How Many Reasons Are There To Avoid “8”?

“8” is just about irrelevant for me. I can do everything I want with GNU/Linux but that does not prevent M$ from trying to restore its monopoly on PCs through hardware. M$ is requiring PCs labelled, “Dsigned for…” to include hardware that locks out unsigned software. While that is obviously an attempt to secure the PC, it is also anti-competitive and totally impractical for users of GNU/Linux. What would be the cost to a Linux kernel-developer to have to get a signing authority to sign his build several times per week? How would folks work around the GPL this way? The GPL allows the user to run the code. Can the OEM prevent that, legally? Can you see some lawsuits over this?

Clearly, M$ needs legacy PCs to run “8” so why insist on this for new PCs? That undercuts the security argument. The near-term answer must be that M$ is trying to populate the world with PCs that can run only their OS. Every country on Earth should ban the importation of such machines as illegal restraints on trade in operating systems. M$ and every OEM who goes along with this should be slapped with anti-competition actions. It is a tax on every individual, IT-using organization and small businesses who provide or install operating systems.

On top of that M$ will not run legacy apps on ARM so limiting ARM to a tiny space in IT. OEMs may well agree to produce ARMed machines for M$ but businesses will not buy them without the legacy apps working.

We have the strange situation that a business, M$, is entering a market only to stifle the market.

It’s past the time where the world should cut M$ off. No more taxation on competition. No more dictation of standards in IT. No more bullying. Enough. Use GNU/Linux and don’t do business with any OEM that does not support GNU/Linux wholeheartedly.

UPDATE
SJVN’s take on this is that OEMs won’t be snowed. I hope he’s right. M$ loves to spread around money for promotion and I would bet they will barb their hook with money the OEMs cannot afford to pass up with their tiny margins. I hope many will see that they can have higher margins with GNU/Linux.

About Robert Pogson

I am a retired teacher in Canada. I taught in the subject areas where I have worked for almost forty years: maths, physics, chemistry and computers. I love hunting, fishing, picking berries and mushrooms, too.
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80 Responses to How Many Reasons Are There To Avoid “8”?

  1. twitter says:

    Microsoft’s anti-competitive practices killed netbooks, not Asus. Xandros is not my favorite distro but Asus did a good job with it. Return rates were never worse for it than Windows. My wife, girls and even my mom used it as a video phone. The hardware and software combination is still unmatched by Microsoft. Microsoft killed it by bribing the owners of Xandros, pressuring retailers to get rid of it, and by punishing Asus in other areas of business dependent on Windows. This was all well documented by techrights at the time.

    The funny thing is that Microsoft has yet to offer OEMs anything that makes money like the EEE PC did, so OEMs are going back to it despite the treat of Microsoft retaliation. It looks like they have decided that the only thing they were doing wrong was depending on Microsoft. As India rolls out $35 tablets, OEMs have little choice but to dump Microsoft if they want to be around in a couple of years.

  2. Market share is not the only measure of success in an expanding market. Units shipped may be absolutely wonderful as we see with iPhone. Apple makes a lot of money whether they have increasing or decreasing market share because the units shipped is still rising. With netbooks, GNU/Linux was doing OK even with XP in the market but tablets have really knocked down the units shipped, not “7”.

  3. D-G says:

    “For Linux winning is more developers to create future forms. So Linux won the netbook battle even that it appeared to lose market share.”

    You have moved the goalposts again, oh dumb one.

    “This is the complete thing people like D-G will never want to admit. Linux did not lose everything about the netbook battle. Linux increased developers. Ok did not gain market share now but gaining developers is always a help.”

    Ha-ha-ha-ha-ha-ha. And ha.

    F(L)OSS lacks developers EVERYWHERE, except when it comes to the kernel. And most kernel developers are the paid kind.

    “Contrarian there are reason why Linux has avoid using hibernation. One on solid state drives you have a limited number of write cycles. No point burning threw them just because you system is slow booting. Number two you can be saving bad states like memory injection infections.”

    Could you have come up with an even more ridiculous excuse? I don’t think so. There is no hard evidence anywhere that hibernation contributes to excessive wear of an SSD. Any evidence points to SSDs being on the whole a lot more robust than theoretically thought.

    Memory Injection Infections? We are talking about Linux, aren’t we? The most secure operating system on earth.

  4. oiaohm says:

    ch remember Linux can only be used as an effective fulcrum to twist MS’s arm if it works at least some what.

    This is the point. Thank you MS for putting blood in water Linux now has more developers work on it.

    For Linux winning is more developers to create future forms. So Linux won the netbook battle even that it appeared to lose market share.

    This is the complete thing people like D-G will never want to admit. Linux did not lose everything about the netbook battle. Linux increased developers. Ok did not gain market share now but gaining developers is always a help.

    Contrarian there are reason why Linux has avoid using hibernation. One on solid state drives you have a limited number of write cycles. No point burning threw them just because you system is slow booting. Number two you can be saving bad states like memory injection infections.

    Be aware more Linux stuff is on solid state than Windows. So don’t have the insane number of writes harddrives support.

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  6. ch says:

    “So when it gets to price talking with Microsoft ASUS can straight up threaten not to ship windows for a while.”

    Congrats for getting this right, oiaohm !

    Of course, ASUS and Co. wanted to install Windows on their netbooks, but Vista (and the 2 gig it needed) was too expensive. So they threatened to use Linux instead, until MS gave them a heavily-discounted XP (and later Vista Starter) for the netbooks – mission accomplished. So that’s the best use for Linux on the desktop: As a fulcrum to twist MS’s arm.

  7. ch says:

    “why then is it not being used by the Linux fans”

    Poor drivers ?

  8. Contrarian says:

    “my Windows 7 has recovered from hibernation”

    I am somewhat puzzled by the continuous bragging of the Linux fans that Linux boot time is so much quicker than Window’s boot time. I have a main workstation that is simply left on all the time, which makes re-booting an insignificant issue and a couple of portables, a Dell laptop and an Acer netbook, that I default to hibernate for shutdown. They both recover in a few seconds, putting me back to where I left off.

