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Sun/Apple merger? Readers react

SunWorld Online readers favor Sun's buying Apple

By Mark Cappel

March  1996
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We gave SunWorld Online readers the chance to comment in essay form on the notion of Sun buying Apple Computer, and many seized that opportunity. We share our readers thoughts received from February 1 through February 26, 1996.

The comments are reproduced as received; only some minor spelling and punctuation errors have been corrected. -- Editors

Topic: Tell us what you think about a Sun/Apple merger

Date: Thu Feb 1 09:32:30 PST 1996
I think that Sun shouldn't buy Apple. What would they gain? What assets does Apple have that make it worth the price? The UI? Certainly not. After all, OpenLook was conceptually superior to the Mac's ui. Hardware expertise? No. Sun has demonstrated that it can build hardware in a more cost-effective fashion than Apple.

Date: Thu Feb 1 09:48:09 PST 1996
Apple needs to be purchased by a company that knows the value of cutting edge software technology and has the management expertise to forecast market demand accurately.

Date: Thu Feb 1 11:08:57 PST 1996
I'm going to use this to answer some of the questions for which the multiple choices didn't seem appropriate. Apple is a unique company, with its own culture and technology. The marketplace seems to expect Apple's product prices to be competitive with those from the Wintel consortium. To me, that's an unreasonable expectation, since Apple must incur all of the software R&D costs, whereas most vendors of Wintel products have no such costs, simply reselling their hardware with MS Windows (or Windows 95). Furthermore, the Wintel community has nine times the installed base of Macintoshes, and obtains certain economies of scale as a result. (Note that the larger corporations in that community - IBM, H-P, Digital - cannot match the prices of the dedicated resellers - Dell, Gateway, Micron.) So Apple is in a tough spot, made even tougher by management errors that go back a long time (pre-Spindler), and by a media feeding frenzy that seems bent on discouraging corporate buyers from continuing to buy from Apple. As a result, Apple may be forced into a merger strategy. To me, mergers rarely work. A few people at the top of the acquired company make out well financially, but the organizational, cultural, and product combinations often take a long time to be rationalized, during which time many of the key technical contributors leave. For those reasons, I think it would be better if Apple were able to remain independent. Since that is increasingly unlikely, Sun and SGI are better partners than most of the others that have been suggested in your list (Fujitsu!?#). They are also more geographically desirable.

Date: Thu Feb 1 12:54:21 PST 1996
Keep PowerPC line, Printers. Discontinue 68060 line

Date: Thu Feb 1 15:29:02 PST 1996
I'm not a SPARC/Solaris user, but I like both. If the two companies merged your products will not discontinue. Sun is 1st vendor of net servers, Apple is the 2nd. Java/HotJava is great, OpenDoc too, QuickTime/Conferencing/VR/QuickDraw 3D/3DMF/VRML/Multimedia/MacOS/Copland/etc. are great too. Sun/Apple hard&soft technologies are great. I think the bad think at Apple are the war-marketing and commercial strategies. And Windows95 is a stone bluff! PS-Excuse me for my written English.

Date: Thu Feb 1 16:40:59 PST 1996
A merger between Sun and Apple would be great. I own two Macs and one UltraSPARC and I own Apple stock, so I have a stake in this question. I use the Mac's for multimedia development (using ScriptX) and I will be using the UltraSPARC for GIS and remote sensing applications. Apple has what Sun needs -- solid multimedia technologies. Sun/Solaris combined with Apple multimedia technologies would be a winner against Silicon Graphics, and be competitive against the Wintel steamroller. Sun has what Apple needs -- a solid reputation in the business market, and a commanding presence in Internet technologies. A merged Sun/Apple would be more than the sum of its two parts, in my opinion. Go for it, but please not at the insulting $23/share. Apple is worth more, much more, than its current book value. Like Sun, Apple has a history of innovation and excellence (unlike the brainless dolts pushing least common denominator hardware products in the Wintel camp. Share and spread both companies technologies throughout both product lines, but otherwise keep the two product lines distinct.

Date: Thu Feb 1 16:45:33 PST 1996
Sun is going to lose a lot of money if it buys Apple. The upside is that it will have a possible entrance into the home. The downside is that sun will probably try to change Apple too much, and lose that entrance. Apple, on the other hand, has incompetence at the top-level management. Not to mention that it pays way too much in wages for unskilled labor. All the innovative people at Apple have left. Its time to sell the remaining hulk to someone who knows what to do with it.

Date: Thu Feb 1 17:26:21 PST 1996
Drop SPARC, creating a Apple-Sun-IBM-Motorola alliance.

Date: Thu Feb 1 17:44:47 PST 1996
The merger could help Sun because Sun currently lacks a low end P.C. in the marketplace. In addition, Apple does have a significant following in the art world and also in Publishing. The addition of Mac developers of GUI coupled with Sun's leadership in connectivity could leapfrog Apple to the mainstream user community. They don't necessarily have to run the Mac GUI on SPARC, what about a Java/MacOS combination to compete against windows 95? I understand it would be a tall order but it could improve Apples marketshare from Sun's competition without affecting Sun's market.

Date: Thu Feb 1 17:50:34 PST 1996
Sun should purchase Apple (if the price is right -- read low) and use the customer base to create client machines for Java and other network related technologies. Apple's multimedia and consumer level name recognition could give Sun more horsepower in taking on Microsoft on the internet. Sun is still a real technology company, while Apple fired its best technologists years ago -- this merger could allow Apple technologies to begin to show some real innovative ideas again. If Sun buys Apple and does nothing decidedly different with Apple's technology than the Mac, Sun will lose big to MS and Bill's minions.

Date: Thu Feb 1 18:16:32 PST 1996
Migrate to a common interface (Copeland/solaris). Capitalize on the development of Apple's New open network transport. The new transport sounds like the ideal answer to Microsoft NT. Sun would benefit from a network solution providing intolerability with major NOS's such as NT and Novell. Sun could bundle Banyan's ENS for simple administration and centralized management of their network. Sun should deploy Macintosh as its solution to corporate desktop and home multimedia systems. Spark stations should focus on high-end workstations and servers. Spark servers should rely on TCP/IP for networking, but push corporate networking using Apple's new transport.

Date: Thu Feb 1 18:40:50 PST 1996
Hard to tell! Both companies are in totally market segment. But the line between two markets seems to be merging in last few year. Get in mind that Apple has a big name in the international market.

Date: Thu Feb 1 19:35:51 PST 1996
It would be good for both companies. In a nutshell, Sun has great hardware but a mediocre OS, while Apple has mediocre hardware but a great OS. Sun have always had excellent hardware, and now even more so with the UltraSPARC processors and CREATOR/3DRAM graphics. But Sun's appeal to the mass computer market has always been badly hurt by a perceived image of Unix being "hard to use". Solaris has some great technical advantages (multitasking, multi-processor support, multi-user design, security etc), but the fact that the user interface has changed drastically *3* times (SunView, OpenLook, CDE) in the six years since the SPARCstation 1 is a good indication that the GUIs were pretty bad, especially compared to the nice friendly Macintosh interface which is so popular with end users that it has remained basically the same since 1984! Apple, on the other hand, have always had this great interface, but have never had really *great* hardware. Even back in the mid-to-late 80's, the Amiga's hardware was way ahead of the Macintosh. And today, although the PowerMac's are quite nice machines, its difficult to get high end graphics performance (3D in particular) out of a PowerMac. You just cant buy a Macintosh which can match an Ultra/CREATOR3D or an SGI Indigo2/IMPACT. So a lot of people who want such a machine are forced to go for Unix just because its the only OS which runs on these high end machines. So it seems to me that a Sun/Apple merger would give both companies a big advantage. The combined SnApple company could put the nice Mac interface onto the technically superior Solaris core OS, and offer this ne

Date: Thu Feb 1 19:47:09 PST 1996
I don't think a merger would be good for either company. According to a recent article in Newsweek, Sun is just out looking for a bargain. I bought Apple stock at $34, and I'd like to see you offer at least $40, but indications are you will only offer $23. That sucks. Why doesn't Sun merge or buyout Silicon Graphics. They seem to be more in tune with what you are doing. You can combine market share with them and really have a great combination! Leave Apple alone. Let Motorola buy the out. That type of deal makes more sense to both companies. Apple already buys Motorola chips and Motorola buys Apple computers. I am not even going to talk about what products to keep or discontinue. I know I will never vote for merger approval. LEAVE APPLE ALONE. Also, your survey was unfair. You asked why Apple lost $69 million. Why don't you mention they sold a record number of units. All they have to do is streamline manufacturing and they can regain profitability at current price levels. Sometimes I wonder if you guys really know what the hell you are doing. Thank you for letting me vent my frustrations.

Date: Thu Feb 1 20:00:54 PST 1996
Merger will be Apple's only way to remain innovative. Sun could receive a solid base of users. Networking is the future. These two companies working together could bring a new world in computer business.

Date: Thu Feb 1 21:42:04 PST 1996
I feel a merger would benefit both companies. I believe Sun would bring a more structured management style to Apple without limiting innovation, while Apple would bring instant access to the consumer and desktop publishing market. Possibly the most exciting consequence of the merger would be for users of the Internet. By offering more innovation for Internet users, I feel "SnApple" would be able to better penetrate the Internet market and stave off the total domination of the computer software industry by Microsoft.

Date: Fri Feb 2 01:08:26 PST 1996
Apple has proven it's ability to develop exceptional new technologies and bring them to it's users first. The cost of being at the forefront of it's market (high-end PC, low end workstation, whatever you want to call it) was almost happily absorbed by the user base. It was worth dumping large amounts of money into the system because professionals could actually do paying work, work that looks good without spending huge amounts of money on low-distribution Unix software. Apple has successfully created a

Date: Fri Feb 2 02:50:45 PST 1996
A well managed merger could be good for both companies. Apple and Sun sell into some similar markets at different levels. Problems would arise with what to do over CPU architecture and OS. Sun SPARC chips seem to be falling a long way behind the competition in performance yet their prices remains high. Apples hardware division could be used to manufacture new business oriented java workstations which would run from Sun servers. Sun could make could use of the work Apple has done on getting 680x0 code to run on the PowerPC platform, some of the techniques they use to speed up this emulation code be used in Java interpreters. Maybe Sun could drop SPARC chips into Apple boxes to replace the current SPARC 4/5 models and PowerPC chips could be put into high end Sun boxes to give SMP PowerPC systems, that way a complete range of systems would exist for both processors.

Date: Fri Feb 2 04:42:24 PST 1996
Discontinue the new work on the Copeland version of MacOS, use the PowerPC version of Solaris instead. Focus on an outstanding developers kit to accompany the new Solaris/MacOS product. Port the Mac GUI to Solaris -- if Apple's AUX GUI is in fair shape, it might be a start. Focus on getting developers onto the new Solaris MacOS make recompilation to SPARC Solaris "real easy."

Date: Fri Feb 2 04:44:45 PST 1996
Good for both. Merge the structure and products along the CHRP and PCI lines, changing them on the way accordingly.

Date: Fri Feb 2 04:49:53 PST 1996
Sun would be putting its wood behind a number of different arrows again, this would be bad.

Date: Fri Feb 2 06:16:56 PST 1996
The only reason I can see is to leverage the Solaris server capabilities with a smaller footprint desktop system and gain all the committed Mac users as Sun customers. People use Macs because they are easy. They like the Mac interface and the fact that it runs Word and Excel, Powerpoint etc. I doubt that the Mac would survive very long without the ability to run Microsoft applications. Maybe the Internet terminal concept could be accelerated by low end Macs?

Date: Fri Feb 2 07:10:49 PST 1996
I think that from Sun's point of view Apple could make sense because it would complete Sun's internet portfolio. Apple macs are currently a very popular platform among internet content creators. Other benefits would be Apple's brand name and market share. I don't think that Apple has much to offer technology-wise.

Date: Fri Feb 2 07:44:24 PST 1996
I think it would be good for both companies if both companies were allowed to continue to work in the areas they are strongest in. I think the best thing Apple can gain from the merger is Sun's financial strength. Sun could really benefit from Apple's expertise is the desktop OS business and in Apple's strength is integrating the Mac OS seamlessly with hardware for a truly plug-and-play architecture. Apple would gain Sun's expertise in server class systems and OS. The best thing that could happen, should the merger go through, is each company be allowed to function as independent business units with lots of technology sharing.

Date: Fri Feb 2 08:04:46 PST 1996
A merger would bring more credibility to Apple, while at the same time give Sun access to new market segments previously un touched. The merger would also aid in the release of Sun's "toaster", as well as the porting of Sun/Solaris technology into the mainstream. By giving Sun access to its customer base, Sun will be able to more quickly penetrate the home/small office/small network customer base. Two points worry me, though. First, the cultures of the two organizations must meld. The human talent at each company comprise their most valuable assets. Secondly, the translation back and forth from MacOS to Sun's systems (and vice versa) must be flawless. I understand there is a precedence with the Macintosh Application Environment for Solaris, but when you are talking about complete integration, I worry that the compatibility is not 100%. I think that Apple needs a suitor, and barring divine intervention, I see Sun as not only the most likely white knight, but one of the finer suits for Apple.

Date: Fri Feb 2 11:41:18 PST 1996
It's good for Sun, it it can buy Apple(11B$/6.2B$). {Life without money - > DEC:-( ). But only way to do is make internet toasters, or make something absolutely new.

Date: Fri Feb 2 13:13:36 PST 1996
A merger would be good for Sun because it gives them an entry into the low end PC market (home, small business).

Date: Fri Feb 2 13:16:47 PST 1996
The Mac OS is by far the strongest asset the company has and frankly all hype aside, there is no other product that provides the same ease of use and conceptual (for the end user) integration of the GUI and the underlying structure. Almost as strong is Apple's line of hardware. Incredible reliable, high user loyalty, high perceived value. The only thing I would lose would be the performa end of the spectrum -- too many, too similar models and the clone market is better suited to dukking it out in that kind of low-margin market. I'd focus Sun on the networking and server end of life and focus Apple on the desktop and departmental server side of life. Apple makes arguably the best personal workstation in the market. focus on the OS and putting Mac's on desktops and Keep the Sun hardware at the server level.

Date: Fri Feb 2 14:03:13 PST 1996
I think Sun and Apple's hardware lines should stay separate and continue to stay ahead of forming technology.The PowerPC Platform is good news to both companies and they should combine the best qualities between both Solaris and MacOS to make the next generation of super powerful personal computer Operating Systems. This would give Sun a larger customer base and Apple new found power ion the OS and strength against both Sun and Apple's Biggest threat "Wintel". Both OSes have very good points but they could help each other in the long run. The internet already is hosted by mostly Sun and Apple servers this would make a very powerful alliance for the future of the internet and personal computers in general. In my opinion the deal with Sun is profitable for both companies and as a Mac user I would enjoy the power of the two companies combined. I would stay a customer for life if that's the case, I couldn't ask for a better setup to stay on the cutting edge of technology for years to come! Please start the revolution and give new meaning to powerful computer systems from net boxes through personal computers through workstations through supercomputers this would change the world. You have my vote!!!!

