In This Issue: 1. Editor's Note: Apple Computer Is Secretly Plotting Global Domination. Or, Maybe Not. 2. Today's Top Story - Mozilla Fixes 24 Bugs In Firefox - Support Change Spells End For Mozilla Firefox 1.0.x 3. Breaking News - Microsoft Office Live Beta Gets Traffic Spike - Sprint Tracks Kids Via GPS Cell Phones - Intel Inks Deal With China's Largest Search Engine - Apple Upgrades Aperture Imaging Software - New Software Enables TiVo From Anywhere - Best Buy's 'Geek Squad' Accused Of Software Piracy - Q&A: Oracle President Charles Phillips - CA Buys Job-Scheduling Software Provider Cybermation For $75 Million - AOL Accused Of Blocking Critics' E-Mails - AMD Subpoenas Microsoft In Intel Antitrust Case - Analysis: Red Hat-JBoss Union Draws Mixed Reaction From Partners - Microsoft Updates Atlas Preview - Microsoft Sponsors World Cyber Games - Outsourcing Contracts Up, But Savings Questioned 4. Grab Bag: - Google Chief Rejects Pressuring (The New York Times) - China Bloggers Who Pursue Change Confront Fear And Mistrust (The Washington Post) - Hey, Hey, It's Michael Nesmith (Wired News) 5. In Depth: - Microsoft Updates Anti-Spyware Defender - Pirates Won't See Slickest Vista - World Of Warcraft Purges Thousands Of Cheaters - An Enigma Machine For Every Budget 6. Voice Of Authority - Software Security Groupies Kiss And Tell 7. White Papers - Accelerating Line-Of-Business Applications In The WAN-Challenged Remote Office 8. Get More Out Of InformationWeek 9. Manage Your Newsletter Subscription
Quote of the day: "Home computers are being called upon to perform many new functions, including the consumption of homework formerly eaten by the dog." -- Doug Larson
1. Editor's Note: Apple Computer Is Secretly Plotting Global Domination. Or, Maybe Not.
Apple Computer's recent forays into Windows compatibility and Intel hardware architecture raise some interesting questions about the strategic direction for the company.
This could simply be what Apple says it is: By supporting Intel hardware, Apple might simply be looking for price/performance that the PowerPC architecture no longer provides. And the introduction of Windows Boot Camp, which lets Intel-based Macs boot Windows, could simply be a way to win market share by recruiting Windows users to try the Mac, allowing those users to switch without losing compatibility with Windows software.
But does Apple have ambitions beyond that? Is Apple looking to win back its place on the corporate desktop? For a long time, Macs have been the platform of choice for many designers, software developers, the education market, and consumers, but Microsoft has owned the corporate desktop. Could Apple be trying to take some of Microsoft's territory? Analyst Tim Bajarin, of consultancy Creative Strategies, said Apple could be looking to increase its market share from 5%--where it's been holding steady for a long time--to 9% or 10%.
If Apple is looking at Boot Camp as a major driver for grabbing market share, then Apple's got problems. Apple Boot Camp is great software, but it has limitations. Apple is classifying the software as beta, which means it's not supporting it. Users need to install the software themselves, which will be beyond the capabilities of many business users, and they'll need to pony up a couple hundred bucks for a new copy of Windows above the price of the Mac itself. Boot Camp is not for everyone.
Sprint Tracks Kids Via GPS Cell Phones Dubbed "Family Locator Service," the $9.95-per-month service relies on Global Positioning System technology to pinpoint up to four cell phones, then maps their location on a PC or a parent's own cell phone.
New Software Enables TiVo From Anywhere DVR Everywhere, from Orb Networks, allows TiVo users to play and program TV recordings for free from any networked device, including work PCs, Wi-Fi-enabled laptops, and mobile phones.
Best Buy's 'Geek Squad' Accused Of Software Piracy A court order restraining the retailer's use of a system recovery tool was issued Wednesday by a U.S. District Court judge. The order stems from a copyright infringement lawsuit filed by Winternals Software LP, maker of ERD Commander 2005.
AOL Accused Of Blocking Critics' E-Mails A coalition fighting AOL's paid E-mail plans says the company has been blocking the organization's own E-missives to supporters. AOL says the problems were due to a technical glitch.
AMD Subpoenas Microsoft In Intel Antitrust Case Advanced Micro Devices is asking for a variety of documents, E-mail, and other correspondence related to Microsoft's software development plans, inclusion of AMD in technology planning, and financial discussions about AMD, according to the subpoena.
Microsoft Updates Atlas Preview The latest prerelease of its Atlas application-development framework includes a toolkit that offers precoded functionality for an assortment of common UI elements, such as drop-down boxes and collapsible show/hide panels.
Microsoft Sponsors World Cyber Games Microsoft Windows and Xbox 360 will become the exclusive platforms for the world's largest video game tournament, which draws more than a million competitors each year.
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4. Grab Bag: News You Need From Around The Web
Google Chief Rejects Pressuring China (The New York Times) Google's chief executive, Eric E. Schmidt, whose company has been sharply criticized for complying with Chinese censorship, said on Wednesday that the company had not lobbied to change the censorship laws and, for now, had no plans to do so. "I think it's arrogant for us to walk into a country where we are just beginning operations and tell that country how to run itself," Mr. Schmidt told reporters from foreign news organizations.
Bloggers Who Pursue Change Confront Fear And Mistrust (The Washington Post) Those trying to use the Internet to foster political change in China must contend not only with the censors, but also with the apathy, fear, and mistrust of their fellow citizens. Companies, including U.S. firms like Microsoft, Yahoo, and Google, face competing ethical and commercial pressures as they seek to profit from the Internet in China.
Hey, Hey, It's Michael Nesmith (Wired News) Michael Nesmith invented MTV, won a Grammy for a music video, produced cult movies Repo Man and Tapeheads, pioneered the Internet, and was the Monkee in the wool cap. He talks about digital music, MySpace, and corporate media in a Wired News interview.
5. In Depth:
Microsoft Updates Anti-Spyware Defender Tweaks in the security software include improvements in real-time protection to better watch key parts of the operating system for potential infection, and support for 64-bit systems.
An Enigma Machine For Every Budget Cryptology buffs who can't swing the cost of a vintage Enigma machine have free-of-charge options for enciphering at home like a WWII-era German intelligence officer.
6. Voice Of Authority
Software Security Groupies Kiss And Tell Larry Greenemeier says: Bet you didn't know that software companies, like rock stars, have groupies. In my April 17 article on software companies and the security researcher groupies who love them, I spin a yarn about several instances where researchers found their way onto the proverbial tour bus. Do the people in charge of IT security really want these groupies to kiss and tell? You bet. But simply blabbing on about flaws in a vendor's code to the nearest mailing list can do more harm than good. My story points to cases where disclosure was done properly, and where it's been detrimental to the IT community as a whole.
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5 Top Federal Initiatives For 2015As InformationWeek Government readers were busy firming up their fiscal year 2015 budgets, we asked them to rate more than 30 IT initiatives in terms of importance and current leadership focus. No surprise, among more than 30 options, security is No. 1. After that, things get less predictable.
Join us for a roundup of the top stories on InformationWeek.com for the week of December 14, 2014. Be here for the show and for the incredible Friday Afternoon Conversation that runs beside the program.