    Doesn’t this mode exist for Linux? I am told that it does, but why then is it not being used by the Linux fans who apparently insist on cold re-starts? (Outside those fans who insist that their Linux machine has been running for some 99 years without a reboot, unlike the Windows machines that are forced to reboot every Patch Tuesday)

  9. D-G says:

    “D-G to run express gate the hardware still has to be Linux compatible.”

    Bullshit. Express Gate’s compatibility is only ensured for the respective hardware it’s bundled with. It’s not a general-purpose Linux distribution. It’s a useless piece of junk.

    Before Express Gate has booted, my Windows 7 has recovered from hibernation. (Yes, I speak from experience, as I own an ASUS mainboard.)

  10. D-G says:

    “That’s not an online shop. It’s bricks and mortar. Twit.”

    Sure, Pog. That’s why you can order online and have it sent to you. But perhaps I don’t understand the word “online” as defined by you.

    Stop evading the ugly truth. Showing us one online store and claiming that Linux sells and sells and sells. It’s really pathetic. You’re really pathetic.

    The neat thing is: I don’t have to even look longer than five seconds for a store selling Windows, Windows, Windows! Because 99.9% of all stores everywhere are selling Windows, Windows, Windows.

    If you need any medication, feel free to let me send you some.

  11. That’s not an online shop. It’s bricks and mortar. Twit.

  12. oiaohm says:

    D-G to run express gate the hardware still has to be Linux compatible. So when it gets to price talking with Microsoft ASUS can straight up threaten not to ship windows for a while.

    You are thinking I am thinking Linux to consumers.

    I am thinking Linux with the circling sharks of hardware markers that are circling Microsoft deciding when they should chomp down.

    Who uses it is not the factor. It is price.

  13. D-G says:

    “Express Gate is Linux by the way. So ASUS is still keeping a Linux presence on the machines.”

    Oh, yes! Express Gate! I nearly forgot about that. You’re a parrot, too. You parrot the propaganda drivel Jim Zemlin popularized when he claimed that every computer comes with Linux installed due to Express Gate/Splashtop. Even if it’s installed (which isn’t the case for most ASUS mainboards, where you have to install it by means of a Windows-only installer): who uses it? But that doesn’t matter for propagandists like Zemlin and yourself.

    You’re so stupid, it’s not even funny. What’s next? I expect solid arguments about Linux supposedly having much, much more hardware support than Windows.

  14. D-G says:

    “http://www.shuttleshop.nl/systems.php

    ‘OS: Linux OpenSUSE’

    That’s a consumer pc with Linux in the ad…”

    Yes, Pog. You’re a good parrot. Now go and write a shell script that does this for every online store that sells computers to consumers. And then let’s talk again.

    Hey, I can give you the address of a store that still sells Amiga hardware and software. That must mean that Amiga sells and sells and sells and …

    You still are a big, fat LIAR. How long has your nose grown?

  15. oiaohm says:

    D-G “ASUS recommends Windows® 7.” is paid for advertising by Microsoft.

    Express Gate is Linux by the way. So ASUS is still keeping a Linux presence on the machines.

    Yes every one of those eee machines is sold with Linux of one form or another D-G. Even the ones sold as Windows machines. Yes windows + Linux or Linux alone is all of them.

    This is the problem D-G Linux entered and never fully left. So the battle of Linux vs Windows never ended fully.

  16. http://www.shuttleshop.nl/systems.php

    “OS: Linux OpenSUSE”

    That’s a consumer pc with Linux in the ad…

  17. D-G says:

    Reality check.

    “The eeePC mentioned Linux.”

    Yes, mentioned. Since then they’ve noticed that this was a bad idea. No mention of it NOW. Windows 7, Android, MeeGo. No, no mention of Linux.

    http://www.asus.com/Eee/

    Top-right corner: “ASUS recommends Windows® 7.” Oh god, has ASUS been bought!?

    “It was a roaring success.”

    According to you, Pog. And you ARE the expert. Chuckle. But good use of the past tense, Pog. It was.

    “Debian GNU/Linux mentions Linux.”

    So what? Debian is uninteresting for consumers. Most Ubuntu users don’t know that it’s based on Debian.

    “It is one of the top distros.”

    Not in the consumer sector. (And before you start … Ubuntu ain’t Debian even though it uses it. A name is a name.)

    “IBM mentions Linux.”

    I must have missed the announcement that IBM produces consumer products again.

    “They are a huge success in IT.”

    IT. Not consumer market.

    “Oracle, RedHat,…”

    Enterprise sector. Not consumer market.

    “I have introduced GNU/Linux to thousands of warm-blooded, fuzzy humans and I never sugar-coated GNU/Linux. They loved it.”

    You know that how?

    “Linux is selling and selling and selling.”

    Linux (the kernel) is selling in consumer products without consumers knowing about it (or caring for it). Consumer products sell. Not Linux (the kernel). What one can’t see, can’t be sold or bought.

  18. D-G says:

    “Guess what? Most consumers don’t know or care about an OS. The MacBook Pro is the most popular selling notebook on Amazon.com and they don’t even mention the OS.”

    I direct your attention to this thread on your very own blog:

    http://mrpogson.com/2011/09/18/floss-a-better-way-to-do-it/

    “Consumers by and large don’t care which OS their phone is running.”

    That’s what I wrote. In the very first comment. You refuted it and claimed that people are indeed buying Android because they do care about the OS and F(L)OSS and stuff.

    But now — when it’s to your advantage — customers suddenly DO NOT CARE about the OS?

    You’re a big, fat LIAR.

  19. Contrarian says:

    “Linux is selling and selling and selling.”

    Do you ever get a twinge of reality when you have to go to these obscure places to show that Linux is even available?

