Let’s all take a deep breath and get some perspective

So everyone is worked up about this new browser operating system from Google. Drudge apparently has gone off his meds again and calls it a “death blow” to the Borg. No spinning red light, but still, pretty over the top. I guess it’s supposedly going to destroy us too — like we’re some kind of collateral damage. Man oh man. Where to begin?

First of all, nobody seems to appreciate how goddamn hard it is to make an operating system. You don’t just wake up one day and fall out of bed and make one. Not even the smarty pants kiddies at Google can do that. These things take years. Decades, even. Ours started out 20 years ago, at NeXT. You could say it goes back to 1977, with the BSD guys. Heck, you could even say it goes back to 1969 with Dennis Thompson and Lionel Ritchie. Even Windows is — what? Twenty years old? Something like that. For that matter, look at Linux. Correct me if I’m wrong — and I’m sure you fucking freetards will find something to correct — but I think Linus Tordalv started working on Linux back in 1991 when he was a high school student in his native Denmark. That’s nearly twenty years ago, and the shit still doesn’t run right. Point is, whatever Google might release in the second half of next year, it will just be a starting point. It won’t come close to what we’ve got.

Point two: Who in their right mind thinks the world needs yet another desktop operating system? The hacks who are foaming at the mouth about this big threat to Microsoft are the very same halfwits who a couple years back were declaring that the desktop OS was dead, Windows Vista would be the last one ever made, Apple shouldn’t bother making any more versions of OS X, blah blah. Now they’re saying nope, the world does need more operating systems, especially ones like this that are designed to work extra super specially well on computers that are hooked up to the Internet. Whatever that means.

Point three: They’re aiming this OS (or as we call it, “POS”) at netbooks, at least at first, and in case you hadn’t noticed, the netbook market is fucking tiny and will remain so forever. According to IDC, there were 11 million netbooks sold last year, and by 2013 that figure will hit 39 million. The market for PCs and laptops will be 10 times that size — literally — at 400 million units. Smartphones will be over 300 million units. So, um, you guys at Google want to have a dog fight with Microsoft to get a few points of that market? Go have fun. Seriously. Knock yourself out. Frankly, if the entire netbook market caught fire, I wouldn’t piss on it to put it out. But that’s just me.

Point four: You also may not have noticed, but nobody uses Chrome. I mean think about it. Do you know anyone who uses Chrome? Really? And you know why nobody uses Chrome? Because Chrome is shit. Just utter, utter shit. I mean they’ve got all these big brains at Google and you’d think they could make a decent fucking browser. Jesus, the freetards at Mozilla can do it. But not Google. Nope. They gave it their big best effort and what did they come up with? Chrome. It’s a joke. I mean, literally, we laugh about it, except when Eric is around. But as soon as he leaves the room we all go “Chrome!” and just burst out laughing. Our guys on the Safari team even had special toilet paper made up with a Chrome logo on every sheet. That’s how bad it is. Trying to make an OS out of Chrome is like saying you’re going to turn a Pontiac Aztek into a stretch limousine. I suppose it could be done, but why?

Point five: What the fuck is going on inside Google? How much more out of control and undisciplined can this place get? How many new goddamn operating systems are they going to create? They’ve already got Android, and nobody wants it. Now they’re going to make yet another operating system, this time out of a browser that nobody wants. What’s next? A Gmail-based operating system? A YouTube-based operating system? Honestly, Google, is there anyone in charge over there? Is there anyone who knows how to criticize anything in that fucked up little Montessori preschool of yours? I mean I guess it’s nice that you all get to spend 20 percent of your time dreaming up useless shit, and I guess you have to use the Montessori method and tell everyone that whatever little piece of shit they’ve created is just so wonderful and perfect and beautiful — but really, as I’ve told Eric before, that doesn’t mean you have to release everything these bozos dream up. There’s a word for this. It’s called “no.” Have you heard of it? I mean, fine, let them fuck around with stuff. Engineers like to tinker. So let them tinker. Then when they bring you whatever it is they’ve made, first you say you’re too busy to meet with them. Then you say you’ve changed your mind and you will meet with them after all. Then you wait until they’re all in the conference room with everything set up, and you send Katie down to tell them that you’re going to be a little bit late. You make them wait an hour. Then two hours. Then, at six in the afternoon, you send Katie down to tell them that you’ve changed your mind again and now you can’t make it. Then, finally, you set up another appointment and this time you do meet with them — but before they can even speak you just look at whatever it is they’ve made and you say, I’m sorry, that’s a piece of shit, and you walk out. Trust me, engineers love this. They’re all masochists. That’s why they became engineers in the first place.

