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Microsoft sets sights on providing an Apple-like experience - Page 3

post #81 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by mbmcavoy View Post

This is a pretty interesting statement. I think Ballmer almost gets it.
1) From a user perspective, I don't think the Mac is at all narrow; it is consistent.
2) The choice that Windows provides, in terms of hardware, is valuable. What other choice, provided by MS, does the user get?

Now, from a developer perspective, his comments make more sense.
3) If you want to develop for a Mac, you use Cocoa and Objective-C. Very complete, but that's just about it.
4) On a PC, you have C++, C# .NET, VB .NET, VBA, etc. See - CHOICES!!!

"In Windows, the choice makes YOU!" It seems to me, the selection of development language depends on your project. I started using VBA with Excel and Access. Then I made the transition to VB .NET, and now I'm working with C# .NET. I'd hardly say I mastered any of them, after several years.

5) Furthermore, there are often several APIs that you can use to accomplish the same task. See - CHOICES!!!

I've had a hell of a time figuring out how to work with databases. There are several different APIs that can be used, and they can't be mixed. ADO and DAO, I think. I've never been able to keep them straight. Which should I use, and why? Searching for help usually gets me an example that looks perfect, but after several hours I discover it's the wrong kind. More like DOA to me...

While this choice is perceived as value, it is so messy and confusing that it's detrimental to the novice and mid-level programmer.

Considering "Developers! Developers! Developers! Developers! Developers!", this is clearly where his mind is at, and this is a good thing to focus future Windows development.

But what about the users?

Did someone say "DEVELOPERS"?????????

Well why didn't you say so earlier?!!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8zEQhhaJsU4

"COME ONNNNNNNNNNN YEAHHHHHHHHH!!
post #82 of 119
Based on the last couple of weeks, Apple could use some stiff competition. The continuing unavailability of the 3G iPhone, the botched up launch of MobileMe, and the corporate-speak that Apple uses to not acknowledge that anything is awry is indicative of arrogance, not innovation.

Maybe Microsoft isn't the company to do it. Maybe Google's Android OS will serve up some real competition to Apple. I have to say I sure don't like the way they've been behaving over the last few weeks.
post #83 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by rnaoncfixd View Post

I feel that Apple has gotten quite cocky lately and has become too ambitious in providing things that are actually "like Microsoft but better". Mobile Me has yet to surprise anyone with quality. Every new update that comes out for Leopard seems to create more problems than fix. The new iPhone's launch was plagued with problems. There are incompatibility issues with some 3rd party plug ins (which is exactly the opposite of Microsoft actually, where I have specifically made products that crash and 3rd party products which work well). It seems that all Apple needs to do is have the blue screen of death instead of that spiny pinwheel of horrific catastrophe.

Apple has become lazy lately because of their booming sales. This is leading to poorer quality . I agree with others stating the claim that Microsoft should be successful to create more competitive business. I hope that the "zune phone" makes it and creates a shift towards progressive technology instead of regressive. When Apple sees it, maybe they'll strive for an even bigger push than they usually have.

Actually, I'm sure mobileme will be a wonderful experience......once they get the kinks out. Lets face it, the mobileme team dropped the ball and totally screwed up the launch. I'm sure once Jobs gets back from his vacation he is going to stomp the crap out of the mobileme team leader and beat the crap out of the rest.
Rest assured he will get things back on track.
post #84 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by miniMoe View Post

"...mimic the experience offered by the Mac..."

Microsoft's been trying to do that since Windows 1.x, for more than 20 years now.

Nothin' new here.

More plausible speculation from Microsoft, more good products from Apple. It's a pity we live in a world where plausible speculation outsells good products though.

McD
Android proves (as Windows & VHS did before it) that if you want to control people, give us choices and the belief we're capable of making them. We're all 'living' the American dream.
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Android proves (as Windows & VHS did before it) that if you want to control people, give us choices and the belief we're capable of making them. We're all 'living' the American dream.
Reply
post #85 of 119
Microsoft has a lot of VERY smart people working for them - maybe too many. I've heard/read that Vista was a design by committee nightmare with multiple levels of managers second-guessing, turf-battling, and other such petty things during the design & implementation.

