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  #1  
Old 2006-12-18, 16:30
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Lightbulb Microsoft, Where do they want to go today?

Microsoft Windows.

I thought Id share my view of the future of Windows, and seek your philosophies on its future.

As we all know, they have a large market share or monopoly. People are familar with it, people don't like change. The key here is that Linux and Mac systems are too much of a learning curve for most users to transition into, thus they stay with what their familar and comfortable with.

Windows is highly priced, this is one of the key factors that contributes to its piracy, if it was 1/10 of the price it was at, most people would fork out the cash to buy it, but when you're fronted with illegit free releases, the time to d/l vs cash ratio outweighs the benefit to fork with those big notes in your wallet. Its greed from Microsoft's pov that drives its issue of piracy.

Legally, MS can't do shit with its illegit audience as a whole, sure they can squish a single ant in a swarm in a law suit, scare tactics, and fix the activation flaws with patches but where theres a demand, there will be supply, and that includes backyard hackers creating new cracks. Much the same, is the laws that control what MS can and can't do with non geniune releases, they can't threaten you that you'll loose your personal data, or make your PC inoperable if your found to have a copy, all they can do is limit functionality of the UI, webbrowser, nothing more. This is something which Im sure will still put them in the legal blender for its new flavour of anti-piracy techniques.

Wheres it all headed?

Well, theres a demand of alternatives in all lifes of software, look at all these new open source code innovations replacing Media Player (ie. VLC), Internet Explorer (ie. Opera/Firefox), Outlook (ie. Thunderbird) and Office (OpenOffice). Over the last 5 years we have seen a massive spawn of open source projects allowing the sharing of knowledge to contribute to a ever improving project idea that outgrows the benefits of its market competitors.

Windows will be the same, but Windows is a big beast, its not just a simple a-b-c program, theres a lot of layers and some of them are too complex for even the advanced programmer, programming to manage the system at its low level is almost a forgotten task with the invent of Plug 'n' Play style of programming built upon a operating system's API.

But good news is theres been many different projects brewing over the years, which are constantly gaining more of a promising glint of light. Free projects like Wine, the Windows portal for linux, Dosbox, the low-level dos emulator, ReactOS a free standalone Windows compatible OS (still buggy atm).

Microsofts biggest competitor is the sharing of knowledge, something that they cant control, and their greedy edge will create the drive to eventually produce a hybrid open-source compatible operating system that will promote a similar feel, a nil cost and a easy transition that will eventually collapse the grasp Microsoft holds over its monopoly.

I find it interesting to think, that one day, software, a bunch of electronic signals arranged in a particular pattern, will be near to obsoleted in a market that will refuse to pay for it, ironically not because of piracy.
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  #2  
Old 2006-12-18, 16:41
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Microsoft is greedy and evil, blah blah blah.

Personally, there is no learning curve about it - every time I work with a Mac system, it is more than apparent that it is shite (imho), things seem backwards from standard logic and it isn't intuitive. And Mac users will defend them like it was the holy idol of their religion - resorting to insults and such simply because you refuse to accept their (crappy) choice. Of course, this is all my opinion, but I think misery loves company.

Piracy, in all of its forms, is still illegal. Windows is still the premier operating system and most desirable one as well, and its pirated because of that. Sure, some of these homebrews may be intriguing, but until they achieve the functionality and conventionality that Windows has, they'll still be the minority homebrew that only computer geeks and tech head will use. The real world runs on Windows (mostly).

That being said, I know my friend is huge on Linux, and good for them. It's good that Microsoft isn't the only hat in the ring. But again, they still have ways to go before chipping away at the Microsoft monolith.

My apologies for being abrasive, I've simply grown tired of all the Microsoft/Wal-Mart/etc. bashing, the glorification and rationalization of piracy, and the idolization of open-source when much work is still to be done on that front.
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  #3  
Old 2006-12-18, 16:55
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Double-J
My apologies for being abrasive, I've simply grown tired of all the Microsoft/Wal-Mart/etc. bashing, the glorification and rationalization of piracy, and the idolization of open-source when much work is still to be done on that front.
This is a classic! No-one understands that sometimes, some people can only afford the open-source alternatives, because the commercial products are simply over-priced.

