TweetFollow Us on Twitter

Feb 96 Crabbs Apple
Volume Number:12
Issue Number:2
Column Tag:Crabb’s Apple

Putting the Moves on the Internet

By Don Crabb

Well, we’ve all wondered, of course. Wondered when Microsoft would get serious about the Internet. Serious about leading its development. Serious about co-opting it as another market in the Microsoft hegemony. Serious about making the Internet and the World Wide Web the The Next Big Thing.

Well, on December 7, 1995 (is it just me, or does that date send shivers up your spine, too?), Microsoft stopped our wondering and let us have it - right between the Web pages, if you will.

To wit, Microsoft has decided to stop fooling around with its Internet science project (Microsoft Network) and to start making “every effort” towards “dominating” the World Wide Web, according to Microsoft co-founder and chairman, William Gates III. As such, Microsoft plans to integrate Internet components that it is developing, as well as those it will license from others, along with communications links, into every Microsoft product, including Windows 95 and NT, Microsoft Office, Visual Basic, Access, and all of its development tools, including SQL Server and other big ticket items. I suppose it will even get into an upcoming release of Microsoft Bob!

The Microsoft Effect

Whether Microsoft can come in and repeat its 800-pound-gorilla act among Internet and Web vendors remains unclear, however, thanks, in no small part, to the current Web hegemony of NetScape Communications Corp. and the heavy Web bandwagon that Apple has successfully pulled down the road for most of 1995.

But just the mere mention of that 800-pounder stomping around the Web caused NetScape’s stock to drop 18 percent in a single day of trading - down $28.75 to $132.50 on December 7. Another Microsoft Net competitor, Netcom On-Line, lost $8.75 to close at $54.75 that day. Ouch, that hurt!

Showing the ripples that the big hairy beast makes no matter where it treads these days, shares of Microsoft partner Spyglass also fell that same day, dropping $14.75 to $95.25 - despite the fact that Microsoft’s new Internet presence will make it heavily dependent on technology that Spyglass is developing for its Internet Explorer browser.

Meanwhile Microsoft’s own stock slid a piddling 12.5 cents to close at $90.50.

Besides partnering more heavily with Spyglass (watch your backs, guys), Microsoft has embraced Sun Microsystem’s Java and JavaScript, a mere week after every other computer company on the planet already declared JavaScript the new lingua franca of the multimedia Web. Apparently, even Microsoft is mortal.

Although we can certainly expect them to figure some way to co-opt Java to their own market aspirations - no matter how “open” Sun insists it will remain (just ask CI Labs how much Microsoft has embraced OpenDoc if you doubt their comfort factor at dealing with standards they don’t own and control) - with Java already being supported by all the other computer bigshots (including Apple), Java’s probably too big for even Uncle Bill to kill. No matter how much he’d like to, since it poses a big threat to the growth of Visual Basic as the choice for Web creation.

In the same set of announcements, Microsoft’s Gates said that “the Internet is the primary driver of all new work we are doing throughout the product line.” Gates also said, “We are hard-core about the Internet.” As if any of us needed to be reminded. I can’t imagine any Mac developer actually believing Microsoft would attempt anything less with the Net than it’s done on the desktop - near-total hegemony.

So, there we have it. Microsoft is going to try to kill NetScape and as many other Net rivals as it can (IBM’s Lotus Notes division, America Online, and Unix companies including Sun Microsystems - no matter what they say about Java). And those it cannot kill, it will try to absorb, like Spyglass.

What does this all mean for Mac developers?

The Mac and The Web and Mr. Bill

Well, make no mistake about it, Microsoft is psyched to chomp up the Net. According to Roger B. McNamee of venture capital firm Integral Capital Partners of Palo Alto, CA, “It was really fun to see Bill Gates so pumped up. He had the same kind of fire in his eyes that I suspect he had 20 years ago when he started the company.

“I imagine he has been wrestling with the approaching maturity of his core business, and wondering what to do with it,” McNamee continued. “The Internet offers the right scale of business opportunity at just the right time.”

But just because Bill and Microsoft are jazzed about devouring the Internet, does that mean they will pull it off? Not by a long shot. The differences between having a good plan and executing it flawlessly have slain bigger dragons than Microsoft. And with the Internet, where part of every successful software vendor’s strategy to date has been free software, Microsoft has little practice.

Still, Microsoft has promised to give away its Internet Explorer and Web server software for most platforms - Unix, Windows 95, Windows NT, and even the Mac OS - in an effort to blow away NetScape and gain the lion’s share of the market.

No matter how successful or unsuccessful Microsoft is at its Web hegemony strategy, Microsoft’s move into the mainstream of the Net and the Web is good news for Mac developers. But only as long as Apple can continue to try to push the Mac OS into all the expanding corners of these markets (by getting us Cyberdog and OpenDoc, and by partnering with NetScape to provide us with a browser construction kit that can easily be incorporated into our own applications). If Apple can maintain its thrust, having Microsoft help out by pushing its own browser onto the Mac OS is a win for us.

