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The latest Gates video transcripts reveal a Zen-like state of hands-off management. Apparently...

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The bailiff in the Washington courtroom was hard-pressed yesterday to keep order - again, the Gates video extracts had the audience rolling in the aisles. As usual, as soon as the extracts were finished, the tape was rushed out of court to the waiting TV vans to be relayed to the nation, except that some channels may have found it necessary to bleep out a rude word. Gates has a lot of trouble over what he did or did not know about Microsoft Java development, and claims that he was not sure if J/Direct was being developed at Microsoft, at the time it was being developed there. And then there's the problem of what Ben Slivka meant when he sent Bill that email about urinating on things. Now read on… Boies: Mr. Gates, you've been sued by Sun Microsystems over Java, have you not? Gates: There's a lawsuit with Sun. Boies: Well, there's a lawsuit with Sun, and it's a lawsuit with Sun relating to the use of Java; right? Gates: It relates to a very specific contract that we have with Sun. Boies: And does that very specific contract with Sun relate to Java? Gates: It's a license to various Sun technologies related to Java. Boies: Now, you're familiar with that lawsuit, are you not, sir? Gates: Not very. Boies: Not very? Do you know what the contentions in that lawsuit are? Gates: No. (End of segment: 75 lines omitted) Boies: Did you ever try to find that out? Gates: What? Boies: What the claims were more than your present knowledge. Gates: I read something that was on our Web site about four days ago. Boies: About the Sun lawsuit? Gates: Yeah. Bob Muglia had some statements. Boies: Other than that, did you ever try to find out what Microsoft is being charged with, what they're alleged to have done wrong? Gates: I've had discussions with Maritz saying: Do I need to learn about this lawsuit? Do I need to spend a lot of time on it? Boies: What did he say? Gates: He said, no, he's focussed on that and I can focus on other things. Boies: Is one of the things that you're focussed on trying, in Mr. Slivka's words, to wrest control or get control, if wrest is a word that you don't like, of Java away from Sun? Gates: No. (End of segment: 7 pages omitted) Boies: Isn't it a fact, Mr. Gates, that in addition to whatever other reasons you say you had for what you did with Java and Windows APIs, part of what you were trying to do was to prevent Java from having a wide enough distribution so that it could support programs that could be used on platforms other than Windows? Gates: We had no way of preventing Java from being used on other platforms. It is used on other platforms. Boies: That wasn't my question, sir. My question is whether or not part of what you and Microsoft was trying to do was to limit the distribution of Java sufficiently so that you could thereby limit or reduce the extent to which applications were written that could be used on platforms other than Windows. Gates: No. In fact, we sell the most popular Java tools in the market. Boies: It is your testimony, then, sitting here, that Microsoft was not at all motivated by a desire to limit the extent to which Java could be used to develop applications programming that could be used on platforms other than Microsoft's Windows? Is that your testimony? Gates: Yes. (End of segment: 1 page omitted) Boies: Did Microsoft believe that Netscape's browser was a means of distributing Java API? Gates: Well, Netscape had some APIs in its browser. I'm not sure if you would refer to them as Java APIs or not. Boies: It's not a question whether I would refer to them that way or not, Mr. Gates.- what I'm asking you is what you and Microsoft believe. And my question is: Did you and others at Microsoft believe that Netscape's browser was a method for distributing Java APIs? Gates: There were APIs in the Netscape browser. I don't think they were strictly Java APIs or even in a direct sense specifically. Boies: Have you completed your answer, sir? Gates: Uh-huh. Boies: Can I have the question read back again? [The following question was read: Boies: It's not a question whether I would refer to them that way or not, Mr. Gates. What I'm asking you is what you and Microsoft believe. And my question is: Did you and others at Microsoft believe that Netscape's browser was a method for distributing Java APIs?] Boies: Can you tell me that, sir? Gates: There were APIs in Netscape browser some of which under some definition of Java APIs you'd call Java APIs. Boies: And was there concern within Microsoft that the distribution of these things that you say could be called Java APIs would adversely affect Microsoft? Gates: Our concern is always to get people to develop Windows applications. And to the degree that there's other APIs people to develop to, there's some competition for the attention of developers and focussing on those APIs. But that doesn't relate to distribution. Boies: Can I have my question read back again, please? [The following question was read: Boies: And was there concern within Microsoft that the distribution of these things that you say could be called Java APIs would adversely affect Microsoft?] Boies: Could I have an answer to that question, please, sir? Gates: No, not the distribution. Boies: Let me ask you to look at a document that has been previously marked as Government Exhibit 514. The first message in this exhibit is an email from Paul Maritz to you and a number of other people dated July 14, 1997; correct, sir? Gates: That's what it appears to be, yes. Boies: Did you receive