And yes, Microsoft Corp. IS greedy. They get billons of US$ per year, but yet they talk, as if the few thousand US$ the lose because of the piracy, were a big loss.

BTW, for your information, most of the Microsoft products, including Internet Explorer, were NOT invented by Microsoft - they were just products of other companis, for which Microsoft acquires full licenses of. Nice way of going, really.

So, one day, when all the open-source alternatives will be equal or even better than the commercial products functionality-wise, the big company (Microsoft, Adobe, Corel, etc.) will face the ultimate fate of destruction.
I'm sorry, but that's the way it is.
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  #4  
Old 2006-12-18, 17:02
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OS' lack the "Open Office" of text editors, a pack that is relatively small and versatile, and, to tell the truth Linux systems, or any other systems are not like that. THey require too much setting up for an average user, trying to run a windows app is sick, the way HDD space is divided is unclear, it's full of some stupid managers, finding your apps' calatogue is also hellishly stupid. Untill the alternative system is exactly like windows, with a bigger versatility, "one click" usefulness, wich would be almsot no setting up, everything works from the start is clear and visible etc.

And don't tell me Linux is like that, becosue it's not, not for the average user anyway.

I think the way would be for windows to sell a license, prepare a versatile system core pack, for companies to create their own release of the system, there would still be a standard in file types, but they could be optimized, have different GUIs, different features, and be cheaper thanks to the competition on the market, Microsoft would just take 2-5% of every sold copy and sit and watch how others do the work, from time to time they would jsut make an update to the core pack, and make a release of their own, using the best features of the independent releases.

And about the piracy, yes, msot people can't afford the software, and it's not like 10% of people, but probably more then 60-70% of people worldwide can't afford software, in here the % of people who CAN afford it is probably not bigger then 5% of all the users. There is no competition on the OS market, the software is overpriced, a WIndows system costs more than a good Wacom Tablet, or a good GPU - wic is insane. If you're watching this from a perspective of a person who can afford it, you're point of view is changed by the fact you have it, and for many people, it's a real problem, here, the priced of a windows is almost as big as the lowest pay is...?! And this is ridicculus.
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  #5  
Old 2006-12-18, 17:48
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deja vu?

Quote:
The key here is that Linux and Mac systems are too much of a learning curve for most users to transition into, thus they stay with what their familar and comfortable with.
Nah. The problem is that people will need to learn things. People can hardly work with MS Windows in the first place. The amouth of effort they need to switch to Linux or MacOSX is minimal. Linux being the easiest since the most used window systems are more similar to Windows than MacOSX is.

Also people don't choose what OS they want to use. Windows pretty much always comes preloaded with the system. And they simply stick with that.
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  #6  
Old 2006-12-18, 21:16
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How much is that lowest end version of Vista? The one that will apparently to Microsoft..... will prevent piracy?
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  #7  
Old 2006-12-18, 22:59
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Originally Posted by El_Muerte View Post


Nah. The problem is that people will need to learn things.
Nah. The problem is people like to use programs that work, and not have to fuck around with compatibility issues with Macs and Linux (etc.).

The vast majority of software is designed for Windows.
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  #8  
Old 2006-12-18, 23:06
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Double-J View Post
Nah. The problem is people like to use programs that work, and not have to fuck around with compatibility issues with Macs and Linux (etc.).

The vast majority of software is designed for Windows.
Just ask what the vast majority of home PC users use. It's usually not much more than:
  • Instant Messager
  • Internet Browser
  • Very basic text processor (MS Word is an overkill for these users)
  • Email client
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  #9  
Old 2006-12-18, 23:10
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Originally Posted by OBrasilo View Post
This is a classic! No-one understands that sometimes, some people can only afford the open-source alternatives, because the commercial products are simply over-priced.
What, you mean like the hax0rs in their basements who spend $1000's on Alienware PC's but then rip off a copy of Windows because they "can't afford it?"