Date: Fri Feb 2 14:15:50 PST 1996
All I ask is for an intuitive GUI, a solid OS and plug-n-play connectivity. I bought Apple products when nothing was cross-platformable and it was the standard for the graphic design community. Now that a lot of the components are standard and applications can share files, I'm not particular as to system... except, I have a significant investment in Mac software and I want an easy interface.

Date: Fri Feb 2 15:56:55 PST 1996

Date: Fri Feb 2 18:00:44 PST 1996
I would absolutely keep the PowerMacs. Keep up licensing of MacOS. Merge Sun and Apple Internet resources. Don't produce so many Mac configs. Keep it simple and clean. Use lets say three main lines and just change the interior. Give each line a name. Ex. Arthur, Lancelot and Gawaine. So give them two numbers for processor and MHz. Like this: Arthur 604/150 Arthur 604/100 Lancelot 603/200 Lancelot 603/150 Lancelot 603/100 Gawaine 601/120 This way it would be easy to learn how to analyze the product line, even for a newcomer. The product line of Apple today is to confusing and names don't give You any information.

Date: Fri Feb 2 18:04:35 PST 1996
I think the companies could gain a great deal on the information and patent exchanges areas. Giving Sun a truly usable user interface (cf OpenLook/Motif). Apple's MacOS is a good product from a user point of view but it just does not have the power of a flexible OS like Solaris 2.5. Best case is to continue developing SPARC and PowerPC Hardware. Develop a common SuperOS which is OO (join Pink / Spring / Taligent and NextStep) into a common OS with a Truly great GUI, and license it to all comers. In the short term, push forward the develop of Apple MAE for Unix platforms and get companies (esp Adobe who seem to be buying everything in sight) to release MAE versions of software to see if the public want Mac ease of use on Unix boxes and X terminals I believe they would.

Date: Fri Feb 2 18:07:04 PST 1996
I would use the Mac GUI on the Solaris OS and open it to the Internet re the JAVA approach. All apps should be open DOC.

Date: Fri Feb 2 19:09:42 PST 1996
Apple: continue OS development Keep Apple execs out of Sun try to keep education market continue network development

Date: Fri Feb 2 19:28:16 PST 1996
I think it would be great for Sun. 22 million Apple customers become Sun customers! And they are all looking for a new leader. Good for Apple? Of course, because it's good for Apple customers. Sun has a leader with vision and brains. As for structure put them both under one roof. Build great computers with even better software. From desktop machine used in homes and schools to mainframes used to power the internet. As for products, I'd sell two low end models something like a Performa 6300, keep the 7500, 8500 and 9500, three laptop models a low, midrange and high end model, that's it! As for other products I would push the Newton with a new lower price. Price it so someone who can't afford a laptop would buy it. As for some of Apples other products, I'd push some of them like the GeoPort nobody knows about it, drop the scanners, and get printer prices in line with HP's. Lastly, hire Jobs back! and buy the company that developed software that will allow the Mac OS to run on an Intel based computer.

Date: Fri Feb 2 20:23:56 PST 1996
Use Sun marketing, sales and infrastructure Get rid of Apple management Keep some of the Apple culture and high energy marketing Add more of the Apple fun to Sun Port the Apple O/S to the Sun platform -- result SuperMac

Date: Fri Feb 2 21:57:14 PST 1996
Institute adult management at all levels. Keep selling Mac, MacOS, make MacGUI & apps run on Solaris. Keep up research, so MS (billg's company) will be *second* to marked with advanced technology. Eventually people will get it. **Get Claris apps working on Suns. This would be great in University settings where lots of unix machines used but where unix folk don't have decent word processors, spreadsheets, easy-to-use databases. That's the situation at the University of Utah Math Dept. where I work. Make easy to use (by non-geeks) Sun file/webservers. Lots of people is small business, university departments, need these, but can't afford unix support staff. Example: the nonprofit org my wife works for: Sundance Institute. They use lots of macs for everything including fileservers. Performance not great, but this is balanced by not needing a sysadmin. Would be better to have high performance fileservers as easy to set up as a Mac with Appleshare. Macs good as client machines, push them. Push Java.

Date: Fri Feb 2 22:12:23 PST 1996
Would probably be good for both Sun and Apple because it would expand each of their product lines. Sun doesn't have a consumer or low end line, while Apple's high end line is not widely used (or perceived as being used) in the high powered corporate world. The merger of the two would give them a broader spectrum product line and, if the compatibility issues were resolved satisfactorily, an excellent product progression line. It would provide a more viable option of integrating the home/office than is now available from either individually, and would be a much better alternative than the WinTel arrangement which rumbles on because of inertia in the corporate world.

Date: Fri Feb 2 23:08:04 PST 1996
These are comments from someone who has never used a Mac for more than 30 seconds and is certainly not literate about the intricacies of comparative operating systems. Instead they come from someone who
  1. follows financial news fairly closely
  2. is aware of the true devotion of Mac users to their hardware.
  3. who managed to pass an anti-trust course in law school
  4. uses a lot of Microsoft equipment
  5. is extremely leery about the dominance of Microsoft in the computer world.
It appears to me that Apple is in an extremely precarious financial position and also that its loss would be disastrously deleterious to the computer world and to contemporary concepts of fair trade. In short, I perceive an almost insoluble dilemma posed by the existence of two essentially disparate operating systems that, alas, in the final analysis do pretty much the same thing. Sony was able to survive the demise of Betamax because of a pre-existing product diversity. I am not aware whether or not Apple possesses similar resources. I can only hope that the financial advice that both Sun and Apple are receiving is coming from a source less myopic than devotees of a particular operating system and more concerned with the healthiness and progress of an electronic industry beneficial to consumers rather than individual corporate success or failure.

Date: Sat Feb 3 00:11:18 PST 1996
The computer world is going to be dominated by few Operating Systems and I would like to see more Solaris 2.5 running in large corporations. I would NOT spend any money in Apple but invest in making Solaris more affordable by "home PC". This is in my opinion the place where most people become familiar with a computing environment. I would create a decent alternative to WORD6.x and Excel. Make Solaris affordable and competitive with NT. Please concentrate all energy and money to create a valid alternative to Microsoft. I will be very happy to avoid the "CNTRL ALT DEL" sequence.

Date: Sat Feb 3 01:07:50 PST 1996
It's good for "all-from-one" marketing reason, but wrong for technologies merge. SoftWar with "Wintel" line haven't easy solution.

Date: Sat Feb 3 01:12:14 PST 1996
Develop the strong hold that Apple has on the publishing market and expand (Power PC) based hardware. Offer Os to broad usage couple with a DEll or Gateway. Sun use the Apple base to strengthen position of work stations (upgrade path) in visual/publish/entertainment development. Make the brilliance of the OS intellectual property the standard and build a fun, easy to use but extremely powerful platform. By the way do it today, I'm in printing industry and need to recommend a prepress system and don't want a W

Date: Sat Feb 3 08:01:43 PST 1996
I have seen some of the Power of SPARCStations but never really got to use the Solaris software. Apple needs someone like Sun to be able to be free thinking and come up with new technologies. Although some of what Sun does conflicts with Apple, they can work together to make everything better. Apple needs to be able to continue creating high powered Hardware/Software. An Apple Server with a SPARC Chip would sway lots of people from the DEC Alpha/Windows NT server trend. Most importantly Sun must buy Apple to get CEO Michael Spindler out. He is a moron. A company that can't sell $1 billion in back-orders should be examined.

Date: Sat Feb 3 08:08:19 PST 1996
Kick spindler Out. Keep PowerPC as a consumer, business desktop machine. Use Mac OS in a SPARCstation for servers. Keep Companies Separate but equal. Treat Apple Software like IBM/Lotus. Think about selling Hardware line to Compaq/ IBM

Date: Sat Feb 3 08:30:51 PST 1996
Assuming Sun purchases Apple, the relationship might be similar to Pepsi owning Kentucky Fried Chicken. The owner does not necessarily make business decisions; only ensures the long-term strategic objectives of both companies complement each other. Sun, if it were to buy Apple, might break up Apple into multiple firms (a la Sun's planets). These "Applets" could be positioned so that the Apple platform is open for competition from the clone industry. Apple hardware, operating system, and applications should be distinct business entities. In any case, as Sun and Apple cater to different markets, it is best if the synergy between the two remains minimal from the standpoint of computer technology overlap. If anything, Sun and Apple should consider a buyout only if it makes sound investment sense -- in this regard, Apple could be bought by any investor capable of drawing up a business plan for Apple. Conclusion: there is no inherent reasons why Sun must or must not buy Apple. If Sun were to buy, then Sun's role should be limited to turning Apple around as a business. Sun should not attempt to merge or port the two companies' technologies. This is for the market to decide.

Date: Sat Feb 3 09:06:34 PST 1996
It will be good for sun provided the products are kept separate. The two companies are identified for very different product lines and perhaps the only common feature they share is that both of them are computer hardware companies. Merging the products could well mean creation of an entirely new type of product whose effective commercial promotion, to establish it in the world market-place, could take a very long time. At the present time, Sun is identified, with its distinct logo, as the maker of very high quality, powerful computers which are also regarded as very affordable and thus find places in advanced industries, research, teaching and the like. Apple, on the other hand is looked upon as specializing in relatively low performance but much more user friendly computers for people with less advanced computer needs and who certainly aren't after huge computing powers. As such it is very successful in its own marketing niche. People who are thinking of buying Apple computer(s) or who are already `hooked' on Mac's are the are extremely unlikely to go for `traditional' Sun computers and vice-versa. This all means that in the case of a merger it would be wise for the merged companies to keep separate product lines with some enhancements to each from the other one. In my opinion, the merger will be good for Sun as it would secure a strong foothold in the desktop market and will thus grow in its overall marketing clout. As for Apple, it will gain from becoming larger and thus having more critical mass as well as having, we hope, a better management structure. Apple could also benefit from Sun's technology like ultrasparc and Sun's strength in network

Date: Sat Feb 3 09:09:21 PST 1996
I would kill Apple's Performa line, Merge the MacOS with Solaris, and market the PowerMac line specifically to graphic design and multimedia.

Date: Sat Feb 3 09:54:46 PST 1996
I would use Apple Macintosh and other Apple products as a separate division, so use the Apple software with the high performance SPARC and UltraSPARC chips, (keeping the ROMs inside the beloved Macintosh, of course), and Marketing them under a new logo. For added profit, sell limited product lines of the regular SPARC and Solaris and Macintosh lines, keeping the hard-core users happy. The key to keeping the Apple-Sun mix good is keeping the users happy. You have to keep the ROM that has all our toolbox calls the same, our developers will have a tough time adjusting. Remember, keep the ROM the same and you keep the developers in the Macintosh community faithful, increasing your profit. Please don't ignore this, if you do, this might payoff about as much buying a blank sheet of paper for $20. A faithful user of Macintosh and SPARC

Date: Sat Feb 3 09:59:52 PST 1996
Keep both companies as autonomous as possible Introduce new/ merge existing `New Technologies' group(s) to collaborate on projects like Java that can be implemented on both systems Form new temporary group whose sole purpose is to examine Apple's technologies and investigate their implementation in Solaris, and vice versa. Keep company names the same, but introduce SnApple as the generic way of referring to both together.

Date: Sat Feb 3 12:09:59 PST 1996
Yes it would be good for Sun. It would allow them to expand there excellent knowledge of Hardware and Software into the home market, and broaden their business market. The best thing for them would be to take the solid Solaris Unix core, and fuse it with the very usable Mac GUI. A solid, multi-tasking, robust OS is what the industry needs. Sun has the robust, multi-tasking OS. Apple has the very usable GUI.

Date: Sat Feb 3 13:39:54 PST 1996
Your questions are far too tough for a mere scholar of English and Anthropology. I don't know a damned thing about how to run a business, so I guess I'll come at you from a consumer's perspective.
  1. "By all means, do nothing to offend the Natives!" That is, if you do indeed purchase Apple, DO NOT IMPLEMENT ANY LAYOFFS. The consumers will foster great respect for your company if you heed this advice. The shareholders might be a little miffed at the beginning, but in the long-run, you will look good in the eye of the consumer and will inevitably pick up more business.
  2. Apple and Sun products would probably do best to retain their respective logos, hardware, software, etc, but every effort should be made to make the two fully compatible. For example, we've been hearing an awful lot of rumors that both MTV and VH1 are owned by the same company. The two maintain distinctively different programming, catering to different audiences (head-banger rock and rap groups versus "mellower" pop fans). Still, the two do not compete with each other and their programs are often similarly-structured.
  3. Macintoshes have a really bad reputation for bugs (net-surfers call Macs "Machine Always Crashes").
If you buy Apple, please do what you can to fix this damnable situation! Also, if you can figure out some way to make the price of the Powerbooks a little more reasonable, consumers will sing your praises for all eternity. Good luck! --Chieftain

Date: Sat Feb 3 14:38:57 PST 1996
I've used both Sun and Apple computers since college and they've always complemented each others capabilities. I would like to see the Mac interface more tightly integrated into the Solaris environment. MAE is awesome!!! I'd like to see the Mac interface become standard on Solaris eventually evolving towards OpenStep. Drop CDE!!! It Sucks! :) Hmmm... You could do some great product bundles using Mac and Netra servers for Web Publishing. Makes too much sense.

Date: Sat Feb 3 14:40:13 PST 1996
Trust that it would be. You have to be more aggressive then Apple ever was. They had a good machine, but dropped the ball. The PC market is just loaded with clones of IBN PC's.

Date: Sat Feb 3 14:52:53 PST 1996
Your valuation of an offer for Apple stock is right on target. What you are buying is a firm geared for the market of 1983. Sun has the technological capability and reputation to make a killing in the mid-range workstation market without any help at all from Apple. Let the users put Windows 95 and NT on your hardware if they want to do that instead of Solaris. Look for someone strong to team with, not someone weak to take over. How do thing they became weak?

Date: Sat Feb 3 14:56:17 PST 1996
I think that a Sun/Apple merger could be good for Sun all around, good for Apple's business customers, and good for the industry by forming worthy competition to Microsoft/Intel. Instead of just a port of current Mac interface to run on top of Solaris, I would enhance the Mac interface to integrate Java and an optimized Solaris and support this combination on PowerPC, SPARC, and Intel. Since Sun is very successful and profitable in the mid-end to high-end workstation market as well as the server market I would not change this drastically right away. Sun needs to make a plan to aggressively take on the work-group server market, especially Windows NT. The PowerMac product line is fine hardware but whether or not it can be profitable in the low end PC market is difficult to say. If it is not profitable then discontinue it or sell it to Motorola. This would be bad for Apple's home customer's in the short term but the Intel based commodity hardware is what is driving the profit's of the low end market down.

