Letter to the editor

James Wojciehowski's recent letter to the editor [FCW.com, April 9, 2001] is misleading.

There is no "battle" of "Wintel" vs. Apple on the embedded systems front. Neither operating system is suited for hard real-time applications or most field data acquisition applications.

The type of processor is picked to match the application, platform constraints and performance/comfort issues. Illogical biases against any hardware or software company because of market domination is a very poor reason to base a decision on which platform to use.

We use Microsoft Corp. products both on PCs and Macs, especially for administrative support. For networking or processing, we use Linux on Intel or SPARC CPUs. Most of our data acquisition systems are on the QNX operating system on Intel or [Advanced Micro Devices Inc.'s] Athlon CPUs.

We use and support what is cost-effective, what we are used to and what works.

Ronald Richter
Environmental Technology Laboratory
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

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