MS should emulate Apple by appointing smart design (not business or sales) people in charge of products and making a VERY small group responsible for the final product. Apple has Steve with his obsessive attention to detail - MS needs more people like that (or needs to put the ones it has in positions of power).

MS has a ton of great tech., years of experience doing software, and lots of very good people. They need to streamline their development process and leverage their vast experience and intellectual property to produce something GREAT! They just seem never to put people in charge who can recognize greatness, demand it, and keep the mediocre from gumming up the works.

As long as they continue to be a design by committee, make sure everyone is happy, let everyone's finger touch it shop, they'll be doomed to making camels rather than race horses.

- Jasen.
post #86 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by jasenj1 View Post

Microsoft has a lot of VERY smart people working for them - maybe too many.

MS has a ton of great tech., years of experience doing software, and lots of very good people. They need to streamline their development process and leverage their vast experience and intellectual property to produce something GREAT! They just seem never to put people in charge who can recognize greatness, demand it, and keep the mediocre from gumming up the works.

As long as they continue to be a design by committee, make sure everyone is happy, let everyone's finger touch it shop, they'll be doomed to making camels rather than race horses.

- Jasen.

I completely agree. In fact, I have been saying this for quite some time now.

I have worked with many people who have worked for or gone off to work for MS and they have been some of the brightest people I have met/worked with. Those who have left the company have basically told me what Jasen is saying.

Too many chefs in the kitchen....
post #87 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by wheelhot View Post

In the future Microsoft logo will change to a pear with a bite mark on the upper left of the logo.

More like a lemon!
post #88 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cicero View Post

I completely agree. In fact, I have been saying this for quite some time now.

I have worked with many people who have worked for or gone off to work for MS and they have been some of the brightest people I have met/worked with. Those who have left the company have basically told me what Jasen is saying.

Too many chefs in the kitchen....

I've always wondered what exactly is the problem with MS on this point. They have a whole bunch of money to hire some of the best minds on the planet. Yet MS can't innovate themselves out of a paper bag.
It makes me think the problem is the idiotic but dominating polices set in place that the employees have to work by. Is this correct?
Too many chefs in the kitchen makes me think its simply a management problem. But surely the problems are much deeper than this right?
post #89 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by city View Post

Microsoft should stop focusing on capturing and dominating markets and actually invent something that will advance womankind. It all about "selling" to them. As such they are following the path of General Motors and their high profit impractical SUVs. People eventually wise-up with California leading the way. ("focusing on capturing and dominating markets"-is Bush in-charge?)

Amazing thought process.

Microsoft should stop focusing on capturing and dominating markets? That is the point of a corporation - to make the shareholders/investors money by capturing and dominating markets. It's wonderful if a corporation has other goals...but the corporation can't fund those goals without making money, and to make money they must attempt to dominate whatever market they are in. Basic economics.

Your political comment doesn't follow either - while you may disagree with the reason for the war in Iraq, the United States is not "capturing" or "dominating" Iraq in any way. Troops are actually being withdrawn *right now* as peace and stability in the country continues to increase. The widely stated purpose is to ensure that the Iraqi people have a stable, democratic (or whatever they want) government and functioning social system when the withdrawal is complete. How is that "capturing" or "dominating"?

Finally, General Motors makes "high profit impractical SUVs"? The MILLIONS of Americans who have purchased them specifically for their utility since the introduction of the Ford Explorer ("first" SUV) in ~1990 prove that they were in fact very useful, practical vehicles.
post #90 of 119
You know what I suspect is the root of MS's problems? I'm willing to bet that most of MS's upper management and executives don't actually use Windows.

Wha--? What do I mean by that? Am I suggesting they use Linux or OS X?

No, when I say that, I mean that they run Windows at work and on their home machines, but they don't actually use it. It's all business. They don't use Windows for enjoyment, and they don't view it as part of their life. It's just a product or just a business tool to them. And when you view software like that, I suspect you don't see it in the same way the consumer does and you're never on their wavelength. Whenever I use Windows, that's what I feel like. I feel like I'm using something that was partly tossed together without any regard for how a real human has to use it. It feels like someone designed it on paper, presented it for committee discussion, refined it and discussed it many times over and all the while it's an abstraction. And as it wound its way through this approval process, it was never really used.

