MS DoS and Koran

This post examines some similarities between Islam and MS DOS and between Bill Gates and Mohummad. Most of the observations also apply for the other desert faith and its idols – christianity, jesus and bible.

This OS/religion comparison is not far fetched. Imagine the OS as the religious platform – in case of islam, koran, seerah represent the OS kernel though claimed immutable. Applications that sit on Operating System are analogous to socio cultural norms such as family values, fine arts, science, justice et. al.

Introduction

Bill Gates boot-strapped Microsoft’s business  by selling  MS DOS Operating System to change the world and Mohummad  bootstrapped his prophethood career by propagating his wares in the name of God to change the world.

When MS DOS (Disk Operating System) was written, it was certainly not the best operating system. There were technically superior operating systems available in the market.

Similarly when Koran was written, it was by distance not the best book in the world even in the western world where Islam was born. There were  very many better books that proferred superior worldviews. One could think of off hand Marcus Aurelius Antonius’s  Meditations and Plato’s Dialogues. These works Meditations and Dialogues are sublime and are superior to what Mohummad and his followers compiled as Koran. (Or for that matter Jesus followers as Bible – New Testament. One may want to validate this by reading objectively and critically both Koran and Marcus’s Meditations)

{Let us not focus here on the wonderful and older conceptualizations carried out by Indian seers acknowledged as such subsequently by unbiased muslim scholars – conceptualizations such as Brahma Sutr – Secret of God, Yoga Sutr – Techniques for Realizing God or Bhakthi Sutr – Techniques and Secrets of Devotion to God or efforts further to the east by the Chinese scholars (Lao Tse, Confucius etc.)}

DOS was not something original written by Bill Gates. The “Microsoft Disk Operating System” or MS-DOS was based on QDOS, the “Quick and Dirty Operating System” written by Tim Paterson of Seattle Computer Products, for their prototype Intel 8086 based computer. Similarly Monotheism was not something original to Mohummad.  Jews and Christians knew Monotheism;  Zarathushtra, many sects in ancient Egypt and in India had believed in different forms of Monotheism, though the Indian & Iranian variants were markedly different.

Koran was an output based on tales, essentially Rabbanic that Mohummad heard from travelers and intellectuals during the business travels that Mohummad made when he was employed by Lady Khwadja, a Mecca based rich widow and a businesswoman. Many insightful commentators have highlighted that Mohummad’s interpretations of Rabbanic tales have tended to be self serving. And not surprisingly koran is contextual to its environment – middle east in medieval times.

It can be argued that both MS-DOS and islam benefited their first adherents though both were sub-optimal solutions.

Reasons for Success in Market – Women behind Men

Bill Gates succeeded because Bill Gates’s mother Mary Gates had served with John Akers, IBM Director and later CEO, which was instrumental in Bill Gates getting the contract for installing DOS for IBM PC. The IBM PC contract bootstrapped Microsoft’s growth.

Mohummad succeeded because Khwadja (a leading business woman of Arabia and from dominant Quresh tribe in Mecca) provided Mohummad, a semi-literate orphan 15 years her junior employment and subsequently her spouseship providing orphan Mohummad enhanced status in Mecca and among Quresh.  As an aside, some scholars critical of islam have argued that Islam’s subsequent subjugation of women was in response to the psychological impotence that Mohammad may have felt and the complexes Mohummad developed as a result of his orphanhood and dependency on Khwadja who comes across as a dominant personality.

It is important to understand why both Bill Gates and Mohummad succeeded. The Primary Reason; Effective dissemination of their products – DOS and Koran both of which succeeded despite their not being the best of products in the market when they were conceptualized.

Unlike Apple the OS that MS DOS 1st competed with, DOS was licensed to every computer manufacturer at a cost effective price. Hence Apple OS, though it was qualitatively better OS could not match the economies that MS-DOS’s horizontal model spawned and gradually the vertical business model that Apple (competition) operated on collapsed. Decidedly the experience with MS products remained ordinary. Moore’s Law and the lack of imagination at MS provided an opening for Apple to bounce back.