  20. D-G wrote, “Success depends primarily on avoiding the mention of Linux. “

    Chuckle… You wish. The eeePC mentioned Linux. It was a roaring success. Debian GNU/Linux mentions Linux. It is one of the top distros. IBM mentions Linux. They are a huge success in IT. Oracle, RedHat,… I have introduced GNU/Linux to thousands of warm-blooded, fuzzy humans and I never sugar-coated GNU/Linux. They loved it. It was fast, sometimes on new shiny equipment and it kept working for them. Check the market. New and shiny sells. Linux is selling and selling and selling.

    Guess what? Most consumers don’t know or care about an OS. The MacBook Pro is the most popular selling notebook on Amazon.com and they don’t even mention the OS.

  21. ch says:

    “[1913 Webster]“

    Mr Pogson, could you please stop these silly games ? I know perfectly well what “shipment” means, however I quoted _your_ numbers, where _you_ compared PC shipments and MS revenues. So if _your_ numbers mean anything, it’s the opposite of what you meant to proove. And now you tell me that _your_own_ numbers are not compareable and thus meaningless, anyway ?

  22. D-G says:

    “Android, Meego and Baba are all design particularly to avoid the looking anything like Windows.”

    You got that wrong. Success depends primarily on avoiding the mention of Linux. And the only real success is Android. And as can be clearly seen Google carefully avoids associating Android with anything that reeks of Linux, even though it uses Linux (the kernel). The offerings from Apple and Microsoft are established brands, but no consumer knows what the hell to make of Linux.

    Really, are there any people besides Pog and the fat, bearded man that insist on the ludicrous term “GNU/Linux”?

  23. oiaohm says:

    Contrarian not killed is the problem. Hardware makers are still making them and improving Linux netbooks. Also are you bind

    Windows 7 Starter Edition was combind with Microsoft Office Starter.

    Simple point of the matter they had to offer something at least reasonable. This is all the result of the Linux netbooks.

    Its not if you can buy them is the long term problem for Microsoft. Its if the Hardware makers see them as profitable to keep around to base ball bat Microsoft for better deals. Result is it did not die.

    Microsoft with cheap XP was attempted and failed scorched earth.

    Please read the roadmaps of Android Baba and Meego.

    All three are planing a return to the netbook and on to the desktop.

    Linux has retreated yes is the attack over no. Taking the mobile phone market get the interface in front of end users. So making it simple to enter the desktop because users will know the OS and understand it limits.

    Yes tactical mobile phone to desktop is the correct path. People are use to Mobile phones being different.

    People have not been use to desktops being anything other than Apple and Microsoft.

    Remember before the netbooks Linux had a fairly small presence in mobile phones as well.

    Yes the netbook boom and fail. Triggered the Linux take off in mobile phones. Long term that will trigger a second wave hitting back at the desktop. This time the interface will not be alien to uses since they would have been using it on there phones and tablets.

    So yes I do expect MS to be forced to release Windows 8 on phones to attempt to stop the second wave from coming. With major damage to MS bottom line.

  24. Contrarian says:

    “M$ paid OEMs to supply XP.”

    No evidence at all of that, #pogson. Microsoft merely accomodated the requests from the netbook OEMs for Microsoft to supply an OS suitable for the reduced capability hardware that would have Windows compatibility for popular apps. That stopgap was XP and it was followed by accelerating Windows 7 Starter Edition release. Everyone was happy with that and Microsoft did not lose a dime in the process, obtaining some incremental business with the surge in netbook sales.

    “You can still buy netbooks with GNU/Linux on them. They were hurt but not killed.”

    If you go to the ends of the earth, perhaps you can, #pogson, but you cannot buy one at Best Buy or Costco, I know. Definitely there is no mainstream, mass market availability of Linux netbooks, just as there is a lack of mass market availability of Linux notebooks or desktops. You can call that “not killed” or whatever, but at the end of the day, a Linux netbook is a rare purchase by anyone.

  25. Contrarian wrote this nonsense, “Netbooks with Linux were mostly discontinued due to buyer apathy which included high return rates due to buyer remorse. Get a clue.”

    Get a clue yourself, Contrarian. M$ paid OEMs to supply XP. That cost them $1billion on their bottom line. Production of Netbooks was maxed out with GNU/Linux. Only when “7” came around and M$ raised the price were the netbooks hurt. You can still buy netbooks with GNU/Linux on them. They were hurt but not killed.

  26. Contrarian says:

    “D-G Android, baba and Meego devices are not suffering from the high return rates”

    But phones are not netbooks, #oiaohm. Netbooks with Linux were mostly discontinued due to buyer apathy which included high return rates due to buyer remorse. Get a clue.

    “The mistakes of a few OEMs to ignore well-established distros should not be laid on GNU/Linux community but those OEMs. ”

    Sure, #pogson, the people who sell computers for a living and put their money into the business are at fault for not being as wise as the wannabes who fool around with Linux for a hobby. That’s the answer.

    “M$ paid them to ship XP.”

    Well make up your mind. Was it a poor choice by the OEMs or was it bribery? What really happened was that Microsoft offered a low price for a limited edition of XP for use on resource restricted devices that met the definitions for a “netbook”. The consumers gobbled it up and the OEMs made hay while the sun was shining. MS later provided a similar version of Win7 to replace XP on units in this device class. I’m using one now, an Acer Aspire One that I got at a Costco on sale for $249. It has 1GB RAM, a 250GB HD and the bigger battery which will go for about 6 hours of continuous use or pretty much all day if I let it go into sleep mode when I am not actively using it.

  27. oiaohm says:

    ASUS was one of the ones that made the difference clear.

    Linux one had ssd so smaller hard drive value. Something windows people nartually check so kept most of the ones I will treat it like windows away.

    The ones that had the high return rates like MSI tweaked the look to look like windows and provided Linux and Windows machines with almost the same spec and same look. Asking for disaster basically.

