Monday, February 25, 2008

The Contest, and a Rant.

First, important business, then onto my opinionated rant.

For the winner of last night's contest. I have to select zacksback's: Reruns of The View.

Frankly, just thinking about The View makes me want to run down stairs and make sure the TV is off. I have never even seen a snippet of that show. Not even by accident, which puts it further down my "to watch" list than Katie Couric and Survivor.

Baxtrice came in a close second with: Paris Hilton's acting career. That would have won, except I heard PH had one film that was interesting, although I never got to actually see it – it DID garner some interest.

So, I've decided to award the grand prize to both. Print this post and take it, along with a valid credit card with plenty of headroom on it, and book a flight to anywhere you can afford lodging.

Let's have a nice round of apple sauce for our winners.

For all our other contestants we have a copy of the home game. Also, a printout of this post and a five dollar bill will get you a Venté Cafe Americano and some shiny religious tokens at the Starbucks you just walked past.

My copy of BusinessWeak arrived in the mail today. Yup. I'm a subscriber. Anyway, Stephen Wildstrom spends several pages and much verbiage explaining how Microsoft should improve Windows in the next version.

One feature at a time, Mr. Wildstrom explains that OS X does something that he sure wishes Windows would do. Then at the end he says he's willing to wait for Windows to become OS X. I hope Microsoft was listening, because I don't own any Microsoft stock.

OS X is just about 10 years old. His Steveness brought the foundation for it with him from NeXT. We're not using a brandy-spanking new idea over here on our Macs, Stephen. We're using Unix with probably the most well-matured OS and UI in the history of personal computers.

If Microsoft ditches the underpinnings of Windows, ditches support for twenty-five years of legacy DOS programs, starts from scratch – they'll lose the only selling point they still have: backward software compatibility. All that freaking software won't run anymore. And if they're going to reinvent the OS from scratch, they don't have any choice but to faze all that crap out.

In ten years or so – the time it will take for Windows OS X clone to become a mature system – Windows will be as well remembered as CP/M.

On the other hand, if Microsoft DOESN'T reinvent Windows from scratch, it will become less and less relevant because Apple is still making improvements in OS X. Windows XP is still the operating system of choice. Vista, by all accounts, blows. The first service pack, designed to make it blow less, blows up applications. The most popular operating system on the planet is OLD. OS X is NEW. So, if Microsoft doesn't do something NEW pretty soon, their OS market will vanish entirely and quickly.

What really worried me was the statement at the end of Mr. Wildstrom's article that says he's willing to wait a few years for Microsoft to release an operating system that doesn't suck. Why? OS X is available right now. It does everything he said he wants Windows to do. In fact, every feature he asked for in Windows was compared against an already functional feature in Leopard.

Stephen Wildstrom wants Windows to be OS X. He's willing to wait beyond 2010 for that.

Picture this scene:

Waiter: What can I get you sir.

SW: I'd like a cheeseburger, fries, and a beer, but I'd like it to taste like a reuben, potato salad and a glass of merlot.

Waiter: I can get you a reuben, potato salad and a glass of merlot. Same price.

SW: Nope. I'm willing to wait, years if necessary, until the cheeseburger, fries, and beer taste like a reuben, potato salad, and merlot.

Waiter: You're a technology pundit, aren't you. *SECURITY!*

Reader Paul gives us the following link with an update on the Zune.

Rats. I'm out of coffee.