If you can afford a computer in today's market - which have decent, usable ones under $300 USD, then you can afford the copy of Windows which is likely built-in.

I mean, again, you're not going to die if you don't have a computer. Saying its too expensive...it's a luxury item, not a necessity. Owning your own computer isn't a God-given right.

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Originally Posted by OBrasilo View Post
And yes, Microsoft Corp. IS greedy. They get billons of US$ per year, but yet they talk, as if the few thousand US$ the lose because of the piracy, were a big loss.
So basically, because they make so much money, it renders criminal acts null and void?

I don't buy that (hah! pun) for a second.

It's like saying that there are so many people born every year, that we shouldn't prosecute murderers, because, after all, it isn't a big loss in the numerical column.

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Originally Posted by OBrasilo View Post
BTW, for your information, most of the Microsoft products, including Internet Explorer, were NOT invented by Microsoft - they were just products of other companis, for which Microsoft acquires full licenses of. Nice way of going, really.
Ok. Congrats. It's a basic economic principal called horizontal integration - buying out your competitors and integrating them into your fold.

And Microsoft was a small company too, at one time.



Quote:
Originally Posted by Obrasilo
So, one day, when all the open-source alternatives will be equal or even better than the commercial products functionality-wise, the big company (Microsoft, Adobe, Corel, etc.) will face the ultimate fate of destruction.
I'm sorry, but that's the way it is.
A pretty bold prediction. However, the resources in the hands of the private sector will largely prevent this, as advertising and previous market share/control.

As long as there are profits to be made, your assumption cannot prove true.
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  #10  
Old 2006-12-18, 23:12
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Originally Posted by El_Muerte View Post
Just ask what the vast majority of home PC users use. It's usually not much more than:
  • Instant Messager
  • Internet Browser
  • Very basic text processor (MS Word is an overkill for these users)
  • Email client
Okay. And still...why would people want to screw around trying to get these programs to work with a homebrew when they can get full support from Microsoft and such. If they can barely work these programs ("overkill" as you've said), do you think they'd be able to set up a homebrew system?
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Old 2006-12-18, 23:23
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Originally Posted by Double-J View Post
Okay. And still...why would people want to screw around trying to get these programs to work with a homebrew when they can get full support from Microsoft and such. If they can barely work these programs ("overkill" as you've said), do you think they'd be able to set up a homebrew system?
Oh come on, every linux distribution works out of the box with complete with software in that list. Nothing to set up. Get a Ubuntu live CD or Knoppix, boot the computer and click the "install" link on the desktop (or just keep running the live CD without installing an OS). Within 15 minutes you will have a fully working Linux bases system without having to answer any difficult questions. Even Windows Vista isn't that easy to install.

Also people don't get full support from Microsoft. In fact, they get no support from microsoft. You have to pay additionally for support from Microsoft. You usually get a bit of support from the computer retailer (because they are required by law).
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Old 2006-12-18, 23:33
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Linux comes in a box? How far we have progressed.

And okay, you're right, Microsoft doesn't give support, I was mistaken, it is the PC manufacturer (for phone calls and such). Microsoft does offer their help and support website though. I admit paying for customer service is pretty laughable. But who are you going to contact when you have a Linux problem? One of the myriad of homebrew pages? IRC channels? Sounds pretty complicated for people, who you claim Microsoft Word is an overkill task for, to try and get onto an IRC chat.

Either way, it's irrelevant - because the vast majority of people aren't going to waste time with a homebrew - they want something that they know will work, and will get them running. Microsoft is that option, for the foreseeable future.
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Old 2006-12-18, 23:53
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Originally Posted by Double-J View Post
If you can afford a computer in today's market - which have decent, usable ones under $300 USD, then you can afford the copy of Windows which is likely built-in.
I don't know about you, but buying a whole PC at one time as an alien world for me, never done that and don't know enyone who did. First thing I had was a second hand Amiga, then sold it for 600 PLN(The price of a windows), bought some PC stuff, my first PC didn't even had a hard drive(486dx66), and then I subsequently sold my old parts at the "computer fair", collected some more money and bought some new every few years - and that's a common practice around here, and that's how most of the world works, you can afford a new part every few years.
If you don't know of that reality you are fortunate.