this e-mail, sir? Gates: I don't remember it. But I don't have any reason to doubt that I did. Boies: Mr. Maritz writes to you in the third sentence, "If we look further at Java/JFC being our major threat, then Netscape is the major distribution vehicle." Do you see that, sir? Gates: Uh-huh. Boies: Do you recall Mr. Maritz telling you in words or in substance that Netscape was the major distribution vehicle for the Java/JFC threat to Microsoft? Gates: No. Boies: Did you believe in July of 1997 that Java/JFC was a major threat to Microsoft as Mr. Maritz writes here? Gates: It was a significant issue for his group in terms of how ISVs would choose to focus their development in the future. Boies: Did you believe in July of 1997 that Java/JFC was a major threat to Microsoft? Gates: In the form that it existed as of that day, maybe not. But if we looked at how it might be evolved in the future, we did think of it as something that competed with us for the attention of ISVs in terms of whether or not they would take advantage of the advanced features of Windows. (End of segment: 2 pages omitted) Boies: Now, in a prior answer you said you didn't understand how the browser was a distribution vehicle. Does this refresh your recollection that at least within Microsoft in July of 1997 Netscape was viewed as the major distribution vehicle for Java? Gates: Not for Java. And in my view, the browser wasn't a key distribution channel. Maritz may or may not have agreed with that. But you can always ship the runtime with the applications. Boies: Mr. Maritz here says, "Netscape is the major distribution vehicle." Now, it's clear to you, is it not, sir, that he means the major distribution vehicle for Java and Java Foundation Classes? Gates: He doesn't mean for Java. Boies: Well, sir, he says - Gates: I told you many times about the use of the word "Java." And I'm not sure you heard me. When people use the word "Java," they don't mean just Java. Boies: So when Mr. Maritz here used the word "Java," in this email that you say you don't recall receiving, you're telling me that he meant something other than just Java? Gates: He -- I bet he meant some runtime APIs, not Java. Boies: Okay. Let's assume that you're right, let's assume that when he talks about Java he means Java runtime APIs. Would you then agree that what he is saying here is that Netscape is the major distribution vehicle for Java runtime APIs and Java Foundation Classes? Gates: That appears to be what he's saying in this email. (End of segment: 2 pages omitted) Boies: Let me ask you to look at a document that has been marked as Government Exhibit 256. This is an email to you from Tod Nielsen dated August 25 1997, with copies to Brad Chase. Did you receive this email, sir? Gates: I don't remember receiving it. But I don't have any reason to doubt that I did. Boies: Let me ask you to look at the seventh paragraph down. That's the third paragraph from the bottom, the last sentence. That says, "So, we are just pro-actively trying to put obstacles in Sun's path and get anyone that wants to write in Java to use J/Direct and target Windows directly". Do you see that, sir? Gates: Uh-huh. Boies: Do you recall being told in or about August of 1997 that Microsoft was trying to put obstacles in Sun's path and get anyone that wants to write in Java: to use J/Direct and target Windows directly? Gates: No. Boies: Do you know why Microsoft was trying to put, "obstacles in Sun's path"? Gates: I don't know what that means. Boies: Do you know why Microsoft was trying to get anyone that wants to write in Java to use J/Direct? Gates: Yes. Boies: Why was that? Gates: Because J/Direct allows you to make calls that show off unique innovations in Windows and make, therefore, make Windows more attractive. (End of segment: 1 page omitted) Boies: What is J/Direct? Gates: J/Direct is a way of allowing Java language code to call native OS functionality. It's a fairly clever thing that we have done. And others now use that term to refer to it when they let their OS functionality show through as well. (End of segment: 17 lines omitted) Boies: Why was J/Direct developed by Microsoft? Gates: To make is easy for people who choose the Java language to call the unique runtime features in various operating systems including Windows. Boies: Why do you want people to write in J/Direct as opposed to Java? Gates: They are writing in Java. You only use J/Direct if you write in Java. Boies: Well, what Mr. Nielsen says is that Microsoft is trying to get anyone that wants to write in Java to use J/Direct. Do you see that? Gates: That's right. And that means writing in Java. Boies: And why do you want to get anyone who wants to write in Java to use J/Direct? Gates: Because that gives them a way of calling unique Windows APIs that allow us to show off the innovative features in Windows. (End of segment: 10 lines omitted) Boies: My question is why you were trying to get program developers, independent programming people, to use J/Direct. Why were you trying to get them to do that? Heiner [A Microsoft lawyer]: Certainly asked and answered. Gates: Because it allows them to get at the unique API functionality that's in the Windows product and show off the innovations that we do there. Boies: But you didn't have to? Gates: Tell me some other way. Boies: Well, I'm asking you. If you tell me that that's what you say is the only way that you could think of for them to do it, that's your testimony. I don't get to testify here. If I did, there would have been a lot of things I would have said along the way. But since I don't get to testify, all I get to do is ask you questions. And my question to you is whether there was a way, that