Kids Today! Think They Can Take On an Empire

Here's the movie pitch: a Princeton professor and two twentysomethings take less than five minutes to outsmart the world's largest software firm. Actually, that's no movie. Late last month government expert ED FELTEN sat down on a sofa in the Justice Department "war room" with two grads from his computer-science program--PETER CREATH, 23, and CHRISTIAN HICKS, 24--and stuck a tape in the VCR. Up came Microsoft's demonstration of how Felten's program to remove Internet Explorer made Windows run slower, important evidence for the defense in the ongoing antitrust suit. Almost immediately, all three were off the couch. Simultaneously, Hicks remembers, they'd...

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