819077)

No, I really don't think that's silly. People (enterprises included) generally upgrade operating systems as part of a new machine purchase. The number of people who buy the latest Windows to upgrade an existing machine are a vanishingly small portion of the total licenses sold.

Re:Broken premise (4, Insightful)

MadKeithV (102058) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819195)

And that's mostly because Windows is incredibly expensive unless it's OEM. Then it's just really expensive.
Vista Ultimate was what, like â600 retail when it first came out?

Re:Broken premise (1)

MrMickS (568778) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819225)

I don't agree. Personal experience says that people that just buy a computer and don't have any real computer knowledge don't upgrade their operating system. They might buy a new copy because they've hosed their machine and lost the OEM copy that was on the special partition because a friend 'helped' them and formatted the disk. OS upgrades are few and far between though.

Re:Broken premise (1)

martin_henry (1032656) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819297)

I work for a major US electric utility and I can testify that my laptop (leased in June 08) had Vista taken off and XP installed. It still has the Vista sticker on the bottom, even.

Broken ad campaign (2, Insightful)

hellfire (86129) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819235)

In the case of Vista, enterprises have stayed away in droves.

Which is a point I've been making for months to pro Vista people who don't understand why this is such a disaster and keep claiming "Vista isn't that bad." What they don't understand is that for the business market, Vista is extraordinarily bad!! That's extraordinarily bad for Microsoft, and which is their main source of income. Business are still buying XP licenses for new machines, but they aren't upgrading current machines to Vista because it's an admin nightmare and companies have lost complete trust in Vista.

Microsoft has then been trying to fix the problem by putting out odd consumer ads? The problem isn't primarily with consumers, which is why their ad campaign is broken, too.

Re:Broken premise (1)

QuantumRiff (120817) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819289)

Your argument makes the case even worse for MS. If you purchase a new Mac, instead of a new Dell when it is time to upgrade, Apple gets the profits from both the hardware and OS. If you purchase a new Dell, Dell gets the hardware profits, and MS gets another $20 or so.

Re:Broken premise (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819429)

It is likely that Apple treats the OS installed onto a new machine as a cost and thus makes no profit on it.

You could play semantic games and argue that the OS justifies some part of the markup on the machine, but that's just a semantic game.

Re:Broken premise (1)

140Mandak262Jamuna (970587) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819377)

Not even in corporate environment most people, users, IT dept upgrade the OS. The IT dept "supports" older versions of the OS till all these boxes die. They might upgrade software, ACAD or Ansys WorkBench or Word etc. But mass upgrade of the OS of all the machines in the network? Hardly ever done.

Microsoft Created Much of the Comparison (4, Interesting)

spoot (104183) | more than 5 years ago | (#25818787)

I'm sure many will remember the comparisons of the screen shots and betas for Vista vs. OS X. It was remarkable how much Vista looked like OS X. In both feature (bloat) and GUI. Microsoft is as much, if not more, to blame for the feature comparison. Redmond continued to flaunt using Cupertino as their proxy R&D. When Microsoft finally shipped the goods, the comparisons it seems, were only skin deep.

Walt Mossberg.... (-1, Troll)

initdeep (1073290) | more than 5 years ago | (#25818797)

Seriously?!?!
WTF!

Dude has his head so far up Jobs' ass that he can only see when Jobs smiles.

And even the people who read the WSJ think he's a fucktard.

Still true (4, Interesting)

Foofoobar (318279) | more than 5 years ago | (#25818805)

With a BSD backend, a controlled hardware architecture and the ability to run tools from all platforms via MacPorts or VMWare or Wine, Mac has shown it is not only a better user experience in th long run but a far lower maintenance computer. There are fewer problems due to the maintained hardware architecture by Apple and no viruses to speak of due to sandboxing and BSD's UNIX background.

It does hav bugs like any OS which luckily they are fairly quick to address, and they have a much faster turn around for new versions of the OS (one every year versus every 3-5 years for Windows).

Would I prefer it to be more open like Linux? Oh hell yes especially now that they are adopting HDCP and other DRM related technologies. I suspect however that the Vista fiasco and Netbooks have caused enough people to consider a switch to Linux and with Apple embracing OpenGL for game development on iPhone and iTouch, it will only be a matter of time before it is on equal footing as a game platform and openGL is equally considered thus giving Linux a footup as well; afterall, Blizzard already has admitted to having a Linux Warcraft client internally that they haven't released.

