Commentary
Content posted in October 2006
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Google Goes Wiki With JotSpot
Commentary  |  10/31/2006  | 
Making Space At MySpace
Commentary  |  10/31/2006  | 
There are two good reasons for MySpace and YouTube to purge copyrighted video from their sites. One is, of course, that the clips in question are patently illegal and their distribution without their owners' consent violates copyright law. The other is that they take up an enormous amount of virtual and psychological space, and cleaning them out might create a vacuum on those popular social sites that could be filled by genuinely creative original works--a commendation that digital retreads of <
Selling the New Workplace
Commentary  |  10/31/2006  | 
Smartphone Frustrations Revealed
Commentary  |  10/31/2006  | 
We asked you what your smartphone experiences were, and wow did you have a lot to complain about! Nobody's denying that a smartphone is a good productivity tool--in theory. But in reality, the smartphone manufacturers and operating system makers have their work cut out for them. If they want proof, I have over 50 complaints sitting in my in-box that I've compiled into a list. The most common complaints are included here, so read on.
Intuit's Not Just for Small Businesses Any More
Commentary  |  10/31/2006  | 
Intuit QuickBase's general manager Jana Eggers calls it the "app gap": that divide between rich, complex enterprise apps and less complex workgroup tasks often handled using email, spreadsheets, and manual methods. For quick, simple applications that let workgroups in large companies manage sales, customers, and projects, QuickBase offers a library of hosted tools that can be used independently or in combination, knit together if necessary by a Corporate Edition management layer.
Tiny Web 2.0 Firm Identifies With Big Blue
Commentary  |  10/31/2006  | 
The upstart barter site Swapthing.com seems to have more in common with online retail behemoth Amazon.com than with IBM. Swapthing and Amazon are part of a wave of online companies with no brick-and-mortar roots redefining how consumers buy (or barter) products. But when it comes to the patent infringement suit IBM last week brought against Amazon, Swapthing CEO Jessica Hardwick equates her fledgling business
The Internet Governance Forum: Will Theory Lead To Action?
Commentary  |  10/30/2006  | 
The first meeting of the United Nations' Internet Governance Forum, or IGF, began yesterday in Athens and is promoting a very worthy agenda. Some of the critical issues to be discussed include: Who has access to the Internet? Who has control? What are the best ways to combat spam, phishing, and child pornography? How can we protect freedom of speech online--especially in cou
Do You Use Vista Or Does Vista Use You, Continued
Commentary  |  10/30/2006  | 
In the last episode of the ongoing soap opera, "As The EULA Turns," Microsoft was trying to explain what the End User License Agreement for Windows Vista really meant when it said you couldn't run Vista in a virtual machine. Today we hear Microsoft say, "No, when the EULA says you can only move Vista from one machine to another once, it actually means 10 times."
Better Batteries Not Included
Commentary  |  10/28/2006  | 
I came away from Wired's take on the future of the battery with a conclusion depressingly similar to our own coverage: Even battery innovators don't expect breakthroughs anytime soon.
From Our Blog
Commentary  |  10/27/2006  | 
Community Feedback
Commentary  |  10/27/2006  | 
Down To Business: A Note To Those Tech Pros Who Aren't Driving Jack
Commentary  |  10/27/2006  | 
Ever consider specializing in the law? Almost every major and minor tech decision of our time has a phalanx of lawyers behind it. The profession could use a few good men and women with the tech chops to make a difference.
Lost In The Shuffle
Commentary  |  10/27/2006  | 
5 Steps To Getting A Handle On The Smartphone Explosion
Commentary  |  10/27/2006  | 
The marriage between the cell phone and the PDA has resulted in the smartphone, a wireless productivity tool that many businesses can't live without. In fact, many consumers are also addicted to smartphones, relying on them for wireless e-mail and on-the-go Web access. But with a new model coming out (what feels like) each week, different form factors, and tons of new features, choosing the right smartphone can be overwhelming. If you're an IT manager looking to equip your workers with one of th
Four Steps To Data Security
Commentary  |  10/27/2006  | 
Here's some advice on setting your corporate data security agenda to avoid privacy pitfalls that can undermine any data management strategy.
Video Hoopla
Commentary  |  10/27/2006  | 
Oracle's Fusion Plan
Commentary  |  10/26/2006  | 
Oracle's John Wookey has pledged to keep the company's multiple lines of business applications going well into the future.
IT Confidential: Cybersavvy? The FBI Is Calling
Commentary  |  10/26/2006  | 
The feds are having a problem keeping up with Internet crime.
Lost In The Shuffle
Commentary  |  10/26/2006  | 
There's a human tendency to root for the underdog--to hope that the losers who start at the bottom of the heap, who have the odds stacked against them, can fight their way to the top and stand tall in victory while the credits roll. Thus, the popularity of Rocky, the Mets, and, yeah, Firefox. However, most of the time, things don't work the way they do in the movies
Fair Play...Or Not
Commentary  |  10/26/2006  | 
IT Salaries Are On The Way Up
Commentary  |  10/26/2006  | 
A Merit Badge For Docile Consumerism?
