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Microsoft Businesses The Internet

Will Microsoft Put The Colonel in the Kernel? 359

Posted by Zonk
from the is-that-anything-like-the-lime-in-the-coconut dept.
theodp writes "The kernel meets The Colonel in a just-published Microsoft patent application for an Advertising Services Architecture, which delivers targeted advertising as 'part of the OS.' Microsoft, who once teamed with law enforcement to protect consumers from unwanted advertising, goes on to boast that the invention can 'take steps to verify ad consumption,' be used to block ads from competitors, and even sneak a peek at 'user document files, user e-mail files, user music files, downloaded podcasts, computer settings, [and] computer status messages' to deliver more tightly targeted ads."
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Will Microsoft Put The Colonel in the Kernel?

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  • by Whatsmynickname (557867) on Saturday July 14, 2007 @12:15AM (#19856379)
    [paranoia] Wonder when you'll be downloading this important security update from Microsoft? [/paranoia]
    • by zionian117 (1068050) on Saturday July 14, 2007 @12:16AM (#19856387)
      What? weren't "General Failure" and BSOD enuff?
    • by Whammy666 (589169) on Saturday July 14, 2007 @12:32AM (#19856509) Homepage
      I suspect that once the patent gets a little further along that MS will begin introducing bits and pieces of this bullshit as a service packs into Vista. These unwanted 'features' would blend right into Vista's DRM system. Given Vista's new security emphasis, I imagine that MS will make it damn hard to block any of the this by hacking or using external ad-blocking software. I'll think I'll stay with my old W2K system. Fuck MS.
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by networkBoy (774728)
        So will the Windows Malicious Software Tool thus flag the Kernal as AdWare?
        On a flip note, ad supported Vista? Free, but we get to serve you ads?

        but a 100% over my dead body for looking at user files!
      • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

        by bdhall1313 (202306) *
        Maybe this idea came from a Linux "sleeper agent" inside Microsoft?

        What better way to piss off your customers than forcing them to view adds from the OS? This will be great "advertising" for Linux if they are dumb enough to implement it.

        Go for it Microsoft.
      • by 70Bang (805280) on Saturday July 14, 2007 @02:08AM (#19857021)

        So what's going to happen to those who use the nasty online services (dial-up, I think) which already bombard users with ads -- to offset the discount?

        Ads on top of ads.

        We've gone from sick browsers which supported popup crap, popunder, multiple flashing GIFs on the same web pages (ads). Spam - in many forms.

        I can understand ads supporting TV shows -- that's how it stays inexpensive.

        So they expect people to pay for these ads but MS isn't going to give a discount. They just don't have to create, sell, and support what I call "Pass the Hat" releases (see Win98 SE and ME) in order to generate money.

        This only seals Microsoft's fate as a second-rate software provider.

        They've always said they displaced IBM and someone else will replace them, but they aren't going quietly. They still care about being #1, but more importantly, their ultimate fear is in not setting or inventing standards and staying ahead of everyone else.

        Only support some versions of HTML but add other features which they state others have to abide by. They weren't HTML-compliant and fill in the tags (or closed them) which people have overlooked. That meant proofreading the things which were IE-only in Netscape, Mozilla, Firefox.[1] They appear to have ignored all of the support of RSS but create their interpretation of the features they want to without regard to what everyone else wants (or supports).

        Some media have asserted there are tens (some say hundreds) of thousands of Win2K running in business/corporate settings. Win2K/Office 2000/VS6.0 is probably the most stable of a combination of those three things which Microsoft has produced -- honestly, no matter what you're thinking without a C&C warning.

        Businesses don't want to change and see no reason to do so: the hardware they have runs okay, the software is a known evil and things are as stable as they are able to manage. Move to XP or Vista, and it's start all over. New hardware (across the board), new training (especially technical people), new bugs, new support, new everything. Microsoft's Huey, Dewey, and Louie (Marketing, Sales, and PR) haven't found a way to crack that nut...until they started making things, albeit not showstoppers, incompatible with Win2k.

