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Monday, May 15, 2006

An unfortunate realization...

I have just been forced to come to the realization that, while I am a geek, it is of a highly unfocused variety and not in the useful manner that is in common usage in the programming and IT community. This realization was spawned when I realized I can't even program in Java decently, and am seriously considering buying a "Dummies" book for it. Perhaps "nerd" or "dork" would be more accurate, but in its current usage, I'm not a geek. At least I lack the monomania or all of the psychological diseases of an otaku, well, except for those that narrowly overlap with being a nerd or a dork, and only to those much smaller definitions.

And while I do believe Bill Gates is the enemy in the revival of the OS wars (google the reviews of the Vista betas), I think Steve Jobs is clearly the bigger asshole and idiot. His decision to control both the hardware and the OS, while producing a more stable product (though that's now questionable based on some stuff I read about security holes) kept the prices of his hardware artificially inflated. Add in his unwillingness to add x86 support for his operating system (though that may change with the Intel builds) and his obvious dictatorial designs, and you have the fall of Apple and the rise of Microsoft and PC hardware. And the thing of it is this didn't have to happen. Microsoft won the initial platform wars of the early 90s not with a superior product, but with a (for that time) good product, at least once 3.11 came out, and a strategy that was vastly superior to that of Apple, IBM (OS2 Warp), and I think even Linux was in its infancy back then. Well, it's 2006, and the new platform wars are upon us. This is, as it was back then, basically a two-horse race, and Microsoft is still one of the horses. The difference is that Apple isn't the other, and more's the pity; still, Linux, while each distribution is considerably smaller individually, the community as a whole is gaining a solid grass-roots support and is slowly becoming a serious challenger to Microsoft. I don't understand all of the issues of the IT world, as that is not my area of expertise. I do understand trends and at least the rudiments of tactical reasoning, and I am more than capable of recognizing when someone is being cool, and when they're being a tool, and Steve Jobs is, as he has always been, a tool. The Mac OS did not have to be on the brink of extinction as it has been at several points, and may even be dominant or coequal today if ego had not been allowed to supplant sound reasoning at the highest levels of Apple. Ownership of a company, even ownership of the loyalty of a community of customers, is not a divine right to profits or even continued survival. Such things are very valuable assets, not guarantors of future success. Just ask American Motor Company.

I mean no disrespect to the Mac users out there, it's just that your savior's (Steve Job's) feet are made of clay even moreso than your sworn enemy, Bill Gates. As a side note, I'm starting to find reading about the Vista betas particularly traumatic, as I'm getting flashbacks to Windows Millennium Edition. I feel my blue vocabulary starting to surface.

Also, I'm removing moderation from all posts on this blog, as I don't think the perv will be returning.

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