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Has Apple Lost Its Security Shine?

In This Issue:
1. Editor's Note: Teapots, Application Design, And A Couple Of Our Recent Products
2. Today's Top Story
    - Has Apple Lost Its Security Shine?
    Related Story
    - A Bite Out Of Apple? Mac OS Share Goes Flat
3. Breaking News
    - General Motor's Massive IT Overhaul Takes Off
    - CIOs Worry About Speed And Agility
    - Extreme-Temperature Battery Touts Itself For The Data Center
    - Microsoft Hopes New Search Tool Draws Converts From Google
    - Former PC Industry Darling Tries For Comeback As Dell 2.0
    - E-Voting Machines Pose Election Threat, Professor Says
    - Programmable Logic Chips Stir Silicon Valley Battle
    - Deal Puts Videos And Music Legally On YouTube
    - Searching Inward: Newest Splunk Version Indexes Log Data From Multiple Servers
    - Researchers Spot AIM Bot Being Built
    - What Keeps CIOs Awake At Night? Old And New Worries, Says Survey
    - IBM Adds Problem Resolution Toolkit In Drive For Self-Healing IT Systems
    - California Bans Holding Cell Phones When Driving
    - HP Says Targeted Own Spokesman In Media Leak Probe
4. Grab Bag
    - "Hotel Minibar" Keys Open Diebold Voting Machines (Freedom to Tinker)
    - The ID Chip You Don't Want in Your Passport (The Washington Post)
    - How Dare Google Send Belgian News Sites Traffic! Court Orders Them To Stop (Techdirt)
5. In Depth: Software
    - The Transformation Of EMC
    - EMC To Buy Network Intelligence For $175 Million
    - With New Software, PDAs Can Manage Windows Servers Remotely
    - Open-Source Middleware Is Ready For Consideration
6. Voice Of Authority
    - IT Confidential: Last DOS Standing
7. White Papers
    - A Comprehensive Approach to Dynamic Application Delivery
8. Get More Out Of InformationWeek
9. Manage Your Newsletter Subscription

Quote of the day:
"A computer once beat me at chess, but it was no match for me at kickboxing. -- Emo Philips


1. Editor's Note: Teapots, Application Design, And A Couple Of Our Recent Products

This note starts out about a million miles away from information technology, but it all comes out in the end, so stay with me on this, OK? It's about some basic principles of designing tools, and how those principles apply to teapots as well as to IT.

I work from home and often drink tea in the morning to get the engine started. A couple of years ago, I became fond of YiXing teapots. They're good-looking creations, cunningly decorated. They don't have to be washed—you just rinse them out with hot water and make a fresh pot. And they've got intriguing history and lore behind them; the making of them dates back about 1,000 years.

I commented on my purchase on an online community, and a friend posted a link to this essay by design guru Don Norman. Norman, like me, is a tea drinker, and he opens with photographs, and descriptions of three teapots in his collection, including the transparent "Nanna teapot" by designer Michael Graves, which Norman describes as "so charming I couldn't resist it"; and the Ronnenfeldt tilting teapot, which has a built-in shelf on which you lay the tea leaves.

Norman writes that in the morning, he makes his tea using a brewing ball, but, "when I'm entertaining guests or have time to spare, I brew my tea in the Nanna teapot for its charm or in the tilting pot for its cleverness. Design is important to me, but which design I choose depends on the occasion, the context, and above all, my mood....

Norman's not just talking about teapots here. He's talking about all tools. And that's why this note isn't just about tea, but also about information technology: Because you, our readers, are IT managers, and IT managers are tool-builders. You build tools for users inside the company, for partners, and—especially in the case of online retail applications—for customers.

The tools that IT builds are, unfortunately, sometimes frustrating to use, and that's wrong. Workers are more productive when tools are enjoyable and easy to use; they'll look for excuses to avoid using tools that are difficult to use and frustrating. And forget about deploying customer-facing tools that are frustrating to use—customers will simply avoid using those tools, even if it means going to the competition.

For almost a year now, I've been involved in building a tool for our readers. The tool, MyInformationWeek delivers a customized, personalized view of InformationWeek articles for each unique visitor. It learns from the preferences you tell it, and it also lets you rate stories on the fly, and learns from the ratings you give each article. The goal is to deliver articles that you want to read, and not deliver stuff you're not interested in.

We're enjoying working on revising the site so that it's both useful and enjoyable for you to use. New users should go here first to find out about it and sign up, returning users who already have accounts can go for return visits here.

And if you're having trouble using MyInformationWeek (or another one of our recent new products, InformationWeek Download), leave a message on the InformationWeek Weblog and let us know. And you'll find an extended version of this note at the preceding link.

Oh, by the way: today is Talk Like A Pirate Day. It was a silly holiday to begin with, and the joke is worn out from years of over-use, so we're not even going to mention it here. Arr.

Mitch Wagner
mwagner@cmp.com
www.informationweek.com


2. Today's Top Story

Has Apple Lost Its Security Shine?
With the latest large sets of security patches and an alleged wireless driver vulnerability, Mac OS X no longer seems invincible. Our expert delves into the real threats in the Apple world and outlines simple steps you can take to protect yourself.