    OEM got burnt first wave they have learnt a lot of key leasons. Of course some of them will try again.

  28. ASUS reported no particular high return rates for GNU/Linux netbooks despite the weird distro aboard. It was all about price. M$ paid them to ship XP.

  29. unit shipments… a sale is a transaction not an amount of money:
    ” The act of selling; the transfer of property, or a contract to transfer the ownership of property, from one person to another for a valuable consideration, or for a price in money.
    [1913 Webster]”

    Estimates are all we have since M$ is ashamed to publish unit shipments but estimates are around $50 for the OS. GNU/Linux can provide a good OS for much less so they are over-priced. The rise in M$’s revenues come not from increased shipments so much as increasing the tax to OEMs. When M$ was shipping XP for netbooks they charged almost nothing to keep GNU/Linux out. M$ took $1billion hit in those times. Today, with retailers not shipping XP, M$’s ASP has risen quite a bit without unit sales rising but a few percent.

    OTOH P/E for the stock is less than 10. They are not seen as a growth stock.

  30. oiaohm wrote, “Linux world is guilty at not doing enough homework before ramping up mass producing of Linux net-books.”

    The mistakes of a few OEMs to ignore well-established distros should not be laid on GNU/Linux community but those OEMs. They did not grow the culture internally before releasing “something”. Many OEMs got it right but they were not the big guys so they did not get much retail space in Walmart. Xandros? It was the “Windows” of the GNU/Linux world, an OS designed by salesmen, not users/developers. It was even burdened with an anti-virus programme… There was no decent package manager/repository. It was intended to be disposable when the software was obsolete. Other netbooks shipped with decent popular distros but were too small to be picked up by major retailers. ASUS had the name but not the substance. Now, ASUS has seen the light and is shipping Ubuntu but they missed the wave.

  31. oiaohm says:

    D-G Android, baba and Meego devices are not suffering from the high return rates. Issue solved basically.

    Make a brand that is very clearly not Windows.

    Yes first wave always hits major errors. Yes it was a big mistake in Linux marketing get over it.

    Apple has always been very careful to make out they are not Windows D-G. First wave of Linux netbooks were not good enough at getting this across so yes it back fired.

    Android, Meego and Baba are all design particularly to avoid the looking anything like Windows. Very much copy the tried and tested Apple method for competing with Microsoft.

    Linux world is guilty at not doing enough homework before ramping up mass producing of Linux net-books. Thinking it was not planned mistake should have been expected. Stacks of companies shipped stacks of cheap solutions and end customer confused them with windows because they were in the same form factor and had a similar interface at times.

    Linux world has learns from there mistakes. So next time they attempt they are stronger.

  32. ch says:

    Mr Pogson,

    would you care to explain the following ? You wrote:
    “Sales of PCs are growing a lot faster than sales of M$’s OS. M$ claims otherwise but look at the numbers:
    Q2 2011 – 84.4 million PCs ship
    Q3 2006 – 57million PCs ship

    2011 – M$’s Client division revenue = $19 billion
    2006 – M$’s Client division revenue = $10 billion”

    So you write that PC sales are growing faster than Windows sales, and than you quote figures saying the exact opposite (PC shipments up 50%, MS revenues up 90%) and claim that as proof ???

    “If the market expected M$ to be around a long time, their share price would skyrocket.”

    Oh, but the market has realized a looong time ago that MS is to stay around, so that skyrocketing happened a looong time ago.

    “That other OS (…) It’s just too expensive.”

    Question: How much do you believe the price of a Windows OEM license to be ?

  33. D-G says:

    “Why were Linux netbooks rejected. They looked in interface lot like Windows notebooks. Consumers are poor at telling the difference.”

    Yes, very poor, oh delusional one. That’s why the majority of said consumers returned those Linux netbooks BECAUSE they didn’t have Windows on them.

    http://blog.laptopmag.com/ubuntu-confirms-linux-netbook-returns-higher-than-anticpated

    Will you be done anytime soon with your ridiculous Pinocchio statements?

  34. oiaohm says:

    Contrarian you missed something.

    Why were Linux netbooks rejected. They looked in interface lot like Windows notebooks. Consumers are poor at telling the difference.

    Android and Baba already have a very strong brand image and people know they are not Windows. Meego is also an attempt to build a different brand image.

    Remember the fist boom in Linux netbooks caught the Linux world on the hop acer was just expecting to sell under 1 million units. There was basically no prep of the market to cope done.

    Result back fire was to be expected.

    SSD is many times more expensive than harddrives.

    http://indamixx.com/indamixx-marketplace-3.html Just for something different a Meego tablet with Windows 7 duel boot.

    Linux tablets exist out there just have to know where to look. To use the indamixx provided software you have to use there Meego OS.

    http://justamp.blogspot.com/2011/06/new-android-tablet-archos-c-from-hard.html There are android tablets out there as well with hardrives that are cheaper than Acer Aspire One.

    Some can infact use the Xoom docking stations.

    Yep 100 dollars more 16 of flash and a 250 gb harddrive. So larger hard drive and faster starting than the Acer Aspire One. If you go archos.

    Of course I would be waiting for icecream sandwitch before buying an android tablet. Man reason Android 3.x was mostly a prototype. Icecream sandwitch enabled application developers to design dynamic interfaces that change for small and large screen set-ups.

  35. Contrarian says:

    I don’t think that you can claim that with any certainty, #pogson. Consumer choice is more complex than you suggest.

    For starters, consider that tablets in the 10″ size are more expensive than netbooks of equivalent size. A Motorola Xoom 32gb is $499 and an iPad is up to $699 for wi-fi only models. An Acer Aspire One is as low as $255 at Amazon with 160GB of HD. People buying on price alone are not going to buy a tablet.

