People who know me will know I have been rough on Microsoft from pretty much Windows 3.0. Before then the software they made was well known amongst the computer savvy as being second rate, or barely adequate. But Windows 3 started Microsoft down the route of bringing the PC to the mass market. The mass market didn't know anything about crap software. Microsoft made the operating system so the word processor has to be good. Sounds logical. Reality was very much different tho. Microsoft started a bunch of dirty tactics to make sure that it and anyone who wanted in would have control of the market. Control. It's the big keyword here.
I see a lot of other people trashing Microsoft these days, but they don't have a very big grasp on the history and the slippery slick foulness that oozed off this company. Some people are just plain annoyed and mouthing off with spurious claims of Microsoft's misdeeds and they are doing more damage to the cause than good. I get a feeling for how some of the more conservative greenies must feel about the feral hippies chaining themselves to trees. Or the absolutely moronic punks who throw rocks in a globalisation protest. The idiot kids who want to fight against the "One Nation" party for what the kids "think" the party stands for and not what it actually stands for (which is more ignorance than maliciousness). Unions whose noble ideals are corrupted by petty minded administrative power hungry representatives.
A cause is not responsible for the morons that fight for it.
Unfortunately, in this day where marketing rules all, it seems if you have idiots on the frontline then the mass media will push that image. The public gets turned off the idea.
If you are a moron and prone to getting excited in a mob, please stay home.
Gandhi would win the media campaign every time with his non-violent protest, the other guy would have to become active and voila - he's the bad guy. And if they don't bite, damnit starve yourself until they do.
Back to Microsoft's history; the continual law suits and settlements against Microsoft were simply amazing. They stole code. They stole workers. They bought things that were good and bent them to their own purposes, often making them crap or killing them off completely. Their main product lines were and are lousy with bugs, flaws, unecessary feature bloat and lack of control. The department of justice lawsuit against Microsoft, which went on for years was a farce. Microsoft was convicted. Talks of splitting the company up were just about set in stone. But the penalty was appealed, while Microsoft continued doing what it went to court for. Negotiations and appeals went on for ages. Until the Republican party got in. Microsoft are big buddies with the Republicans. They are major sponsors of the Republican conventions, along with the national gun lobby, telecommunications companies, drug companies, and the tobacco companies. What then. Oh - let Microsoft think up their own punishment; free software for schools. Don't go thinking that the Democrats are any better, justice might have been served in this case had Gore been president but Microsoft money was still good enough for them. As soon as the Republican government came to power everyone knew that Microsoft would get off.
It seems that lately Microsoft, like the USA government, has picked up the pace of doing dirty evil thngs. The push for digital rights management, the lies about other operating systems, the pulling out from the United Nations Standard group, it's enourmous push to place patents on even the most rediculous of things is indicitive of an unhealthy system and power gone mad. The centralising of wealth can only go on for so long, but it seems that the power mongers of society today are rushing to wring every last drop of blood from the planet ... before we turn on ourselves.
So - don't buy Microsoft. Or Sony. Or NEC for that matter (they screwed me over once and I won't forget it). There was more point to this but my fingers and brain are tired.