Date: Sat Feb 3 15:09:59 PST 1996
I would keep both the products for now and in the near future get the best from both worlds and make an ultimate OS. And have the OS called `Microsoft your turn.' I would think it would be an excellent merge. I Use SPARC-Solaris and have always been a Mac user. I think this is an opportunity for Sun to get into Home PC market. So, Yes it is good for Sun. For Apple? Well, if the financial troubles are what they are said to be, then Yes. Structure of the combined company: Let it morph with time. For the present let it remain two separate entities.

Date: Sat Feb 3 16:03:10 PST 1996
I'm of the opinion that Sun buying Apple could do nothing but good for Apple, and would likely be a smart move for Sun as well. I've long believed that Apple was the only company that could make a dent in Microsoft's dominance in the personal computer market. Now that Microsoft is intent on ruling the internet, where Unix is currently king, Sun has a rather compelling reason to have some influence on the personal computer market. Taking the MacOS and porting it to multiple platforms, including intel, and SPARC could do nothing but good for Apple, and couldn't hurt the sales of Sun hardware either. I've been a NeXTstep user since the beginning and porting their OS to multiple platforms and becoming a software company helped them quite a bit. Apple finds itself in the position it's in now because it failed to meet demand of the profitable high end machines. It needs to scrap what its losing money on and focus on what it can make money on, and one of the things it can make money on is a superior operating system. If I had to choose between Win95/NT or the MacOS, I'd choose the MacOS without a doubt. PC hardware is cheap and plentiful and getting faster all the time. Porting the MacOS to many platforms would be a money maker and start eroding Microsoft's dominance of the PC market. Sun makes great servers. Apple makes great consumer machines. Both have a lot to gain from a merger.

Date: Sat Feb 3 16:09:09 PST 1996
Sun would be the dominant company. Apple would simply have to employ the same good skills as Sun and rebuild. The are dead in the water otherwise, and this is bad for Mac users, PC users and the computer industry as a whole.

Date: Sat Feb 3 16:21:30 PST 1996
Yes on both. The merger would provide Sun with consumer credibility in promoting Hot Java and other products. I would not try to compete with M/I and the clones at the lower end. Concentrate on the Mac O/S's superior skills and the platform neutral nature of Hot Java on the internet. I would license the lower end Mac products and get out of the peripherals business.

Date: Sat Feb 3 18:07:03 PST 1996
Apple has *GREAT* products. The Mac interface is still the finest available for ***Personal Computers***. The problem with Apple is that they've always followed the Sony Betamax Model of marketing. As long as they had insane profit margins, the decision makers pocketed their outrageous bonuses and yucked it up. When things finally went bad, they already had their big homes in the Los Altos hills, fat brokerage accounts, and so who cares if the company and the technology give way to DOS and Wintel? Apple will only get sold when things get so bad that the decision makers won't be able to make any other decision BUT to sell. Spindler went on and on doing things the Apple Way that lead to ruin until he was sacked. Why should the new management do any different? The ONLY company that Apple can merge with and hope to have a future is Sun because Sun, Unix, and Solaris are synonymous with networking and the Internet, which are the real future of all practical computing. HP Unix machines are powerful, but are still being sold to the main-frame on Unix crowd, and HP has no real progressive vision, which is what Apple and Sun are all about. IBM is the company that created AIX, need I say more?

Date: Sat Feb 3 18:56:22 PST 1996
Good company should identify with good and difference cultural technology environment. I don't think Sun should rule out the Apple culture. There is grass route user friendly image that Apple has lost in past view years. The Apple culture has to be restore; the innovative thinkers who would like to see this world differently. Sun has initiated this tradition on the technology level. But enough time to convert the corporate strategy not only in hardware but also in software. I am believer, of people force in culture. What Apple need is not brilliance technology that will satisfy the Wall Street primely. But to announce the world that Apple is the Culture of technology environment who could see this world in different perspective; more human, contemplative not competitive. To see the other last frontier of the world. This semantic apply for Sun. The technology course always been dictate by performance technology, but less in peoples culture. Apple should be the mass culture technology and Sun should be the leader and the example of the future computer technology. Try to believe in volume especially after you reach those perfection. Both of them should live.

Date: Sat Feb 3 19:48:37 PST 1996
the Apple division should concentrate on the mac/os and compatibility with solaris, sun should work out a solaris port to the powerpc platform, sun can make the high-end machines more intuitive and if Apple could make the low-end machines more powerful. Ultimately all that would remain of Apple would be the mac/os.

Date: Sat Feb 3 20:08:47 PST 1996
  1. Apple has never been good at reaching the masses. It has failed to court "poor" users who are unable to afford the Mac because of its high pricing. One of the "poor" users are students who would one day enter the working world and start using what they can afford when they were students - PC clones and MS software.
  2. They are also bad at advertising.
  3. Apple is slow is taking corrective actions.
  4. A merger would be good for Apple but bad for Sun.
  5. If a merger takes place, Sun would have a "lousy" product in their hands. At this stage, it is very difficult to fight with Microsoft and Intel. Both of them are too strong.
  6. I would not recommend any merger because it's bad for Sun.
  7. The only good reason that I can think of for the merger is this: "It will keep Microsoft and Intel on their toes".

Date: Sat Feb 3 20:35:53 PST 1996
Apple had a great product for it's time. That was years ago and they failed to keep in touch with the Market Place. Apple with it's fantastic product displayed an arrogance with it's price structure, charging a premium, therefore shutting itself out of a market where price is the deciding factor. Recent examples, 8 track tape vs. cassette, Beta vs. VHS tapes drives, Commodore vs. IBM PC, and finally Apple vs. IBM PC. If Sun feels they can revive Apple and offer a competitive product to the IBM PC at a comparative price, then go for it. If Sun is being absolutely realistic in thinking they can revive and evolve Apple to something better then go for it. I personally hope that Sun has 2 separate teams focusing on the reason to acquire or not bother with strong arguments on both sides.

Date: Sat Feb 3 21:28:17 PST 1996
I think the merger would be good for Sun. It would give them more presence on the desktop. Both Sun and Apple are leaders in Internet use and technology and combined, they should be able to exploit this area. If the merger were to occur, I think the first thing they could consider doing is porting MacOS to Intel.

Date: Sat Feb 3 21:29:05 PST 1996
Keep MacOS but port it to SPARC. With Solaris as a server OS and MacOS for the desktop, Sun then has both OS and hardware for the two sides of client/server computing. Offer a MacOS GUI for Solaris. Make networking as seamless as possible in both OSes and bring out Copeland ASAP. Make sure Sun understands both the PC market and the Unix server market and aim for excellence and innovation in both.

Date: Sat Feb 3 22:16:33 PST 1996
Make Apple the consumer division of Sun. Make the Mac GUI run on Solaris, and gain stability and standards compliance. Don't kill CDE, though - unless the Mac GUI replaces it in the major Unix vendors. Turn the Newton into a Java terminal/browser.

Date: Sat Feb 3 23:27:19 PST 1996
The merger would be a big win for Sun, giving them access to a ready-made stock of low-cost PowerPC workstations. The Solaris environment could be offered, by Sun, on $1500 machines for the first time. The benefits for Apple aren't quite as obvious, but still present. The biggest benefit, I believe, would be Sun's strong and insightful management team. The second would be Sun's ability to finally make the Mac (nearly) as crash-proof as SunOS was. Solaris, too, while they're at it. ;^) The first product I would dump from the combined company would be A/UX. ;^) I'd keep the product lines separate, but of course offer Solaris, along with 3-button mice, for the PowerPC Macs. MacOS on SPARC workstations would be worth considering, if MacOS has indeed become portable enough to not make this a nightmare. The SunPics printing business could be tossed as the abysmal failure it is. Adding network interfaces to Apple's strong printer line would suffice to have the second-stronger printer line in the world, next to HP. Some fallout in peripherals, such as disk drives, cd-roms, etc would logically take place. Since Sun and Apple were two of the earliest companies smart enough to standardize on SCSI, they have some synergy there as well. The new company would need to be more aggressive than ever in courting ISVs. Target-audience marketing campaigns would help get out the message that `SnApple' means business.

Date: Sun Feb 4 09:32:50 PST 1996
I do not think the merger is a good idea for either firm so I will use this space to address what I think are the real issues. I think Apple's fundamental mistake has been not licensing the MacOS to Clone makers a number of years ago while they still had a clear technological lead. I think that there is **Very Little** that Sun would gain if it bought out Apple. The MacOs technology is old and in many areas out of date. In addition given my familiarity with some of the O.S. libraries I suspect that code under the hood is difficult as hell to maintain. I think Sun's best hope for the future lies not with buying Apple, but with Java and other products that will help it leap frog Microsoft. I think both Apple and Sun should be looking to get out of the Desktop/Workstation/Hardware business or at least spin them off into separate companies and concentrate on new software (that runs on all platforms) and completely new ideas. Further I think with a fair bit of work, money and marketing Apple can still make the Newton a great product.

Date: Sun Feb 4 05:20:44 PST 1996
I think that it would give a lot to Apple. Sun is doing pretty good about marketing and managing, that is the main problem of Apple. If Apple and Sun can get over that, than the Sun won't buy a multimillion headache. Combined companies new aim should be to build a system which uses, the structure of Solaris, and the view of Systems of Apple. Hang on! Don't forget the microprocessors, and the architecture of the machines. If Sun and Apple can produce a chip with the power of SPARC, and an OS like I've told above, than why not? The products of Sun and Apple are great right now. As I can see, Apple is losing its power on Power Macs, and Macs. It needs some kind of a brother or a bigger company to keep Apple in the correct track. So that would gain a lot of things to both companies and that will make me buy the products of the companies. Both the Hardware and the Software of the both companies will be a HIT! For me!

Date: Sun Feb 4 03:44:47 PST 1996
You said it already - get the best GUI (the MAc GUI) to sit on top of the sun, and port all those wonderful Mac applications

Date: Sun Feb 4 11:40:29 PST 1996
A Sun/Apple Merge is ranks right up there with IBM and Microsoft with OS/2. Unless you want to make it work. What you have are two different operating systems and hardware that are as common as Windows and Unix. The only thing that has ever been good about the Apple/Mac's is the software and GUI. This could work with some frontal lobotomies and attitude changing at Apple. They could have dominated if it wasn't for some ego problems in the early days. However, when people are hungary....... What is the purpose of the merger? Are you going after Gates and his dominance of the market despite products that suck? If it were my decision, I would go for it by not merging the companies, but by injecting CORBA technology to provide an environment that enables interoperability with Unix and Apple/Mac. Sun has a powerful networking environment for multiple users work environment. Mac/Apple have the desktop GUI, document systems and so forth a lot of people love. Make them interoperable. OLE is the pits, Microsoft stuff sucks. You have the potential for a powerful environment to be created. You have no market in the desktop, and you will loose workstation market to idiots who think Windows NT is better and cheaper. So a merge could be good if it is managed right.

Date: Sun Feb 4 11:31:57 PST 1996
A merger with Apple would be a tragic folly for Sun. Sun would have to dump millions into Apple only to watch it fail in the end. Apples' precious few, but loyal users would lose faith in the product, and Sun would become unfocused as Novell did when it purchased USL. Sun has much respect in the industry as Novell once did because it has a history of being integrity-oriented and a provider of `best of the breed' technology. Sun is moving in the right direction with regard to hardware, software, system management and internet tools. Mixing Apple product lines in with Sun would only cause confusion, disarray and disappointment in the end.

Date: Sun Feb 4 10:37:37 PST 1996
In my opinion, if Sun bought Apple, Sun would be improved by offering a quality personal computer, and Apple would be improved by Sun's excellence in software design (Apple's software has seemed to have a lot more bugs lately). I would think that Apple should become the personal computer branch of Sun. I would keep the current Sun product line, not make the current Apple computers except for the Power Mac 7500, 8500, and 9500 (and possibly improve those), make Solaris available for current and new (modified 7, 8, 9500s) Power Macintoshes, and make the new MacOS (Copeland) available for SPARC.

Date: Sun Feb 4 04:05:24 PST 1996
GUI from Apple, Networking. from Sun

Date: Sun Feb 4 14:06:52 PST 1996
Apple needs to be an o/s software vendor. Let others make the hardware. Ideally the Mac O/S should be adapted to run on multiple RISC machines. If they can make it run on the PowerPC processor it should run on SPARC and others. I seriously considered buying a Mac if Sun had purchased Apple. Apple needs market share if it is to survive. The O/S is the key, not the hardware. Look at Microsoft. Apple may be sliding so fast that no company would want it. If Sun buys it, it should use the Mac O/S for its SPARC computers but get IBM, HP, MIPS, DEC Alpha versions out there, quickly!

Date: Sun Feb 4 15:10:39 PST 1996
Sun would bail out Apple but I have no idea what Sun would want with Apple.

Date: Sun Feb 4 15:11:43 PST 1996
Call it SnApple Major on the Net browser and Web servers for the publishing industry base.

Date: Sun Feb 4 16:31:55 PST 1996
If the merger had taken place, it would have put the face of Apple firmly on the Net. This would have helped both parties because Apple is known for its user friendliness to its non-technical users and for its understated capabilities to its technical users. The merger would most likely have led to a migration of those who have been hanging with the PC/Microsoft "alliance" to the new platform that would have been offered by "SnApple"(?).

Date: Sun Feb 4 17:09:34 PST 1996
SPARC-arch products should be the high-end; apps which require maximum power (such as oracle databases, and massive analytics) should require sparc (or ultra-sparc) systems running some form of solaris. Mac-derived home units (running some amalgam of the Mac OS and Solaris) using an x86 or power-pc cpu, would complete the Sun product line. Newton PDAs would link the mobile user with the networked system. Appletalk networking should be phased into a "standard" ethernet arch. Senior Apple management, long isolated from the "real world" should be replaced by proven market- driven executives.

Date: Sun Feb 4 17:32:51 PST 1996
One of the basic problem Apple has is being too late to market with their OS releases. Copeland (MacOS 8.0) was supposed to be here last year, it is now expected late `96 which means 97 (maybe). At this rate I might as well switch to MS. One of Suns problem is the lack of Office automation products e.g. MS Office. While the performance of Office on a 68K Mac is a dog, a native version on SPARC would be great. I currently use MAE on a SPARC5. I also have a IIfx sitting beside it. About the only thing I still use the Mac for is word and excel. These are just too slow under MAE. Ideally I would like to see MAE or better a MacOS port to Solaris (i.e., part of Solaris not a separate OS) which would run Word et al. at native SPARC speed. I'm not particularly hooked on the Mac interface, it has some good ideas that Solaris/CDE could use, but it is the application base that I'd go for. Similarly a PowerPC/PowerMAc with Solaris/MacOS combo would be great. _Summary_ Keep SunOS 5.x with multiple contemporaneous personalities, e.g run CDE/OpenWindow/Windoze/MacOS in different windows all at the same time. Cap legacy MacOS kludges in next release. I.e. need to get memory protection, good VM, now not some time later. Get software development back on track. Get MAE going fast enough so as to be able to run current Mac applications (need to be 3 to 4 times faster). Get Mac applications native on SPARC. If the a MacOS API existed in SunOS maybe even MS would recompile to native SPARC.