Remember all those spy photos of Steve Jobs and various other Apple-connected folks using the iPhone prior to its release? I found that fascinating and wonder how many other companies test their unreleased products like that. They were really putting it to the test and making it part of their life and working out the wrinkles via real-world usage. I suspect the same is done with OS X and the iPod. The amazing thing to me about Apple's products is how perfectly they seem to fit right into the way a human being needs to do things. You can sense that a real person sat there and really used it, and lived with it and that the software was molded around that.
post #91 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by thompr View Post

Balmer said:

<...more comprehensive effort to redefine the meaning and value of Windows for our customers.>

This quote says so much. First of all, it says that Microsoft feels that it is necessary to define the meaning and value of windows to the customer. Shouldn't the customer just naturally sense the value, if the product is any good? I know with most good products, the value is inherently obvious from the get-go. If the company has to TELL me why it is valuable even after I have tried it, then the product most likely stinks.

The second thing the quote says is that Microsoft has to REdefine the value. In other words, not only do they feel it necessary to define in the first place, but they failed at it once and need to try it again... presumably with a different - but somehow better - definition.

Balmer STILL doesn't get it!

Thompson

Well said my friend. Well said.
Always remember..wherever you go, there you are.
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Always remember..wherever you go, there you are.
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post #92 of 119
Microsoft just don't get it.
After more than 15 years using every permutation of Windows, I made the switch to Mac last week, and doubt I will look back.
I consider myself a power user, I work in the media and have used Mac (OS9) in the past. This time last year I remember having a cliche row with a Mac user - 'they're specialised, over-priced, exclusive, no-software...'
You know, it's nonsense.
There is no reason at all to keep using a product you're unhappy with.
And that was the root of my switch, Vista is rubbish.
Once you've bought the right version (wtf?), you are FORCED to put up with a disgraceful, ill thought out, unintuitive user experience. It's bloated, slow, painfully buggy, I could go on...
What would make me, someone who used to build his own PCs annually, has a cupboard full of PC components, and a current desktop PC fit enough to fly the shuttle, walk into to a Apple store and a hand over cash for a macbook?
If they are going to save their business Microsoft has to understand real people. As a 30-something, married, new father - I don't have time to fiddle around. I want to dip in, get a job done, and dip out.
I'm by no means an Apple fanatic, I barely understand the product or the company, but I've voted with my wallet. Anyone else had the same experience?
Rav
(morning ramblings, in between whining child strops)
post #93 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by astrosmash View Post

I welcome any improvements to "The PC Experience" and any other area of computer technology, but I'd much rather see these improvements happen through innovation rather than through the "mimicking" of your competitor.

In that case, they have already failed - Microsoft cannot innovate, they copy and crush.


Ballmer's problem is that the Windows "experience" is the problem. When I use my Mac I get things done, when I use Windows I just get frustrated by the whole experience. The only thing Microsoft do well is Flight Simulator - they should stick to that.

I can't understand what he is saying - to take his plan to the extreme, is he talking about selling Microsoft PCs and only running Windows on them? That's the only way he can control Windows end-to-end, surely? But then Microsoft thrives on making statements about what they WILL be doing, and then not doing it. Microsoft Surface, anyone? Shouldn't that be out by now?
My Android phone is the worst phone I've ever owned.
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My Android phone is the worst phone I've ever owned.
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post #94 of 119
One of Microsoft's mistakes has been to be a little too greedy.

They make four mistakes.
1) Windows will install and run on anything,
Microsoft has to cope with a billion hardware variants which makes their software more difficult to maintain than it needs to be.

2) Any vendor can create drivers and release them
Rogue vendors ship drivers which break the OS, and steal resources.

3) They allow/encourage vendors to pre-install crapware.
New computers arrive so full of crapware that it spoils the new-car-smell TM

4) Windows tolerates software which breaks the rules.

Windows itself isn't great, but these four factors undermine the Windows OS experience dramatically. By trying to please everyone, everyone loses out.


