In This Issue:
1. Editor's Note: RSS: The Best Technology You're Using After All
2. Today's Top Story
- Microsoft, Google Settle Kai-Fu Lee Lawsuit
3. Breaking News
- Symantec Says Vulnerability Hits 63 Products
- Ford Computer With Employee Data Stolen
- Microsoft Will Fight EU Fines
- Mozilla's Thunderbird 1.5 E-Mailer Closing On Final
- Mozilla Seeks Filmmakers For Ad Contest
- E-Carols For Cell Phones In The Works
- European Commission OKs Oracle-Siebel Deal
- RIM Reports Profits Up, But Lowers Expected Subscriber Growth
- 3Com Reports Networking Sales Growth
4. Grab Bag
- Xbox 360 Photo Scam Still Going
- Portable Video: It's The Content, Stupid
- Court Blocks California Video-Game Sales Restriction
5. In Depth
- Firefox 1.5 Stability Problems? Readers And Mozilla Respond
- Eh? iPod Earbuds Can Cause Hearing Loss
- Personal Tech Guide
- Automakers Embrace The IPod
- Xbox Photos Fetch Huge Prices On eBay
- Google Desktop Apps To Ship With Lexar Flash Drive
- AOL Releases App Suite In Beta
6. Voice Of Authority
- 2006: One Reporter's View
7. White Papers
- Virtualization: Top 10 Considerations For Choosing A
Server Virtualization Technology
8. Get More Out Of InformationWeek
9. Manage Your Newsletter Subscription
Quote of the day:
"Get your facts first, then you can distort them as you please." -- Mark Twain
1. Editor's Note: RSS: The Best Technology You're Using After All
I was surprised and pleased by the interest sparked by my
recent note about RSS and syndication ("Why Don't More People Use RSS
Feeds?"). Surprised, because the point of that note was that
hardly anybody uses RSS, and that's pretty much the same as
saying nobody gives a darn about it. Turns out people do
care about RSS--they're just not using it.
Or are they? Officials at KnowNow, a vendor of technology that
uses RSS, say that many people use RSS and are unaware that
they're doing so. They took issue with a statistic I quoted from
Forrester, which found in a September study that only 6% of
Internet users are using RSS. KnowNow countered with a white paper from Yahoo that says 31% of Internet users are using
RSS--they just don't know it. They're using personalized start
pages, such as My Yahoo and My MSN.
Only 4% of users have knowingly used RSS, according to Yahoo, and
that's pretty consistent with the Forrester report, and indicates
that Forrester might simply have asked the wrong question.
That's pretty encouraging news to RSS advocates.
And that's pretty consistent with our experience with the greater
Internet. Ask 100 random people if they use HTTP, POP3, or IMAP,
and they'll say, "Huh?" or "I have no idea what those things are"
or "No, I'm sorry, I'm lactose intolerant." As them if they use
the Web and E-mail and you'll get different answers. And yet
those are really the same questions.
Heck, my own father was an Internet addict, but if you'd asked
him if he used the Web, he might well have said no. He called it
"Netscape," because that's the application he used to access the
Web. Even after he switched to Internet Explorer, he still called
the Web "Netscape."
I started out that editor's note by saying: "I'm flummoxed why
more people aren't using RSS feeds as their primary means of
accessing frequently visited Web sites." Strike that. Forget I
said it. At 31% of Internet users, that's pretty much the
adoption rate I'd expect for an emerging technology that's
relatively recent, and kind of difficult to understand. The
benefits of RSS are real and significant, but they're not easily
grasped without trying it out awhile, and they don't become
Still, more than two-thirds of Internet users aren't using
RSS, and I was gratified to get lots of comments from them
explaining why and discussing what needs to happen before they
do. I'll include highlights of those comments throughout the rest
of this note. Read the rest for those comments, and
also to find out how you can get started using RSS. And, as
always, we want to hear from you about RSS or any other subjects;
leave your comments by following the preceding link.
Microsoft, Google Settle Kai-Fu Lee Lawsuit
Microsoft said late Thursday it had reached a settlement with
rival Google and former employee Kai-Fu Lee, who went to work for
Google. The settlement ends a legal battle that had exposed
behind-the-scenes rancor between the companies.
Microsoft Will Fight EU Fines
Microsoft responded to the European Commission's threat of huge
daily fines with some fighting words from corporate counsel Brad
Smith, who says, "Every time we make a change, we find that the
commission moves the goal post and demands another change."
3Com Reports Networking Sales Growth
The increased product revenue helped 3Com narrow its loss. The
company reported a net loss of $10.7 million, or 3 cents a share,
compared with a loss of $48.8 million, or 13 cents a share, for
the same period last year.
Sacha Lecca With 'Toy Technology'
What disappears when exposed to air, water, or pressure; costs
half a million dollars; and took more than 10 years to develop?
----- The latest research, polls, and tools -----
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.
Expecting a Raise?
Should you get a raise in 2006? Learn how your pay compares to
that of your peers with our free and confidential online tool.
Featuring more than 20 job functions and tracking IT compensation
across 20 metropolitan areas, InformationWeek Research's 2005 IT
Salary Adviser makes it easy to compare your salary and compensation.
4. Grab Bag: News You Need From Around The Web
Xbox 360 Photo Scam Still Going (GameSpot)
Unscrupulous grifters trick desperate holiday shoppers into
buying pictures of Xbox 360s on online auction sites. The hot
holiday item, if one believes the media hype, is the Xbox 360.
Portable Video: It's The Content, Stupid (The Washington Post)
My wife says I'm addicted to TV, and she may well be right. Homer
Simpson is my role model and I think Jon Stewart should run for
president. But do I want to carry video with me wherever I go,
and is the content worth paying for? Those are the questions I
pondered while playing with my new video-enabled iPod.
Court Blocks California Video-Game Sales Restriction (Reuters)
A federal judge has blocked a California law that would have made
it illegal to sell or rent violent video games to minors, saying
he doubted whether such sales could be banned even if the games
were proved to cause violent behavior among children.
Eh? iPod Earbuds Can Cause Hearing Loss
Earbud headphones, the type that rest inside the ear, can lead to
permanent damage after just an hour of high-volume music in the
110- to 120-decibel range, equivalent to the noise level of a concert.
2006: One Reporter's View
Tony Kontzer says: We InformationWeek reporters are asked to
cover a lot of ground, each with several beats that we track.
Keeping current on so many fronts presents quite a challenge, and
we typically have to work in a sort of ad hoc rotation, cycling
from one technology or vertical market to the next, hoping that
we don't miss anything big on one beat while covering another.
With that in mind, I thought I'd try to offer some quick takes on
what I expect to see on the CRM, E-commerce, storage, and travel
fronts during 2006.
7. White Papers
Virtualization: Top 10 Considerations For Choosing A Server Virtualization Technology
The playing field for server virtualization has become crowded
over the last few years. Competition is always good for a market
as vendors provide better products at more competitive prices.
This checklist provides a list of the main considerations and
basic differences between the technologies to provide a starting
point for technology evaluation.
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5 Top Federal Initiatives For 2015As InformationWeek Government readers were busy firming up their fiscal year 2015 budgets, we asked them to rate more than 30 IT initiatives in terms of importance and current leadership focus. No surprise, among more than 30 options, security is No. 1. After that, things get less predictable.