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Re: Novell's Push for Linux Partnerships and Sales

  • Subject: Re: Novell's Push for Linux Partnerships and Sales
  • From: "Rex Ballard" <rex.ballard@xxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: 18 Oct 2006 10:10:01 -0700
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DFS wrote:
> Rex Ballard wrote:
> > Larry Qualig wrote:
> >
> >> <SNIP the lunatic ramblings>
> >>
> >> My god Rex... what the hell did your parents do to you when you were
> >> a child? Where on earth do you come up with these ridiculous
> >> conspiracy theories?

Hey, when Kennedy was shot, we were all sent home (I was almost 8).  We
went home and saw the "rush" coverage.  They were expecting the missles
at any moment because it looked so professional.  By 6 PM, most of the
video had been seized.

Today, you normally only get to see the Zapruder film, which has
Kennedy behind a sign when the "3rd shot" was fired.

But I guess it's "possible" that Oswald could have done it all by

> >> Is there any proof of this anywhere? An article, a real website (not
> >> yours) or basically anything at all that substantiates these wild
> >> claims of yours.
> >
> > Actually, I got an e-mail from one of the people in the director's
> > meeting.

> > Unfortunately, it was many years ago, probably around 1996-7.  And
> > this was based on his memory of the events.
> <snip approx 20 paragraphs>
> > It's all so cloak and dagger.  It's so clandestine.
> It's so fictional.
Good be. I could have been marvellously spoofed.
I'd be the last to admit it, but I'll admit it.

> > My guess is that the real truth is probably even stranger than my
> > poorly recollected memory of a memo written by someone who says he was
> > there and didn't want to give me all of the details via e-mail.
> The real truth is your addled brain manufactures delusions that put you in
> the middle of grandiose conspiracies and events held together by extremely
> tenuous links.  It's textbook paranoid schizophrenia.
> http://www.healthsquare.com/mc/fgmc2415.htm

Well, I could buy that.

When I was drinking and drugging I was certainly 8 kinds of crazy.  Of
course, I quit that lifestyle back in 1977, almost 30 years ago.  I
haven't had drugs or alcohol since May 1980.

I don't even like taking aspirin these days.

> Mental illness is nothing to be ashamed of, but when you persist in posting
> the delusions in the face of all contrary evidence, it's time for you to
> consider corrective actions.

Been there, done that.  Got the T-Shirt.

Mom was in therapy from 1957 to 1966.
I was in therapy - helped my Asthma - from 1964 to 1968.
In 1977 I even enrolled myself in an outpatient progrem - between the
drugs, booze, my parents getting divorced, my fiance breaking up, and
not sleeping, and not keeping a job, it was really appropriate for me
to get some help.  6 months later I got a clean bill of health.

I've been going to 12 step meetings since 1977 as well, and have gone
pretty regularly since 1980, usually at least 5-7 meetings a week.  I
did the steps the first time in 1980, and have done them at least once
each year since then.

I did Landmark Education starting in 1991, and have been taking courses
pretty regularly.  I find it much more interesting than therapy.  They
teach notions like responsibility, integrity (still struggle with that
one a bit :-D), blaming others for my problems, persistant complaints
kept in place by the payoff of "being right" (struggle with that one
too).  Then there is being cause in the matter instead of being a
victim.  And not being stopped by the REAL fears, like "looking bad",
or "not belonging", or failing at trying to change a situation.

Of course I have a spiritual background too.  I sing in the choir.  I'm
ordained as a deacon, an elder, and a priest (not catholic), and have
written a few prayers and sermons (nothing you'd remember).

I'm always open to new opportunities for growth and development.

> That, or you're just posting manure because you want attention and don't
> think cola/IT/computer reality is exciting enough.

Gary Hart was a senator in Colorado when I lived there.  The year he
was elected he came to our high school.  Even then he inspired us with
"Any man can make a difference, and Every man should try".  A few years
later he ran for president and didn't do so well because of a little
monkey business, but he did have a point.

I can sit around and do nothing, and bitch and complain to my wife, my
coworkers, and a bunch of other people who can do nothing about the
problem.  Or I can find a group of people who are interested in doing
something about a problem, have the resources to do something about it,
and determine how I can participate with that group.

I have a talent as a writer.  I tell a good story.  I present ideas in
an interesting way.

I worked with UNIX from 1983 to 1987, and I loved it.  I had used PCs,
but they weren't a critical part of my job.  When I switched to MS-DOS
and PCs in 1997, it was like being locked in a cage.  I could do
things, but it took much longer.  I could communicate, but to a much
smaller group of people.  I could solve problems, but it took longer.
It was frustrating, even painful.

In 1990, I took a new job.  I got BOTH a PC and a Sun SparcStation.
The PC ran Windows and the SparcStation ran SunOS.  I had used a Sun
many years earlier, about the time that the Mac-II came out.  Having
this Sun on my desktop was amazing.  I could get so much done, so
quickly, and so easily.  I could communicate with vendors and customers
all over the world.  I even had access to usenet again.

