Re: Computer Economics Was: Re: Illth

From: John Conover <>
Subject: Re: Computer Economics Was: Re: Illth
Date: 8 Aug 1999 05:28:33 -0000

James A. Donald writes:
> What you get for $10000 is considerably inferior to what you get for
> free, but what you get for free is not that hot either  You can get a
> free linux, and get some help from various people, and get stuff that
> sometimes will not run and sometimes cannot be installed.
> The red hat video card probe hangs my system.  There is no unix
> software to drive my usb scanner or by IDE CDROM writer, though that
> is pretty damned good compared to the device drivers for $10000 unix.
> Believe it or not, the reason Microsoft stomps all over the big unix
> companies is that Microsoft simply treats the customer better.
> In short, Microsoft earned that irritating "monopoly" fair and square.

Actually, looking at for the 10-Q's,
Unix has had a very good year-and has for 4 years running, with growth
rates that have surpassed the PC industry, (both Linux and FreeBSD
have done even better in growth rates, but their free, so we won't
count them-just to keep it apples and apples.)

The average ASP of commercial Unix servers these days are in parity
with the PC servers, ($6.2K vs. $5.6K.)

Granted, MS owns the glass that secretaries look through.

However, if you take the GR of Intel, and MS, and add them together,
it is on par with one division of one company selling
mainframes-IBM. (It was a very good year for AS/400s, too.) MS became
the largest software supplier in the world last year, (with just under
10% of the TAM,) kicking IBM out of first place, (which it may take
back this year-its going to be close.)

MS's GR is, also, less than HP's printer division, when broken out
separately, (HP is the largest supplier of Unix systems, BTW.)

Computing is a big place, isn't it.


BTW, other interesting demographics of the computer market are that in
servers, NT has 34%, Linux 17%, (up from zero 18 months ago, growing
at 220% annual rate.) However, on the desktop, Linux has only 2%, the
rest is MS. The largest selling word processor in Europe last year was
StarOffice, and 1997 was the first year the PC out sold the Amiga in
Europe. Ref. IDC.


John Conover,,

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