Date: Sun Feb 4 17:55:48 PST 1996
Probably good for Sun, but that would be dependent on the management decisions of Mr. McNealy. The two companies should probably remain different entities in the publics mind however physically production and long term planning should occur jointly. Apple's fabled R&D should remain and independent group unhampered by upper management. It would be interesting to see how the Micro and Ultra SPARC could fit into Apples future, especially with the very recent transition to the PowerPC. This would be a concern especially because Apple has a very bad history of constantly changing hardware elements thus eliminating upgrades for past Mac owners (first-generation PowerPC macs vs. second generation).

Date: Sun Feb 4 19:45:26 PST 1996
For Graphic designers and home use, I recommend MacOS. For Researcher and high performance request, I recommend Solaris. And both OS are used in Network world with each other. (But Microsoft is winner after all)

Date: Sun Feb 4 19:50:46 PST 1996
I think the merger would be good for both companies. It would be good for Sun because it would give Sun a better chance to threaten Microsoft. It would be good for Apple because Sun's management would restructure Apple and push it to be the great computer that it always could have been.

Date: Sun Feb 4 19:57:06 PST 1996
In the long run, Sun's acquisition for Apple is good for both companies. However, the financial picture for Sun for the short run may be adversely impacted because of the declining demand for PCs, Apple's losing market share and over-stocked inventory.

Date: Sun Feb 4 21:00:56 PST 1996
Sun-Apple merger is good to both companies, I think. The name of the new company must be "Sunkist Apple Computer Systems" ;-)

Date: Sun Feb 4 21:23:26 PST 1996
Apple is Suns version of Perfect Office. Please don't do it. Apple is destined to be nothing more than a proprietary PC. Sun, in the last year, has finally become more than an obscure unix box in some MIT dorm room. You have an unblemished quasi-household name now. Don't screw it up just because you have some cash to blow. Bill Gates wants you to buy Apple. NT works on Power PC. While you are expending mass resources merging the two companies Bill will be quietly taking over the net. 1q - 3q 96 is when the deciding battle will take place. Java is cool but so was betamax. Microsoft has been quietly and furiously moving in on Java, Netscape and the rest. Netscape will be dead in two years. All it is tweaked freeware (Mosaic). One paradigm shift is all it takes. This is not the time to be looking at Apple. Sun needs to be developing VB like tools for Java. Borland has been stingy with info on Latte. So while I have been waiting for the Borland camp I have been reading and downloading at Take your cash, do a US tour, give coffee cups and tee- shirts away. Free Java seminars. Get some Airplay. Be cute, do something with Starbucks Coffee or something. NT's GUI update is going to be a tidal wave.

Date: Sun Feb 4 21:26:34 PST 1996
I am afraid that Apple has the problem with its cost system. I love Mac, but its cost-performance is in the low level cause it costs too much! And at last the spirit is vanishing. So i hope some other companies help Apple.

Date: Sun Feb 4 21:58:48 PST 1996
If Sun bought Apple, Sun should keep all Macintosh product lines because Mac is far superior machine than PCs by any means. One of the problem Apple has right now is shortage of Power CPU. Macintosh has been making a big transition from 68K to Power Macs. However, the small supply of chips unable Apple to meet their demand. There is a strong demand for Mac especially in the education field. Also artists, designer, multimedia professionals, and musicians prefer Mac simply because Mac can handle those people's needs. Therefore, once the production meets the demand with licensing and clones, Mac family will be able to increase its share in the PC market significantly. In other words, if Sun could buy Apple with around $28 a share, it would be a great opportunity to not only gain access to PC markets, but also increase Sun's revenue in long run.Also, Mac's popularity in overseas, especially in Japan, is a big advantage for multinational companies like Sun. The era of Internet, overseas operation is the key business aspect for the 21st century. If any companies have an opportunity to buy Apple, I would say just buy it, and help them making good supply and distribution systems along with niche promotion strategy, like focusing on Internet users. Apple needs this kind of integrated marketing strategy. However, they need it now because of mismanagement.

Date: Sun Feb 4 23:43:41 PST 1996
I believe a Sun-Apple merger would be good for both companies. As a user of both a PowerMac and SPARC20, I would love to see a Mac like GUI on a Sun workstation. Also setting up Internet services (i.e. World Wide Web, FTP, etc) on a Mac is so much easier than a Sun machine. If Sun can make it as easy as a Mac with the power of a Sun machine, they would sell a lot of servers. Apple's PowerMac, Powerbooks, and new Newton should be keepers. The other hardware can go.

Date: Mon Feb 5 01:12:16 PST 1996
I hope the merger should be good for both. I don't like to imagine that all the personal computers are aligned with Microsoft and Intel. I think only the Apple-Sun merger has the very competence against Wintels.

Date: Mon Feb 5 02:01:31 PST 1996
This merger is good for Sun and Apple, if Sun buys both hardware section and software section of Apple. I think MacOS has best user interface in the world, but Macintosh is second-rate hardware. I hope that this merger brings best hardware for MacOS and best user interface for Solaris.

Date: Mon Feb 5 02:08:19 PST 1996
Discontinue MacOS for 68K!

Date: Mon Feb 5 02:32:24 PST 1996
Make Apple more compliant with the rest of the industry They have a lot to offer and have got the right idea about making computers fun, easy to use and all software running on them looking and feeling the same. Keep the two companies independent but help Apple merge with the market more and MacOS be ported to other platforms etc.

Date: Mon Feb 5 03:01:04 PST 1996
The question is too complex for me, but I think the merger would be a good strategic choice for a future internet toaster. I'm not sure the results of the merger (i.e. the products) should ship under the Sun logo. But on another hand, you could do a lot without Apple's tech in the case of *-java based hardware. So, maybe the Apple advantage is its user-friendly interface (at least what's the world thinks). When people see the Apple logo, it speaks by itself. They don't ask for the specs. They trust Apple. As for products, they should continue. But I think two opposite (or complementary) lines would be o.k. Like powerful machines almost too expensive for everyone. The other line of product(s): the $500 thing that everybody talk about but never sees. Again, it's not necessary to buy Apple in this case. CU++

Date: Mon Feb 5 03:01:38 PST 1996
bad for Sun, Apple will still die. Apple cannot sell Java products through its channels as it is in the wrong market sector and knows even less than Sun above high volume sales

Date: Mon Feb 5 03:10:54 PST 1996
Internet business is important to support both client and server. Sun is string in server or network. But sun does not have best cpu hardware(SPARC) for future. Sun also does not have client hardware and software. Apple has good client and home computing technology but worst management of server or hardware manufacture. The good company for internet and network and server is Sun or HP. So, it is the best for both company that Sun or HP marge Apple. If Sun will not buy Apple, HP will marge Apple and get their client software technology. HP will introduce their home network computer or next generation client PC with Apple technology. If Sun want to keep top position of network and internet, it will be good idea to marge Apple before HP will marge Apple.

Date: Mon Feb 5 03:32:56 PST 1996
I think that merging company is good. In that case, Sun should not put a word in the management of Apple.(opposite also) Both companies has good technologies. The interchange of technologies of both companies will produce the next generations technologies. (e.g. Java and OpenDoc)

Date: Mon Feb 5 03:36:17 PST 1996
Sun has no compelling reason to buy Apple. It (Apple)doesn't fit the internet strategy that Scott McNealy has been following. If he needs to get into the low end of the market he can spend the proposed $2.8 billion he wants to buy Apple with and have endorse a cloner with a new brand name connected with Sun and attack the low end, or better yet, put out the internet toaster he's been touting recently. $2.8 billion is a lot of sgeckles to buy a troubled money losing market share losing enterprise like Apple. Nuff said!

Date: Mon Feb 5 04:23:26 PST 1996
Sun would gain a good introduction to the home computer market, while Apple could gain from Sun's hold on the larger computer market. Assuming that Solaris could be configurated in a way that MacOS users would appreciate, would the two companies get a strong position on two markets. The last few years have Unix for home computers started to be a reality. As it is today is the only hardware alternative an intel clone box. With a Apple/Sun cooperation would there be good alternative to intel/microsoft. If there existed a machine that both Mac and Unix, would I probably buy one.

Date: Mon Feb 5 05:43:08 PST 1996
Allow each to stand as is. Develop tools to integrate the 2 tightly and/or take the best of both worlds and create a high performance, user- friendly client-server environment. Sun has the performance - Apple has the user-friendly market. Then, stomp on Micro-squash!

Date: Mon Feb 5 06:25:11 PST 1996
Assuming Sun were able to dump large chunks of the Apple Management team then the merger would be good for both companies and very painful for a substantial fraction of Apple employees. I'd then go on a licensing frenzy with the MacOS -- I'd even look at providing a spec and compliance suite so the GNU folks could have a crack at it. Newton: I'd be in too minds about this, dumping (or more likely selling) it is probably the Right Thing, but it's such cool technology so keep it -- there's probably loads of opportunities for synergy. Mac Hardware -- keep at it, this is a cool platform. Listen to Dave Winer, okay so he's weird but cut him and he'll bleed seven colors. FFS do /not/ dump the Apple logo, we're talking graphic design up there with Mickey Mouse, the Batman Logo and the Swastika here, losing it would be criminal.

Date: Mon Feb 5 06:28:50 PST 1996
It would be good for Apple if Sun chopped management off at the knees and brought in a good "Sun" leadership team. Sun should benefit with another line that competes more directly with INTEL/Microsoft and with the SGI lines.

Date: Mon Feb 5 06:39:34 PST 1996
The merger should work for all concerned, or shouldn't happen. I'd keep the Mac, but enhance the hardware and definitely take a Unix approach to the O/S. Mac's have suffered from lack of true multi-threading/multi- tasking for too long. Keep the companies separate, at least for a while. It seems that Apple has a problem being a corporation as opposed to a commune. Once you've got the bugs shaken out; outsource the hardware and keep Cupertino busy cranking out software that runs the new O/S to the max. Take advantage of Sun's new power position on the net and let the new Mac buyers download their software. You'll have a winner!

Date: Mon Feb 5 06:41:50 PST 1996
Obviously, I am not an expert on mergers... so I don't know how corporate restructuring works. But here are a few of my thoughts.
  1. MacOS should stay on the PPC platform. If Sun wants to port it to the SPARC platform as an option for existing and new customers, fine... but keep it on the PPC platform too. Why? Because I think that the PPC platform could have a lot to offer in a year or so. Think of a box that can run WinNT, MacOS and Solaris... you can decide at boot... I can not wait for the day that I can buy one box that will allow me to run all OSs I want. For me, the PPC platform will be the first to offer such possibilities.
  2. MacOS and Solaris should stay separate. We use a SS4/110 for or webserver. Great performance... I like it as a serving platform. I can also see why corporations would want to use it as a desktop platform... especially in the financial and scientific sectors.
MacOS on the other hand isn't solid enough to use as a serving platform or even high-end desktop platform. I don't care what Apple says, MacOS is too unstable. MacOS does, however, make great sense for the common desktop. I think Win95 is a joke. The MacOS interface is still the best interface around. Period. Both Solaris and MacOS have their place. Keep it that way.

Date: Mon Feb 5 06:43:25 PST 1996
Improve the MacOS to compete with Windows NT.

Date: Mon Feb 5 07:06:18 PST 1996
I think the merger could be good for both companies, provided Sun has the vision to successfully integrate Apple's products. Sun has no solid low end strategy, apart from the notion of the Java terminal. The Java Terminal, while a good model for business is not particularly applicable to the school/home market, where people need -- or still believe they need -- copious local storage. Apple's products fit nicely into that niche. Sun would need to stem the defections from the Mac interface, repopularize that interface, perhaps integrate it with *some* Solaris tools and features. Sun could learn a few useful things from Apple. For example, how to make installation and administration not just simple, but basically a "no brainer". Sun desperately needs to work on its ease of administration. Standard Solaris installation and administration does not approach the Mac OS for ease of use and simplicity of operation. Apple also apparently has or is working on PDAs and other low end devices that could enhance the Sun product line considerably, if their introduction is properly managed. A possible stumbling block for Sun is loss of focus. Sun might also reflexively attempt to move the Apple product line from being Power PC based to being SPARC based too rapidly -- introducing further delays in Apple's delivery schedule, not to mention introducing considerable bugs in the software. Sun has historically been well focused. The challenge here would be to bring Apple's product line slowly into that focus. This would be harder to do from a hardware perspective than a software perspective, I believe. Sun must be careful to lower Apple's products' cost.

Date: Mon Feb 5 07:58:07 PST 1996
don't know

Date: Mon Feb 5 09:19:50 PST 1996
I think that SnApple would be an amazing fit. It would give OpenDoc a real chance to be grafted onto the CORBA 2.0 spec, making NEO an outstanding product for enterprises. Solaris 2.5 is already in Beta on the PowerPC platform providing the necessary "backend" for System 8.0, which is overbudget, overblown, and overbuggy from everything that I have heard. The current simple metaphorical intuition of System 7 could be easily grafted onto Solaris, perhaps running each System 7.5 desktop in a separate, threaded process space. The more important market for SnApple to pursue would be the embedded consumer systems that Java is so ripe for: with Apple's humanistic CHI design coding for Sun's techno-macho hardware engineers, quick delivery of successful products could be achieved, cementing Java's ascendancy. The maturation of this market will take time, but it does look like it could dwarf the current Wintel market by at least an order of magnitude.

Date: Mon Feb 5 09:36:26 PST 1996
It'll be good for both. Sun should sell the hardware divisions for Apple and keep the MacOS team. The MAE will make a excellent package for Solaris.

Date: Mon Feb 5 10:38:44 PST 1996
Apple has lost the "common" desktop to the Wintel duopoly and has lost or is losing the "glamorous graphics box" image/mini-market to SGI. Sun basically doesn't stand a chance on the desktop -- alone. Although it has its areas of strength. Apple basically doesn't stand a chance alone. The two together could shore up their respective competitive positions vis a vis SGI/HP at the high end and Wintel at the commodity end. In my opinion, "SnApple" should hang onto Apple's cash cows": the artsy oriented higher end Macs aimed at the fanatics who just won't use "an IBM" machine. Similarly, the SPARCstation should continue. The opportunity will be in a new platform, the "Snack" which could be a PowerPC or SPARC based, Mac or CDE GUI'd, Wabi enhanced front end machine on a network tied to monster Unix applications and file servers. I also think the java toaster should be continued. Somebody has to provide a viable alternative to the Wintel benign dictatorship. Neither Sun nor Apple can do this alone. Together may be a different story.

Date: Mon Feb 5 10:50:19 PST 1996
no comments...

Date: Mon Feb 5 11:40:24 PST 1996
If the companies were to merge then their identities should be kept separate. Apple has many loyal customers who might change if the Apple name and identity was lost. Sun also has loyal customers who may not like the Apple image for a serious server company. The match is good as long as Sun does servers, Apple does PC. Sun Workstations are not good for designers, home users, schools but that's OK its not Suns market. Macs are cool for designer, home users, schools etc but are crap servers with the exception of Web servers. They are very good for Intranets because they are very easy to look after and to not need Unix experts to configure. If Sun does buy Apple, Sun should keep the product lines separate but take the best pieces from either side across the divide. Sooner or later the Apple Mac and the Sun Workstation will have so much in common that they can become the same but let it happen slowly. Users and customers do not like change, both Sun and Apple have loads of customers so if changes are need just do it slowly. If Sun buys Apple and kills it the old loyal Apple customers will probably make it their personal aim to kill Sun (after Microsoft of course!!!) Long live the Macintosh, the greatest machine to ever run you applications.

