Thursday, December 29, 2005

Aussies Nail Malaria’s Tactics

From The Red Herring:

Scientists discover how the most deadly malaria parasite tricks the immune system.

Australian scientists have figured out how the world’s most deadly malaria parasite evades the immune system in a discovery that could lead to new treatments for the disease that kills an estimated 2.7 million people a year.

The findings were published online Wednesday in the journal Nature.

It turns out that the parasite, Plasmodium falciparum, is a master at deception, switching between different camouflage proteins as a fugitive might change jackets to evade the police. Like the police, human immune system cells cannot predict which camouflage the parasite will use next.

The parasite activates one camouflaged protein at a time, keeping the others inactive until the immune system recognizes that particular disguise and a new one is needed.

“It's like a leopard being able to change its spots,” said Alan Cowman, an international research scholar at the Walter and Eliza Hall Institute of Medical Research in Melbourne, Australia.

“New forms come up, and the immune system beats them down again,” he added. “Because of this a lot of people think you need five years of constant exposure to malaria in its different disguises to gain immunity.”

Many children, who make up three quarters of the estimated 2.7 million people who die annually from malaria, do not live through the infection long enough to develop immunity.

Promoting Change
The researchers were able to explain how the parasite exercises such control over the camouflage proteins it expresses. It does this using a special region of DNA called a promoter.

“The promoter is all you need for activation and silencing,” said Dr. Cowman. “It's the main site of action where everything is happening. This is the first time anyone has actually been able to infiltrate an antigenic variation program.”

P. falciparum uses a protein to decorate the exterior of the red blood cells it invades. The protein causes the cells to adhere to the lining of the blood vessels, taking them out of the main circulation where the cells would likely be destroyed.

However white blood cells can still learn to identify the infected red blood cells and destroy them. Therefore the parasite has evolved a genetic mechanism which allows it to switch to a different protein.

New Therapies
The scientists say their new discovery could lead to new treatments which interfere with the parasite’s strategy of switching disguises.

Given the global toll of the disease, few would argue that pharmaceutical research into malaria has been disappointingly limited.

There is new hope, however. In late October, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation announced it would give $258.3 million for the development of a malaria vaccine, drugs, and research to combat the disease (see Gates’ $258M Grant for Malaria).

This is a significant step up from the $323-million total global funding in 2004 for malaria research and development. But critics would argue that still much more needs to be done. Researching and developing a drug all the way to approval frequently costs pharmaceutical companies more than $1 billion.

(Shamefully) Only two companies are listed by pharmaceutical industry organization PhRMA, as working on malaria treatments.

Hollis-Eden Pharmaceuticals, based in San Diego, California, says that mid-stage clinical trials of its drug Immunitin proved successful at reducing parasite count and cleared malarial parasites in most patients within a week.

Immtech International, based in Vernon Hills, Illinois, is also in mid-stage clinical trials for a drug called DB289.

2.7 million yearly deaths, only 2 companies doing any research. What a shame on humanity!

Sunday, December 25, 2005

Merry Chirstmas

Best Wishes and Good Cheer to All.

Praise the
Lord

Friday, December 23, 2005

The EU again

The EU, (as nasty as the sound of the acronym), has threathened to fine Microsoft approximately $2.4 million daily until MSFT meets it's demands to act as a gratis R&D facility for the tons of socialistic companies sucking at it's (the EU's) teets.

Can you imagine the gall of these bozos?

Why don't they,for once show some innitiative, and invent something?

Nice Review of Vista 5270

Paul Thurrott has a very in-depth review of Vista 5270 on his site.

I hate this guy: he get to play with Vista weeks before I do!

Metadata warning from prerennial Cassandras

Those harbingers of the IT/Technology/Computer Industry meltdown scenarios are at it again.

Not content to warn all to wait to install Windows XP just in time for the next Summer Olympics, Gartner Group is again alerting us to a new problem: a metadata removal problem in the as-yet unreleased next version of Microsoft Windows, Windows Vista.

While you, I, and man+dog were asleep, Vista become the current version of Windows, and in Gold release.

I cannot believe these clowns.

