Note that my issue with EXX being brought up is that it is superficial, to the point of being deceptive to the kind of threats Microsoft+Github are most likely to pose if Nadella et al do have their own malicious plans. But I think Microsoft's support for a healthy OSS ecosystem, via Github and things like VS Code, is genuine. Not necessarily out of altruism, but because it's one of the few ways they can have an edge into the future and not fall into stagnation like IBM.
Tides change. Whether or not Microsoft is benevolent today, they may not be in 5+ years.
Any company large enough to screw me over without feeling the loss of my (and people like me's) business in their pocketbook, is not a company I want in a position of power over me. Adapted to this conversation: we should not tolerate "extend" from any company that could successfully pull off "extinguish".
It feels tiring that any time Microsoft does something good, EEE comes up, but times where Amazon or Google are doing massive damage to our industry or standards for their own benefits it's crickets.
- How great it feels to make dire predictions about the future. Only I can see how terrible M$'s latest move is going to be. The other sheeple can't. When I'm right I'll tell everyone I told them so.
- How satisfying it is to educate these younguns with their JS frameworks. They don't have my wisdom and experience so I'm doing my duty to society and HN by sharing with them. I will paste links to wikipedia wherever necessary. Like so -> https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Embrace,_extend,_and_extinguis...
- how smart I'll look by talking cynically. Every action that someone takes will be followed by a cynical analysis which assumes the worst intentions. Wide eyed optimists will look naive to any person lacking context.
You know, simple predictions are often correct. But ignore it (especially if your salary depends on it).
This is the only way to make a difference.
Are you suggesting people change companies every time they uncover their existing employer did something unethical/immoral?
I say this as someone whose employer in the past turned into a patent troll - as a new parent and during a downturn it was difficult to switch jobs for quite some time.
But we can keep seeing things in what has been seen, and never debate the merits in a circular semantics game.
Do you see? I see what you did, but I guess you saw what someone else did, and boom we achieved faux transparency.
And here is wiki article because I totally see what you did with that wiki thing, like so:
That’s the kind of stuff Microsoft tried to lock people into before.
And we remember a world where the stranglehold by IE had to be ruthlessly shredded with open web standards just to get back to sanity.
I don't doubt that MS would take advantage of market dominance again if it was achieved somehow, and I am sure they are making these plays with increasing their ecosystem in mind.
One interesting acquisition to look at is LinkedIn which they have really tightened the screws on to the point where everyone looking for employees or trying to find a job is made to pay. This is especially vile for the unemployed IMHO.
On the other hand, the eager monopolist of the day is really Amazon, and MS taking them on is a good thing for the ecosystem.
If there is competition MS seems to be playing a fair game. I hope it stays that way.
The structure of US corporations is such that they are fundamentally misaligned with playing a fair game. Corporations have two types of cycles: growth, and profit taking.
Regardless of who is in charge of Microsoft today, when Microsoft reaches a position of dominance, the leadership will be shifted by the board and shareholders to focus on exploiting that dominance, rather than continuing to play fair. We are only seeing fair play because Microsoft's position in the open source world is not yet entrenched.
And hopefully there's room for smaller titans to provide specialized alternatives, e.g. Spotify, Dropbox, Gitlab, Zoom
Is it impossible that a company, with a new CEO and leadership team, would reanimate a strategy from 25 years ago (more like 50 years ago by non-tech industry timescales)? Especially one that the company itself used, and the new CEO witnessed first-hand being used, to great effect to acquire market dominance?
> What evidence is there that Nadella is a Manchurian candidate for Ballmer forces?
What evidence is there that Nadella is not trying to use the same tactics as Ballmer?
They could certainly change their minds again if it suits them
Microsoft still does quite a few detrimental things towards open source movement and community in general.
Microsoft is now a wolf in sheep’s clothing
If the answer is nothing, then logically they should disregard you and carry on.
