Google: The New Microsoft?
I've pointed out many times -- some may say too many times -- that Google has
too much power. It knows too much about us (and this is only getting worse),
has too much control over Web advertising (which it somehow achieves without
creating any of its own content) and now it wants to completely corner the market
on Web ads with a proposed
deal with Yahoo
I felt a bit like a voice in the wilderness. Now Bill Snyder of InfoWorld
(where I worked back when it still had a magazine) has joined me in the boondocks
with a column asking whether we want a monopoly on the Web, and warning that
is becoming Microsoft's evil twin."
Am I too tough on Google, or do you also fear a Google monopoly? Comments welcome
at [email protected].
And while you're at it, what's your favorite defunct magazine? InfoWorld,
Byte, Network Computing, PC/Computing, AmigaWorld?
Send your thoughts to [email protected].
Software Has Been Berry, Berry
As Chico Escuela might say, software has been berry, berry good to Microsoft.
And despite the over-hyped Google threat, Microsoft keeps printing money faster
than the U.S. mint (though slower than a Chinese bank these days).
Case in point: the most recent fiscal year wherein Redmond brought
in over $60 billion (and by Redmond, I mean the company, not the magazine,
The only dark cloud is on the Web, where Microsoft actually lost almost half-a-billion
dollars. Microsoft, as it has shown with the Xbox and ERP applications, can
weather some rather massive losses as it waits for its strategy to succeed.
My opinion? Online services are no different.
Disagree? Tell me where I'm wrong by writing to [email protected].
A Live Mesh Sellout
Some developers interested in trying out the beta of Live Mesh are a bit disappointed.
No, not in the software -- in their ability to get it. It seems there's a waiting
list to get the test software.
I've read up on Live Mesh and still don't completely get it. Here's what I
think I know: Live Mesh isn't a product, but a set of tools that let developers
build applications. These applications are designed not just to share data across
the Internet, but keep it synchronized, as well. This is a very Lotus Notes-ian
concept, which used replication to sync end user machines with databases stored
There are lots of potential uses for Live Mesh. For starters, consumers can
share photos and music, or collaborate on blogs. My ideal use is to have a single
place for all my documents, bookmarks and messaging tools. This way, I can have
a full environment and data set no matter what machine I'm working on.
I pine for this capability every time my Dell Latitude D520 needs a new motherboard,
an all-too-frequent event. In the absence of such a system, I have to kludge
together a working system out of an old machine, contact my online backup provided
to get my files (this company isn't open at nights or weekends, when I actually
do most of my work), and install new bits of software like my IM client.
Redmond magazine columnist Mary Jo Foley examined Live Mesh and found
it much more a consumer play. Check out her analysis here.
I know you in IT are much smarter than I am, so how do you keep multiple machines
in sync? Save my sanity by e-mailing your techniques to [email protected].
Mailbag: Microsoft Cries Monopoly
More readers share their thoughts on Microsoft's ruckus-raising
over the Google-Yahoo ad deal because of the potential monopoly it would create:
I'm an avid Microsoft user and accredit the better part of my carreer
to Microsoft and its technology. Unfortunately, I cannot sympathise with it
regarding its "monopoly" cry. As much as I love its technology and
recommend it in our company, some things should also be left for others to
control and enjoy some form of profitability. I don't think I want to live
in a world where our video games (Xbox), computers (Windows OSes) and Internet
browsing (IE/ad business) are all controlled by one company. There should
be limits to this and choice for users, which creates competition and innovation
for the industry. Had it not been for this concept, we could all be driving
It's not ironic for all (haters and non) who know in the back of their
minds that MS had competition in all those areas and did/does not have a monopoly
at all (by definition and by court ruling). It's not ironic, but instead "turnaround
is fair play" or "what's good for the goose, is good for the gander."
Media hype has elevated the MS plight to a level that obfuscated the
activities of the other companies (in this and other markets) from the public.
The MS fiasco may have made us forget about other transgressions or think
other companies are very virtuous, but this hopefully will wake people up
to the fact that MS wasn't/isn't doing anything any other company throughout
history has been trying/will continue to try to do.
It really doesn't surprise me at all. You think Microsoft cannot sink
any lower and then you look down and there it is! For Microsoft to even think
of crying illegal monopoly is a joke after what it did to even get into the
position it's in in the desktop OS market and other markets. It doesn't even
make the best products because it doesn't have to. I think it needs to shut
up now (but I hope it doesn't and then gets into some real trouble).
Share your thoughts! Leave a comment below or send an e-mail to [email protected].
Doug Barney is editor in chief of Redmond magazine and the VP, editorial director of Redmond Media Group.