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MS and OSS... MS *could* be HUGE!

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  • User profile image
    billy

    Why doesn't MS go OSS? Open source does not mean free. Profit could still be made. Business could go on *in a new respectable fashion* and shareholders could be happy. MS could be a *very* significant contributor, and consumers would benefit. We as developers (outside of MS) would benefit. I submit that there would be no more a significant contributor (as a business entity) to the open source community than MS. So why don't they? What do you think?

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    Manip

    First, because Microsoft's software is evolved and some not written very well it has security problems.. so releasing it open-source would cause them problems. Although most open source software starts out with security problems that same software also starts out with a user-base of 0 and the bugs are fixed as the base grows... when you have a user-base of millions your going to have problems.

    Secondly, it is not in Microsoft's best interest. MOST of their customers don't care about seeing the source for Windows or any other software. The very few that do care about seeing it don't care about modifying it.

    Lastly there is no point being open source if you can't share your changes with the community. That is the concept of open source, you make changes and then share them with others.. if it was not free-redistribution of source, then it might have well be closed.

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    planetp

    billy wrote:
    Why doesn't MS go OSS? Open source does not mean free. Profit could still be made. Business could go on *in a new respectable fashion* and shareholders could be happy. MS could be a *very* significant contributor, and consumers would benefit. We as developers (outside of MS) would benefit. I submit that there would be no more a significant contributor (as a business entity) to the open source community than MS. So why don't they? What do you think?


    I think it's a great idea.  MS already has a huge head-start in understanding the code, and  they could leverage themselves with application development.  Since Windows is already on 95% of existing pc's, they could retain their strength by offering services, upgrades and programs that would be way ahead of the competition.

    Of course making it open source also means that Windows would begin to evolve beyond Redmonds control.  I think that's a good thing.  Besides, I hate to burst anyones bubble at MS, but open source will win - its inevitable.  Sorry.

    The longer MS waits to go open-source, the worse the inevitable "adjustment" is going to be.  It's hard to say what this adjustment will look like, but it will be painful for MS no matter what at this point, but in the long run, it will be a good thing, and I think MS with all of its intellectual capital is in a good position to make a lot of money in this new open-source world if it shifts its resources to the right places. 

    Whats the right places?  I have no idea.

    P.S. The trusted computing platform is doomed to fail in the market place.  You won't find a single customer in the world who actually wants DRM or trusted software lockdown.  So the only way it can be forced into the marketplace is by MS's incumbency and/or legal strong-arming.  And if it comes to that, people will be flocking to Linux in droves.

    It's a bad move on MS part, and bowing to the pressure of a small economic cartel (hollywood) against the wishes of a much bigger market opposed to it, is just plain stupid economics.  Sorry again.

  • User profile image
    billy

    Well, I'm not saying retroactively, just going forward, and selectively in a ramp up fashion. I wouldn't expect Microsoft to release everything either, I'm just saying participate *whole heartedly*. Also, to your last point, that is what I am saying. Microsoft has the ability to dominate on the basis of their ability to compete. If core pieces were open, with closed enhancements, then business entities can still stay business entities, and casual users can enjoy similar functionality to the high end software used by the paying users. Let's take Outlok Express vs. Outlook. Outlook express could be open without jeopardizing Outlook. Many of the enhancements to Outlook express (that make up Outlook) are not needed by the everyday home user. Yet, Microsoft, would benefit by getting feedback/fixes/upgrades on the core of the application, yet could still provide additional value to the higher end users. Now, if the enhancements that make up Outlook are so few that every developing entity could produce a comparable version based upon the core, then perhaps this is not an application that should be included in an organizations revenue plan.

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    Manip

    True. But we both know if MS did release Outlook Express as open-source someone would release a 'super Outlook' version or something and de-value Outlook. Outlook express is limited in order to encourage you to buy the full version.. so letting people update what is essentially a demo to the full version means less $$ for MS.

    Your ideas are not very well thought though. Open Source HAS to be non-profit or you have a very hard time justifying it. Not to mention MS has gone after Open Source, calling it insecure and basically cornered its self if it ever did want to go OSS.

  • User profile image
    miseldine

    billy wrote:
    Yet, Microsoft, would benefit by getting feedback/fixes/upgrades on the core of the application, yet could still provide additional value to the higher end users.


    It does seem to make sense for free products MS releases...Microsoft could benefit from the large geek community, yet still control release for "normal" people (I could say plebs, but that would be harsh wouldn't it? Smiley).

    I'm thinking what IE could be if we had hobby coders adding new features (say tabs and the like), whilst the big M could then periodically look at the improvements, check them out thoroughly using their resources, and push a new version using Windows Update to everyone. I wouldn't need to use Firefox...

