John Dvorak Concedes 2007 was a "Crappy Year" for Windows Enthusiasts - Linux

This is a discussion on John Dvorak Concedes 2007 was a "Crappy Year" for Windows Enthusiasts - Linux ; Daniel Eran Dilger John Dvorak looked back at "another crappy career year for tech" and decided "Microsoft, Apple, and Google were to blame." Being right on one count out of three isn't a bad record for Dvorak, who typically gets ...

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Thread: John Dvorak Concedes 2007 was a "Crappy Year" for Windows Enthusiasts

  1. John Dvorak Concedes 2007 was a "Crappy Year" for Windows Enthusiasts


    Daniel Eran Dilger
    John Dvorak looked back at "another crappy career year for tech" and
    decided "Microsoft, Apple, and Google were to blame." Being right on
    one count out of three isn't a bad record for Dvorak, who typically
    gets everything wrong. Considering his self-flagellating lamentations
    of 2007 in PC Mag makes for a comical framework for looking back at a
    year that was particularly distressing to Windows Enthusiasts.

    Dvorak's Crapy Year.
    Among the problems for his "crappy" 2007 was that some irrelevant
    dictionary added "w00t" as its word of the year, and that the scrappy
    Nintendo Wii humiliated the Microsoft Xbox 360 and Sony PlayStation 3,
    as I predicted would likely happen. Microsoft was well represented in
    his list of complaints, with the WGA fiasco and the Windows Vista
    Yawn.

    PlayStation 3 vs. Xbox 360 vs. Nintendo Wii

    Clearly, 2007 was not a good year for Microsoft, but Dvorak forgot to
    mention the worst of Microsoft's problems:

    The Zune: nobody cared about Microsoft' embarrassing predicament a the
    hands of the iPod throughout 2007. After squirting out a tepid updates
    that made it look more competitive with the low end of last year's
    iPod line, Apple countered Microsoft's best efforts with the release
    of a series of new models that trounced Zune 2.0, from the thin Nano
    with games and video output to the Touch featuring a full web browser
    and live podcast playback over the web. Microsoft was left only to
    brag that it was finally able to sell off most of its 2006 inventory-
    already reported as sold-at fire sale prices.

    Windows Mobile: after struggling for a decade to get WinCE installed
    on something, Microsoft's plans largely focused on mobile smartphones.
    Unfortunately, in 2007 Apple targeted the same market with a device
    even hotter than the iPod. Even worse, while far more sophisticated
    and attractive, the iPhone paired with a service plan costs hundreds
    less than an entry level Windows Mobile phone such as the basic
    Motorola Q. No wonder Apple outsold the entire range of Windows Mobile
    devices in its first quarter of sales, and ended up with a stronger
    showing in web stats than every other mobile browser combined.

    Proprietary Formats: one key element to Microsoft's monopolistic
    control over the PC has been its use of proprietary formats to force
    users into buying everything from Microsoft. However, in 2007 a
    variety of events eroded into that stranglehold. Windows Media DRM was
    given the final boot in audio with MPEG AAC, and video with H.264. The
    ISO rejected Microsoft's OOXML advanced to replace the existing Open
    Document standard for productivity applications. Even DirectX is
    facing increasing competition from Mac, Linux, Playstation, and Wii
    applications that all use OpenGL for their graphics.

    The Vista Yawn: Microsoft discovered, as I predicted, that 2007 wasn't
    going to be like 1995. Retail Vista sales were disappointing to say
    the least, corporate interest was simply absent, and even hardware
    makers balked at loading up Vista Home Basic and forcing their users
    to upgrade to a more expensive version that actually works as
    expected.

    Windows 95 and Vista: Why 2007 Won't Be Like 1995

    Vista uptake has been reported to be about half that of Windows XP,
    despite the fact that the PC market has grown significantly since 2001
    and the reality that many Windows PC users regularly buy new computers
    just to run away from their old infected machines rather than paying
    to clean their old system out. Exacerbating the Vista problem is the
    pestilent detail that an increasing number of users are now buying
    Macs so they can run both yesterday's Windows XP and upgrade to Mac OS
    X without the security problems, spyware, and adware push.

    [Dvorak's April 07 comment that Vista's problems due to PC makers...]

    Dvorak recommended that Microsoft build its own PC and screw over its
    Windows licensee partners. Yes, that worked so well with the Zune!
    Perhaps if Microsoft shipped its own Windows PC, it wouldn't break
    compatibility between its MS PC and third party boxes, but imagine the
    profits behind selling Office for MS PC-Windows separately from Office
    for regular Windows.

    The downside to Dvorak's hardware fantasy is that Microsoft has no
    expertise in making or marketing functional hardware. Look at the
    billion dollar losses behind the Xbox line, along with its 33% or
    greater record for hardware failure. And look at what Microsoft did to
    WebTV, MSNTV, and even its best ideas for music players, handheld
    gaming, SPOT watches and other hardware that all stunk to high heaven.