All Balmer has to do is grow a pair, and crack down a little.


C.
post #95 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by inkswamp View Post

You know what I suspect is the root of MS's problems? I'm willing to bet that most of MS's upper management and executives don't actually use Windows ... when I say that, I mean that they run Windows at work and on their home machines, but they don't actually use it.

You can also bet that they don't personally have to wrestle it into older systems, or into working with older peripherals, and that accordingly updating what they do work on costs them less of their own money and time than the ordinary user.

I doubt they have much appreciation of the real hassle that it costs people.
post #96 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cicero View Post

That's funny... Apple was just trying to provide a Microsoft like experience with the launch of Mobile Me....

Couldn't have put it better myself!!
post #97 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by nagromme View Post

Ah, yes. Because providing a user-friendly, integrated solution across multiple hardware and software product lines is as easy as just saying so

All along, it wasn't that Apple was good at this stuff, it's just nobody else ever tried before

Microsoft has a world class usability team...they just haven't given it much authority over the final customer experience.

Microsoft has a world class research arm...they just have had a hard time translating that into products.

If Ballamer really intends to do this, they have all the pieces required to transform the Windows user experience. The KEY will be to appoint someone with sufficient power and vision to accomplish this goal.
post #98 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by Carniphage View Post

One of Microsoft's mistakes has been to be a little too greedy.

They make four mistakes.
1) Windows will install and run on anything,

Agree. Reading Ballmer's statements it could mean they're going to have stricter hardware requirements. Windows does run on a FAR wider range of hardware configs than OS X, and I have to give MS respect for that. But it does cause them problems, too.

Quote:
2) Any vendor can create drivers and release them
Rogue vendors ship drivers which break the OS, and steal resources.

Agree. I'm not sure how you crack down on people who write so close to the metal, but I suspect it can and should be done.

Quote:
4) Windows tolerates software which breaks the rules.

Probably not what you meant, but Internet Explorer is a great example of this. It will display the worst garbage HTML. I expect someone had to spend a lot of time writing a smart parser etc. that can deal with all the broken stuff that IE will gladly display. I suspect this was done, in part, to make it easier on web authors, but it just leads to people writing horrible, horrible, HTML

Quote:
All Balmer has to do is grow a pair, and crack down a little.

The problem with that is then you alienate some people and have the potential to lose marketshare. MS thinks more features = appeals to more people. Put enough in there and everyone will like some part of it. They don't understand that too many features = a confusing mess to the "average" customer.

- Jasen.
post #99 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by BocaBoy View Post

Based on the last couple of weeks, Apple could use some stiff competition. The continuing unavailability of the 3G iPhone, the botched up launch of MobileMe, and the corporate-speak that Apple uses to not acknowledge that anything is awry is indicative of arrogance, not innovation.

Yeah, and the continuous Time Machine errors that are impossible to figure out. When the seamless, simple to use solutions no longer work there is absolutely no way of figuring out what went wrong. Last night Time Machine threw errors on both my Macs which are in different locations and don't share any files or networking hardware. I suspect I'll have to start from scratch with both of them. Not too much of a biggie but very annoying and it kind of defeats the purpose of Time Machine.

Apple needs to take a break and settle down to sort out all their bugs. You know, bring out a new Service Pack, kinda. At the moment I am not sure MS would be well advised to copy the Mac user experience. In fact its all a little MS-esque here in Mac land right now.
post #100 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by paxman View Post

Apple needs to take a break and settle down to sort out all their bugs. You know, bring out a new Service Pack, kinda. At the moment I am not sure MS would be well advised to copy the Mac user experience. In fact its all a little MS-esque here in Mac land right now.

This is exactly what I was trying to say. People should stop demeaning the "other side" when we aren't so far from it.
post #101 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by minderbinder View Post

30-to-1? What fantasy world does he live in where Apple has 3 percent market share and Windows 97%?

Exactly.
post #102 of 119
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Originally Posted by stevetim View Post

Perhaps someone should tell Mr. Balmer that Microsoft doesn't sell PC's.