Re:Still true (1, Offtopic)

crmarvin42 (652893) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819115)

Your sig is Awsome and surprsingly relevant.

Re:Still true (0, Troll)

sqlrob (173498) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819395)

It does hav bugs like any OS which luckily they are fairly quick to address

Riiggghht. Like the Finder security flaw that I found that was definitely in 10.4 and 10.5 and probably all the way back. They closed it as "enhancement".

Trailing Edge Technology (2, Interesting)

Shuh (13578) | more than 5 years ago | (#25818809)

Microsoft has a lot to worry about. When it has come to the big technology shifts, DOS and later Windows have always been trailing-edge technology.

Re:Trailing Edge Technology (5, Insightful)

Locutus (9039) | more than 5 years ago | (#25818989)

Microsoft knows this and they know all about Tiger, they copied alot of it. What Microsoft was concerned about was rogue press saying things like Mossberg wrote. Anyone who knows technology over the last 20 years knows that Microsoft is a marketing company before they are a tech company and this email just shows that. 'Don't let the public know there is something better' is all this says and that is SOP for Microsoft. IMO

LoB

Re:Trailing Edge Technology (1)

MightyMartian (840721) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819139)

What Microsoft was concerned about was rogue press saying things like Mossberg wrote

Then they should do what they did twenty years ago when Chicago/Win95 was nothing more than artists renderings; buy up all the computer magazines or turn the publishers into whores with free stuff, and then you'll get all the Vista-friendly press you want.

Tiget may be better than Vista, but (3, Insightful)

rehtonAesoohC (954490) | more than 5 years ago | (#25818839)

I'm getting really annoyed at the Mac commercials that constantly slam PC's.

I'm the kind of person who hates it when politicians run smear campaigns and TV ads slandering the opposition, and for Apple to be doing this for their TV ads seems unprofessional and childish.

If you want to highlight your product, great! Do so, and let the product speak for itself. People who are so fed up with Microsoft will see a commercial highlighting the Mac's features, and they will generally go research it. I have been put off by the commercials, and any interest I genuinely had in getting a Mac was completely destroyed.

Re:Tiget may be better than Vista, but (1)

furball (2853) | more than 5 years ago | (#25818907)

I think that once Steve Jobs is bored of swimming around in the billions of dollars that Apple has in the bank they'll go change the advertising.

Maybe something like this (2, Funny)

ciaohound (118419) | more than 5 years ago | (#25818983)

"Better ingredients. Better OS. Papa Steve's."

Re:Maybe something like this (1)

rehtonAesoohC (954490) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819285)

Haha, if I hadn't posted already - I'd mod that funny ;-)

Re:Tiget may be better than Vista, but (1)

FireXtol (1262832) | more than 5 years ago | (#25818959)

The superficiality is getting to you, my friend.
Be like the majority of us and dislike Mac because using it is like throwing a hotdog down a hallway.
I couldn't think of a better food analogy.... I'm sorry.

Re:Tiget may be better than Vista, but (1)

abigor (540274) | more than 5 years ago | (#25818965)

Here, let me get you some cheese to go with that whine.

Re:Tiget may be better than Vista, but (1)

N1AK (864906) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819017)

What on earth about this guy's post was flamebait? If you really have to mod it down go with redudant (which I could at least see the arguement for).
I actually agree with his point, negative adverts very rarely make me like the people paying for them. I admire a lot of things about Apple, but the sheer scale of the blind fanboyism displayed by so many Apple users has been enough to discourage me from their products (and I know that isn't logical, I just can't bring myself to associate with it).

Re:Tiget may be better than Vista, but (1)

rehtonAesoohC (954490) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819217)

If there's anything I've learned on Slashdot, it's that the moderation system is completely bonkers sometimes, haha.

I think most of the "Flamebait" and "Overrated" come from people who take it as a personal affront that I said that I don't like the way Apple did something.

THE HORROR!

Re:Tiget may be better than Vista, but (1)

je ne sais quoi (987177) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819021)

Hahahaha, I'm sorry, I just had to laugh at your portrayal of Microsoft as an innocent victim. Okay, we can debate about the merits of smear campaigns and if the apple ads are a smear campaign, although I find them funny (but I use linux when I have a choice, then macs, and if I have no choice I use windows). But let's forget about all that and think about who you're defending! They're a convicted monopolist. How many times in just the last decade have we sat on slashdot and read about the various e-mails because Microsoft it's in court yet again on charges of "not playing fair"? At least two. Apple is not perfect, they've done their share of dumb anti-competitive stuff (and they seem to be getting worse), but they've got a ways to go until they reach the level of Microsoft corruption and dirty tricks.

