Or Else!

A great comment on the Meegos page, purportedly from admin@msn.com.

You need to pay for your meegos, msn had used very much money to make this project availible for the public! You have shown a stolen meego on you site as an example, wecan easy track you down.. pay for one now and display that one here please.. or else…

[cacophonous laughter]

To Kirk Goblin.

Oh my GOD! You’re ONTO ME! I thought I was perfectly safe posting my personal opinions on this web site which I OWN, whose name registration is under MY NAME AND BILLING ADDRESS. Why, only the most devious black hat hackers working for trillionaire Russian crime syndicates could figure out MY identity! Only they possess the mysical power of “whois.net”.

Second, you’re saying that that just because MSN paid a lot of money for this project I should _respect_ them? That’s exactly why I _don’t_ respect them! It’s L-A-M-E.

Third, I didn’t steal the Meego on my site. The Meego was part of a screenshot of the MSN Meegos site, which I was reviewing for editorial purposes. If MSN sues everyone who looks at their site and attempts to comment on it, then they’re not going to find a lot of people reviewing their site, are they? Plus, if I had a Meego _without_ blue lines, and hadn’t paid for it, _that_ would be stealing. This is the free one, ce?

Finally, (FINALLY!), “or else”. I don’t even know where to start. But I’ll start here: You’re in fucking Oslo. OSLO. If you throw a snowball at me, it will melt by the time it gets here. I strongly doubt that you actually have anything to do with MSN, but just in case you do, please get back to me with a real threat within my legal jurisdiction and then I will take you seriously.

Looking forward to it,

Yeesh! The war of words continues…

Microsoft the UNIX Vendor

Remember a while ago, when Linux started to break through into the commercial world, and many wondered how Microsoft might respond to the threat? Some suggested MS might open-source Windows. Some wondered whether Office might ever ship for Linux. But by far the most laughable suggestion was that Microsoft might release their own version of Linux.

I’ve noticed something weird about Microsoft lately. I think they’re giving up many of the proprietary parts of their operating systems and concentrating on the very thin slice of the API stack that produces the most money.

Microsoft has begun seriously pushing Windows SFU (Windows Services For Unix). This is a set of APIs that mimic the UNIX libc/POSIX standard, and in fact even allow for the execution of Linux binaries on Windows (much like the WINE project does in the other direction). SFU is a free download, and will be included by default in Longhorn Server, due some time in 2007.

What does this mean? Is this tacit acknowledgement that Microsoft has lost developers to the UNIX camp? Or are they trying to lure a new batch of developers from UNIX/Linux that might never have considered Windows?

I think it’s perhaps even broader than that; an acknowledgement that the UNIX design, by virtue of its simplicity and broad reach, is becoming (again) the defacto portable programming environment, and that Microsoft’s proprietary APIs have had their day.

At least on the server.

There is no real cross-platform GUI standard on the client, and Microsoft is using this final opportunity with Longhorn client to get real lock-in. Their attempts to do so on the server have failed, and so they have to play someone else’s game and essentially ship their own version of UNIX/Linux. The API battle on the server is definitively over – and the winner is not a single vendor, but the UNIX API set.

Another nail in the coffin of Microsoft’s proprietary system is their acknowledgement that all modern kernels essentially offer the same features and stability. They may differ in some parts of their design – micro-verses-monolithic kernel, kernel pre-emption, NX support – but essentially there are quite a few mature, portable kernels available now and the hard problems have all been solved. Think NT, Solaris, Linux, QNX and Darwin. This means MS can’t differentiate on the kernel – and in fact, the effort of maintaining the NT kernel may not be worthwhile before too long. I think we finally are at a point where we can see the day coming that Microsoft switches to an open-source kernel.

Where will it lead? I believe that Microsoft will become just another UNIX player in the Server market, providing NFS and Apache alongside the now rather crusty IIS and SMB. They will focus like a laser on retaining the client market, mimicking (as always) the Apple OS X GUI advancements and bringing them to the masses. It is the only place where they stand a chance, but how well they do depends on how quickly the Linux and UNIX client markets can coalesce their current fragmented client APIs into a broadly accepted standard. If that can happen before Longhorn hits in 2007, Microsoft’s efforts will be seriously hampered.