Date: Mon Feb 5 12:07:52 PST 1996
A Sun-Apple merge would be a boon for the niche markets both companies have cultivated. Mac-OS for SPARC would bring a host of multimedia and desktop applications like PageMaker (yes, I KNOW they have it for SPARC already, but people in DTP have grown to love the MacOS interface) and PhotoShop to machines with the power of the SPARC processors. (Photoshop for Ultra! Yum!) I don't use Mac software, though, so that wouldn't affect me. What _I_ (Unix geek that I am) would love to see is Solaris for Mac. Such a beast would allow me to use a premier, multithreaded, delicious OS like Solaris, on a platform that I can afford a little more than SPARC, and without the hardware headaches of Solaris x86. That being said, I probably STILL couldn't afford either company's products on my little unix geek salary.

Date: Mon Feb 5 12:12:41 PST 1996
I don't know if a merger is really a good thing. The behemoth in redmond makes everyone react in fear, rather than think clearly. I actually like Sun the way it is, for the most part. Apple should: Sell off newton, pippin, all these Sculley leftovers in interesting but less than successful products. Kill all but two of the performa line. Put some energy back into Powerbook line. Narrow down their scattered cpu product line to 2 or three.

Date: Mon Feb 5 13:16:08 PST 1996
I think a Sun/Apple alliance would be great--a lot of mutual talent, great creative mix, and similar philosophies. A merger might also result in implications for server configurations. We used to have all Macs at our company (100+ employees) and with a 1/2-time person as administrator for our Mac server and everything ran fine. With our current mix of Novell/? our server goes up and down; our email has bugs in it, and it requires 2 full-time folks to service the problems with server and users's 486's. Meanwhile the number of users has remained constant... I'm sure there are a lot of small businesses out there that would like to keep on with their Mac configuration or at least a reliable counterpart. BTW, thanks for asking for input! I also have a 486 that sits on my desk at work in addition to a PowerMac at work and at home. So I know whereof I speak.

Date: Mon Feb 5 13:46:43 PST 1996
Apple's real hidden asset is the fanatical loyalty of its installed user base. It's main liability is complete and utter disregard for that loyalty. Apple's major short-term management obstacle is management's lack of leadership. If Sun can take control of Apple (and put an new arrowhead on all that wood) it can make the company hit the bull's-eye once again as it did in the past. Someone will take control of Apple; why not Sun?

Date: Mon Feb 5 14:38:53 PST 1996
Merger could not possibly be good for Sun, suggest Sun continue to fight the "next" battle rather than trying to salvage the loser of the "prior" war.

Date: Mon Feb 5 14:43:34 PST 1996
IMHO, Apple's decline is to a large extent based on their continued high hardware pricing and slowness to embrace a cpu more scalable than the 68k. Either licensing the technology earlier or at least developing a partnership with a big-time electronics-production company would have reduced the hardware costs, leading to greater market penetration. Coming up with yet more incompatible system busses didn't help, either.

Date: Mon Feb 5 14:51:23 PST 1996
Continue the SPARC/Unix stuff on its current track. I like Unix, although underneath it is not for normal people to administer. Stabilize the guidance of the Mac development to get some good machines out at a reasonable price and gain presence in the PC market. Right now I don't see how to merge these two approaches, but that will emerge in time. I have an original, beige colored, toaster shaped Mac. It was a great idea, and it really pisses me off that they should lose out to the dreaded "whipped cream on a road Apple". I'm about to get a workstation for home use anyway, but that's what I think.

Date: Mon Feb 5 15:41:51 PST 1996
Well, I don't know Solaris, but I know Unix and Mac. I love the Mac as front-end and Unix for back-end production. The manipulation of MM (MultiMedia), the creative process on a Mac, the end-result on a Unix- machine. This is a nice combination that surpasses all Wintel-things. It's a shame that JAVA is not widely available for the Mac. For that reason I use PERL on both platforms, portability and CGI-bins on the Unix- production machine.

Date: Mon Feb 5 15:47:45 PST 1996
I guess that this merger is better for Sun than for Apple. But, I don't think, this merger is such attractive and effective for both companies. Cause, I'm not what we call `an Apple user'. thank you.

Date: Mon Feb 5 15:49:52 PST 1996
Great for Sun if you can survive the dilution and the first 6 months of nightmares in management. Good for Apple... but mostly good for Apple users and Apple shareholders. Common back office, common manufacturing, merge sales and mktg with Sun and let Sun differentiate channels... you have learned well how to do that. I would push Mac OS into SunSoft and move Claris into the Java unit. I would lose the Mac server family entirely (and fast). I would lose all of the remaining 68000 stuff. I would look at selling eWorld and other "entertainment" oriented stuff.

Date: Mon Feb 5 18:21:06 PST 1996
Sun should buy Apple.But Sun must not take over the Apple consumer business. Sun had better handle Mac Os and software. Sun must keep being high end hard and soft company. Sun can open the Mac OS license to Asian low cost makers like Acer. Sun must keep own identity. Sun should make efforts to spread the idea which the networking is computing. So Sun open the Mac license to makers who want to make Mac PC which is easy to use and cheap. And Sun can keep to provide high end products for corporation with higher margin. The market will grow very fast.Because ordinary people will start to use network computer which is very easy ti use. That PC is made by Mac OS.That PC is good at graphics and sounds.At that time everybody can enjoy the network computer easily. So this market is very very big.So everybody wants to start the business in the network.(It must be internet) So Sun provides products,software,service,etc,etc, for corporations. I can see the great success of Sun. Go for it!

Date: Mon Feb 5 18:23:47 PST 1996
The main asset of Apple is the MacOS. The second is the ultra-slick boxes that Apple makes. Their main goal, to be a powerhouse in desktop publishing, entertainment content generation, high-powered communications, etc. will be achieved under certain conditions. As a leader in most of these areas, Apple requires huge R&D budgets. By increasing their profit- margins through selling the coolest machines in the market for desktop publishing, content generations, etc. they can establish the R&D budgets required to lead in technology and design. The main goal for Apple (and Sun) should be to get Copeland out as soon as possible and then port it to SPARC and the x86 architecture. WWW Industry Sun: server-class machines. Apple: client-class machines. Since the Internet seem to be of interest to most, there should be a clear strategy concerning it. Sun should keep doing what it has been doing (quite well): Provide top-notch server-class Unix boxes to businesses and institutions. They should target Apple computers as their main client machines. No under-powered, high-priced Sun boxes for the client-side market (compared to an Apple box). Structure Keep Apple independent, especially the R&D dept. The design teams can merge. The designs of Sun boxes have in numerous occasions surprised me. They are cool. Pump all the money possible into developing the MacOS and porting it. A possibility might be to make Sun boxes on top of the PowerPC (price/performance knocks off SPARC) architecture. Might want to license or even buy the PowerPC from IBM. Tell them to concentrate on their mainframe business. Keep/Throw Away.

Date: Mon Feb 5 20:04:36 PST 1996
I think the merger will be good for both companies. If Sun will have merged Apple, the new one should be independent of Sun and keep developing MacOS. I think the best way is to change the developing goal of Copeland and go straight ahead to Gershwin. And Sun should provide java for the new company and merge java and OpenDoc. Then it will be the greatest appearance against Microsoft.

Date: Tue Feb 6 08:49:23 PST 1996
I think a Sun-Apple merger would be good for Sun and Apple. Sun has (in my mind) been a company which has been far superior to their competition in usability. Their OS, and software development tools are far superior than that of HP, DEC, IBM. This usability advantage has allowed Sun to lag behind in Hardware performance. Sun is about 1 or 2 years behind the performance, but it doesn't really matter because they are about 4 or 5 years ahead of the OS and Software development tool curve. Apple has been similar to Sun in that it's software usability has outpaced it's hardware performance. One large cultural difference between Sun and Apple is the word OPEN. Sun is the leader in Open Systems, while Apple has very closed, especially with their Operating System. When these two cultures collide it may mean trouble. I do believe that Apple could benefit from Sun's Open Systems strategy.

Date: Tue Feb 6 08:23:44 PST 1996
keep product lines & engineering efforts somewhat independent, but build very strong & tight integration between Solaris servers and Mac PC desktops -- although it may already be too late, this probably gives corporate users the best chance to have a viable alternative desktop to "WinTel" (most likely have to revisit Mac pricing and be aggressive to create a competitive alternative as well)

Date: Tue Feb 6 07:00:22 PST 1996
It will be good for both.

Date: Tue Feb 6 06:44:53 PST 1996
Would a Sun-Apple merger be good for Sun? No. Sun should not lose its focus as a current market leader in the Unix Market and high end supercomputing. For Apple? No. Apple has a lot to learn and learning the Sun way would not be a solution. It has to be unique, just as it has always been for Sun. How would you Structure the combined companies? -- I would feel that they should be as independent as possible, so that they can respect each other and contribute to technology in their own ways. The best structure would be to operate them such that their performances are seen independently with minimal interference and interdependence. What Products would you keep? I do not Know. Discontinue? I do not know. Sell? Any prod. that would give Microsoft a run for its money.

Date: Tue Feb 6 06:09:35 PST 1996
I like company that made by hippies very much. I want Apple keep them the way of thinking of human, dreams and computers. Please don't disturb them. thanks.

Date: Tue Feb 6 05:44:01 PST 1996
Apple would provide Sun with a presence in the home and grade-school markets. Sun could push Apple toward standard architectures without losing their technical creativity,

Date: Tue Feb 6 06:17:57 PST 1996
I believe the merger would be good for both Sun and Apple. It would allow Sun to penetrate consumer oriented markets where they currently have little or no presence. I would also open Sun up to moving more advanced technologies to the educational arena. It would be good for Apple in that they would have access to OS technologies that would enhance the MacOS to allow Macs to penetrate high-end markets and produce more credible products for scientific and engineering uses. I would structure the company down along market lines, and have separate divisions that focused on solutions within each market. I would like to see a powerful OS that could be run on all the offered CPUs, an OS that could be modularized and configured for specific applications. I would structure the company along the following: I would have Apple drop products such as PDAs and multi-media peripherals, such as the QuickTake, and concentrate more on innovative and more powerful portable and laptop machines. Also, I would like to see Apple driven to provide sophisticated, yet easy-to-use development tools, that would reach a wider audience of potential developers.

Date: Tue Feb 6 05:47:27 PST 1996
The merger would be good for Sun. It gives Sun expansion into another platform that Sun can exploit. (There are a lot of loyal Apple users out there). What Sun has done with Intel based PC's, by porting Solaris, Sun should investigate the feasibility of doing the same with Macs. At one time, Apple was a very good company. However, they got lazy and now are suffering for it. The powers that be at Sun should take some time to establish a vision for Apple, how Sun can make it better by merging their respective technologies and provide outstanding products and services. The vision should be exciting and realistic. If one can be established, go for it. Sun is doing a great job and making me money (I am a shareholder :) ) Good luck!

Date: Tue Feb 6 05:37:53 PST 1996
Apple should be divided along the same lines as Sun is already. The Apple hardware division should be integrated into the Sun hardware division, enabling Sun/Apple to produce both SPARC and PowerPC systems. These systems should both support Solaris. The PowerPC platforms should also support NT. Forget OS/2 and Windows 95. With the next generation of PowerPC microprocessors, Sun would be the only hardware vendor capable of fielding 2 64-bit architectures. This also hedges Sun's bets with respect to the SPARC architecture. The Apple software division should be integrated into SunSoft. Now that MacOS has grown so big, it is no longer strictly interesting as an operating system. Take all of the important technology (including the creative developers) and put it into Solaris. Bag MacOS altogether and take the resulting Solaris++ and make it available on SPARC, Intel, and PowerPC.

Date: Tue Feb 6 10:41:31 PST 1996
Apple needs help. Going it on their own would just lead to the end of a dusty trail. My old Mac Plus still looks better than Microsoft Windows 3.1, it's not quite as good as Win95. Sun has no penetration into the consumer market, Apple has good name brand recognition. Sun must grow or it will eventually be pushed out of it's current market just as Apple was by the Intel/Microsoft team. More than just Sun, the Unix community itself is in danger of being displayed by Windows NT. Aggressive pricing combined with well thought out OS place NT as an attract platform for business. I wouldn't buy a Apple PowerPC today. But a SnApple PowerPC with a dual boot option (Solaris 2.x & MacOS) now there's a thought! Sure would hate to see Unix follow BSD into /dev/null.

Date: Tue Feb 6 10:55:34 PST 1996
Port the MacOS to SPARC and intel. Through away the Mac hardware.

Date: Tue Feb 6 10:59:48 PST 1996
Good for both, brings Sun to the consumer, let's Apple continue to innovate, keeps mediocre Microsoft monopoly at bay...

Date: Tue Feb 6 12:22:38 PST 1996
Move Mac's onto SPARC to get them out of the PowerPC rut. Use Sun's hardware expertise to bring the price of a Mac down to more reasonable levels and put it into areas it's never been very good at; networking and connectivity.

Date: Tue Feb 6 12:55:49 PST 1996
Sun should buy Apple if nothing else just to keep Gates from getting his hands on it and shutting it down..... that's just my little ideas on the issue...

Date: Tue Feb 6 14:04:31 PST 1996
I will keep both Solaris like a solution for servers and MacOs like the ideal OS for end user. I will add Unix compatible options to the Mac ( like NFS).

Date: Tue Feb 6 17:30:35 PST 1996
I think Apple is most probably the victim of bad management. I attend a University that is moving to an all Intel based platform, yet I continue to see day in and day out that Apple computers constantly perform faster, better, and more reliably than Intel machines for almost every application. I think the reason that Intel machines are used is simply because of their popularity. They were cheaper, earlier, thus everyone bought them. There are simply more of them in daily use. Apple priced itself out of the market twelve years ago, and has been paying for that critical mistake ever since. However, I think that Apple is still a financially viable company that is in need of new direction. They are technologically more advanced, at least from what I've seen, than Intel's machines, and thus an Apple-Sun merger would create a company that would have the best and brightest minds thinking together. Good luck to both.

Date: Tue Feb 6 18:48:53 PST 1996
Keep the Macintosh line using PowerPC Port MacOS to Solaris (e.g. like A/UX used to be) but of course allow X applications to run seamlessly. Keeps Sun experience in a finely threaded Multi-CPU kernel and use it in the new Macintosh microkernel. Take all of Sun's ideas about open standards and compliance to Apple. Port Solaris to PowerPC? (hmm you might to able to tempt a few RS/6000 users to load Solaris instead!) I'd delete Sun's low end workstations once Solaris was available for PowerPC Macintosh.