    [Dvorak complaints about Apple, Google...]

    Microsoft was up 19.2%, Google 50.2%, but Apple was up 133.5% [in
    2007]. No wonder Dvorak is kvetching.

    [Dvorak's bad predictions about iPhone...]

    Of course, reality is beyond him because Dvorak has no technical
    competency in predicting what will work out and what won't. Why does
    Dvorak command $40,000 speaking engagements despite not having written
    anything interesting, accurate, or thought provoking in the last
    decade? He's a professional troll. Fortunately for him, nobody in the
    speaking engagement circuit or sound-bite seeking world of New
    Journalism cares about substance.


    http://www.roughlydrafted.com/2008/0...s-enthusiasts/

  2. Re: John Dvorak Concedes 2007 was a "Crappy Year" for Windows Enthusiasts

    * nessuno@wigner.berkeley.edu fired off this tart reply:

    >


    This one was a laffer for me:

    > The Zune: nobody cared about Microsoft' embarrassing predicament a the
    > hands of the iPod throughout 2007. After squirting out a tepid updates
    > that made it look more competitive with the low end of last year's
    > iPod line, Apple countered Microsoft's best efforts with the release
    > of a series of new models that trounced Zune 2.0, from the thin Nano
    > with games and video output to the Touch featuring a full web browser
    > and live podcast playback over the web. Microsoft was left only to
    > brag that it was finally able to sell off most of its 2006 inventory-
    > already reported as sold-at fire sale prices.


    Already reported as sold. What other MS product does that sound like?

    Here's another laffer:

    > Dvorak recommended that Microsoft build its own PC and screw over its
    > Windows licensee partners. Yes, that worked so well with the Zune!
    > . . .
    >
    > The downside to Dvorak's hardware fantasy is that Microsoft has no
    > expertise in making or marketing functional hardware. Look at the
    > billion dollar losses behind the Xbox line, along with its 33% or
    > greater record for hardware failure. And look at what Microsoft did to
    > WebTV, MSNTV, and even its best ideas for music players, handheld
    > gaming, SPOT watches and other hardware that all stunk to high heaven.
    >
    > http://www.roughlydrafted.com/2008/0...s-enthusiasts/


    Their keyboards aren't too bad though.

    --
    GNU/Linux rox, Tux!

  3. Re: John Dvorak Concedes 2007 was a "Crappy Year" for WindowsEnthusiasts


    >
    > Their keyboards aren't too bad though.


    I used to say that about their mouse, too, but recently I've switched
    to Logitech and like it much better (costs more, though). My
    keyboard is an IBM/Lenovo. Need to find one without the Microsoft
    flag.

    To me one of the most interesting things about the article is the
    quotes on stock prices over the last year:

    Microsoft up 15%
    Google up 50%
    Apple up 133%

    I think if you look over the last 5 years the comparison is even more
    dramatic. I recall figures like $7 for Apple 5 years ago vs $200
    now. I may not have these figures correct, but I think it is true
    that Apple has been an extremely good investment in recent years,
    while Microsoft has been so-so. I'd be interested to see graphs of
    stock prices for all these companies in the last five years, RedHat
    and Novell too. We know what happened to SCO. Meanwhile, trolls on
    cola are bragging about how good an investment Microsoft is.

    Market share is another statistic I'd like to see quantified
    (honestly, I mean). Of course it's slippery to define, for example,
    Apple is stronger in the US than elsewhere, and Linux is stronger
    elsewhere than in the US. And for many other reasons. But it
    certainly looks like both Apple and Linux are eating into Microsoft's
    share of the desktop, from opposite ends, although Linux is currently
    small.



  4. Re: John Dvorak Concedes 2007 was a "Crappy Year" for Windows Enthusiasts

    ____/ nessuno@wigner.berkeley.edu on Wednesday 02 January 2008 23:22 : \____

    > Microsoft * up 15%
    > Google * * *up 50%
    > Apple * * * *up 133%
    >
    > I think if you look over the last 5 years the comparison is even more
    > dramatic.


    It means very little. Microsoft is pumping cash into the stock. In general,
    stock price does not indicate much because it doesn't just gauge actual
    wealth. IBM and Dell, IIRC, are in heavy buyback mode as well. Novell will
    inevitably end up this way as well.

    --
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  5. Re: John Dvorak Concedes 2007 was a "Crappy Year" for WindowsEnthusiasts

    On Wed, 02 Jan 2008 18:00:49 -0500, Linonut wrote:

    > Their keyboards aren't too bad though.


    As a matter of principle, I won't purchase or recommend for purchase
    anything branded with the Microsoft label unless absolutely necessary.


  6. Re: John Dvorak Concedes 2007 was a "Crappy Year" for Windows Enthusiasts

    ____/ alt on Thursday 03 January 2008 01:06 : \____

    > On Wed, 02 Jan 2008 18:00:49 -0500, Linonut wrote:
    >
    >> Their keyboards aren't too bad though.

