The Iowa consumer class action against Microsoft resumed this week with testimony from the first live witness in the trial, Ronald Alepin. Alepin is a computer consultant and a technology advisor with MOFO in San Francisco. Groklaw has some interesting information about Alepin and his past dealings with Microsoft.
Alepin has been called to describe the tactics allegedly used by Microsoft to thwart and crush competitors. A potentially damaging part of Alepin’s testimony is his accusation that Microsoft’s "innovations" are really just Microsoft’s attempts to copy others’ programs and catch up with other developers.
Judge Scott Rosenberg did limit Alepin’s testimony in some regard. Alepin could not offer opinions on whether Microsoft’s conduct was anti-competitive, nor could he offer opinions on other legal matters involving antitrust cases against Microsoft. Alepin also could not testify on "what would have been" had Microsoft acted differently.