Newsletter #380 Preview: Is Bill Gates Sane and Putting Us On or What?

March 12th, 2007

When Microsoft was under the gun defending itself against antitrust charges from the U.S. Department of Justice, they said they only wanted to be free to “innovate.”

Now it’s fair to say that there is a lot of disagreement over just how much Microsoft innovates, and how much it cribs from others, such as Apple. In fact, the legendary $150 million dollar investment Microsoft made in Apple in the 1990s — plus unannounced payments that may have amounted to hundreds of millions of dollars, if not more — were designed to settle the ongoing dispute over patent rights and such.

So even if Microsoft stole a Mac user interface element wholesale, there would be no legal repercussions, at least from Apple. Maybe that’s why Outlook Express is now Windows Mail and resembles Apple Mail.

Which brings us back to Bill Gates, who is quoted as saying that, like Windows, the Mac is regularly infected by malware. Maybe he’s been reading Consumer Reports magazine, which once came out with an extremely odd survey that indicated that some 20% of Mac users had encountered viruses on their computers.

Story continued in this week’s Tech Night Owl Newsletter.

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