Topic: Operating Systems
I came across an article on the web, and I just felt the need to discuss it. Some of you will have no interest, because it deals with computers; however, it also deals with journalistic integrity and the fact that just because someone writes something in an official looking form, doesn't make it true.
You can read the article here. The article comes from eWeek.com, which I read often and generally find to be a decent news source. This particular article, however, should never have seen the light of day.
The article is a supposed comparison of Tiger and Vista. It purports to show the strengths and weaknesses of one compared to the other. But in truth, it is a bunch of nonsense, and I will happily tell you why.
Tiger is the name of the current Macintosh operating system (OS). It's official name is Mac OS X 10.4. Vista, which until recently was known as Longhorn, is the supposed next version of the Windows OS. The expectation is that Vista will begin shipping around the end of 2006, or early 2007. Do you see the problem? Tiger is a current product, which is being used now. It has been shipping for several months now. I don't know what the current numbers are, but as of the middle of June, over two million copies had been shipped. Tiger is a real product, being used by millions of people (including moi) right now in the real world. Vista, on the other hand, is what is known as vaporware. It doesn't exist. It may or may not start being used sometime in the next 18 months. Possibly. If you keep up on these sorts of issues, you know that Microsoft keeps removing features from it. Once upon a time (which is an apt phrase because, as of now, Vista is a fairy tale), Microsoft said their next OS would contain all these supercool features. As the months have dragged on, however, Microsoft keeps announcing that this and that feature will not actually be in Vista when and if it ever shows up.
Getting back to my original point. The author of the article compared a real, live, being used right now product to something which doesn't exist. He compared real features of Tiger, a real OS that exists right now, to alleged features of Vista, which only exist in a press release, thereby pretending that Vista really exists and really offers these features.
To put this another way, suppose you were talking with someone today, and they said, "The 2007 Toyotas are way better than 2005 Hondas." Would you think they knew what they were talking about? Now you see my point.