Follow up Communication:
Here are several letters I wrote to Ray Noorda and Jim Bills about the NovOS idea and the Digital Research buyout. None of these letters were ever answered. After the original proposal, they ignored me.
03-20-90 Ray Noorda Novell Dear Ray, I read the interview you did in Lan Times magazine today. I found your view on competition with Microsoft very entertaining. Especially your view of Bill Gates. I was wondering what your thoughts are on the Novell DOS we were talking about at NetWorld. Since you believe in competition, this move would give Bill a real opportunity for some personality development. I still think it would be the industries sharpest move. But, even if you don't go for it, if you can at least keep the idea alive long enough to get Microsoft back on track, then al least we won't get stuck with Windows. As of right now, DOS, Windows, and OS/2 are dead end products. One of the following has to happen: 1) Microsoft get their act together and come out with 32 bit DOS. 2) You come out with it and take the market. 3) Someone else will do it and take the market. I've got a few more ideas that depend on a 32 bit DOS that is done right. Two of them are looking 10 years down the road. Actually, one of the things I do best is come up with brilliant ideas. The hard part is finding someone to follow through with them. Anyhow, I've had a great time writing that specification. Sure would like to see you all with something to show at NetWorld Dallas this fall. Call me if you're still interested. Sincerely, Marc Perkel * President * Computer Tyme Inc. Fax to: 1-801-379-3951 =================================================================== 05-23-90 Ray Noorda * Jim Bills Novell Dear Ray & Jim, I'm following up again on our conversation at NetWorld Boston about a Novell Dos (NovOS). At that time I predicted that DOS 5.0 will be the hottest selling program in history breaking all software sales records. Dos 5.0 will hit the streets on June 11th and I would like to expand my prediction. I predict that by August 15 that more copies of DOS 5 are sold than the sum of all Windows sales to date. I wouldn't be surprised if DOS 5.0 surpasses Windows in the first 30 days. I also predict that Bill Gates will be the richest man in America by the end of this year and DOS 5.0 sales will put him over the top. In fact, DOS is what made Bill Gates the richest man in America. The reason that DOS 5.0 will be such a hit will be for basically one reason: 45k more ram. Therefore, if you came out with a DOS that gave the user 4 gigs of ram, I would think it would sell well. Windows is fatally flawed by design. OS/2 has a questionable future as MS and IBM fight over who has the "real" OS/2. Digital Research for some reason has always been to little to late. UNIX suffers compatibility problems that prevent software developers from providing a standard shrink wrap product they can sell in stores. I still believe that Novell is best placed to be the company that takes over the DOS market buy using a 386 based DOS that gets rid of the 640k barrier. I believe the NovOS specification is a very viable project. I believe the world will beat your doors down trying to buy it from you. I don't want to look back at this 5 years from now and say "I told you so." If it worked for Bill Gates it can work for you. I am leaving for California for 3 weeks. I'll be exhibiting MarxMenu at the West Coast Computer Faire and Netucon in San Jose. Call me if you're still interested. Sincerely, Marc Perkel * President * Computer Tyme Inc. Fax to: 1-801-379-3951 =================================================================== 07-24-91 Ray Noorda * Jim Bills Novell Dear Ray & Jim, I've had several calls into both of you and you're not returning my calls. I hope you haven't forgotten where the idea to get into the DOS business came from. I'm beginning to wonder if you're trying to cut me out of the deal. Paranoidly Yours, Marc Perkel * President * Computer Tyme Inc. Fax to: 1-801-379-3951 =================================================================== 08-02-91 Ray Noorda Novell Dear Ray, It's been 3 weeks since Novell bought out DRI and I still haven't heard from you. I am very concerned about this and I'd like to tell you why, and I'd like to get a response from you. When we met at Netword Boston, I gave you a plan to enter the DOS market. During that conversation you had said that you had toyed with the idea of having your own DOS but never had enough reason to pursue it. I then layed out the grand plan and noticed that you became a *lot* more interested in the idea. You asked me to write a specification and a business plan. And Jim Bills indicated to go ahead and test market the idea with the press as I suggested. The weekend after Networld, I wrote the proposal you asked for and faxed it to you on Monday. I also sent copies to the other 5 people on the list you gave me. Since then, I have attempted to call you several times. I talked to Jim Bills a few times and Marlow Ashton. They both said that you were still interested in the idea but were very involved with your IBM deal and were too busy to pursue it. I continued to get the same line until 3 weeks ago, I found out you bought DRI. Since then, no one has responded to any of my phone calls or letters. It would appear from my perspective that you acted on my idea and got into the DOS business. It also appears that you don't want to acknowledge where the plan came from. And I can't understand why. It is not untypical for me to come up with ideas like this. I've been a "boy wonder" all my life. I've always had a problem with people relating to my abilities. I starting building my first computer when I was 14 years old. I was 16 when I completed it. I entered it in a science fair with 20 high schools competing. I failed to win the grand prize and was later told by one of the judges that they didn't believe that I had actually built the computer myself. They thought my dad must have built it for me. That there was no way that a 16 year old can design and build a computer like that. I can't help but to wonder if this isn't a similar situation. You don't believe that I guy like me can cook up a plan to overthrow Microsoft's tyrannical rule of the software market. But from my perspective it was obvious that it was going to work. My primary goal for Networld Boston was to hunt you up and convince you to get into the DOS market. I wanted to change the course of the computer industry which I perceived was heading in a dangerous direction. When you bought DRI the goal was accomplished. The hardest part of the plan was getting you to understand it in a way that you would actually go out and do it. Do you remember my hook line? "Do you want to look back at this moment 5 years from now and realize that you walked away from the greatest opertunity in the history of the computer industry?" Remember that? Surely you realize that you are going to make several billion dollars off this deal. And that the possibility that Windows will be the OS of the future has now been killed. And you must also realize that the DRI purchase is just a starting point. This isn't my first big idea and it isn't my last big idea. Some of my ideas are so far advanced that I'm going to have to wait 5 years before I can even hope someone will listen to me. I gave you the DOS idea because it was "ripe" and you were in the best position to take advantage of it and I perceived you as someone who was smart enough to pursue it. The bottom line is that you are going to make a lot more money working with me than not working with me. I'm a rare resource and you just don't find people with my perspective every day. I think you might want to give this some serious thought. Sincerely Yours, Marc Perkel * President * Computer Tyme Inc. Fax to: 1-801-379-3951