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Keep An Eye On The Watchdogs: Readers Reply

In This Issue:
1. Editor's Note: Tech Toys For The Holidays
2. Today's Top Story
    - Keep An Eye On The Watchdogs: Readers Reply
3. Breaking News
    - Microsoft Wraps Up SharePoint Services 3.0
    - IBM Enhances Tool To Measure Data Center Power Consumption
    - Symbian Surges Smartphone OS Shipments Beyond 100 Million
    - IBM 'Declares War' On HP In Blade Server Market
    - Exploits Surface For Critical Microsoft Bug
    - Spend More, Get More In Tech R&D? Not Always, According To Innovation Study
    - WinZip 11 Launches; Bug Found In Version 10
    - Microsoft Keeps Software Update Services Alive Until July
    - Google Adds Mac Support To Ajax Toolkit
    - Dell Delays Earnings Report, SEC To Begin Investigation
    - Microsoft-Sprint Mobile Search Alliance Aims To Bring In Ad Dollars
    - Study Shows 95% Of IT Pros Happy With Their Jobs
4. Grab Bag
    - So Much Music, So Few Choices
    - Game Definitely Not Over
    - Stores Brace For Hordes Of Gamers
5. In Depth:
    - First Look: Microsoft Zune
    - Review: Two Packages Put Windows On The Mac Pro
    - Review: Apple's New Mac Pro Blows Away The Competition
    - Sony PlayStation 3 Is A Geek's Dream
6. Voice Of Authority
    - Why Open Source Java Is Such A Big Deal
7. White Papers
    - Guide For Selecting An Enterprise Network Management Solution
8. Get More Out Of InformationWeek
9. Manage Your Newsletter Subscription


1. Editor's Note: Tech Toys For The Holidays

When was it that you were hit with your first Christmas commercial this year? For me, it was sometime right after Halloween, when I was watching a local TV station and was suddenly confronted with that overweight guy in a red suit who was urging me to think about what I wanted to get my friends this year.

My first instinct was to growl that I would simply ship them all the Halloween candy I had left over—but then I started thinking. While I'm not a huge holiday gift-giver, I do have a number of friends and relations who get periodical gifts for birthdays and other occasions, and many of them are highly enthusiastic about tech toys. You know the type: Their favorite pastime away from the computer is to wander around Best Buy or the local tech junk shop and examine the merchandise with an eye toward its usefulness, its feature set, and its coolness factor (but hardly a glance toward the price tag).

They are the folks who are figuring out if they want to move away from the iPod and try out Microsoft's new Zune; who are thinking strongly about moving toward the new Mac Pro (as long as they can still run their favorite Windows apps), and who want to get HDTV not only to watch the latest adventure flick but so they can get NASA's live space footage in glorious high definition.

You know, I'm not sure why I'm talking about these people in the third person, since I strongly suspect I'm one of them as well. In fact, if you count yourself in this category, I'd like to ask you a favor. We're putting together a Gift Guide to exhibit what we think will be the most exciting tech gadgets for this holiday season. If you've seen something—or heard rumors about something—that you would love to find wrapped and with your name on it, drop me a line at my blog post and let me know what it is.

I can't promise you that the overweight guy will deliver it, but at least you might be able to point at the Web site and say, casually, "You see that? Boy, that looks really cool. I wonder if somebody might ... nah ... still, it would be nice if ...


Barbara Krasnoff
bkrasnoff@cmp.com
www.informationweek.com


2. Today's Top Story

Keep An Eye On The Watchdogs: Readers Reply
Readers weigh in on Rob Preston's assertions that many 'watchdog' groups have their own not-very-thinly-veiled political agendas.


3. Breaking News

Microsoft Wraps Up SharePoint Services 3.0
Windows SharePoint Services is largely a plug-and-play and template-based tool for creating simple portals and intranets.

IBM Enhances Tool To Measure Data Center Power Consumption
IBM's updated PowerExecutive technology monitors, displays, and now caps how much power each blade is using.

Symbian Surges Smartphone OS Shipments Beyond 100 Million
Symbian reported Thursday that shipments of smartphones using its eponymous operating system have topped the 100 million mark, with Symbian-equipped handsets in the hands of customers of more than 250 network operators worldwide.

