At a recent computer expo (COMDEX), Bill Gates reportedly compared the computer industry with the auto industry and stated: "If General Motors had kept up with technology like the computer industry has, we would all be driving $25 cars that got 1000 miles to the gallon".
In response to Gates' comments, General Motors issued the following press release, by GM's CEO: "If GM had developed technology like Microsoft, we would all be driving cars with the following characteristics:1. For no reason whatsoever your car would crash twice daily.
2. Every time they repainted the lines on the road, you would have to buy a new car.
3. Occasionally, executing a manoeuvre such as a left turn would cause your car to shut down and refuse to restart, in which case you would have to reinstall the engine.
4. Only one person at a time could use the car, unless you bought "Car95" or "CarNT". But then you would have to buy more seats.
5. Macintosh would make a car that was powered by the sun, reliable, five times as fast and twice as easy to drive.
6. The oil, water temperature and alternator warning lights would be replaced by one "general car fault" warning light.
7. New seats would force everyone to have the same size bottom.
8. The airbag system would say "Are you sure?" before going off.
9. Occasionally, for no reason whatsoever, your car would lock you out and refuse to let you in until you simultaneously lifted the door handle, turned the key and grabbed hold of the radio antenna.
10. GM would require all car buyers to also purchase a deluxe set of Rand McNally road maps (now a GM subsidiary), even though they neither need nor want them. Attempting to delete this option would immediately cause the car's performance to diminish by 50 per cent or more. Moreover, GM would become a target for investigation.
11. Every time GM introduced a new model car, buyers would have to learn how to drive all over again because none of the controls would operate in the same manner as the old car.
12. You'd press the "start" button to shut off the engine.