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osOpinion: Ain't Holdin' My Breath

Sep 08, 1999, 05:57 (4 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Xavier Basora)

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"Sun's announcement of its purchase of Star Division, and its offer of a thin client version of Star Office, quickly prompted Steve Ballmer to offer a similar service for MS Office. I have no arguments with Ballmer's announcement about offering a thin client version of Office. What bemuses me, nevertheless, is that Ballmer gave no details or dates. It smacks as yet another vaporware product in Microsoft's virtual product catalogue. Well I ain't holdin' my breath for and neither is anyone else."

"Why? First, what makes MS, and to a lesser extent Sun, think it'll succeed where Corel Office for JAVA and LOTUS' Esuite failed? I remember the grief that Michael Cowpland had to endure in '96 from the mainstream computer magazines. Their journalists lambasted Corel Office for JAVA because it was too fat, too slow and unstable. Well, it turns out that Cowpland was 3 years ahead of anyone, it's just the technology, both JAVA and the bandwidth, was still evolving. LOTUS Esuite lasted a little longer but was recently dropped precisely because it too was still to fat and choked the bandwidth."

"Second, Microsoft has a dilemma, according to some of the reports I read across the Internet, the company plans to use the Office 2000 server extensions. That's going to be a problem as these will raise the price of the software and introduce all hassles of licensing with MS."

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