Surprising facts about Microsoft
Bill Gates is often described as a visionary. If this is the case, it has actually quite poor eyesight, because if Microsoft was able to get on the train of all the new technologies, particularly the Internet, it was always done with a delay on other. With regard to mobiles, this delay was particularly slow. The response time of Microsoft does it tend to stretch over time? The firm is known for its dirty tricks against competitors, which helped give it a virtual monopoly in the areas of OS and office suites. Maybe it did some mischief, and other oddities that you do not already know?
- Bill Gates, founder of Microsoft was he a visionary? When the CEO of Apple in 1997 told him that their next OS will be Next they bought to Steve Jobs, here is the reaction of Gates:
Do you really think Steve Jobs has anything there? I know this technology, it's nothing but warmed-over UNIX, and you'll never be able to make it work on your machines. Don't you understand that Steve doesn't know anything about technology? He's just a super salesman. I can't believe you're making such a stupid decision. He doesn't know anything about engineering, and 99% of what he says and thinks is wrong. What the hell are you buying that garbage for?
- Steve Jobs said in his biography:
"The only problem with Microsoft is that they have no taste. They don't bring a lot of innovations, they don't push culture into their products. They make really third products that have no spirit in them."
- Microsoft registered astonishing trademarks: the numbers 1 and 1.0, the letters A to Z, " Les galagoogoo", "Ella Elephanilla", "Grabbed by the ghoulies", "microsoftlovesappeldeveloppers".
- IBM has not asked Microsoft to build an operating system for their future PC because the CEO of Digital Research did a fly for fun on his plane, as the legend tells (encouraged by Bill Gates).
IBM and Digital Research did not agree on conditions for a license on CP/M, IBM then turned to Microsoft to provide an OS. Microsoft had a contract for the BASIC language and was afraid of losing this contract, so it managed to provide an OS too. For $ 50,000 it acquired from SCP a clone of CP/M named QDOS. It became MS/DOS.
So what did the Microsoft fortune, MS/DOS, was slightly under constraint... These visionaries! (Ref.)
- In 1997, Microsoft had a giant server called TerraServer, and thanks to the data provided by a satellite had experimentally mapped the earth, making a kind of Google Earth long before Google. But the firm seen no commercial interest in that. The project was completely abandoned in 2007.
- In 1995, Microsoft created Bob, a graphical interface but facing a poor success, abandoned the project in 1996. It had its domain name, bob.com. Later the domain was exchanged against windows2000.com. The name of the owner of the domain was Bob!
- In 2008, Microsoft tried to buy Yahoo for $ 45 billion, without success. It then launched a new search engine, Bing in 2009.
In 2012, Yahoo was worth $ 21 billion. When CEO Steve Ballmer was asked what he thinks, he replied:
Sometimes we are lucky!
- In 1977, Bill Gates, the Microsoft co-founder was arrested for speeding, which resulted in the picture below according to the procedure in the USA. This photo was often displayed on the Web, which led Bill Gates say one day: "There are pictures you would like to see removed from the Web," without explicitly designate it.
Yet journalists have noticed that in Outlook 2010, the default image to illustrate a profile is a shape that coincides perfectly with this picture of Bill Gates taken by the police, as illustrated in the following photomontage made by Cryonie.com:
- Internet Explorer was not originally a Microsoft product. It was a licensed version of the Spyglass Mosaic browser that had sold licenses to 120 companies. Microsoft had then 5 programmers to the project. Gradually, the code was customized by Microsoft. In 1996, 100 programmers have developed IE 3.0. In 1999, more than 1,000 developers were working on Internet Explorer. (Source).
According to the license, Microsoft had to pay royalties on every copy sold of IE. But as it was provided for free with Windows, the firm paid nothing. This led them to be sued by Spyglass, then a settlement occured.
- In 1997, Java was seen as a threat to Microsoft because applications can run on any OS. So they added to Windows a JVM that allowed to develop Java applications running only on Windows. Sun, the creator of Java sued them and got a settlement. During the trial, an email from Bill Gate surfaced which stated:
Do we have a clear plan on what we want Apple to do, to undermine Sun?
In September 2010, on the occasion of Windows Phone launch, Microsoft employees are organizing a funeral for the iPhone. In retrospect in 2017, it's fun with the official announcement of the end of the development of Microsoft's mobile system because of its insignificant market share.
- When Google introduced the Nexus One in 2010, Microsoft stated that it was a mistake because manufacturers would not want to use Android. In 2012 Microsoft launched the Surface tablet. In 2014 it bought Nokia Mobile. About vision ...
- The firm has created a website, Scroogled intended solely to criticize Google. Microsoft has hired a propaganda specialist, Mark Penn, who worked previously for election campaigns of politicians, and has now the sole task to attack Google. It sells for example a t-shirt like the one shown to the right: "Stay calm while Google steals your data."