Just like these articles I blogged about here, and here, it seems news organizations are sometimes engaged in a game of 'first post'.

And you expect it from them.

However, do you expect it from analysts?

Remember their previous Vista alert?

What was more hilarious: the alert or the 180-degree moonwalk clarification a few days later?

Well, they are at it again!

As usual, Ars Technica has a word on this issue. (Be sure to follow the hyperlinks on their page for reactions to the first 'alert'.)

Surprisingly, sane people pay for, and depend on these clowns for their prognostications. GiGa, up there, must be pissed at what his eponymous company has become.

Wouldn't I get better info by calling the Psychic Friends Network or Madamme Cleo?

Sheez!

Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Yankees sign Johnny Damon

Go Yankees!

The Yankees have snagged Johnny Damon from the 'Chouds for $13 million per over the next 4 seasons.

Hello!

Funny though; I never hear of any Yankee hoping/wishing/wanting to play for the Sox.

Vista Devember 2005 CTP: build 5270

Just finished the install of Vista 5270 on my dev. rig, and I must say that it is the smoothest install so far.

Funny how small details, like the oval start button, signify a departure from the old.

The eye candy continues to be better and I'm looking forward to installing Longhorn Server when I return to home tonight.

Apart from 5119 which was a dog, the CTPs seem to be moving along splendidly.

As they say in the hood, "I likes, I likes!"

Kobe burns the Mavericks for 62

End of 3rd quarter score:

Kobe 62, Dallas Mavericks 61.

Suffice it to say that Kobe Bryant had a very good game!

BTW, he sat out the entire 4th quarter, unlike the Big Fat Oaf, who would have gone on to pad his stats.

What a gamer!

PS. His 62 points surpasses the Big Fat Malcontent's career best by 1, and I know Kobe knew that. He also knows that the Big Fat Idiot will never get to that plateau again. Kazaam!

Monday, December 19, 2005

The Big Idiot Speaks (yet) Again!

That clownish former Lakers center, the Big Fat Mouth is at it again.

Responding to comments made by Lakers owner Dr. Jerry Buss in the Los Angeles Times, where Dr. Buss still insisted that trading O'Neal was the right thing to do for the franchise, the Big Fat Moron alledged that Dr. Buss was not a "honest businessman because he did not divulge the real reasons O'Neal was traded".

Which, according to the Big Fat Idiot, is "He had to make a choice, the young guy or the old guy. He made his choice, and good luck with his choice."

And this, Mr. Big Fat Einstein, is bad because....................?????

Let us analyze the Big Fat Mensa's own words again:

Dr. Buss chose the younger, more athletic, harder-working, more respectful, workout freak Kobe Bryant over an older, slower, fatter, disrespectful, money-hungry (not that there is anything wrong with that, I am too), injury-prone - all weight related, self-absorbed, self-promoting, ego-trippin' hulk in the twilight of his career clown.

Again, this, Mr. Big Fat Einstein, is bad because....................?????

Shaq, turn the page, already!

It's been over 18 months.

The Lakers did not go to the playoffs for the 2004-2005 season. Shouldn't that have been enough for you?

WTF is your beef, boy?

Oh, I remember. You promised a championship you DID NOT deliver! Same as your free-throw shooting improvements.

This is the same great center that was out-rebounded by Detroit's Ben Wallace during his last season in Los Angeles.

Man, shake yourself.

And turn the page.

Why do you still read the LA Times in Miami? Look at the local fishwrap instead.

Actually, just go away.

Already!!!

Sunday, December 18, 2005

Bill & Melinda Gates, Persons of the Year!

Time magazine has named Bill & Melinda Gates, with Bono (U2's Bono Hewson, not Sonny Bono) as it's latest Persons of the Year.

IMO, about time!

The philantrophy of the B&M Gates Foundation has really jump-started a lot of research in diseases that afflict a lot of people in improverished countries.

Being of African descent, I am especially appreciative of the resources he has dedicated to helping eradicate malaria, which kills approximately 2 million (yes, two million) Africans yearly.

On behalf of all Africans: Congratulations.

Monday, December 12, 2005

Lakers now over .500

I cannot remember the last time the Lakers struggled to get over .500 at this point in the season.

