(Or is it Who copied whom? I never can tell.)
I always found the sheer amount of human effort in the Microsoft-copied-Apple interweb flamewars really funny.
First, the accusations: Microsoft stole X. And then Apple-copied-Microsoft responses. And the PARC history lessons. (Somebody should come up with the equivalent Godwin's Law for PARC and Windows/Mac OS flame wars.)
The OS-engineering world is pretty small. A surprising number of Windows employees have worked at Apple in the past. And vice versa. Are these guys stealing?
(The same happens at Boeing, apparently: A large number of Boeing engineers have also worked at Airbus. And the other way round.)
Another interesting note: Apparently, we hire an external company to do some of the Windows icons. A lot of those designers use Macs. (The Vista icons were a bit too Maccish for my tastes, which is why I asked around.)
Anyway: You-won't-believe-me time:
One of the Windows 7 features I came up with is also in Leopard. It is in this list.
(No, for obvious reasons I'm not going to say what the actual feature is. I like my job.)
I came up with the feature idea, designed it, prototyped it. My devs coded it (against the rules, very early in the first Win7 milestone, when we were supposed to do code cleanup and maintenance) and checked it into a side feature branch. A month later, the Leopard feature list is announced.
I swear I had no idea that Apple was working on the same thing in Leopard. How could I? Apple runs a pretty tight ship.
I'm pretty sure Apple had no idea about my feature. (Seriously, it is not the most headline-grabbing thing in that 300 list. It is a pretty handy feature, though.)
So, who copied who?