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Google's Slip-pery Slope

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In This Issue:
1. Editor's Note: Google's Slip-pery Slope
2. Today's Top Story: Intel Directions
    - Intel 'Core' Focuses On Power Consumption As It Aims To Overtake AMD
    - Intel Tips New, Revamped Microarchitecture
3. Breaking News
    - Spam Rates Rebound
    - Firefox Whips Internet Explorer In Vulnerability Tally
    - New IM Worms Delete Files, Hijack PCs
    - Microsoft's Fingerprint Reader Hacked
    - Google Lets Slip Talk Of Online Storage Service
    - Cisco Invests In Converged IT And Video Surveillance Security
    - Sun To Add Blade Servers To Galaxy Line
    - IBM Updates Data Warehouse Line
    - HP Sued Over Ex-CEO Fiorina's $42 Million Severance Payout
    - Cingular Wireless Launches Video Service
    - Yahoo Expands API For Developers
    - Blinkx Brings Tiny Search Tools To Windows Apps
    - Service To Remotely Wipe Data From Lost Laptops
4. Grab Bag: Smart Music Phone, AIM Opens Up
    - Samsung Unveils 8 Gbyte Smart Music Phone (TechNewsWorld)
    - AIM Now (Mostly) Open To Developers (Slashdot)
5. In Depth: RFID
    - RFID-Embedded Police Badges Debut In August
    - Bill Pushes RFID To Curb Drug Counterfeiting
    - Podcast: RFID Is The Newest Four-Letter Word
6. Voice Of Authority: The Altamont Of The Internet Culture?
    - IT Confidential: (What's So Funny 'Bout) Peace, Love, And Software
7. White Papers: Web App Performance
8. Get More Out Of InformationWeek
9. Manage Your Newsletter Subscription

Quote of the day:
"The brain is a wonderful organ. It starts working the moment you get up in the morning, and does not stop until you get into the office." -- Robert Frost


1. Editor's Note: Google's Slip-pery Slope

Google in many ways has positioned itself as the industry's anti-Microsoft. Since its inception, it hasn't been given to preannouncing products or features years in advance, then watching as the starstruck masses hung on every move related to those (oft-delayed) products. Its corporate credo of "Don't Be Evil" comes off as the antithesis to the evil empire in Redmond (though recent events in China raise questions on how closely Google is hewing to its self-imposed mandate).

In the recent push to be all things to all users and gain massive scale, Google may be relaxing some of these principles.

Yesterday it was reported that the company had mistakenly released online documents about a potential online storage service referred to as GDrive. "With infinite storage, we can house all user files, including emails, web history, pictures, bookmarks, etc and make it accessible from anywhere (any device, any platform, etc.)," said the notes from a presentation that was removed from the company Web site after the usual pack of bloggers circulated them.

A Microsoft-like explanation was offered by a Google spokeswoman who declined to comment on any specific service, but confirmed that a presentation containing the notes had been mistakenly released on the Web, adding "We have nothing to announce at this time."

In reality, the announcement--or, more likely, trial balloon--has already been launched. It was strikingly similar to a "slip" in February, when Microsoft mistakenly posted a Web page listing a variety of Vista versions, then later explained: "This page has since been removed as it was posted prematurely and was for testing purposes only."

These incidents seem less a case of mistaken Web posting and more an orchestrated effort to gauge user and customer feedback. In Google's case, perhaps it wanted to find out if GDrive--and the specter of the company having access to more of individuals' data--would create anything like the privacy debate that accompanied the recent Google Desktop announcement.

For years, Microsoft has gotten loads of mileage and visibility from these types of tactics. But Google was supposed to be different. Perhaps it's just poor public relations and marketing management--following closely on the CFO's disastrous comments about an expected slowdown in the company's growth rate--or perhaps Google is finding that to compete against the likes of Microsoft, it must adopt some of the business practices it has found so distasteful in the past.

What's your view? Was this indeed a slip, or was Google trying to weigh public interest and reaction to this potential service? You can weigh in at my blog entry.

Separately, I read with interest this item from The Wall Street Journal [subscription required] on how Wal-Mart is enlisting bloggers to combat negative publicity, giving these Internet scribes even greater stature. It seems one more step in the elimination of distinctions--at least from a perception standpoint--between traditional journalism with its built-in checks and balances and the free-form world of blogging. What's your view? Should bloggers be viewed as doing the same work as news reporters, or are the two clearly separate activities that should be viewed--and trusted--on different levels? Take our poll.

Tom Smith
tsmith@cmp.com
www.informationweek.com


2. Today's Top Story: Intel

Intel 'Core' Focuses On Power Consumption As It Aims To Overtake AMD
Intel says a new measure of power use--energy per instruction--is the "new Holy Grail" in computing.

