It's Super Tuesday: Vote Early, Vote Often!
Among other things, this election could have a profound effect on the technology industry and the prospects of small and midsize businesses. It's up to you who you vote for, but please, if you live in a Super Tuesday state, please make sure to vote.
A Greener Bowl Game? Super
What else ya got? Super Bowl XLII (double extra large!) will be remembered for the stunning outcome on the field (Giants 17 - Patriots 14), not for the NFL's environmental efforts off-field.
Join Us Later Today For The Kick-Off Of The Brand-New InformationWeek Live
We're a little more than an hour away from launching our new series of events: InformationWeek Live, a real-time podcast featuring InformationWeek editors and top guests. Today's netcast is primarily a tech rehearsal, but a few of us editors will be there sharing perspective on the top headlines of the day.
nLite And vLite Can Lighten Windows, But Sometimes Too Much
Einstein supposedly said, "Everything should be made as simple as possible, but not simpler." With the release of vLite, Vista users have a chance to try their hand at achieving Einstein's ideal. My experience with the XP version, nLite, has been that it's often hard to determine what constitutes simplicity -- and when to stop simplifying.
What's Microsoft Really Buying With Yahoo?
It's a tough question, isn't it? Is Microsoft buying Yahoo because of its long-term and broadscale expertise with open source? If so, to what end? Well, I thought, maybe what they're really buying is the expertise of the Yahoo programming team, akin to what I felt was happening with Sun and MySQL, et al. Unfortunately, the theory doesn't seem to work here.
A Tale of Two Economies
The signs are familiar and worrying: a US economy that cannot seem to rebound, job losses on the rise, and consumers getting increasingly jittery. Will US companies, in a desperate bid to cut costs, intensify their push to send work offshore? Not so fast.
SaaS Trendwatching With Clickability
It seems like everything has the "as-a-service" connotation these days. Software-as-a-service, infrastructure-as-a-service, even innovation-as-a-service. Actually, the newest one I saw come out of Demo 08 was insight-as-a-service, brought to you by the friendly folks at Silobreaker.
Yahoo Users Will Be Losers If Microsoft Gets Its Way
Yahoo users should be none too happy about Microsoft's $44.6 billion hostile bid, because they're likely to come out in last place if the deal goes through. Yahoo's services are completely alien and antithetical to Microsoft culture and technology, and acquisitions are virtually always bad news for the customers and users of the company being acquired.
Windows Vista: Top 20 Stories From Year One
Windows Vista celebrated its first birthday last week. In lieu of cake and candles, I've put together a list of some of the more memorable stories from the Microsoft OS's rather bumpy first year on the market.
Google, Microsoft Trade Jabs Over Yahoo
Google issued a statement speaking out against the proposed Microsoft acquisition of Yahoo over the weekend, citing antitrust and competitive concerns. Later, Microsoft fired back, saying that a combined Microsoft/Yahoo could serve as a better, stronger Number Two in the market to Google's Number One. Nice of Microsoft to admit that Google has the superior position. But is Google quaking in it
Rating The Super Bowl Commercials
As always, the real contest at the Super Bowl was among the commercials. (Admittedly, the game, in which the Giant upset the Patriots 17 - 14, was exciting, too.) On Fox, there were some 50 ads, which went for upwards of $2.7 million for each 30-second spot. Based on the preponderance of beer ads, it must be an American truism that you can never be too rich or have too much Bud Light.
Backup MX - It's The Least You Can Do
When I ask organizations to list their mission critical applications, e-mail is always on the list. While organizations are investing in all sorts of high-availability solutions for their e-mail servers, I'm amazed at how often they skip the inexpensive steps that will insure that legit e-mail doesn't get bounced if the e-mail server is down. When your mail server, or Internet connection, is down, a backup MX, or mail exchange, server will accept mail for your domain and forward it automatically
New 'Evil Finder' Appliance Thwarts Bank Heist
Mandiant, a consulting and software company that specializes in uncovering data breaches and fraud, last week introduced Intelligent Response, an appliance for incident response and analysis. As they left the stage at last week's Demo conference, Mandiant officials said the device had just been used to "stop a bank robbery."
Super Bowl. Robo Security.
While the Department of Homeland Security says there are no specific terror threats regarding Super Bowl XLII, security is being taken seriously at the game, where the New England Patriots will face off against the New York Giants.
D'oh! -- I Should Have Made A Backup #2
In our last installment, a disgruntled employee deleted files from the computers at the small office where she worked. Her boss should have known better, but we don't expect Florida architects to be IT mavens. In episode 2, cable TV operator Charter Communications, whose chairman and largest stockholder is none other than Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen, accidentially deleted 14,000 e-mail accounts and their contents.