        Until they convert those licenses to XP, and more importantly Vista, it's lost revenue, and smaller dividends paid.

        Cramming ads into the kernel are their best solution (under the circumstances), hoping the ability to crack it will take some time and be considered risky at best.

        All they are doing is telling their little herds of 'softie software is they are getting desperate.

        We've gone from IBM mainframes with 3270 screens to desktops to desktops connected to the 'net, the web, and now, (practically) needing nothing but a browser on a dumb PC in order to deal with everything. Figure out where the MS software fits that timeline.

        __________________

        [1] for a while, it was an easy interview question for HTML people, then ASP. "What happens if things appear on the screen in IE; but a blank screen in browser , but the text is visible when you View|Source?" (unbalanced tags, usually in tables)

      • by PopeRatzo (965947) * on Saturday July 14, 2007 @07:28AM (#19858379) Homepage Journal
        Yep. I've definitely decided to stay with my XP system for now. I'm hoping it's a bridge until I can get the Ubuntu Studio setup working so I can do all my music and video on that machine.

        I've had it with Microsoft.

        I don't think many of us understand the danger of such insidious targeted advertising. What about when the technology is so good it can subtly reformat every article you read, and "customize" every TV show and film you watch in order to influence you to accept a certain set of "truths" or to believe a certain set of facts.

        Too late. It's already here and we haven't given a bit of thought to how it's going to change us. But the people who are paying for this have certainly given a great deal of thought to what it's going to do to us.
        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by langelgjm (860756)

          Yep. I've definitely decided to stay with my XP system for now. I'm hoping it's a bridge until I can get the Ubuntu Studio setup working so I can do all my music and video on that machine.

          What makes you so sure they won't roll it out as an 'update' to XP as well?

        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by DannyO152 (544940)

          I think this is a great illegal restraint of trade case a-brewing. Let' say I have a web site and I sell advertising. If my ads can be replaced by the ones from Microsoft's sponsors at the last step before my audience's eye balls, then why would any one buy any general consumer advertising from me? (Unless I pay protection money to Microsoft to leave my ads be.)

    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by DrLov3 (1025033)
      Remember "I, robot" .... The NS-5s robots turning all evil and stuff when the red light was on(Communicating with central office for automatic updates), I'm starting to think that way back then, Isaac Asimov was really onto something :P
      • by SirTalon42 (751509) on Saturday July 14, 2007 @12:53AM (#19856619)
        *cough* You didn't read Asimov's books, did you?

        the movie wasn't a telling of the story I, Robot...
        • Correct, but because titles are not copyrightable they can use the title. Personally if I was a heri of the Asamov estate I would have sued over the use of the NS-5, USR&MM and "Nestor" names and trademarks.

          Just sayin...
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by tehmorph (844326)
      I'd expect never if I ran Vista Business edition of any sort. Of course, expectation and reality are different things...
  • KFC (Score:4, Funny)

    by zionian117 (1068050) on Saturday July 14, 2007 @12:21AM (#19856417)
    Does this in any way relate to KFC... i nearly ditched linux got vista so that Colonel would get me some fried Chicken!! Then I read the story.... Damn it makes me hungry!
  • by rizzo320 (911761) on Saturday July 14, 2007 @12:22AM (#19856421)
    Microsoft has realized that protecting consumers and selling high quality products are not ways they can make money any longer. Getting in bed with corporations and ad agencies and selling out the customer is looking to become much more profitable for them.

    What really scares me is that for this to be successful, without some type of backlash from the user community, it would have to be forced on us. As in, forced so you could no longer install another operating system on your computer. Perhaps this is there for when they sue Linux out of oblivion, or at least try to. Otherwise, who would ever use another Microsoft product.

    Then again, the data collected from such an endeavor would be so valuable, Microsoft could market computers for free with this software installed. Perhaps that the only other way this is successful.
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by geminidomino (614729) *

      Microsoft has realized that protecting consumers and selling high quality products are not ways they can make money any longer.
      Microsoft made high-quality products?