    >
    > As a matter of principle, I won't purchase or recommend for purchase
    > anything branded with the Microsoft label unless absolutely necessary.


    if you feed the ogres, they'll never leave.

    --
    ~~ Best of wishes

    "The number of developers working on improving Linux vastly exceeds the number
    of Microsoft developers working on Windows NT."
    --Paul Maritz, Microsoft

  7. Re: John Dvorak Concedes 2007 was a "Crappy Year" for Windows Enthusiasts

    * alt fired off this tart reply:

    > On Wed, 02 Jan 2008 18:00:49 -0500, Linonut wrote:
    >
    >> Their keyboards aren't too bad though.

    >
    > As a matter of principle, I won't purchase or recommend for purchase
    > anything branded with the Microsoft label unless absolutely necessary.


    The MS Ergonomic 4000 was on sale at Office Depot. But gone by the time
    I got there. So now I'm thinking of ordering an Inland Ergonomic via
    Tiger Direct. Probably still has the Genuine Monopoly Logo on it, though.

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  8. Re: John Dvorak Concedes 2007 was a "Crappy Year" for Windows Enthusiasts

    In article ,
    Linonut wrote:
    > This one was a laffer for me:
    >
    > > The Zune: nobody cared about Microsoft' embarrassing predicament a the
    > > hands of the iPod throughout 2007. After squirting out a tepid updates
    > > that made it look more competitive with the low end of last year's
    > > iPod line, Apple countered Microsoft's best efforts with the release
    > > of a series of new models that trounced Zune 2.0, from the thin Nano
    > > with games and video output to the Touch featuring a full web browser
    > > and live podcast playback over the web. Microsoft was left only to
    > > brag that it was finally able to sell off most of its 2006 inventory-
    > > already reported as sold-at fire sale prices.

    >
    > Already reported as sold. What other MS product does that sound like?


    On the other hand, Zune isn't the only player that was trounced by iPod.
    All of the others were, too. Just compare among the non-iPod players,
    and Zune is actually doing well. Among hard disk players, it seems to
    have one of the best price/capacity ratios. It's main problem there is
    iPod--the iPod Classic has the same price/capacity ratio for the 80 GB
    model, and iPod also offers 160 GB which beats it, and the others.

    Of course, iPod exists, so doing well among the non-iPods isn't all that
    spectacular.

    --
    --Tim Smith

  9. Re: John Dvorak Concedes 2007 was a "Crappy Year" for WindowsEnthusiasts

    On Jan 2, 6:22 pm, "ness...@wigner.berkeley.edu"
    wrote:
    > > Their keyboards aren't too bad though.


    > I used to say that about their mouse, too, but recently I've switched
    > to Logitech and like it much better (costs more, though). My
    > keyboard is an IBM/Lenovo.


    I use a Logitech trackball, but most of the time I just use my
    ThinkPad "stick", or occasionally

    > Need to find one without the Microsoft flag.


    I'm less concerned about the flag on the keyboard, than I am about how
    quickly and easily I can easily I can get the whole computer running
    Linux.

    > To me one of the most interesting things about the article is the
    > quotes on stock prices over the last year:
    >
    > Microsoft up 15%
    > Google up 50%
    > Apple up 133%


    He forgot:
    Linux related portion of Novell's revenue - up 69%
    Lenovo (Linux now runs on almost all models) - up 150%

    Gateway (loyal to Microsoft) - down to less than $1/share before being
    sold to Acer

    Acer, a big supporter of Linux and open critic of Vista, has gone from
    $40/share in August 2006, and has soared to almost $80/share in
    October 2009.



    > I think if you look over the last 5 years the comparison is even more
    > dramatic. I recall figures like $7 for Apple 5 years ago vs $200
    > now.


    Close enough, on April 17, of 2003, the price was as low as $6.65.

    > I may not have these figures correct, but I think it is true
    > that Apple has been an extremely good investment in recent years,
    > while Microsoft has been so-so.


    Microsoft stock hung between $23 and $27 from 2001 to 2006, and has
    only climbed to between $32 and $37 in 2007, and even those increases
    were based on Microsoft's self-funding of it's distribution channels,
    and some stock buy-backs. At the same time, insiders have sold almost
    41 million shares directly back to Microsoft.

    > I'd be interested to see graphs of
    > stock prices for all these companies in the last five years, RedHat
    > and Novell too. We know what happened to SCO. Meanwhile, trolls on
    > cola are bragging about how good an investment Microsoft is.


    Look at the "Pure Microsoft" plays.
    Gateway - now nearly bankrupt taken over by Acer.
    SCO - now nearly bankrupt.

    It seems that Bill has reduced his 2 billion shares to 857 million.
    Ballmer is down to 408 million.
    Paul Allen has sold off.
    John Shirley has only 1.4 million,
    and Jeffrey Raikes only 5.4 million shares.

