Microsoft's attorney Richard Urowsky, took on US District Judge Thomas Penfield Jackson in a verbal battle last week and came out wishing he'd stayed at home. Urowsky got into deep water with Judge Jackson after saying the company had looked to government briefs in the case, and not the judge's order, for guidance in how to carry his instructions out. The DoJ is asking Jackson to fine Microsoft $1 million a day for failing to conform with his order to stop forcing computer manufacturers to bundle Internet Explorer (IE) with Windows 95. Microsoft pleaded innocent, saying it has complied by offering an old version of Windows 95 or a version that does not include IE files - a product the company calls "corrupt". An angry Jackson made it clear that he was unhappy with the software giant's response to his order, venting his ire at Microsoft vice president, David Cole. Jackson said: ?It was absolutely clear to you that I entered an order that required you to distribute a product that would not work, that's what you're telling me?? Cole replied:"In plain English, yes, I followed the order. It wasn't my place to consider the consequences of it." Urowsky told Jackson that Microsoft had reviewed government briefs in deciding how to comply with the judge's order, but before Urowsky finished, the judge interrupted, saying "what the government requested is not the same as what I ordered." Urowsky replied: "I beg to differ." After more discussion, Jackson said: "It is my language and my language alone that is at issue here." But Urowsky maintained that the company had done what the DoJ had suggested which was to remove all IE files IE and that is what corrupted Windows 95. Jackson repeated that the company should have followed his instructions, not the DoJ's. Jackson then asked if Microsoft had given any consideration to seeking clarification from him. Urowsky replied: "We gave very careful consideration to that." He added: "It is the government and not Microsoft that is the cause of any confusion that might have been created in the mind of the court and the view of the public." The hearings were adjourned until Thursday 22 January.
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