Now that the dust has settled at MWSF on new product announcements and the final shipping date of OS X has been revealed, what has the Monopoly King been up to OS wise? The next version of Windows now under development is code named Whistler. It will more completely integrate the user desktop with the web browser. Whistler will be based on the Windows NT kernel rather than Windows 9x. It will also address security, reliability and stability problems of the past. This will be the first time, a Windows operating system will no longer run a very large number of programs written for MS-DOS and other earlier operating systems. Whistler will also sport the controversial anti-piracy “product activation” which will require activation by phone or internet. When they tried that avenue with MS Office they ran into a hailstorm of abuse from consumers.
More troubling is the recent post on the internet of the code for Whistler. This could open a cesspool of problems for Microsoft. Unauthorized use of the code, among other problems, could mean incompatibility with other software applications. Whistler is expected to be released sometime in 2001. The original date had been April but if MS’s past record is any indication that date will be extended. Thanks to AppleLinks for the referral link (below) to these Whistler screen shots. There are 8 pages of extensive shots showing most areas of the new system.
Personal note: The “watercolour” theme shown in the desktop screen shot is gorgeous. The remaining shots are well laid out and more muted than OS X – in the Windows tradition. Interestingly, Whistler has its classic area too, although it is in reference to folders and the like. Some items such as the Volume Control box look spare although the functions themselves are complete.
My Suggested Release Name: Microsoft Windows Me 2
Warning: the screen shots loaded very slowly on my cable modem but I believe the wait is well worth it.
The Fall of Capitalism – Socialism Rules!
It was bound to happen. It was only a matter of time. But who would have thunk it? A spunky, funky web site called Napster put the screws to the big boys and showed them how it’s done. Forget the lawsuits. The writing is on the wall. Sharing music is in. What law? What is reprehensibility? The mouse-click generation has spoken and they don’t give a damn.
For myself, I was not interested in the Napster controversy as it raged between the poor defenseless conglomerates and pint-sized Napster. Besides, I thought the music available was the type I didn’t like or care about. Metallica who? Noise and more noise. What did I know? It took my son to enlighten his old man. The catalyst was the newly introduced iTunes at MWSF. I had it downloaded from Apple but didn’t quite know what to do with it. Enter a quickie course on Napster and the whole world of shared music and more exploded into my life.
To my surprise and delight the amount and range of music available, if not always quality, was “kid in a candy store stuff” There was something for everyone’s taste. Apple’s iTunes was a great way to organize and catalogue this vast amount of information. The price, though exorbitant, (kidding – it’s free!) was right.
So will Wall Street crumble? Will AOL-Time Warner be brought to their knees? Will Napster be found guilty of directing money away from the music consortium? And more important, will the FBI drag me kicking and screaming for publicly stating any of the above? I’ll let you know. Like many of you I am probably already on one of their lists so . . . “Come and get me coppers, I’m ready for ya!”