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Microsoft Incompatible with Microsoft

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The link http://support.microsoft.com/kb/912265 shows how to make a microsoft product work with a microsoft product. In this case, it’s a Microsoft Exchange server sharing a calendar to a Microsoft Outlook or a Microsoft Entourage user. I thought these products should already work together, given that they are Mail Server and Mail Client.

It’s very difficult to maintain any sort of compatibility with another company, even when there is relatively tight communication.

It’s even difficult to maintain compatibility when there’s no sharing, communication, or agreement. It’s very much like hammering changes with set of tests, and looking for leakage.

It’s much more difficult when the two entities are competing providers.

When the compatibility issue is within the same company, within iterations of the same product, there’s no excuse.

International Life Earning me Persona-Non-Grata?

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I live in two countries; I travel into many: Canada, USA, Thailand, China, and UK. I carry one phone, and swap SIMs in when I enter a different country: 4 SIMs into one phone, but the UK one is “special”.

What’s the Apple ideal here? carry 5 separate phones?

Am I flirting with the risk of losing my Apple ID?

340x_iphonehack

I’m not some evil phone-cracker, and I pay for everything I have. Heck, I use bittorrent as a try-before-you-buy. I’ve purchased as many as 4 copies of software (hello, Starcraft) rather than cheat when I’m in the wrong country and need something.

Checking my system logs, Apple software itself has shaky behavior: warnings that it’s violated its own constraints, obsolete function-calls, etc. The cheap iPhone cable I picked up occasionally seems to disconnect (ie every time with the older phone, never with the newer)

Is it possible that my unlocked phone, plus one of Apple’s own errors, plus this cheesy cable, can brand me as a thief, cracker, all-around bad-guy?

Software Ecosystem: Whom to Blame?

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Apple makes a Web Browser called “Safari”, and a fairly well-known software product called “iTunes”, through which a user gets to the “iTunes Music Store” to download free or commercial content.

Apple also make a product-suite called iWork, which competes with Microsoft Office. For example, Pages competes with Microsoft Word.

Suppose Apple offered these products on Microsoft Windows — a direct competitor to their OS product, and a product which directly competes with their product on their competing OS. Whether “Pages” works smoothly, or doesn’t, that probably reflects poorly on the “Pages” product, and by allusion, whether all of Apple software is generally of good or poor quality.

If “Pages” tends to run very very well on Apple OSX, but poorly on Microsoft Windows, it probably implies that Windows has performance problems, and OSX is obviously the better OS to run things like the “Pages” application. That means that making “Pages” run well or poorly on the competing OS reflects on the perceived quality of the competing OS.

In short, Apple could make Windows look bad, and influence buyers over to OSX.

Does that seem fair? Who is really to blame? Doesn’t Apple have the obligation to at least adapt to the environment to which it’s writing software, and make it work? Isn’t that target environment really the foundation to which Apple has to make their product work? At the end of the day, the OS came before the application, so errors should be resolved in the application side.

Application errors are the application’s fault, not the OS. To claim otherwise gives reason to question the objectiveness of the auditor.

Same issue, but Microsoft making Office run on Mac. It runs poorly, hogs resources, and generally runs for short times without crashing. Obviously, this is Microsoft’s issue to deal with; to think otherwise implies a certain bias away from Apple.

Don't Use Epoch

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Epoch is the “our company in incapable of managing a version” admission; it’s the single most evil thing added to RPM, only to address a vendor’s internal issues with version numbers that always increase. With an actual plan for version numbers, epoch is never necessary. Now that it’s there, it’s a bonehead “easy way out” of having to solve a problem.

How logical is this:

$ sudo rpm -Uvh /home/repos/kludge/doxygen-1.6.0-1.i386.rpm
Preparing... ########################################### [100%]
package doxygen-1.4.7-1.1.i386 (which is newer than doxygen-1.6.0-1.i386) is already installed

Version 1.4.7 newer than version 1.6.0? It’s not logical. I’m assuming it’s because of Epoch, but Epoch data doesn’t show. Epoch is hidden, secret, and causes confusion like the confusion above.

…and really, once an epoch is set, it’s too easy just to bump it up, and that causes a complete scramble in the orderly, logical increase of version numbers.

The only way to cripple this is to choose the highest epoch number possible. That’s why my Epochs are maxint.

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