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Re: Microsoft's Africa Scam

__/ [Thomas Wootten] on Sunday 16 October 2005 20:21 \__

> Amazing. Simply amazing. The absurdities Microsoft comes up with.
> --
> "Linux is an upstart system based on the idea that software should be
> freely available and can be copied and modified at no cost unlike
> proprietary software like Microsoft's Windows ..."
> --
> Well that idea came from GNU for a start, MS need to check their history.
> And how it's said like it's a bad thing...I guess MS have the best
> spindoctors outside of 10 Downing Street. Hell, they probably have better!
> --
> "Ballmer said governments should not necessarily opt for open source
> alternatives over proprietary software like Microsoft, even in developing
> countries where expensive software can impede the rollout of computer
> access to poorer communities.
>  "Governments should be open in every sense, open to look at every
> alternative," Ballmer told a group of industry players. "It's about open
> choice not just open source."
> --
> While _I_ actually agree with that, the odds are, as Peter says, Ballmer
> _doesn't_
> --
> "Is open source viable? You tell me what you want and I will tell you why
> we do it better ... it's enough if you want to pick the less good
> solution," said Ballmer. "We are competing with Linux and we are going to
> compete very, very well."
> --
> yes, if MS throw enough of their vast resources at a problem, they stand a
> fair chance of making software that is technologically better than other
> solutions (whether FLOSS or other vendor's proprietary)
> But notice how MS use the term 'open source' not 'free software'

What's more worrying is the realisation of the fact that people die from
hunger in some of these countries. Tax money gets spent on Office licences
(READ: gets shipped to Redmond) rather than put bread in the mouths of the

Then, Mr. ever-so-generous Gates launches charity initiatives to help fight
hunger in Africa. Ironically enough, he probably donates the very same
money that he 'stole' from these people for metaphysical /code/, through

> Open source is just a software development model, and as such should be
> relatively easy for MS to kill by producing high quality software
> The Free Software Movement is far more; and far more deadly to MS. Since
> if the masses can be convinced of the benefits of Free Software (one that
> springs to mind is you can have confidence that the software does ONLY
> what it claims to do; since what developer would be brazen enough to put
> backdoors/spyware etc in software then release the source code)
> Then MS are going to have BIG trouble.
> Slightly aside - anyone think MS might nick code from the *BSDs? And if
> they did, unlike apple the odds are MS would keep zipped about it. Not
> least because it would be a marketing disaster. 'MS admit free software is
> superior - It has been revealed that Windows Vista utilises large
> proportions of code from the popular Open Source Operating system OpenBSD'
> or suchlike.

Windows is known to have been built on some BSD source, at lease some TCP
stack or whatever it may have been. That's only what the community is
/aware/ of. Just imagine how many thefts have been swept under the table
over the years.


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