Nuke Redmond!

From: Richard Erlacher <>
Date: Fri Jan 12 12:06:10 2001

No, it wasn't really directed at any specific person, but, rather, toward
those, in general, who repeat the questionable and second-hand remarks of
others in an effort to lend credibility to them by attributing them to
someone else (presumably smarter or more knowledgable, which they seldom
----- Original Message -----
From: "Dave McGuire" <>
To: <>
Sent: Friday, January 12, 2001 10:17 AM
Subject: Re: Nuke Redmond!

> On January 11, Richard Erlacher wrote:
> > Sir, you damage your credibility with statements like some you've made
> > While it's true that the Microsoft products may not be the "best" thing
> > thos of us who are inclined to fuss and fiddle with our computers,
> > WAY better for those who can't, won't, or shouldn't.
> I know this response wasn't directed at me, but I have to take [at
> least a little] exception to this.
> Microsoft products are teaching (have teached?) the world that
> computers (ALL computers) need to be restarted several times each day,
> and that this is normal and acceptable behavior. That computers break
> frequently, and cause the loss of work. That computers (MODERN
> computers) have a bitmapped click-happy interface, and anything that
> doesn't is "quaint, useless old technology".
Judging from the language I've heard in association with such breakdowns, I
have to say I don't believe anyone believes them to be normal, acceptable,
tolerable, or anything that they aren't. They're system breakdowns! These
same users, however, are getting a "feel" for working with systems that are,
in the whole, much more complex than all the automobiles that have ever seen
daylight, combined.

Moreover, I have had a couple of Windows machines (still have one, the other
went with my elder son) that seldom if ever have to be restarted. Of
course, they're portables, so the hardware environment is much better
controlled than in a desktop, and the inherent limitations mitigate the risk
of unfavorable hardware/software interactions.
> Do you really think these are good things for computer neophytes to
> be taught? There are hoards of Microsoft weenies running around who
> actually *believe* these things...and with Microsoft teaching them to
> shun other technologies, they'll probably *never* understand the true
> nature of "computers".
I don't think you're giving your fellow man credit he deserves.
> Here's an exaple of the brain-damage that Microsoft is promoting. A
> while back, I had a job in which I was designing some custom
> microcoded floating-point processors using MSI and LSI chips and
> PAL/TTL glue. My grandmother (may she rest in peace) was talking to
> her [windows-running] neighbor, bragging about me in typical
> grandmother style...when asked what I do for a living, she answered
> proudly and accurately, "my grandson is very smart...he builds
> computers!" The neighbor, obviously lacking the social skills to
> understand that he was being insulting, said "aww, that's
> nothing...building them is the easy part. It's LOADING them that's
> hard! Maybe he'll get to that level in a few years. Keeping all
> those programs from messing up Windows is the really hard part of
> 'computers'."
Clearly an unenlightened viewpoint! Since my elder son, 10 years ago, when
he was 10, successfully installed Win3.0 without my advice, knowledge, or
consent, on one of my machines. It worked as well as that generation of OS
ever did.
> I was utterly flabbergasted by this, so much that I was rendered
> speechless.
Both Windows and the popular varieties of LINUX are pretty easy to install
these days. However, Windows suffers greatly from the fact that it has
tried to maintain the usefulness of those applications that were written for
and bought concurrently with much earlier versions of the OS. My brief
encounter with UNIX systems (SUN) taught me that in order to have a
functional system, the system has to be rebuilt every time there's a new
module installed, AND all the software needs to be revised. That means
about 6 weeks of downtime every time anything is revised, be it a serial
port driver or an application patch. To have the system "up" most of the
time, it required a man on duty 24/7. That meant a burn rate of $100K per
year just to keep the OS working. I was REALLY grateful that I could unload
that piece of junk onto my client. Do you think the average "user" wants
that sort of overhead for his computer that he uses to download the latest
> -Dave McGuire
Received on Fri Jan 12 2001 - 12:06:10 GMT

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