<div><span class="gmail_quote">On 4/2/07, <b class="gmail_sendername">Miller Ross</b> <<a href="mailto:email@example.com">firstname.lastname@example.org</a>> wrote:</span>
<blockquote class="gmail_quote" style="PADDING-LEFT: 1ex; MARGIN: 0px 0px 0px 0.8ex; BORDER-LEFT: #ccc 1px solid"><br>That said, we as an industry do owe Microsoft one significant debt.<br>The standardization of Microcomputer hardware. Up until DOS the
<br>world was so fragmented ...</blockquote>
<div>We owe that debt to IBM, which decided on Open Architecture for their PC. (And making up, some, for the EBCDIC fiasco). The big winner in the deal was Microsoft, who got to keep rights to the OS they brought in; which would be like McDonald's outsourcing the french-fries and cokes (no matter how efficiently you make a hamburger, it can't have the huge profit margin of the 99-cent items).
<div>The payoff for IBM came later, difusely, and gradually; e.g., putting a zillion instances of linux on a 390 with VMWare, which would never have been possible without open architecture (and open softare).</div>
<div>One might wonder what would have happened if instead IBM had called Fred Brooks, the curmudgeonly manger of OS360 who went to UNC: "Hey Fred, It's Big Blue here. Here's an assembler from Intel for their 8088 chip and a truckload of prototype microcomputers. Could you get a couple grad students together and write us an OS, by September? here's a check for a million dollars". Of course we'd be nowhere, because IBM would have fallen down marketing their OS as they did marketing their PC, they just weren't ready for dealing with the mass consumer market.
<div>MS contributed marketing. That's it. That's enough.</div>