Re:Tiget may be better than Vista, but (1)

rehtonAesoohC (954490) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819185)

I never portrayed Microsoft as an innocent victim... I said that I despise smear campaigns. I don't care which side runs them... The Microsoft ads (while saying "wheee I'm a PC!") at least aren't running around going "MAC'S SUCK!"

And furthermore, I wasn't comparing Microsoft to Apple... All I was saying is that I hate their advertising.

Re:Tiget may be better than Vista, but (5, Interesting)

gmor (769112) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819097)

I'm getting really annoyed at the Mac commercials that constantly slam PC's.

I get the opposite reaction. I find Apple's ads cute, fun, and surprisingly truthful as Microsoft runs desperate "I'm a PC, so I'm nowhere near my computer" ads.

And the iPhone and iPod Touch ads are musical, elegant, and actually make me want to buy the device, as opposed to the other carriers' ads that show dominoes of inventory but no one doing anything cool with their phones.

Re:Tiget may be better than Vista, but (1)

rehtonAesoohC (954490) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819271)

I completely agree with you about the iPhone and iPod touch ads... The iPhone ads actually have made me very interested in buying an iPhone. So why couldn't they have done the same thing with their computers? Obviously their advertising for other things are working just fine...

Old News (1)

ITJC68 (1370229) | more than 5 years ago | (#25818841)

This is old news and obvious FUD. Mac OS X has its place for graphic design people among others. Nothing wrong with that. Vista's failure is not the operating system itself but more with the system requirements and issues that should have been corrected before release. To compare Vista of then to Vista now is completely different. Vista 64 bit is very stable and with 4 gigs of ram runs very well. The old saying still applies as it does in the Mac world. If your system is more than 1 or 2 years old consider purchasing a new system or build a new one yourself and do the research. I did research before building my system and I have nothing but praise for the operating system. It took some time to get used to the new features but given a real use trial I wouldn't go back to XP. And for the flames that will inevitably follow this post. I also use and recommend Ubuntu Linux as well. Ubuntu has been by far the best experience using a computer outside of the M$ realm that I have had thus far and I have tried many Linux flavors. I just felt the need to set the record straight that not everyone who reads comments and stories on /. are M$ haters or someone who had a bad experience with Vista and now tells anyone who uses it they are stupid (idiots).

Re:Old News (1)

AvitarX (172628) | more than 5 years ago | (#25818997)

Max OS X has its place amongst graphic design people that don't need huge amounts of RAM for photo editing.

CS4 being 64-bit and offering GPU acceleration tips the scale heavily to PC for design work. Many 3D packages appear to support PC first OS X second too.

Re:Old News (1)

Locutus (9039) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819117)

"Vista's failure not the operating system itself but more the system requirements"? hint: these two are joined at the hip, shoulder, and head.

and 4 gigs of ram for Vista to run fine on? I've got a server with 4 GB of ram and it also runs a half dozen virtual machines with one of them ran LTSP vm to drive 4 clients around the office. 4 gigs for Vista to run fine. ha

LoB

Old opinion (1)

CountBrass (590228) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819221)

The ninties called and they want their thinking back.

As desktop support... (2, Insightful)

lymond01 (314120) | more than 5 years ago | (#25818869)

So working at a University, I'd like to say that we have a lot of people throwing a lot of money at Mac hardware, only to turn around and install Bootcamp or Parallels so they can run the science software needed to do their work and research. And they use federal grants to do this. I'm thinking there should be an oversight committee to determine if a Mac is a necessary item (it almost never is) or if Linux or Windows will do the job more efficiently (they usually do).

$12,000 dual quad core Mac that we had to spend two months rewriting code to compile that worked fine on an old Linux cluster. The professor could have gotten a lot more parallel processing power if he'd gone with a newer cluster rather than a single, decked out Mac.

Re:As desktop support... (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25819303)

First, blaming Apple because whoever was making a purchase couldn't be bothered to grab an OS X machine and do a quick ./configure; make; makes no sense.

Second, if it is taking you two months to port to OS X, there is something seriously wrong with your code. No scientific app should suffer that lack of portability. And since there are many people using OS X in science (natively, not emulating windows), I'd say that two months and $12,000 spent to increase the population who can use your government grant supported software is time and money well spent.