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by pasamio (737659)
        Microsoft bought high-quality products and then resold them. Large portions of Microsoft top products were written externally and bought later. Take Office, I think that Word and Excel were the only two products that MS wrote out of the entire collection. Microsoft has made its money historically by buying a product and then reselling it (e.g. DOS) with their strong backing (Halo is an interesting example of this as well though not 100% relevant).
    • Hey, it works for the phone companies.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by LWATCDR (28044)
      Well not really. They discovered that Google is making money hand over fist with targeted ads. This makes Microsoft angry because only Microsoft can make large amounts of money from people using computers!
      So this way Microsoft can beat Google at the targeted ads game.
  • by sunwukong (412560) on Saturday July 14, 2007 @12:22AM (#19856427)

    [0038] Although the forgoing text sets forth a detailed description of numerous different embodiments of the invention, it should be understood that the scope of the invention is defined by the words of the claims set forth at the end of this patent. The detailed description is to be construed as exemplary only and does not describe every possibly embodiment of the invention because describing every possible embodiment would be impractical, if not impossible. Numerous alternative embodiments could be implemented, using either current technology or technology developed after the filing date of this patent, which would still fall within the scope of the claims defining the invention.
    Seems awfully vague and encompassing. If this is standard to all patents (or of a certain type) then is it necessary for inclusion?
    • by misleb (129952) on Saturday July 14, 2007 @01:10AM (#19856729)

      The detailed description is to be construed as exemplary only and does not describe every possibly embodiment of the invention because describing every possible embodiment would be impractical, if not impossible.


      A statement like this in a patent application should be grounds for automatic refusal of said patent. If you can't describe the specific implementation of an "invention"... no patent for you!

      -matthew
      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by cnettel (836611)
        It's actually more like the default. The description is just that, a description. You need a proper description, but it's still the actual claims that define your invention. The description can sometimes be used to interpret those claims.
    • Seems awfully vague and encompassing. If this is standard to all patents (or of a certain type) then is it necessary for inclusion?

      It's part of the standard boilerplate that most attorneys add when preparing a patent for filing. One patent attorney described it to me as "hopeful".

    • Seems awfully vague and encompassing. If this is standard to all patents (or of a certain type) then is it necessary for inclusion?

      When the word patent is used as an adjective, one meaning is:

      clear or obvious: very obvious and not open to doubt

      How did we get from that meaning to

      unclear and obfuscated: impossible to understand, open to interpretation

      And all patents seem to be obfuscated in this way. Perl scripts are more readable - at least those can be interpreted by a machine! Why isn't it a requirement th

  • ummmm? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by isthisorigional (527077) on Saturday July 14, 2007 @12:23AM (#19856433)
    i think i speak for everyone when i say "what the fuck??" when did OPERATING SYSTEMS become billboards? so when the next MS OS comes out, instead of everyone looking for activation cracks they'll be looking first for how the hell to get the adds off of their desktop? asking people to view shit at the bottom of msn messenger is one thing, but there is a line.
  • by The Optimizer (14168) on Saturday July 14, 2007 @12:24AM (#19856441)
    My limits finally being hit.

    After swearing it off since my disaster with RedHat 4, I now know I am going to make the effort to explore Linux again. My email, browsing and documents are mine, and if the OS is capable of poking through them to advance the interests and profits of someone else, then the party is over. I can't trust them when they say they'd never do that; if the capability exists, it will get used at some point in time. I'll keep a windows box for gaming, but not much else, and certainly not any accurate identifable personal information.
    • by maelstrom (638)
      If you need some help, let me know. I'd be happy to provide some advice / troubleshooting. -- Long time Linux user.
    • by grammar fascist (239789) on Saturday July 14, 2007 @12:59AM (#19856667) Homepage
      Everything's gotten tons better since RedHat 4. Try Ubuntu - it seems to work with almost everything, and has a very large and helpful user base.
      • by The Optimizer (14168) on Saturday July 14, 2007 @01:04AM (#19856707)
        Thank you, both of you who replied...

