The Giga Report

By Steven Vaughan-Nichols  |  Posted 2004-01-06 Print this article Print

Next, we have the report that Microsoft bought from Giga Information Group that compared J2EE/Linux software development costs to Windows and .Net. Microsoft pushes the fact that the study found that it was cheaper to develop with Windows and .Net. What Microsoft doesnt trumpet is that Giga Informaiton Group also reported, "The study also indicates that many organizations will adopt Linux instead of Microsofts alternative." Thats because many organizations saw Linux as a good way to reduce costs while retaining their Unix skills investments.

To read more about the Giga Information Groups research study, click here.
Microsoft also doesnt note that even with such caveats, the study was subjected to such a firestorm of criticism that Giga Information Group backed away from it, though it did not fully repudiate it.

Specifically, George Colony, the CEO of Forrester Research, Giga Information Groups parent company, said in a public letter, "Recently, in two isolated and unrelated cases (Microsoft and PeopleSoft), we conducted privately sponsored studies for two vendor clients. We stand by the integrity of both studies. However, we erred in allowing those clients to publicize the research findings."

Colony went on, "In response to these two isolated events, Forrester has taken immediate steps to tighten our internal process and clarify our Integrity Policy. As part of this clarification, the company will no longer accept projects that involve paid-for, publicized product comparisons."

Underneath the polite words, Forrester Research was saying that it saw studies like the J2EE one as endangering the "research integrity (that) is the core value of our company and is fundamental to Forresters value proposition." If thats the kind of strong analyst backing Microsoft is finding to support its case, Microsoft is in trouble.

Next page: A more rational Microsoft.

Steven J. Vaughan-Nichols is editor at large for Ziff Davis Enterprise. Prior to becoming a technology journalist, Vaughan-Nichols worked at NASA and the Department of Defense on numerous major technological projects. Since then, he's focused on covering the technology and business issues that make a real difference to the people in the industry.

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