The web in particular is still traumatized from years of IE use/development. You needed a virtual machine to test IE on linux/Mac, think about that for a second. It’s great that they realize ‘woah we didn’t give a flying fuck about developers before, huh?’
We’re still being super nice to Microsoft that we don’t give them a pure cold shoulder and accept and evaluate their contributions.
Need time, can’t just go running back to the ex because they bought you something expensive.
Nadella IT cells...
Embrace: We care about our customers. If someone other than us creates something that would be valuable to them, of course we're going to embrace it. To do otherwise, would be a Not Invented Here failure, would be to let down our customers.
Extend: We care about our customers. We are a major center of innovation, working constantly to improve things for them. We're not going to hold back on helping them just because some standards committee is moving like cold molasses, riven by politics, technically tasteless, or has conflict interests optimizing for things other than the best interests of our customers. And we're certainly not going to later break things for our customers merely because some committee eventually decides it wants things done differently. They're just committees. More people are benefiting from our work than theirs. We're not going to hurt our customers just because some committees have a disproportionate sense of entitlement and importantance.
Extinguish: We care about our customers. And those who are potentially our customers. We want to make it as easy as possible for people to gain the benefits of being our customers. The health of our competitors, and even of people unfortunate to not yet be our customers, are not our motivating responsibility. We're focused on our customers, and what happens to that portion of the industry that isn't, can't be what we optimize for. And we're just a normal commercial company, so of course we're not going to fail to compete with our competitors. If nothing else, we owe it to their customers who may soon be ours. And of course to our stockholders.
Much evil in the world is arguably an emergent property of regrettable incentives.
I mention this only because this post is for whatever reason trending today, and past discussions have repeatedly been of unusually disappointing quality for tech topic on HN. Perhaps this comment will help prune some of the inevitable "but they're good people now, not evil, so there's no problem" comments.
Nothing on the Halloween Documents resembles good faith. Those cases where companies just want to improve their products are much more benign and fail to have the same extinguishing power.
Nobody disputes that Microsoft's incentives are 'regrettable', so what point are you really trying to make?
Incentives can result in individuals making "good" decisions relative to their environment that result in organizations making "bad" decisions relative to the playing field as a whole.
This is essentially the Tragedy of the Commons on a meta-scale, and requires regulation or sovereign action to overcome.
In other words, these things tend to play out the same way, hence why the same things are said about it over and over again.
If we could boil it down to a word, we’d have to just call it a pattern.
A ten year old today learning programming will be locked in. As will JS yuppies and the extremely articulate product manager types.
I like it. Gives me an opportunity to become a "thought leader" by promoting the UNIX approach to enterprises in 5-10 years.
In what world is a 10-year-old locked in to the MS ecosystem any more than they were in the days of win32 and IE6? If anything, I'd look askance at Apple for Safari's hiding of `view source` by default...
Lately I know only devs that work either on macos or on Linux. I haven't seen Windows anywhere since few years (except when I do cloud gaming).
An example of a lock-in is excel back in the time when the format wasn't public. Wanna use something different? have fun manually re-entering your sheets in your new software.
How can GitHub CodeSpaces even cross your mind when thinking about lock-in? This is like saying the textbox on HN is a form of lock-in.
It wasn't public but it was reverse engineered and supported by things like OpenOffice. Anything, especially a file format, that is both proprietary and popular gets reverse engineered at some point.
- GitHub has some special things like issues and pull requests but in general you can just switch your origin URL to another Git repository that isn't GitHub and boom you are off GitHub.
- NPM you can just point your package.json at any Git repository you want, no need to use the NPM package repo.
- VSCode Online: like I said, just use a different online editor.
Not too much lock in going on here. Integrations and seamless workflow? Sure. But lock in? No I don't think so.
Not only is it easy, VS Code made it easier than ever. By creating protocols for language and debugger support, they've liberated future text editor developers from having to support every language under the sun. By adding support for the protocol, the new text editor automatically gains support for all languages.
