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20 Questions About Windows Vista

In This Issue:
1. Editor's Note: Not Such A Scenic Vista For Microsoft
2. Today's Top Story
    - 20 Questions About Windows Vista
3. Breaking News
    - Palm Releases Updated Treo 700p
    - Open-Source Software: Who Gives And Who Takes?
    - Google Almost Sounded Humble At Its Press Day Event
    - In-Flight Internet Could Renew Debate Over Phones On Planes
    - Mozilla Unveils New Firefox 2.0 Alpha
    - Word 2007 Adds Blog Posting Tool
    - Motorola To Release Mobile Java Framework Into Public Domain
    - Social Networking Site Targets Professionals
    - Brief: Skype Delivers Free Landline/Mobile Calls
    - CA Says CFO To Leave, Shares Fall
    - Sun Merges Server Groups, Names New Storage Head
    - Qwest To Acquire OnFiber
4. Grab Bag
    - Scan This Book! (The New York Times)
    - Movielink And CinemaNow: Hardly Worth The Effort (The Washington Post)
    - Could High-Def Choke Internet? (Wired News)
5. In Depth
    - Judges And Prosecutors Throw The Book At Hackers
    - More E-Mail Problems, More Fines For Morgan Stanley
    - Libraries Fight Limits On Providing Net Access
    - Supreme Court Vacates eBay Patent Dispute Ruling
    - Justice Clears Microsoft Of Vista Complaint
    - LAPD Chief Blogs For Better Relations
    - Creative Sues Apple For Patent Infringement
6. Voice Of Authority
    - IT Confidential: Is Technology Evil, Or Just Naughty?
7. White Papers
    - The One Essential Guide To Disaster Recovery And Business Resiliency
8. Get More Out Of InformationWeek
9. Manage Your Newsletter Subscription

Quote of the day:
"You may not realize it when it happens, but a kick in the teeth may be the best thing in the world for you." -- Walt Disney


1. Editor's Note: Not Such A Scenic Vista For Microsoft

Today's top story, "20 Questions About Windows Vista," only reinforces my gut feeling that we won't see any rush to upgrade to Vista. The software just doesn't offer any compelling reason for the vast majority of business users and consumers to run out and upgrade immediately.

Best-case scenario for Microsoft: When Vista comes out, there's a tiny bump in demand as the gotta-have-it early adopters rush to get the latest thing, just because it's the latest thing. After that, demand for Windows proceeds as before, with people installing the new operating system as a natural progression when they deploy new PCs. Multimedia features in particular should be attractive to users--that's become apparent in the last six months, as sites like YouTube and Google Video have made everybody into a TV producer.

In that scenario, Vista is a placeholder. It doesn't help Microsoft become more profitable, but it keeps Microsoft from losing profitability and market share.

Worst-case scenario? Consumers and business look at the big hardware requirements for Vista and the need to learn a new user interface, and, for the first time in decades, users are actively repelled by a Microsoft operating system upgrade. They decide to stick with Windows XP as long as they can, or they defect to the Mac or Linux.

Let's look at the situation in more detail:

Reasons to upgrade ASAP:

New user interface.

Early adopters will look at the Aero Glass interface, clap their little hands together with delight, and say, "Oooh! New toy! Shiny!" It's got transparent and animated windows and a 3D task switcher. It's got a Sidebar with Gadgets, small applets that can automatically grab and display information. IE7 is an improvement over the current version of Internet Explorer.

A new network center makes it easier for home users to manage and secure their networks.

The operating system has improved multimedia support.

New deployment and management tools for business.

Improved security includes an improved firewall, Windows Defender anti-spyware software built in, anti-phishing tools, and drive encryption.

Reasons to wait:

The new user interface: Yeah, I know, I listed that as a reason to upgrade. But for many users, it's a reason to wait, simply because it requires them to learn something new in order to be able to do the same things they've always done.

Corporate IT managers will find the new user interface especially problematic, as many users will require training classes to get up and running on Vista.

For more reasons to hold off on upgrading to Vista, read my post on the InformationWeek Weblog. While you're there, leave a comment and let us know what you think: Will there be a lot of demand for Windows Vista? Are you in a rush to upgrade?

Mitch Wagner
mwagner@cmp.com
www.informationweek.com


2. Today's Top Story

20 Questions About Windows Vista
What hardware do I need to support Vista? Is it really safer than XP? How much of the interface was copied from Mac OS X? We've got the answers to all your burning Vista questions, gathered in one convenient package.


3. Breaking News

Palm Releases Updated Treo 700p
Although it runs the same Palm OS as previous versions, the PDA sports upgrades in the browser, offers new E-mail features, and can work with the 3G 1xEV-DO networks of Sprint and Verizon Wireless.

Open-Source Software: Who Gives And Who Takes?
Businesses depend on open-source software, but they leave the work of writing the code to others.

