In the far-away island of Redy-Mond-Ross,
Billy the Chilly was king of the DOS.
A nice little DOS with a great big Window
Where programs of all sorts would come and would go.
The vendors flocked to it–for none were afraid.
From that DOS and that Window much money they made.
They did until Billy, the king of that clutch,
Decided the vendors were making too much.
"I’m ruler," said Billy, "of all that I own.
But I don’t own enough," he let out with a groan.
"I own the DOS and the Window–that’s true.
Then how come my network is still number two?
I make the most money," he said with no glee,
"But no one should make any money but me.
I must have it all, whether Big Blue or clone.
What a king! I’d be ruler of all that I own."
So Billy the Chilly his minions did hail,
And Billy, the Chilly king, sent some E-mail:
He ordered nine vendors to give him their code–
To put it in DOS, not to lighten their load.
"If you give me your programs," he said with a smile,
"When I ruin your market, I’ll do it in style."
Then Billy put all of those programs in DOS,
And said "Of defraggers and backups, I’m Boss."
"All mine!" Billy cried, and he started to sway.
"I’ll control all the apps!" And he shouted "OLE!
From former King Blue, finished now my divorce is;
While Word and Excel will use all the resources.
I’ll buy out that Fox, and I’ll reap what he’s sown,
For I am the ruler of all that I own."
Then Billy cried "No one can sell a PC,
Unless he is willing to pay me a fee."
But as he was speaking, he heard with great dread
A meek little voice coming from a mild Fed.
"Excuse me, great King, I wish not to alarm,
But I think there’s a danger you’ll do us all harm.
Be nice, and please tell us you never would cheat,
And that other vendors can truly compete.
Please tell us, King Billy, so we won’t think of suing,
That your right hand knows not what your left hand is doing."
"SILENCE!" yelled Billy, his face a bright red.
"I’m king, and you’re only a meek little Fed.
We’ve worked much to hard to let you guys demote us;
I’m bigger than Novell, I’m bigger than Lotus.
Get out of my way; it’s a shame you can’t see
That your boss was elected to serve men like me.
You’ll never get me ’cause my bandwidth is tough,
And I’ve power! Though still not near power enough."
Then Billy, he smiled and explained what he meant.
"I just want my fair share–that’s one hundred percent.
If it takes a computer, I must have no equal
In spreadsheets, games, CDs, words, Basic, or SQL.
Home finance is one place where I really blew it–
But that doesn’t matter; I’ll just buy Intuit."
But that meek little Fed made a meekish attack.
He asked "Have you settled with that fellow, Stac?"
"I have," laughed King Billy, "it ended just fine.
I bought part of Stac; he won’t get out of line."
Then the Fed humbly asked as he fell in a swoon
"Can you say why your apps all had OLE so soon?"
Then Billy the Chilly switched to angry mode;
"Are you saying I let myself read my own code?
Such things do not happen, and I don’t like your tone.
For I am the ruler of all that I own."
But as he was planning himself to enshrine,
He noticed that millions were going on-line.
"If they talk will their talk be a squawk that goes my way?
I must buy control of the Info-Net Highway.
I’ll build my own turnpike, and I’ll charge the toll.
And what is said on it, that I will control.
Millions will use it; my network will thrive,
I’ll make it a part of Windows 95.
Then the meek little Fed made a meek little noise.
"Perhaps we’ll agree to let you keep your toys.
A big courtroom battle we’d hate to prolong,
So let us just say that you’ve done nothing wrong."
"I like that," said Bill, "And to make it quite plain,
What I haven’t done–I won’t do it, again."
So Billy shook hands with the meek little Fed,
And signed an agreement that left him ahead.
The Fed smiled at Billy and thought them both blessed.
But one little judge found it hard to digest.
He thought about Billy as his stomach, it turned.
And that little judge–well, his money, he earned.
For that little judge did a curious thing:
And thus shook the throne of the king.
And Billy the Chilly, the king of the DOS,
The king of Excel, the NT albatross,
The king of Encarta and that C++ tool…
Well, that was the end of the Chilly King’s rule!
For Billy, he failed, then retried to abort,
Fell out of his Office and plunk into court!
And today the great Billy, who never atones,
Is King of QBASIC, that’s all that he owns.
And the vendors and users, well all are now free.
Don’t you wish, in this world, that’s the way it could be?