Of course, there are 61 games to go, but...these are The Los Angeles Lakers!

There's still hope, though.

Unlike the Miami Heat, we do not have the Big Malcontent/A$$hole on our team; we have something better:

Kobe Bryant!

Monday, December 05, 2005

Do the Eagles miss T.O.?

10.40 left in the 3rd quarter and the Philadelphia Eagles are down to the Seattle Seahawks by 42-0

Yes, 42-Zero, Zip, Nada, Nought!

If everyone was in their right minds, especially T.O., maybe the restructuring of the contract would have been a better idea than the current destruction of this team.

The NFL team owners, most of them having gained their current positions by being captains of industry, or by inheritance, are so used to playing hardball, that I feel they approach each negotiation as a test of who has the bigger package!

Sometime, you gotta wonder!

Saturday, December 03, 2005

66-19 Shellacking

This has been, and continuing to be, an extremely f*cked up year for me in sports!

Trip this:
  1. FIA Formula 1 Grand Prix: Ferrari came third with Schumi winning just a few races.
  2. 2004-2005 NBA season: After getting rid, thank God, of the Big Malcontent, Kazzam, my Lakers did not go to the NBA playoffs for the first time since Daryl Gates was police commissioner of Los Angeles, and the unfortunate Rodney King affair.
  3. MLB: The Yankees folded before the Pacoima Angeles of Yorba Linda like a Yugo meeting a Freightliner head-on!
  4. NCAA Basketball: The UCLA Bruins vanished faster than a tip to the waitresses at Crustacean.
  5. NCAA Football: The UCLA Bruins, not content to loose to the crosstown USC Condoms, proceeded to get a major-league shellacking at the hands of said Condoms, in the process solidifying our position as their bee-yai-ches for the next 365 days! Final Score 66-19! SheeeZ!!! For goodness sakes, Reggie Bush had 200+ rushing yards by hafltime!
More unbelievably, the Clippers, yes, that perennial bunch of LOSERS, are currently atop the Pacific Division while the Lakers are under .500.

To crown it all, since I am a SoCal homer, I have to root for the Condoms during the Rose Bowl!

Crustacean is a restaurant in Beverly Hills, CA.

What a sports year!!!

Monday, November 28, 2005

B&O BeoMedia 1

Bang & Olufsen announces the BeoMedia 1

Why?

A Windows XP multimedia computer with a proprietary UI in an electronic component form factor. (As opposed to the Windows Media Center PC user interface.)

Why??

Video is currently playback only!

Why???

What a piece of shit!

Sygate Personal Firewall, RIP

Symantec has announced the demise of the free Sygate Personal Firewall.

In order to sell the Norton crap.

Amazing!!!

Sometimes,

The truth is
stranger than fiction!

Take 'Brownie', formerly of FEMA infamy:

This bozo is starting up a firm dedicated to - folks, this is NOT a joke - disaster planning consulting!

I repeat, this is not a joke!

Actually, it is.

This horse's ass will assist you in planning a disaster.

What a moron!

I am still hoping, and praying, that there could be some way that he could be personally liable for some financial pain.

If his behavior as head of FEMA was not (legally) actionable, then the law should be changed.

Bastard.

Mass. Govt moves to OpenDocument - Part III

The Governor of Massachusetts has now come down on the side of Microsoft in the Open Document vs Microsoft Office format war.

As I posted here, it was a bonehead, ideological move from the start, potentially orphaning the millions of documents in the Massachusetts government inventory.

The champion of this stupid idea has been given the boot.

Furthermore, he is being investigated for improper activities while he was a govt. employee.

What an ass!

Incompetent review.

Sometimes, bad things happen to good companies/sites.

Take this article at Forbes.com for example.

Your first reaction would be, "Who the f*ck is the moron who wrote this piece?

Then you calm down and realize that it was done during the Thanksgiving Holiday weekend, when the adults were out of the office, and one of the interns was rewarded with a column.

From a website as respected as Forbes, this article is certainly infra dig.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Xbox 360!

The release is now!