    Maybe an ARM netbook would be cheaper, but it is not so much less than the Aspire, eh? Current proposals from no-name OEMs are talking $230 to $270 retail prices with minimal 8GB SSD. Remember the initial netbooks with Linux and similar limitations? I don’t see where putting an even less capable processor into the ARM netbook is going to change anything. The Linux SSD netbooks died an early death in the market. If they are starting out at the same price, carrying the performance and capacity handicaps will keep them as non-starters, I think.

    Also, people perceive netbooks to be little laptops, with low end prices and low end performance, albeit better mobility in terms of weight. They rejected Linux before, they will reject Linux again. Nothing changes.

  36. Ray says:

    About dividends, when a company notices that it’s more worth it to pay the shareholders directly, instead of reinvesting them, it does that, making the stock price growth slower, or flat.

  37. That other OS will not remain a base part of ARM, however. It’s just too expensive. If M$ cuts prices for the ARMed version of the OS, consumers will sooner buy ARM. QED.

  38. Contrarian says:

    “If I expect to earn a dividend about 9 months from now, I can pay more for the shares knowing I will get a return on investment.”

    Ignoring the common situation where dividends are paid quarterly for most stocks that pay dividends at all, you have a rather simplistic view of the stock market. There are a lot of strategies and many investors are told by predators in the market to buy and hold on for dear life to get the small dividend returns offered. Compared to alternatives such as CDs, a 3% return on MSFT stock can look good to an investor, but it is not a good way to maximize gains.

    I like the covered call writing strategy, which is relatively low risk, low enough to qualify for self-managed IRAs in the US. Here you buy a stock and sell a call at some fixed future price and immediately pocket a premium. For example, if you had purchased Dell stock, say 1000 shares, on August 22, 2011, you would have paid $14,080 for the stock and you could have sold calls at a strike price of $14 for 80 cents a share for execution by September 21, 2011. You would thus have received $14000 for your shares and kept the $800 premium for a net profit of $720 for the month. Commission at eTrade would have reduced that to about $680 which is a net return of nearly 60% for the 30 days you were invested in the play.

    That is, of course, a “win” for the play and you could find yourself on the short end if Dell stock had gone down, but in the long run, it seems to pay off fairly often. What is key is finding a stock that is popular enough to generate some call option action and stable enough to not go into the tank and leave you holding the bag. Since you are willing to hold a stock for 9 months in anticipation of dividends, that should not be a real problem with you anyway, since you are assumming the risk of declines. So why not collect the call premiums which are greater than dividends in most cases?

  39. Contrarian says:

    “M$’s business model is not sustainable.”

    It is amazing how you can leap to such an unfounded conclusion, #pogson. You show where their business model has been very successful and even admit to the fact that it continues to grow and then you pull some nonsense out of thin air. You should at least be willing to look at things realistically and give the devil his due.

    The product being sold is the “Wintel PC” and various OEMs are in business solely because they are supplying that very product. Windows is a fundamental ingredient for participation in that market segment. One could make “Lintel” or even “LinARM” machines, of course, and various companies have tried over the years with no real success. Maybe they will manage to eke out some success someday, but I doubt it. You certainly cannot rely on it.

    Price pressure on OEMs is generated by cost cutting made possible through continued automation of production. Prices cannot fall below a sustaining level for the markets low price producer(s), LPP. Maybe there are future shake-outs, but Windows will remain a base part of Wintel in the future.

  40. If I expect to earn a dividend about 9 months from now, I can pay more for the shares knowing I will get a return on investment. M$’s share price is going nowhere. They bring out the “world’s greatest OS” and they are back at square one. If the market expected M$ to be around a long time, their share price would skyrocket.

  41. Sales of PCs are growing a lot faster than sales of M$’s OS. M$ claims otherwise but look at the numbers:

    Q2 2011 – 84.4 million PCs ship

    Q3 2006 – 57million PCs ship

    2011 – M$’s Client division revenue = $19 billion
    2006 – M$’s Client division revenue = $10 billion

    So, in a period when PC shipment volume rose 1/3, M$ nearly doubled client revenue and selling prices of PCs plummeted. OEMs have noticed that M$ is not sharing their pain and will do something about it by going with FLOSS. Why should the OEMs who do most of the work not get more of the gravy? M$’s business model is not sustainable.

  42. Contrarian says:

    “Consumers are not aware that Linux-based consumer devices are based on Linux, and they don’t care”

    A lot has to do with the fact that usage of smart phones is pretty consistent from phone to phone and the Android phones have come to MOL imitate the iPhone in terms of look and feel. Differentiation between makers is focused on hardware and price. OS software has no usefully different effect on a user’s experience, so they are all seen as being the same.

    One big thing that keeps being overlooked is the fact that Windows client OS sales are around $20B per year and Apple actually sells over a billion dollars worth of upgrades to OS X users annually. There are some crumbs for others, too, selling Linux packages or support. No such market exists for phone/tablet OS, in spite of the hundreds of millions of units being sold annually. OEMs mostly either make their own OS, Apple and RIM, or use Android for free.

    The comparatively few WP7 licenses sold, if they are not being given away, probably represent close to 100% of the actual commercial market for such software. Can Microsoft grow that business profitably? I don’t know, but they are the only one trying to do that.

    It is a wrong view of business to compare Windows computer sales to other things that are not part of that market, even things like Macintosh computer sales. Particularly it is wrong to consider “lost” PC sales due to a person using a phone or tablet and so not buying a laptop. The only thing that really matters is the sales volume that can be obtained in the actual market and the figures that surround it such as development and fulfillment costs and management costs. Is it a viable business with some value? If yes, they will stay in it. Right now, they are generating a billion dollars a month after paying these costs and it is growing from year to year.

    Maybe WP7 will have a similar story, maybe not.

  43. Contrarian says:

    “Dividends should raise the price of the stock…”

    When a dividend is paid, the price of a stock declines about the same amount, reflecting the fact that the holder of record is entitled to the dividend on the date it is set rather than the holder of the stock.

    MSFT shares have moved sideways for a decade. It is a great stock for anyone using a covered call option strategy. Old Reliable, so to speak.

