Thanks for your excellent post.
Overall I agree with you.However,there are a few things I'd like to mention:
The problem with bloat is one that will never be solved. As corporations grow, they continue to add to their software, features that their customers request. So, what might seem like bloat to you, is a great feature to another. This isn't just resorting to antivirus programs, but to all software. People call MS Office bloated, but you know, half of those features would not exist were it not for someone requesting them.
There is a solution to bloat:It's all in the way the programs are coded.As an example take the Mozilla Project.Lets say Firefox or Thunderbird.These are modular.(With plugins or add-ons)
You only add what you want.This leaves the choice of features totally
up to the user,rather than having a huge Program,where half or
more are features that you don't use.
You mention MS Office.For most people it is bloated.
However,when you take the modular approach,eg you would have a central control panel where you could add or remove the features as desired.With the proper coding,you would not have to reboot or even restart the program after you make a change.A simple refresh should do it.
But no,because of their proprietary nature,these developers.from MS
and others,won't change their ways.It's a mindset,nothing else or call it shortsightedness.
As to Symantec,same story.
You say that their Anti-Virus uses only 30MB of ram.Have you really added up all the processes and services that are needed to run this?I think you'll come out with more than 30MB.
Besides that,you're right,it's not the Memory usage as it is CPU usage that is important.
Anyway,with 256 MB of RAM,you can't be running any games or graphics
applications.You"ll soon be stalling(freezing) the whole works.
But in general your comments are well taken.Thanks.
Just another point of view,