Archive for July 2000

2000/07/22 22 Jul

It's not Microsoft .NET per se that gets me all riled up, it's that everyone has been duped into thinking that this is some kind of revolutionary new thing when it's really one level worse than vaporware: even the vapor isn't there. Read all about it: Microsoft Goes Bonkers.

I've been on vacation, so I haven't been writing as often as usual. If you're tired of checking for updates, why not sign up for an email notification when I publish a new article?

Main Beach in East Hampton

2000/07/24 24 Jul

A lot of people are talking these days about international software development: typically, that means that a US company builds a development center in India, where salaries are low and skills are high, to do programming.

I've heard a lot of rumours, and I've worked on one such team myself, but I've never seen a more general analysis of whether it can be made to work.

Have you worked on such a project, either from the US or from India? If so, I'd love to hear some details on whether it's working or not. Is it saving money? How much? What are the problems? What works well? Be brutally honest. This site is not known for pulling punches.

I'll write up an article about it in a couple of weeks.

2000/07/25 25 Jul

An Anonymous Response from inside Microsoft on my article criticizing Microsoft .NET (Microsoft Goes Bonkers).

It's not that Microsoft doesn't have any new products that they're calling .NET; it's that the concept .NET itself is just marketing blather designed to make it look like there's a grand vision at Microsoft, when all that you have is a handful of upgraded products. It's exactly like the last stupid substance-free campaign, when Microsoft was selling Windows DNA, as if that were a product or feature.

Remember that famous Dilbert cartoon, where a marketing guy is going crazy asking for features? "It has to have a 35 inch screen and fit in your pocket. It has to have a telepathic user interface and cure cancer." The trouble is, at Microsoft, these marketing guys are allowed to write white papers and pretend that the engineers are really working on that telepathic user interface they asked for.

I've redesigned a little bit. Let me know if you have problems.

2000/07/26 26 Jul

Am I the only one who is terrified about Microsoft Passport? It seems to me like a fairly blatant attempt to build the world's largest, richest consumer database, and then make fabulous profits mining it. It's a terrifying threat to everyone's personal privacy and it will make today's 'cookies' seem positively tame by comparison. The scariest thing is that Microsoft is advertising Passport as if it were a benefit to consumers, and people seem to be falling for it! By the time you've read this article, I can guarantee that I'll scare you into turning off your Hotmail account and staying away from MSN web sites.

Read all about it: Does Issuing Passports Make Microsoft a Country?

Where do morons like this get $10,000?

I promise I am not making this up. I was watching the TV news, and they were interviewing a passenger getting off the Concorde, and he actually said these words: "I'm not a statistician, but I do know that the probability of the Concorde crashing twice is infinitesimal."

Um, excuse me, even if you don't know basic probability, do you really think that the Concorde you're flying on knows about the other Concorde that crashed?

2000/07/28 28 Jul

I received some responses on my Passport article.

It's sort of interesting that the only person who defended Passport was a 10-year Microsoft employee -- a person who I know, trust, like, and respect, but who, I'm afraid to say, has been living in Redmond too long to see things the way the rest of the world sees them.

2000/07/31 31 Jul

I've been playing with WAP, the new web-like service for cellphones. Conclusion: I'm underwhelmed.

The Wireless Web: Spacesuits Needed

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