        Your helpful attitude is totally opposite of the attitude I ran into 10 years ago when I asked for help online.

        If that's a common reaction, then the Linux comminty has come a long, long way along with the OS and software. I'm looking forward to trying it out and feeling secure again.
        • by misleb (129952) on Saturday July 14, 2007 @01:40AM (#19856889)

          If that's a common reaction, then the Linux comminty has come a long, long way along with the OS and software. I'm looking forward to trying it out and feeling secure again.


          It depends on the distribution and your attitude/skill level going into it. Fortunately there are enough distributions that you should be able to find a good match. But regardless of the distribution, I think it is important that one changes one's expectations of what software is. Once you go with open source software, you should expect to take on an attitude of exploration and community. There is no more expecting software to do exactly what you need right out of the box (although Ubuntu has gotten pretty good about this). Nobody owes you anything (you didn't pay for anything). Whatever anyone in the community does for you (whether it is writing the code or supporting it) is purely voluntary. That is both the strength and weakness of free/open source software. Embrace it.

          -matthew
          • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

            by modecx (130548)
            There is no more expecting software to do exactly what you need right out of the box (although Ubuntu has gotten pretty good about this).

            Neither is Windows very good at doing this. Mac OS, well, it comes closer than just about anything to that goal--in my opinion--but nothing is perfect.

            It comes down to the fact that everyone is trained to put up with Windows idiosyncrasies, and one has to train himself to become accustomed to another set of idiosyncrasies in an effective transition. It's not hard. Heck,
            • by misleb (129952)

              Neither is Windows very good at doing this. Mac OS, well, it comes closer than just about anything to that goal--in my opinion--but nothing is perfect.

              I'm talking about one's expectations. Not the quality of the software. Expectations are very important in life. For example, if I buy a box of popcorn at the movies with the expectation that I'll be the only one eating it and someone else thinks I should share it, I might be a little annoyed. But if I buy the popcorn with the expectation that I'll be sharin

      • by pchan- (118053)

        Everything's gotten tons better [...]
        How dare you call yourself a grammar fascist?
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by plover (150551) *
      Don't worry. There will be an open-source version of this available for Ubuntu sometime in the next month, long before the patent is approved. But it'll be a lame version like 0.89 and only show "Hello, I'm a Mac" ads.
    • by babbling (952366)
      I recommend Ubuntu.
    • by init100 (915886)

      After swearing it off since my disaster with RedHat 4

      It might be a good thing to be more specific, as there are now two entirely different Red Hat distributions that could be shortened to Red Hat 4, the ancient Red Hat Linux 4 and the Red Hat Enterprise Linux 4, which arrived in February 2005. My guess is that you are referring to the former.

      I now know I am going to make the effort to explore Linux again.

      Even if you would finally end up with something else, I suggest trying one of Red Hat's recent distributions so that you can compare with the last one you ran. There is the free community-developed and Red Hat-sponso

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by cvd6262 (180823)
      May I make a suggestion? Use the free VMWare player and the distro image of your choice to begin the migration to Linux.

      http://www.vmware.com/products/player/ [vmware.com]
      http://www.vmware.com/vmtn/appliances/directory/ca t/45 [vmware.com]
    • Well, RedHat is just about the worst desktop system you can imagine. Whenever I encounter a Redhat system, it feels like I discovered the secret of time travel and went back 5 years. You will have better luck with a desktop centric version such as Mandriva or Ubuntu. Those two are actually nicer than Windows XP.
  • by camperdave (969942) on Saturday July 14, 2007 @12:24AM (#19856445) Journal
    ...which delivers targeted advertising as 'part of the OS.'...

