Saying they have already "gone the extra mile," officials from Microsoft declined an invitation to join the U.S. Senate's second hearing on anti-competitive business practices in the computer industry. Microsoft spokesman Adam Sohn says the company has already briefed committee members and answered numerous questions.

"\[Given Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch's\] continued attacks on Microsoft, it is not clear that any additional testimony from the company will serve any useful purpose," he said. Hatch has routinely criticized the company for its business practices.

Now that Microsoft is bowing out of the hearing, it's destined to turn into another Ralph Nader-style Microsoft bashing session. Scheduled to appear is long-time Microsoft hater Larry Ellison, along with Sybase chairman and CEO Mitchell Kertzman, and Lotus CEO Jeff Papows