A PC is not a luxury item, not even charity organisations treat it as such, it's among the essentials, like a bed, three chairs, cuttlery, a radio or a TV a fridge and a stove - if you have debts, theese are the stuff the "collector" can't take away from you, there are also cult items amongst them. Culture is essential to humans, there's a saying to that: "not by bread alone a human lives".

Most of the countries have in their constitution, that keeping one away from the culture is unaccaptable, and books, music, connection to internet are amongst them.

There is no clear division between good or bad in this case, becouse the huge prices force people to take, often morally disputable, actions to take something to wich they have the rights to, but no means of aquiring(Mainly becouse of their government - but that's a whole different economical issue).

Now, saying someone is a gready bastard becouse he tells you how much he wants is stupid, becouse he has every right to dictate a price. Now, the problem lies in a different aspect of the whoel deal, wich is: lack of competition on the market, if there was any good competition, we would have lower prices with a better quality of service, since in most parts of the world there is non, and the governments have a crappy policy, people have no money and resort to drastic measures. I'd like to remind you, that for isntance there is no Macintosh in central and eastern europe, everything you want to buy wich is a mac, costs even 60% more then in the western europe and the US, same for Wacom, and a host of other companies. The resulting computer piracy is not a good thing, but still it is not the "sickness", but a symptome of a larger deal, wich are economical problems.
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  #14  
Old 2006-12-19, 00:05
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I don't know about you, but buying a whole PC at one time as an alien world for me, never done that and don't know enyone who did.
In stark contrast, I only know of two people (both computer science majors) who have built their own PC's - everyone else I talk to, companies I've worked for, etc. has always bought a prefab, largely from either Dell, HP, or Gateway.

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Originally Posted by Jasiek View Post
If you don't know of that reality you are fortunate.
Quite the opposite, really, my family made do with a Windows 95 166mHz system for many years until our 2002 upgrade to an XP system.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jasiek View Post
A PC is not a luxury item, not even charity organisations treat it as such, it's among the essentials, like a bed, three chairs, cuttlery, a radio or a TV a fridge and a stove - if you have debts, theese are the stuff the "collector" can't take away from you, there are also cult items amongst them. Culture is essential to humans, there's a saying to that: "not by bread alone a human lives".
A PC is a luxury item - it's not vital, you won't die without it. It is, by definition, a privilege, just like an auto or a big screen TV.

You can get through this world without owning your own PC - libraries and other public locations offer free PC use, at least in my area of the United States.

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Most of the countries have in their constitution, that keeping one away from the culture is unaccaptable, and books, music, connection to internet are amongst them.
More generally, I think it would fall under the Lockean values of life, liberty and happiness. Suffice to say however that I find it particularly laughable that the right to an internet connection would be a serious point of contention for any bill of rights, at least in a free society, since most commerce like that is either totally unregulated or very lightly regulated (as opposed to say, China or North Korea).

I simply cannot see how anyone is or could argue that they are entitled to be connected to the internet.
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Old 2006-12-19, 00:24
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I simply cannot see how anyone is or could argue that they are entitled to be connected to the internet.
It means that preventing you from being connected to it/using it is against your rights.
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Old 2006-12-19, 10:06
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Linux comes in a box? How far we have progressed.
Linux came in boxes ever since RedHat 1

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Originally Posted by Double-J View Post
And okay, you're right, Microsoft doesn't give support, I was mistaken, it is the PC manufacturer (for phone calls and such). Microsoft does offer their help and support website though. I admit paying for customer service is pretty laughable. But who are you going to contact when you have a Linux problem? One of the myriad of homebrew pages? IRC channels? Sounds pretty complicated for people, who you claim Microsoft Word is an overkill task for, to try and get onto an IRC chat.
Usually the support channels of the distribution provider (can be phone support or online support) or community support channels (mainly irc, forums and newsgroups). But it sort of depends on your support contract (ofcourse that's mainly for companies; home users hardly ever buy support contracts).

