Originally Posted by vinea
Hardly. Adobe has shown itself capable of being as ham fisted as MS. So has Apple for that matter.
Adobe is better than is MS in this. Adobe doesn't attempt to coerce others as MS has been shown to do, in both unethical, and illegal ways.
I'd rather Silverlight succeed than fail to keep Flash honest.
I don't want to see Silverlight fail either. I have it on my machines. I just don't want to see it push Flash out.
MS has never really dominated the web. Even so, it has done far better than other corporate entities. Do you really think Netscape or even Google to be more altruistic than MS?
If its server software continues to push Linux out, it will be controlling that major area. There are other MS technologies that are in a sense "controlling" because so many web sites have given up interoperability for convenience. Thankfully, due to both Firefox and Apple's upswing in popularity, things are slowly moving in the other direction.
I do think that Netscape was far more altruistic than is MS. Netscape gave away most all of its own innovations. MS has not, except where they think it will tighten control for their other purposes.
After Netscape was destroyed, MS hunkered down with IE, and we saw nothing of value since, until Firefox came along. And really, though there are hopeful signs that IE's reign may slowly end, the jury is still out on that one. This isn't just my opinion, as you know, but also that of most of the PC world as well.
As far as Google is concerned, they have done some good, but the main point here is that it's better that the power be split up rather than to lay in one hand.
What are the quantifiable benefits of Google dominance over MS dominance? In what way would MS search be different today than Google search to the general public? That Google is more efficient at managing and paying adwords is a given...but in what way does this benefit the consumer of web searches?
You would rather the company that controls the World of the OS, and is coming to rule the servers used on the internet, also rule search, and anything else we rely on?
You want it all in the hands of MS?
You want that one company to have even more power to push through what may be good for it, but not anyone else?
I'd rather see different points of power duking it out. That's best for all of us.
I don't see MS doing anything significant if they have no stiff competition. The same is true of others, but it's MS that holds most of the cards in the computer industry right now. I see no reason to give them all the rest.
The difference that I see is that somehow, MS would try to subvert it as they've tried with everything else to keep it working better with Windows. Look at what they attempted to do to JAVA. Change it enough so that those working with MS's version would be constrained to Windows.
Then you should be hoping that Silverlight can take significant share from Flash.
I hope it takes enough share to keep Adobe innovating its product.
Personally, I've never minded Microsoft dominance because I came from the Unix world. Better that MS conquered the world than ANY of those guys or we'd be paying $5000 per app on $20,000 machines as the dominant business model.
It certainly wasn't MS that was responsible for cutting those costs. That happened long before MS grabbed hold of the PC OS. It's been shown that they could cut the price of their software by half, and still make billions in profit each year, but they don't. It's not our interests they have at heart. And, thats fine. But without good stiff competition, they have no reason to be generous.
Even Mac was never as consumer friendly as the Wintel platform. The UI was fantastically better but the costs have always been significantly higher. Sufficiently so that had Apple and not MS been dominant I would guess that widespread use of computers by the general public would have been pushed back by a decade.
That's not really true. Every year, going back over two decades, IDC, and other companies that do this work, have shown that ROI on Macs is much better than that of Windows machines. That's even true if only a small number of Macs are present in the environment.
Yes, upfront costs are higher.
Unreasoned hatred of MS is just as silly as unreasoned adoration of Apple.
So, reasoned hatred is ok?
I don't hate MS, I just don't trust their motives. This is something that we know about MS. It's not unreasoned thinking to look back at the first federal lawsuit against them in the early '90's when they first killed their big opposition. Nor is it unreasoning to look back at the last one, or the current ones.
I don't know of any major company in recent memory that has had such a record.
Still, they do produce useful products in several areas. I don't deny that. I use some of them.
Here's a test for you. Name another computer company anywhere in the world of that same period that would have been more trustworthy with monopoly power than Microsoft from the consumer perspective?
That's not a useful question. I don't want to see ANY of these companies with monopoly power. ANY!!!
The problem is that MS does have that power, and they don't handle it well. I don't believe they should be given more.
Not Univac, Sperry, DEC, Sun, or even Digital Research (CP/M) would have charged so little for their operating system on systems so inexpensive as IBM, MS and Intel did during those crucial years IMHO. $40 for an OS? Nor would IBM had been any better a custodian in the long haul.
I'm not saying any of them would have been. Certainly not Apple.
But the point is that MS IS in that position, and has been for some time, and it hasn't been good in many ways.
Certainly, standardizing on one OS and hardware set has been "good" for business, in that it eased their entry into computerization. But many computer experts have also said that it has stalled progress, and that the balance between the two might have been negative.
Personally, other than for my own preferences and investments, I think it would be best if somehow there was about an even split between Windows, OS X, and some form of UNIX that's out there, not necessarily some Linux distro, but possibly that.
Competition would then be at its highest, costs would be at their lowest, and progress would be at its fastest.
I remember how fast things evolved in the short years before the PC first came out, and how quickly they cooled off after Windows arrived. It pretty much killed off everything other than the Mac.