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      “What’s the problem?”

      Well, one of the big mobile phone vendors has a store that is very harmful to free software. The other operates a huge surveillance racket. Platform companies who claim to be in favour of open source are turning to licenses that don’t appear to satisfy the OSI definition, denying users the freedom to compete with those vendors.

      In addition, there’s a general feeling that those companies who have got rich off the back of open source software, including some trillion-dollar names, aren’t contributing fairly.

      “What can we do about it?”

      Two decades ago we had a problem with this company called Microsoft, and we’ve found that it’s hilarious to spell their name with a currency symbol. Try that.



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        I’m partial to “MICROS~1”.

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      Microsoft Research has been behind (both in funding and in work) various contributions at least in cryptography published in the top conferences https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/research/group/cryptography-research/#!publications

      So I hesitate to bag them entirely as the last few lines do.

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        We can keep the two separate given they’re run differently with different people. Microsoft Research has some awesome people and tools. Microsoft’s product side mostly ignores them.

        The only time Evil Microsoft matters in terms of MS Research is fact the latter makes patents for former. Every advance MS Research makes is a potential lawsuit for anyone that builds something big with it. Harder to root for them knowing that.

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      “When the IBM representatives showed up at his doorstep, Gates recognized this lucky break for what it was, and promised them an OS. Because he didn’t have one and couldn’t make one (at least not good and fast enough) he bought the rights to a CP/M clone from Seattle Computing Products, and filed off the serial numbers. “

      This is why I tell people to watch Pirates of Silicon Valley. It’s budget as hell. Wozniak said it was only one that was accurate about personalities and key events even if some details were off. The quoted event was in the movie with part of of it here. The scene depicting Steve Jobs as a cult leader stuck with me most.

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      C# / F# et. al / NetCore were the only good things to come out of MS (in my mind)

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        It depends where we draw the line a guess. MSR is where F# originated, as well as things like Z3, Orleans,and others. On the commercial side, we have the invention of XHR, performance centered 3d graphics (DirectX may be proprietary but it was a big change from old school OpenGL which was a mess of vendor extensions),

        The real kicker is that Microsoft was early on a lot of fronts and overconfident because of it: smart phones, tablets, pen computing, integrated web browsing experiences (which have all but become the user shell at this point which ironically they were sued for even though some operating systems like chrome os are exactly this), and others I’m sure.

        Maybe some folks don’t care about one thing or another but they moved a lot of things forward in critical ways to get us where we are today. Almost all of these fronts have been improved upon by others so folks might claim that it didn’t really matter what Microsoft did, but I think many crucial turning points in history come from things Microsoft decided to change. It’s the same way we look back at Apple and deciding the smart phone wasn’t done… most folks today have Android handsets but it’d be silly to pretend that the iPhone didn’t create the momentum in rethinking things just like products before the iPhone did.

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      Therefore Allen went over to the University of Washington and began using a Xerox computer by pretending to be a graduate student. Gates soon followed, and this went on until they were caught and removed from the campus. They continued to break into university and privately owned computer systems until about 1975.

      How dare they!!!

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        Calling out their hypocrisy and foundation based on appropriating public value for private profit is always on point. The whole world is still suffering from their actions in the nineties, and every responible person involved there is still around, and still rich.