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Originally Posted by Double-J View Post
Either way, it's irrelevant - because the vast majority of people aren't going to waste time with a homebrew - they want something that they know will work, and will get them running. Microsoft is that option, for the foreseeable future.
Linux != homebrew. It's not 1996 anymore.
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  #17  
Old 2006-12-19, 14:38
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Well damn! I guess I'm just dying to see Microsoft's profits just tumble into bankruptcy with all this open-source goodness.

Don't expect me to sell my shares anytime soon, though.
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  #18  
Old 2006-12-19, 22:39
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The argument of 'ohh they're making billions, they shouldn't complain about the piracy losses' is stupid.
it doesn't matter how much money you earn, no one should accept it when someone steals from em......
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Old 2006-12-19, 22:44
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well... do felons have the moral right to complain when they have been subject to felony?
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  #20  
Old 2006-12-20, 02:40
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well... do felons have the moral right to complain when they have been subject to felony?
Add a [/rationalization] tag for your post there.

Stealing is stealing. Microsoft is a private entity that sells its goods on the international market. When it is pirated, it is a crime, despite the rampant irreverence and rationalization of this criminal act.
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Old 2006-12-20, 09:41
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Copyright infringement is not stealing.

Piracy is bad. Period. But MS is not the one in their right to complain about loss of income due to piracy. Or at least, they do not have the right to use that excuse to cripple their customers even more.
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Old 2006-12-20, 11:20
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There's this massive mistake going on here, becouse there is no loss of income, there is only lack of income wich are a completely different thing, you'd have to be really pompous, to think, that if you'd lock away all the "pirates" people would automatically start buying software they can't afford in any way. No, they would not, msot of them know about it only becouse they could get it for free(or by paying the fraction of the original price to a "pirate"), if Microsoft would get this into their thick skulls, they might earn even more money, by doing something for those people, like, a very cheap version of windows, or as I said earlier, realesing a windows: code version that would be the core of the system, for anyone to build a new system on it, and he would be entitled to give 5% of his income from every sold copy to microsoft. Or, the best way would be to legalize piracy and free copying, and then tax it with a 20% copy tax, just like it is done with prostitution, or drugs in many countries - legalization + taxation is the only real thing they can do to stop it, and increase their income from the sector of people who cannot afford their products. Of course you don't get a warranty then, no support from microsoft, no benefits, nothing, only a copy of the system for having wich you won't be prosecuted. Many people would pay a 20%(If not even a 100% tax cnsidering the price of a pirated copy) tax for a pirated copy gladly.

JJ, you can't possibly expect for people not to use computers, becouse they're not essential to not dying... Humans are not animals, and a computer is a part of the modern culture, not to mention the bigger job possibilities, or pursuing your talents in the fields of graphics, coding etc. You can't just expect people to not follow their dream becouse they can't afford it, they can buy a computer legally, by buying second hand parts, part by part that is. So if they can afford that in time, and they only can't afford the OS - there's something awfully wrong going on in there...
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Last edited by Jasiek; 2006-12-20 at 11:25.
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  #23  
Old 2006-12-20, 14:07
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Copyright infringement is not stealing.
As a part of academia, I'm pretty sure plagiarism is stealing. Unless its totally unintentional (which in 99% of the cases it isn't), you're stealing someone else's work purposefully, without giving them credit.

Copyright infringement is the same way - if you're using someone's intellectual property that they have put on the market at a designated price, and you obtain it though illegal or quasi-legal means (ala P2P), then its stealing.

Quote:
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But MS is not the one in their right to complain about loss of income due to piracy.
But you're rationalizing this by equating the right to complain with how much profit is made. If someone steals a rich man's diamonds, is that not a crime? Doesn't he have just as much legal right to complain as the average man?