    Over time, it has outperformed Apple, too, even with the latest run up for AAPL.

    http://finance.yahoo.com/q/bc?t=my&s=MSFT&l=on&z=l&q=l&c=aapl

  44. D-G says:

    “D-G simple fact you are narrow minded.”

    The simple fact is that you’re a loon whose hatred of Microsoft is, above all, ideologically motivated. None of your prophecies regarding the fate of Microsoft have come true. None.

    I don’t believe for even one second that Microsoft (or any other company) is immune to failure. But if this will ever happen the reasons will be: Apple, Google, and so on and so forth. The reason will be capitalist companies.

    Face the facts:

    – The year of the Linux desktop has never come.
    – The year of the Linux-based smartphone and tablet would’ve never come without Google (and Apple before them).
    – Consumers are not aware that Linux-based consumer devices are based on Linux, and they don’t care.

    Linux has won? No, Linux has lost! Because it has become deeply and thoroughly incorporated by a multitude of capitalist companies. Those are certainly interested in profit, but not in the ideology of a fat, bearded man and his loon followers. For a company Linux is a mere tool in the toolbox. Nothing more.

  45. oiaohm says:

    D-G simple fact you are narrow minded.

    Microsoft state in the market is becoming unstable. Either Microsoft will stabilise it or fail.

    History suggest fail. In the process tripping another anti-trust case.

    Of course D-G you are not aware of the developer working on porting open source office suites to Android. There is more going on at the moment than most people presume.

  46. D-G says:

    The train of thought of freetards:

    Yada, yada, yada, yada, yada.

    Oh, Microsoft is not dead. I just assumed they were.

    Yada, yada, yada, yada, yada.

    Oh, Microsoft still isn’t dead. Well, they’ll be dead tomorrow.

    Yada, yada, yada, yada, yada.

    Oh, Microsoft HASN’T DIED LAST NIGHT? I swear, THEY WILL BE DEAD NEXT YEAR.

    Yada, yada, yada, yada, yada.

    Oh my, it’s my 90th birthday. And Microsoft IS STILL THERE? Just let me die!

    In the afterlife:

    Oh god no! Microsoft runs heaven?

  47. oiaohm says:

    Contrarian ipad don’t have the connects the androids devices have. Or the second OS lot of androids have the option of once you connect an hdmi and usb keyboard.

    Docking stations for desktop 299 is for name brand Motorola clones are under 100 dollars. Thinking there is basically nothing much in circuit the clones are not much risk.

    Really the xoom laptop portable dock has advantages over the Acer aspire one. You can put phone in pocket leave dock in room and if someone nicks it what do they have of your data. Nothing.

    Secuirty for the people on the move Contrarian more of these phone dock portable will appear.

  48. see Nasdaq Chart showing split

    The chart is continuous at the split showing stock prices were adjusted to look the same before and after the split. Dividends should raise the price of the stock…

  49. Ray says:

    Twitter, about Microsoft’s stock price half of what’s in 2003, it had a stock split, then had dividends after that, instead of letting the stock value rise.

  50. Contrarian says:

    I was thinking of the docking station for the phone that you were on aqbout some time back, #pogson. It was $299 IIRC.

    Perhaps you can connect your two USB cables to an iPad as you suggest, but it sort of looks silly and it is still about twice the price of an Acer Aspire One and less convenient. People would laugh at you, I am sure.

  51. KBD and mouse: $19.98

    How is $20 going to become hundreds more?

  52. Contrarian says:

    Then you lose whatever the mobility advantage might have been, #pogson. And you end up with a clumsy kludge that costs hundreds more than a laptop or netbook with equivalent bulk.

    And you still have a very limited set of computer functionality.

  53. One can attach keyboard and mouse to tablets via USB. It works and costs much less than many PCs.

  54. Contrarian says:

    “I kept track of the trend while it was easier for them to hide. No one is fooled anymore.”

    That is true, #twitter, if only because no one was ever fooled to begin with. I note where you say”

    “Office profits continue to decline.”

    No one is fooled by your claims, though. MS Business Division sales rose from $19B to $22B and profits from that division rose from $11B to $14B since your sage proclamation.

    http://biz.yahoo.com/e/110728/msft10-k.html

    Do you think you are fooling anyone anymore? Do you think that you ever fooled anyone outside of the rabid MS haters who you consort with on blogs and forums? Don’t stop your preaching to the unsuspecting choir, #twitter, it gives us a good laugh.

  55. Contrarian says:

    “So, it does matter that Android/Linux and GNU/Linux have thousands of apps running already on ARM and M$ has only a few.”

    It matters to a considerable degree as to just what the app does, #pogson. Phone apps are very lightweight in general, designed for quickly determining some specific piece of information that can be referenced while walking down the office aisle or driving one’s car.

    Tablets, with larger screens, offer the possibility of more intricate apps, but there is an inherent set of limitations. If you have a small screen tablet, you are in the same fix as you are with a phone and all that you have is an oversized phone that cannot make calls. That has not been much of a winner in the market as the dozens of no-name tablets being sold at fire-sale prices confirms.

    If you create a big enough tablet to do some intricate work, such as the iPad, you have a problem with input functionality. If all you are doing is downloading complex data for display, such as charts and reports, there is no problem. But if you have to interact with a lot of input of your own, say typing this answer to your post, then you are at a great disadvantage. For one thing, you cannot do that while holding the tablet by the edge. It is too heavy for prolonged use in that mode. For another, the one finger typing characteristic of touch keys makes a simple task into a long time project.

    That leaves the tablet in a precarious position in that it cannot adequately replace even a netbook in the common computer usage roles and it is only viable at the larger size end of the spectrum where it has no cost advantage over other solutions. Large screens lose some effect in the mobility class, too, since their power consumption rises.

  56. oiaohm says:

    D-G There are office suites on android like quick office.