The key here, though, is not what Microsoft does, but what Apple does (and what we do with it), as well as its major development partners. With Metrowerks cranking out a Codewarrior for JavaScript, we’ll have one of the core tools we need to accelerate Web product development beyong the HTML and CGI state, but we need others that do not require C and C++ expertise.

For Apple to help us carve out the Web high ground, we need tools that let AppleScripters (borrowing from Cyberdog in some ways?) build Web objects that work with the other tools they use each day, be they multimedia, or database, or spreadsheet, or decision support. In short, we have a real opportunity here, now that Microsoft has joined the Web party (and before they can choke it into proprietary conformity), to spawn a new generation of object tools for Mac users and managers that can be used without programming experience to build sophisticated query and information delivery systems on top of their Web servers, while also being able to build ad hoc looks into other Web sites. But they need the solid Mac tools to do this; HTML and CGI and even JavaScript are at once too limited, too complicated, and too tweaky.

Maybe Apple ought to reconsider Apple Dylan as the core for such a group of Web tools. Maybe SK8 could have a second coming as the engine behind such a tool package. Or maybe even a new version of HyperCard, strengthened with AppleScript, Cyberdog, and OpenDoc, and with an easy way to add Java applets, could fill the bill. I just hope that the bill gets a close examination while we still have this golden opportunity.

 
AAPL
$519.01
Apple Inc.
+1.05
MSFT
$40.40
Microsoft Corpora
+0.65
GOOG
$556.54
Google Inc.
+20.10

MacTech Search:
Community Search:

Software Updates via MacUpdate

PDFpenPro 6.2 - Advanced PDF toolkit for...
PDFpenPro allows users to edit PDF's easily. Add text, images and signatures. Fill out PDF forms. Merge or split PDF documents. Reorder and delete pages. Even correct text and edit graphics! Create... Read more
PDFpen 6.2 - Edit and annotate PDFs with...
PDFpen allows users to easily edit PDF's. Add text, images and signatures. Fill out PDF forms. Merge or split PDF documents. Reorder and delete pages. Even correct text and edit graphics! Features... Read more
Monolingual 1.5.9 - Remove unwanted OS X...
Monolingual is a program for removing unnecesary language resources from OS X, in order to reclaim several hundred megabytes of disk space. It requires a 64-bit capable Intel-based Mac and at least... Read more
Maya 2015 - Professional 3D modeling and...
Maya is an award-winning software and powerful, integrated 3D modeling, animation, visual effects, and rendering solution. Because Maya is based on an open architecture, all your work can be scripted... Read more
Starcraft II: Wings of Liberty 1.1.1.180...
Download the patch by launching the Starcraft II game and downloading it through the Battle.net connection within the app. Starcraft II: Wings of Liberty is a strategy game played in real-time. You... Read more
Sibelius 7.5.0 - Music notation solution...
Sibelius is the world's best-selling music notation software for Mac. It is as intuitive to use as a pen, yet so powerful that it does most things in less than the blink of an eye. The demo includes... Read more
Typinator 5.9 - Speedy and reliable text...
Typinator turbo-charges your typing productivity. Type a little. Typinator does the rest. We've all faced projects that require repetitive typing tasks. With Typinator, you can store commonly used... Read more
MYStuff Pro 2.0.16 - Create inventories...
MYStuff Pro is the most flexible way to create detail-rich inventories for your home or small business. Add items to MYStuff by dragging and dropping existing information, uploading new images, or... Read more
TurboTax 2013.r17.002 - Manage your 2013...
TurboTax guides you through your tax return step by step, does all the calculations, and checks your return for errors and overlooked deductions. It lets you file your return electronically to get... Read more
TrailRunner 3.8.769 - Route planning for...
Note: While the software is classified as freeware, it is actually donationware. Please consider making a donation to help support development. TrailRunner is the perfect companion for runners,... Read more