Related Story:

A Bite Out Of Apple? Mac OS Share Goes Flat
Net Applications says the fact that Mac usage was growing until this year may be an indication of larger problems for Apple.


3. Breaking News

General Motor's Massive IT Overhaul Takes Off
Try training 8,000 people on new processes within just a few months. That's just the beginning of an effort to create one global IT services organization at GM.

CIOs Worry About Speed And Agility
New issues join the longstanding ones like business alignment, staffing, and security, according to a SIM survey of CIOs.

Extreme-Temperature Battery Touts Itself For The Data Center
Altair's new batteries are designed to endure tens of thousands of full-charge cycles, compared with less than 700 for more conventional lead-acid batteries.

Microsoft Hopes New Search Tool Draws Converts From Google
Microsoft may finally believe its search engine and search advertising platform have reached the point of being technically competitive with Google and Yahoo. But technology will only get Microsoft so far.

Former PC Industry Darling Tries For Comeback As Dell 2.0
Founder and Chairman Michael Dell acknowledged that the company's direct sales model is no longer enough.

E-Voting Machines Pose Election Threat, Professor Says
A Princeton professor says computer viruses can easily be installed in an e-voting machine to change vote totals.

Programmable Logic Chips Stir Silicon Valley Battle
Two semiconductor companies, though largely unheard of, are in the midst of their own Silicon Valley battle—Xilinx and Altera. The winner looks to gain dominance in programmable logic.

Deal Puts Videos And Music Legally On YouTube
The deal allows millions of people who upload their homemade videos to YouTube to license an array of Warner Music's songs.

Searching Inward: Newest Splunk Version Indexes Log Data From Multiple Servers
Other improvements include command-line APIs and needing 40% less storage capacity for indexing and storing original log and IT data.

Researchers Spot AIM Bot Being Built
FaceTime researchers say users who click on the link in the bogus AIM message and launch the ensuing file may become part of an IRC-controlled botnet.

What Keeps CIOs Awake At Night? Old And New Worries, Says Survey
Aligning IT and business and attracting and retaining IT talent are among the top CIO concerns, according to the Society for Information Management.

IBM Adds Problem Resolution Toolkit In Drive For Self-Healing IT Systems
The toolkit helps developers build a database of common problems and their solutions.

California Bans Holding Cell Phones When Driving
Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger urged citizens of his state not to wait until the law takes effect in July 2008 to put down their phones while driving.

HP Says Targeted Own Spokesman In Media Leak Probe
HP spokesman Michael Moeller said Patricia Dunn, the company's departing chairman, and chief executive Mark Hurd, who is due to replace Dunn in January, have both apologized to him about the matter.

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4. Grab Bag

Hotel Minibar Keys Open Diebold Voting Machines (Freedom to Tinker)
Like other computer scientists who have studied Diebold voting machines, we were surprised at the apparent carelessness of Diebold's security design. It can be hard to convey this to nonexperts, because the examples are technical. Here is an example that anybody, expert or not, can appreciate: The access panel door on a Diebold AccuVote-TS voting machine—the door that protects the memory card that stores the votes, and is the main barrier to the injection of a virus—can be opened with a standard key that is widely available on the Internet.

The ID Chip You Don't Want in Your Passport (The Washington Post)
If you have a passport, now is the time to renew it—even if it's not set to expire anytime soon. If you don't have a passport and think you might need one, now is the time to get it. In many countries, including the United States, passports will soon be equipped with RFID chips. And you don't want one of these chips in your passport.

How Dare Google Send Belgian News Sites Traffic! Court Orders Them To Stop (Techdirt)
The issue of the legality of "deep linking" has gone on for many years—and while we had hoped that, by now, people would realize why there should be nothing wrong with linking to any other page on the Internet, it seems that's not the case. For some reason, the idea that having someone link to your news article is a good thing has been particularly difficult for certain Europeans to grasp.


5. In Depth

Microsoft Warns August Patch Corrupts Data
Microsoft requires users who want the patch to call the company. It is not available to the general public.

The Transformation Of EMC
Best known as a storage hardware vendor, EMC has spent more than $7 billion to become more of a software and services company. Is the strategy working?

EMC To Buy Network Intelligence For $175 Million
The acquisition comes just as EMC wraps up its $2.1 billion purchase of RSA Security.

With New Software, PDAs Can Manage Windows Servers Remotely
The Avocent software runs on a BlackBerry or any Windows Mobile 5-based device. Two packages provide different levels of administration features and functions.

Open-Source Middleware Is Ready For Consideration
Businesses usually opt for commercial versions of middleware, but they may be missing out on open source options that offer speed, cost savings, and reliability.


6. Voice Of Authority

IT Confidential: Last DOS Standing
John Soat says: Microsoft products don't get old, they get better—don't they? All eyes these days may be focused on Microsoft's next generation of Windows, Vista, but there are a multitude of older Windows versions still running out there.


7. White Papers

A Comprehensive Approach To Dynamic Application Delivery
This white paper explores the challenges of providing a high-performance application delivery infrastructure, identifying the root causes of performance and availability bottlenecks in Web applications, and assessing the potential solutions. We also present Akamai's Web Application Accelerator service within this context.


8. Get More Out Of InformationWeek

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