    Basically there is a market there for OpenOffice or koffice on android just they are not simple to port. Also there are appearing more and more hi-bred android devices. Plug in the hdmi port and keyboard on particular makers devices get a custom version of ubuntu on the hdmi Even that the phone is running android the rest of the time.

    The battle is getting more interesting Samsung looks like they are going to throw there own version of Linux for phones into the mix as well for other hardware makers to use. Yes the Samsung own version is older than android. So a two hardware makers with OS’s vs two non hardware makers.

    Hardware makers Google and Samsung.

    Also that is not taking into account the fact Meego using comerical solution has picked up the means to run android applications.

    Next 12 months is going to see a lot of interesting things happen. Mostly harder for apple and Microsoft since they will be fighting with the very companies they need supporting them.

  57. D-G says:

    “I have it on good authority of oldman and many others that ‘it’s about the apps’, and ‘people run apps not OS’. So, it does matter that Android/Linux and GNU/Linux have thousands of apps running already on ARM and M$ has only a few.”

    Ah, yes, twist my words again, Pog.

    What’s to be found in Apple’s app store? In Google’s Android Market? Are there re-compiled apps in there? No. There are mostly original apps in there. There’s no frackin OpenOffice to be found in Google’s Android Market. Anywhere. You don’t buy a tablet or a smartphone to then run OpenOffice on it.

    Metro is a new user interface paradigm, just as iPhone/iPad and Android presented new user interface paradigms. It makes no frackin sense to simply re-compile apps. And therefore it is of no consequence that Windows 8 on ARM won’t run legacy apps that were created for another user interface paradigm.

    Did John Carmack simply re-compile Wolfenstein 3D for the iPhone? No, he had to adapt it to the platform.

    But, hey, I understand it. Android is after all just another Linux. You simply re-compile your pitiful apps, which have butt-ugly UIs to begin with, and throw them out there without any kind of adaptation. Then you wonder why it all sucks. Great plan, Pog. I already like it. Unfortunately that only happens in your mind. Reality is different.

  58. M$’s share has been decreasing for years now. That’s real. It’s happening. Share price is $25, after the amazing, wonderful, must-have “7” and even with “8” expected real soon now and xboxes finally breaking even and a $5 dividend… The reason? Their OS client division revenue is down, not up.

  59. D-G wrote, “That’s of no consequence. It doesn’t make ANY kind of sense running heavy desktop applications on your beloved smart ARM devices, especially when — in the case of Windows 8 — they haven’t been written with Metro in mind.”

    I have it on good authority of oldman and many others that “it’s about the apps”, and “people run apps not OS”. So, it does matter that Android/Linux and GNU/Linux have thousands of apps running already on ARM and M$ has only a few.

  60. D-G says:

    Pog, get over ARM already, will you? Are you a parrot? Microsoft has announced that legacy apps won’t run on Windows 8/ARM. We know it, Pog. That’s of no consequence. It doesn’t make ANY kind of sense running heavy desktop applications on your beloved smart ARM devices, especially when — in the case of Windows 8 — they haven’t been written with Metro in mind. Only people like you wet their pants about a YouTube video where a guy is showing how OpenOffice Writer starts up on his N900 in excruciatingly slow 55 seconds.

    Go back playing in the sandbox, Pog.

  61. D-G says:

    Yes, Twit, move the goalposts. Move them, move them, move them. You have predicted Microsoft’s collapse for — how many years now? And yet it doesn’t come to pass. Intelligent people would’ve noticed something by now. But any intelligence you have is superseded by your apparent mental failings. Your predictions are about as accurate as Roland Emmerich’s 2012. But that movie was mildly entertaining while the stream of unconsciousness from your brain is just so very boring.

  62. twitter says:

    Microsoft can claim all the sales they want, but they can’t hide their losses and downsizing. I kept track of the trend while it was easier for them to hide. No one is fooled anymore.

    Quit thinking of my fly, Contrarian, the free software world does not work like Microsoft does and you can’t get into my good graces that way.

  63. and their desktop OS? I am not interested im their toys and locked-in customers. The world is bypassing them.

  64. Google has a deadly marketing plan. The OEMs can push it hard no matter what M$ does and most of the work for hardware and apps is done by others. Google gets to take over small cheap computers while the “partners” see ever-tightening margins with M$. Google, in a few years, gets a platform for search/advertising several times larger than M$ got in decades. ARMed thingies, being nimble are good for everyone but M$ and Intel.

  65. Contrarian says:

    ““Irrelevant to you, maybe, but not to me nor to M$.”

    As long as we are on the topic, though, my thoughts here are that the only relevance to you would be some misplaced hope that soothes your frustration in regard to desktop Linux have such little traction in the PC market year after year after year. “Yeah, Android! Show those miserable creatures!”

    A more interesting question is whether it is actually relevant to Microsoft. I think not, because Android, Apple, and RIM are all really lumped into one big ball vis-a-vis Microsoft’s strategy for making some serious entry into the phone and tablet markets. It matters not whether Android has 50% and Apple 40% or if Apple has 80% and Android 10%. Their strategy is going to be the same and their results will be the same regardless.

    Either Microsoft will be able to strongly differentiate their offerings from the rest or they will not. I think Android is the easier target, since it lacks any real focus and direction, than Apple with their strong brand recognition and loyal following.

  66. Contrarian says:

    Forgive, me, #pogson. I was going to reply to you and then changed to #twitter’s:

    “Four years ago, I said they would be out of business or greatly reduced in five years”

    Somehow the clip got confused. Blame it on a poor implementation of cut and paste by Microsoft.

  67. Contrarian says:

    “Irrelevant to you, maybe, but not to me nor to M$.”

    Clod. Four years ago, MSFT annual sales were at an all time high of $51B This year they have grown to $69B in spite of weathering a period of extreme economic recession. That’s almost 40% growth and is hardly an “implosion” along your silly “predicted lines”.