Date: Tue Feb 6 20:29:59 PST 1996
sun dominates servers, an area in which Apple is non-existent. Apple has the excellent end-user system, which sun lacks. Neither, alone, can compete against the competition (microsoft) which has adequate solutions for both lines. The competition is going to make damn sure that if you own end of the client/server system from them, you'll want to get the other from them as well. Sun and Apple need to integrate their platforms to at least the same degree if they are to maintain any presence in the long run. I think there is a 3rd area, which is applications. Microsoft can offer a winNT server/ win95 client + Office solution which is tightly integrated, and therefore attractive to many buyers. Claris and/or Netscape may want to come to the party as well?

Date: Tue Feb 6 21:28:16 PST 1996
don't combine the operating system! Keep selling SPARCstation lines! Create low-end workstations! If there is low-end new workstation, I really want to purchase that and wont run Unix on Intel box anymore!

Date: Wed Feb 7 00:04:25 PST 1996
I don`t know.

Date: Wed Feb 7 06:25:28 PST 1996
I think the merger would be good for both companies, Sun has the ability to continue R&D or Apples and manage a company in a competent manner (something Apple has failed at) The Apple computers would give Sun a launching pad into the home computer market helping them broaden their market share.

Date: Wed Feb 7 08:58:00 PST 1996
Back to Q 2: Sun needs a better low-end that would be consumer oriented. If you could blend MacOS and Solaris in the low end so that it was a single user only system that looked so close to MacOS of today that a user could not tell the difference that would be the best for that market. Of course in this single user, there would be network connections up and running, not quite the same as init level 1... Above that Solaris users could have a choice, MacOS style, OpenWindows, or Motif. Let them choose between MacOS and OpenWindows, but pay extra for Motif (and/or CDE). And either would have a more Unix feel to it. Back to Q 4: Even though they lost money, they still sold great. maybe lousy management, but I don't know if I could put all of it there...Plus whenever I turn on the TV I see adds for MS and Intel. If I watch TV for a week straight I might see one add for Apple and a few adds for Motorola pagers, nothing about their CPUs... Back to question 6: either Sun, or SGI, or Motorola... Interesting to note there are a lot of "how to connect your Mac to a SGI" networked product, especially in the high-end niche markets. But not much more than MAE and NFS for connecting Macs to Suns... Seems like SGI has a leg up. A columnist summed it up, Apple has K-12 and Sun has higher education. That is a perfect match. Get them hooked in K-12 with easy to use consumer products and them put them to work on high performance workstations as they grow and learn. Controlling the education market has kept both Sun and Apple alive... I am a two system family, my wife needs a Mac, I need a workstation. It would the best if both were binary compatible. That

Date: Wed Feb 7 09:59:58 PST 1996
Kill the MacOS for good and ship all Mac's with Solaris. Thank you.

Date: Wed Feb 7 10:31:24 PST 1996
Sun is trying hard to make it in the commercial computing market place. I think Apple would be a serious boat anchor.

Date: Wed Feb 7 11:27:08 PST 1996
the MacOS is for the "basic" office and home users. Solaris is for big networks, servers, scientific computing etc. Of course the both should work together by providing a simple possibility to port software, to work together in networks, etc. So I think Apple would be a nice `low-end' branch for Sun to offer an alternative for the consumer market. One thing Apple should definitely take over from Sun is license policy. The Mac OS should be spread as widely as possible. Refusing to sell it to the users is not the right way to make things work. I would definitely appreciate if Apple, in this sense, would be taken over by Sun.

Date: Wed Feb 7 11:42:00 PST 1996
Both companies have good points and bad points. Both have been on the right track on the hardware side for years. I think Sun needs to look to Apple as a source for the graphics and publishing that they are known for and Apple should look to sun for it's speed and expandability. If they both merge and use the UltraSPARC as they have been promoting it (a graphics, 3D, etc.) machine, they will really hurt SGI. But they need to look at SGI's GUI for ease of use. The only real question I have is will the prices go up or down?

Date: Wed Feb 7 13:12:43 PST 1996
Merger should benefit both Sun and Apple. cut off Apple's corporate head and paste the body to sun microsystems (highlight Apple's body, command-x to cut, select sun microsystems, command-v to paste). Corporate structure? I don't know what i'd do aside from the decapitation of Apple. Go through and cut out most of the Performa models and sell nothing less powerful than the 7100/80 style machine. It is still a very powerful tool, and not everyone needs a 6 slot PCI mac. On the Sun side, i don't know the products all that well... My main concern is that Apple end up in good hands and not swallowed whole. Sun seems to be the right size and attitude for Apple and Apple users' needs. Thanks!

Date: Wed Feb 7 14:58:18 PST 1996
Sun for the high end Internet market; Apple for the low end. I see little need for Newton. Ideas like OpenDoc could work well with both companies. Slashing the R&D budget at Apple indiscriminately would slowly kill it. It has to be positioned as being a better alternative to the typical Wintel pc. There are too many varieties of Performas that are only slightly different from their brethren, as in modem speeds. Come out with some wild looking futuristic high end models.

Date: Wed Feb 7 15:19:04 PST 1996
Apples problem is one of exclusivity and elitism...They need to take their OS and make it broader on other computers, and other manufacturers, and concentrate their marketing on their strong points rather than bragging that they are the easiest...Sometimes, I think their adds imply that if you are too stupid to start a CD ROM on Windows 95 you should buy a Mac...They should be able to do better than that. They must reorganize into an efficient manufacturing unit and include, not exclude, other hardware and software ideas.

Date: Wed Feb 7 16:52:42 PST 1996
Kill off Solaris on Intel, make MacOS work on UltraSPARC, Use Apple sales force to get MacOS based SPARC machines into high end retail in Boston, the valley, Washington and other sophisticated markets, and use their PR force to increase awareness of Sun beyond the Unix bigots (myself included). Turn over SPARC Processor licensing and MacOS licensing to a new unit that is measured only by the success of licensing sales, with no negative impact on hardware sales. If potential licensers thought they would be treated as true competitors then the likelihood of dedicating the resources to success would increase. If Sun does not do something soon, they will go the way of DEC and be loved by the cognescenti, but ignored by the masses.

Date: Wed Feb 7 19:03:34 PST 1996
Turn Power Macs into low-end SPARCs, with Macintosh GUI. Integrate Sun networking into MacOS. Offer Mac GUI for SPARCs.

Date: Wed Feb 7 19:24:34 PST 1996
Open Windows needs to take advantage of the advanced MacOS GUI. Making the most powerful OS in the world (Solaris) as user-friendly as the MacOS is an awesome thought.

Date: Thu Feb 8 06:37:30 PST 1996
It would save Apple and could (although risky) be the "push forward" for Sun (can you imagine IBM buying Apple ;-) I would keep an "Solar system" of companies. Sun could benefit from OpenDoc & the MacGUI in Solaris Apple, on the high end market could borrow the kernel. I would totally rethink the low end market for Apple (if any). Why not an low end Solaris Power PC?

Date: Thu Feb 8 00:09:39 PST 1996
I don't know but Apple could not live alone. It should be able to reach a critical mass, licensing hardware and supporting more platforms (or having a platform that supports more OS) Otherwise it will be compelled to go to a niche market.

Date: Thu Feb 8 12:23:18 PST 1996
The products that Apple and Sun now have does not compete with each other and both companies would probably gain on a merger. But the company logos and names should be kept apart as different trademarks.

Date: Thu Feb 8 14:18:20 PST 1996
I can't see that Sun would have anything to gain from the arrangement. Sun already has Solaris ported to Intel PC's, and has its own low-end SPARC workstations, but the both the OS and the processor are different from Apple's machines. Having the Mac environment on its machines (MAE) can lure Apple customers to its low-end machines, especially if some advanced run-time recompilation techniques are used (ala DEC's FX!32) to maintain comparable performance.

Date: Thu Feb 8 14:34:53 PST 1996
I'd like to seem more merging of their good technologies:

Date: Fri Feb 9 07:49:09 PST 1996
Sun and Apple both have fine products with a loyal user base. Apple can provide the PC interface that Sun now lacks. There is Wabi and others, but my experience with Wabi notes a mediocre product as the response time is too slow. Apple could/would be the entry level base for Sun and Sun could keep their SPARCstation at the mid to high range. Both use SCSI and did have Unix software, though Apple dropped theirs I understand. Mac running SOLARIS would provide the entry level machine and a smart terminal able to connect with data on the SPARC side. As a side issue, if Apple is allowed to die and virtually any other company other than Sun, will strip Apple of its assets, then the Wintel platform will be strengthened. This will be bad for Sun as it will only put more pressure to kill Unix and make NT the corporate platform of choice.

Date: Fri Feb 9 08:50:03 PST 1996
It would be a mistake to stop the PowerPC initiative that Apple, IBM and Motorola have begun. Specifically, the idea of a single hardware platform that will run MacOS, Windows (NT or 95), OS/2 and Unix (AIX) is one which everyone likes except perhaps Microsoft. Sun would be smart to port Solaris to that environment.

Date: Fri Feb 9 11:39:54 PST 1996
Ditch Apple's Server line. Make AppleShare Server for Solaris. Keep everything else.

Date: Fri Feb 9 11:52:47 PST 1996
no comments

Date: Fri Feb 9 12:45:45 PST 1996
Why are you asking me?

Date: Fri Feb 9 13:53:28 PST 1996
I think it looks like a good idea for both companies. Let's face it - Apple is going nowhere. Sun is going EVERYWHERE. Sun has everything going for it, Apple has everything slipping away from it. If Sun can take the Power Macintosh an turn it into a HOME/End User environment, and SPARC's and such can be the developer/advanced user platform. It sounds like a heavenly idea. I like Macs much more than PC's.

Date: Fri Feb 9 23:09:20 PST 1996
I think that a Sun-Apple merger would be good for Apple, not sure what use it is to Sun. Discontinue MacOS, port Solaris to the PowerPC chip.

Date: Sat Feb 10 14:52:37 PST 1996
I think it would be good for both companies, Sun could borrow some features but keep Solaris a different product and Apple I think needs to get some advertisement out there so they get their great product out there.

Date: Sat Feb 10 15:08:15 PST 1996
Shades of Commodore! Where the hell was Sun when the best mass-produced, preemptively multitasking computer (no question it was the BEST for the dollar), the Amiga, was up for sale? Sun *really* missed the boat on that one. Sun could have picked up the technology for peanuts. Hell, the Mac *still* doesn't preemptively multitask...I doubt it ever will...:(DOes Sun *really* believe there are *20 million* loyal Mac users out there, right now? If that's what Sun thinks, the company is in for a rude awakening. I've just spent the last year working for a major Apple reseller on the east coast. I can state with authority that there are presently *no more* than five or six million PPC Mac users out there--sum total. The "20 million" user figure is something that Apple's PR people started bandying about when they started to see the handwriting on the wall and started feeling desperate. The "20 million" figure *does not* apply to *current PPC Mac users* but rather to the ludicrous and misleading *estimated* number of *All Apple computers ever sold*....! Apparently, quite a number of people who ought to know better don't seem to know that the *only* figure of importance describing the Mac user base is the Power PC Mac Base, which is absolutely no more than between five to six million. Why? Because 68xxxx-series Macs, let alone Apple II's sitting in forgotten High school labs, *won't run* NATIVE PowerPC software, and the Power PC is Apple's *only* present and future. All those other obsolete, non-upgradable Macs?--they just don't count. Period.

Date: Sat Feb 10 17:51:31 PST 1996
I would push a new line of Macintosh computers suited for business use coupled with high end business packages, i.e spreadsheet, and other business software. As well as more powerful teleconferencing packages unlike none seen before in the PC world. I would also develop new technology geared specifically for the Internet. Both companies would remain two separate entities. But both companies would use and benefit from each other's developing technology.

Date: Sat Feb 10 20:37:51 PST 1996
I have used Macs since "1984" and have been a long time supporter. I have however been skeptical of the mgmt since Jobs left APPLE. The hardware just hasn't kept up and many of the hot developers have left to go to my LEAST favorite company (that big nasty one in the NorthWest, too bad the floods didn't wipe out MS headquarters). Anyhow, I love the OS, the hardware just isn't doin' it anymore. My last happy Mac purchase was a IIfx. It was the BEST thing out there. I started selling macs into high- end TV graphics in `93. Avid Tech, Scitex Digital Video, Adobe, Radius and Data Translations have all done a good deal to make the Apple today's multimedia machine. Quark and Illustrator just flat won't run on anything else, BUT... the Mac still is on it's last legs. I am trying to help that. You see, I sell SGI. (I'm sorry, Sun wasn't hiring) Anyhow, I have been working with LOTS of post-houses, broadcasters, etc. This is the big $$$ market that Apple has been saying they were getting into to get their profits up. Well, guess what? NT and INDYSTUDIO are both doing their share to kill the Mac hardware. I am already seeing that. So... if you buy Apple, which I think would be a generally good thing granted you didn't spend a lot and could leverage their debt out of the deal, or could make the net purchase into a positive thing, you should shoot Apple's salerep at Motorola and port to SPARC. Better yet, just steal the GUI and put it "on top of" Solaris. Your beta GUI sucks anyway. Drop it in favor of the MacGUI.

Date: Sat Feb 10 20:38:14 PST 1996
I have used Macs since "1984" and have been a long time supporter. I have however been skeptical of the mgmt since Jobs left APPLE. The hardware just hasn't kept up and many of the hot developers have left to go to my LEAST favorite company (that big nasty one in the NorthWest, too bad the floods didn't wipe out MS headquarters). Anyhow, I love the OS, the hardware just isn't doin' it anymore. My last happy Mac purchase was a IIfx. It was the BEST thing out there. I started selling macs into high- end TV graphics in `93. Avid Tech, Scitex Digital Video, Adobe, Radius and Data Translations have all done a good deal to make the Apple today's multimedia machine.

Date: Sun Feb 11 05:16:35 PST 1996
The merger will be beneficial to both the companies. Port the MacOS to run on Sun SPARCstations. Push the PowerPC for Apple and SPARC chips for Sun systems, and see that both of them are compatible, (ie) the software- wise. Sun can enter the home market, which it doesn't have a presence now. As it is a leader in workstations, penetrate the small market. The know- how available with both the companies can be used to the benefit of both type of products.

Date: Sun Feb 11 11:50:19 PST 1996
I just hope if this happens that Sun has the fortitude to keep Apple running pretty much the way it was. Increase advertising and retake its lead in marketing that it had for many years. Apple sells solutions not as Microsoft does: They sell air and promises and do not deliver as they become thinner and thinner to be "all for all". Their corporate cultures are opposite to one another. Can they survive together? Good for both if they do not alienate their installed bases. Keep them separate but equal. Keep their wonderful Performas and reduce lower end some of the redundant middle of the road computers. High end Performas & high end PowerPC's. Make a Performa PowerBook. Encourage clones to fill in the blanks for them. Don't try to be like Microsoft-they are beginning to fail at what they are doing-BEGINNING, MIND YOU. Hey, what the heck, go and do it, but don't destroy a company that I've stuck with since 1985. Thanks for this opportunity and GOOD LUCK TO YOU! -- I have always admired Sun Microsystems and hope that one day I can own one of your fine machines.