I love that.
post #103 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by simont View Post

Steve Ballmer looked completely idiot on the stage. For a CEO, he should have been calm and make a witty joke at his competitor. Oh! Isn't it what Steve Jobs do? Sorry! There is stupid and stupid... looking at him, a monkey would have done it better.

If Microsoft wants people to have a better opinion of its products, then they should fire Ballmer first, then concentrate on products that appeal to people and that go away from that "Social experience" mind. The Zune is a failure, Vista is a failure on all the line, and everything else they are doing just s***.... maybe except the 360, and even in that field, the hardware isn't working that well and the interface is clunky...

In fact, why bother rebuilding this company? Shut it down, give the money back to the investors and save the face...

Psst... I still want to eventually work for that company. Sorry, but Apple is in Cupertino and all of my family is in Western Washington; a number within a few miles of Microsoft; some but a mile away.

The 360 is having its interface revamped. The hardware is definitely awful though, that fan sounds horrid and the failure rate is much higher than the PS3 or Wii consoles. Microsoft needs to consider a redesign, similiar to what Sony did to the Playstation 2.

Vista is the biggest fuck up of all time. Windows Media Player 11 doesn't support h.264 and nor does Windows Home Server; for that matter only the Zune, Zune software and Xbox360 support h.264. Apple supports h.264 globally. The Zune, honestly - what were they thinking?

But - I've used the Surface, and despite the "big ass table" video - which is funny as hell, it's a pretty neat thing. Kind of like a big ass iPhone that you just so happen to set drinks on.

Microsoft Research does some good. Office is still the best there is - bar none, even though most recent Mac version (2008) could use a little optimization. And believe it or not, Windows can be fixed.

Apple didn't always have OS X. Mac OS 9.22 and earlier sure as hell had problems; hell even Mac OS X early on, 10.0 and 10.1 defined incomplete. Should Apple have shut itself down when the CEO of Dell suggested it in the late 90's?

Microsoft can weather this storm - shutting it down is not in the best interest of the computer industry, Microsoft employees, Microsoft shareholders or even us Apple fans. That said, I do agree - Microsoft could do a little better with less monkeys.
post #104 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by PhillyMJS View Post

...is the one they should copy the most: Admit their OS isn't cutting it anymore, build a new one from scratch, and add legacy support for the old OS into the new one for a few years until application developers make the transition from old-and-busted Windows to new-hotness Windows.

Windows is a bloated piece of crap, spaghetti code, ready to collapse under its own weight. They need to throw it out and start over, they just refuse to admit it to themselves. That's why Vista took so long to come out. Actually they did sort of do it, in typical half-assed Microsoft fashion, a few years back-- when they decided to throw out what they had done and rebuild Vista on the newer Server 2003 codebase. That was a start, but there's still too much legacy crap weighing the system down, and the proof is in the fact that you need a pretty beefy machine with a ton of RAM to even hope to get performance comparable to XP on older hardware.

The funny thing is, I think Microsoft is in a better position to do this sort of thing than Apple was back when they did it. Microsoft owns Virtual PC, and that coupled with today's virtualization technologies ought to make running the "classic" Windows and apps in a sandbox on top of a revamped OS a pretty painless exercise.

~Philly

You get it. You're 100% correct. Microsoft needs their own Windows X project.
post #105 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by parksgm View Post

Amazing thought process.

Microsoft should stop focusing on capturing and dominating markets? That is the point of a corporation - to make the shareholders/investors money by capturing and dominating markets. It's wonderful if a corporation has other goals...but the corporation can't fund those goals without making money, and to make money they must attempt to dominate whatever market they are in. Basic economics.

Your political comment doesn't follow either - while you may disagree with the reason for the war in Iraq, the United States is not "capturing" or "dominating" Iraq in any way. Troops are actually being withdrawn *right now* as peace and stability in the country continues to increase. The widely stated purpose is to ensure that the Iraqi people have a stable, democratic (or whatever they want) government and functioning social system when the withdrawal is complete. How is that "capturing" or "dominating"?

Finally, General Motors makes "high profit impractical SUVs"? The MILLIONS of Americans who have purchased them specifically for their utility since the introduction of the Ford Explorer ("first" SUV) in ~1990 prove that they were in fact very useful, practical vehicles.

