I have a fun question for Linux users today: What will you do with your US$3700?
That’s the money you won’t have to pay to Microsoft, over the course of your lifetime, to use your computer.
That number might sound a bit random, but there is a vague resemblance of math behind it.
Amazon.com has current (with the stress on “current”) prices for most every Windows product back to 95. I draw the line there, although you could pull in prices from 3.x or 2 or even Windows 1, if you want.
With the average of everything up to and including Windows 7 reaching about US$112, that seems like a safe number to suggest for the versions of Windows that don’t exist yet.
And considering that the release schedule for Windows is rather spattered, but happening at its quickest at two-year intervals, I gave Microsoft the benefit of the doubt. I am predicting that the behemoth corporation, gnarled with bureaucracy and sodden with obfuscation, can disgorge a new version once every other year.
Wikipedia gives the last nugget of information, suggesting that the average life span of a human being is about 67 years.
Armed with those facts, and with a sparkly-fresh copy of teapot at my command, I came up with the magic number of US$3700, over a lifetime, for the use of computers.
Of course, that’s really wacky math. You’re free to dissect it as you like, account for crap releases no-one would buy, or adjust for inflation and amortization.
Do as you will, and disagree if you like. In the mean time, I will be planning my vacation around the US$3700 or so I can keep for myself, by never buying Windows again.
P.S.: If US$3700 doesn’t shake you, do the math for Mac operating systems. Now that’s got to scare you. …