Google Almost Sounded Humble At Its Press Day Event
From its need to communicate better with business partners and the press to its need for internal controls, Google is acknowledging it must change its ways.

In-Flight Internet Could Renew Debate Over Phones On Planes
With Internet access comes the possibility of Voice over IP. But airlines are wary.

Mozilla Unveils New Firefox 2.0 Alpha
Changes in the new version include close buttons on all tabs and a plug-in manager to more easily add and remove engines from the search box.

Word 2007 Adds Blog Posting Tool
The feature will be accessible from Word 2007's File/Publish menu and support direct posting of blog entries in Beta 2 to Microsoft's MSN Spaces and SharePoint 2007.

Motorola To Release Mobile Java Framework Into Public Domain
While most mobile phones support mobile Java applications, the frameworks for developing and testing applications varies among developers and device vendors, so Motorola is offering its version up in a bid to create a de facto standard.

Social Networking Site Targets Professionals
Members can create networks and share information just like at other sites, but CollectiveX also offers password-protected networks targeting organized groups ranging from large associations to small book clubs and social groups.

Brief: Skype Delivers Free Landline/Mobile Calls
Skype announced that customers can now place free calls to traditional landline and mobile phones in the U.S. and Canada. It used to charge a fee.

CA Says CFO To Leave, Shares Fall
Robert Davis, who was hired from Dell in February 2005, will leave two weeks before CA is due to report quarterly earnings. The company's CTO quit last week.

Sun Merges Server Groups, Names New Storage Head
Among the units merged are the Scalable Systems Group and the Network Systems Group, which is responsible for Sun's Opteron servers.

Qwest To Acquire OnFiber
The $107 million transaction, which Qwest said it expects to close on in the third quarter, will widen Qwest's footprint in the Ethernet market.

All Our Latest News

Watch The News Show

In this edition:

John Soat With 'Microsoft Minute'
Microsoft and the Justice Department reach agreement on monopoly issues, the Justice Department rejects Google's complaint against IE7, and IE loses a little market share to Firefox.

Doug Henschen With 'Service-Oriented Architecture, Part 2'
Top IT executives give their take on the top misconceptions regarding SOA.

Keyla Kirton With 'Grid And Bear It'
The GridWise project improves the efficiency and reliability of the power grid following the blackout of 2003.


----- The latest research, polls, and tools -----
Hackers, Viruses, Spyware...What's Next?
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4. Grab Bag: News You Need From Around The Web

Scan This Book! (The New York Times)
Despite the opposition of publishers and their lawyers, the world's texts are being electronically copied, digitized, searched, and linked.

Movielink And CinemaNow: Hardly Worth The Effort (The Washington Post)
There's never been a better time to get movies online--as long as you're paying NetFlix, Amazon, or some other company to ship a DVD to you. If you want to download the movie, however, you're going to be frustrated. Still.

Could High-Def Choke Internet? (Wired News)
More people are using the Web to transmit video, and lots are watching. As the clips get better, the trend is putting a strain on ISPs.


5. In Depth

Judges And Prosecutors Throw The Book At Hackers
Those accused of cybercrimes are facing serious charges. That could spell the end of the white-hat hacker.

More E-Mail Problems, More Fines For Morgan Stanley
The financial services firm paid millions to settle SEC charges that it destroyed E-mails and failed to cooperate with investigators.

Libraries Fight Limits On Providing Net Access
A new bill in Congress would remove federal funding from schools and libraries that allow children unsupervised access to sites that could reveal objectionable material. A professional group says this is redundant because another law already bans libraries from allowing children to view harmful content.

Supreme Court Vacates eBay Patent Dispute Ruling
The high court set aside the copyright-related injunction against eBay and sent the matter back to a lower court. One legal expert says the ruling doesn't constitute a major departure from existing law.

Justice Clears Microsoft Of Vista Complaint
Federal investigators have closed the case on a complaint filed earlier this year about Vista's "first boot" process, saying Microsoft allows OEMs to customize the operating system and to promote third-party middleware.

LAPD Chief Blogs For Better Relations
In a welcome posting, Police Chief William Bratton said he hoped to encourage dialogue between residents and the police department.

Creative Sues Apple For Patent Infringement
At issue is the user interface in portable media players, including those used in Apple's iPod, iPod Nano, and iPod Mini.


6. Voice Of Authority

IT Confidential: Is Technology Evil, Or Just Naughty?
John Soat says: We hear it everywhere: irrational fears that technology will be our ruin. IT is facing its own backlash, with concerns being raised about privacy and personal control.


7. White Papers

The One Essential Guide To Disaster Recovery And Business Resiliency
This white paper provides an understanding of IT and business continuity from concepts to calculations for the business impact of downtime and selection of the right software solution. Readers will be able to match specific uptime objectives with the easiest and most cost-effective IT strategy.


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