Re:As desktop support... (5, Informative)

crmarvin42 (652893) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819313)

there should be an oversight committee to determine if a Mac is a necessary item

I'm sorry, that's just stupid. If a researcher feels they'll will be more productive using a mac with windows under emulation for the apps that need it who are you to judge?

I use a mac in a research setting at Purdue and run windows for a handful of Apps I rarely use. I probably fire windows up once every couple of months. I used to use it more frequently but apps like SAS, SPSS, and the windows version of Powerpoint are offered over the web via a CITRIX client so I don't need to waste disk space installing those apps locally anymore. However, if their had been the kind of unnecessary oversight you are suggesting I'd be SOL.

I get the impression from your post that you work for the researchers, but not as a researcher yourself. You are poorly equiped to decide which tools would best benefit the researcher unless you are the PI in question.

Re:As desktop support... (5, Insightful)

maxume (22995) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819315)

In general, funding oversight should focus on inputs and outputs, not process.

Assuming that the committee will know better than each and every researcher is a bad idea, and inputs and outputs are easy to measure, meaning that monitoring them will probably require less bureaucracy than making sure that all dollars are spent in 'approved' ways.

Mainstream consumer doing typical tasks (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25818877)

As long as that is confined to surfing the web and reading your email. Windows still has the natural monopoly on desktop apps.

I hope slashdot contines their fine editorial stance until Linux wins the desktop.

Don't fear GOOG, Kill It, Kill it DEAD (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25818933)

It's called SEO--search engine optimization--and it's pretty much all anyone working with Web sites ever talks about nowadays. You may think it consists of ways to trick the search engines, Google in particular, into giving you higher than usual page rankings. But in fact, it centers around the idea that Google sucks so much that companies think they need to use SEO to get the results they deserve.

By reverse-engineering the way Google operates, SEO experts can see how the process works. From a user's perspective, once you learn how Google does what it does, it's a miracle that you ever get the right results. And from my experience, the right results in many circumstances are nearly impossible to obtain--and may never be obtainable in the future.

Let's look at some of the problems that have developed over the years.

Inability to identify a home site. All the search engines have this habit, but often it is laughable. You'd think that if I were looking for Art Jenkins, and Art Jenkins had a Web site named Artjenkins.com, search engines would list that first, right? Most often this page is never listed anywhere.

Too much commerce, not enough information. There seems to be an underlying belief, especially at Google, that the only reason you go online is to buy something. People merely looking for information are a nuisance. This is made apparent anytime you look for information about a popular product. All you find are sites trying to sell you the product. Hey, here's a challenge: Ask Google to find you a site that honestly compares cell-phone plans and tells you which is best. Try it! All you get are thousands of sites with fake comparisons promoting something they are selling.

What's particularly bad about this is that the few honest sites trying to present information without SEO and all the trickery needed to get attention are put out of business; nobody ever finds those sites. The site you are pointed to should be the best site, not a mediocre popular site. This is the biggest flaw with page ranking.

Parked sites. Have you ever gone to look for something and found what seems like the perfect site near the top of the Google results? You click on it only to find one of those fake "parked" sites, where people park domain names, pack them with links to other sites, and hope for random clicks that pay them 10 cents each. How does page ranking, if it works, ever manage to give these bogus sites a high number?

Unrepeatable search results. Ever run a search a week later and get completely different results? In the end, you have to use the search history and hope you can find it. Can things change so drastically day-to-day that the search results vary to an extreme month-to-month? This is compounded by the weird results you get when you are logged in to Google. These are somehow customized for you? In what way?

Google sign-in changes a query's results to an extreme with no discernible benefit. Often two people are on a call trying to discuss something and both will try finding something online. The conversation often goes like this: "Here it is, I found it. Type in the search term 'ABCD Fix' and it's the fourth result listed." "I don't see it. The fourth one down is a pill company." "You typed in ABCD Fix, right?" "Yeah." This goes on for a while until you realize that one of the two people is logged into Google.

The solution to this entire mess, which is slowly worsening, is to "wikify" search results somehow without overdoing it. Yahoo! had a good idea when its search engine was actually a directory with segments "owned" by communities of experts. These people could isolate the best of breed, something Google has never managed to do. The basis for Google page-ranking is to equate popularity with quality, and once you look at the information developed by SEO experts, you learn that this strategy barely works.