    Gates is 52 and ready to retire.
    Ballmer is about the same, and not in the best of health.

    Methinks that some of the big institutional investors are about to get
    "stuck", some could lose as much as $15 billion.

    > Market share is another statistic I'd like to see quantified
    > (honestly, I mean).


    You, me, and everyone else in the industry. There does seem to be a
    strong indicator that Vista is not doing well. After one year, Vista
    has only penetrated 4% of what is supposed to be "Microsoft's" market.

    PC unit volumes are down, prices have eroded to pre-XP prices, even
    though they now have twice as much memory, storage, and CPU power.

    There seems to be a dearth of market statistics.
    How many OpenGL compatible adapters were sold?
    Browser statistics just say who owns the most IP addresses.
    Counting page-views doesn't count squid cached pages.

    But let's look at some of the companies who DO count USERS, and can
    tell when they are using Linux or "Other" that is probably Linux.

    Microsoft - has declared Linux "enemy number one". When testifying
    under oath, Microsoft testified that Linux had 17% of the market, when
    browser surveys said it only had 1%, and that was in the 2002 EU
    trial.

    Google - has become a huge supporter of Linux and Open Source.

    Sun - big supporter of Linux.

    Yahoo and AOL - now Linux friendly.

    Adobe - now releasing Linux version at same time as Windodws.

    IBM - has client software for Linux, including Lotus Notes 8 and Lotus
    Symphony.

    Secondary indicators:

    Mozilla FireFox - downloaded by over 1/2 billion users, estimated to
    be used by almost 40% of all PC users (using skewed browser survey).

    OpenOffice - 100 million "official" downloads, actual downloads
    estimated at over 250 million.

    An old classic, "sizing the Linux Market" written by Bob Young in 1997
    http://bat8.inria.fr/~lang/hotlist/f...nuxmarket.html

    It shows many of the problems of trying to "count" Linux users.

    We have a pretty good idea of how fast the market is growing (about
    70% per year since 2001, and about 200% from 1996 to 2001.

    XP slowed the momentum of Linux, but didn't stop it, and Linux seems
    to still have been growing at 3-5 times the rate of Microsoft. Of
    course, Microsoft has been shipped with 100 million PC per year,

    Even survey methods are flawed, because many Linux users use BOTH
    Windows AND Linux, often on the same PC. Most surveys assume that you
    can only run one OR the other.

    This is also the flaw in PC marketing. Instead of offering the choice
    of Windows OR Linux, the OEMs need to offer the option of Windows AND
    Linux (for a higher price of course).

    This is also Microsoft's flaw in claiming market share. Microsoft
    wants us to assume that just because a PC is SOLD with Windows, that
    Windows is the only operating system that will ever be installed.

    > Of course it's slippery to define, for example,
    > Apple is stronger in the US than elsewhere,


    Apple is also very popular in Europe as well.

    > and Linux is stronger
    > elsewhere than in the US. And for many other reasons.


    Linux just plays a different role.

    Keep in mind that Linux is more than just the kernel, it's also the
    entire suite of Open Source Software, and the Open Standards, and this
    is where Linux is really winning.

    > But it certainly looks like both Apple and Linux are
    > eating into Microsoft's share of the desktop,


    More importantly, Vista has stalled severely.

    Microsoft took a huge gamble at several levels. They tried to make
    Vista an "All or Nothing" proposition. They were hoping to force
    Linux completely off the PC platform. They wrote this into their
    license agreements. They wrote this into their OEM agreements. They
    wrote this into their software. They added features which would allow
    Microsoft to prevent the installations of boot managers, prevent the
    installation of virtualization software, and prevent the installation
    of software that has not been "certified" as safe by Microsoft.

    Microsoft also required end-users to grant them permission to disable
    their computers if Microsoft detected a license violation, which could
    be falsely triggered by such things as disk partitioning, disk
    replacement, or adding disks.

    It all backfired. Microsoft inappropriately killed lots of innocent
    computers. They alienated Linux users against Vista. Unfortunately,
    this included many corporate customers who mandated that all new PCs
    be "Linux Ready" in case Microsoft tried to disable their licenses.

    Microsoft also tried to require that PCs be configured with DirectX-10
    video cards in order to get it to do the "WOW" things shown in the
    television advertizing. The problem was that most of the PCs being
    sold were being chosen to be "Linux Ready".

    The net result is that even though Microsoft has claimed about 100
    million Vista licenses over the last year, only about 40 million of
    them seem to actually be running Vista. Most were actually shipped
    with XP.

    > from opposite ends,
    > although Linux is currently small.


    You might be surprised. Remember, even though Microsoft has about 10
    years worth of computers, roughly 1 billion PCs, out there in the
    marketplace, their market isn''t growing significantly. Meanwhile,
    many PCs originally sold with Windows are being converted to Linux.
    Many of these PCs are "hybrids" running both Linux and Windows at the
    same time.

