Re: "Open XML" et al... Blech... Re: Microsoft buys
If there was no jackpot, could any party have justified working so hard and successfully to popularise a single standard? It's mostly a marketing task. The network effects of interoperability of documents and transferability of skills only benefit MS because they benefit users - isn't some reward reasonable for delivering that? Of course, another way to create a standard is by government mandate (ie. as for water/gas/elec utilities) - but I'm not sure governments are ideal in this area, for developing new software... just some thoughts Brendan On 08/09/2007, Michael Kay <mike@s...> wrote: > > > > I'm unsure about a 'natural tendency' to converge on a single > > software product, but individuals are often constrained by IT > > policies. > > Ken, Everything you say about the history of how MS Office came to beat its > competitors is true, and it's an excellent analysis. But in other markets > you can be the dominant player with 30% of the market; with software > products such as Windows and Office, once you're in the lead or perceived as > being in the lead, there's a tendency for that 30% to become 90% because > even the people who prefer a different product find that it's easier to > follow the crowd rather than following their own preferences - and that's > all to do with interoperability of documents and transferability of skills. > > It's true that the choice is sometimes at the corporate level and sometimes > at the personal level, but it amounts to the same thing: for every person > who chose MS Office because they liked it, there are four or five who use it > because it's easiest to use the same as everyone else. That's what's makes > it a natural monopoly, almost like public water supply. And in other areas > where there are natural monopolies, we don't allow the owner of that > monopoly to set arbitrary prices and make $40bn profits on $50bn of > turnover. > > Of course free enterprise is a good thing and governments shouldn't > interfere. But if governments didn't interfere then there wouldn't be any > copyright legislation and MS wouldn't be making any profit at all. MS are > wealthy because we, as citizens, have elected governments who have given MS > a license to print money. I'm not saying MS didn't make some good decisions > that led to them winning the jackpot - but the jackpot shouldn't be there to > win. > > Michael Kay > http://www.saxonica.com/ > > > _______________________________________________________________________ > > XML-DEV is a publicly archived, unmoderated list hosted by OASIS > to support XML implementation and development. To minimize > spam in the archives, you must subscribe before posting. > > [Un]Subscribe/change address: http://www.oasis-open.org/mlmanage/ > Or unsubscribe: xml-dev-unsubscribe@l... > subscribe: xml-dev-subscribe@l... > List archive: http://lists.xml.org/archives/xml-dev/ > List Guidelines: http://www.oasis-open.org/maillists/guidelines.php > >
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