Daily Archives: February 1, 2014

Highs and Lows of Microsoft

Microsoft brought the computing to the common person. Heavy use of graphical icons (GUI) has made it simple and by exploiting the visible cues brought it into the applications which are very useful. It has obliterated the type writers out of existence and rendered them as relics through its product Microsoft word. I remember how cumbersome it was to use the type writer. Its output was like the live performance of an artist in which there are no retakes. Now one can store the file and edit it to no ends till the owner is satisfied. One can edit, add and remove the text. In fact whole suite of Microsoft office forms the backbone of office chores these days.

Microsoft.jpg

On the other hand, working in the DOS operating system was not easy and required good memory to remember the commands to access the files and applications were few. The very fact that Windows OS has made the use of computer very easy has also given the hackers easy access to exploit and continuously play the deadly games with the Windows based computing by spreading viruses.

Microsoft has seen many high and many low phases in its life. In fact now it has become an underdog from top dog. Many formidable competitors like Apple and Google have surged forward and closing on the Microsoft. Here is a list of highs and lows:

High Points

1. MS-DOS : Although termed as Dirty Operating System by rivals, this was the path breaking step and also the beginning of software licensing.

2. Ms-Office: Flagship of office products like Word, Excel and Powerpoint is inseparable part of any office work. The product is improving with each new version.

3. Windows 95: First standalone Windows OS. It is the foundation on which all the successive versions were built.

4. Windows XP: Best loved version of Windows. Stable and worked using minimum resources of memory and data storage device.

Lows:

1. Windows Vista: Poorest performer. Bloatware, hogged large resources. Very poor support for the hardware drivers. Very mention of it made the users livid.

2. Windows ME: People have even forgotten this and many even don’t know this ever existed. It lasted just one year.

3. Zune: Pitted against the iPod of Apple. But the effort came too late and Apple is ahead by 4-5 years.

Ranking vis-a-vis other players as per fortune 500

Ranking 2013

Apple          :6

Microsoft   : 35

Google        :55

Pepsico       :43

Facebook   : 482

Revenue 2013 ($ billions)

Apple          :171

Microsoft   : 78

Google        :50

Pepsico       :65

Facebook   : 8

Market Cap ($ billions)

Apple          :450

Microsoft   : 312

Google        :394

Pepsico       :124

Facebook   : 153

Profit 2013 ($ billions)

Apple          :37

Microsoft   : 22

Google        :11

Pepsico       :6

Facebook   : 1.5

Premonition of Impending Death

Numerous books have been written on the life of Mahatma Gandhi, the father of Indian nation. Latest in the series is the book written by Pramod Kapoor and is named “My experiments with Gandhi”. Each book tries to explore the different aspects of the life of great man. Some excerpts are given about the thoughts and happenings in the life of Gandhi.

The author cites a number of incidences in the last 48 hours of Bapu’s life which show that Mahatma has premonition about his death and he indicated this to his near and dear ones saying that he wouldn’t remain amid them for long.
For example, on the afternoon of January 29, 1948, the day before the assassination, an agitated member of a group of villagers who had been recently rendered homeless due to communal clashes, confronted Gandhi ji and claimed that he had done enough damage.

“You have ruined us utterly. Leave us alone and take your abode in the Himalayas,” the angry person had said.
This disturbed Mahatma very much. That same evening, while walking to his prayer meeting, he had confided to his grandniece Manuben, “The pitiful cries of these people is like the voice of God. Take this as a death warrant for you and me.”

A few hours later, that afternoon, a four year old Rajiv accompanying Krishna Huthee Singh, Jawaharlal Nehru’s sister and Indira had called on Bapu. Rajiv placed some flowers at feet of Gandhi to which he had playfully chided the little boy and said, “You must not do that. One only puts flowers around dead people’s feet.”
On January 30, Gandhi battled thoughts of death more than just once. Bapu was feeling unwell and had woken up at 3:30 am. He was ‘unusually disturbed with the ‘darkness’ that surrounded him. The darkness being, partition woes and infighting in the Congress. At about 3:45 am, he had surprisingly asked for a rendition of a Gujarati bhajan,

‘Thake na thake chhataye nhon/

Manavi na leje visramo/

Ne jhoojhaje ekal bayen/

Ho manavi, na leje visramo

which roughly translates in English to

Whether tired or not,

O man do not take rest,

stop not, your struggle,

if single-handed, continues.


Few hours later Bapu was asked to take some penicillin pills that his doctor had left for him to cure a bad cough. “If I were to die of disease or even a pimple, you must shout to the world from the house tops, that I was a false Mahatma. Then my soul, wherever it may be, will rest in peace. But if an explosion took place or somebody shot at me and I received his bullets on my bare chest, without a sigh and with Rama’s name on my lips, only then you should say I was a true Mahatma.”