Microsoft Kills Off Two Products Bill Gates Thought Would Be Enhanced By The Internet
from the so-much-for-that-plan dept
Dave Winer points to an email Bill Gates sent him nearly fifteen years ago, where Gates insisted that the internet would enhance, rather than harm, the market for two specific Microsoft products:
The Internet is a great phenomena. I don’t see how the emergence of more information content on a network can be a bad thing for the personal computer industry. Will it cause less personal computers to sell? I think quite the opposite. Less copies of Flight Simulator or Encarta?
Winer notes this in relation to the news that Microsoft has decided to shut down Encarta, its “encyclopedia” product that was originally on CD-ROM and was supposed to take on Britannica, before it (and, to some extent — though it’s disputed — Britannica) got steamrolled by Wikipedia online.
However, it’s also worth noting that this seems to have happened just months after Microsoft also shuttered the group that makes Flight Simulator. Given that these were the two specific products that Gates called out in his email, it seems amusing that both are being killed by Microsoft months apart from each other.
Of course, both Encarta and Flight Simulator could have done better online, but neither did very much to really adapt to what the internet allowed. Both could have been much more in an online world, but failed to live up to their potential.