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26 August 1998

My oh my. Investigators have unearthed internal Microsoft memos that suggest that Microsoft's Windows 3.1 beta could detect competing "alien operating systems" like DR-DOS and then deliver fake error messages. Memos even suggest that Microsoft execs considered actually causing Windows to malfunction with anything but Microsoft DOS.

A Forbes article talks about researches at Hewlett Packard who developed a workstation made from defective chips (a la Young Frankenstein) which compensates for the defects with software. It essentially identifies and routes around problems using reduntant components. The article posits that we may be able to use this technology to keep Moore's law going strong - As processors become too packed with transistors and too expensive to produce, we'll just use lower quality ones.

It's been clear that Intel is putting a lot of effort into certain kinds of software technology, like voice recognition. The reason is simple - as processors become more powerful, most productivity applications do not require the latest and greatest screamer from Intel. If new, more processor hungry apps proliferate, then Intel stays on top. Well, the US Government is now probing allegations that Microsoft has threatened Intel to keep it out of the software world.


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