Commentary  |  10/26/2006  | 
The news story about the Los Angeles Area Boy Scouts' cooperation with the Motion Picture Association of America to create a merit badge for respecting copyrights points up just how badly the entertainment industry needs new ideas. Handing out merit badges for docile consumerism isn't going to cut it if the music and movie businesses are going to have a future in the Internet Age.
Google Warns Not To 'Google' On Yahoo
Commentary  |  10/25/2006  | 
If you use "google" as a verb, GoogleTM would like to correct your grammar. GoogleTM, you see, has become so successful that its trademarked name is in danger of becoming a generic term for searching online. As a post today on the Google blog points out, zipper, baby oil, brassiere, trampoline, thermos, cellophane, escalator, elevator, and dry
Maltreated H-1B Visa Holders: Fact Or Fiction?
Commentary  |  10/25/2006  | 
A few IT body shops seem to be coercing their H-1B visa-holding employees from quitting with the threat of legal action.
Readers' Best Photos
Commentary  |  10/25/2006  | 
A few weeks back, I invited readers to submit photos of places and activities they've experienced that are squarely outside the realm of their IT careers.
Jonny Can Play Fair
Commentary  |  10/25/2006  | 
DVD Jon has struck again. The notorious hacker who's been helping people copy stuff that big companies don't want them to has found a way to unlock the code that blocks iPod users from playing songs from music download stores other than iTunes. Among other critics, blogger Cory Doctorow recently railed on this site against Appl
Oracle, An Expanding Universe
Commentary  |  10/24/2006  | 
Oracle has added 482 features to the beta 11g version of its database. It's a reflection of that enduring Oracle philosophy that its database is the center of the universe and everything revolves around it.
No SP3 For XP? Ehnhnhnhnh. Thank You For Playing, Microsoft
Commentary  |  10/24/2006  | 
Since Microsoft last released a roll-up of fixes for Windows XP Service Pack 2 in 2004, the pace of changes to the operating system has accelerated beyond any expectation. Windows Update on the XP machine closest to where I'm sitting shows 101 updates have been applied since it went into service on July 15, 2005. That's a huge number.
U.S. Tech Workers Share Their Outsourcing Pain
Commentary  |  10/24/2006  | 
Last week, I invited readers of this blog to e-mail me with accounts of how they've personally been affected by outsourcing. I received many responses (several of them of unprintable). Below are excerpts from a few, with names withheld. Regardless of where you stand on the outsourcing issue, it's undeniably causing pain on an individual level.
Why People Don't Collaborate
Commentary  |  10/24/2006  | 
A Better Idea In The Spamhaus Case
Commentary  |  10/22/2006  | 
Last week I wrote in this space that "The Spamhaus-e360Insight Case Isn't Just One Bad Decision, It's Several." The worst of them all was the plaintiff's proposal that the judge order ICANN to pull Spamhaus.org's domain name, which promised to precipitate what some were calling a "constit
From Our Blog
Commentary  |  10/20/2006  | 
Down To Business: It's Your Money; Keep A Close Eye On It
Commentary  |  10/20/2006  | 
Politicians and other public figures are more than happy to spend your tax dollars on tech projects and programs that ostensibly serve the general good. But beware whose good they're really serving.
Community Feedback
Commentary  |  10/20/2006  | 
IT Confidential: RFID: Europeans Want Privacy, Americans Want Results
Commentary  |  10/20/2006  | 
What would Jesse James do? Europeans express their reservations about business being able to safeguard privacy when it comes to implementing RFID, but American companies want to move ahead aggressively.
The Internet Explorer 7 Glass Is Definitely Half Empty
Commentary  |  10/20/2006  | 
The news that Microsoft has finally released a newer, perhaps less risky version of Internet Explorer should bring a song to my lips and a spring to my step. But my heart is heavy. Why? Because of the nine PCs within my reach, only two will run the newer, safer IE. The other seven run Microsoft operating systems that Microsoft has stopped supporting and won't release a version of IE7 for.
IT Jobs In Jeopardy To Enemy Within
Commentary  |  10/19/2006  | 
If you've got a well-paying IT job in one of the traditional centers of technology like Boston, New York, or San Francisco, you and your coworkers have had to withstand the increasing outsourcing of jobs to emerging nations in recent years. But it may be more likely you'll be losing your job to someone in Omaha, Neb.
Microsoft Answers Brussels
Commentary  |  10/19/2006  | 
It might be official now: The days of triumphant Windows releases are gone. Instead, Microsoft's next operating system is limping toward the starting line.
Firefox Q&A, Browsers, Ethics, And Sun
Commentary  |  10/19/2006  | 
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