Unfortunately for yours truly, She-Who-Must-Be-Obeyed has decreed that my Xbox 360 is going to be a Christmas present, and as such, she won't be standing in line at Best Buy for wherever to get me a copy in the next few seconds.

Oh, and BTW, I get mine on Christmas Day.

So, everyone who gets one today, I hate you.

Monday, November 21, 2005

Microsoft XML Schemas proposed as standards.

While everyone is waiting for Xbox 360, Microsoft snuck this under the rader: it has submitted the XML schemas for Word, Excel, and PowerPoint for certification as standards to the EMCA.

And also trying to fast-track the submission.

I'm sure the blogosphere would be filled with opinions shortly, with OpenOffice flames and Adobe eulogys.

The MSFT announcement is here, and a Q&A on the submission can be found here.

Lakers under 500

This is becoming quite painful!

Office 12 beta

So far, so very, very good!

I have a great feeling about this release, both from a usability angle and also from a revenue-bearing viewpoint.

Initial 48-hour review is posted on the internal website.

One Million Windows users switch to Macs!!! - Part II

I had been traveling over the past few days and missed this article in The Red Herring.

Entitled “Apple’s Halo in Doubt”, the article goes a long way in proving my post “One Million Windows Users Switch to Macs!!!” right, and debunking the Mac ‘Halo effect’ myth.

From the article:

Recent analyst reports touting the “halo effect” of Apple’s popular iPod causing a small rise in Apple’s personal computer market share are misguided at best, according to a report from Endpoint Technologies Associates.

The report, issued late Wednesday, contends that Apple’s recent rise from 1.8 percent market share worldwide to 2.5 percent in the second quarter had more to do with how far Apple had fallen rather that any belated halo cast by the iPod.

[…]

“No Sherman’s march to the sea here,” said Roger Kay, president of Endpoint. “The argument against the halo effect says that while Apple’s shipments have been up for the past four quarters, it is because they are coming off historic lows. And we are now in an upgrade cycle in which the Apple faithful buy new systems.”

[…]

According to the report, Apple’s personal computer market share has fallen steadily from a high of 16 percent in the U.S. market and 13 percent worldwide back in 1986. By the 1990s, Apple had lost some of its shine but it was still a contender as the second-largest player behind IBM with a 10 percent market share.

“In 1993, a surging Compaq took the top spot from IBM, and Apple was bumped to number three. It was pretty much downhill after that,” said Mr. Kay. “Since 2000, Apple’s worldwide share has hovered around 2 percent.”

[…]

But Mr. Kay does not believe in Apple’s halo, so he attributes the Mac’s steady decline to “a lack of openness, and a price umbrella, which let the whole PC market squeeze through underneath.”

[…]

That lack of openness caused MIT Media Lab to reject Apple’s offer to donate OS X to the consortium developing a $100 PC for buyers in developing countries

[…]

According to Mr. Kay, Apple’s market share has shown tiny but steady increases since last year’s third quarter, but these increases were in the fractions of a percentage point.

“Apple’s high is generally in 2Q, based on the weighting of its business portfolio toward education, but overall, it has gained a bit more than half a point since the nadir,” said Mr. Kay.

The timing of Apple’s rise in the personal computer market does not align very well with the launch and growth in popularity of the iPod. The biggest bump in the Mac’s market share happened two years after the initial release of the iPod.

“Not exactly a direct temporal relationship,” said Mr. Kay. “In fact, Apple’s share in PCs actually sank for two years after the iPod launch.”

While the report sees Apple’s halo effect as a bit illusory, it points out that Apple’s recent success is real. Its profits are up, its shareholders are happy, and millions of Mac and iPod enthusiasts love the company and its products. ….

The entire text of the article can be found here.

Windows Live Custom Domains (beta)

This is another great idea from the Windows Live (formerly MSN) team at MSFT.

Bring along your own (already registered) domain name, and they'll freely host your email services, albeit ad-supported.

A very good way of leveraging the in-place HotMail infrastructure.

Keep it up!

Windows live custom domains is at http://domains.live.com

Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Office 12 beta released

Today

Ray Ozzie is blogging

Talk about the devil.

Ray Ozzie is blogging, and almost immediately, he is wrong in his initial post.

