Micro$oft in the news

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Thu Sep 6 08:46:47 MDT 2001

September 6, 2001
Justice Department Says It Will Not Seek Microsoft Breakup


The U.S. Justice Department said Thursday it was no longer seeking the
break-up of Microsoft Corp and would strive to find a remedy in the
three-year old case "as quickly as possible."

In a statement that pushed the technology's giant's shares higher, the
department said it would also not pursue an unresolved claim that the
company illegally tied its Internet Explorer browser to its Windows
operating system.



NY Times, September 6, 2001

Windows XP: Microsoft's New Look for Fall, in Size XXL

If technical and design merit were the only criteria for judging an
operating system, the release of Windows XP would be cause for jubilation.
Unfortunately, the inability to separate Microsoft's products from its
business practices tarnishes what could have been an exhilarating release.

For example, this is the first Windows version that's copy-protected. If
you try to install your copy onto a second computer - say, your laptop -
you'll find yourself locked out of the second machine after 30 days. News
of this feature alone has driven many enraged PC owners to consider moving
to the Macintosh, Linux or Amish country.

Furthermore, in the wake of Microsoft's legal squabbles with Sun
Microsystems, Windows XP omits support for the Java programming language,
which Sun created. To use Web sites that require Java, like online banking
and investment sites, you must download and install Java yourself. And
although Windows Media Player 8 looks better than ever, it still can't play
QuickTime or RealPlayer files. (Microsoft says Apple and RealNetworks,
respectively, denied it the necessary rights.)

There are privacy questions, too; at every turn, Windows XP tries to send
information about you back to the mother ship. During installation, you're
first asked if you're ready to "activate" your copy of XP (send information
about your PC's configuration to Microsoft), and then if you'd like to
register it (send your address and phone number to Microsoft). If you try
to use the Windows Messenger program, you're told you must sign up for a
Passport (send your e-mail address, city and ZIP code to Microsoft).

Microsoft swears that it will use your information only to serve you
better, but it's easy to be alarmed by the notion that a single company's
database may soon list 90 percent of the world's computers


Louis Proyect
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