The Rigidity Trap Applies to PowerPoint, Dashboards Alike
Curt Monash shares my disdain for PowerPoint: not the software per se but rather the rigid communication dysstyle it encourages. Seeming solutions such as pecha-kucha pick up the pace. You "say what you need to say and then sit the hell down." On the other hand, you're still locked in that rigid PowerPoint sequence. Faster, simpler presentations aren't necessarily better presentations. The same principle applies to communicating analytical results.
Follow The New Money
VMware may be cold at the moment, but VCs are saying virtualization is still hot.
Wireless Technologies Of The Future: RFID And Navigation?
Yesterday I got the chance to attend an event in New York City, hosted by ABI Research. The firm put together a few panels on important trends in mobile and wireless, and I found RFID and navigation to be particularly interesting.
Forget Terrorists. Watch Out For Backhoes
Terrorists may represent some danger to power plants, but human carelessness is far more likely to damage critical infrastructure. Given the events of the past few days, it's hard to believe that al-Qaida would even bother plotting to take down the Internet or a power station when everyday bumbling does the job for them.
The Burden Of Expectations
Gartner's latest survey of CIOs and their priorities has good news and bad news, and they're both the same news: Expectations for IT as a business innovator are up. It reminds me of that old adage: Be careful what you wish for.
If Microsoft And Yahoo Unite, What Will Become Of Windows Mobile?
On the surface, Microsoft and Yahoo have divergent mobile businesses. Microsoft develops and licenses Windows Mobile and associated software to OEMs, which use it to create smartphones. Yahoo has Web services and content optimized for consumption on mobile phones. Is pairing Microsoft with Yahoo (MicroHoo, anyone?) the best way for both companies to create the best mobile platform and services available?
Click Fraud Continues Climb
Are you paying for clicks? Then you should be aware that last year's growth in fake clicks (that advertisers still have to pay for) set a scary 15 percent pace.
Web 2.0 Security, Microsoft, And Yahoo
People always seem to talk about how important application security is to them. But rarely do we --as consumers of technology -- have a chance to have a profound impact on the quality and security of software applications and services. But with Microsoft's pending acquisition of Yahoo, a new opportunity arises.
Microsoft/Yahoo Combo Is Bad News for Web 2.0, Open Source
Microsoft's bid for Yahoo is certain to shake up the online advertising, Web 2.0 and open-source markets... Yahoo has released tons of code via their developer programs and pushed some really innovative services aimed at Web developers... I'd expect less open source support out of them for a start... Here are some specific quotes from Microsoft's offer worth highlighting.
Lessons Learned from SocGen: Every Employee Matters
By now nearly everyone has heard about the rogue trader at SocGen, one of France's largest banks, who managed to cause the bank to lose an astonishing $7.2 billion. But as the details of the case emerge, the lessons learned from the incident apply to all businesses, even smaller ones.
Google Execs Made 20-Year Commitment To Each Other
Ah, the heady pre-IPO heydays of summer 2004. In July of that year, co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin, together with CEO Eric Schmidt, must have been feeling pretty bullish on Google's long-term future. The three agreed to work together for the next 20 years, to have and to hold, in sickness and health, good times and bad, for better or worse. Will this business marriage last?
Join Us Monday And Tuesday For The Brand-New InformationWeek Live
Join us Monday and Tuesday when we're launching a new series of events: InformationWeek Live, a real-time podcast featuring InformationWeek editors and top guests. You'll be able to listen in to a Q&A as it happens on the most important technology issues, discuss the conversation in text chat, and ask your own questions.
Microsoft Can Buy Yahoo, But They Can't Afford Yahoo
Microsoft has decided that it's time to get serious about this Internet stuff, so their bold move is to -- buy Yahoo? I don't get it. If I were a Yahoo stockholder I might play hard to get for a while, but nearly all of them will want this deal to happen because it's probably the most profitable end for them. For Microsoft, not so much.
To Sink Or Swim In Linux's Waters?
I've been running Ubuntu Linux on my notebook, a Sony VAIO TX model, for some time now. I'm impressed with how stable it's been and how a whole raft of features like action-key support (for things like dimming the display) are available directly out of the box, without having to install additional stuff that I needed to download from Sony's site. But because getting used to Linux itself can be jarring for Windows folks, I decided not to just dive in and hope I'm able to swim.
My Life On A Stick
Ok, so I have come to the realization that my memory isn’t quite what it used to be. My wife came to this realization a decade ago, but that is a topic for another day and another blog for that matter. I used to have an uncanny knack for storage and retrieval of both professional and personal data using just my brain.