News & Commentary
posted in July 2007
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I Loved My iPhone But I Had To Return It
Commentary  |  7/31/2007  | 
As you may recall, I finally snagged an iPhone a few weeks ago. At the time, I was less than pleased with my experience. I had problems syncing my iPhone with my PCs. Many of you wrote in with some advice on how to better connect my Jesus-phone with my laptop and desktop. While I appreciated your help, it wasn't enough. After 10 days, I returned my iPhone.
Google Almost Gets What It Wants From The FCC
Commentary  |  7/31/2007  | 
The FCC set the ground rules today for the upcoming 700-MHz auction. While Google didn't get everything it asked for -- the FCC made progress toward opening up spectrum but stopped short of real open network access -- it came pretty close.
Intel Sees 2008 As Breakout Year For WiMax
News  |  7/31/2007  | 
Intel's carrier partners Sprint Nextel and Clearwire plan to offer the technology as a wireless broadband alternative to the 3G cellular networks.
MPack Banking Crimeware Infects 500,000 Computers
News  |  7/31/2007  | 
The hacking toolkit has been going for $1,000 on the Russian underground and researchers say it's now in the hands of 58 cybercriminals.
Laser Printers Linked To Health Risk
News  |  7/31/2007  | 
A study classified 17 out of 62 printers as "high particle emitters" because they released so much toner powder into the air.
Google, Others Mull Next Steps In Race For 700 MHz
News  |  7/31/2007  | 
The rules, which are expected to be published within a few weeks, immediately drew praise from some quarters and scorn from others.
Cranky Bosses Are Bad Business
Commentary  |  7/31/2007  | 
According to a new study, bosses in a bad mood are bad for business. Apparently, unhappy bosses lead to more employee turnover and other behaviour problems among employees. And US News & World Report blogger Justin Ewers suggests that these results are of special interest to smaller companies, "who tend to have more control over their work environments than managers at larger compani
Amazon EC2 Lets Users Sell Software As A Service
News  |  7/31/2007  | 
With Amazon's new Paid AMI Support, EC2 users can become a software or application service provider, selling access to their particular server configuration.
Joyent A-Twitter Preaching Its Shared Infrastructure
News  |  7/31/2007  | 
The 18-employee company is making a quiet change in the collaboration tools space especially for Ruby on Rails developers.
Zango Denies Claim That It's Flouting FTC Agreement
News  |  7/31/2007  | 
Spyware researcher Ben Edelman charges that Zango, the adware company formerly known as 180solutions Inc., is distributing deceptive software without adequate consent or disclosure.
7 Apple Briefs
Commentary  |  7/31/2007  | 
Learn to control iTunes using keyboard shortcuts that work in any app, take decent photos with your iPhone, and make a Wi-Fi hotspot on the fly using just your MacBook and a hard Internet connection. Also: Eminem sues Apple (again), the Adium IM client reviewed, and more.
Automakers Can Learn From Computer Industry's Mistakes
Commentary  |  7/31/2007  | 
Software is bringing cool new things to the auto industry, advancing such features as telematics and safety. Automakers also are trying to collaborate more on software standards, but it may not all be great news.
Poll Results on BPMN Portability
Commentary  |  7/31/2007  | 
There's no denying that BPMN is gaining traction in the marketplace. I see it in my training. I see it in BPMS and BPA vendors getting on board. But what's amazing about this is that it's happening without a standard way to store and interchange BPMN between tools. It almost boggles the mind that the creators of BPMN "forgot" about this when they started, and its current owners place model interchange far down the priority list...
Vermont Sets Five-Year Plan For E-Health Record Adoption
News  |  7/31/2007  | 
In its road map report, Vermont Information Technology Leaders identifies what's needed to reach a 2011 goal of getting more than half of the state's doctor practices to use electronic medical records.
Zero-Day Attacks Pose Most Critical Security Concern
News  |  7/31/2007  | 
Hackers came in second place, while malware and spyware grabbed a close third, according to a survey of IT managers by PatchLink.
