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Readers Talk Back On Vista, Hewlett-Packard, Firefox Vs. IE, Robots Milking Cows, And More

In This Issue:
1. Editor's Note: Readers Talk Back On Vista, Hewlett-Packard, Firefox Vs. IE, Robots Milking Cows, And More
2. Today's Top Story: Oracle Security
    - Oracle Ranks Bugs, Underlines Most Dangerous
3. Breaking News
    - IT Hiring Flat In September After A Year Of Growth
    - Q&A: Carly Fiorina On Pretexting And Her Accomplishments At HP
    - Microsoft Makes Vista Licensing Tougher On Users
    - Linux Kernel Adds Real-Time Features
    - AMD Live! Media Centers Available, Entertainment Suite Upgraded
    - IBM's Speech Translation Technology Headed To Iraq
    - Sony Says Developing Video Walkman
4. Grab Bag: Competition For Google, Apple
    - Google Docs Has Some Real Competition (ITWire)
    - Sony Developing Video iPod Competitor (TG Daily)
5. In Depth: The Yahoo Factor
    - Google Merger Ups Pressure On Yahoo To Strike Deal
    - Yahoo Ranks Highest For IM Services
    - Yahoo To Beam Digital Time Capsule Into Space
    - Yahoo Launches Mobile Search Advertising In Beta
    - HP Agrees To Include Yahoo Services In New PCs
6. Voice Of Authority: Salesforce.com: No ERP!
    - No ERP For Salesforce.com's Benioff, He's Thinking Bigger
7. White Papers: Comprehensive Monitoring
    - Comprehensive Monitoring In A Few Quick And Simple Steps
8. Get More Out Of InformationWeek
9. Manage Your Newsletter Subscription

Quote of the day:
"Facing a mirror you see merely your own countenance; facing your child you finally understand how everyone else has seen you." -- Daniel Raeburn


1. Editor's Note: Readers Talk Back On Vista, Hewlett-Packard, Firefox Vs. IE, Robots Milking Cows, And More

We're starting something new at InformationWeek: Every week, we'll do a quick roundup of reader feedback on our articles and blog posts. This week, readers talked back on Vista, Hewlett-Packard, Firefox vs. Internet Explorer, and robots milking cows.

Readers wrote in to our "Death, Taxes, And Vista" blog post to say there's more hype than reality to Vista.

The blog post argued that upgrades to Vista may be inevitable, but Tom R said, "This time may be different, since there are viable alternatives to Vista for the desktop. The upgrade cost part of the equation is not going in Microsoft's favor." Dave said, "Changes will be bullied through by Microsoft as it has done so often in the past," and Vista "really doesn't do anything more than Windows 2000"—it actually does less.

A reader signing himself as "96RT10" said, "It cracks me up that people are calling Vista an 'upgrade.' I have yet to hear someone who can actually tell me what Vista will deliver that you can't already get with WinXP and a few free progs."

On Firefox vs. Internet Explorer, readers seem skeptical that Firefox actually offers an advantage. Mike G says even though Firefox is buggy, users should continue to support it. "Smaller companies should be supported—not to defeat the big player, but simply to support innovation and to reward the hard-working small players who wish to contribute."

Reporter Sharon Gaudin had an interview lined up with former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina and asked you what you wanted to ask Fiorina. Most of the responses we got were hostile.

Bryan, who identified himself as a former HP employee, asked, "How can she justify her time at HP as good (and get over $20 million in severance)," given a list of problems, including declining stock prices, layoffs, employee morale that was "so low you had to dig for it," poor innovation, and more.

Jim Chesky said "NO THANKS" to a Homeland Security project to develop software that would automatically track foreign newspapers and Internet communications for anti-U.S. comments. "If we are worried about what people think of us, let us act in a manner that will bring praise rather then recrimination," he said.

Ed Haymond took issue with a robot cow-milking machine: "Cows and other sentient creatures were long ago reduced to the level of machines by these kinds of factory farming practices," he said.

