[Linux-aus] Hardware resellers of the world, rejoice!

Ian Wienand ianw at gelato.unsw.edu.au
Fri May 7 08:58:01 UTC 2004

On Thu, May 06, 2004 at 11:52:31AM +1000, Les Bell wrote:
> In 1986 or '87 (from memory), Bill Gates was keynote speaker at the annual
> ACS PC Conference. In his speech, he stated - and this is pretty much
> word-for-word, as it shocked me at the time and stuck in my memory - "We
> had three goals in mind when we introduced Windows: 1. Multitasking. 2:
> Graphical user interface. 3. To stimulate consumer demand for more
> sophisticated hardware". (Point 3 is *definitely* his precise phrase).
> I interpreted this to mean that Microsoft sees itself in the business of
> selling hardware for its business partners.

Well maybe he didn't mean that at all.  I don't know much about the
historical context, being in probably kindergarden at the time, but
going from google it looks like the 386 was introduced right around
that time.  I'm assuming most people still had 8086 chips.

Seeing as his first point was multitasking, my first assumption is
that his third point was referring to the fact that the 386 was the
first chip with real support for protected mode, which is essential to
"multitasking".  AFAIK in the following 20 years there hasn't been any
fundamental improvements to consumer CPUs like protected mode.

So in that context he's was fair enough in wanting to push more
sophisticated hardware.  He saw the benefits of a better architecture
and wrote software for it.  

(Now if you'd all drop your fascination with Opteron and move to a
decent 64 bit platform like, say, IA64 ... ;)

ianw at gelato.unsw.edu.au

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