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   Re: [xml-dev] Good Times Ahead for "Sharecroppers"? (Was: [OT] TimBray o

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On Mon, 14 Jul 2003 AndrewWatt2000@aol.com wrote:

> It seems to me that Tim misses an important point that Microsoft, and other 
> proprietary vendors **need** what Tim refers to as sharecroppers.

Yes, but...

> It follows, therefore, that MS sharecroppers ... and sharecroppers of other 
> corporates .... are in a healthier position than, perhaps, they have ever been. 
> Why? Because there is some ... lots of? .... new land out there to go to if 
> the corporate "landowner" becomes too demanding.

Two Words: Proprietary Extensions
Two and a half more:  Vendor Lock-In

Microsoft (and numerous other vendors - I am not just picking on them)  
has _ALWAYS_ played the standards game when behind, and proprietary
extensions when ahead. There is a _reason_ web browser releases slowed
from every 6 months to every 2 years and why Microsoft has shown little
interest in implementing _new_ XML related standards (or even in bringing
their browser into strict compliance with the existing standards) in the
last year. They don't have to - they are the industry leader by a
substantial margin as a consequence of their uncontested monopoly on the
desktop and have no need to enhance their customer's ability to 'switch'
to competing vendors.

Sharecroppers _remain_ sharecroppers because, just like a 'company town',
the system is deliberately rigged to make it nearly impossible to escape.  
Wealth accumulates with _owners_ of property - not _renters_.

Benjamin Franz

"If the code and the comments disagree, then both are probably wrong."
                                        -- Norm Schryer, Bell Labs 


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