Is footprint still important for desktop applications?

I just read Tomas‘ blog entry titled Is footprint still important for embedded devices?
His answer is a clear "Yes." Well, what about desktop applications? Why
the heck are desktop applications so slow and memory-hungry?

Like Tomas, I bought my first computer in the late Seventies. I did
a vacation job for a month and bought the computer with a friend
(50/50), because it was so expensive. It was a Commodore Pet 2001
with 8kb of RAM. Unlike Tomas, I programmed it in Basic (Assembly did
not attract me). One of the first programs I got running was Joseph
Weizenbaum’s ELIZA. I
actually got a listing and I typed it in and modified it a bit. From
then on I was fascinated by the art of programming: Modula-2, C++,
Python, Java, showing a trend in the direction of higher level "more
expensive" languages and systems.

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