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Net Neutrality Bill Sparks Debate

In This Issue:
1. Editor's Note: Net Neutrality Bill Sparks Debate
2. Today's Top Story
    - Live From The Show Floor
    - Related Story:
    - InformationWeek Bloggers Bring You The Latest From CES 2007
3. Breaking News
    - Computer Researchers Work On Auto Safety
    - Indian Outsourcer Infosys Posts Big Third-Quarter Gains
    - John Hancock Puts Its John Hancock On CSC Contract Extension
    - iDefense Posts $12,000 Bounty On Vista, IE 7 Bugs
    - Mozilla Tweaks Firefox 3.0 Feature Set
    - MySpace Launches French Site
    - Microsoft Enlists SGI In Supercomputing Software Push
    - Slow Data Speeds May Hurt iPhone's Prospects
    - Image Gallery: Macworld Gadget Guide
    - Network Neutrality Critics Say If Net Ain't Broke, Don't Fix It
    - If Video Is The Answer, PC Industry Looks For The Right Question
    - Is A Closed iPhone Doomed To Fail?
4. In Depth: Security
    - Microsoft Patches Mac Office
    - Invisible RFID Ink Safe For Cattle And People, Company Says
    - Adobe Patches Acrobat And Reader XSS Bug, 3 Other Flaws
    - Microsoft: Home Server Sports Serious Security
5. Voice Of Authority
    - I Want My Apple TV
6. White Papers
    - Developing ROI For Storage Area Networks
7. Get More Out Of InformationWeek
8. Manage Your Newsletter Subscription

Quote of the day:
I was gratified to be able to answer promptly. I said I don't know. -- Mark Twain


1. Editor's Note: Net Neutrality Bill Sparks Debate

What does it mean to be against net neutrality? On the face of it, it would seem difficult to take such a view. Net neutrality falls in line with our innate wish to be treated fairly, as equals. Additionally, Americans value our First Amendment rights regarding freedom of speech. So who on earth could be anti-net neutrality? Why would anyone vote against the bill introduced this week designed to preserve network neutrality?

It turns out, I think those detractors may have a point that's at least worth listening to. I'm not at all promoting the idea of paying for content. But it is important to understand both sides and discuss the potential repercussions of so-called net neutrality. For example, think of all the cool Web-enabled gadgets at this week's CES and Macworld events. Many of these gizmos require a whole lot of bandwidth. Services such as HDTV require vast amounts of bandwidth, for example, and so they require priority for a smooth reception. But net neutrality laws would not allow priority to be given. (Because we all want to be equal. See the problem?) If net neutrality is passed, broadband providers would not be allowed to offer premium service to these high-bandwidth content providers for an added fee.

The service providers say those fees would go toward improving the infrastructure, making the so-called "pipes" wider and providing better service. Ironically, in a "net neutral" world, those costs could only be defrayed by increasing user fees.

Of course, defeating net neutrality legislation wouldn't guarantee that Internet provider fees would not increase. In fact, part of the reason many are hesitant about opposing the proposed law is that they'd be siding with some of the least-trusted businesses around: The phone and cable companies are anti-net neutrality. I, too, am skeptical about paying for service, but I am also uneasy having the government run the Internet. The debate has unfairly cast a "white hat" on the net-neutrality proponents and a "black hat" on its opponents. I'm not sure this debate is so cut and dried. And I don't want to be wearing a dunce cap a year or two from now simply because I didn't understand both sides of the debate.

Jennifer Bosavage
jbosavage@yahoo.com
www.informationweek.com


2. Today's Top Story

Live From The CES 2007 Show Floor
High-definition TVs, ultramobile PCs, MP3 players, and crowds, crowds, crowds are some of the views we captured in our travels through the Consumer Electronics Show.

Related Stories:

InformationWeek Bloggers Bring You The Latest From CES 2007
Our reporters give you the scoop on what's going on at the show this week--and some of it won't stay in Vegas.


3. Breaking News

Computer Researchers Work On Auto Safety
Researchers are developing multimodal computer vision techniques that could be used for surveillance and driver safety.