We have to suffer until something better comes along, but there is at least one crucial fix that could be easily implemented: user flagging. Parked sites, for instance, could be flagged the way you flag spam on a message board or a miscategorized post on craigslist. The risk here is that creeps trying to shut down a specific site could swamp Google with false flags, so maintaining integrity would be difficult. People with their own agendas have already infiltrated and controlled aspects of craigslist and Wikipedia, unfortunately. On Wikipedia, for example, a group pushing the global-warming agenda prevents almost any post with contrary data or opinions, no matter how minor the point.

One suggestion floating around involves the semantic Web, which anticipates even more SEO tricks--and requires a certain level of honesty that can never be maintained. I suggest rethinking the basic organization of the Web itself, using the Google News concept. In other words, compartmentalize the Web to an extreme. Tagging might help. But you should be able just to search through a subsegment and check a box that eliminates merchants with faux-informational sites.

And speaking of check boxes, over the years there have been numerous attempts at creating an advanced search mechanism utilizing check boxes and a question-and-response AI network. You'd think that idea would have gotten further than it has. Hopefully, someone will conceptualize something new that works better than what we have today. The situation is just deteriorating too fast. Nevermind Apple.

OS X is no longer the only problem (4, Insightful)

CaptainPatent (1087643) | more than 5 years ago | (#25818957)

Sure MS may have been worried about OS X in 2005, but the problem runs much deeper now. Let's take a look back:

In 2005, Mac OS X was available and rating "better" as a desktop environment in many places, but in order to "upgrade" to OS X, it required purchase of all new hardware.

by 2008, Mac had adopted Intel x86-based processors and expanded support into the realm formerly controlled only by PC. While technically you still need to upgrade to Mac hardware according to the Mac OS X EULA, the validity of that claim is currently being questioned. Additionally Ubuntu and other Linux distros that make setup easy and are very user-friendly have started spawning and are also beginning to take a significant chunk out of MS's market share.

There may have been signs of things to come in 2005, but thinks look even more bleak for MS now unless they can get things together with Vista or at least Windows 7.

Re:OS X is no longer the only problem (1)

Fahrvergnuugen (700293) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819123)

You forgot to mention the Mobile version of OSX which is now in millions of pockets around the world.

Re:OS X is no longer the only problem (4, Informative)

nawcom (941663) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819275)

In 2005, Mac OS X was available and rating "better" as a desktop environment in many places, but in order to "upgrade" to OS X, it required purchase of all new hardware.

by 2008, Mac had adopted Intel x86-based processors and expanded support into the realm formerly controlled only by PC.

You really mean in 2001 Mac OS X was available and by 2005 Mac had adapted Intel processors - right? Your first 2 points confused the hell out of me.

WTF (-1, Redundant)

JackassJedi (1263412) | more than 5 years ago | (#25818973)

This is one of the worst summaries from at least this day. Was this just copy&pasted out of a bigger text or what?

Vista the bloated pig (4, Insightful)

ianare (1132971) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819073)

Russell went on to defend Vista, specifically its ability to "run on a very wide-ranging set of systems from the minimally capable to the incredibly capable," he said. "Apple doesn't do that."

Riiiiight. Apple was able to slim down OS X to run on an ARM smartphone, can MS do the same with Vista ? Oh yeah that's right, they had to extend the life of XP just for the netbook market, cause there's no way Vista could run on that hardware, and they were afraid of Linux taking over.
I can't see how this guy could think that, did he not ever use Vista ?

shooting the messenger... (5, Insightful)

Jodka (520060) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819079)

"A premium experience as defined by Walt = Apple. This is why we need to address [the column]."

That suggests that when Microsoft received reports of a competitor offering a superior product that executives regarded the reports themselves as the problem and not Microsoft's deficient offerings; Warrier writes of addressing Mossberg's column, not of addressing the problems with Microsoft's planning and development processes which led them to an inferior market position.

Blaming someone outside the organization is smart corporate politics because it does not make enemies inside your own organization who might retaliate against you. But then maybe that is the problem with Microsoft management, that it is full of shrewd corporate ladder-climbing types instead of inspired artists and engineers.

Can We? (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25819083)

Can we replace the pic of Bill with Ballmer throwing a chair?

