Re: TBTF for 1/19/98: With a whimper

Gil Rimon (
Tue, 20 Jan 1998 06:06:59 +0200

> This article is copyright 1998 by EM Ganin <> and is
published here with permission.

> > At least for the Israeli market, I think that Microsoft earned
> > its monopoly position by spending the time and resources to
> > offer fully localized applications that easily integrate into
> > the OS.
> [6]

Haha, as we say in Israel. Ha-Ha-Ha.
Mr. Ganin has a point - Windows is very popular here, in Israel. However, a
close examination of the market would have shown him something like 50% of
the software in Israel is pirated, and windows is THE most popular theft.
Before the internet era Israel was called "a one disk country" and by all
means it should still be related as such. What Israelis do buy, in tons, are
writable CD's. I'm not kidding - this product is a best seller here.

All my friends use Microsoft Office. Neither of them ever bought that
software. This phenomena, which has nothing to be proud of I guess, is
striking not only private people but institutions, companies and even the
Israeli army. In my last reserves service, 6 months ago, I have seen so many
unregistered applications I couldn't stop laughing. I must admit I was quite
happy with this. The Israeli branch of Microsoft gives the programmers here
a very hard time.

It is true the BiDi issue is troubling Microsoft, but it's for other
reasons - good solutions for it will lead to the Arab market. Israel,
everybody should know, is a very big software producer and a very small
software buyer.

And in the case of the Windows95 Hebrew implementation, I admit not one
Israeli Shekel should be spent. The Hebrew GUI crashes much more than the
English one, and all the BiDi concept fails.

Just a strange example for funny stuff here. When an (unregistered) Israeli
programmer tries to make a shortcut to his (unregistered) 4dos shell on his
(unregistered) Hebrew Windows, he gets a "dos4" label. No matter how hard he
tries, it just doesn't work. Why? Nobody knows.

Oh, and another point. Israeli "Microsoft Solution Providers" often feel
cheated - They pay thousands of dollars to get a very bad service from the
Israeli branch. At most cases Microsoft support teams know less than the
average programmer here about Windows generally and about BiDi issues

Written using Outlook Express WITH NO HEBREW SUPPORT AT ALL. But I guess we
should only blame ourselves for choosing such a strange language.
Gil Rimon
ICQ 109928