    It's quite possible that the number of Linux users, including those
    using Linux on hybrid machines, could increase by over 100 million
    this year. Meanwhile, Microsoft has been able to get Vista to even 40
    million PCs, and most of those PCs are replacements for existing
    Windows users, which means no net gain in market share.

    Statistically, on a quarter by quarter basis, Linux is "outselling"
    Windows in terms of generating new users and incremental market share.

    The real question is how to measure the Linux population accurately.
    The first problem is that you have to assume that Linux users may be
    using BOTH Linux and Windows from the same location. You need to
    count each environment uniquely, but only once.

    But even if you did get that information, you probably wouldn't be
    allowed to publish your findings, and even if you did want to publish
    it, you would probably join the various other researchers who charge
    $2000 to $5000 PER VIEWER for their reports.



  10. Re: John Dvorak Concedes 2007 was a "Crappy Year" for Windows Enthusiasts

    * Tim Smith fired off this tart reply:

    > In article ,
    > Linonut wrote:
    >>
    >> > ... Apple countered Microsoft's best efforts with the release
    >> > of a series of new models that trounced Zune 2.0, ...
    >> > Microsoft was left only to
    >> > brag that it was finally able to sell off most of its 2006 inventory-
    >> > already reported as sold-at fire sale prices.

    >
    > On the other hand, Zune isn't the only player that was trounced by iPod.
    > All of the others were, too. Just compare among the non-iPod players,
    > and Zune is actually doing well.


    What, all the other manufacturers are also dumping their already-sold
    hardware at fire-sale prices?

    > Among hard disk players, it seems to
    > have one of the best price/capacity ratios. It's main problem there is
    > iPod--the iPod Classic has the same price/capacity ratio for the 80 GB
    > model, and iPod also offers 160 GB which beats it, and the others.
    >
    > Of course, iPod exists, so doing well among the non-iPods isn't all that
    > spectacular.


    The point is, I think, that Microsoft's big crusher fell flat, and
    Microsoft, unlike Apple, doesn't seem to have a follow-through plan.

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  11. Re: John Dvorak Concedes 2007 was a "Crappy Year" for Windows Enthusiasts

    * Rex Ballard fired off this tart reply:

    > PC unit volumes are down, prices have eroded to pre-XP prices, even
    > though they now have twice as much memory, storage, and CPU power.


    We've noticed.

    > The net result is that even though Microsoft has claimed about 100
    > million Vista licenses over the last year, only about 40 million of
    > them seem to actually be running Vista. Most were actually shipped
    > with XP.
    >
    > . . .
    >
    > But even if you did get that information, you probably wouldn't be
    > allowed to publish your findings, and even if you did want to publish
    > it, you would probably join the various other researchers who charge
    > $2000 to $5000 PER VIEWER for their reports.



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  12. Re: John Dvorak Concedes 2007 was a "Crappy Year" for WindowsEnthusiasts

    On Jan 2, 4:56 pm, Roy Schestowitz wrote:
    > ____/ ness...@wigner.berkeley.edu on Wednesday 02 January 2008 23:22 : \____
    >
    > > Microsoft up 15%
    > > Google up 50%
    > > Apple up 133%

    >
    > > I think if you look over the last 5 years the comparison is even more
    > > dramatic.

    >
    > It means very little. Microsoft is pumping cash into the stock. In general,
    > stock price does not indicate much because it doesn't just gauge actual
    > wealth. IBM and Dell, IIRC, are in heavy buyback mode as well. Novell will
    > inevitably end up this way as well.


    Yes, I've read how many large corporations in the US are buying back
    stock. But to the extent that is true of Microsoft, it means that
    their 15% gain means less than it seems. I don't know if Apple has
    been buying back stock, but surely their 133% gain is related to the
    success of iPod, iPhone and OS/X.

  13. Re: John Dvorak Concedes 2007 was a "Crappy Year" for Windows Enthusiasts

    Linonut wrote:

    >* Tim Smith fired off this tart reply:
    >>
    >> On the other hand, Zune isn't the only player that was trounced by iPod.
    >> All of the others were, too. Just compare among the non-iPod players,
    >> and Zune is actually doing well.

    >
    >What, all the other manufacturers are also dumping their already-sold
    >hardware at fire-sale prices?
    >
    >> Among hard disk players, it seems to
    >> have one of the best price/capacity ratios. It's main problem there is
    >> iPod--the iPod Classic has the same price/capacity ratio for the 80 GB
    >> model, and iPod also offers 160 GB which beats it, and the others.
    >>
    >> Of course, iPod exists, so doing well among the non-iPods isn't all that
    >> spectacular.

    >
    >The point is, I think, that Microsoft's big crusher fell flat, and
    >Microsoft, unlike Apple, doesn't seem to have a follow-through plan.


