inessential.com: Weblog: What should Apple do?: There’s a bit of a controversy brewing in Macland about the WWDC conference and the Konfabulator knockoff Apple introduced called Dashboard. The theory is that Apple saw a great third-party app that people loved, and decided it needed to be part of the OS itself.
Apple can’t do everything — they need other developers to make software for OS X too. What concerns me is the message the Dashboard thing sends. It goes like this, “If you come up with a good idea and develop a successful product, we might copy it and bundle it for free with the OS.”
The Konfabulator folks, for their part, are having some fun with it, poking fun of the posters that poked fun at Microsoft with a banner on their site that says, “Cupertino [where Apple is based], start your photocopiers!”
Konfabulator was apparently written by some ex-Apple employes, and they had this to say:
Regarding the conspiracy theory about Konsposé and prior knowledge of Dashboard, here’s the scoop. We knew Dashboard was coming, and we’d been told by *many* people that it was being developed as a “Konfabulator Killer”. We never knew the specifics of it other than it was rumored to be the exact same thing as Konfabulator integrated at the system level. We didn’t know that it was going to be touted as part of Exposé, and we didn’t know that their format was going to be closer to a web page than a structured XML file.
The threat of having the OS subsume your original work is a threat Windows developers have lived with for years. I’ve always wondered what happened to WinZip and PKZip sales when Windows XP was introduced with integrated zip functionality.