In This Issue:
1. Editor's Note: Is Google Spreading Itself Too Thin?
2. Today's Top Story
- Coming From Microsoft: 'Hosted Everything'
- Opinion: Natural-Born Microsoft Killers
- Trying To Ease Linux Server Management In A Microsoft Environment
- Microsoft To Launch Online Book-Search Project
3. Breaking News
- Google Testing Possible EBay Competition
- Supreme Court Opens Prospect Of U.S. BlackBerry Ban
- IT Salaries To Rise In 2006: Report
- Dell Adds Mirroring To Desktops
- Industry Groups Seek To Stem Chinese IP Violations
- Japan's IC Makers Report Losses, Spending Cuts
- Budget Forecast Predicts 'Sharp' Military R&D Cuts
- Sun Trials RFID Asset Tracking
- VeriSign Buys Retail Solutions
- Device 'Controls' Humans Remotely
4. In Depth: Security
5. Voice Of Authority: Students & IT
6. White Papers: Network Security
7. Get More Out Of InformationWeek
8. Manage Your Newsletter Subscription
Quote of the day:
"People always say that I didn't give up my seat because I was
tired, but that isn't true. I was not tired physically, or no
more tired than I usually was at the end of a working day. I was
not old, although some people have an image of me as being old
then. I was 42. No, the only tired I was, was tired of giving
in." -- Rosa Parks, whose simple act of defiance, refusing to give
up her seat on a segregated bus 50 years ago, helped launch the
civil-rights movement. Parks died this week at age 92.
1. Editor's Note: Is Google Spreading Itself Too Thin?
Reading the recent news out of Google, I can't help thinking
about Netscape. Like Google, Netscape had a dazzling entry into
the world of business. At that time, Web browsers were still a
new thing; there were literally two dozen commonly available,
none of them with decisive market dominance. And none of them
presented any significant competition to the Netscape browser,
which was decisively smaller, faster, and lighter.
Later, Netscape launched the first superstar dot-com IPO.
We all know how that story turned out: badly. The common wisdom
is that Microsoft crushed Netscape by outmarketing it and by
illegally wielding its clout as a monopolist. That's true, but
there was another factor: Netscape lost sight of its customers
and mission. The browser became the Elvis Presley of software:
fat, slow, and bloated. Now, the company's only significant
presence is as a brand owned by America Online.
Now, let's fast-forward to the present. Like the Netscape browser
circa 1995, Google's search service is so fast and powerful that
the competition can't compete.
Like Netscape, Google leveraged its early success to branch out
into other services: In Netscape's case, that was Web servers,
E-mail, and directory services. Google branched out to provide
Gmail, Google Maps, Froogle, and, recently, Google Reader.
Like Netscape, Google is being hailed as the company that will
kill Microsoft, doing to Microsoft what Microsoft did to IBM 20
years ago. And Microsoft's critics are talking just like they did
during Netscape's prime eight or nine years ago, saying that
Microsoft is fat, bloated, doesn't understand the business models
created by new technology, and doomed.
But Netscape took on too much. Is Google doing the same? For more
on this discussion, and to add your 2 cents, go to my blog entry.
Within a year, Microsoft plans to offer versions of CRM and ERP
applications that it or its partners can host, as well as
Microsoft-hosted SharePoint implementations, according to people
familiar with the company's plans.
Related Stories: Opinion: Natural-Born Microsoft Killers
Companies like Google, eBay, and Amazon proved their mettle
surviving the dot-com crash. But the hypemongers who already have
them dancing on Microsoft's grave need to get real: Where and
when necessary, Microsoft still has both the paranoia and the
inspiration necessary to crush its rivals.
Google confirmed that it's testing a new searchable database
service, called Google Base. Google is providing few details, but
the service was online several hours and at least one alert
blogger snapped a screenshot.
Supreme Court Opens Prospect Of U.S. BlackBerry Ban
The nation's highest court has denied Research In Motion's
request to stay all lower-court decisions, which means that the
decision about whether to issue a BlackBerry ban is now up to the
U.S. District Court.
Industry Groups Seek To Stem Chinese IP Violations
The U.S. Trade representative is "deeply concerned" about
intellectual-property violations on just about all fronts and
wants some answers. China--which can use this as an "opportunity
to make its case"--is expected to respond within three months.
Sun Trials RFID Asset Tracking
The vendor is using its own products and services to maintain
more than 10,000 servers in one facility; Sun says that within an
hour it can verify any item's location and physical
characteristics, from type to age to expiration date--all without
needing a network connection.
VeriSign Buys Retail Solutions
The $24 million deal pushes VeriSign squarely into delivering
point-of-sale data, which is gathered at cash registers when
customers pay for merchandise at stores.
Device 'Controls' Humans Remotely
The Japanese-developed technology uses electricity to do the job;
potential uses include helping guide rescue workers or making
video games more realistic. Can military use be far behind?
Information Security InformationWeek's U.S. Information Security 2005 research report
documents the responses of 2,540 U.S. business-technology and
security professionals and explores threat perceptions, security
practices, and investment plans. The report also examines attack
successes and their impact on business-technology operations.
Chief Of The Year
Who's the CIO that inspires you most? What IT leader has led a
revolution at his or her company? Who deserves InformationWeek's
2005 Chief of the Year Award? Vote now by sending an E-mail to
Nominations For Blog-X Awards Begin!
You determine the nominees and you choose the winner in TechWeb's
second annual Blog-X Awards. Nominate your favorite tech blog
now, and be sure to return when it's time to vote for the winner!
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RFID Chips To Travel In U.S. Passports
U.S. passports issued after October 2006 will contain embedded
radio-frequency identification chips that carry the holder's
personal data and digital photo. Terrorism and ID theft fears
drive most consumer objections.
Eric Chabrow interviews Kristina Johnson, dean of the Pratt
School of Engineering at Duke University, about what educators
should be doing to attract talented students to engineering and
other technical careers, despite offshore outsourcing.
Securing networks and their PC end points has grown increasingly
challenging. The answer to these problems is Total Access
Protection, Check Point's strategy for defending enterprise
networks by ensuring that every PC is secure before it connects
to the network.
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5 Top Federal Initiatives For 2015As InformationWeek Government readers were busy firming up their fiscal year 2015 budgets, we asked them to rate more than 30 IT initiatives in terms of importance and current leadership focus. No surprise, among more than 30 options, security is No. 1. After that, things get less predictable.