I came across this post in the Aero Glass for Win8 RC4 thread:
Do you think the people at Microsoft have some master plan to control how you use your OS or something? The "restrictive" stuff that they put in Windows is for the concern of security and nothing more. I hope you're not one of those conspiracy theorists who believe that everytime a windows update breaks some hack it's because Microsoft purposely put in some way to prevent it.
Read the whole post for the context. Any thoughts on this? Personally, I don't think there is a conscious "master" plan to control how people use their computers (although there may in fact be, for all we know), but I do believe that that is a predictable consequence of what they're doing over at Microsoft with Metro, the Windows Store, secure boot: in the end, the user will lead a computer life whose activities will be strictly constrained by what the powers-that-be in Redmond (and, likely, functionaries in the various capital cities of the world) shall deem it fit to allow; and the PC will become not much better than an interactive TV set. This is motivated IMHO (at least on Microsoft's part) not by control freakiness, but by Apple envy; and the process of OS cretinization will be helped along by folks who can't (or won't) see past the end of their noses and will cheer it all on, as long as they feel "safe" or get cool new toys to play with.
Concerning the alleged security rationale, I'm skeptical, and in any event giving up freedom for security is not a bargain I am eager to make.
~sigh~ Lot of shallow thinking going around. Shallow, because they throw this stuff out without thinking it through. Each point there is senseless IMHO ...Do you think the people at Microsoft have some master plan to control how you use your OS or something?
Well aside from the industrial strength use of a strawman there, they do control much of how we use it by virtue of what actual OS is released and what is killed. And it would be much worse today if it hadn't been for periodic pushback events in the past, pushback against Draconian DRM ever-present in the OS stationed on-guard watching out for Big Hollywood interests. They do have a master plan though, and I'll get back to this later.The "restrictive" stuff that they put in Windows is for the concern of security and nothing more.
Some kind of Irony coming from a commenter in a thread about restoring Aero, which was yanked for reasons completely unrelated to security. As were gadgets, contrary to their lies. As was everything they killed along the way. If security were actually a concern MSIE would never have been allowed to operate. Active-X controls would never even have had an option to silently download and run. The firewall in XP would have been two-sided and the later firewalls would have been backported. MSIE would have been sandboxed years ago and itself would be backported to every version of Windows. If they cared about security there is no doubt that these all of things and more would be front and center, not mere afterthoughts occurring years later. I think he is confusing "paying lip service" with genuine concern about security. It's obvious many people simply do not realize that almost everything done by Microsoft is not for users, but for Microsoft itself.I hope you're not one of those conspiracy theorists who believe that everytime a windows update breaks some hack it's because Microsoft purposely put in some way to prevent it.
One of the most obvious coping mechanisms of those in denial is the use of "conspiracy theory theory" ( CTT ), which means to invent a ridiculous strawman, setting the bar to an unattainable level of proof required to defeat it. So in these cases the CTT calls for the dark smoky back room filled with shady characters seen in the X-Files, who are plotting to make Windows users lives miserable. Unless the minutes of these meetings surface and get exposed on NeoWin or The Verge the person in denial gets to sleep comfortably knowing all is right with the world.
Back to the "master plan" ... one easy way to test a hypothesis ( e.g., "Do you think the people at Microsoft have some master plan
" ) is to invert it and see what you get. So, is it possible that Microsoft has NO master plan? Are they really operating day to day willy-nilly, only reacting to events instead of following a carefully planned agenda? This is a top Wall Street property, AAA rated, to think they are operating their flagship on a day to day basis is absurd. They have stated many times that they are in the midst of converting to a SaaS subscription paradigm, better known as a parasitic leech and you better believe this transition is loaded with carefully laid plans, among which Windows figures prominently. So they have plans for their OS, he can call it a "master plan" if he likes, or not. Doesn't matter. The plan has been deduced and fleshed out all across the blogosphere, especially here in this thread.
That plan starts with ... Building a new platform from the ground up, a clean slate that they can control both the hardware and software. This is the Apple-envy portion. WinRT is the goal here, a sad, trivial, amateurish platform that truly is Playskool level but satisfies the sheeples' urge for mass quantities and rapid deployment of Stores full of childish fart apps. And that's fine if they want it. ... but ... What should they do with the x86 universe, the open architecture that brought them to the pinnacle of the technological business world in the first place? That's where it gets icky. And it is where they cross the line of becoming an outright evil corporation by revisiting antitrust and anticompetitive behavior once again. And, yes, it also includes a "master plan".
