Thanks too, for the HTML dump...
I liked the essay- very clear, very easy reading, and if you fix it up, clean it up, and submit it to a business magazine (or one of those free computer magazines), I'd say it has a good chance of being picked up.
It's a tough choice on how to proceed when you're describing reverse engineering. On the one hand, everybody can empathize and understand your example of Word documents. On the other, Samba appears to be a much better example-
[...] Reverse engineering is essentially a fancy way of saying "figuring out how the program works." For example, a group of developers watched very closely while Windows computers accessed files across a network. By mimicking the responses they saw, they have created a program which is more efficient[*] than Windows itself at sharing files over a netork. This program is called "Samba", and allows files and printers to be shared between Windows and many variants of Unix, including Hewlitt Packard's HPUX, SCO-UnixWare, and the free operating system Linux.
Under the UCITA, this kind of reverse engineering would be illegal. [the UCITA would prevent people from using their eyes and ears to improve...etc...or something...your turn ;^)=]
[*]According to tests run by Sm@rt Reseller, Samba performance is approximately double that of Windows NT,
Whew... that's my stab at filling in that paragraph. Take it or leave it ;^)=
References for statistics: http://us3.samba.org/samba/whatsnew/ and http://www.zdnet.com/sr/stories/issue/0,4537,396321,00.html
...and you don't really even need to mention that StarOffice or Samba is free (beer or speech). Every stuffy shirt knows that competition is a good thing, but competition from something that is free can't really be beat. It kindof complicates the issue by throwing "open software" into a discussion about UCITA (or whatever that acronym is).
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