Windows 10 S: The End of Free Range Software

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Microsoft wants this on your plate but not in your computer The high-tech industry is full of people opposed to GMOs and in favor of free range chickens, but when it comes to software, putting code in cages is currently all the rage. What we tend to think of as the modern software industry started in the 70s with the introduction of such units as the Apple II, Commodore PET,  Atari, Radio Shack’s Tandy systems and others. Software was sold to the masses in a physical package that typically consisted of a box, documentation, and the software itself, which was copied onto different form factors including cartridges, cassettes, floppies and now, in the rapidly shrinking world of retail shelfware, DVDs. By the 80s, a widespread two-tier distribution channel had come into existence to manage the process of shipping software to the market . The first tier consisted of distributors such as Ingram and others whose primary job was to break bulk, that is, ship heavy boxes of software to the second distribution tier. This consisted of resellers and retailers such as Egghead, Computerland, Computer City and others whose existence hasbeen consigned to history and the fading memories of those who...

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