Apple Launch Amusing Mac Vs PC Advertising Campaign Fremantle awarded controversial match

More IT Predictions from Samuel

May 3rd, 2006 at 02:33pm

This was originally going to be a minor point in the article about Apple’s advertising campaign, but it has developed into an article in its own right.

I’ve already drawn two upgrade lines for Microsoft software, one being that I’m not upgrading MS Office beyond Office 2000, as Open Office is in my view a superior product (although I do still use MS Office 2000 for some tasks), and the other line being Internet Explorer, which is now relegated to use on IE-Centric sites only, as I much prefer Firefox and Opera (excluding Windows Update for which I use the faster and easier WindizUpdate).

I am now drawing another line: Windows XP will be the last version of Windows I ever use. Windows Vista will, in my opinion, be the proverbial straw which breaks the camel’s back. Windows has enjoyed a long reign at the top, but it is an outdated mess of security issues, Microsoft’s attempts to introduce proprietary standards (oxymoron), and various other problems which need fixing, much like Apple Mac OS 9 was before they released OS X with an entirely different base.

It is quite clear to me that both Mac and Linux have clear advantages over Windows, and I think the general public will also see this soon. The Ubuntu Linux people are doing a good job, and have made some interesting changes for the next version due in June, which does make it look like a good alternative to Windows.

The people at Apple have also done an excellent job on Mac OS X, and with their Boot Camp software providing Windows compatibility, I think it is now clear that Windows will become a secondary operating system with other operating systems taking the lead for a while.

Don’t get me wrong, Windows will still be there, it just won’t be the primary choice for most people, as they will use other operating systems for their day-to-day needs. Of course, there is every possibility that Windows will regain popularity in ten years or so when Mac and Linux start to stagnate and Windows shows ingenuity, after all Windows won favour over Mac and OS/2 by showing the lead a bit over ten years ago.

One thing I think is important here is that having multiple operating systems, multiple web browsers, multiple office suites etc, all gaining public favour is that it distributes the user base so drastically that it promotes ingenuity from all of the competing software writers, and makes life much harder for malicious users who would no longer have one bit of potentially vulnerable software giving them potential to wreak havoc on 90% or more of computer users. It also makes it necessary for software developers to use accepted standards (such as the Open Document Format, or the iCal calendar format) as their users will need to exchange data with other users. Open standards also allow everyone to work together on the future of IT according to their own needs, rather than working against each other, which effectively means that computers will do what people want, sooner rather than later.

Back to the security benefits of having multiple dominant operating systems and web broswers etc, the current situation looks somewhat similar to this (this is an example and probably isn’t entirely accurate, but is close enough):

  • Windows/Internet Explorer: 90%
  • Windows/Other browser: 6%
  • Other OS/Browser of any sort: 4%

Imagine if it looked something like this:

  • Mac/Safari: 20%
  • Mac/Firefox: 15%
  • Mac/Opera: 5%
  • Linux/Firefox: 20%
  • Linux/Konqueror: 10%
  • Linux/Opera: 10%
  • Windows/Internet Explorer: 15%
  • Windows/Firefox: 3%
  • Windows/Opera: 2%

Suddenly you have a mass distribution of users amongst all sorts of software, in which the vulnerabilities could very easily only work on one operating system and not the others. Even if one application did have a cross-platform vulnerability, the most damage it could do would be 38% (Firefox), which is a far cry from the 90% (Windows/Internet Explorer) in the first example. This makes maliciousness much more difficult and less rewarding, and also means that consumers have a greater choice as to which software combination works best for them, safe in the knowledge that their chosen software will be able to exchange data with somebody using different software on a different operating system.

Under the second example, things such as the recent WMF exploit wouldn’t have been as likely to occur due to less people using any particular operating system, would have been less damaging for the same reason, and would have seen a quicker response from the software vendor due to increased competition.

I will admit that I am partially anti-Microsoft, but that it because I think they have become very complacent in their monopolistic position, and day-to-day consumers who just want their computer to do one task or another, suffer as a result. Competition is needed here, and I think the Vista/Mac/Linux combination is about to make it happen.


Entry Filed under: IT News,Samuel's Editorials

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  • 1. Chuck A. Spear  |  May 3rd, 2006 at 3:13 pm

    I agree with you Samuel. I would go one step further and hope that Windows dies a slow and horrible death. Just like my old PC did because of Windows.

    However, I will throw a spanner in the ointment.

    As we speak I am developing an entirely new computer operating system. It will be based on the same random number generator as used in Samuel in Dolgnwot. In laymen’s terms, it will have a Dolgnwot core.

    It will also draw from aspects of Cup-O-Coffee-Meter. I have yet to work out the finer details but it will definitely have B&G packaging.

  • 2. John B1_B5  |  May 3rd, 2006 at 3:23 pm

    On the “Opera” thing – my favourite opera is Wagner’s “Twilight of the Gods” (Gotterdammerung ).

  • 3. Chuck A. Spear  |  May 3rd, 2006 at 3:31 pm

    The Opera Samuel is referring to is a Web Browser John.

  • 4. somac  |  May 3rd, 2006 at 10:22 pm

    Mr Spear, you are being absurd. Dolgnwot is not suitable for an enterprise computing environment. it is certainly not for domestic use. Dolgnwot technology is for cutting-edge fields such as aerospace, mining, and a nice garden in Reid.

    I believe Dolgnwot science will revolutionise I.T. However it will not be called Dolgnwot. Nefarious companies, and Microsoft, will pillage the useful Dolgnwot features. They will release their own shoddy, proprietary version. They will certainly not use Black and Gold packaging. And that is the woe of man.

  • 5. wonko the sane  |  May 4th, 2006 at 12:13 am

    While there is a lot of potential in the application of the Dlogtwon System in a personal computing environment, and yes, perhaps even in the aerospace industries, I think it’s still too dangerous to use.

    There is an element of unpredictability in its basic matrix which suggests a sort of mutation of the chaos theory. Some number experts are saying Dlogtwon is evil manifest in math.

    I say: err on the side of caution and tread very, very carefully on the soil of Dlogtwon.

  • 6. heatseeker  |  May 4th, 2006 at 12:44 am

    Wonko, sorry to be pedantic, but the Dolgnwot in its purest form is in fact “Gold Town” spelt backwards … the purists may refer to it as “Dlognwot”, however, some unenlightened teacher bastardised it as “Dolgnwot”, which is now the accepted usage.

    Please amed your spell check to correct “Dlogtwon”, which is an amalgamation of the pure and accepted, in future!

  • 7. heatseeker  |  May 4th, 2006 at 12:45 am

    Sorry Samuel .. not really my place to moderate on matters of editorial style … I think I’ll just go get a big rock and …

  • 8. Chuck A. Spear  |  May 4th, 2006 at 1:29 am

    News just in. A corresponent of mine has just faxed me from Geneva. He relayed to me that they have used the Dolgnwot System to not only identify 3 billion base pairs in the human genome with a minimal error rate but idenify and clone all known living genes.

  • 9. wonko the sane  |  May 4th, 2006 at 1:34 am

    Heatseeker, sincere apologies. Some pineapple pieces are heading my way.

  • 10. wonko the sane  |  May 4th, 2006 at 3:59 am

    Again, sorry, should be peices. I’ve generally had one too many pine peices when I’m on here.
    Maybe the cops should make spelling town gold backwards the test for drink drivers?

  • 11. John B1_B5  |  May 4th, 2006 at 9:24 am

    Might I suggest the name of “Dogglewort” ? (much easier to say — As in “St.John’s wort” ) .


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