- In 2013 Microsoft was ordered to pay 560 million by Europa to have "forgotten" for two years the browser choice screen that it was committed to display since 2010.
- To the question "People get passionate when Apple comes out with the iPhone. Is that something that you'd want to feel about Microsoft?", Steve Ballmer answered (in 2007)
It's sort of a funny question. Would I trade 96% of the market for 4% of the market? (Laughter.) I want to have products that appeal to everybody. (...) There's no chance that the iPhone is going to get any significant market share. No chance.
- Microsoft has also launched a mobile in 2010, after buying the mobile manufacturer Danger (in 2008). Kin has sold only four thousand copies and was immediately removed from the market.
- VMS and Windows NT operating systems were made by the same developer. The acronym for Windows NT, WNT is VMS with a shift to a letter in the alphabet, as well as HAL (paranoid computer in the movie 2001: A Space Odyssey) was IBM if you go back one letter in the alphabet.
- Before to be called XBox, Microsoft's console was offered different names that were rejected. For example, MEGA that looked too much like SEGA, Lex which evokes Lex Luthor, VIP a little pretentious as MAX or OM that was the acronym for "Odyssey of the Mind". MET, MOX, TAC, FACE have been denied too. See the complete list.
- Microsoft asked Barnes et Noble and several companies including to pay a fee for these patents: The 372 patent is a method to load a Web page that has a background image (something that Netscape was using long before Microsoft). The patent 780 relates to an icon in the browser that displays the loading status.
According to B & N, some of these patents relate to things that are not even implemented used on their tablet.
In April 2012, the conflict turns into agreement: the two companies signed an agreement for distribution of goods from B & N by Microsoft. There is no more question of trial.
- Microsoft is co-owner with Apple and RIM Rockstar Consortium, a company whose sole purpose is to claim rights on software patents owned by the three companies. Having no other activity this company can not be countersued and it so protects Microsoft and Apple from any actions in retaliation.
It use reverse-engineering services to analyze all software on the market.
Bill Gates is shareholder of Intellectual Venture, a similar patent troll. The name of the lawyer is Finnochio ! (Ref). His real name is Pinocchio, but he lied about the spelling ;)
- In 2013, Microsoft was sued to its search engine by a patent troll, Vringo, living of remnants of Lycos. A patent describes how to sort ads based on click-throughs! Microsoft make a settlement and agreed to transfers 6 patents to Vringo, gives it $ 1 million (to help sue Google?). All that providing to get 5% of what Vringo will perceive by suing Google for the same patents. Difficult to be more evil!
In August 15, 2014, the Court of Appeal overseeing the case Vringo against Google ruled that Vringo's patents were invalid because too obvious. Microsoft will receive 5% of nothing.
- When Steve Ballmer announced on 23 August 2013 that he will soon leave his position as CEO of Microsoft, the share price increased to 8%. With the stock he owns, Ballmer then enriched with 625 million dollars!
How to become rich and dumb at once...
- In 2013, the firm earned $ 2 billion for its patents on Android. One can easily estimate that Windows Phone and its mobile activity caused it to lose more than that since they lost 900 million over the year to Surface RT only. The patents in question are not revealed, but since they are not bypassed, it is no doubt that is for the FAT file system for external drives and things of that nature.
Over the same period, the firm loses the same amount on the Xbox, so Android is used to finance the Microsoft console!
- The US might not have abolished software patents but at least counteract the negative effects such as the "Patent trolls". 89% of the trials concerning software patent in 2013. A reform was proposed in 2013. This would have been the end of the patent trolls that extort businesses with fictitious inventions. But intense lobbying from Microsoft (and IBM) killed the reform, according to the Washington Post.
They launched a lobbying campaign and sends a letter saying "this law could harm U.S. innovators by unnecessarily undermining the rights of patent holders. (...) and discourages investment.". Such as the FAT32 file system?.
- In January 2014, Microsoft's revenue come from the following products: enterprise software (47%), consumer software including Windows (23%), hardware including XBox (14%), other business equipment (8%), consumers (8%).
- In March 2016, the former Romanian telecommunications Minister Gabriel Sandu is sentenced to two years in prison for having accepted bribes (around € 4 million) from Microsoft to equip schools with Windows and software above the market price rather than free Linux or ChromeOS.
- In May 2016, Microsoft added his two cents in the Oracle lawsuit against Google, the first accusing the second to have its own implementation of the Java API (since Google turned to OpenJDK, a free implementation officially allowed).
The district court’s [original ruling] that the Java platform was not copyrightable at all was flawed as a matter of copyright law and policy, and would destabilize the software industry.
Fun when you know that Microsoft in the past tried to impose its Windows version of Java and renounced after a trial by Sun!