Government Wants Two Microsofts

Friday April 28th, 2000

The U.S. Government has issued what it feels is the best remedy to keep Microsoft from leveraging it's monopoly any further. Microsoft part 1 would be just the operating system, and part 2 would take control of applications like IE and Office. Microsoft has until May 10 to submit their comments on this.

This bodes well for the Web developer community. Up to the present day, the IE development team has worked to support Microsoft's developer customer base, not Web developers in general or standards compliance goals. This is clear in the posts from Microsoft representatives on the WSP Standards mailing list.

With no guarantee that their browser will be included on any PC distribution, would the IE team not be forced to deal with standards compliance and interoperability? If they had to compete at the same level as their competitors, would it not bring about a change in attitude? And with no OS monopoly revenues to support browser development, I wonder if Microsoft would be forced to act as Netscape did -- turning to Open Source and the developer community for assistance.

Microsoft's IE development team has created a de facto platform built on numerous proprietary extensions and tight OS integration. With the loss of this tight integration, and with new platform competition from Mozilla's XUL, would the IE team acknowledge the necessity of cross-platform interoperability? Or would they stay a Windows-and-Mac-only development team that lacks interoperability across even those two platforms?

What do you think?

#17 Re: What's the motivation behind IE without the OS

by sicking

Tuesday May 2nd, 2000 12:29 AM

You are replying to this message

Yes there still is reasons for MS to develop an free IE even if the OS-development is in another company. If you have a product that has millions of users you have a great channel for spreading your message. Why do you think AOL bought Netscape?

Application-MS can use IE for integration with office (Save as word document) They can also integrate with their websites. Heck even just installing a default homepage for a browser used by millions of customers is proboly worth a few million $$.

I don't think we will see IE dieing in quite some time. Application-Microsoft will do just fine without OS-Microsoft, they have proven that on the Mac where thy produce much higher quality softwhere then they ever has done on the PC...