Re: Quotes

Gregory Alan Bolcer (
Wed, 30 Dec 1998 10:54:46 -0800

Michael Stutz wrote:
> On Tue, 29 Dec 1998, Robert Harley wrote:
> > Well FoRK is so quiet these days that I might as well inject two
> > quotes for your enjoyment.

Why not spam the list too. Here's my contribution courtesy of
GMSV. Mostly Microsoft quotes. My favorite are always Ellison
quotes. How can somebody so rich be so stupid? Speaking of
which, the top ten object oriented environment failures? Taligent
and Sedona rank up there. I'll have to dust off my email archives
to find the rest.


(Online News, 12/24/98 02:20 PM)

Here's what they said
By Clare Haney

As another year draws to a close, we thought it might be fun to
trawl back through the archives of the past 12 months and bring
you the best quotes from the movers and shakers in the IT

The golden throats include the usual suspects folks such as
Bill Gates, Larry Ellison and Scott McNealy in their full,
outspoken glory. And there are other familiar faces from the past
year, pontificating on a variety of topics and giving responses
that range from the erudite to the public relations
nightmare. We can only hope for more of the same in 1999.

Take your best shot

"We really need it because Microsoft keeps releasing sloppier
and sloppier software that needs a faster and faster machine.
The speed is crazy." Digital Equipment Corp. founder and
former CEO Ken Olsen, who now heads Modular Solutions
Inc., when asked if he believes that the world truly needs
ever-faster microprocessors capable of operating at speeds that
users might not actually need. (June 24)

"Microsoft is now talking about the digital nervous system. I
guess I would be nervous if my system was built on their
technology too." Sun Microsystems Inc. Chairman, President
and CEO Scott McNealy. (Nov. 4)

Mea culpa

"Right now, we have a terrible Web site." Unisys Corp. CEO
Lawrence Weinbach. (March 11)

"I made a stupid mistake." Oracle Corp. Chairman and CEO
Larry Ellison, in a rare moment of humility, as he spoke about
Oracle's abortive Sedona object-oriented development
environment project, which he canceled. (April 16)

"We get accused of being good marketers. I think we are a bad
marketing company. We've managed through our bad execution
to make everyone think we are going into their business. There's
a very real fear and loathing [of Microsoft's move into electronic
commerce]." Anthony Bay, Microsoft's general manager for
the vendor's Internet Services Business Unit. (June 25)

"Yeah, I'm already a pain in the butt. But these guys [Motorola]
are really good. They like controversy." Philippe Kahn,
founder of Borland International Inc., speaking about Motorola
Inc.'s purchase of Starfish Software Inc., the company he
launched after leaving Borland, and his new role as a senior
advisor to Motorola's CEO office. (July 14)

Microsoft v. Sun

"If we don't go to the courts, you don't have the compatibility,
you don't have 100% Java. And that's why we're doing it."
Scott McNealy on why Sun took Microsoft to court over Java.
(March 25)

"That was not one of the most pleasant experiences I've ever
been through." Alan Baratz, president of Sun's Java software
group, as he left the courtroom after being grilled by Microsoft
lawyers for almost an hour over details of Sun's Java licensing
contract with Microsoft. (Sept. 10)

"This scares the hell out of me." Microsoft Chairman and
CEO Bill Gates' feelings about Java, at least according to
documents filed by Sun in the legal case between the two
companies. (Oct. 22)

A glimpse into the mind of Bill Gates

"The mentality of Microsoft is to always look for what we should
be worried about. We all have to earn our success a month at a
time. Even though there is no financial crisis, we are very good at
creating a crisis atmosphere." Microsoft CEO Bill Gates
(Feb. 3)

"[Sun CEO] Scott McNealy is always talking about Microsoft.
Sometimes when you listen to him, you forget what company he
comes from. ... Hey, he is spreading the word that he is worried
about Microsoft." Bill Gates (Feb. 3)

"The higher you get, the farther there is to fall. ... Just because
something is in a Windows box doesn't mean it will be
successful." Bill Gates (Sept. 9)

"I worshipped Digital when I was a kid." Bill Gates (Sept. 9)

"We [Microsoft] don't want to live through that." Bill Gates
on Digital after it was eclipsed by other industry players. (Sept.

The Apple of Steve's eye

"At the end of 10 years [at Apple], I have to admit that I failed.
In hindsight, we should have done things differently ... and it is
tremendous disappointment." Former Apple Computer Inc.
CEO and current technology investor John Sculley on his Apple
tenure in the 1980s and early 1990s. (Jan. 12)

"Apple is a cult, and the person who created that cult is Steve
[Jobs]. ... It was always [Jobs'] company. The best chance
Apple has is having Steve Jobs back, running the company."
John Sculley (Jan. 12)

"We tried begging, bribing, everything. This is not subtle. We
have gotten on our knees collectively on this." Apple board
member Larry Ellison about trying to persuade Jobs to stay as
Apple CEO. (Jan. 15). As of Dec. 16, Jobs remains Apple's
interim CEO.