    So, I guess this officially makes Microsoft Windows adware/spyware. I wonder if Spybot and Adaware will now remove Windows as part of it's run-through. One can certainly hope so.
  • Yeek... (Score:4, Informative)

    by UncleTogie (1004853) on Saturday July 14, 2007 @12:25AM (#19856453) Homepage Journal
    I'm not sure about the legality of Claim 11... I'm not an ambulance-chaser, but it'd seem that retrieving "user document files, user email, user music files, podcast files, computer status messages, and a profile database storing existing tag data" without our consent/knowledge would be prosecutable...
    • Depends.. (Score:3, Insightful)

      by xtal (49134)
      what you agreed to in the EULA that you didn't read.
  • Love it! (Score:4, Interesting)

    by jcr (53032) <jcr&mac,com> on Saturday July 14, 2007 @12:29AM (#19856489) Journal
    Everyone who wants to see Microsoft's hold on our industry diminish should strongly encourage Ballmer and the rest of his numbskulls to pursue this plan with all possible speed.

    -jcr

  • Isn't this type of thing covered in GPLv3?
  • by robo_mojo (997193) on Saturday July 14, 2007 @12:35AM (#19856523)
    First MS decided to start distributing spyware with the OS when they created WGA. And now they want to top that off by including adware as well?
  • by rolfwind (528248) on Saturday July 14, 2007 @12:36AM (#19856531)
    to fight Google.

    You see, they look at Google and do not get jealous of Google's achievements per se, they get jealous of Google's revenue streams and hence are attacking the revenue stream (advertising) without adding value to the consumer.

    Now, you may argue that this bloatware will make the OS cheaper, but what I think will likely happen over the long run (if this ever goes through) is that the cheapest OS will cost the same and people will have to buy a "premium" version to avoid the ads. If people complain, Microsoft will point out that they got the ad-supported version "free" with the OEM computer (while not mentioning the OEM also paid for that copy).
    • This sounds spot on the nose; I could see microsoft salivating over the idea of marketing a version of windows as "free" as in "free cell phone"...
  • The invention can 'take steps to verify ad consumption,' be used to block ads from competitors, and even sneak a peek at'user document files, user e-mail files, user music files, downloaded podcasts, computer settings, [and] computer status messages' to deliver more tightly targeted ads.

    This is a stunning example of why I refuse to use Microsoft products. They put the wishes of corporations before that of their customers. I will be highly surprised if this is an opt-in "service" - hell, I'll eat my hat if it's even opt-out.

    The only reason Microsoft still has any customers is because most of the computer-using world is locked into using their products by default. If Microsoft were just starting out today, they'd never get anywhere with priorities like this. Hell, if you could go back to

  • ... Wholly big brother Batman!
  • Not yours. (Score:5, Funny)

    by trudyscousin (258684) * on Saturday July 14, 2007 @12:45AM (#19856591)
    When I first heard the name "Windows Genuine Advantage," I thought, "hey, great; I've finally got an advantage over those smug Mac OS X and LInux users!" Then, of course, came the awful truth.

    When I first heard the name "Trusted Computing," I thought, "hey, great; does this, like, mean I can make clicky-clicky on links in the sketchiest of web pages without gasping in shock at the horrors of pathological proctology?" Then, of course, came the awful truth.

    This evening, upon reading the name "Advertising Services Architecture," I thought, "hey, great; is this a cool new enabling technology that will this help me sell more stuff and make more money on eBay?" Then, yet again, came the awful truth, as pointed out in the link to this article.

    As far as I know, these are but three of the 100 reasons [microsoft.com] I'll be speechless for Microsoft Vista. Or saying "Wow!" But: Is there some context in the English language in which "Wow!" means "I've got an axe buried in my head?" (Being speechless does, after all, seem to be an appropriate response to such trauma, and so I was trying to make the connection between the two.) Because after all the all the aforementioned truths, after finding out that this vast infrastructure for which I'm paying has nothing to do whatsoever with that for which I want to use a computer, well, that's kind of what I imagine it feels like.
    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by mazarin5 (309432)
      Is there some context in the English language in which "Wow!" means "I've got an axe buried in my head?"

      I'm not sure if this is the proper spelling, but I think it's something like "Aaaaaaaaaaaoooooooooooooooowwwwwwwwwwww!"

  • The Microsoft Election Services Architecture!!!