Ever since then, I have refused to give up my ability to access some
form of *nix.  Even if I'm just running cygwin on my Windows laptop, I
have the tools to do what I want to do, and I don't be hamstrung by a
bunch of obstructions and limitations and information that can only be
viewed one way.

> > If you don't want to believe it, don't.  I'm not even sure I believe
> > all of it.
> But that never stops you from slinging the doo-doo first.
Not for a second.  This is one of those where I know I can't really
back it up.
I know it could be pure nonsense, and it probably is.

> > If DFS wants to send e-mails to all of the members of the Novell board
> > sitting from 1994 to 1997, and get "never heard of him, no truth to
> > it" from ALL of them, that would certainly be more than enough to
> > convince me that I was the dupe of a big put-on.
> I doubt it.

I think it would be great if you found the e-mail and pointed out that
it was a spoof.
That would be time for me to completely admit that I was totally wrong.

I think there is enough "coincidence" backing up the story to believe
that it might have been true.  But until someonce comes out in the
court room and says "Microsoft came in to our offices and told us that
unless we terminated our entire UNIX Workstation effort, they would do
something that we believed would have bankrupted us within 6-24 months,
so we signed", I'm not going to try and claim it as a "fact".

We know that Microsoft made similar threats to IBM, related to OS/2,
and Sam Palmisano remembers those threats, and the actions ultimately
taken.  He also announced IBM's support for Linux just a few months
before becoming CEO.  He has also publicly stated that he wants all of
IBM's PCs to be running Linux by 2007 (beginning or end, I don't know).

There aren't many members of the curren Novell board that were around
in 1995, which was when Novell sold off Linux.  Perhaps Eric Schmidtt
would remember (I worked with a guy named Erik Schmidtt, but not THAT
Eric Schmidtt).

Has Michael Dell ever publicly stated why he started trying to sell PCs
with SCO preinstalled?  Has he ever publicly stated why he stopped so
shortly afterward?

It's hard to imagine that CEOs of corporations that have grown to huge
proportions over decades could take on a project which clearly required
a 2-3 year market development ramp-up, then simply shut it down, with
no public comment, even to the users who purchased the new products.  I
supposed it's possible, but it is hard to imagine.

It's much easier to imagine that Bill Gates, Steve Ballmer, or some
other top-ranking IBM executive took Michael Dell of to a really noisy
and isolated place, and "made him an offer he couldn't refuse".  It's
easier to imagine, but that doesn't mean that it happened.

On the other hand, it doesn't mean that it didn't.

> I won't go bothering any more successful people to prove your immature and
> ridiculous claims are untrue.

These particular claims, I can't prove - even to my own satisfaction,
to be true.
I got an e-mail, from someone who said he was in the meeting,  telling
me that Microsoft called a meeting, gave them an offer, told them they
had a very short amount of time to accept, or they would take actions
which - to those people, was a credible threat of eminant bankruptcy.

The threat, as described, seemed like something that people at Novell
would consider such a credible threat.

But maybe it never happened.  Maybe this guy was just a guy in a diner
who had never even set foot in Novell's offices, never even met a
Novell executive, and wouldn't have a clue as to what might constitute
a threat - he just threw together some buzzwords and came up with
something that I could see as a credible threat.

>  It was embarrassing enough for me to have to
> ask James Gosling about your wacked-out Java claim in the first place.

You got one response from one person.  Does that one person constitute
the entire development team?  I pointed to the possiblity that within
3-4 degrees of separation, there were enough intersections, that it is
well within the realm of possibility.

> And you're still convinced - erroneously - that your work on the Dow Data
> Protocol led to Java RMI,

Yes.  We wrote specifications and implemented something, in C++, that
is remarkably similar to RMI.  In addition, the consultants, partners,
and affiliations put us within 2 phone calls of top people at Sun.

> and by extension that Sun and James Gosling have
> perpetrated a fraud on the world since 1996.

Nope.  I did not say that.  It's quite possible that Sun may have hired
the same people we did, that these consultants and contractors created
work based on, but not directly copied from, DDP.  Several of my
alliance developers were using Sun machines and hired Sun consultants,
and recieved the full specifications of DDP along with reference
implementation code.

I did not say that I personally gave my DDP code directly to Jim
Gosling.  If I had done that, without the permission of Dow Jones, I
would have been in violation of my NDA and could even have gone to
jail.  I said my work on DDP lead to the development of RMI.

The differences are minor.  DDP used ASN.1, RMI used ONC and later
IIOP.  DDP text-mode used delimited tokens, RMI didn't have a "text
mode" but SOAP was similar.

> > This whole story could have been my terrible memory of a put-on hoax e-mail.
> > But it does make an interesting story.
> If not a somewhat sad one.

Only if you are a really big proponent of Microsoft whose entire
livelyhood depends on the ability to create Visual Basic interfaces to
SQL Server.

If you're a one-trick pony, a war-horse capable of full military
maneuvers is just a "show off".

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