Are we talking technology, here?

No.

We're talking about his good wishes for the Red Sox.

While I respect him a lot, I just cannot help but feel sorry for this misguided loyalty.

Who's going to break it to him that the next Red Sox championship will be enjoyed by his great-grandchildren, even then as middle-aged adults?

Yankees Rule!!!

Saturday, November 12, 2005

International CES 2006

Las Vegas, as usual, will be the location for the International CES 2006 to be held on January, 4 thru 7.

I, as usual too, will be there as your representative.

However, this year, there is a new twist to my being there.

I will also have a major announcement on the subject, as soon as I am able to.

We are also working frantically to bring AbsoluteVista.com live right about the same time.

Watch this space!

Note: AbsoluteVista.com will also host 64-bitVista.com.

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Goosing the NBA Free Throw

Love Mark Cuban!

This guy’s love for technology is real, and this article in Slate shows that he wants to win.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Ray Ozzie

Several years ago, Bill G. called Ray Ozzie, then the developer of what became Lotus Notes at Iris Associates, “The best programmer in the world”, and in subsequent interviews, intimated that he would like Ray to work for him.

Ray left Lotus and founded Groove Networks, whose eponymous product redefined groupware, leastways from a web-based and mobility standpoint.

Well, Bill G. got his wish when Microsoft purchased Groove Networks, and Ozzie went to work for him as CTO.

Why the history lesson?

As a shareholder of MSFT, if you look at the current (internal) Microsoft memos ‘leaked to the world', both from Gates and Ozzie, you would have to be glad that Ray works at Microsoft.

His memo elucidates clearly what is needed to both move Microsoft forward and staunch the perception that MSFT has missed the bus.

I also have to give Bill G. and Stevie B. (sounds like a hip-hop group, MC Bill G. and DJ Stevie B, don’t they?) props for hiring the right personnel for the job.

Goes to why I like the company, own the stock, and have my company focused on delivering solutions leveraging their technology!

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

One Million Windows users switch to Macs!!!

Really???

When analysts gush uncontrollably over companies/products they are enamored with, you get this drivel by one Charles Wolf.

In a report, he postulates the theory that:

“If we assume that all of the growth in Mac shipments during the past three quarters resulted from Windows users purchasing a Mac, then purchases by Windows users exceeded one million," the analyst said. "Indeed, the number of Windows users purchasing Macs in 2005 could easily exceed our forecast of 1.3 million switchers in 2006”

Wow!

Naturally, the blogosphere has taken the story, and run with it!

Headlines like ‘1 million Windows PCs junked for the Mac’ abound.

However, when respected sites/sources like Joe Wilcox (JupiterMedia/MicrosoftMonitor.com) don’t carry or comment on it, you know that it is smoke without the proverbial flames.

Remind me not to purchase any products that guy’s firm (Needham & Co) is peddling!

As usual, the crew at Ars Technica, whom I like as a BS Debunking team, have a little vignette on this issue.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Lakers 99, Nuggets 97

In the 2005-2006 Season Opener, the Los Angeles Lakers defeated the Nuggets 99-97 in overtime.

The winning shot was made by Kobe Bryant, who led the Lakers with 33 points.

Los Angeles Lakers 2005-2006 Season starts today.

The 2005-2006 NBA Season begins for me today with my Los Angeles Lakers visiting the Nuggets.

This is one really weird start to the season, with pundits predicting the Clippers, yes, those Clippers, ahead of the Lakers at the end of the season.

I cannot wait to revisit!

Monday, October 31, 2005

"DaDa" all the time!!!

Trevor is now saying “DaDa” all the time!

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

White Sox sweep!

The Chicago White Sox swept the Houston Astros to win their first World Series Championship since 1917.

Congrats, boys!

Now you own Chicago, Cubs notwithstanding.

PetroDollar II: The Return

Forbes has a very thought-provoking article on the return of the Petrodollar.

A must-read!

$100,000 USD paid for virtual property!

Checking the news while waiting for my flight back home when I noticed this story.

Eh, where does a gamer get $100 Grr to blow on virtual property?

Virtual property!

"DaDa"

Trevor said “DaDa”!!!