    I would also point-out that the Zune has failed despite the benefit of
    a massive marketing campaign, the buying of "end-cap space" in stores,
    etc, that other "non Ipods" have not had. Not to mention Micro$oft's
    brand-name recognition and support of the Zune.

    *unplonk* Timmy Smith. (It's slow around here.)


  14. Re: John Dvorak Concedes 2007 was a "Crappy Year" for Windows Enthusiasts

    nessuno@wigner.berkeley.edu espoused:
    > On Jan 2, 4:56 pm, Roy Schestowitz wrote:
    >> ____/ ness...@wigner.berkeley.edu on Wednesday 02 January 2008 23:22 : \____
    >>
    >> > Microsoft up 15%
    >> > Google up 50%
    >> > Apple up 133%

    >>
    >> > I think if you look over the last 5 years the comparison is even more
    >> > dramatic.

    >>
    >> It means very little. Microsoft is pumping cash into the stock. In general,
    >> stock price does not indicate much because it doesn't just gauge actual
    >> wealth. IBM and Dell, IIRC, are in heavy buyback mode as well. Novell will
    >> inevitably end up this way as well.

    >
    > Yes, I've read how many large corporations in the US are buying back
    > stock. But to the extent that is true of Microsoft, it means that
    > their 15% gain means less than it seems. I don't know if Apple has
    > been buying back stock, but surely their 133% gain is related to the
    > success of iPod, iPhone and OS/X.


    The actual share price is meaningless unless you multiply it by the
    number of shares in order to get the actual market cap.

    As Microsoft have been buying back shares, they have been reducing their
    market cap by the value of each of these shares which they bought back,
    although that is ameliorated by the rise in value which went on at the
    same time.

    You then need to take into account the indices of the market for the
    same period, and as far as possible look at how the overall market
    moved. If they overall market moved up by, say, 10%, then Microsoft's
    15% is really a 5% increase above the market, which might be almost
    entirely funded by share buy-back, thus reducing their market cap by the
    value of those shares.

    Of course, analysts look at this stuff all the time, but as many of them
    are non-technical, they often get things wrong, as they are as much
    driven by mathematical analysis of reported financial performance plus
    ongoing trading as they are by a deep understanding of the actual market
    in which the company operates.

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  15. Re: John Dvorak Concedes 2007 was a "Crappy Year" for WindowsEnthusiasts

    On Jan 3, 12:22 am, "ness...@wigner.berkeley.edu"
    wrote:
    > I used to say that about their mouse, too, but recently I've switched
    > to Logitech and like it much better (costs more, though). My
    > keyboard is an IBM/Lenovo. Need to find one without the Microsoft
    > flag.
    >


    If you want to have a keyboard without the windows flag, here are som
    examples of those that don't. I'm pretty certain that neither of these
    are what you are looking for, maybe the last.

    http://www.daskeyboard.com/

    Das keyboard is a really exclusive keyboard, for anyone who want to
    learn to type fast. Then there is the budget version of das keyboard,
    that is called bzerk blank. I got that one, and think that it is
    really good. It takes a little time to get used to. I still make alot
    of typos after 2 to 3 weeks of using it, but I'm getting alot faster.

    Then there is happy hacking keyboard, which might be something that
    you are looking for.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Happy_Hacking_Keyboard

    It exists in three different version, of which only one is available
    today. It is slimmer and lacks a lot of the keys that exists on
    ordinary keyboards, but those are often unnecessary and makes you
    slower at typing.