Date: Sun Feb 11 13:41:54 PST 1996
I don't see Sun computers in k-12 or in homes presently in the near future. Apple has a clear lead in one of these areas and could keep a lead in the other if they had the right management. I think Sun could manage(focus) Apple in the right direction with better customer concentration to hold on to the loyal followers and then gain others. I hate the name "Performa" and would discontinue it, I would not have two computers configured the same with different names. Forget all this concentration on trying to make a Mac run DOS/Windows programs; If I wanted to run DOS/Windows I'd just go out and buy a PC to satisfy those needs. I would keep as much cross platform compatibility/connectivity with all computers as far as DATA transfer is concerned. I work in an environment where complexity is the norm and should be the exception. I tell fellow employees who feel important because they have tamed the wild beast(PC) that I wouldn't know the feeling because my 13 year old daughter is the System Administrator of our PowerMac.

Date: Sun Feb 11 16:38:19 PST 1996
I don't really know but I like the Mac OS much better than DOS or WinTel. Apple missed the boat when it did not port the Mac OS to the IBM clones. Sun seem a good company but will they keep the Mac ease of use, I hope so.

Date: Sun Feb 11 18:25:21 PST 1996
Yeah, yeah, you guys should buy Apple, because you have the dynamism that Apple has lost - e.g. Java. Its not good for the computer world, or the world for that matter, to have Microsoft dominate both OS and software. They only produce second rate products. The Mac interface and OS, along with Java, are first rate products, except that Apple management (Spindler, now gone) are second to third rate. So, good luck and all that. I don't own shares in either company, but I think that synergy between the two would be good if you folks kept the Mac logo (14 million loyal fans can't be wrong), OS, and added cross-platform compatibility for your Solaris system (if possible).

Date: Sun Feb 11 20:15:03 PST 1996
As a Sun Shareholder, I'd prefer Sun stay out of the consumer computer market.

Date: Sun Feb 11 22:28:39 PST 1996
Such a merger would be good for both companies - and good for end users. Sun would have better contact through the Apple name and product structure to the everyday user. Apple would benefit from Suns ability to have vision (something Apple has) and make the vision reality. Apples ability to create machines that consumers want (ease of use, configuration, toolkit programming, built in networking, PDA innovation etc) could be well coupled with suns can-do attitude and systems. tunneling systems for Apple corporate customers building from Suns innovative IP routing & security solutions would be great. I would love for Power Macs to be compliant so i could run solaris on them. I would die for a Mac like (price and design) Powerbook that ran solaris... a developer dream.....and who knows maybe sun would learn how to make NIS user-able from the Mac interface and user analysis people!

Date: Mon Feb 12 07:58:40 PST 1996
I think that the macOS would be a great boon to solaris. I also think that sun makes great hardware but the software is a bit harder to use... questions arise: what bout the powerpc? will sun drop that line in favor of a sparc based mac? or will they keep sparc alive as a network server/mini range. I know in my brain-dead company (we have drunk from the Microsoft kool-aid [ref. guyana circa 1970s]) and gone to a microsoft centric line of servers using NT and workstations using win95 (which i think stole all the good stuff from everyone) and i believe that the microsoft marketers are pretty good at convincing corporate America to go microsoft... and microsoft is still big in bed with intel (sure they have RISC based NT, but the software support is NOT there for non-intel versions of developer software/tools) Of course my big question is what is Tog gonna do? hehheh...

Date: Mon Feb 12 08:27:26 PST 1996
I would drop e-world due to the fact that if e-world would create a policy that sucks, people would boycott Apple. Try to get more cloning on the way so people would have a some hardware manufactures to choose from. Take the jobs cut from e-world and move them over to Copeland get to Copeland to be released sometime soon. Keep cooperating with IBM and Motorola. (Perhaps even start cooperating with Sun and SGI on multimedia issues.)

Date: Mon Feb 12 08:32:25 PST 1996
I would get rid of the newton line, most of Apples upper management, and most of Sun's upper management, including both CIOs. I would attempt to structure both companies as if each department were a distributed object. This would eliminate the top heavy cultures of both companies. I would attempt to create a new operating system that was a cool for hardware services as unix, but that featured multiple interface shells, one being the Mac OS, Another being the Windows Explorer. Another being the Sun desktop. I would focus on working with a large communications company so that I could supply very high bandwidth to many homes. I might even take a huge loss to start laying networking cable on my own. I would primarily attempt to out do microsoft using CORBA vs. OLE, because they have many years of work to catch up on. And it would be obvious to the consumer when you changed the user paradigm with corba objects that Microsoft had turned into the IBM of the late 80's. Good CIOs realize when they need to sever relations, and start doing trench work. This is very difficult for someone with a superstar mentality.

Date: Mon Feb 12 10:05:35 PST 1996
Get rid of 680x0 line and stick to power PC and SPARC processors. Don't waste time porting Mac GUI to Solaris. Keep Solaris/Unix, but make it available on Power PC. Maybe make Solaris/SPARC for businesses/high end and Solaris/PowerPC for home, educational, etc. that requires a lower price. However, do like Microsoft is trying to do with Windows NT and make development tools look and feel the same, no matter what platform it's on. Windows NT & Visual C++ are about the same on Alpha, PC, HP, etc. But, I (like many others) prefer unix. Make Solaris uniform across multiple platforms and affordable and I'd say Microsoft would have a worthy competitor!

Date: Mon Feb 12 10:19:16 PST 1996
drop the Apple AIX product revamp the Apple Unix products let slide since A/UX using Solaris

Date: Mon Feb 12 11:22:59 PST 1996
Keep Mac line, but trim it down to fewer models. Combine best of both sides and develop a hand-held Internet device that runs Java. Re-establish educational market (that Apple had) and beef-up consumer avenues to increase public awareness of Sun (in the consumer market).

Date: Mon Feb 12 13:36:08 PST 1996
I think it would be good for both companies, that Sun should keep the Apple product line, focus it more towards the average man, less PowerPCs while still pressing it. Further I would think it -essential- that Sun produce a Solaris version that will run on the PPC processor. With a Solaris for the PPC, and, finishing the development of Copeland Sun would have met both high-power users, with Solaris, and high-touch users with Copeland, while giving BOTH full advantage of their chip.

Date: Mon Feb 12 16:39:49 PST 1996
Having used both MacOS and Solaris I think Solaris is the best if:
  1. You have either a good support network, or unix experience.
  2. A large monitor for X Window.
  3. High end PC or SPARC However MacOS is so simple that it is good for inexperienced computer users and on small (14") monitors.

Date: Mon Feb 12 17:38:01 PST 1996

Date: Mon Feb 12 19:51:52 PST 1996
Both companies have let their fundamentally friendly architecture be displaced by unstandardized shlock, that runs a lot faster and is therefore more popular. Delaying the release of the PowerPC chip, and of Chicago and Taligent were *stupid* for Apple. Sun also made a big mistake shoving Solaris down its clients` throats. Both companies need to take the example of Linux, and standard and publish major structures in their OS's so that users and programmers can comfortably manipulate them. Both companies should do what they know how to do: sharp, friendly workstations. As Linux is ported to the Mac, Sun should continue to develop new physical architectures and computing tools, but publish the standards that they use. Oh, yes: and drop open

Date: Tue Feb 13 01:55:03 PST 1996
The merger would be good for Sun, but probably not for Apple, who would be at risk of losing their unique and dynamic (if currently misguided) corporate ethos to the (sorry!) more turgid and bureaucratic Sun middle- management. Both companies have much to offer each other, but not in a structural merger. To my mind, the ideal partnership (I hesitate to say merger) between the two firms would have Sun as a benevolent overseer for Apple, the two companies remaining financially and structurally independent, but with an opening of flow between the two for employees and ideas. Sun has moved from a young, dynamic firm to a more stable, more "middle-aged" structure.

Date: Tue Feb 13 05:22:39 PST 1996
Keep Mac OS. Revamp the Hardware Platform.

Date: Tue Feb 13 07:26:21 PST 1996
Sun should continue its strong server direction, revamp Apple as a client compliment.

Date: Tue Feb 13 13:40:23 PST 1996
I think that in the short term (1-2 years), it would be viewed as a disaster. The 2 companies, I believe, compliment each other well. But we can't loose sight of the fact that while they are in the same business (computer hardware and OS) they are in totally different markets. If Sun could pull together a good market plan and a good technical plan, I believe that with a little luck and patience, this would be a GREAT merger. They could start to merge the Solaris and Mac OS together into an easy to use, powerful as hell OS. The key being time. It seems that to me that while the long term payoff could be huge, the differences might be too big in the short term for a successful merger. The Wintel monopoly would continue to roll on as Sun and Apple consider what to do.

Date: Tue Feb 13 15:08:21 PST 1996
IMHO, I think that an Apple/Sun merger would be a very good idea. Well, I'd prefer seeing Sun actually _buying_ Apple to make things easier to manage... Apple would profit from such an arrangement. Many people, especially large corporations, are slowly moving away from the Macs in favor of cheaper PCs running Microsoft's OSes. Unless a drastic change happens at Apple, this will continue to happen until Apple is no more than an exotic souvenir. Merging with Sun means having better means of fighting Microsoft in the OS war. Sun now has its chance to pierce in the personal PC market. Apple has a well-established customer base, and by combining Sun's internetworking expertise with

Date: Tue Feb 13 16:43:29 PST 1996
Stay as independent as possible. After all, the sun knows best how to shine, and the Apple knows best how to stay juicy. Who wants to buy sundried Apples? As long as it does not interfere with Apples traditional business, why not provide the Unix networks with Apples software. Both Sun and Apple have traditions in the educational sector. This could be a real success if, Apple remains the juicy one that we know, and Sun remains the network provider.

Date: Tue Feb 13 22:38:53 PST 1996
I'm a big Commodore Amiga user and now find myself using a PC. I've seen excellent technology wasted because of mismanagement within the company. Apple supplies as the Amiga did, very capable technology. I'm not a big fan of Intel or Microsoft. I think IBM, Digital, and Motorola make superior processors. I'm still waiting for an affordable parallel processor home machine. Seeing how bad software companies are in writing decent code for the new faster RISC processors. Computers in the home are here to stay and in a big way. Their role will constantly expand and the need for power hardware is a first priority. That's why I'm happy to hear Sun and Apple may join forces. Sun is definitely a leader in computer technology and with Apple's bright ideas.

Date: Wed Feb 14 08:28:48 PST 1996
The merger would not be a good move for sun. Sun's strengths are in networking, servers, development tools, operating systems and high performance workstations. Buying Apple would divert Sun from it's key markets, which are under fierce attack from Dec, IBM and HP. Sun would find itself spending precious time and money trying to keep float a PC manufacturing company in very low margin markets. Buying Apple would be as smart as Novell buying WordPerfect. Apple should seek to off-load all PC manufacturing to third parties and concentrate on beefing up the Mac OS and developing applications. Licensing it's OS and box would allow it to move away from the low margin systems that it's competing against in the PC compatible market.

Date: Wed Feb 14 14:23:43 PST 1996
Apple's strength is its software -- not it's hardware. It would be most beneficial to Apple to retain the software and make it available on more readily available platforms: sparc, intel, powerpc et al. Much what Sun does with Solaris. MacOS caters to a different market than does Solaris. I can't ever imagine Solaris being used by a non-technical user whereas MacOS can be frustrating for the highly technical user. I think a merged Apple/Sun should find a way to integrate Apple's OS with Sun products and vice-versa. Apple should definitely get out of the hardware business as it's too much drain for too little return. Apple definitely needs to allow clones and fast! It's hard to say just how good for Sun the merger could be.

Date: Wed Feb 14 19:18:43 PST 1996
The individuals surviving such a situation probably would determine the best road to follow. Little is actually known about the viability of either development structure by those of us outside

Date: Thu Feb 15 01:44:16 PST 1996
Apple will crash one of these days, so the sooner it merges (= is bought) the better. I would drop MacOS, I would standardize the rest. I would build clones, to avoid losing the Apple installed base.

Date: Thu Feb 15 08:29:06 PST 1996
Sun could spin out a new OS that's based on the best Solaris and the MacOS have to offer, uses many of the Apple graphical metaphors, looks new and snazzy (marketable), and is more stable and powerful in the Back End than (but also more compatible with) DOS/Windoze. Sun would win in that SunApple boxes could be leading-edge Java machines. Sun could smash the indecisive culture at Apple and open up the hardware to a much wider number of manufacturers. Once the computer-using populace sees how much better such a box is than their wheezing Pentium, they'd buy. Apple would win in that they'd not shrivel up and die, as it looks like they will.

Date: Thu Feb 15 09:33:02 PST 1996
Apple fast becoming a niche market machine in DTP applications - Expansions and add-ons are difficult to source and usually involve a new machine PC's have some standards and many parts are available from many sources. Upgrades are possible (If you MUST!) User interface is not everything and the differences are now small between PC and Apple. If the prices is right - probably a good buy for Sun. Without Sun - what happens to Apple? What happens to Sun without Apple? Keep Sun and Apple separate - not a good idea to combine - usually results in a period of navel-gazing and everyone watching their backs etc. Unfortunately - the competition don't wait for your internal problems to be sorted out!

Date: Thu Feb 15 11:16:28 PST 1996
I think it could be good for Sun because of the consumer market that Apple has already established. Also my personal belief is Wireless Network devices like a Newton running Java based applications connected to a SPARC Server! For Apple well, they need to move into the Corporate market and Sun could make this possible. I don't think the companies should be combined, at least not for awhile, but they should work together closely integrating each others strengths into one another's products. I would keep the Newton platform, Printers, PowerBooks, and Performas as well as the MacOS GUI and market it for consumers. Then slowly discontinue high- end Macs and replace them with SPARC machines running a "Real MacOS."

Date: Thu Feb 15 11:34:14 PST 1996
  1. Sun would have a product that is synergistic for the mass of users: Things they learn on their Mac at home could be used in the office, Things they learn at the office can be applied at home.
  2. Apple would have a serious entry into the business and engineering worlds. They could expand their base in educational institutions to show how it would help users move into business and engineering.
The key is #1 above. Put a heavy emphasis on the synergism. Reduce the Mac's GPM to the minimum -- no profit level -- for a short time if that is what it takes to get businesses to install a base. Make it clear to BOTH staffs that this is the goal. Have parallel organizations initially. Offer incentives to Apple sales who sell a Sun and vice versa.

Date: Thu Feb 15 14:34:17 PST 1996
Basically Apple's domain of expertise has traditionally been at the Desktop. Sun's area of expertise has traditionally been in the enterprise wide networks etc. I see no real synergistic, relationship between Sun and Apple. Apple no longer has any semblance of dominance at the desktop market for precisely the same reasons the x86 market is so pervasive. Namely it's -- commodity Baby when product's are produced very cheap, and in large quantities, with reasonable quality. People will buy it. When large numbers of consumers flock to a specified niche... Developers have reasonable guarantee of success.

