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June 27, 2005


Fazal Majid

The most important thing about MS' announcement, in my opinion, is that now that MS has "blessed" RSS, all the laggards who were sitting the fence or not clued-in to begin with, will start investigating. The enterprise RSS marketplace is going to explode after this.

Earl Mardle


That's an interesting possibility. Given that you don't need MS permission to implement RSS and especially since people like Taka have been developing enterprise applications already, it will be interesting to see whether there is a flood or whether the natural growth will overtake most people anyway.

My bet is with Taka. First they have to get LongHorn out and given the sliding deadline on that, I suspect that MS will be playing catchup rather than leading the pack.

Fazal Majid

I didn't mean Microsoft will take over RSS, just that it has now given RSS instant credibility among the lemmings who will not even consider anything not blessed by Redmond. That PR boost outside the geek/early-adopter community is probably the most important aspect to MS' announcement.

Even today, 50% of business PCs run Windows 2000 (my company's do). The upgrade from XP SP2 to XP SP3 (a.k.a Longhorn) will be even less compelling and it will take 5-10 years for the transition to happen. The only interesting feature in Longhorn so far is InfoCard (assuming it does not get culled like WinFS or Avalon), and it doesn't have any bearing on RSS/Atom. In other words, Longhorn will not be a major factor in the marketplace until long after the battle is lost and won.

In all likelihood, RSS integration in Office (as a mailbox type in Outlook, as a data source for Excel) is going to be much more important than any RSS support in Windows itself.

Hey, I'm all for the little guy. After all, according to Tim Bray, my own aggregator, Temboz, has a market share almost 55% of Awasu's...

Earl Mardle

Dawning light. It never occurred to me that users would be afraid of stuff that ISN'T MS. Holy cow, I use anything but unless I absiolutely have to.

I saw you link to the Win2K/XP issue. I suppose MS' big problem is that the closer it gets to a real OS, the less need there will be to upgrade. After all, we are now at the point where the least system exceeds the overt requirements of the vast majority of users.

The conundrum is that if it is to work properly and not scare the horses, as Taka says, it will probably have to be almost invisible, but to gain from the MS adoption, it needs to be on the surface.

Hey, and congratulations on Temboz, I must have a look.

Fazal Majid

Actually Taka has an edge - Microsoft must artificially ensure its newest features are delivered only on Longhorn and (grudgingly, as with IE7) on XP2, but most certainly not on Win2K, otherwise nobody would upgrade from the good-enough (and arguably superior due to less bloat) Win2K.

Microsoft's worst competitor is their installed base, not Linux or Apple (yet). Awasu is not under the same self-imposed restrictions excluding 50% of the addressable market, and can benefit from MS' PR efforts today, when MS does not have a competing product that actually, well, ships.

Have a look at the Mini-Microsoft blog (minimsft.blogspot.com) to understand the feeling of malaise within the Redmond giant about their staff bloat and unability to deliver shipping products.

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