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Summary:

US Federal Government plans to give away nearly $400 billion in grants, but only to those scientists and researchers who use Microsoft. The Grants.gov system of electronic applications works exclusively on Windows platform, while many scientists prefer Apple. National Institutes of Health had to drop a […]

US Federal Government plans to give away nearly $400 billion in grants, but only to those scientists and researchers who use Microsoft. The Grants.gov system of electronic applications works exclusively on Windows platform, while many scientists prefer Apple. National Institutes of Health had to drop a $600 million grant program because many filers were not ready for electronic filing.

Critics note that in contrast to the domination of PCs in the business community, Macs constitute about one-third to one-half of the computers scientists and academicians use. [ The Washington Post ]

Grants.gov is under construction by Northrop Grumman under a $22 billion 22 million federal contract and gets about million hits a day. Anyway this is amusing because the same federal government spent billions on an anti-trust case against Microsoft.

Sigh… there might be some truth to that natural monopoly argument.

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By Om Malik

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  1. Is there a conspiracy angle? :-)

    After IBM “bought the company” the promise made by PureEdge was “called into question”, the story says. Apple migrates to Intel chips. Inquiring minds want to know!

  2. Joseph Scott’s Blog » Blog Archive » Grants.gov Limited To Windows Monday, February 13, 2006

    [...] Om points out grants.gov bias against Apple. The portion of the Washingtonpost.com article New Grant System Excludes Mac Users that I was able to read was light on details, so I did some looking around at Grants.gov. It didn’t take much. [...]

  3. University of Wisconsin has a fix for Mac users at http://apple.doit.wisc.edu/grants.gov/

  4. Dave Schroeder Monday, February 13, 2006

    IBM’s purchase of PureEdge (now called IBM Workplace Forms) has less than nothing to do with the Intel transition. (As a side note, did you know that Apple was less than 2% of IBM’s chip business?)

    Actually, the IBM acquisition of PureEdue is probably the best news for Mac compatibility. Grants.gov is committed to having a cross platform/native Mac solution by November 2006, as is IBM, and this is what has been planned all along.

    IBM provides Mac versions of many of its enterprise products, such as Tivoli Storage Manager, and these issues have literally nothing at all to do with the Intel transition. I’m actually quite astounded people have been bringing it up.

    In any event, as has been noted above, the University of Wisconsin has released a standalone package for using Grants.gov on Mac OS X as a service to the community. The package uses Citrix client software and a special settings file to access the central Citrix server provided by Grants.gov, allowing users to access and use the PureEdge software via the remote Windows machine running Citrix server software:

    http://apple.doit.wisc.edu/grants.gov/

    Regards,

    Dave Schroeder
    das@doit.wisc.edu
    http://das.doit.wisc.edu/

  5. “this is amusing because the same federal government spent billions on an anti-trust case against Microsoft”

    Governments are truely angelic ;-), the right hand totally ignore what the left does…

  6. BillyBLOGirlardo » Blog Archive » Sue Microsoft, Just Keep Using Their Product Monday, February 13, 2006

    [...] Om has a good point here: US Federal Government plans to give away nearly $400 billion in grants, but only to those scientists and researchers who use Microsoft. The Grants.gov system of electronic applications works exclusively on Windows platform, while many scientists prefer Apple. National Institutes of Health had to drop a $600 million grant program because many filers were not ready for electronic filing. [...]

  7. Surely these groups should be clever enough to figure out how to submit their applications from a PC?

  8. Ya’all are just discovering this??? I’ve been howling about the Fed Microsoft bias for the last 12 years of my Air Force career. You can’t even buy a product that doesn’t run on Windows any longer in the AF. If enough people cared, we wouldn’t be in this Microsoft mess. Hmmmm, wonder who in the Gov used to be a major Apple user??? Hint, the guy who won the election in 2000. God, it’s so sad.

  9. I keep wondering how the IT folk in the US Government are compensated.

    It used to be on the numbers of people who were working for you. If you were a GS 15, and had 250 folk in your division, you received a very nice bonus, and you were at the top of the CS pay scale unless tou were a Supergrade.

    Now, the Microsoft pushers walk in, and show the GS 9-10-11 people just how to develop Web Pages that only respond to Internet Explorer, using Microsoft software to develop the web sites.

    After All, NOBODY ever got fired by recommending Microsoft.

    Now, IMHO, the crux of this problem is that IBM bought out the little Windows-only software development company that was producing the panes for this application.

    Come On!! What in the hell are you to expect when Apple threw away IBM’s chips and went for Intel?

    The problem still lies in the fact that the Government IT weenies are still under the control of Redmond.

    It’s been Microsoft’s stated desire, for years, to establish their own “standards” for the Internet so that others must buy into Windows XXX, IE xxx, and their offspring in order to business on the ‘Net.

  10. MacGrass » 聯邦政府資助網不支援Mac捱轟 Monday, February 13, 2006

    [...] 一成網站只能夠用IE瀏覽,一個網只支援Internet Explorer for Windows,在香港是慣常的動作,但在外地,卻是一個可能涉及歧視的個案。 美國聯邦政府新開張一個名為Grant.gov的網站,讓各院校的科學家申請研究經費。據AP報道,在美國有三成的科學家用Mac,但在Grant.gov網站申請經費,只支援Windows,不支援Mac,被各大專院敕砲轟。該新聞報道甚至估計,有數百份申請因此被拒於千里之外。有Blog友打趣說,聯邦政府一方面用幾億美元和微軟打反托辣斯官司,另一方面叫外商製作一些鼓勵人用微軟作業系統的政府網站。 香港銀行的網上理財、網上投注、政府網上申請Book場打波學Yoga甚至部份網上電視台,收了費用,但不支援Windows平台以外的電腦瀏覽,使用Mac、Linux平台的,是「自己囉o黎衰」。香港傳媒永遠不會報道這樣的新聞。 [...]

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