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LinuxPlanet: .comment: Freebies, Buzzwords, and Goofy Stuff [PC Expo]

Jun 28, 2000, 16:18 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Dennis E. Powell)

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"PC Expo was where we got the hint that it was beginning, and PC Expo may be the place where we're now receiving the hint that it's ending. The vast computer and software show was marked in 1992 by campaign-style buttons that identified the wearer as someone who demanded Windows preloaded on his or her next machine (as opposed to Next machine, which was also on display then). It was the beginning of the preload steamroller that came to guarantee that if you owned a computer, you owned Windows, like it or not. This year there aren't any buttons. Microsoft has its customary big display, but much of what seems to be the Microsoft area is instead made up of companies that do business with Microsoft, sticking tight like remoras on a shark. (A marine biologist friend tells me that partially digested remoras are often found in the stomachs of sharks.)"

"And fealty to Microsoft is the exception at PC Expo this year. Vendors are either ready to provide details about their products' compatability with Linux or very defensive about incompatability. Some are actually apologetic about Windows preloads. Linux Mall has a big display of things for sale, and the cash register kachings regularly. Red Hat has a nice display, also on the main floor. IBM is demonstrating its ViaVoice for Linux..."

"But as any serious, long-term PC Expo junkie knows, the show is especially interesting for its freebies, buzzwords, and goofy stuff, with perhaps a small bittersweet turn--the things you hoped to see introduced that weren't. So I shall now open my bulging canvas briefcase, provided by IBM at the OS/2 Warp 3 rollout years ago and used only at PC Expo, and make three piles."

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