Linked by Thom Holwerda on Sat 3rd Nov 2012 01:11 UTC, submitted by Panajev
Apple "Earlier this week Apple fired Scott Forstall, the architect of its iOS platform, and handed his duties over to the company's chief industrial designer, Jonathan Ive. Ive and Forstall had an infamously chilly working relationship, and one of their biggest disagreements was over the role of so-called 'skeuomorphic' design in Apple's products. Forstall, like his mentor Steve Jobs, favored it; Ive disliked it. To many observers, Forstall's forced exit looks like a vindication of Ive's stance. But if he wants to continue Apple's enviable trend of innovation, he'd be a fool to throw the baby of skeuomorphism out with Forstall's bathwater." Hoped for a thorough article on the benefits of skeuomorphism - got the age-old and intrinsically invalid excuse 'because it sells'. Windows isn't he best desktop operating system because it sells so well. Lady Gaga isn't the best artist because she sells a lot of records. This argument is never valid, has zero value, and adds nothing to what should be an interesting discussion.
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MS certainly played dirty (OTOH I wonder how many companies wouldn't, in such position?) - but even without that, Windows would quite possibly still get the market position it enjoys ...simply because it was the best choice - or rather the least bad out of all more or less meh options, at the time when it really mattered.

When Windows got big, with 3.x & 95, there was hardly any alternative - Macs were too limited and expensive, RISC OS machines similar, Amigas even more limited & from a failing company & their "productive" side never really grabbed people's attention, Atari TOS, GEOS, or GEM even more so, OS/2 too demanding on hardware and with the underlying goal of returning to IBM the control over the PC (so of course the clone makers didn't go along, rebelled Gang of Nine style, chose MS), NeXT self-exiled into the "premium" market & ported too late to PCs, as BeOS will do half a decade later (way too late), Linux in its cradle and DEs for X not yet viable for general consumption.

For better or worse, picking up Windows was sensible - network effects and economies of scale did the rest.
That was the case also in places where people rarely paid for Windows, when they chose to pirate it, when they still choose that... (or grab a MSDNAA license, at best)

Edited 2012-11-03 05:00 UTC

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