Date: Thu Feb 15 18:18:53 PST 1996
Hopefully, it would force Apple to learn who their customer is and support older machines. Currently, they're changing models over and over, losing customers by confusing them and taking people away from development projects like Copeland. Sun's purchase of Apple might make Big A focus on their business and customers.

Date: Fri Feb 16 07:41:48 PST 1996
I feel that both product lines have a lot to offer. I think for a single user interface, the MacOS can offer more than a multi-user environment. Apple's hardware is extremely fast, and I think that their software advancements are amazing. I do not know enough about Sun, except that their video on demand products do not support the Mac platform, yet! IMHO I think the two companies should remain separate and collaborate on projects together, ie video on demand, specialized hardware, etc. Maybe Apple and Sun can work together better than IBM and Apple have?

Date: Fri Feb 16 10:11:44 PST 1996
I would absorb Apple. Fix up MAE to run on a low end SPARC for now. In my opinion, a low-end SPARC is better than a high-end Mac. Then move on to a robust version of Mac OS for the Mac user population

Date: Fri Feb 16 03:10:23 PST 1996
I think Apple will have to open the AppleOS to other companies and to share the software with them.

Date: Fri Feb 16 13:28:17 PST 1996
Apple should focus on what it does best -- design a good OS. Third party vendors can do a good enough job supplying the hardware.

Date: Sat Feb 17 05:40:19 PST 1996
Sun and APPLE would, if structured right complement each other in the hardware area. Apple on the low-end side and Sun on the high. A movement to make the Mac-OS lay on top of Unix would make it the best interface out. I think (thought) that Sun had the expertise to accomplish this feat where others would fail. I have a lot of respect for both companies and now that the merger is not going to happen, I think that there still is a lot of synergy in combining talents in some technology sharing that could

Date: Sat Feb 17 10:31:01 PST 1996
I think a merger between the two would be good for both companies. The way I would structure the two companies is by leaving the two the way they are and create a third company in between the two and call it AppSun technologies. And the logo that I would create would the image of a sun shining down on an Apple on the ground with tree growing next it showing the growth of a new Apple. I would then use the new company to create a new type chip and design new type computer system that uses both Apple and Sun

Date: Sat Feb 17 18:09:44 PST 1996
A merger, of operating systems as well as corporate structures, might be a very effective opponent to Microsoft, and maybe it would be one driven by good sense instead of marketing dollars. The Apple GUI on top of Unix would be a wonderful tool. Apple's biggest obstacle is getting a ten year old OS onto next-generation hardware without crippling it. Sun's challenge is in not being ghettoized to the high-end/server market. Apple's strength is User Interface. Sun's strength is low-level OS and the distributed paradigm. The two together would be a killer match, and would allow for a really broad spread of products. Wider marketing channels would be pretty good for both companies too.

Date: Sat Feb 17 20:45:16 PST 1996
Apple's software/hardware co design works wonderful together! Where (I believe) the Apple developers would like to go, they require powerful computing. Sun would benefit Apple in this area. Sun would give itself exposure to a more home and small business market. Apple would also gain from Sun's superior networking knowledge.

Date: Sat Feb 17 22:56:46 PST 1996
Definitely keep the Mac OS pure, and get Copeland and Gershwin out. As for hardware, combine Sun's power with Apple's Mac hardware to create killer high end, but also work out a sound strategy for inexpensive low-end "home" computers. People still want to buy Macs, even home buyers, they just see the lack of shelf space, the troubles at Apple, and all the neato Microsoft commercials, and get scared off. If Sun buys Apple, I hope Sun isn't into restructuring, because that bad trend at Apple has got to stop so they can get some work done. Sun makes good, powerful machines. "Toy Story" used them. But they should realize that the Mac is a more popular personal computer. So Sun should not try to meld the Mac with its own machines for the low-end"

Date: Sun Feb 18 11:16:43 PST 1996
A Sun/Apple merger would be good for Sun bad for Apple. Sun should keep the Mac interface and some of the Mac internals to use for an internet toaster running Java with the Mac interface. Discontinue the Macintosh line.

Date: Sun Feb 18 15:47:35 PST 1996
This question involves more than an analysis of the financial synergy that might be created by a merger of two very unique companies. An analysis of the core competencies of both firms is required as well. What would each gain by association with the other? Certainly, Apple would benefit from the multiprocessor and graphics expertise at Sun. Sun, on the other hand, might benefit from Apple's historical access to the education and DTP markets. Also, Sun would benefit from the acquisition of a superior desktop OS like System 7-Copeland. However, would this really be good for both parties? If Apple wishes to augment its hardware development capabilities, yes.

Date: Sun Feb 18 21:13:51 PST 1996
Make Apple a division of Sun. Keep both logos, and let that division go for itself. If it fails, BIG write-off for Sun.

Date: Mon Feb 19 06:21:55 PST 1996
Become the simple client and server solution for the entertainment super highway.

Date: Mon Feb 19 06:23:17 PST 1996
I think the merger would be great for both companies.

Date: Mon Feb 19 09:21:33 PST 1996
Apple offers one piece of hardware that Sun needs: the Power Book, plus an online network. While Sun's Internet machine may do well, a cheap portable could do far better. Carry the Internet with you wherever you go! The hardware side of this proposal is a stripped down notebook with a modem and an optional cellular modem. The software side would mostly be online, much like that from AOL and other online providers. The portable would be designed to interface with its dedicated online service which would then provide connectivity to the Internet. This dedicated interface provider might also offer file storage and other services to users, allowing the notebook to perform other PC functions like word processing, fax, and spreadsheets via its online provider. Large companies might want to construct their own service.

Date: Mon Feb 19 11:16:23 PST 1996
In theory, the merger could be good for both companies. However, I feel Apple will probably benefit most from this.

Date: Mon Feb 19 21:27:41 PST 1996
The obvious benefit is that Sun would gain more market share on corporate desktops, the Mac is a damn good network client, especially on TCP/IP networks. Apple would benefit because it lacks quality servers and a multi user operating system not to mention a dearth of management tools. Both companies have a good background with courting developers to provide solutions for verticals such as graphics and networked simulation models. Both companies have also inspired a good share of maverick development which has contributed to both platforms. The biggest challenge would be for Sun to get Apple's management into shape. Scott McNealy is notorious for his thriftiness and this could cause more than a little unrest at Apple.

Date: Tue Feb 20 09:04:02 PST 1996
Use Apple Net and graphics capabilities, scalarity and experience ti use in Sun products. Apple as it is disappears.

Date: Tue Feb 20 09:07:04 PST 1996
To anyone who is familiar with the motorbike industry the merge would be similar to Cagiva taking over Ducati. They left the two companies separate from an external point of view, but internally Ducati benefited from Cagiva's better management skills and having more money to spend on R&D. Apple should remain separate from an external point of view, but internally they could benefit from: = Sun's better management. = Sun's greater professionalism. Apple have a tendency to through a product into the market and if users complain their attitude is "Sorry, I think you have confused us with someone who *could* give a damn!" This was all to evident with MAE which is superb, but buggy.

Date: Wed Feb 21 11:05:40 PST 1996
I think it would be good for Sun. A problem with Apple is that it is not into renovating new products and is hardly advertised at all compared to P.C.'s. It would be wise that they try and get Apple at a lower bid than Apple may actually be worth because Sun will have to do a lot to get this industry moving at a worthwhile pace. Sun is a smart company and they have all of the tools to make Apple what it once was, Successful. They should keep a majority of the products, but should renovate them and make it known that everything will be all right.

Date: Wed Feb 21 16:33:16 PST 1996
Someone has to help us all escape from the Wintel Dark Ages of Computing. Come on Scott, do us all a favor - merge with Apple and keep the Microsoft nuts off our backs.

Date: Wed Feb 21 17:54:09 PST 1996
Apple should get out of the hardware business and stick to software. If they do it themselves or after a merger that should be the end result. It seems to me that right now they need to restore confidence in the platform and a merge which would create stability would be a big plus. I would think motorola would be ideal.

Date: Thu Feb 22 12:37:13 PST 1996
I personally dislike Apple. Maybe it's because they try to make their interface too user friendly and their outrageously expensive boxes. I personally, a PC and Unix pusher, dislike MacOS because it takes away my right to know what I'm doing come from my fingertips. and not from a single button mouse!?! I like to, as you could say, go in knee deep into the gore then try to poke it with a 10 foot pole as you would be doing with MacOS. MacOS isn't a real operating system, it make me think of that Microsoft bright idea of "Bob" which both make me feel sick to my stomach. I would definitely not try to destroy a great product like Solaris by trying to integrate it with MacOS. The day this happens I will be switching over to a new Unix platform.

Date: Thu Feb 22 13:40:59 PST 1996
Sun would lose focus..... Apple has kept itself proprietary too long to live well with an open company like Sun The merger would be like two kids fighting.....a waste of energy on both sides with no clear victor only resulting in resentment on the part of Apple employees trying to fit into a Sun culture... Sun should stay away and let Apple sink...Apple made the choice to keep its OS secret, so let the marketplace do its magic. I think Sun should wish Apple the best of luck.

Date: Thu Feb 22 14:05:19 PST 1996
Keep them separate for the most part, but use the awesome TRUE plug and play technology that exists on the Mac, with the awesome power Solaris has and take Apples user interface and incorporate its friendliness into Solaris to clean and bland interface.

Date: Thu Feb 22 20:54:52 PST 1996
Drop MacOS, keep MAE and Solaris

Date: Thu Feb 22 20:30:38 PST 1996
Apple is the worst company that had ever existed, and the fact that they managed to hold on for this long is remarkable given that the company should've died long time ago due to its poor business strategy, lousy products, and extremely unfair "competition". If someone buys it, I don't think something is going to come out of this, unless Sun Microsystems is the acquirer. Who knows, maybe Apple is still good for something other than making useless products. Apple products the way they are today are pretty much useless pieces of junk in all respects.

Date: Fri Feb 23 00:31:38 PST 1996
I would keep them as separate divisions, however both could benefit from each others technology. (Sun's strong multi-user multi-tasking kernel, and networking knowhow, Apple's excellent user interface design, and "plug and play"-ability.

Date: Fri Feb 23 00:55:02 PST 1996
Keep: Power Macs, Mac OS, Newton OS Discontinue: 68K-based Macs Sell: Hardware-Monitors, Printers

Date: Fri Feb 23 06:34:23 PST 1996
Apple basically has the market cornered on GUI. The merger would a merging of R&D that would neatly fill out both companies portfolios. Combine Sun's new graphics chip with the Mac video marketshare, etc. I'd say the key is finding a really good productivity suite, as Microsoft has a monopoly at this point (though God alone knows why, considering the quality of the GUI.)

Date: Fri Feb 23 09:45:27 PST 1996
I think people who don't learn from history are doomed to make the same mistakes over and over. The reason Sun was so successful was basically because of its openness (as compared with people like Dec and IBM) allowing the users to make their own choices as opposed to shoving something down their throat. Wake up and smell what you are shovelling. You may make money in the short term with your toaster but I thought you had more vision than that. Remember, people buy computers to run software. If you want to merge with Apple, first make sure you can merge your product line so they can be run on either platform. If you can't do this, then what's the point? adios

Date: Sat Feb 24 14:09:07 PST 1996
The Internet is the future for any company, new or up and coming. A user friendly system situated with a software company that has strong performance in the internet medium will be in position to reap the greatest benefits from the coming surge of new users of the internet, most of whom will have little or no computer experience. I would greatly limit the number of hardware configurations that Apple has now, concentrate on the PowerPC support. Offer one or two basic models that can be configured by the buyer at purchase time and concentrate on positioning my company as "the" user-friendly internet source.

Date: Sat Feb 24 20:30:43 PST 1996
Why should Sun acquire Apple? Different cultures, products, etc. Sun needs to learn how to market consumer electronics for their internet devices, but Apple hasn't demonstrated much innovation or ability in this field recently. Apple doesn't need a merger - it needs to clean house of management and embark on solidifying it's computer base - make the money first, then explore neat projects like PDAs and Internet devices. There's very little in Sun's product line that should be dropped, and lots of slow Mac's that should be dropped from the Apple line and given to cloners to create the rock bottom price for educational and other cheapskates.

Date: Sat Feb 24 22:53:59 PST 1996
Sun is like Apple in that it has a descent market share, but not astounding. Both have reputations for creating rock solid platforms in the face of stiff competition. Although these two companies sell to limited clientele, they do not compete with each other. Apple could use some legitimate clout in the business community, and Sun, currently has no presence at all in the home market (not to overlook the fact that Apple has some very juicy technologies that could become standards if handled correctly). Sun needs an internet appliance and by a twist of fate, Apple already has one, and is a top platform of choice for internet and other multimedia efforts.

Date: Sun Feb 25 00:02:04 PST 1996
Continue with all products, but have the availability of the best of both sides be exchanged e.g. port the MacOS to Sun Stations and SolarisOS to the Macs. Eventually work on a single operating system using the simplicity of the Mac, and the power of solaris. In so doing, Windows NT will have some stiff competition. If Sun does not buy Apple, sun will have some stiff competition from Apple when the prep machines start selling! Read the WRITING ON THE WALL Sun, Wake Up!

Date: Sun Feb 25 02:07:03 PST 1996
If Sun could integrate Apple's resources into their new products which should be delivered to consumer market, Sun would get far more revenue from them.

Date: Sun Feb 25 04:47:47 PST 1996
Good for both: Windows NT represents a big danger for Sun in long term and obviously, Microsoft represents a danger for both Apple and Sun...

Date: Sun Feb 25 16:05:55 PST 1996
May the Force be with you!

Date: Mon Feb 26 00:48:18 PST 1996
Merge Apple with Sun but keep the Mac sw development intact. Sell out the hardware part with a Mac-OS license. Hurry up, save a good software!

Date: Mon Feb 26 04:56:38 PST 1996
The benefits for Sun would be a desktop with office automation as part of its portfolio. Also, Sun would benefit from porting solaris to yet another platform (PowerPC), and hence be looking at a greater marketing opportunity as the commercial operating system with most (?) platforms supported. The benefit for Apple would be high end power computing beyond 9500, and a more definitive position within the computing market- place. Combined, the company could give greater leverage on Microsoft to port Word et al to both product lines. A Client/Server alliance between both Apple (front end) and Sun (backend) could improve business prospects for both Mutual operating system ports would allow the benefits of Ma

Date: Mon Feb 26 07:51:21 PST 1996
Apple's Mac software products would gain by adhering to standards and be ported to other hardware platforms, including SPARC. Sun should manufacture Powerbooks with good graphics.

Date: Mon Feb 26 09:21:44 PST 1996
I would like to see a merger of the two OS's. Say a blend of the Mac OS and a Unix type OS, such as Solaris. Such an OS would run on both types of servers/workstations and benefit all users in the fields of productivity and usage of the Internet and other networks.

Date: Mon Feb 26 15:50:43 PST 1996
Apple could become Sun's Personal Computer division which should:

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