The Microsoft Resistance

from the viva...? dept

Salon has an article talking about forming a “resistance” to Microsoft and includes 4 easy suggestions: using other software, lobbying the government, watch, and wait. Of course, I wonder how many people really want to be part of a Microsoft Resistance? While there are many things people don’t like about various Microsoft products, I’m not sure how many people out there really “hate” Microsoft to the point of making a conscious effort to get away from them.

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Comments on “The Microsoft Resistance”

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Eric says:

Leaving Microsoft Products

Just to satisfy a question posed by the original author: Yes, there are people who are so bothered by Microsoft’s products, and business practices that they’ve left or are in the process. I left using Microsoft at home approximately 6 months ago. I’ve been running RedHat Linux 7.1 on a brand new machine ever since. My wife followed suit approximately 3 months ago. She is a professional Illustrator, as well as a Web Comic ( for those interested. She is not a computer geek or professional in any sense of the word, just an end user who uses her computer for basic connectivity. She uses Mandrake Linux 8.1 now and has clearly stated that she couldn’t be happier with the results. Gimp instead of Adobe Photoshop, Scsi Scanners, Wacom Art Tablets, etc. are all working wonderfully under her newest setup.
Where I currently am employed, we are moving away from Microsoft for all of our servers, and ultimately our 100 or so nodes in the companies various locations. This is a very viable option, and the time is right, given that Linux has matured as a viable alternative and also due to the ‘screw-the-consumer’ approach Microsoft has had, and has proven again that they can get away with (thanks to the DOJ).
I was an avid MS user for the past 6 years, previously coming from the Amiga and Amiga/UX platform(s) up to and including Windows 2000 professional. I’m not looking back at this point, for I’ve no need to.


Bill Kearney says:

How about using the right tools for the job?

With all this rhetoric flying about is anyone paying attention to using the right tools for the job? All this spouting about MS ignore the simple fact they DO make a number of products quite well suited to their tasks. It’s not all the same stuff. Diversity is always important. But where’s the truly better solutions from other sources?

TheCaptain says:

Re: How about using the right tools for the job?

The right tools for the right job…I agree with this sentiment. I really do. But there’s a point where this becomes a counter-productive thing to do.

Yes, there’s a lot of rhetoric. Bottom line though is that Microsoft’s tool have become the right tools for the right job not because they ARE the best…but because Microsoft will do ANYTHING to make sure they are the ONLY ones to have the tools…once we get to that point…if the tools they make aren’t the right’re SOL and they won’t want you to make your own either.

Somewhere along the way Microsoft got into this “Everything MUST belong to Microsoft” mentality that has shafted regular users…they’ve demonstrated without shame or remorse that they do not care WHAT customers want, only that they give their money to Microsoft.

So, you have a choice…you can use the “right tools for the right job” for now..until you have NO choice…OR you can explore and support alternatives…its THAT simple.

On a personal note: I no longer think that most Microsoft tools ARE the right tools for the right job…I use both Windows (95/98/2000) and Linux at my job and at home and in MOST cases, the tools I use in linux are most robust and do the job better than those in Windows. However, your mileage may vary, but you won’t KNOW until you try.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re: How about using the right tools for the job?

I agree that one should use the best software for the job. However, much of the time the best for the job is not a MS product but is so under-promoted to the general public that most people aren’t aware of them. I’m a BSD-Unix true believer and I’ve liked Apple’s style for years so I’m in love with OS 10.1. I like the idea that I can get a clean, beautiful, efficient OS from a company run by hackers. In fact, I don’t know if its still true but the HQ in Cupertino, CA had a Jolly Roger next to the Apple flag.
The best point is that MS doesn’t do any actual programming anymore. I’ve had buddies who have worked for them. All they do is make programming tools and outsource their code–they don’t even make Windows anymore!!!! They just market. That’s all they’ve ever done and it shows. Their products are so static that you have to go through contortions to get them to do something even remotely interesting. The one I hate the most is MS Publisher 2000. Add that to the fact that most everything they’ve ever touched crashes daily, and I would give my money to other companies in donation form if I could.

alternatives() says:

Hate is the wrong word

But count me in as part of the group who won’t use M$ based products, unless ‘forced’.

My ‘resistance’ efforts revolve around the simple fact I was unable to buy a laptop w/o M$ software ‘preloaded’. I neither wanted, nor have used this software, yet I was forced to pay for it, or I would not have a laptop. My end-point is suing M$ in local court. (Yes, I hope to have the flurry of wired articles etc la)

I know good software can be written.

In fact, the best example I can think of is we have software that controls a missle that can fly down streets, turn left, fly into a window and blow up. Whereas the M$ windows just blow up. I am able to get windows boxes to crash just by using them…I have yet to have a box that won’t crash within 8 hours of me sitting down and using them. (I expect them to work WITH me, like my Unix boxes do. I use the Windows box the same way I use my Unix box, and windows will crash in that usage pattern)

Perpetual Newbie says:

No Subject Given

I’m another one in the ‘hate Microsoft enough to use other software’ category, although I’ll use the Winbox often because it’s closer to the door in than the Be or BSD boxes. As far as the non-techie population, hardly anyone opposes Microsoft. Most people think that Bill Gates is an honest businessman.

Regarding “the right tool for the right job”, Microsoft’s tools often have a side effect of making it impossible to use non-Microsoft tools for other jobs where these tools would otherwise have been the right tool for the job. An example is Internet Explorer. Since version 5, it’s been the best web browser in terms of displaying pages accurately and not crashing (much). The side effect of using it is to become complacent in bad HTML and the use of proprietary things like VBScript web pages. The end result is that other operating systems for which IE is not available now cannot use the Web.

This is the best site I’ve found for listing alternate products to Microsoft’s.

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