Quote: Originally Posted by MrMephitis
Quote: Originally Posted by logicearth
Maybe Microsoft is using them as a form of free labor?
To market there product and hook people, kinda smart you know.
One of the Microsoft bigwigs have pretty much stated this, they would rather people use a pirated version of their software than that of the opposition, reasoning that a) it increases 'market share', and b) it gives them an opportunity to wean them off of a pirated version and on to a paid version.
Don't forget also
c) gives MS a chance to fix security holes for the next release / service pack
d) greatly expands the FREE testing user base. Individuals can stress test a product much much better than a few selected "officy" type bods just barely using the most elementary features of the software.
Some of these "unofficial" users will use the product in ways that MS or the original developers never even THOUGHT of. Particularly in things like collabaration / sharing. Most offices are PARANOID about most forms of sharing
For example IBM uses that really HIDEOUS product LOTUS NOTES which must be the worst abomination since the Internet was invented, whilst other corporations tend to use really cludgy get arounds such as shared disks , badly put together intranet sites and "help desk" type software.
A lot of the collaboration stuff in newer versions of office arose directly out of individuals who are used to File sharing, P2P connections, real time messaging etc etc.
Some firms are just beginning to start using this stuff but still oh so slowly.
MS hasn't really made any big time prosecutions to individuals using pirate copies and torrent sites are still operating in spite of some biased movie studio paid Swedish judge.
(Please note I'm NOT advocating Piracy here but like most things it's not 100% EVIL or 100% GOOD either).
Mr Steve Jobs of Apple might like to consider how HE got started. I'm sure loads of copies of MSDOS and IBM DOS left the work place as well as early versions of Windows -- I still have the source code of WIN/386 which was never officially released but was the pre-cursor to the first passable working version of Windows - 3.0 ---much improved in 3.11 (Windows for Workgroups).
Here's one for "Conspiracy Theorists".
How do we know that Microsoft itself doesn't have a Torrent site itself for doing exactly this type of research. If it did it's hardly likely to publicize it is it.
Just think of the FREE info it could get if it was interested, and would be pay back time if ever the EU decided to have another go at MS with those silly browser or other requests.