Thursday, February 23, 2006

Unfair?

A bunch of cry-babies in Europe are suing Microsoft yet again for supposed violations in software that hasn't even been released yet.  This has to be one of the most ridiculous things I've heard in a while.
 
To be sure, I am distinctly aware of the plainly evil way Microsoft has tended to treat its customers.  It is no secret that I worked there for several years and that facing evidence of horrible customer treatment is one of the key reasons I choose not to work there anymore.  But just because they tend to treat their customers poorly is no reason to sue for behaviors they might exhibit.
 
For example, the points cited in the article were:
  • Office incompatiblity - since when is a requirement that your program integrates with everyone elses?  Isn't it a little extreme that Group A is suing because they can't figure out how to gracefully handle a file created by Group B.
  • HTML Replacement - evidently, the fact that MS prefers to innovate and extend on HTML that is just unfair to those who would rather keep the status quo.  XAML has an open specification so there is no reason they couldn't choose to support it.  Or even to ignore it and create their own language or extensions.
  • DRM Bundling - are you kidding me?  So because they are adding a feature to increase security for users, it creates an unfair advantage?  The feature is useless unless all their applications support it.  So how could they not bundle this?  Isn't this exactly the type of support that other DRM solutions would like to create if they could?

As downhill as Microsoft has gone over the years, it is lawsuits like this that just make the world a harsher place.  It is whining children like the clowns at Real, Oracle, and Sun who stifle creation, impede progress, and choke the life out of innovation and progress.  We should sue them for wasting all our time.

I am first to vote with my time, chatter, and pocketbook when I see evil in the marketplace.  Hotmail for example, is sorely lacking in features, is almost unusable because of advertising and its garbage interface.  So now I use GMail for my primary personal email client after being a loyal hotmail fan for many years.  Likewise, I the Firefox browser as my primary web client because of features and performance that are lacking in IE.  If you don't like a product, you can ignore it, speak out against it, or pick a better alternative.  But tieing up our courts just to make a statement is petty, wasteful, immature, and...well...evil.


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