Re: [dev] [st] windows port?

From: Charlie Kester <>
Date: Thu, 11 Apr 2013 10:47:30 -0700

On 04/11/2013 09:41, Max DeLiso wrote:
> If windows was totally unusable would it have succeeded in the way that it
> has? Windows is certainly not ideal in any sense but you can't deny its
> ongoing success commercially.

Windows (and before it, DOS) was never an example of well-designed
software. Its success had nothing to do with its technical merits.

Rob Landley has given some talks recently, in which he points out how
the bandwagon or snowball effect has elevated and locked in the leaders
in various technological niches. DOS/Windows succeeded simply because
people wanted to use what everyone else was using.

In the late 80's/early 90's:

CP/M had reached a dead end.

The Unix world was fragmented and still seen as aimed at "big iron" or
high-end workstations. It often required expensive license fees.

Linux and PC-BSD were either not invented yet or still too rough around
the edges to appeal to the mass market. By the time they were ready
enough, Microsoft had already built an insurmountable lead.

Apple and Amiga had products for personal use, but unlike the PC, they
weren't aimed at the office or business user.

DOS/Windows won the business market for personal computing almost by
default, and Microsoft used that advantage to build their empire.

People forget how much enthusiasm there was for DOS/Windows back in the
early days. It was the Revolution, the People's Computer, striking a
blow against big iron and the IT priesthood. There was a thriving
shareware community...
Received on Thu Apr 11 2013 - 19:47:30 CEST

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