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IT Confidential

Last week, Computer Associates made public a lawsuit it filed two weeks ago against Quest Software, an Irvine, Calif., vendor of application-management software. CA is accusing Quest of copyright infringement and trade-secret misappropriation. Specifically, CA alleges four employees of Platinum Technology stole the source code to the company's Enterprise Database Administration software, which CA acquired when it bought Platinum in 1999. Instead of joining CA, the four went to work for Quest and used the source code "to develop one or more products within Quest's 'Quest Central' suite of database administration software products," the lawsuit alleges. A Quest spokeswoman had no comment other than to say the company's legal department is reviewing the lawsuit.

EMC has a new chief technology officer. Mark Lewis left his job as head of storage marketing at Hewlett-Packard to become CTO and executive VP of new ventures for the storage market leader. He replaces Jim Rothie, who's retiring. Lewis is well-known in the storage industry, having headed storage at Compaq until its merger with HP. Lewis will report to EMC president and CEO Joe Tucci. As the company transitions from a hardware vendor to a software and services company, Tucci is rebuilding EMC's management team. Last week, he tapped IT veteran David Goulden as executive VP of global marketing and business development.

Amid controversy over the FBI's effective use of IT-or lack thereof-director Robert Mueller said last week that Darwin John is joining the bureau as its new CIO, replacing Bob Dies, who recently left. John is acknowledged as one of the most effective and innovative IT leaders. Since 1990, he's been managing director of information and communication systems for the Church Of Jesus Christ Of Latter Day Saints, where he was instrumental in the Mormons' ambitious genealogical database project. In a statement, Mueller said John brings a "demonstrated capability to achieve broad-based results in an area critical to the FBI's success, particularly at a time when the bureau is modernizing its information technologies."

John MacIlwaine has joined EnvestnetPMC, a Chicago provider of investment services and technology for financial-services firms, as its new chief technology officer. MacIlwaine, 33, was CTO at Morgan Stanley Dean Witter Online for several years, then left to head technology at now-defunct dot-com myHomeKey.com, an online provider of home services. He'll focus on "strategic development and expansion of EnvestnetPMC's technology platform," according to a spokesperson.

When its acquisition by eBay is complete, Internet-payment service provider PayPal has agreed to drop online gambling sites as customers. Online gambling represents about 8% of PayPal's total payment volume, according to a spokesman. Losing PayPal is a blow to the online gambling industry, as several prominent credit-card providers have also dropped such firms as customers. Online gambling is illegal in the United States by most definitions of the law, and New York attorney general Eliot Spitzer is conducting an investigation into the industry. As part of that investigation, PayPal confirmed last week that it's received a subpoena from Spitzer's office for information about the online gambling market.

Gateway, the bovine-inspired PC maker, has started offering free half-day courses on how to download music off the Internet. Founder and chairman Ted Waitt has already earned the enmity of the entertainment industry by promoting the capability of his company's PCs to download digital music and create CDs. A locator on Gateway's site directs you to the nearest Gateway store offering the course, and an online flyer features sessions such as "Discovering Digital Music On the Internet," and "Doing More With Your Music." In small print: "Respect musicians-Respect their copyrights."

Isn't that called trying to put out a fire with gasoline? Not that I don't admire the chutzpah. I'm all for tackling problems head on. Ask my wife-just don't mention the basement floor. Send home-improvement tips, or an industry tip, to jsoat@cmp.com or phone 516-562-5326. If you want to talk about software copyright, the government's use of technology, or online gambling, meet me at InformationWeek's Listening Post: informationweek.com/forum/johnsoat.


To discuss this column with other readers, please visit John Soat's forum on the Listening Post.

To find out more about John Soat, please visit his page on the Listening Post.

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