IBM 'Declares War' On HP In Blade Server Market
IBM says its BladeCenter system uses up to 30% less energy than HP's BladeSystem. Analysts were surprised by IBM's direct assault on its main rival.

Exploits Surface For Critical Microsoft Bug
Both proof-of-concept exploit code and a public exploit have popped up for the bug fixed in MS06-070, a security update that patched Windows 2000's and Windows XP's Workstation Service.

Spend More, Get More In Tech R&D? Not Always, According To Innovation Study
Booz Allen Hamilton examined research and development at 1,000 global companies for six months and found less than one-tenth were getting full value from money spent.

WinZip 11 Launches; Bug Found In Version 10
The update adds thumbnail images users can browse before extracting digital photos and support for the popular RAR file format.

Microsoft Keeps Software Update Services Alive Until July
SUS was to be dropped on Dec. 6, about a week before next month's regularly scheduled security releases. Now, SUS will be kept on life support until July 10.

Google Adds Mac Support To Ajax Toolkit
The toolkit compiles Java code into JavaScript, necessary for building Ajax applications. It also helps resolve differences between Microsoft Internet Explorer, Apple Safari, and Firefox.

Dell Delays Earnings Report, SEC To Begin Investigation
Dell, along with rival Hewlett-Packard, had been expected to announce its third-quarter earnings Thursday, but Dell now says it will release its numbers by the end of the month.

Microsoft-Sprint Mobile Search Alliance Aims To Bring In Ad Dollars
In addition to tapping into Microsoft's rich mapping and directions offerings, users will be able to access Sprint portals that offer music downloading, ring tones, games, and screen savers.

Study Shows 95% Of IT Pros Happy With Their Jobs
IT workers are satisfied enough with their jobs to recommend IT as a career to others, according to a study by an online recruiting service.

All Our Latest News

----- The latest research, polls, and tools -----

Ready, Set, Go?
Microsoft and its customers are gearing up for the release of Vista. Will the new release provide business technology professionals with the security and functionality they've been hoping for? Learn how nearly 700 business technology professionals answered these questions and more in InformationWeek Research's report Windows Vista: Ready, Set, Go?

A Week's Worth Of Dailies—All In One Place
Have you missed an issue or two of the InformationWeek Daily? Or want to check out some recent quotes of the day? Check out our Daily newsletter archive page and get caught up quickly.

-----------------------------------------


4. Grab Bag

So Much Music, So Few Choices (NY Times)
Restrictive hardware and convoluted rights management crimp consumer choices.

Game Definitely Not Over (BusinessWeek)
On the eve of the launch of PS3 and Wii, stakes in the console tussle amid Sony, Nintendo, and Microsoft have never been higher.

Stores Brace For Hordes Of Gamers (CNN.com)
Retailers expect to be overwhelmed by demand during the impending video game console launches but say they're working to keep the spirit festive while trying to prevent chaos and confusion.


5. In Depth: Personal Tech

First Look: Microsoft Zune
If you find a certain air of geeky awkwardness appealing, then you might like this first try at a media player from a company not famous for its hardware design.

Review: Two Packages Put Windows On The Mac Pro
Mac OS X and Microsoft Windows can now live nicely together without fighting—if you've got either Boot Camp or Parallels Desktop for Mac. Here's how well they work.

Review: Apple's New Mac Pro Blows Away The Competition
Apple's latest desktop proves itself a winner in design, performance, and flexibility.

Sony PlayStation 3 Is A Geek's Dream
Among the most advanced features is an IBM-built central processing unit, called the Cell Broadband Engine, that provides the equivalent computing power of eight individual microprocessors.


6. Voice Of Authority

Why Open Source Java Is Such A Big Deal
This week's announcement by Sun Microsystems that it is, in fact, releasing the Java Software Development Kit and JVM, the Java Compiler, and the just-in-time byte-code compiler known as HotSpot is a Really Big Deal.


7. White Papers

Guide For Selecting An Enterprise Network Management Solution
To help you understand the value of implementing a network management solution for your business, Network General has outlined the latest in enterprise network management strategies and high-performance tools for global organizations.


8. Get More Out Of InformationWeek

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