In This Issue:
1. Editor's Note: IT Analysts Under The Microscope
2. Today's Top Story: Kama Sutra Worm
- Microsoft Won't Issue Advance Kama Sutra Fix
- Kama Sutra Worm Hits India, Peru Hardest
3. Breaking News
- Firefox Slides In U.S., IE Gains Ground
- Microsoft Unveils IE 7 Public Beta
- Nullsoft Fixes Critical Winamp Bug
- Mass. Names New CIO, Hardens OpenDocuments Policy
- Visto Sues Good Technology Over Mobile E-Mail
- ABC News, AOL Offer 'People's State Of The Union'
- Itanium Machines Face Challenges
- Philadelphia, EarthLink Agree On Citywide Wi-Fi
- IBM Targets SMBs With i5 Servers, Software
- Sprint Nextel Sues Firm For Obtaining, Selling Customer Data
- EBay Faces Groundbreaking Case In Tiffany Counterfeit Suit
4. Grab Bag: Skype Ring Tones
5. In Depth: Security Vulnerabilities
6. Voice Of Authority: Tech-Driven Changes
7. White Papers: Customer Data Management
8. Get More Out Of InformationWeek
9. Manage Your Newsletter Subscription
Quote of the day:
"For every credibility gap there is a gullibility gap." -- Richard Cobden, English politician (1804-1865)
1. Editor's Note: IT Analysts Under The Microscope
How much can customers of the big IT research firms trust what
they read and hear? After all, analysts sometimes write reports
that have been funded by technology companies, and they appear in
Webcasts and at trade shows for fees. We've set out to answer the
credibility question in a story we'll be publishing in the Feb. 6
issue of InformationWeek. We interviewed dozens of IT
vendors, users, and executives at the top analyst firms. The
resulting brushstrokes from each conversation helped paint a
picture of an analyst industry that's tapped into an almost
desperate need that businesses have to stay on top of emerging
technology and a community of IT vendors even more desperate to
make the sale.
Somewhere along the line, IT vendors and their customers both
became beholden to the big analyst firms, to the extent that they
consume large quantities of Gartner Magic Quadrant reports and
IDC market projections, even if they sometimes question the
reliability of these reports. Regardless of whether Gartner
actually tests the products it places in its Magic Quadrant
reports, IT executives want to know who's on the list and how
they stack up. For most vendors, a positive placement in a Magic
Quadrant or a Forrester Wave report means product sales, whereas
exile to "challenger" or "niche player" status could mean a trip
back to the drawing board.
The reluctance that vendors and end users have in publicly
questioning analyst firms tells us all we need to know more about
the clout that these firms have. Even IT vendors that no longer
subscribe to analyst services are hesitant to criticize these
firms. This is because those vendors may someday find themselves
branching out into new markets, a particularly vulnerable time
when support or lack thereof from the analyst community could
make or break a career or a company.
What's your view on the objectivity of the work put out by IT
research firms? Does it pass muster? Please weigh in at my blog entry.
Firefox Slides In U.S., IE Gains Ground
Bucking other reports that Internet Explorer is continuing its
downward trend, a Dutch metric company says IE gained market
share in the last two months, while Firefox slid.
Microsoft Unveils IE 7 Public Beta
Microsoft on Tuesday released the first generally available beta
for Internet Explorer 7, as well as Windows RSS Platform, a
for-developers set of APIs for creating RSS-enabled applications.
Nullsoft Fixes Critical Winamp Bug
Nullsoft late Monday fixed a critical flaw in its flagship Winamp
music player that could have allowed attackers to grab control of PCs.
Mass. Names New CIO, Hardens OpenDocuments Policy
The Bay State has named Louis Gutierrez to fill the position of
CIO in the Information Technology Division and, at the same time,
reiterated its support for a previously announced plan to
implement the OpenDocument format in state agencies in January.
Madonna Meets Skype (MSNBC)
It's a move that makes sense on the surface: Warner Music Group
is teaming up with eBay's Skype to sell original music ring tones
to users of the popular online chatting service. Then the obvious
hits you: Folks who may be too cheap to pay for conventional
phone service are also likely to be too cheap to pay for high-end
wireless phones with digital download capability.
New From InformationWeek: Get Your News In A Flash--Literally
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Linux Vulnerabilities Spur Enterprise Warning
Although most business customers don't officially use "raw" Linux
products and so aren't in imminent danger, security experts say
the situation makes it worth double-checking your software
version levels and making sure the techies aren't bringing
unpatched Linux products onto the network.
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