    /Your friendly neighbourhood Ewok

  16. Re: John Dvorak Concedes 2007 was a "Crappy Year" for Windows Enthusiasts


    wrote in message
    news:3b337575-0c7e-44b0-8087-1d94f989bcf6@d21g2000prf.googlegroups.com...
    >
    > Daniel Eran Dilger
    > John Dvorak looked back at "another crappy career year for tech" and
    > decided "Microsoft, Apple, and Google were to blame." Being right on
    > one count out of three isn't a bad record for Dvorak, who typically
    > gets everything wrong. Considering his self-flagellating lamentations
    > of 2007 in PC Mag makes for a comical framework for looking back at a
    > year that was particularly distressing to Windows Enthusiasts.
    >
    > Dvorak's Crapy Year.
    > Among the problems for his "crappy" 2007 was that some irrelevant
    > dictionary added "w00t" as its word of the year, and that the scrappy
    > Nintendo Wii humiliated the Microsoft Xbox 360 and Sony PlayStation 3,
    > as I predicted would likely happen. Microsoft was well represented in
    > his list of complaints, with the WGA fiasco and the Windows Vista
    > Yawn.
    >
    > PlayStation 3 vs. Xbox 360 vs. Nintendo Wii
    >
    > Clearly, 2007 was not a good year for Microsoft, but Dvorak forgot to
    > mention the worst of Microsoft's problems:
    >
    > The Zune: nobody cared about Microsoft' embarrassing predicament a the
    > hands of the iPod throughout 2007. After squirting out a tepid updates
    > that made it look more competitive with the low end of last year's
    > iPod line, Apple countered Microsoft's best efforts with the release
    > of a series of new models that trounced Zune 2.0, from the thin Nano
    > with games and video output to the Touch featuring a full web browser
    > and live podcast playback over the web. Microsoft was left only to
    > brag that it was finally able to sell off most of its 2006 inventory-
    > already reported as sold-at fire sale prices.
    >
    > Windows Mobile: after struggling for a decade to get WinCE installed
    > on something, Microsoft's plans largely focused on mobile smartphones.
    > Unfortunately, in 2007 Apple targeted the same market with a device
    > even hotter than the iPod. Even worse, while far more sophisticated
    > and attractive, the iPhone paired with a service plan costs hundreds
    > less than an entry level Windows Mobile phone such as the basic
    > Motorola Q. No wonder Apple outsold the entire range of Windows Mobile
    > devices in its first quarter of sales, and ended up with a stronger
    > showing in web stats than every other mobile browser combined.
    >
    > Proprietary Formats: one key element to Microsoft's monopolistic
    > control over the PC has been its use of proprietary formats to force
    > users into buying everything from Microsoft. However, in 2007 a
    > variety of events eroded into that stranglehold. Windows Media DRM was
    > given the final boot in audio with MPEG AAC, and video with H.264. The
    > ISO rejected Microsoft's OOXML advanced to replace the existing Open
    > Document standard for productivity applications. Even DirectX is
    > facing increasing competition from Mac, Linux, Playstation, and Wii
    > applications that all use OpenGL for their graphics.
    >
    > The Vista Yawn: Microsoft discovered, as I predicted, that 2007 wasn't
    > going to be like 1995. Retail Vista sales were disappointing to say
    > the least, corporate interest was simply absent, and even hardware
    > makers balked at loading up Vista Home Basic and forcing their users
    > to upgrade to a more expensive version that actually works as
    > expected.
    >
    > Windows 95 and Vista: Why 2007 Won't Be Like 1995
    >
    > Vista uptake has been reported to be about half that of Windows XP,
    > despite the fact that the PC market has grown significantly since 2001
    > and the reality that many Windows PC users regularly buy new computers
    > just to run away from their old infected machines rather than paying
    > to clean their old system out. Exacerbating the Vista problem is the
    > pestilent detail that an increasing number of users are now buying
    > Macs so they can run both yesterday's Windows XP and upgrade to Mac OS
    > X without the security problems, spyware, and adware push.
    >
    > [Dvorak's April 07 comment that Vista's problems due to PC makers...]
    >
    > Dvorak recommended that Microsoft build its own PC and screw over its
    > Windows licensee partners. Yes, that worked so well with the Zune!
    > Perhaps if Microsoft shipped its own Windows PC, it wouldn't break
    > compatibility between its MS PC and third party boxes, but imagine the
    > profits behind selling Office for MS PC-Windows separately from Office
    > for regular Windows.
    >
    > The downside to Dvorak's hardware fantasy is that Microsoft has no
    > expertise in making or marketing functional hardware. Look at the
    > billion dollar losses behind the Xbox line, along with its 33% or
    > greater record for hardware failure. And look at what Microsoft did to
    > WebTV, MSNTV, and even its best ideas for music players, handheld
    > gaming, SPOT watches and other hardware that all stunk to high heaven.
    >
    > [Dvorak complaints about Apple, Google...]
    >
    > Microsoft was up 19.2%, Google 50.2%, but Apple was up 133.5% [in
    > 2007]. No wonder Dvorak is kvetching.
    >
    > [Dvorak's bad predictions about iPhone...]
    >
    > Of course, reality is beyond him because Dvorak has no technical
    > competency in predicting what will work out and what won't. Why does
    > Dvorak command $40,000 speaking engagements despite not having written
    > anything interesting, accurate, or thought provoking in the last
    > decade? He's a professional troll. Fortunately for him, nobody in the
    > speaking engagement circuit or sound-bite seeking world of New
    > Journalism cares about substance.
    >

    >
    > http://www.roughlydrafted.com/2008/0...s-enthusiasts/


    Can you not find anyone more authoritative than this pathetic lamester to
    cite? Good grief! You might as well make up your own rant as feed this
    fool's tripe to the world. I didn't realize the current Berkley crowd was
    so shy.

    He begs for cash and click-throughs like a bower bum looking for a buck to
    round out the purchase of another pint of muscatel.

    He sneers at Dvorak for commanding high speaker fees and begs for pennies in
    the same breath.

    And he ignores that Vista has currently shipped some 130 million copies in
    the first 11 months, far surpassing Win95 as he mistakenly claims had a
    faster sales pace. How typical of the OSS folk.


  17. Re: John Dvorak Concedes 2007 was a "Crappy Year" for WindowsEnthusiasts

    Thanks for the info on keyboards!