In case of disseminating Koran, Mohummad did not face significant competition at all from an intellectual context. The Roman Empire had fallen and the rigidity of Church had taken over as dominant paradigm across much of Europe and middle east. Middle eastern world had entered dark ages. Islamic ideology took birth in an environment that was full of hatred, intolerance and war mongering. Conceptualization and propagation of Koran happened at a time when distances were not easily covered and proliferation of knowledge of limited. Not many people including Mohummad would have heard or studied Plato’s and Marcus’s classics. Simplistic certitude coupled with the possibility of making war booty in the initial years helped recruitment; initial recruits to islam were mostly have-nots that noticed the potential to gain materially. God was used as the dogmatic bogeyman to enforce order among tribes. And Islam took off.

Impact of Bill Gates and Impact of Mohummad

Everyone knows the impact that DoS and Koran have had on our lives. Microsoft has been ruthless in the market thorough their Monopoly based practices. Among other actions, bundling of Explorer to destroy Netscape Navigator is old History – Embrace, Extend and Extinguish. Through the 1990s, Microsoft’s mis-representative trade practices and under-hand methods were criticized. With the Internet itself becoming the platform, even Bill Gates could not completely control the industry. Propoganda myth creation citing selective charity work by the NGOs and the likes of Bill Gates go on though there is ample evidence on how he treated Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen when Allen was diagonized with cancer (he explored ways to dilute co-founder’s equity Link 1Link 2) and is majorly funding propagation of questionable initiatives like the GMF (Genetically Modified Food) using among other things, spurious right to choice canard. These days, Bill Gates is claiming to support health-care. There are reports of his foundation involved in short changing gullible Hindu tribals in India through dubiously conducted drug trials.  His foundation also funded India’s notorious NDTV and Christian supremacist World Vision. His legacy is still work-in-progress.

Islam and Koran have been if anything even more ruthless than Microsoft’s practices. There is no tolerance of dissent to the extent that anyone that questions Koran or Mohummad even remotely faces Blasphemy laws and is punishable by death according to Shariah (Islamic Jurispudence). Mohummad’s islam remains an influential paradigm though it faces the challenge of Kaal (time induced changes). Koranic certitudes have faced challenges in the light of women’s empowerment and inability to respect those who reject the ideology of Islam. The continuing difficulty of Muslims to adjust as a minority people; the creation of Pakistan, large scale support for Hudood, the continuing Jehad in Kashmir, Medieval Behavior of Taliban are manifestations of these challenges.

Conclusion

Apple Macintosh OS, much superior to DOS, lost out to it. In an environment of information and knowledge distortion, inferior products backed by superior propaganda, penetration techniques (including deceit) and promising of adequate economic reward do tend to succeed. Regulator’s job should be to minimize possibilities for information and knowledge distortions.

Microsoft slowed the evolution of technology. Odds are but for the uncontested slimy behavior of Bill Gates Team, technology evolution would have been faster and IPad type products hit the market a years earlier. Similarly, Islam and Christianity type dogmatic memeplexes slow down evolution of humanity.

George Orwell’s big brother did not die out. Its various shades live with us as islamic and christian dogmas. For example islamic belief is predicated in conditioning the mind through repetitive ‘dogmatic’ assertions. One Size (koran, sunna in case of islam, jesus’s personality in case of christianity) fits all assertion backed by centuries of propaganda. Dogma based certitudes such as islam, christianity do not reflect the majesticity and complexity of nature, creation and life.

As distinct from simplistic dogma monochromatic weltanschuang in totalitaran world-views like that of  islam and christianity, Hindu Dharma Point of view asserts, that differences are inherent in nature. Experiences and not dogma form the basis for religious beliefs. Skepticism, Critical Examining are encouraged. Through the Law of Karma people are made responsible for their actions. Feminine as manifestation of divine is accepted. Hinduism urges that change is an inherent part of the fabric of reality of the Cosmos and evolution. Plants, animals, and seasons – everything have their differences and and built-in cycles integrated to them. Differences are built into the way human beings are composed – in their bodies and minds and their cultures and languages.

It has been proposed that for beliefs like islam and christianity to be meaningful, they should be reinterpreted. Many assert that these beliefs do not lend to reinterpretation and that both these dogmas should be effaced; that secularism should be applied on them; In any case, it is important to realize that knowledge distortion that happens on account of uncritical dogmas, end up doing damage to humanity.

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4 Responses to MS DoS and Koran

  1. sally smithers says:

    Surely islam is apple os, christianity msdos and judaism commodore 64

  2. neelkanth says:

    Well, quite soft on Mohummad, but keep writing.

  3. K P Ganesh says:

    A “serious”ly fun filled comparison. A nice change from reading day to day hard hitting stuff.

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