Who Drew The Short Straw? (8/24/01)
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And awaaaaaay we go: "Redmond Justice" enters its bajillionth chapter today with the addition of a new permanent member to the cast... but who? Following Judge Thomas Penfield Jackson's abrupt departure under a dark cloud of having engaged in such judicial no-nos as yakking to the press, a federal appeals court booted the case back to a lower court-- and a new judge, who was to be chosen by lottery sometime today. (Okay, so it's not PowerBall, but try to stay focused anyway.)

The amusing thing is that just yesterday the Wall Street Journal was reporting that many of the eighteen eligible judges were awaiting today's lottery with dread. Apparently the Microsoft antitrust case is viewed as something of a hot potato-- or maybe a hot potato wrapped in barbed wire and coated in anthrax and flesh-eating bacteria. After having watched Judge Jackson become the center of some very unwelcome attention, it sounds like most of the circuit court judges were praying that their number would stay unchosen at the bottom of the hat.

But the fateful day has finally arrived-- so who's the lucky judge? According to a CNET article kindly forwarded to us by faithful viewer Carl Bond, Microsoft's fate now rests in the capable hands of Judge Colleen Kollar-Kotelly. (Say that out loud-- it's fun!) We don't know much about her, other than she has an entertainingly alliterative name and virtually zero background in antitrust law, but we can say this much: we can't believe it's taken this long for the producers of "Redmond Justice" to bring a woman onto the show. What do you think-- "random" lottery, or transparent grab for ratings?

Either way, now we wait and see. As the other judges all heave sighs of relief at having dodged a particularly intrusive bullet, Judge Kollar-Kotelly is going to have to decide whether Microsoft broke the law by tying Internet Explorer to Windows, and also what sort of remedy might actually prevent the company from shamelessly pulling this sort of stunt over and over again as it has since the dawn of time. Here's hoping she keeps the show as entertaining as Judge Jackson always did. If she laughs in court, that'll be a good first sign.


 
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The above scene was taken from the 8/24/01 episode:

August 24, 2001: We'll see you at the Woodfield Apple store opening tomorrow-- or maybe the Northshore one next week. Meanwhile, those rumored PowerBook price drops just became official, so the channel flush is on, and "Redmond Justice" gets a new face-- with a funky new name...

Other scenes from that episode:

  • 3263: Shopper's Bliss Overdose (8/24/01)   Ooooo, our cup runneth over with retaily goodness. As we've mentioned before, the AtAT staff just happens to be flying to Chicago tonight on personal business, but we're going to have a little time to kill before the big event-- say, from 7AM til early afternoon tomorrow...

  • 3264: I Got Flowers In The Spring (8/24/01)   Seeing as it's a relatively quiet Friday, let's revisit this whole "no new hardware" controversy again for a second. First of all, the latest development is that, as we predicted yesterday, Apple has indeed ended its "Burning Desires" promotion ten days ahead of schedule; sometime yesterday afternoon, the promo page magically transformed to report an August 24th end date instead of the originally listed September 3rd...

Or view the entire episode as originally broadcast...

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