And Gary S. Lea was offended by the use of the word "pretexting" to describe Hewlett-Packard's investigators posing as other people to obtain phone records and other personal information. "Apparently our culture has a growing penchant for inventing new words for old crimes so we can then say there is no law against it," he wrote.

Mitch Wagner
mwagner@cmp.com
www.informationweek.com


2. Today's Top Story: Oracle Security

Oracle Ranks Bugs, Underlines Most Dangerous
The new information is designed to help IT managers prioritize patching.


3. Breaking News

IT Hiring Flat In September After A Year Of Growth
IT hiring was flat in September for the economy as a whole, but technology companies like ISPs, search portals, and data processing companies continue hiring IT.

Q&A: Carly Fiorina On Pretexting And Her Accomplishments At HP
Former Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina says it was "chilling" to actually see a copy of her personal phone records that company investigators surreptitiously obtained after she had left HP.

Microsoft Makes Vista Licensing Tougher On Users
New licensing restrictions on retail versions of Vista say users can only transfer licenses between PCs once. They also forbid users from running Vista on virtual machines.

Linux Kernel Adds Real-Time Features
Basic real-time support is now in the mainline Linux kernel, making it easier for developers to build embedded Linux applications.

AMD Live! Media Centers Available, Entertainment Suite Upgraded
The AMD-based PCs come with software for video and voice communications over the Internet, games, and a browser designed to let children play games and surf the Web in a controlled environment.

IBM's Speech Translation Technology Headed To Iraq
The U.S. Joint Forces Command in Iraq plans to deploy laptops equipped with some until-now-experimental software from IBM that handles Arabic translation, speech recognition, and text-to-speech.

Sony Says Developing Video Walkman
The company also aims to double the Walkman's share of the music player market, which is around 10% currently, but details of the new product are sketchy.

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4. Grab Bag: Competition For Google, Apple

Google Docs Has Some Real Competition (ITWire)
While the world is going ooh and ah about the merging of Writely and Google Spreadsheets into a package called Google Docs and Spreadsheets, it may surprise them to know that Google has some serious competitors in the online office productivity space. What's more, in some cases they're way more advanced than the search leader.

Sony Developing Video iPod Competitor (TG Daily)
Sony is working on a portable media player that will support video playback, Reuters is reporting today. The announcement reportedly was made during a news conference in which Sony displayed the upcoming new music-only Walkman players.


5. In Depth: The Yahoo Factor

Google Merger Ups Pressure On Yahoo To Strike Deal
A similar social networking matchup could pair Yahoo with Facebook.com, some industry watchers speculate.

Yahoo Ranks Highest For IM Services
The JD Power survey also found that the percentage of home Internet service subscribers using IM on a daily basis was unchanged from 2005 at 36%.

Yahoo To Beam Digital Time Capsule Into Space
Yahoo and Yahoo Telemundo will build the digital time capsule using user-generated content and project it into space and onto an ancient pyramid in Mexico.

Yahoo Launches Mobile Search Advertising In Beta
Yahoo wants to offer ads based on search queries, similar to sponsored advertising delivered with search results on a computer.

HP Agrees To Include Yahoo Services In New PCs
Hewlett-Packard said Thursday it plans to make Yahoo the default search engine in its consumer desktop and notebook PCs.


6. Voice Of Authority: Salesforce.com: No ERP!

No ERP For Salesforce.com's Benioff, He's Thinking Bigger
Salesforce.com CEO Marc Benioff seemed almost resigned to the question asked by the press this week at the company's Dreamforce '06 user conference: When would the on-demand CRM application vendor expand by offering on-demand ERP apps, such as financial or supply chain management software, through either acquisitions or internal development?


7. White Papers: Comprehensive Monitoring

Comprehensive Monitoring In A Few Quick And Simple Steps
This white paper will show you how it's possible to get up and running quickly with a visual monitoring capability for your own environment. This paper will take you though these steps using the capabilities of Indicative software.


8. Get More Out Of InformationWeek

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