"Nobody's tried to swallow us since I've been here. I think
they're afraid of how we'd taste." Steve Jobs, Apple's
co-founder and interim CEO, brushing off suggestions that his
company may be a merger target. (April 22)

"I go to computer shops and hang around and listen to people. I
find it fascinating. I know it sounds corny, but the biggest kick I
get is to see people smiling when they see the iMac. You don't
usually see a lot of people smiling in computer stores."
Jonathan Ives, vice president of Apple's Industrial Design Group
and head of the team that designed the IMac. (Sept. 17)

Looking for a new job

"I would tender my resignation. We'd make him an offer in a
flash." Oracle CEO Larry Ellison on what Mitchell Kertzman,
then co-CEO and chairman of Sybase Inc., should do to turn
around Sybase's fortune. (Oct. 13). Less than a month later,
Kertzman joined Oracle spinoff Network Computer Inc. (NCI)
as its president and CEO a job Kertzman insisted he
wouldn't have taken if he weren't convinced that NCI is a
separate entity from Oracle.

"Many people in Microsoft say that Ellison is the single best
salesman for [our] SQL Server. If users are thinking Oracle and
then Microsoft at No. 2, I'm a happy person." Rich Tong,
vice president of applications product management, applications
and tools group at Microsoft. (Dec. 15)

Failed dreams

"We're not naive businesspeople. I would just stand on my
record. ... We are doing very well with or without CSC and will
continue to do very well with or without CSC." Charles
Wang, CEO of Computer Associates International Inc., when
his firm's hostile bid to take over Computer Sciences Corp. fell
apart. (Feb. 25)

"The PC has become a junk truck of technology. We just keep
adding things to it." Pat Gelsinger, vice president and general
manager of Intel Corp.'s desktop products group. (Sept. 17)

Y2K: Don't panic ... yet

"We don't have a set of formal recommendations. What U.S.
Sen. Bennett has been saying publicly is that it wouldn't hurt to
have a few days of food on hand, a little bit of cash." Don
Meyer, spokesman for the U.S. Senate Special Committee on
the Year 2000 Problem, which is headed by Utah Republican
Bob Bennett. (Dec. 14)

"Let me put to rest the rumor that missiles are going to be flying
everywhere by accident." John Koskinen, U.S. President
Clinton's year 2000 czar, who has pledged to be on an airplane
as the millennium rolls in. (Dec. 14)

"He won't be heading for the hills. But on the other hand, he
won't be doing what John Koskinen said he's going to do. ... He
won't be in the seat next to him." Meyer on Bennett's year
2000 plans. (Dec. 14)

Crystal-ball gazing

"We can remove the constraints of distance and time by using
the electronic networking of people. ... You can't 'beam me up,'
but you can be there electronically." Dave House, Bay
Networks Inc. chairman, CEO and president, on his concept of
a "network holodeck of the future." (June 8)

"The cost of PCs is getting so low, we will probably give you a
PC so you will use our browser." Marc Andreessen,
executive vice president and co-founder of Netscape
Communications Corp. (June 25)

"The time has come to think beyond the Earth." Vinton Cerf,
one of the fathers of the Internet and senior vice resident at MCI
Communications Corp., on the creation of an "Internet that is out
of this world." (July 22)

"We'll get machines that are a million times faster over the next
10 years. ... The key message here is that we are just at the
beginning of the revolution today's machines are Model Ts."
Bill Gates (Sept. 7)

"I think Sun and Microsoft will be totally changed in the future.
You can take half the people at Microsoft and half the people at
Sun and write them off." John Gage, chief scientist at Sun
(Sept. 9)

"We are on the cusp of this time where I can say, 'I speak as a
citizen of the world,' without others saying, 'God, what a nut.'...
The single unifying force should be that we govern ourselves."
Lawrence Lessig, cyberspace law authority (Oct. 10)

"Everyone will have an average of five [Internet Protocol]
objects on their body by 2000. There will even be digital
eyeglasses with voice control that eventually would offer all sorts
of information to the wearer. ... Sony is working on the
technology, so it'll happen. It'll cost $20." John Sidgmore,
vice chairman and chief operating officer at MCI WorldCom
Inc., on a future world awash with what he terms "silicon
cockroaches" wireless devices that can communicate with
each other and the Internet. (Nov. 18)

What it all means

"The whole world's gone crazy because all of the software and
all of the marketing are run by people who've never operated a
business. ...The first problem is to try to get people to organize
[businesses] with wisdom, with common sense." Digital's
Ken Olsen (June 24)

Kristi Essick, James Niccolai, Jana Sanchez-Klein and
Nancy Weil contributed to this story.