The moat for the editor is the plugin shop. We will be able to see how committed they are to being open. At least for now, their Live Share plugin doesn't seem to be available for other editors . It's nice to have easy access to debugging but how do you sell your editor if you don't have all the other productivity features?
This is literally the Embrace/Extend part of EEE
Even if they remove support for the protocols, those language and debugging servers still exist. Those servers are controlled by a wide variety of organisations, all of whom are committed to supporting the entire ecosystem of editors.
It doesn’t take much to regurgitate “EEE” on an MS article. If you can’t even imagine how the final E works in a specific case, maybe say nothing at all.
I don't personally think that Microsoft is attempting EEE here but just bringing up the point that it is, to a certain extent, made hard to fork.
I've been on the Microsoft train since I was 8. I suffered no problems picking up Rust.
> "thought leader" by promoting the UNIX approach
This is a controversial opinion around here, but the UNIX approach/philosophy isn't particularly good. It is merely beloved. The Microsoft approach isn't much better.
A thought leader would actually solve this problem instead of repeating a tired, old and failed non-solution. UNIX sucks. Windows sucks. This circular appeal to nature (UNIX is good because UNIX is good) is getting really old.
If that's what you call "locked in" things are significantly better these days than they were 20-30 years ago!
There is almost no lock in to any product in 2020....people just love the developer ecosystem that MS has built these past 5-8 years or so.
When Microsoft was the dominant software Goliath, they were winning in business and personal computing. The internet was new and they wanted to win that - not necessarily by being the best, but by using their leverage.
In the current environment, Microsoft is still winning in a lot of areas of business - competitive if not dominant. They have meaningful positions (but also competitors) in cloud hosting, operating systems and productivity software.
In my opinion, we're in a good place for a lot of these vectors. Cloud has Azure, AWS and GCP (though I don't know how well GCP is competing.) Operating systems have the classic gorilla in Windows, the polished closed system macOS and the persistent open source varieties of Linux. They are all meaningfully competitive.
Mobile is probably the weakest area, in my opinion. I wish Microsoft was still competing with Windows Phone here, because I don't love my Android and iOS options. They are good and they do what I need. I'm not confident I could switch between them easily (the way I am mostly confident I can switch between Windows, macOS and Linux).
(Online advertising is clearly the realm of Facebook and Google.)
I'm not sure how to summarize, but I don't think Microsoft is the same 800-pound gorilla that stuck us with Internet Explorer 6 for way too long. They'll (as long as they can) always be ambitiously seeking dominance in profitable software-related markets. They'll never be 100% charitable or philanthropic. And neither will their competitors. Is there a useful rubric or framework to think about all this?
What are personal decisions you can make that aren't too painful, but matter on the grand scale of these massive companies?
This is a _good_ state we're in, not a bad one.
VSCode, Typescript, Github, WSL, the inevitable tie into Azure...
I wonder how this all ends.
We can short circuit some of the inevitability I guess, still holding out for this:
Looks like Deno already adopted Typescript, but the world doesn’t have to revolve around Github.
AWS and Azure will keep each other honest.
Edit: I’ll add that I really really don’t think Microsoft wants to proselytize developers into it’s ecosystem just to make apps for Windows. I really think they are going to try mobile again.
My fear is that we're in for a tedious decade where we see unironically-announced re-implementations of every existing iOS, Android, and Linux desktop application against this upcoming target platform, with corresponding re-occurrences of previously-seen bugs and security vulnerabilities to match.
I'd prefer to learn that we're going to standardize on open web technologies for delivery of software, and that for each case there'll be at least a few mature open source applications or libraries that fit the bill -- and that all that amazing developer capability and productivity is directed towards maintaining and enhancing those, instead of re-inventing them.
I mentioned in another comment, it’s nowhere near a stretch to see Typescript extended and compiled down to C#, where suddenly we are all on the .NET stack because we all got shepherded via Typescript. It can happen that fast.