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    Beredon

    Opening up Paint would do wonders. Smiley I think it definitely could be beneficial for Microsoft, and programmers in general. I'd prefer a more powerful Notepad or Calculator without the hassle of installing a completely separate piece of software, but I can't see Microsoft doing this. Not soon, anyway. I sincereley doubt Windows, SQL Server, Exchange or any other large and competitive product would ever be opened up for the public to peruse. For smaller products, or parts of products, this could do wonders. Just take a look at some of the Open Source code out there and you can see the talent and ingenuity they can offer. It could be a huge benefit for Microsoft to allow these people to improve on their code. Of course, most of them aren't really friends of Microsoft. Smiley

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    Manip

    Most people don't understand the point of Paint or notepad. I think programmers have some kind of hole in the brain because we think everything is inadequate and needs an update.

    With some open source distro's right now you get one default painting application called GIMP. GIMP is a great application it can compete with Paint Shop pro and such.. but I think it is a mistake to give it out as a base Paint application. When I came to paint/draw something I had no idea how to use it, and frankly it was serious over-kill for what I needed. It supports multiple layers and all sorts of advanced tools. Microsoft are no fools. They know that keeping Paint simple is a winner, and I agree. If paint was more complicated people couldn't use it. And also leaving paint the same for the last few years has given people a rock that they can count on.. lets say you go into a different college to do some work.. you've never used there system before and have no idea what's installed, you have a dead-line and need a diagram; if the system has any version of windows on it you already know how to use the default paint application. Even if you've never used it before, simple tools and a intuitive interface shouldn't slow you down too much. With  a easy to understand tools menu and paint colours boxes it is nice and simple.

    Notepad is a friendly programming tool. If you add any more features such as syntax highlighting you actually limit the tool. I mean what if I want to view raw binary data; the syntax highlighting will slow me down. So you need to be very careful and get a perfect balance between being a low-level string manipulation tool and being useable. I think MS met the balance perfectly with notepad; it is usable for coding but also for other low level jobs.

    WordPad is just free word.. good for typing.. nothing too good to say about it. But it is a rock that you know is there on any system you go to use. My only real problem with WordPad is that when you drag and drop something into it, some genius decided to make it add the file to the application.

  • User profile image
    Beredon

    But a choice would be nice, don't you think? A Sourceforge-type resource on Microsoft.com where people have the option to upgrade/change apps to different forks. Sure, it'd be a nightmare to manage, but I'm just throwing around some ideas.

  • User profile image
    Shining Arcanine

    billy wrote:
    Why doesn't MS go OSS? Open source does not mean free. Profit could still be made. Business could go on *in a new respectable fashion* and shareholders could be happy. MS could be a *very* significant contributor, and consumers would benefit. We as developers (outside of MS) would benefit. I submit that there would be no more a significant contributor (as a business entity) to the open source community than MS. So why don't they? What do you think?


    If Microsoft went Open Source, I would switch to Unix or some other operating system that is closed source. I don't want people with malicous intentions looking for holes in the Operating System that I am using. Closed Source is one of the reasons I'm a Microsoft customer.

    As for Paint, there is a good amount of room for improvement, I prefer to see capabilities in Windows rather than 3rd party applications.

    Sharing the source of applications nonvital to security such as websites that don't store data that the public shouldn't see wouldn't be a bad idea through.

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    Jeremy W

    As I see it, 2 of this weeks developments are Microsoft testing the waters a little. WiX and Channel9. Both are "Open" in different ways. Sure, not the way 'everyone' (tongue in cheek) wants, but certainly testing the community response.

    To be honest, besides /. the community response has (to me) been surprisingly good. Heck, even at Slashdot it hasn't been all that bad. Some slandering, some backbiting, whatever. You get that on all threads.

    I really don't think there is any benefit to OS'ing any flagship products. Trying it out with some lesser known, 'geeky' (but useful) products is a very good idea.

    ps: I like Paint and Notepad just as they are, thanks.

  • User profile image
    Shining Arcanine

    Jeremy W. wrote:
    As I see it, 2 of this weeks developments are Microsoft testing the waters a little. WiX and Channel9. Both are "Open" in different ways. Sure, not the way 'everyone' (tongue in cheek) wants, but certainly testing the community response.

    To be honest, besides /. the community response has (to me) been surprisingly good. Heck, even at Slashdot it hasn't been all that bad. Some slandering, some backbiting, whatever. You get that on all threads.

    I really don't think there is any benefit to OS'ing any flagship products. Trying it out with some lesser known, 'geeky' (but useful) products is a very good idea.

    ps: I like Paint and Notepad just as they are, thanks.


    The source to WiX is not a potential security issue and makes utilizing an installer for the Windows platform easier. Sharing the source to it was a good idea.   