Related Story:

Intel Tips New, Revamped Microarchitecture
Intel moves to renew its x86-based chip line by disclosing details of its long-awaited microarchitecture.


3. Breaking News

Spam Rates Rebound
After several months of slipping spam rates, junk mail rebounded during February, message-filtering company Postini said Tuesday.

Firefox Whips Internet Explorer In Vulnerability Tally
Symantec changes the way it tallies potential security gaps in browsers and concludes that Mozilla Firefox has fewer vulnerabilities.

New IM Worms Delete Files, Hijack PCs
Two new worms spreading on Microsoft's and America Online's instant messaging networks delete files and leave systems open to hijacking.

Microsoft's Fingerprint Reader Hacked
But the biometric device wasn't designed to provide massive security. Even the company calls it a tool of "convenience."

Google Lets Slip Talk Of Online Storage Service
A presentation, now off Google's site, acknowledged that one potential roadblock could be bandwidth constraints among users with slower Internet connections.

Cisco Invests In Converged IT And Video Surveillance Security
Cisco's SyPixx Networks acquisition will provide the networking vendor with technology for integrating surveillance video into an IP-based network.

Sun To Add Blade Servers To Galaxy Line
The new blade server will let Sun re-enter a market that's currently dominated by Dell, Egenera, Hewlett-Packard, and IBM.

IBM Updates Data Warehouse Line
Vendor also expands relationship with Cognos to strengthen its business intelligence hand.

HP Sued Over Ex-CEO Fiorina's $42 Million Severance Payout
The suit alleges that Fiorina's payout exceeded 2.99 times the sum of her base salary plus target bonuses, and that company policy requires shareholder approval for a payment that large.

Cingular Wireless Launches Video Service
Cingular Wireless on Tuesday launched a video service that offers clips from the Cartoon Network, Fox TV, HBO, and other entertainment providers, as well as news, weather, and sports.

Yahoo Expands API For Developers
Yahoo is giving developers tools to build applications that interact with Yahoo Photos, Calendar, MyWeb, and Shopping.

Blinkx Brings Tiny Search Tools To Windows Apps
The software adds buttons to a variety of applications, such as E-mail clients, Web browsers, and word processors. When clicked, the buttons display search results based on the contents of the document being viewed.

Service To Remotely Wipe Data From Lost Laptops
Pre-installed software will automatically locate and alert the machine to delete sensitive data the next time the laptop connects to Everdream's desktop management hosting service through the Internet.

All our latest news:

Watch More News:

In the current episode:

John Soat With 'Microsoft Clarified'
Microsoft clarifies its position on its search business and denies the inclusion of its "back door" in the Vista OS.

Bruce Boardman With 'VoIP Jitters'
AppCritical from Apparent Networks improves the quality of VoIP calls and eliminates those jitters you might hear during your conversation.

Eric Chabrow With 'The Networking Guy'
Jay Allen's CXO helps connect CIOs and CTOs across the country.


4. Grab Bag: News You Need From The Web

Samsung Unveils 8 Gbyte Smart Music Phone (TechNewsWorld)
Samsung is the first to adopt a hard disk drive into mobile phones and has launched three models equipped with a hard disk drive, including a 1.5 Gbyte HDD-embedded phone, a 3 Gbyte HDD-embedded phone, and a 3 Gbyte HDD music smart phone.

AIM Now (Mostly) Open To Developers (Slashdot)
Open AIM will empower you, as the developer, to write custom clients and plug-ins, AOL says.


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5. In Depth: RFID

RFID-Embedded Police Badges Debut In August
There's another crime-fighting weapon being added to law enforcement's arsenal, and it's not what you'd expect. Along with handcuffs, guns, and nightsticks, cops' uniforms will soon include badges with RFID chips.

Bill Pushes RFID To Curb Drug Counterfeiting
The bill is designed to secure drug distribution through the supply chain from manufacturers to patients.

Podcast: RFID Is The Newest Four-Letter Word
Have you heard the latest buzz on the newest four-letter word, RFID, also known as radio frequency identification technology?


6. Voice Of Authority

IT Confidential: (What's So Funny 'Bout) Peace, Love, And Software
John Soat explains why last week's Google warning to investors that its growth was slowing may be the Altamont of the Internet culture, which, he notes, would be, like, a major bummer, man.


7. White Papers: Web App Performance

Improving Web Application Performance To Lower Costs And Increase ROI
This paper outlines the challenges of comprehensively monitoring, managing, and improving end-to-end Web application performance and the benefits of and best practices for doing so.


8. Get More Out Of InformationWeek

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