you were aware of at the time, to let people see all of what you refer to as the functionality of Windows without getting people to write to what you refer to here to use J/Direct if they wanted to write in Java. Gates: J/Direct is exactly the work we did to make it possible and reasonable for people writing in Java to call the unique Windows APIs. Boies: Have you finished your answer? Gates: Yes. Boies: Okay. Now, were you aware of other ways of accomplishing the same result that you considered and rejected at the time? Gates: What time is that? Boies: The time that you developed J/Direct. Gates: We don't know what that time is. Boies: Well, you may not know the exact year. But do you know that when--were you aware when J/Direct was being developed within Microsoft? Were you aware of it at the time? Gates: I'm not sure. Boies: Did you know it was being developed? Gates: I'm not sure. Boies: Did you have any discussions about the development of J/Direct? Gates: I was not involved in the design of J/Direct. Boies: I'm not asking you whether you were involved in the design of J/Direct. I'm asking you whether you were aware at the time that J/Direct was being developed that it was being developed? Gates: I'm not sure. Boies: Did you ever have any discussions with anyone about the development of J/Direct at or about the time it was being developed? Gates: I don't think so. Boies: At the time that J/Direct was being developed, did you know that people were trying to develop J/Direct? Gates: It's just a thunk. Boies: My question is: Did you know that they were trying to develop this thunk? Gates: I doubt it. Boies: Did you participate at all in any discussions as to what alternatives there were to the development of J/Direct? Gates: Before it was developed? Boies: Let's start with before it was developed. Gates: No, I don't think so. Boies: What about during the time it was being developed? Gates: I don't think so. Boies: How about after it was developed? Gates: I don't think so. (End of segment: 12 lines omitted) Boies: Let me show you a document that has been previously marked as Government Exhibit 253. In the middle of the first page there is a message dated May 14, 1997, from Ben Slivka to you and others. Did you receive this email on or about May 14, 1997? Gates: I'm not sure. But I have no reason to doubt that I did. Boies: When Mr. Slivka writes as he does in the second paragraph, "This summer we're going to totally divorce Sun," do you know what he's referring to? Gates: I'm not sure. Boies: Did you ever ask him what he was referring to? Gates: No. Boies: In the next to last, or in the last sentence, actually, in the last sentence of the second paragraph, Mr. Slivka writes that "JDK 1.2 has JFC." And is the JFC there the Java Foundation Classes that you referred to earlier? Gates: It's one of the many JFCs. Boies: What is one of the many JFCs? Gates: The one in JDK 1.2. Boies: Is the JFC in JDK 1.2 part of what was described as a major threat to Microsoft? Gates: I have no idea which JFC that sentence written by somebody other than me referred to. Boies: Well, the sentence written by somebody other than you was written to you; right, sir? Gates: It was sent to me. Boies: Yes. And it was sent to you by one of your chief, one of your top executives; correct, sir? Gates: In an email. Boies: Yes. And that's a frequent way that your top executives communicate with you; correct, sir? Gates: Yes. Boies: Now, Mr. Slivka here says that Microsoft is going to be saying uncomplimentary things about JDK 1.2 at every opportunity. Do you see that? Gates: Where's that? Boies: That is, "JDK 1.2 has JFC, which we're going to be pissing on at every opportunity." Gates: I don't know if he's referring to pissing on JFC or pissing on JDK 1.2 nor do I know is what he specifically means by "pissing on." Boies: Well, do you know that generally he means by pissing on he's going to be saying and Microsoft is going to be saying uncomplimentary things. Gates: He might mean that we're going to be clear that we're not involved with it, that we think there's a better approach. Boies: Well, as you understand it, when Mr. Slivka says he's going to be pissing on JDK 1.2, as you seem to interpret it, at every opportunity, do you interpret that as meaning that Microsoft is going to be saying uncomplimentary things about JDK 1.2? Gates: I told you I don't know whether pissing applies to JFC or JDK. Boies: Well, he's going to be pissing on or Microsoft is going to be pissing on either JDK 1.2 or JFC or both according to Mr. Slivka. Is that at least fair? Gates: That's appears to be what the sentence says. Boies: Yeah. And as the chief executive officer of Microsoft, when you get these kind of e-mails, would it be fair for me to assume that "pissing on" is not some code word that means saying nice things about you, that has the usual meaning that it would in the vernacular? Gates: I don't know what you mean in this kind of email. Boies: The kind of email that is sent to you by executives in the course of your business, Mr. Gates. Gates: So all emails I get? Ben Slivka's not an executive. Boies: All the emails you get from people telling you that they're going to piss on competitive products, that's what I'm talking about. Gates: I don't remember mail like that. it looks like I got one. But believe me, it's not a term that's commonly used. Boies: But you have no reason to think that he means it in any way other than the normal meaning of that term, do you, sir? Gates: I think it's a term of multiple meanings. In this case I think it means what you've suggested it means. ® Complete Register trial coverage

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