What they are doing is casting a vast wide net to catch as many of the x86 fish as possible before they get away. By inserting all the locked-down walled-garden concepts of WinRT plan into Windows 8
, like the Store, they are steering millions of customers on the neutral x86 playing field into a training program for future Apple'tards, err I mean MicroTards. This is the nefarious portion of the plan. And if there was any competition that had survived their previous anticompetitive forays, well, they would be up in arms right now. I firmly believe this plan was hatched around the WinXP timeframe, after Gates stepped down, after the Judgment that was watered down from the original monopoly busting verdict, when they were on a kind of probation which lasted until 2007. They likely planned the move to copy Apple during the Judgment and began executing it since Vista. In short, it means they are getting out of the neutral OS producing business
. And with it goes any related developer software, Technet, and all complexity. It is easy to be Apple. It is NOT easy to be neutral. So Apple it is.
The consequence of this is that user freedoms will be dramatically impacted without a neutral OS, or even one that only pretends to be neutral. The computing world will become Balkanized once again, as it was from around 1988 to about 1993 when Windows finally became dominant and developers flocked to a monopolized platform but was at least a stationary target. Expect aisles full of Toys'r'us-like stores selling all kinds of children computers appealing to the derp, with nothing matching the extraordinary trajectory we were on and should still following at this point in time. Microsoft's target is even lower than Apple's though, they are scraping the bottom of the barrel for the dumbest of the dumb, and judging by NeoWin, they are being fairly successful. If you can imagine the big record companies that sell a wide range of artists music, Microsoft would be the one only signing Michael Jackson, Madonna and Justin Bieber. The talent ( I'm talking music here, not dancing or showmanship ) is an inch deep but sells millions. Windows 8
is Justin Bieber's idea.
Most of the 'Tards find no fault in such a plan. The say it's good business. Sure. It would also be easier to only sell Chevettes rather then Corvettes, it would be much easier to turn a 5-star restaurant into McDonald's, for all whiskey to be generic and no beer to be German, for all furniture to be plywood, and all clothes to be made in China. Catering to the lowest common denominator is business 101 apparently, it is truly sheeplenomics. But catering only
to the lowest common denominator means no top-shelf anything. This is called the "race to the bottom" and the 'Tards that embrace it and rationalize it must be called out and ridiculed. The question is how much of it will they accept before they wake up and go "waitaminit, I didn't want that to happen
". My guess is they will accept a lot. I suggest people start saving all their personal computers, all the parts, all the software, maybe reup to Technet one last time, in short grab everything for a rainy day because thanks to the sheeple, the forecast for the future is very cloudy.
We're only fighting a small piece of the battle here in Windows land. Truly it crosses over into all these other areas of life. We all see it everywhere, all around us, every day. Strip malls full of ever-changing little stores, closed-up big box outlets, a general lack of quality. And it permeates into even service industries that are now staffed with narcissistic spoiled brats yacking on their cellphones and when they can pry themselves away from the social world, they do a bad job anyway. So Microsoft is not unique in this regard, but they are guilty of lack of integrity and quality. In a free market in a free society there is no law that requires a company to make a great product ( rather than a sufficient product ), there is no law that requires anyone to go above and beyond the call of duty. That comes from personal integrity and from high principles and values and from a personal aversion to failure and need for perfectionism. But there are elements in a free market and free society that promote this. Those elements come from high customer expectations, and feedback. They do NOT come from enablers and fanboys and MetroTards. Living through the x86 software era you couldn't help but notice some programs were pure crap, but others were written by devs that really really cared about their code and documentation. So we know we have all kinds of people in the world because we have seen it everyday. The market elements of customer feedback called out the crap and praised the good stuff to the ends of the Internet. It is the only thing that can really save Microsoft, and by extension the Personal Computer itself.
The ironic thing is that the original Judgment against Microsoft, and the order to break it up into two parts would have been the absolute BEST thing for us, and Microsoft itself.
Getting the neutral Windows OS away from the rest of the clowns up there into a separate place where they would answer to everyone would have been ideal. Most importantly it would have removed the irresistible temptation for Microsoft to use the OS as leverage to steer the Sheeple into the Microverse as they are plotting as we speak. Windows would be far more cross platform friendly and so many developer avenues would not have turned into dead-ends. Unfortunately the government spent so much time hammering them over Netscape ( thanks a lot Barksdale ) that they actually drummed up sympathy for Microsoft. I know this because I was one of them ( boy was I wrong! ). It seemed really dumb to complain about a free browser in the OS because other browsers worked fine. And the downside of making them remove it meant opening the door to every other non-essential part of the OS ( Calc, Notepad, etc ) to also be challenged by every Tom, Dick and Harry on the planet. Meanwhile the backroom OEM deals got stepped over chasing Netscape down a rabbit hole. ~sigh~ Anyway, I'll close with what was said at the time
The trial began on May 18, 1998, with the U.S. Department of Justice and the Attorneys General of twenty U.S. states suing Microsoft for illegally thwarting competition in order to protect and extend its software monopoly. In October 1998, the U.S. Department of Justice also sued Microsoft for violating a 1994 consent decree by forcing computer makers to include its Internet browser as a part of the installation of Windows software.
Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates was called "evasive and nonresponsive" by a source present at a session in which Gates was questioned on his deposition. He argued over the definitions of words such as "compete", "concerned", "ask", and "we". Businessweek reported that "early rounds of his deposition show him offering obfuscatory answers and saying 'I don't recall' so many times that even the presiding judge had to chuckle. Worse, many of the technology chief's denials and pleas of ignorance have been directly refuted by prosecutors with snippets of email Gates both sent and received." Intel Vice-President Steven McGeady, called as a witness, quoted Paul Maritz, a senior Microsoft vice president, as having stated an intention to "extinguish" and "smother" rival Netscape Communications Corporation and to "cut off Netscape's air supply" by giving away a clone of Netscape's flagship product for free.
A number of videotapes were submitted as evidence by Microsoft during the trial, including one that demonstrated that removing Internet Explorer from Microsoft Windows caused slowdowns and malfunctions in Windows. In the videotaped demonstration of what Microsoft vice president James Allchin's stated to be a seamless segment filmed on one PC, the plaintiff noticed that some icons mysteriously disappear and reappear on the PC's desktop, suggesting that the effects might have been falsified. Allchin admitted that the blame for the tape problems lay with some of his staff. "They ended up filming it—grabbing the wrong screen shot", he said of the incident. Later, Allchin re-ran the demonstration and provided a new videotape, but in so doing Microsoft dropped the claim that Windows is slowed down when Internet Explorer is removed. Mark Murray, a Microsoft spokesperson, berated the government attorneys for "nitpicking on issues like video production". Microsoft submitted a second inaccurate videotape into evidence later the same month as the first. The issue in question was how easy or hard it was for America Online users to download and install Netscape Navigator onto a Windows PC. Microsoft's videotape showed the process as being quick and easy, resulting in the Netscape icon appearing on the user's desktop. The government produced its own videotape of the same process, revealing that Microsoft's videotape had conveniently removed a long and complex part of the procedure and that the Netscape icon was not placed on the desktop, requiring a user to search for it. Brad Chase, a Microsoft vice president, verified the government's tape and conceded that Microsoft's own tape was falsified.
When the judge ordered Microsoft to offer a version of Windows which did not include Internet Explorer, Microsoft responded that the company would offer manufacturers a choice: one version of Windows that was obsolete, or another that did not work properly. The judge asked, "It seemed absolutely clear to you that I entered an order that required that you distribute a product that would not work?" David D. Cole, a Microsoft vice president, replied, "In plain English, yes. We followed that order. It wasn't my place to consider the consequences of that." Microsoft vigorously defended itself in the public arena, arguing that its attempts to "innovate" were under attack by rival companies jealous at its success, and that government litigation was merely their pawn (see public choice theory). A full-page ad run in the Washington Post and the New York Times on June 2, 1999, by The Independent Institute delivered "An Open Letter to President Clinton From 240 Economists On Antitrust Protectionism." It said, in part, "Consumers did not ask for these antitrust actions – rival business firms did. Consumers of high technology have enjoyed falling prices, expanding outputs, and a breathtaking array of new products and innovations. ... Increasingly, however, some firms have sought to handicap their rivals by turning to government for protection. Many of these cases are based on speculation about some vaguely specified consumer harm in some unspecified future, and many of the proposed interventions will weaken successful U.S. firms and impede their competitiveness abroad."
Judge Thomas Penfield Jackson issued his findings of fact on November 5, 1999, which stated that Microsoft's dominance of the x86-based personal computer operating systems market constituted a monopoly, and that Microsoft had taken actions to crush threats to that monopoly, including Apple, Java, Netscape, Lotus Notes, RealNetworks, Linux, and others. Judgment was split in two parts. On April 3, 2000, he issued his conclusions of law, according to which Microsoft had committed monopolization, attempted monopolization, and tying in violation of Sections 1 and 2 of the Sherman Antitrust Act. Microsoft immediately appealed the decision.
On June 7, 2000, the court ordered a breakup of Microsoft as its "remedy". According to that judgment, Microsoft would have to be broken into two separate units, one to produce the operating system, and one to produce other software components.
You better believe that this is what set current events into motion. They simply bided their time until the remedy ran out and now are making their move. Things are going to become radically different at the end of this story. But there is nothing stopping everyone in the USA from contacting their two Senators and one Representatives as well as their State Attorney General and the FTC and the DoJ directly and remind them of this convicted monopolist that skated away on a technicality and now is right back doing it again. Other countries may have their own bureaucracy that can be contacted personally. Doing nothing is the only way to guarantee that they will get away with it.