[opendtv] Re: Tide Turning in Browser Wars?

  • From: Craig Birkmaier <craig@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: opendtv@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Fri, 2 Jul 2004 09:14:36 -0400

At 5:00 PM -0700 7/1/04, John Willkie wrote:
>"endless vulnerabilities" is an interesting point, since in one week last
>month, there were two Mac virii that -- as I predicted years ago -- affected
>hundreds of computers around the world.  The problems were in OS 10.  I
>heard that Apple supplied patches.  Let's see what the next moves are, but I
>thought it apt to mention in this off-topic post, that not just PCs are
>infected, it's just that the Mac target is smaller, and perhaps harder to

There was a significant difference with these vulnerabilities in 
OS-X. There were NO viruses. These vulnerabilities were found by a 
Mac anti-virus company and used to promote the sale of their 
anti-virus software, based on the "potential" vulnerability. Apple 
immediately fixed them.

I do agree that all platforms are vulnerable, and I appreciate the 
fact that I can ignore most of this stuff because I use a Mac. I have 
not had a virus that broke anything in more than a decade. I did 
detect the MS Word Macro virus in several documents, but Microsoft 
came up with a fix for that before it could do anything evil.

>P.S.  Unfortunately, many problems with IE are not the browser itself, but
>the Internet plumbing behind it.  EVEN IF YOU REMOVE IE, the internet
>plumbing remains.  Many people with PCs know this, and it was a prominent
>feature of the Justice Department case against MS.

Yup. This did not receive the attention it deserved. I often wondered 
why the government did not raise a very basic question:

How is it that Internet Explorer can run as an application on the 
Mac, but it must be integrated into the OS on a PC?

Clearly Apple figured out how to create the enabling OS plumbing in 
both OS9 and OSX, and Microsoft was able to use the Apple OS to 
provide nearly equivalent functionality for IE on the Mac. But on the 
PC they commingled OS services and application software to create the 
appearance that integration is necessary with windows.

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