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Cookie & the USG

Aren't gardens nice?


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APPLE PARK WAY (Rixstep) — Years ago, many many years ago, the then-head of supremely powerful AOL had to travel to Redmond to have a mano-a-mano with William H Gates 3. The objective? Persuade Gates to put an AOL icon on the coming Windows 95 desktop.

An icon, you ask. A bloody icon?

Yes, a fucking icon.

Years later, we were asked by a web startup to help with the introduction of a Windows desktop applet. The startup provided all the graphics. They only needed to make the applet work.

All the applet was going to do was accept a single entry and then access an online web resource and display the results.

That was all. Literally all.

The applet got a big and favourable writeup in the IT media. Oh it's cute and brilliant, they wrote. Four stars out of four. Five stars out of five.

For a bloody applet as simple as that. Tells you something about IT journos.

But the web startup people were no dummies. Having an icon in the Windows system tray, with an applet that launched on a single cliek, and then whisked you away to their website: gold.

The head of AOL knew it too. Accessibility. It's all about accessibility.

Someone at Apple did their homework.

Having an App Store icon on the Apple desktop means everything. People click it. Fanboys click it twice. Yes it's a walled garden, but aren't gardens nice?

Google's control is more subtle. They remain a conduit. They don't constrict that much.

Apple constrict. They squeeze. Every last ounce and penny of extra revenue they can out of you, both the vendor and the consumer.

Yes, they have an excuse this time. Again. They're involved in an Epic lawsuit. They're making another company pay 30% of their revenues only because Apple have an icon on the desktop.

This can go two ways. The US government can come down on Apple and put Tim Cook's tiny huevos in the cracker. Or Cook can relent and watch a run on NASDAQ.

Jennifer Aniston can't help him much then.

See Also
Bloomberg (Archive): Apple to Skip App Store Hearing
Apple Forum (Archive): 'Xcode will damage your computer. Move it to trash.'
Keymaster: All your Apple are belong to us



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