Newsletter #482 Preview: Is Microsoft the Catch Up King?

February 22nd, 2009

Let’s take a fascinating journey through time, before many of you readers were using Macs or any personal computer for that matter. Back in the 1980s, when most user interfaces were text-based, Apple burst on the scene with the Macintosh.

Even then, though, they only had a minority share of the marketplace (although larger than it is now), and Microsoft soon decided to build a competitive operating system known as Windows. At first, Windows was just a graphical shell atop DOS, but the intent was similar, and that was to bring personal computing to the masses. And, of course. make lots and lots of money.

Even before then, Microsoft’s approach to the tech business was well-established. Over the years, they have asked government regulators for the right to innovate. But, historically, they have merely attempted to play catch up with existing technology and exploit it to beat out the competition by any means possible. Very seldom — if ever — do they actually advance the state of the art, except when it comes to generating record profits from their products.

That is, except for most anything that strays beyond their original business model, which encompassed software and not hardware.

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

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