Microsoft Submits Photo File Format For Standardization
News  |  7/31/2007  | 
Microsoft hopes its new digital-photo file format will one day replace the widely used JPEG format as the industry standard for electronic photography and digital imaging.
Business Objects Tackles Product- and Region-Specific Data Quality Problems
News  |  7/31/2007  | 
New Universal Data Cleansing option extends data quality initiatives beyond customer information.
A Dirty Job to Call Your Own
Commentary  |  7/31/2007  | 
Fans of the Discovery Channel's popular series Dirty Jobs know filthy work when they see it.
Terrorism In Second Life? Give Me A Break
Commentary  |  7/31/2007  | 
Here in America, we have our share of stupid journalism, but we have trouble competing in the global market. For evidence, I point you to an article in The Australian about terrorists in Second Life.

Comcast, County Clash Over Billing Dispute Policy
News  |  7/31/2007  | 
Montgomery County officials are concerned that the cable company's arbitration policy limits consumer action including class action litigation against Comcast.
Amp'd Mobile Subscribers Get Reprieve. Sort Of.
Commentary  |  7/31/2007  | 
Amp'd Mobile is still leaving the building, but Prexar Mobile has offered to step in and take over Amp'd's subscribers. Subscribers will be able to transition their service from Amp'd to Prexar by visiting Prexar's Web site and filling out some forms. Is this good news?
Are Printers Hazardous To Your Health?
Commentary  |  7/31/2007  | 
OK, now you have another reason to stay away from the office: According to the Queensland University of Technology, laser printers can be hazardous to your health.
Aruba Certifies Apple iPhone For Enterprise
News  |  7/31/2007  | 
Aruba said it tested the iPhone's WEP, WPA-PSK, and WPA2-PSK security, roaming, VPN connections, and portal authentication combined with public shared key encryption.
Company Sues Sony, Wants PlayStation 3s 'Impounded And Destroyed'
News  |  7/31/2007  | 
Parallel Processing Corp. says the cell processor developed by Sony, Toshiba, and IBM violates its patent for 'synchronized parallel processing with shared memory.'
Mozilla Issues Fixes For Two Firefox Bugs
News  |  7/31/2007  | 
Mozilla releases Firefox version 2.0.0.6 right before it's expected to announce new security tools at this week's BlackHat security conference.
Microsoft Windows Vista Fixes Leaked. Are They SP1?
News  |  7/31/2007  | 
The fixes were offered over the weekend to participants in Microsoft's beta test program for Windows Server 2008, but quickly leaked onto the Internet.
Alcatel-Lucent's Quarterly Results Are Down
News  |  7/31/2007  | 
The company reported a net loss of 336 million Euros ($460.3 million) in its second quarter, including a 3.6% drop in revenue.
Mario Bros. Game Really A Worm Attack
News  |  7/31/2007  | 
A malware author is tempting unsuspecting users to open a malicious e-mail attachment by offering up a romp down memory lane with Mario and Luigi.
Poll: Internet Explorer, iPod, Windows 95 Among Most Influential Tech Products
News  |  7/31/2007  | 
Microsoft products captured four of the top five spots in the poll, which asked techies to name what they think are their industry's most influential products of all time.
Foonz Offers Free Conference Calls To The Little Guy
Commentary  |  7/31/2007  | 
Not all cell phones offer the ability to make conference calls on the fly, but a new service from foonzMobile lets anyone initiate a conference call for free. How well does it work?
Analyzing the Evolution of SaaS and PaaS
Commentary  |  7/31/2007  | 
After my post last week on PaaS (Platform as a Service), I've been thinking more about PaaS and its relation to SaaS, and I figured I would back up a bit, and put things into context. I think we are moving in three clear directions. First, there's the movement from visual to service-based interfaces. Second, there's the movement to outsourced or virtualized business processes. Finally, there's the growing acceptance of on-demand platforms for applications, services, and now development and enter
A Service Pack For Vista? Yes And No
Commentary  |  7/31/2007  | 
Microsoft has been saying there is no trial version of a Service Pack 1 for Vista, but Ars Technica reports that The World's Largest Software Company has released a "sneak peek" of several patches on its Windows Connect download service for beta testers of Win
Twitter Turns Drivel To Cash
Commentary  |  7/31/2007  | 
Web 2.0 ventures have discovered a simple formula for success: encourage users' conceit that what they say, do, and think is interesting enough to share with others. This is how Twitter, a hot startup, turns a stream of drivel into cold, hard cash.