Latest Forum Discussions

See All

Unpossible (Games)
Unpossible 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $1.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: **Important** Requires at least iPad 2, iPhone 4S, iPod Touch (5th gen), or newer. | Read more »
Hitman GO (Games)
Hitman GO 1.2 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $4.99, Version: 1.2 (iTunes) Description: Get your daily fix of Agent 47 with this elegant, strategy-based Hitman game! | Read more »
The Seventh Sign: Hodappy Bird Released...
The Seventh Sign: Hodappy Bird Released on the App Store Posted by Jeff Scott on April 16th, 2014 [ permalink ] Universal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad | Read more »
Rogue Heroes (Games)
Rogue Heroes 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $1.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Rogue Heroes is awesome fast-paced 2D action-platforming roguelike game with RPG elements. - explore the depth of procedurally... | Read more »
Fourcast Review
Fourcast Review By Jennifer Allen on April 16th, 2014 Our Rating: :: VIDEO POTENTIALiPhone App - Designed for the iPhone, compatible with the iPad Fourcast is a great idea for combining video clips, but it does lack a number of... | Read more »
Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft is Avail...
Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft is Available on the U.S. App Store Right Now – Gogogogo! Posted by Rob Rich on April 16th, 2014 [ permalink ] | Read more »
Grammar Pop HD Review
Grammar Pop HD Review By Jennifer Allen on April 16th, 2014 Our Rating: :: FUN LEARNINGiPad Only App - Designed for the iPad Learning the different parts of speech isn’t always fun, but Grammar Pop HD makes it much more... | Read more »
Groundskeeper2 Review
Groundskeeper2 Review By Nadia Oxford on April 16th, 2014 Our Rating: :: SLICE THOSE ALIEN SLIMEUniversal App - Designed for iPhone and iPad Putting aside some minor control issues, Groundskeeper2 is a fun and furious action/... | Read more »
Pinnacle Studio for iPhone (Photography...
Pinnacle Studio for iPhone 5.0 Device: iOS iPhone Category: Photography Price: $9.99, Version: 5.0 (iTunes) Description: | Read more »
Season 3 of Zombies, Run! Starts Right N...
Season 3 of Zombies, Run! | Read more »

Price Scanner via MacPrices.net

Microsoft Blinks – Drops Microsoft Office 365...
Microsoft has dropped the annual subscription fee for Microsoft Office 365 Personal – which is needed in order to create and edit documents in Microsoft Office for iPad. However, Apple’s iOS and OS X... Read more
New AVG Vault Apps for iOS and Android Help K...
AVG Technologies N.V. an online security company for 177 million active users, has announced the launch of its latest mobile application, AVG Vault. The free app introduces an innovative user... Read more
Free Local Carrot iPhone App Helps Find Fresh...
I love fresh vegetables. I’m not a vegan, although I was for several years in the 1980s, but fresh vegetables and other whole foods are still my dietary mainstays as a matter of taste rather than... Read more
Apple refurbished iPad Airs available startin...
Apple is now offering Certified Refurbished iPad Airs for up to $140 off MSRP. Apple’s one-year warranty is included with each model, and shipping is free. The following Airs are available today: -... Read more
21-inch 2.7GHz iMac on sale for $1179, save $...
B&H Photo has the 21″ 2.7GHz iMac on sale for $1179 including free shipping plus NY sales tax only. Their price is $120 off MSRP. Add an iMac to your shopping cart, and B&H will offer an... Read more
Download our app, iTracx, for iOS and Android
MacPrices is proud to offer readers a free iOS app (iPhones, iPads, & iPod touch) and Android app (Google Play and Amazon App Store) called iTracx, which allows you to glance at today’s lowest... Read more
Education discounts shave up to $300 off the...
Purchase a new Mac at The Apple Store for Education and take up to $300 off MSRP. All teachers, students, and staff of any educational institution qualify for the discount. Shipping is free, and all... Read more
Save $50 on Mac mini Server
B&H Photo has the 2012 Mac mini Server on sale for $949 including free shipping plus NY sales tax only. Their price is $50 off MSRP. Read more
PhatWare’s “Ultimate Writing App For iOS” Ren...
PhatWare Corp. has announced it has renamed its new WritePro word processing app for iPhone and iPad: WritePad Pro. The decision to change the app’s name to leverages the strong brand awareness and... Read more
Full Resolution Photo Editor Tint Mint 1.0 Re...
California based independent developer, Jeffrey Sun, creator of the iOS app Modern Editor, has released Tint Mint, a new photography app for editing enthusiasts. The app costs a dollar, and it packs... Read more

Jobs Board

*Apple* Retail - Manager - Holyoke - Apple I...
Job Summary Keeping an Apple Store thriving requires a diverse set of leadership skills, and as a Manager, you’re a master of them all. In the store’s fast-paced, Read more
*Apple* Retail - Manager - Apple (United Sta...
Job SummaryKeeping an Apple Store thriving requires a diverse set of leadership skills, and as a Manager, you're a master of them all. In the store's fast-paced, dynamic Read more
*Apple* Solutions Consultant (ASC) - Apple (...
**Job Summary** The ASC is an Apple employee who serves as an Apple brand ambassador and influencer in a Reseller's store. The ASC's role is to grow Apple Read more
*Apple* Retail - Market Leader - Cincinnati...
…challenges of developing individuals, building teams, and affecting growth across Apple Stores. You demonstrate successful leadership ability - focusing on excellence Read more
*Apple* Retail - Manager - SoHo - Apple (Uni...
Job SummaryKeeping an Apple Store thriving requires a diverse set of leadership skills, and as a Manager, you're a master of them all. In the store's fast-paced, dynamic Read more
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.