Microsoft Bailout??? (2, Interesting)

Timtimes (730036) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819107)

Microsoft might be looking for a bailout right after Congress gets through with Detroit? Makes sense if you think about it. Both Microsoft and Detroit have (or should have known) for many, many years what was wrong with their products. Detroit ignored the fuel crises of the 70's and Microsoft ignored the instability and increasing difficulty users had keeping their systems stable. Other similarities exist between Detroit and Redmond, in that both seem unable to properly address the known issues in their product offerings. Vista puts a flashier face (lipstick on a pig - too soon?) on a flawed O/S and GM gives us a freakin' hybrid Tahoe? Yeah, and the people who made those craptastic decisions receive HUGE financial compensation and really don't give a rat's behind what you and I think. Don't worry though. I'm being a tad bit melodramatic. Microsoft, (like GM at one time...) has more money than God and is, in the current venacular...too large to fail. Enjoy.

features myth (5, Insightful)

brre (596949) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819111)

Why does Microsoft, and apparently Apple, believe what we've been waiting for is more features? I don't know a single consumer who is dissatisfied with their box because it lacks this or that feature. The consumers I know who are unhappy are unhappy with the user experience: box does something unexpected, unexplained, mysterious, unintended, or just plain wrong. So I don't understand the features war. I would think the vast majority of us aren't looking for the box to do something new and wonderful, but to stop doing things that are weird and obstructive.

Re:features myth (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25819347)

Apple users tend to find their OS doesn't do lots of weird or obstructive things, so they upgrade based on lists of fancy new features.

Windows users tend to find their OS does lots of weird or obstructive things, so they're more apt to upgrade to a version that does less of them.

MOD Parent UP (1)

PRMan (959735) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819409)

I couldn't have said it better myself. We just want the 30-second lockups, hard disk thrashing and other unexplained delays to go away and let us do our work. Unfortunately, Vista exacerbates all those problems instead of fixing them.

Re:features myth (1)

Timtimes (730036) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819417)

Some truth in there, but I believe that, from my perspective of having switched from 98 to OS/X a couple years ago, the major 'feature' is not having to piss with the O/S every other week or reboot the machine three times a day. Another feature is being able to look at my friends, who see me as a computer geek, and honestly say: "I wish I could help you with your, old, buggy, slow, POS, FITB Windows problem, but it's been years since I messed with them and I really don't have a clue......and without your original install CD.....sorry." Another evening saved from the tedium of birthing yet another complete Windows rebuild. Priceless. Enjoy.

Generalizations... (1)

El Lobo (994537) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819227)

Yes, I have a Mac. Yes I have 3 "PCs" (XP, Vista, Suse). I work with all four machines regularly. I really, really cannot understand why this generalization about the greatness of MacOs, like, everyone must like it. Yes, it's a good system but so are the other three as well. And actually OSX annoys the hell of me with it's mannerisms (well, MacOs 7, 8 and 9 used to annoy the hell out of me as well). Off all 4 OS I must say I like OSX the less. I may be a strange bird.

Ballmer! (5, Funny)

Hal_Porter (817932) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819229)

I will kill this Mossberg for you for ten million of your American dollars and a lifetime license for Windows XP.

Enough already! (4, Insightful)

nobodyman (90587) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819265)

Look, I know this is Slashdot and all, but honestly I'm starting to get microsoft-vista-embarassing-email-story fatigue. Ever since the Vista class-action exposed all of these internal Microsoft emails, people have been cherry-picking emails and making them into full-blown stories for months it seems.

I'm no Microsoft apologist, it's just that it's starting to get old. Yes, we know Vista sucks. We know Microsoft felt the same way. We get it!! Please stop beating us over the head with it already.

Re:Enough already! (1, Insightful)

iamapizza (1312801) | more than 5 years ago | (#25819413)

I agree with you; if we were to somehow get a hold of internal memos in the Apple corporation, we'd probably be seeing equally 'truthful' or 'embarrassing' statements (but not on slashdot, since it seems like we are so keen on puckering up to Apple's proverbial posterior these days).

"Just make the machines shinier, those idiots will think it's a more powerful and configurable machine"

"Let's tell them it's Unix-like, they'll think it IS Unix!"

"Those ads were a great idea, even I can't find flaws with them!"

But if we did, I'm guessing that we'd suddenly have a host of Applogizers (get it? Apple+apologizers? Ha ha, my wit just cut my jugular) lining up to explain why those statements aren't really true or valid.

Please, corporations work like this, just stop already. Find something better to publish, like a Monty Python video.

A premium experience as defined by Walt = Apple. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25819277)

"A premium experience as defined by Walt = Apple."

That sounds about right. I'm surprised that Walt spits Steve Jobs' dick out of his mouth long enough to write a column.

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