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    sseveran

    Its not like Microsoft on their own thought, 'Oh gee, wouldn't it be great if we made this thing called DRM'. No, they are responding to a competitive pressure. In order to sell music online companies want DRM. In the future, for worse in my opinion, all music and video will probably have DRM and it will be illegal to have any device which circumvents it. So Microsoft has set themselves up nicely to compete when that time comes.

    Steve

  • User profile image
    billy

    Shining Arcanine wrote:
    billy said:
    Why doesn't MS go OSS? Open source does not mean free. Profit could still be made. Business could go on *in a new respectable fashion* and shareholders could be happy. MS could be a *very* significant contributor, and consumers would benefit. We as developers (outside of MS) would benefit. I submit that there would be no more a significant contributor (as a business entity) to the open source community than MS. So why don't they? What do you think?


    If Microsoft went Open Source, I would switch to Unix or some other operating system that is closed source. I don't want people with malicous intentions looking for holes in the Operating System that I am using. Closed Source is one of the reasons I'm a Microsoft customer.

    As for Paint, there is a good amount of room for improvement, I prefer to see capabilities in Windows rather than 3rd party applications.

    Sharing the source of applications nonvital to security such as websites that don't store data that the public shouldn't see wouldn't be a bad idea through.


    R-i-g-h-t... I would hate to suddenly see virii and other malicious code that targetted Windows and IE too!
    But let's say that was the case, wouldn't you be able to apply the unofficial patch in lieu of the the official patch from MS? That is, if the issue was in a released portion of the application / system.

  • User profile image
    object88

    planetp wrote:

    P.S. The trusted computing platform is doomed to fail in the market place.  You won't find a single customer in the world who actually wants DRM or trusted software lockdown.  So the only way it can be forced into the marketplace is by MS's incumbency and/or legal strong-arming.  And if it comes to that, people will be flocking to Linux in droves.

    It's a bad move on MS part, and bowing to the pressure of a small economic cartel (hollywood) against the wishes of a much bigger market opposed to it, is just plain stupid economics.  Sorry again.


    I know this isn't on topic, but I think you're rather off base here.  Now, I'm pretty much anti-DRM (plug: check out http://audiolunchbox.com/ for some DRM-free pay-to-download quality music, no affiliation), but let's look at a few points.

    First, Hollywood is a farking HUGE business.  The big 5 (is it still 5?) have a lot of influence.  The DMCA didn't come about on its own.

    Second, the average customer doesn't care about DRM.  Look at the millions of sales of DRM-protected music from iTunes and other online stores.  They care about getting the stuff they want, easily and quickly.

    Now, trusted computing.  I don't know a lot about it, but Microsoft has marketing skills.  If they say trusted computing is the way to go, and they have the backing of IBM, Intel, and AMD, and bundle it up with something juicy (say, Longhorn, which it seems like a lot of people here really want), it will be popular.

    Of course, the counterpoint to this argument is the reaction to the Intel Pentium 3 chip ID thing.

    The only way people will flock to Linux in droves is if they give it away.  Oops, they do that already.  Um, if they offer free support!  No, wait, that's not working either.  How about if they offer to allow users to customer everything and give away the source code to prove it's safe?  No?  Darn.  Well, hell, I just don't see people flocking to Linux in droves any time in the near future.  I would love to see Linux become more popular, as I think it's way better than MS in many aspects, but it's not going to happen just because of DRM / trusted computer movements.

    [Aside: the tone of this post should be taken as lighthearted-- I'm not attacking you.  Just offering a different POV.]

  • User profile image
    magicalclick

    I am not so sure. Some one can potentially leave a back door for hackers. And it is hard to evaluate every single line of code to make sure that doesn't happen.

    If you want open source stuff, it should starts with applications that has been the same since WIN95. Like calculator and Paint. There is an Paint .Net open source project though. It is associated with MS too.

    MS does support open source community, as codeplex is the example. But to ask MS to open up their own stuff to the public? It is not a good idea.

    Leaving WM on 5/2018 if no apps, no dedicated billboards where I drive, no Store name.
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    Cannot​Resolve​Symbol

    This thread is three years old...

  • User profile image
    Escamillo

    magicalclick wrote:
    I am not so sure. Some one can potentially leave a back door for hackers. And it is hard to evaluate every single line of code to make sure that doesn't happen.

    If you want open source stuff, it should starts with applications that has been the same since WIN95. Like calculator and Paint. There is an Paint .Net open source project though. It is associated with MS too.

    MS does support open source community, as codeplex is the example. But to ask MS to open up their own stuff to the public? It is not a good idea.


    Wow, I actually started reading this thread, until some of the comments gave me the feeling that the posts were out-of-date, then I actually looked at the dates and saw that this thread is over 3 years old.  Why you resurrected this thread is beyond me.

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