Basic economics for some companies might be to make something that's cheap to make like a Big Mac and relentlessly advertise it until consumers get sick or figure out that driving a tank to work solo doesn't make sense. I am looking on the consumer side of things that favors innovation that can be stymied by market hogs. With regard to Iraq, Sadaam was contained prior to the war. The U.S. hasn't successfully spread Christianity (or democracy if you want to call it that). Is the U.S. promoting democracy in Israel? It wouldn't exist. China? What about our stuff made from slaves? Darfur, where there's no oil? Where's our oil from Iraq and Kuwait. You would think that the U.S. owns Kuwait-they hate the U.S.
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post #106 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by bpatton View Post

From the Memo: "Looking ahead, I see an incredibly bright future for our company. As I said at the June 27th Town Hall for Bill, we are the best in the world at doing software and nobody should be confused about this. It doesnt mean that we cant improve, but nobody is better than we are. Nobody works harder than we do. Nobody is more tenacious than we are. Were investing more broadly and more seriously than anybody else. Our opportunities to change the world have never been greater."

Huh? Did he wake up thinking he was working for Apple?

"Grass today is sharper than when I was a boy."
- Abe Simpson
post #107 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by jasenj1 View Post

The problem with that is then you alienate some people and have the potential to lose marketshare. MS thinks more features = appeals to more people. Put enough in there and everyone will like some part of it. They don't understand that too many features = a confusing mess to the "average" customer.

- Jasen.

I think the most generous way to describe it is
"Windows tries to please everybody"

But you are right, to get back to a cleaner Windows experience, they are going to have to annoy some vendors, developers and customers.

The only thing I can think of is a WindowsPlus badge. The hardware has to be MS Approved.
The Drivers will have to be signed. And if you plug in a card (or certain software) that breaks rules - the WindowsPlus icon gets a red X through it.

C.
post #108 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by samurai1999 View Post

Amazing - that's Ballmer's Big New Idea that's going to turn Microsoft round & save his job
- Copy Apple!
- the man's a genius!


Ballmer doesn't get it. He thinks he can lead by following! Someone hand him a pink slip.

Proud AAPL stock owner.

 

GOA

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Proud AAPL stock owner.

 

GOA

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post #109 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by jasenj1 View Post

Microsoft has a lot of VERY smart people working for them - maybe too many. I've heard/read that Vista was a design by committee nightmare with multiple levels of managers second-guessing, turf-battling, and other such petty things during the design & implementation.

...

As long as they continue to be a design by committee, make sure everyone is happy, let everyone's finger touch it shop, they'll be doomed to making camels rather than race horses.

- Jasen.

You nailed it. A building full of engineers are no substitute for one great visionary.

Proud AAPL stock owner.

 

GOA

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Proud AAPL stock owner.

 

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post #110 of 119
The satires actually show more respect for Microsoft than the conference video of Stevie B does. If Jobs had ever run around the stage at a convention like an immature drunken tourist at a strip club, he would have been criticized as not being in touch with the conservative conventions of corporate America.

On one hand, you have to acknowledge that Microsoft has been and continues to be one of the most successful companies in existence. By most financial and market penetration measures, whether fairly achieved or not, they completely outflank Apple.

But on the other, if you ignore market success and evaluate their offerings solely on the quality of the software from a UI, technical and productivity standpoint, just about everything Microsoft offers is crap.

I suppose one can argue that the original DOS and perhaps Windows 98 were good products. But just about every product since is embarrassingly bad, in my opinion. It continues to shock me how annoying it is to use Vista and how bad the UI is in Word in spite of the fact that Word is on almost every PC in the world. And IE7 seems pretty lame even compared with the AOL Browser (which uses IE as its core, but has far superior functionality).

Microsoft has never gotten it right. They've been successful by manipulating the market into providing a near-monopoly for them and the result is that their applications and OS don't have to perform. Users do not enjoy using Microsoft products, rather they put up with Microsoft products because they're there and it runs on cheap hardware. When corporate America buys hardware, UI Experience is not one of the items they're checking off.