If I had to takeover with my stack, this is exactly how I’d do it.
First of all C# doesn't run in the browser without compiling to WASM which has all sorts of caveats.
Second, I don't see how the fact that one could compile TS to C# would suddenly put everyone "on the .NET stack". Does the same risk exist if we can compile JS to C#? Which would work about just as well (i.e. not). And TS is also open source and produces reasonably readable JS, so it's not like there's even any lock-in.
Wouldn't it make more sense to be worried about compiling C# or other languages to WASM? Which I'm also not worried about.
Did you think Typescript would be the native language in Deno? No, you thought it was something that you might or might not use depending on the situation. Well guess what, that choice is gone for you in Deno’s case. These things compound.
It’s one of the reasons you will see people make a simple blog site with create-react-app, they are so inoculated with the hammer that everything is a nail. Did we think we’d be using React like that and forgo style sheets? Just inline all styles? That’s what we all do now. I had no idea we’d become that nuts, but it happened.
It’s not particularly bad in all cases, but for the web it is because we’ll stop using standard technologies that are supported across all types of scenarios.
Yes? I thought that was the whole point. Actually I'm confused about the use of "native" here. It supports running both TS and JS files? And the TS files must be compiled to JS before they can be run anyway. So I'm not seeing any choice that was lost.
That’s what we all do now
I mean, some people do, but I don't. Not everyone uses React / Vue / etc, and afaik it's only React that is forgoing stylesheets. And it's not like stylesheets are dead or that styling elements through JS is non-standard. (I do use Vue, with stylesheets)
I hold out hope for the nascent Deno community to find some way to build in Swift as a core language, too...
I wonder when that data will be exposed on LinkedIn (hey recruiters, this guy is working late hours a lot!).
And then the eventual integration of that dystopian system with MS's developer monopoly. Now we have a truly "boring dystopia".
The worst part is: MS now has all the tools for this and more.
I'd love to see Mozilla hop on board with it
Witness the delightful, slow-motion failure to launch that was Dart...
There's pretty much no one left in the conversation who could credibly move us past an endless JS-only future of progressively-more-TS-like ES20XXs at this point...
(And, IMHO, saying that Rust is a Mozilla thing is just plain incorrect.)
microsoft, and apple also, should make desktop native apps easier to develop. and stop with the mobile chase.
only apps from the top 10 in every app store are used on a daily basis. customers are not willing to use anything else, unless required to -- i.e. bank, insurance, etc.
on the other hand, we are always willing to give an improved desktop app a try.
support it if you are afraid that MS could pull the plug on their Marketplace in a few years
It would be more interesting for microsoft to take a stance on privacy like apple.
BSDs do a bit better here, but they are still behind on several metrics. Maybe this will be the main motivation for the next successful kernel? The fact the Linux simply got too big and complex?
The question is strongly dependent on future developments. With this being contributed as a GPU driver and the likely hope of this being used to run Linux applications within another OS, the question might be re-framed:
How is this addition to the Linux Kernel API going to benefit _all_ users of Linux, not just users of WSL?
Were Microsoft trying to provide a thin abstraction layer, so that drawing to a vGPU shard from windows on the application facing side of the Linux Kernel API looked like any other standard GPU under Linux, I feel it very likely everyone would feel positively about the changes.
If this were about contributing Microsoft's vGPU driver for Linux, and in so doing also implementing only Freely Implementable Industry Standards (like Vulcan, OpenGL, or maybe others that Microsoft made/makes similarly free), while also not neglecting the expected core standards for other GPU drivers, then that also seems logically acceptable for everyone.
Though my above suppositions are purely my opinion and guesses about the opinions of the maintainers for the software, while trying to think about how they approach their inherent responsibility for the long term maintenance and stability of a project they are clearly passionate about.
But also Spotify! There's a strain of thought out there that the podcast ecosystem is resistant to centralization, but Spotify is making a serious go at proving this wrong.