Sony, 3M Reach Settlement In Patent Dispute
News  |  7/31/2007  | 
Under the settlement, Sony and Sony Electronics have agreed to license 3M-developed materials for cathodes in batteries.
TIBCO Takes the Open-Source Route to Integrating Mashups and Composite Apps
News  |  7/31/2007  | 
After helping to set the standards of the OpenAjax Alliance Hub, TIBCO is taking its own PageBus publish-and-subscribe message bus open source. It's an important integration tool as developers envision componentized Ajax applications.
Court Ruling Supports Claims That Microsoft's First OS Was Stolen
News  |  7/31/2007  | 
A book that calls DOS a "rip off" of CP/M is legally protected opinion under the First Amendment, in part because it's based on some facts not generally in dispute, a judge rules.
Apple iPhone Out, BlackBerry 8800 In At NASA
News  |  7/31/2007  | 
The minutes of a meeting of NASA tech officials show that the space agency has determined the iPhone "not to be enterprise ready."
The CIO Role: Beware The Enabler
Commentary  |  7/31/2007  | 
I'm in a un-PC mood, so I'm thinking of IT and its relationship to business in terms of a dysfunctional family.
Windows XP A Shaky Bridge To Windows 7
Commentary  |  7/30/2007  | 
Post Pokes Pogue Over Positive iPhone Press
Commentary  |  7/30/2007  | 
A tabloid tempest in a teapot may be brewing, following an item in Page Six of The New York Post, which is shocked (shocked!) to discover New York Times tech columnist David Pogue praising Apple's iPhone within the pages of the Old Gray Lady while writing a book on the side about how to use the device.
Gateway Enters New International Markets
News  |  7/30/2007  | 
The company is selling its products through Tesco stores in the Czech Republic, Hungary and Slovakia, and is providing customer support through its European call center.
Second Life Loses Gamblers But Finds God
News  |  7/30/2007  | 
An Italian Catholic priest is urging the faithful to use the virtual world to get in touch with reality.
Diddy Done It
Commentary  |  7/30/2007  | 
According to McNewspaper, rap impresario Diddy is using online video to hire his next assistant. Publicity stunt? Bet on it. But still, there may be a trend here that "real" small and mid-size businesses can pick up one.
Microsoft's Open-Source Strategy Coming Into Focus
News  |  7/30/2007  | 
If Microsoft and OSI come to terms, IT organizations should not interpret this as a radical shift in Microsoft's long-term business strategies, analysts suggest.
FCC Prepares To Set Rules For 700-MHz Auction
News  |  7/30/2007  | 
The prospect of spectrum becoming available for wireless services already has attracted a lot of attention from major companies.
Class-Action Lawsuit Filed Against Postal Service For Alleged Privacy Violations
News  |  7/30/2007  | 
The attorney filing the lawsuit claims the USPS made employees' personal information available to various marketing firms.
My Custom Linux Distribution Chooser
Commentary  |  7/30/2007  | 
A couple of columns back I talked about how many people are daunted by the sheer number of Linux distributions out there. I argued that the total number of distributions that you need to consider are actually fairly small, and that it probably wouldn't be too tough to create a road map or chooser. Here's my first attempt at doing exactly that.
Daddy, I Want A Gold iPod!
Commentary  |  7/30/2007  | 
For the geek who has everything: An 18K gold iPod Nano, with accompanying golden docking station, remote control, and earbuds. The vendor, Xexoo, removes the case of the device, and replaces it with one made from 100 g of gold.

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