Feeds

IEEE admits its MS-DOS history revisionist is in Microsoft's pay

CP/M, QDOS diff man is Redmond 'expert witness'

The essential guide to IT transformation

The IEEE's Spectrum magazine has admitted that a recent contributor, who wrote an eyebrow-raising revisionist history of MS-DOS, is paid by Microsoft.

Eagle-eyed readers have spotted that the notorious article about the development of Microsoft's early operating system, which we discussed here, is now prefaced with the following message:

Editor’s Note: Upon publication, this article failed to properly disclose the connection between its author, Bob Zeidman, and Microsoft Corp., a key subject of the story. Mr. Zeidman is currently retained by Microsoft as an expert witness in Motorola Mobility v. Microsoft. IEEE Spectrum regrets the omission.

In what purported to be a "forensic" investigation of MS-DOS lineage, using his own glorified diff grep software analyser, Zeidman compared the source code of 1970s operating system CP/M and QDOS, the latter a CP/M clone that Microsoft acquired to create MS-DOS.

Unsurprisingly, Zeidman found no matches of identical code in the rival software; there was no smoking gun that indicated one was a direct copy of the other. His report made derogatory remarks about CP/M author Gary Kildall, such as the suggestion that he committed suicide. In fact, Kildall died three days after a late-night fall in a bar, in which time he was admitted to hospital, and discharged, twice.

In his 2005 book They Made America, former Sunday Times editor Sir Harold Evans gave the first comprehensive account of the saga in a profile of the late Kildall. He concluded that QDOS was a "rip off" of CP/M. QDOS author Tim Paterson sued for defamation and lost. Paterson has always denied using Digital Research's CP/M source code to create QDOS. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
The Return of BSOD: Does ANYONE trust Microsoft patches?
Sysadmins, you're either fighting fires or seen as incompetents now
Munich considers dumping Linux for ... GULP ... Windows!
Give a penguinista a hug, the Outlook's not good for open source's poster child
Intel's Raspberry Pi rival Galileo can now run Windows
Behold the Internet of Things. Wintel Things
Linux Foundation says many Linux admins and engineers are certifiable
Floats exam program to help IT employers lock up talent
Microsoft cries UNINSTALL in the wake of Blue Screens of Death™
Cache crash causes contained choloric calamity
Eat up Martha! Microsoft slings handwriting recog into OneNote on Android
Freehand input on non-Windows kit for the first time
Linux kernel devs made to finger their dongles before contributing code
Two-factor auth enabled for Kernel.org repositories
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 10 endpoint backup mistakes
Avoid the ten endpoint backup mistakes to ensure that your critical corporate data is protected and end user productivity is improved.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Rethinking backup and recovery in the modern data center
Combining intelligence, operational analytics, and automation to enable efficient, data-driven IT organizations using the HP ABR approach.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.