Thursday, August 14, 2003

At least one Microsoft manager's take open standards
ZDNet: “IMAP is just not a very rich protocol,” Steve Conn, Exchange Server product manager, told ZDNet Australia during the company's Tech Ed conference.

I'll translate: IMAP isn't that great you see, so we recommend you jump over to our MAPI protocol. Sure MAPI has driven the competition crazy with its somewhat open (but not quite enough to really compete) mentality. But, how do you think we make Exchange purr like a kitten?

We at Microsoft built our kingdom on open standards and now we're making the next logical move: bringing the keys to the kingdom back inside where they're safe. Hey, it's not just my group that is doing this! Go look at the Internet Explorer guys or maybe even the .Net guys. The .Net guys are way worse than we are. They actually have people believing that .Net is an open standard. People think projects like Mono and DotGNU have our blessing — ha! Sure, the CLR is open and so is C#, but not our sacred APIs that make the .Net framework special. No, those APIs are staying inside the kingdom. So, as you can see, the .Net guys here at Microsoft are really the worst offenders. They'll get you about half way to the finish line before they pull the rug out from underneath you. At least with my team (Exchange), we pretty much let you know that MAPI is open but not really. We make no claims that we won't change the “standard” once someone gets close to making it useful for their own product. You see, those of us on the Exchange team are really the only honest ones in the kingdom! We hate open standards and we'll tell you like it is. Our stuff rocks, open standards that have helped make the Internet what it is today suck. The end.
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The Colonel