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a simplified definition of a Tweener is one that's between a Breaker and a Maker. It just seems to me that there is more room on either side of the True Tweener status (the absolute mid-point, if you will). Is it closer to a Breaker or closer to a Maker? But what sort of criteria do you use to establish that? Heck, one could even argue that our beloved Rule Maker Microsoft is both making AND breaking rules at the same time, deeming it as a Tweener (according to the simple definition above).

I don't have my book with me, but I believe the definition given in Chapter 9 for a Tweener is a Breaker for whom a legimitate market alternative has evolved. Under this definition, Microsoft is definitely not a Tweener. With a 90% share of Office and Windows, I think it's safe to say that there is no legimitate market alternative to these two products.

On the other hand, Mr. Softy is developing countless other products on the Web and elsewhere, some of which are in the Breaker stage (Windows CE), and some of which are in the Tweener stage (SQL). Thus, I look at Microsoft as being part Maker, part Tweener, and part Breaker. In fact, I'll bet that most Makers have Breaker and Tweener parts to them to ensure that they can stay Makers in the coming decades.

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