  18. Re: John Dvorak Concedes 2007 was a "Crappy Year" for Windows Enthusiasts

    In article ,
    Linonut wrote:
    > > On the other hand, Zune isn't the only player that was trounced by iPod.
    > > All of the others were, too. Just compare among the non-iPod players,
    > > and Zune is actually doing well.

    >
    > What, all the other manufacturers are also dumping their already-sold
    > hardware at fire-sale prices?


    I'm not talking about the ones that were on sale. The current models,
    at their regular price, are doing well among the non-iPod players. For
    example, when I check the Amazon top sellers for MP3 players, more often
    than not, it is a current Zune that is the first non-iPod among the sea
    of iPods in the top 15.

    --
    --Tim Smith

  19. Re: John Dvorak Concedes 2007 was a "Crappy Year" for WindowsEnthusiasts

    On Jan 3, 9:26 am, Roy Schestowitz wrote:
    > ____/ ness...@wigner.berkeley.edu on Thursday 03 January 2008 15:55 : \____
    >
    >
    >
    > > On Jan 2, 4:56 pm, Roy Schestowitz wrote:
    > >> ____/ ness...@wigner.berkeley.edu on Wednesday 02 January 2008 23:22 : \____

    >
    > >> > Microsoft up 15%
    > >> > Google up 50%
    > >> > Apple up 133%

    >
    > >> > I think if you look over the last 5 years the comparison is even more
    > >> > dramatic.

    >
    > >> It means very little. Microsoft is pumping cash into the stock. In general,
    > >> stock price does not indicate much because it doesn't just gauge actual
    > >> wealth. IBM and Dell, IIRC, are in heavy buyback mode as well. Novell will
    > >> inevitably end up this way as well.

    >
    > > Yes, I've read how many large corporations in the US are buying back
    > > stock. But to the extent that is true of Microsoft, it means that
    > > their 15% gain means less than it seems. I don't know if Apple has
    > > been buying back stock, but surely their 133% gain is related to the
    > > success of iPod, iPhone and OS/X.

    >
    > I don't watch Apple to be honest (I closely track RHT/RHAT, NOVL, INTC, AMD,
    > IBM, MSFT, ^FTSE and SCOX in the finance feeds), but all that I know based on
    > bankers' word is that Novell is *advised* to buy back stock (many layoffs
    > coming next year and jobs continue to move east-wards). It's not looking great
    > for the US economy in general and I suppose you've heard about the price of
    > oil (a Benjamin per barrel).


    The Sibold troll is posting an item on how great Apple has been doing,
    and taunting Linux advocates. I think he's a Wintroll not an Apple
    troll, which is odd since the news is mostly bad for Microsoft, not
    Linux. Also, even according to NetApplications, Linux is up from
    about 0.35% in Jan 07 to 0.66% now. I don't know what their
    methodology is, I couldn't find out, for example, these are OS
    statistics as reported by browser hits? In the US only? I'm guessing
    that this represents desktop usage in the US. But the point is that
    both Apple and Linux are up in the last year, Windows is down, getting
    nibbled from both directions. At this point Apple and Linux are not
    competing much with each other. But the report on Apple in the last
    few days really is impressive. Looks like half the universe got a Mac
    and an iPhone for Christmas. My father-in-law was one (Mac last fall,
    iPhone for xmas). I hadn't seen an iPhone before. It's really
    beautiful, I've got to say. My father-in-law is deaf, so he doesn't
    use the phone part, but he does do a lot of internet from hand-held
    devices (his main way of communicating), and he's a technology nut.
    He also loves his new Mac and vows never to go back to Windows, which
    he used for 10 years. Anyway, I'd love to see Ballmer's face when he
    sees these statistics. I won't feed the Sibold troll, but this is
    an interesting story. All the curves I've seen on Apple are aiming
    for the stars, so it's got to give Billy and company bad dreams.

    2007 has been a bad year for Microsoft. I can't wait to see what 2008
    will bring.


  20. Re: John Dvorak Concedes 2007 was a "Crappy Year" for Windows Enthusiasts

    * [H]omer fired off this tart reply:

    >> The MS Ergonomic 4000 was on sale at Office Depot. But gone by the time
    >> I got there. So now I'm thinking of ordering an Inland Ergonomic via
    >> Tiger Direct. Probably still has the Genuine Monopoly Logo on it, though.

    >
    > Get a Cherry Linux keyboard:
    >
    > http://www.cherry.de/english/product...6188_linux.htm


    Nah, I want an ergo one. Turns out Office Depot had them stocked in an
    out of the way spot, so I got one now. Not bad, need to loosen up the
    keys a bit and get used to the Microsoft key spacing.

    Turns out there's a lot of information and some kernel support for the
    idiot buttons, too.

    --
    This sig has expired. Please reactivate your sig by paying $0.25
    and entering the 30-character activation key that will be emailed to
    your account.

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