    Candidates are already signing up for the beta.
  • I would imagine this would be either implemented in embedded devices for public terminals or that sort of thing, or perhaps for cheap/free versions of Windows/Office for the developing areas of the world, like the 'Starter Edition'. You know, here have a free ad supported OS and software, then when you don't want the ads you have to pay $699 for ad free version.

    I seriously doubt even MS would put this in the mainstream paid for consumer OS.
  • by merc (115854) <slashdot@upt.org> on Saturday July 14, 2007 @01:50AM (#19856951) Homepage
    An OS that watches you and markets products to you... far off ?

    A TV station that markets to you during your favorite program [consumerist.com]

    Advertisements that come inserted into your bills ...

    You are required, at your place of employment to endure compulsory marketing.

    What's next, tatoos in the inside of eyelids when you're born?

    In the world of marketing it seems there are no bad ideas. Overstep boundaries, go to far, garner enough negative attention and you're still golden. It's about brand recognition, not about stimulating support for a product.

    Personally I've become revolted by all forms of marketing. I'm "turned off and tuned out"... to paraphrase what I feel.

    I'm waiting for a consumer revolution in a world of sheep.
  • No.

    That's it I've had it. I'm just gonna start answering every rhetorical question asked by Slashdot.

  • by bmo (77928)
    Just when I think Microsoft can't get any more evil, I run into something like this. \o/

    I'm going to cheer on Ballmer and the rest of the crew at Microsoft if they decide to implement this. That, and I want them to turn up the knob to 11 for OGA and WGA. Advertize at the lusers, and make them pay to get it.

    The Microsoft employee who thought this up deserves a promotion and a raise in pay.

    I'm waiting for them to "monetize the eschaton"

    "Crowley had been extremely impressed with the warranties offered by the
  • by cheros (223479) on Saturday July 14, 2007 @02:18AM (#19857069)
    I wonder if Microsoft is busy abandoning the software business.

    First we get Vista, with a reported 20+ services phoning home with enough detail to make what Redmond get personally identifiable, not to mention that the Business version in my experience is an absolute dog to run compared to XP or Linux on the same "Vista approved" hardware. So we have instant privacy and security problems that come with the package, and new code which will take another year to become actually safe and usable (cute visuals do not maketh a usable business OS, especially if you have to retrain everyone - might as well take the plunge and retrain them on Macs or Linux).

    Then we get the latest Office, which will work in Microsoft's attempt to create an 'Open' file format. That effort has mainly demonstrated that they (a) don't know what Open means, (b) don't see what their customers are asking for and (c) don't care about the previous two aspects, to the point of not understanding that their effort is alienating their increasingly savvy customers.

    What's more, the 'Open' documentation has already given rise to the question if their flawed Excel spreadsheet functions (as documented) are new defects, or simply the first documentation of an already existing flawed interpretation of the laws of mathematics - any calculation done on an Excel spreadsheet to report financial results could now be seen as breaking diligence. In other words, using Excel knowingly may even carry a risk of criminal charges (IMHO, IANAL). Which executive would want that risk, especially with lower cost alternatives at hand that support a file format than can be machine processed and has been accepted at EU level?

    However, MS trying to move into other markets hasn't been quite the success they'd hoped for either. Huge repair bills for Xbox, Zune zonked, and a lot of suppliers opting for a less license encumbered OS in their phones - it's all looking a tad shabby for your average clued up investor. Not a stock I'd keep on my portfolio, and following the progression other companies have made I think death by lawyer (suing your customers) cannot be far away.

    And now, new idea, they're trying to move ads beyond your control into the core OS. Oh yes, that really will help drive up productivity in an office. And it'll be a primary risk vector if it gets infected.

    Oh, yeah, I forgot, any new MS OS is the safest ever. Shame it still gets hacked before it's even launched. Talk about losing credibility..

