Slate covers everything

Dr. Ernest N. Prabhakar (
Thu, 23 Apr 98 22:18:06 -0700

Well, I got my Slate umbrella today. In came in a beautiful long
cardboard box that would be perfect for posters. Rohit, did you get

It is nicely customized with "" and "Slate" -- nothing
unusual here in Silicon Valley.

The umbrella did cause me to reflect on our earlier discussion of
bundling evils. I wonder, would I have been offended if they'd offered
me a free web browser (assuming they weren't free already)? Probably.
Which is ironic, since a web browser is arguably more useful and relevant
than an umbrella, given the product I purchased from them (a Slate

Hmm, perhaps the issue is giving away hardware vs. software. In some
sense, giving away software cost effectively nothing per unit (ignoring
sunk R&D costs), so it is easier to think of it as dumping. Giving away
hardware - umbrellas - does involve actual cash, so it seems more self

Then again, what about Intel giving away PCs to higher education? Or,
say, cable comanies giving away DTV converters that don't work with DBS
satellites. That certainly would concern me. But for some reason, those
don't bother me as much.

Oh well,

Random anti-monopolistic ramblings.

-- Ernie P.

P.S. Did y'all notice Apple made more money than Compaq this quarter?
Not that I'm claiming credit or anything...