Point six: It’s going to be free. So what’s the point? I mean I understand the idea of a loss leader. We don’t charge for iTunes. You’ll notice, however, that we do charge money for music and hardware. But how does this concept apply to Chrome OS? Somehow if you put out a new operating system you’ll get more people using the Internet and then you’ll be able to sell more of those shitty little ads? Forgive me if I’m missing something here, but I don’t see how a free OS or a free browser helps Google. To put it another way, have you ever met anyone who said they’d really like to try out that Interwebs thing, but they’re just put off by the low-quality operating systems and browsers that are available at this time, so they’re sitting it out for now? Or like maybe they’re on the Internet now but they would just be soooo inclined to spend soooo much more time on the Web, and they’d be soooo much more likely to actually click on the ads, if the OS and browser made it somehow less onerous to, um, type in a URL and go to a page? Nah, the only point in Google giving away a free browser and OS is somehow to fuck up Microsoft. (And/or to do some sneaky shit that helps Google screw users a little bit more efficiently. See Point 8 below.) But on the anti-Microsoft angle, take it from someone who has spent the past 10 years selling a superior operating system and getting only 4 percent market share — as obsessions go, battling the Borg is waaay overrated. If you ask me, Google is getting a little nutty about the Borg and it’s starting to show. They’re starting to look like the new Scott McNealy. Remember him? Ran a company called Sun, which had a great little business going until McNealy became obsessed with Gates and started doing things like paying millions of dollars to buy StarOffice so he could get into that booming free software business.

Point seven: The only people who are pushing for this are the hardware OEMs and ODMs and they’re only doing it so they can get a bargaining chip on the Borg. They don’t want to use Chrome, or Android, or Linux. They want Windows. They just don’t want to pay for it. Whatever Microsoft wants to charge for Windows 7, the hardware guys want to pay less. Hang the threat of yet another OS over Ballmer’s shiny head and maybe he’ll bring down his prices. That, anyway, is the thinking. Happened already in netbooks when they first came out with Linux on the Anus EEEEEPC — that rang some bells up in Redmond, believe me. So maybe there is some benefit to Google in forcing Microsoft to lower its prices. Maybe by doing that they choke off a little bit of Redmond’s oxygen supply, and that makes it a little harder for Microsoft to encroach on Google’s search advertising business. Google is pissed about Bing, and the Yahoo stuff. So they splatter back some machine-gun fire at Microsoft’s cash cow, the OS business. Fair enough. As DeNiro said, They send one of yours to the hospital, you send one of theirs to the morgue. That’s the Chicago way. But if that’s your big goal in life, the chance to maybe put a stick in Microsoft’s spokes — well, we’ve come a long way from the days of Sergey and Larry with stars in their eyes, wanting to make the world a better place. If that’s really what gets these guys up in the morning, well, friends, I will pray for your soul. Here at Apple we have better things to do. Like creating new devices that nobody else has ever created before, and restoring a sense of childlike wonder to people’s lives. Or inventing whole new multi-billion-dollar markets that didn’t exist before. You’d rather just ape the Borg. Well, whatever. Godspeed to you, Google.

Point eight: People are starting to realize that Google is not their friend, and that all this “free stuff” from Google is not about a) philanthropy, or b) keeping Microsoft honest, but really about c) helping Google gain even more control over what you do on the Internet. See a nice piece by John Paczkowski here for an example. You know how we call IBM the Original Borg, or OB? Google is the NB. Really, Google, in case you hadn’t noticed, a lot of people are kind of not really liking you guys right now. Even the freetards are starting to turn on you.

So, to reiterate, everything’s fine, and there’s nothing to worry about. It’s nice that Google wants to make more operating systems, and we at Apple don’t feel threatened by this, or betrayed by our own board member Eric Schmidt, just as we didn’t feel betrayed or threatened by the Android smartphone platform. We welcome competition and think it’s just great that Google wants to contribute to advancing the state of the art of personal computing. As Sarah Palin would say, the engineers at Google are ambitionistic about wanting to progress the world, and gosh, ya know what? That’s darn good for everyone.

Or, as I just told Eric on the phone a few moments ago: Dear friend, I realize you think I’m weak right now, and maybe a little bit vulnerable, and you may also still be a little bit peeved because even though you’re on the board at Apple I didn’t tell you about the surgery I was having and instead led you to believe that I had moved to Tennessee because I needed to negotiate some country-western deals for iTunes. Okay. Fair enough. And I know you think you got a lifetime free pass on fucking me over after you and Al Gore bailed me out of that jam with the SEC investigation of the options backdating a couple years back. But, dear friend, enough is enough. You really need to think about what you’re doing and who it hurts. Seriously. I mean it. Do some thinking. Meanwhile, for the time being, I’ve instructed Apple security to revoke your pass at Infinite Loop, and I would really, really, really appreciate it if you would just not call me or come around here anymore. Because if you do, well, I’m just so upset about all this that I might just — well, honestly, Eric, I’m afraid I couldn’t be responsible for what I might do. I will hurt you, Eric. I’m sorry, but I will. Are you feeling me? Because that’s how it is. Seriously, bitch. It’s over between us. Namaste.