It's sort of like living in an area that only has fast food restaurants. They're easy to get to and they seem cheap and after a while you define those places as what a restaurant comprises in your own mind and you don't think you need anything better.

Apple certainly has its flaws and arrogance has hurt some of their offerings. But they get the user-experience right a lot more often than they get it wrong and for the last few years they've mainly been hitting home runs and it's finally paying off for them.
post #111 of 119
Why do they HAVE to create an iPhone competitor, and based off the Zune no less, which is a complete flop?

I admit it will be amusing though, to see a Zune, with WinMobile on it. How much more sadistic can you get anyway?

Personally I'm waiting for the perfect coffee table killer... oh wait.
post #112 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by zoetmb View Post

The satires actually show more respect for Microsoft than the conference video of Stevie B does. If Jobs had ever run around the stage at a convention like an immature drunken tourist at a strip club, he would have been criticized as not being in touch with the conservative conventions of corporate America.

On one hand, you have to acknowledge that Microsoft has been and continues to be one of the most successful companies in existence. By most financial and market penetration measures, whether fairly achieved or not, they completely outflank Apple.

But on the other, if you ignore market success and evaluate their offerings solely on the quality of the software from a UI, technical and productivity standpoint, just about everything Microsoft offers is crap.

I suppose one can argue that the original DOS and perhaps Windows 98 were good products. But just about every product since is embarrassingly bad, in my opinion. It continues to shock me how annoying it is to use Vista and how bad the UI is in Word in spite of the fact that Word is on almost every PC in the world. And IE7 seems pretty lame even compared with the AOL Browser (which uses IE as its core, but has far superior functionality).

Microsoft has never gotten it right. They've been successful by manipulating the market into providing a near-monopoly for them and the result is that their applications and OS don't have to perform. Users do not enjoy using Microsoft products, rather they put up with Microsoft products because they're there and it runs on cheap hardware. When corporate America buys hardware, UI Experience is not one of the items they're checking off.

It's sort of like living in an area that only has fast food restaurants. They're easy to get to and they seem cheap and after a while you define those places as what a restaurant comprises in your own mind and you don't think you need anything better.

Apple certainly has its flaws and arrogance has hurt some of their offerings. But they get the user-experience right a lot more often than they get it wrong and for the last few years they've mainly been hitting home runs and it's finally paying off for them.

Pretty much, it's only taken Apple and Microsoft about 30 years to truly figure things out.

Really, it doesn't matter how awesome a product is, if it doesn't fit the needs of its intended audience. Apple and Microsoft have had their share of screw-ups, but I view them as targeting 2 different sectors most of the time. Apple sucks for business use, and most of their products aren't business-oriented. Whereas Microsoft understands businesses a lot better, but are beginning to confuse the consumer, with overly wizard driven setups and burying other functions.

Apple currently has nothing to counter Windows Server/VS/Direct X/Exchange/Office, but Microsoft can't compete with iLife/iWorks, etc, general ease of use, and UI, and the closed system model (although I don't like closed systems that much), ie stuff that matters to most consumers. Each have the pieces to improve on their weaknesses, but it will take time.
post #113 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by guinness View Post

Pretty much, it's only taken Apple and Microsoft about 30 years to truly figure things out.

Really, it doesn't matter how awesome a product is, if it doesn't fit the needs of its intended audience. Apple and Microsoft have had their share of screw-ups, but I view them as targeting 2 different sectors most of the time. Apple sucks for business use, and most of their products aren't business-oriented. Whereas Microsoft understands businesses a lot better, but are beginning to confuse the consumer, with overly wizard driven setups and burying other functions.

Apple currently has nothing to counter Windows Server/VS/Direct X/Exchange/Office, but Microsoft can't compete with iLife/iWorks, etc, general ease of use, and UI, and the closed system model (although I don't like closed systems that much), ie stuff that matters to most consumers. Each have the pieces to improve on their weaknesses, but it will take time.

I understand the point you're attempting to make, but you're wrong. "Apple sucks for business use"? Get real.

Proud AAPL stock owner.

 

GOA

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Proud AAPL stock owner.

