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NewsAlert/Dallas Morning News: Mexican wunderkind takes aim at Microsoft's dominance

Jun 02, 2000, 08:01 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Brendan M. Case)

"Plotting the overthrow of the world's largest software company is no job for a part-time revolutionary, says Miguel de Icaza, a 27-year-old computer whiz who has tried it."

"A year ago, he was devising a way to turn the conventional software industry on its head, but only after his day job as a systems administrator in Mexico City."

"Now, with an Innovator of the Year award under his belt from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, he runs a company that develops alternatives to some of Microsoft Corp.'s key products."

"And he conjures up a day when his so-called open source software will be better than Bill Gates' best _ and free. In open source, the programming instructions that underlie all software are available for everyone to see and improve. That leads to programs with lower prices and fewer flaws than proprietary software such as Microsoft's, proponents say."

"de Icaza's dream has its roots in the enormous technological needs and limited resources of his native Mexico. But to achieve it, he moved to this northerly hotbed of technological innovation to found Helix Code Inc., forsaking his native city and its cuisine for the cradle of computer science and venture capital."

"I miss tacos and salsa, and lunch is a poor excuse for eating," said the homesick de Icaza. "But we have to form a team, and being here makes it a lot easier to meet people."

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