    Sure, I'm probably just a Mac/Linux fanboy. Isn't it irritating that even the less vocal ones in that category get proven right all the time? I don't choose an OS because of its fanbase, I chose it because it works for my business and I can see through the FUD (and OK, we're not a thousand seat business). I've had one office on OO exclusively now for 6 months, and no client has even noticed the difference - they're now switching to Linux completely. All the other offices are busy being switched to all Open Source based software in the next few months (using the holiday season), with the occasional Mac thrown in for graphics work.

    And you know the best news? No virus problems, no daily 'reboot now' updates, no Genuine Advantage, no BSA/FAST worries.

    It Just Works.
  • Fuck. This. Microsoft OSes have officially dropped out my of acceptance forever. This is what amounts to a dialer and adware package in the fucking kernel, with datamining tacked on as a final insult. This more than anything shows how Microsoft really feels about its "customers." I am not a statistic; I am not a "consumer." And now, I am never, ever knowingly going to pass a single red cent to Microsoft ever again. If I hadn't already made my home a Linux shop, this would fucking well be the last push I nee
  • by Animats (122034) on Saturday July 14, 2007 @02:50AM (#19857189) Homepage

    This may be Microsoft's answer to Google. And, incidentally, to Linux.

    Microsoft already has a tiered operating system - the "business model" version of Vista is significantly more expensive than the "consumer model". The logical extension of this is a free consumer model with ads, and an expensive business model without ads.

    This has many advantages for Microsoft. First, it's an answer to Google, which is ad-supported but doesn't have much of a lock-in mechanism, like Microsoft does. Second, it's an answer to Linux - preloaded consumer grade Windows becomes ad-supported, which is probably worth more than the current preload charge. It even helps Microsoft deal with piracy. The consumer version will be free. The business version will come with mandatory online services (they'll call it something like "Managed Workgroups") that will tie it to the mothership in Redmond.

  • Microsoft making advertising a part of the kernel...Since when is advertising an essential service to
    the system or user?
    If this isn't some sort of a sick joke then Microsoft need to take a long hard look at themselves in the mirror and consider what they've become.
    It amazes me (especially after this announcement) how blatantly Microsoft can prove their priorities have nothing to do with the user yet still some businesses and even governments consider purchasing Microsoft products first.
    Those managers in pur
    • Since when has Microsoft ever created anything "essential" for the user? I'd cite references, but all you have to do is have been alive for the past 15 years to notice Microsoft's "screw-the-people-because-we-make-money-by-forcing -companies-to-use-our-software".
  • This is a great idea and will be excellent for my computer security business. Suddenly, everybody will need a Squid Proxy filter system.
  • by mrjb (547783)
    delivers targeted advertising as 'part of the OS.' First of all, all macro/microkernel discussions aside, what business does targeted advertising have as part of any operating system? Second, I think it is ridiculous that people who *pay for* an operating system are still forced advertisements down their throat. I'll stick with my ad-free OS, thank you.
  • I think this will only be for people who use Home versions of the product. Those who use business versions won't get the ads because its a distraction. But still its kind of annoying for us Helldesk geeks. I get complaints when they see an ad on a website that they can't get rid of with {insert adware masquerading as ad blocker}.
  • by zentec (204030) * <`moc.liamg' `ta' `cetnez'> on Saturday July 14, 2007 @10:02AM (#19859161)
    I never thought I'd play the Microsoft apologist, but getting a patent that covers a broad swath of how to display ads on a computer may be their plan to keep advertising off the desktop. Being the devil's advocate (pun intended), Microsoft may want to sue companies as a way to make them go away. As more malware hides deeper into the OS, this might an arrow in the quiver to combat the use for profit.

    It's also possible that this is intended for another go at a DVR. Not that I would store documents on my DVR, it seems logical to want to be able to throw ads in there in the most efficient way possible.

    However, if taken at first glance, it appears Microsoft has truly come up with yet another innovative way to make Windows an even more awful user experience. Way to go, Microsoft!

  • by Chris Mattern (191822) on Saturday July 14, 2007 @01:17PM (#19860295)
    ...but at least we'll have chicken.

    Chris Mattern

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