Piracy is wrong, and while Microsoft may be boneheaded in some areas, when people are stealing their software, then they have every right to complain and attempt to stop and circumvent this procedure in the future, as well as prosecute violators to the fullest extent of the law.
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  #24  
Old 2006-12-20, 14:13
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JJ, you can't possibly expect for people not to use computers, becouse they're not essential to not dying... Humans are not animals, and a computer is a part of the modern culture, not to mention the bigger job possibilities, or pursuing your talents in the fields of graphics, coding etc. You can't just expect people to not follow their dream becouse they can't afford it, they can buy a computer legally, by buying second hand parts, part by part that is. So if they can afford that in time, and they only can't afford the OS - there's something awfully wrong going on in there...
Many Americans over the age of 40 are unable to use computers, yet they still are productive members of society.

Hence, jobs in coding and graphics are irrelevant, since they have no idea what it is good for, and wouldn't understand the process anyways. And if they did want to pursue such dreams, which is highly unlikely, the institution where they would learn would take measures to bring up their level of competency.

Furthermore, if they can afford the parts but not the OS, why don't they use all of these free OS's that have been touted in this thread? Why resort to stealing when legal options exist?
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Old 2006-12-20, 14:35
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Jasiek Jasiek is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Double-J View Post
Many Americans over the age of 40 are unable to use computers, yet they still are productive members of society.

Hence, jobs in coding and graphics are irrelevant, since they have no idea what it is good for, and wouldn't understand the process anyways. And if they did want to pursue such dreams, which is highly unlikely, the institution where they would learn would take measures to bring up their level of competency.

Furthermore, if they can afford the parts but not the OS, why don't they use all of these free OS's that have been touted in this thread? Why resort to stealing when legal options exist?
Free OS's are hardly an alternative(Maybe some people can claim they are, but for an average user they're a high-end thing, not somehting you would start with). I find your views higly inhumane, too much removed and distanced from the real situation, it's not about the "society" and "productivness", becouse that's simple BS, you can't reduce people to values like that, they are individuals who's existence is not based on being "a cog in the great machine of society" but to pursue individual goals - that's what democracy and capitalism are based on.

"Institution" ? Seriously, do you live in a country where the school gives a damn about your individual talents? Probably more then 70% of worlds schools(Including where I live), if not even more, don't give a damn on what you can do and cannot and it all comes down to the schools and the ministrys program. There is no place for individual work, your own work on developing it is the only way. And no one of either the "institution" or the government will help you on the way becouse they don't give a damn, or even if they do, they do not have the resources to provide the needed equipment. It's a totally different schooling system, in wich school has only one function wich is to teach you accordingly to a certain program, all your talents are irrelevant to the process of education and you have to pursue them individually with your own resources.

I can agree that if they've never met with the technology the talent may never surface, but there is always a fascination wich they might pursue. Many people when given the chance show unusual talents, and that, using your figure of speach will contribute much more to the society and it's development, then if they remained simple workers(The society gains much more when the individual pursues individual goals then when it tries to "fit in").

Now this does not justify piracy, but piracy is a response of the "market" to the "demand", if there was no demand, there would be no piracy, on how to solve that I have already presented my views. Untill people are wealthy enough to afford the software, piracy will always exist, the only way of winning over it is to legalize and tax it, until the economical situation changes so that it is more comfortable to own legal software.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Double-J View Post
If someone steals a rich man's diamonds, is that not a crime? Doesn't he have just as much legal right to complain as the average man?
It is a crime, but this is not the case, LACK OF PROFIT is not LOSS OF PROFIT, the demand on the services is only amongst the people who cannot afford legal software, so if there was no piracy they wouldn't ever buy it, never. Thus the company would loose the bigger amount of users. Not to mention how much computer sales would go down in poorer countries. You have to accept the fact that it exists, and pushing it further and further underground will only make it more organised, more wild and uncontrollable, like in the times of prohibition in the US. Legalizion + taxation is the only answer.
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Last edited by Jasiek; 2006-12-20 at 14:44.
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