Like the Tour de France champ, Microsoft has strength and durability. But it isn't winning the races that count.
On the strength of the popular Kindle, Amazon says it now sells more e-books than hardcovers. What's being lost is the messy tactile narrative of how books are made manifest and cling to our lives, as "The Hobbit" did to mine.
A scaled-down MacBook Air would put Apple into territory traditionally occupied by netbooks.
Asking online users to pay for content hasn't worked so far, but iPads and smart phones may change their minds about the free Internet.