Reply from Bill Gates
Thursday, October 27, 1994 by Dave Winer.
Dave - your mail is stimulating because the Internet is a very important "external" development but why the demagoguery?
Marvel is not a bet the company thing. Nothing I said at Agenda could have been misinterpreted to suggest it. We haven't decided exactly what we are going do and that's why we haven't announced anything.
I am not sure this industry gets its best discussion when it takes a serious issue and turn it into an attack on one person complete with insults. Perhaps you have read some of the more extreme things written about me. In terms of your own work with Microsoft and me personally do you feel wronged in some way? I think you have done some great stuff for the Mac and I hope you continue to do more.
The Internet is a great phenomena. I dont see how the emergence of more information content on a network can be a bad thing for the personal computer industry. Will it cause less personal computers to sell? I think quite the opposite. Less copies of Flight Simulator or Encarta?
All sorts of things come along from outside the PC industry to fuel our growth - Color LCDs, Cheap disks, CD-ROM technology, Tcp/IP, UNIX, ATM... These things are wonderful and make the industry fun and the Internet is certainly one of them.
I don't know if online people will make much money. I know if they view themselves as competing with the Internet they will not. Marvel is an exciting project and I hope we do well with it but like most Microsoft projects we will have to learn from the marketplace. Sometimes we do well and sometimes we don't.
What do you think we or others should be doing more to embrace the Internet? Have you tried Windows 95 on the Internet or used our WEB content or seen the WEB support in Word. We want to do our best on all of this and welcome additional ideas. We have included everything for an Internet server in NT with its resource kit and are doing a lot of work with k-12 schools to get them hooked up to the internet.
I was noticing your comment about Windows'95 in the context of a Mac discussion.
Microsoft has been supportive of the Mac from day 1. We were the only company shipping software with the original machine. Other large developers have humiliated the Mac thru their statements or by dropping support in some cases many times. Over the last few years we have introduced more new titles for the Mac than any other company. This is despite Apple suing us and discriminating against us in disclosing information to our applications groups who signed unique personal non-disclosure agreements. One interesting thing I would be glad to send you a copy of are the letters I sent to Apple in 1984 and 1985 asking them to license the Mac and giving them ideas about who to work with. Amazingly Apple got mad at us for even suggesting this.
Microsoft makes more money when a Mac is sold than when a Windows machine is sold even when you account for the systems software difference. The other ISVs just haven't done enough on the Mac. Despite this economic interest which is pro-Mac I think there should be objective comparisons made.
You say that Windows 95 will require a lot more hardware. I have been using Windows 95 for months and it runs faster with the same memory than previous generations. I think the Mac can continue to do super well while being honest about what Windows 95 is. Microsoft continues to invest in the Mac because we believe in its future. One thing you might want to look at is take an application on x86 and compare memory working set on powerpc. The only reason I mention this is your comment about people needing more memory.
Thanks for the comments, Bill!