SCO’s Lawyers vs. SCO

Being a lawyer sounds like fun, and being a judge sounds like even more fun. Watch the judge in the SCO vs. IBM case dish out some spontaneous justice to one of SCO’s attorneys:

MR. FREI: … Right now, we have been impacted by the discovery schedule in this case. There are 40 depositions per side. We would somehow have to fit what we think might be 70 patent depositions into that 40 with the rest of the case. There were 25 interrogatories per side.

COURT: You’re describing a law firm’s billing dream, aren’t you?

MR FREI: This case has been a very intensive case.

COURT: I’m sure it has.

Thanks to groklaw for the link.

_sigh_ kickin’ it one more time, y’all

Some people never give up. They just have to have the last word.

I am one of those people.

3H Group posted on my site again last thursday – I must have missed it because I got tired of scanning my logs in the morning – and here’s the scintillating prose and searing wit they emblazoned in mighty letters of fire against my post:


That’s the first attempt at a last word that I’ve ever seen that’s actually a single word. Beautifully literal, donchathink?

For the click-minimalists that might not want to browse to my response:

What, were you _drunk_ when you posted this? Your comment was posted from inside the 3hgroup private network. Please stop spamming and abusing my site. This is turning into an embarrassment for you and your employer.

I mean, really, don’t you guys have better things to do? Like run a business? You can’t really blame me for flaming you – you definately started this. From your first post you called me an idiot, and now you’ve drawn hundreds and hundreds of hits to my site with your pointless rants and ill-conceived attempts at marketing. If this post is some attempt to bait me, it failed. Frankly, I’m bored with this, as I’m sure anyone else would be by now.

You dug your hole, now lie in it. Sheesh.


The worst part is, I’m all sorts of terrible things – a liar, lazy, overly critical, frequently just plain annoying; but they called me an idiot, which is one thing I really don’t think I am. Talk about being so far off the mark.

Lordy, the fun never stops – someone with the imaginitive name of “Meegos Rock” posted a comment on the original article saying simply:

Meegos rock!!

Well, as you can imagine it took about three minutes to trace this back to, not 3H Group, but MSN themselves:

To Meegos Rock:
Jeez, you would think that maybe, just maybe, the wonderful people of MSN and 3H Group would have BOARDED THE FUCKING CLUE-TRAIN AND REALISED I CAN SEE WHO YOU ARE WHEN YOU POST ON MY SITE. But noooo, here we go again, this time you’re posting from jetstream.xtra.co.nz, xtra being an MSN network that, wonder-of-wonders, just launched Meegos. Before all this started, I would have given such circumstantial evidence less credence, but since every positive comment about Meegos so far has provably come from a 3H Group employee, I’m no longer so trusting.

As my friend Matt said in another comment, anyone who googles you, be they potential partners, employees, or customers, is now going to see yet another pathetic attempt at marketing your virtual non-product on my site. MY SITE.

From the moment you called me a “smuck” (sic), you invited this trouble on yourself. Every time you fuck with my site, you only make it worse for yourselves. But instead of learning your lesson, you’ve created at least four identities, astroturfed my site, called me an idiot, a ’smuck’, jobless, underdressed, and other names. And you’ve bragged about your personal fortune!

Talk about needing to get a life. If I was an employee of 3H Group, I’d jump ship right about now – if they’re reduced to these sorts of actions, things must be really desperate.

I know now that I’ve bored everyone else to death with this, but I will not let their continued attempts at astroturfing on my site go unanswered. So to the two other people that ever read my site: I’m sorry.

I knew it!

I checked my web logs, and I’ve been getting a truly massive amount of hits from bots at msn.com. And you know it must be Microsoft, because they’re really bad at spidering the site, and they always pick up the boring crap without hitting any of the interesting pages.

Anyway, it turns out Microsoft is previewing a new search engine which, when I tried it, just complained about being unable to service my request. Apparently, it’s modelled after Google’s simplistic interface – following on from Microsoft’s grant tradition of copying others’ success: “all the aethestics, none of the uptime”…