Subject: Re: Is the party over?
From: Ian Lance Taylor <ian@airs.com>
Date: 15 Jun 2001 10:25:16 -0700

Tom Hull <thull@kscable.com> writes:

> > (3) Microsoft has some very smart people running it, and when charged
> >     with finding a business strategy to counter Linux, they've come up
> >     with a smart plan.  They also have a marketing team that is very
> >     good projecting an aura of invincibility, and they weathered the
> >     dot-com bubble while preserving a large war chest.  However, that
> >     does not make Microsoft invincible.
> 
> The more I learn about .NET (which isn't a lot), the more it seems to
> me to be a response to the antitrust case. If/when Microsoft loses their
> appeals, .NET would give the non-OS split of the company something very
> OS-like to leverage, in the same sense that they leverage their desktop
> OS monopoly. And if they win, of course, they not only implement their
> cherished vig, they get to thumb their noses at the whole affair.

I think the business case for .NET is that it provides a way for
Microsoft to get revenues that don't depend on the Windows platform.
Selling Windows isn't going to work in the long term--the price will
have to drop under pressure from free software and the DOJ.  But
Microsoft is addicted to the revenue.  If .NET works, it can give
Microsoft an alternative revenue stream, one which is subscription
based.

It'll be interesting to see whether it will be possible to implement a
free authentication server for .NET.  It'll also be interesting to see
whether, if a free one exists, anybody uses it.

Ian