Indian Outsourcer Infosys Posts Big Third-Quarter Gains
For the period ended Dec. 31, revenue was $821 million, while per-share earnings rose to 39 cents.

John Hancock Puts Its John Hancock On CSC Contract Extension
Under the extension, CSC will continue to provide software application development and maintenance services to John Hancock through May 2011.

iDefense Posts $12,000 Bounty On Vista, IE 7 Bugs
iDefense will pay $8,000 for new vulnerabilities that can be used to execute remote code, and an additional $2,000 to $4,000 for working exploit code.

Mozilla Tweaks Firefox 3.0 Feature Set
Among the features pegged as must-haves by Mozilla for Firefox 3 are an overhaul of the browser's bookmark system and new identity management tools.

MySpace Launches French Site
MySpace's latest addition joins its other foreign sites in Australia, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Spain, and the United Kingdom.

Microsoft Enlists SGI In Supercomputing Software Push
Microsoft's Windows Compute Cluster Server 2003 software will be offered on SGI's Altix XE systems, in a bid to broaden SGI's reach in the high-performance computing market.

Slow Data Speeds May Hurt iPhone's Prospects
Cingular's network provides average data speeds of between 75 Kbps and 135 Kbps. By comparison, Sprint is rolling out a network that provides 450 Kbps to 800 Kbps speeds.

Image Gallery: Macworld Gadget Guide
Hot additions to the Macintosh and iPod ecosystems are on display in this collection of pictures shot at the Macworld conference in San Francisco.

Network Neutrality Critics Say If Net Ain't Broke, Don't Fix It
Critics say proposed legislation would benefit large content companies while forcing consumers to pay the cost of upgrading U.S. communications networks.

If Video Is The Answer, PC Industry Looks For The Right Question
The PC industry is betting that consumers want to use their computers, home networks, and wide-screen TVs to move, store, and rebroadcast high-definition content around the house.

Is A Closed iPhone Doomed To Fail?
Apple made a closed system work for the iPod. Can it do the same with wireless phones?

All Our Latest News


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

Outlook For 2007
What's in store for you and your organization in 2007? Learn what your peers have planned in InformationWeek Research's Outlook For 2007 research. This report provides an early indication of what the coming year holds from the perspective of business technology executives by tracking changes to corporate IT budgets and key technology and business initiatives. Use this report to examine your company's IT strategies and purchasing plans for the year.

Can You Hear Me?
As VoIP moves to broader deployment, business technology professionals are trying to balance lowering operations costs with increased spending on VoIP technologies. Learn how 300 companies are implementing VoIP in this report by InformationWeek Research. Use this report to understand the challenges you may face in your deployment and how security concerns can affect your installation, network, and security. Read more about this research.

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


4. In Depth: Security

Microsoft Patches Mac Office
The updates to Office 2004 for Mac and Office v.X for Mac released Tuesday patched five vulnerabilities in the suites' Excel spreadsheet.

Invisible RFID Ink Safe For Cattle And People, Company Says
The process developed by Somark involves a geometric array of microneedles and an ink capsule, which is used to "tattoo" an animal. The ink can be detected from 4 feet away.

Adobe Patches Acrobat And Reader XSS Bug, 3 Other Flaws
The four fixed flaws include a cross-site scripting bug and three others that were patched with new versions of Acrobat and Reader.

Microsoft: Home Server Sports Serious Security
Windows Home Server will include security features taken from Windows Server 2003, but won't work as a central distributor for patches to PCs on the home network.


5. Voice Of Authority

I Want My Apple TV
The market for Internet video is a mess, much the same way the digital music market was when Apple introduced the iPod and iTunes in 2001. Apple could once again bring order to the chaos.


6. White Papers

Developing Return On Investment And Business Case Support For Storage Area Networks
This paper provides a structured approach for calculating SAN ROI. It identifies 29 cases, ranging from Increased Disk Utilization to Reduce/Eliminate Batch and Backup Windows, in which HDS has observed SAN ROI. This case information with accompanying savings calculations can help our clients build strong business cases for SAN deployment.


7. Get More Out Of InformationWeek

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