    “Real justice will come when victims of anti-trust raid what’s left and pierce the corporate veil to be justly compensated.”

    You are a real piece of work, #twitter! Who do you get to tie your shoes and zip your fly? You might think about replacing them, whoever they are, with someone more intelligent!

  68. twitter says:

    Microsoft’s implosion is running along predicted lines and it does give me some satisfaction. Four years ago, I said they would be out of business or greatly reduced in five years. Since then, they have suffered massive layoffs, loss of key partners like HP and increasing debt, despite indirect government bail outs. Their stock price is still less than half their 1999 value where other companies, such as Apple, Google, Red Hat and IBM have recovered and grown. I would not have been surprised if the company had gone belly up a year or two ago and I won’t be surprised when it happens in a year or two. Vista/7/8 was the company’s swan song but it was without beauty or success. No one really wants it and the market is routing around Microsoft’s damage. Real justice will come when victims of anti-trust raid what’s left and pierce the corporate veil to be justly compensated.

  69. D-G wrote, of software for platforms, “Windows 8 will have plenty of that. Much more than Linux. “

    “8” is a long way off. M$ usually releases about one year after BUILD but with so many changes it will likely take longer. I think we are looking at end of 2012 at the earliest. M$ loses agility by making itself its own bottleneck and by making overly complex code. On ARM, few if any of the legacy apps are running now so it is a major re-write. Since the most complex apps are of similar size to the OS, some may not be ready for much more than a year. If M$ arrives on smart thingies in 18months with no applications, it will be Phoney “7” all over again.

    In the meantime Google and its buddies are producing code and hardware at a great rate. In these risky times, I don’t see any OEM stock-piling millions of ARMed devices in the hopes that M$ delivers. They will be shipping Android/Linux.

  70. D-G says:

    “It’s not going to work because people want a computer when they buy a PC, not a poorly functioning imitation of an iPhone or some other jailed entertainment device.”

    Actually, what people don’t want is getting patronized by loons and a fat, bearded man.

    But let’s ask ourselves: what’s the purpose of a computer? Its purpose is to run software. And Windows 8 will have plenty of that. Much more than Linux. F(L)OSS, freeware, shareware, commercial. You name it.

  71. Contrarian says:

    “I’ve been laughing at Vista’s failure…”

    Doubtless it is a sort of maniacal laughter as heard in various asylums, #twitter! I particularly liked the foresight you exhibited with:

    “Vista has failed [officialy] and M$ may soon go out of business….”

    You sound a lot like #pogson there. Of course 4+ years later you are strumming the same silly tune. Do you take any notice of the fact that all of your “predictions” turn to the same sort of dust?

  72. twitter says:

    Actually, I’ve been laughing at Vista’s failure and the even worse performance of Vista 7 for some time now. Digital handcuffs wrecked Vista and Windows 8 is going deeper into the same territory. It’s not going to work because people want a computer when they buy a PC, not a poorly functioning imitation of an iPhone or some other jailed entertainment device. A device that only accepts signed binaries from Microsoft will have all the flexibility of computerized typewriters of the early 90s and will do about as well in the market place as those did. Windows 8 can only succeed if governments mandate it’s use.

    Free software use on such a device, of course, is a bad joke. Getting free software to work on a device that needs Microsoft’s keys is a non starter, no matter what license the bootloader will use. The purpose of this system once known as Paladium is controlled computing. The usual Microsoft problems will be used to hijack running processes, so malware authors and botnets won’t be slowed down at all. Users, on the other hand, will be completely screwed in ways Richard Stallman listed ten years ago.

  73. kolter.online says:

    I like how the new BSOD is being reveiwed as a feature on every tech site.

    MS is a joke.

    🙁
    We sold you garbage! It is defective by design. Pay us more moneys to have the latest defects!

  74. Contrarian says:

    “We will see if any OEMs want to take yet another loss on another version of Vista”

    We will indeed see that, #twitter! What will you do when they do? Shake your fist and howl at the moon as usual? I suspect that is all that you are good for.

  75. Digital Restrictions Management is incompatible with Free Software. Even if the bootloader were changed as you suggest, the problem of signing all FLOSS software is still impractical. This is not about security. If the bootloader would load any software, there is no enhanced security. The solution to malware/intrusions is not DRM but better software.

  76. Ivan says:

    By the way, the problem with UEFI is that the FOSSies haven’t figured out a way to sign their bootloader.

    It’s really a simple solution, ditch grub2 for a sanely licensed tool that can be signed and distributed, legally, without giving everyone the key.

    The feature would help to prevent data theft and is not designed to prevent competition on laptops or desktops. Deep inside, I suspect you already know this.

  77. twitter says:

    Vista 8 is irrelevant, Microsoft might not be. We will see if any OEMs want to take yet another loss on another version of Vista while Android and Apple makers rake in fine earnings. My prediction is that they have about as good a shot at that as they do of convincing phone carriers to use whatever the mobile version of Windows is called these days. Wintel is dead and Microsoft blustering to conceal the sound of the company’s implosion.

  78. M$ has a major campaign of “technological evengelism” under way to sell their “vapourware” and to freeze the market. Every fifth story is about M$ on the IT sites. I am not particularly interested in “8” but if the effects of it intruded into my cave, I will respond. If M$ can lock-in OEMs to deliver M$-specific hardware governments should swat them.

  79. D-G says:

    Hey, Pog, you got over the fact that vendors decided to abandon floppy disk drives when Linux was still being delivered on floppy disks. I’m sure that you’ll get over this, too. Look at the bright side: the more computers are sold where you can’t turn off secure boot the less choice for you to be forced to buy evil Windows 8 computers and pay that damn Windows tax.

    Why so ungrateful, Pog? Microsoft just wants to help you.

  80. Ivan says:

    Sounds like you are trying to convince yourself that the choice you made to support Linux is the correct one. One question, if Microsoft Windows 8 is so irrelevant, why are you posting about it?

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