Laser Blog

Articles tagged "historical"

87 More vindication for Gary Kildall

Thursday 2nd August, 2007

Following on from my previous entry, Groklaw has unearthed an interesting snippet from the court notes:

Thirteen years before the Book was published, Mr. Kildall was quoted in a newspaper article as saying: "Ask Bill why function code 9 (in DOS) ends with a dollar sign . . . . No one in the world knows that but me." James Wallace & Jim Erickson, Bill Gates: Of Mind and Money, Seattle P-I, May 8, 1991... In his January 2007 deposition, Mr. Paterson conceded that function 9 was terminated with a "$" sign only "because that was what was in the manual. They published a manual; the manual said put a dollar sign at the end. So I followed the manual." Paterson Dep. at 130:11-131:9.


86 Was Microsoft's first OS stolen?

Wednesday 1st August, 2007

The link the article is broken, but there are other sites which still discuss this story.
Rob. April 2015.

This is interesting.

In a book on American innovation, author Sir Harold Evans wrote that DOS inventor Tim Paterson relied heavily on an existing OS called CP/M (Control Program/Monitor) created by a programmer who has since died. Microsoft in 1980 struck a licensing deal with Paterson's company -- Seattle Computer Products -- to obtain access to DOS and resell it to IBM.
In his book "They Made America", Evans writes that Paterson, in developing DOS, took "a ride on" CP/M, which was created by the late Gary Kildall. Evans also wrote that Paterson's DOS operating system appropriated the "look and feel" of CP/M, copied its user interface, and "ripped-off" CP/M.

This is not the first time that people have claimed that Microsoft used stolen software or ideas in their products. But rotten to the root? Interesting.


80 A canned history of spam

Friday 1st June, 2007

There is a concise, but interesting history of spam on the NineMSN site. I guess its release has been timed to coincide with the news about the Italian ISP Tiscali being blacklisted as spammer-friendly.

Going back to the NineMSN article, I find it a little ironic that MSN is publishing an article based on a problem which in no small part is caused by the lax security of the software produced by it's parent company:

Like many other spammers, Robert Soloway sent out his bulk emails using so-called "zombie" computers: these are usually ordinary home computers that have been inadvertently infected with a virus that opens them up to spammers.

What authors always fail to stress in these articles is that the "ordinary home computers that have been inadvertently infected with a virus that opens them up to spammers" are invariably running Windows.