Paul Thurrott: you got it wrong

published Aug 10, 2006, last modified Jun 26, 2013

Over at Paul Thurrott's SuperSite for Windows, Paul just criticized Steve for being overly zealous with its Leopard features.

Paul: you're wrong, at least on one count -- I'm too lazy to take the rest of the article apart. But, do I hear you ask, on what count?
Spotlight. He continually insinuates that Spotlight was an idea lifted off Windows Search. He's completely wrong. Spotlight was lifted off Beagle and Dashboard (not the technology, but the idea, and no, I'm not talking about Apple Dashboard), both technologies that were available as production releases a bit later than Spotlight (and way earlier than any Microsoft technology), which is fairly understandable considering the corresponding manpower allotted to the competing engineering projects.

Two quotes. The first:

First, the guy was funny. And he made some good points. But he stepped over the line, of course. He said that Microsoft was ripping off Spotlight with Windows Search in Vista, which in fact, had been developed and publicly discussed long before Spotlight ever saw the light. (To be clear, Apple borrowed that one from Microsoft, but implemented it much more quickly.)

Paul: Apple did not borrow that from Microsoft at all. Beagle was already under way, and the idea was floating around before that. Now, here's the second quote.

[...] Gee, Spotlight still seems an awful lot like Windows Search.

Yes, it's out of context. But, Paul, you're coming off as a Windows fanatic here. If anything, it's the other way around: Windows Search looks a lot like Spotlight. Which, by the way, doesn't look like Beagle at all (and that's not necessarily a bad thing), but sports analogous underlying technology.

Yes, modern releases of Beagle also let you start applications up as they're included in the search results shell.

Moreover, the rest of your article dares to pooh-pooh the efforts laid out in Apple's products, saying things like:

  • By that measure, Microsoft has improved Windows by a far greater degree -- The disputable fact that they've accomplished this is only a testament to the amount of money the can pour into engineering projects.
  • That means that OS X will finally do what Windows XP x64 Edition did last year: Run 32-bit and 64-bit applications natively, side-by-side. -- Paul, did you conveniently forget they changed from PPC to IA32? By the way, Linux has had this for years now. Oh, yes, Linux runs in at least ten times the architectures Windows ever did.
  • It looks silly, but maybe that's just me. -- Definitely, it's just you.
  • Apple is integrating applications [...] Sorry, but this is hardly impressive. -- Please, show me which applications Windows integrates, besides WordPad, Calculator and Sol.exe.
  • About Core Animation: Clearly, it was thrown out as a bone to the developer-heavy crowd. -- Much like Avalon.

How convenient.

I don't blame you, Paul. You just didn't do your homework throughly. But that's the problem of people who live in an endogamic monoculture. They don't really know what's going on out there, and they suffer from belief overkill.

And Beagle still beats everyone hands down.