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March 2000

Letters, Addendum, Errata

February 15, 1999 - The following letter is from Tom Nadeau regarding Warp Doctor:

I enjoyed the McClendon/Maxson article on WarpDoctor support. This project will be a prime example of how to emulate the grass-roots success of the Linux/GNU community. Remember, they started without a "champion" or ownership corporation. They grew because of a communal sense of ownership and participation, driven by a sense of user-based control of the destiny of the project. We have the same opportunity with WarpDoctor, because we can be the "owners" of this project, no matter who own OS/2 itself.

February 15, 1999 - The following letter is in reference to the February article 'Die, Elephant, Die' - http://www.os2voice.org/VNL/past_issues/VNL0200H/vnewsf6.htm by Mark Dodel:


I just finished reading your article on my favorite pachyderm - nice article. I noticed on your screen shots that you have some interesting icons running across the top. What program or programs are you using that produces them? They seem to be very useful for one click action.


Author's response:

I use Xit ( ftp://hobbes.nmsu.edu/pub/os2/util/wps/xit251.zip ), which adds the cut/paste buttons, task list and rollup buttons as well as the clock in the titlebar. The fancified close, minimize and maximize button graphics are from Stardock's Object Desktop 2.0.


February 15, 1999 - Here is a letter in regard to the February editorial "Is that a light at the end of the tunnel?" http://www.os2voice.org/VNL/past_issues/VNL0200H/vnewsf1.htm:

Sorry, Mark, but I don't think there is. It's more likely a tunnel at the end of the light.

I asked Steven King after SCOUG's Warpfest last year why IBM could not at least produce an updated install CD - cheap and easy enuff - and he passed on my request. I don't know if this helped or was filed in the Trash folder but I think what Esther reports is more than we might have expected. I am delighted because it will make it easier for me to soldier on - 8 years and still too ornery to give up OS/2!

We should really be thankful to the big OS/2 customers out there - those who manage to get Lou to come to the phone. Without them, OS/2 would have been dead and buried long ago.

The fact is that Gertner has decided that OS/2 is a marketing embarassment - the dowager they can't quietly drown in the moat - and too good a product to generate service income in any meaningful way. Windross NT/2000 is the reverse: it requires a high level of knowledge to make it work reliably - a few sites really do work! - and then is so maintenance intensive, there is much money to be made there.

Now Java looks increasingly an also-ran, Linux is the new big hope of breaking MStranglehold and Gerstner noticed it's both free and a bit too complex for ordinary folk (= more billable hours).

No light - just a bare bulb burning in the tunnel ... OS/2 is going away, slowly but away. Gerstner can't wait to bury it. He has no intention of giving anyone the source code as that would interfere with his plans for Windross and Linux.

Nicholas Avery

Editor's reply:

I can't disagree with what you say, but the fact is we are getting a new client. IBM won't call it that so they won't have to hurt any deals they have with the Devil, but from all that I hear, this will be a winner for OS/2 users.

It will certainly help me out a lot. Once we have this 'Refresh', I can again begin to advise people who are sick of microskank to give OS/2 a try. That is something I stopped doing a couple of years ago when IBM made it clear there would be no new client. Guess they lied on the client thing. Oh excuse me, corporate types don't lie, they merely react within the bounds of limited deniability. With age Warp 4 was not an easy install for newer hardware. A 'Refreshed' release will be a lot more forgiving, especially if they add in a version of the Scietech display driver. Though multimedia is still sadly lacking.

As to Gerstner, who knows. Maybe OS/2 will outdistance him yet. Only time will tell. Did you honestly believe as late as 2 months ago that you would ever see a new OS/2 client out of IBM of all places? Perhaps someone from IBM at the last Warpstock listened when people said that we wanted to support OS/2, but needed something to make Software Choice worth the subscription fee. If it were just the large corporate customers demanding this thing, they could have gone with IBM's 'WSeb as a client' deal.


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