I thought that exact same thing when I saw that article yesterday.
Interestingly Linux has its own corporate champion: Redhat/Poettering. Currently they're the villain in most Linux circles, but it'll be interesting to see them and MS square off, as they inevitably will.
'DirectX is coming to the Windows Subsystem for Linux'
People think that EEE is what Microsoft might be doing in this case.
Microsoft is taking over the world. They now own Github, NPM, Citus data, LinkedIn and a ton of other companies. Not to mention they have a trojan horse on almost every new developers machine thanks to TS and VSCode, and all of the data and services that companies are trusting to them on Azure. They are poised to become a data king.
TBH... if I had a bunch of liquid cash to fuck around with I would be buying a ton of MSFT becuase my gut is telling me they are going to really take a huge slice of the open source development pie here in the next few years.
They know that is the market they need to capitalize on which is why all these acquisitions and investments are happening.
But public companies are not people.
Of course they change -- tactics -- and try to gain control again. Everything they do will in the end have to be justified to their shareholders and how it will either gain them profit either now or in the long run, and as soon as the fickle-minded shareholders change their tune, out goes Nadella, and we'll get another Balmer or worse.
There is historically no such thing as a trustworthy super-power unless it subsists overwhelmingly on the support of discerning people.
And now all this, all over again? Goddamn this industry.
It seems to me what you're complaining about is less about Microsoft and more about capitalism and greed in general.
3 if you count https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=15869249.
Microsoft announces Lists, a new Airtable-like app
- Embrace, Extend, Extinguish is something different. It's about adopting standards in order to break them and gradually lock people into proprietary variants. This guy is talking about just copying existing products.
Seems similar enough to me. Just thinking of UI as a feature.
Users who use Linux distros are content with their overall desktop experience in the absence of closed-source libraries such as DirectX, etc. They were never the target audience Microsoft gains from embracing because not many would have felt the incentive to do so. Especially considering their efforts to port and upstream changes to the kernel, lessening the allure. Albeit not that Microsoft is doing this out of the goodness of their hearts, they benefit from doing so.
Meanwhile, the Apple developer ecosystem has not made any significant strides. It has been a while since homebrew that OSX has gotten a useful developer tool, and ever since Lattner departed from both of his projects related to Swift (TF), it has slowly been losing traction.
Many Mac users choose OSX for the neat desktop experience Linux struggled to offer, and the *nix-like interface Microsoft had been missing. WSL and Microsoft's recent contributions to Linux has changed the Windows developer experience significantly, giving many previously hesitant Mac shops the nod.
And to quote many people from open source: you still have the source code so if there is something you don't like you can always change it and build a version that better suits your needs.
How is IBM's or Oracle's involvement in open source not a bad things? Is Oracle really someone who's suddenly ok?
From all these comments, all I see is: someone is going to build a different toy and many will want to play with that instead of this.
"Many Mac users choose OSX for the neat desktop experience Linux struggled to offer, and the *nix-like interface Microsoft had been missing. WSL and Microsoft's recent contributions to Linux has changed the Windows developer experience significantly, giving many previously hesitant Mac shops the nod." Okay, so? It's Windows. Feel free to ignore it. How does that threaten your emacs/node/c/python/gnome/tensorflow working environment?
When docker wasn't working on Windows nobody cared. Why should I have to install vmware or dualboot just because someone can't be bothered to make docker work normally on windows?
Using libdxd12.so, which is closed source and works only under WSL.
> They are not changing Linux.
They are literally asking the Linux kernel to pull in their changes to add a proxy to Windows's device driver model to the Linux kernel. No changes to Windows; all changes to Linux.
> They are adding something to Windows.
Windows already has DirectX, so no, they are not adding something to Windows.
> Why are you all so threatened all the time?
Because MS has a proven track-record of screwing others over. It is only wise to heed a potential threat.