 

GOA

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post #114 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by mbmcavoy View Post

Now, from a developer perspective, his comments make more sense.
3) If you want to develop for a Mac, you use Cocoa and Objective-C. Very complete, but that's just about it.
4) On a PC, you have C++, C# .NET, VB .NET, VBA, etc. See - CHOICES!!!

You're just listing off Microsoft APIs.

Who says C++ is PC-only?

Mac OS X can run apps built in C, C++, Objective-C, or all 3 together ("Objective-C++").

Then there's the usual assortment - Perl, Python, Ruby, Ruby on Rails, Cocoa-Ruby, Cocoa-Python, Fortran, AppleScript, AppleScript Studio, Java and all of its cohorts. All except Fortran come with the OS for free.

And of course you can call into the Carbon libraries from C if you need to.
--Johnny
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--Johnny
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post #115 of 119
Microsoft need to reformat their company and download some free cheap nasty software to stop them fouling up all the time. Then they can de-frag monkey boy. Oh and while they are at it - they can find that missing .DAT file.

Bunch of Loosers. "I know, let's copy Apple" - must have been a real forward thinking brinner (brunch and dinner) meeting to come up with that sh*t.

Microsoft are like their operating system - over-complicated, boring, and a f*cking wast of time and effort.
post #116 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by lundy View Post

Java

Java is only so-so supported. To develop in java for OSX you're limited to 1.5.

Back to MS though...there is a strategy in which it could compete with the Mac home experience...revamp the 360:

1) Fix the hardware...upgrade the 360 Elite to PS3 build quality (no more RROD...rock solid feel to construction) for $499:
  • Jasper MB
  • 120GB HDD
  • 802.11N, gigE, FW400, USB
  • wireless keyboard and mouse
  • DVD burner ($599 for Blu-Ray)
3) Further refine the dashboard to make the user experience even better.
4) Release MS Office 2007 Home as a 360 title.
5) Release an iLife equivalent as a 360 title. (maybe with MS-Money)
6) A web browser that doesn't suck on the 360.

The new dashboard looks decent but continued refinement for usability and user experience is desireable. Also improving the user experience between MS Windows Home Server and the 360 would be good. Requiring Home Servers to have 802.11N for connectivity to 360s would be good as well.

They probably would want to license the 360 Elite to HP, Dell and maybe a couple others to rebrand and sell since home PCs desktop sales will tank.

I assume that at $499 this thing is instantly profitable even for a BR upgrade at $599.
post #117 of 119
If Microsoft is going to offer a uniformly great 'end to end experience' across all hardware manufacturers, be it cell phone or PCs, then what this implies is that these manufacturers will have to design and sell products that are even less differentiated from each other. In essence Dell PCs will become even more interchangeable not only with HPs but with the mom-and-pop PC builder down in the corner strip mall.

Guess how happy the manufacturers will be when the message from Microsoft is that they have even less room to differentiate their product from the rest of the pack?

It will be a notable first in business history if a company actually agrees that "Yes, making our product even more generic and more of a commodity is really good for us!"
post #118 of 119
"narrow but complete"

How could anything be both ?
Could Windows be user friendly but cheap ?

C'mon...
post #119 of 119
Quote:
Originally Posted by powderdust View Post

Microsoft need to reformat their company and download some free cheap nasty software to stop them fouling up all the time. Then they can de-frag monkey boy. Oh and while they are at it - they can find that missing .DAT file.

Bunch of Loosers. "I know, let's copy Apple" - must have been a real forward thinking brinner (brunch and dinner) meeting to come up with that sh*t.

Microsoft are like their operating system - over-complicated, boring, and a f*cking wast of time and effort.

& money, don't forget waste of money. PC manufacturers may be able to bash out notebooks (which can't run Vista) for half the price of a MacBook but that's just a waste of the deposit on your MacBook.

McD
Android proves (as Windows & VHS did before it) that if you want to control people, give us choices and the belief we're capable of making them. We're all 'living' the American dream.
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Android proves (as Windows & VHS did before it) that if you want to control people, give us choices and the belief we're capable of making them. We're all 'living' the American dream.
Reply
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