First time saying it, 6 months, 5 days old!

Windows for 50 cents

CIO Insight has this story on software piracy in China.

From the article:

[…]
Vendors pushing wheelbarrows piled with CDs offer Windows 98, 2000 and XP for as little as 4 yuan—just 50 cents. A slightly higher-quality product is available from tiny, hole-in-the wall storefronts. There, a copy of the software still in its original packaging—or what looks like original packaging – is available for 18 yuan, or $2.25. Still a bargain.

"I want more Chinese to use the software and to get to know the advanced technology of the United States," explained the salesman.
[…]
The BSA estimates that 90 percent of all software sold in China is pirated. That translates to more than $3.5 billion in lost revenues for the software makers. Only one country, the United States, is ahead of China when it comes to lost revenues.
[…]
Stores sell fake goods "with seemingly no fear of meaningful legal or pecuniary penalties," the report said. Raids and awareness campaigns merely interrupt the practice. "This recidivism creates the impression that Chinese national leadership lacks the will to stop counterfeiting and piracy."
[…]
"People go home early," said Shanghai-based psychologist Glen Blair. Blair's said he's seen Western families burnt out by pirates leave on a day's notice. Armed with ideas and idealism businessmen feel betrayed by the Chinese they think they have come to manage, he said.

Others adjust. Some, by going over the dark side. Even foreign CEOs can be found who have loaded up on cheap pirated software.

"When I need new software in China, I go any of the cybermarts and at first they claim they don't have it, then after a while, they always say they do," said a Western businessman in Shanghai who produces custom manufactured goods and exports it to the West.

End quote

Can you imagine how execs at MSFT must feel everytime they think about this?

Microsoft & Nokia team on Security Appliance

Microsoft is teaming with Nokia on a Unified Threat Management security appliance.

Nokia?

Why not?

Motorola, while using Windows Mobile on some of its phones, continues to use Linux on a lot of phone lines.

The UTM device will aso include VPN functionality, a la Citrix Access Gateway.

This is one of the things I like about Microsoft: it's pragmatism. Always leverage the best partner out there.

As a Microsoft partner, my company enjoys a wealth of resources that helps our client engagement reach new heights.

Then they raise the bar again.

Thanks, MSFT!

WNBA 'star' comes out of the closet.

This is news, because........???

Listen, all those nags could be dykes for all I care!

Well, most of them.

(Lord, please do not let 'Becky Lobo be a dyke!)

Who gives a fuck?

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

WOC Update due today

Windows OneCare Live i s being refreshed today.

Why should you care?

Because it will probably be included with a large enough percentage of systems sold when the product goes gold, and also sold in retail and online.

Then you have to support it.

Satellite Radio

A thread in The Hive got me thinking (again) about satellite radio.

My take is that this is one of those products/services that I simply and personally cannot justify the ROI for.

I can always listen to songs I have ripped from the CDs I have.

In any order.

There is a move to digital terrestrial AM/FM radio.

Hate to be the Grand Lord of The Obvious, but you know these guys always politick about the specs.

They have been planning this move for the past several years, and, by so doing, allowed satellite radio to not only gain traction, but surpass them in mindshare.

Terrestrial radio has gotten so bland that it is un-listenable at home where you have a myriad selection of (entertainment) choices.

If you have satellite TV or digital cable, there is also a very diverse selection of radio stations you can listen to rather than the pedestrian fare on radio.

For free, I might add.

While I love sports talk radio, I cannot stand to listen to regular talk radio, so there isn't any value there for me as well.

Furthermore, unlike the early '80s, where radio stations like WBLS and 92KTU in NYC actually did live remixes of songs, the current DJs, if you want to smear the profession, and call them that, just play songs with absolutely ludicrous and useless banter.

Satellite radio is more of the same, albeit without the banter.

Moreover, you can get most new cars with audio/MP3 input jacks, or retrofit your current rig with an FM transmitter as I did.

Finally, while there is an FCC-mandated date for the unification of these satellite radio broadcasts, the fluidity of that date requires one to either make a choice of which service to use, or both.

Personally, I'll be flambéed before I install both a Betamax and a VHS radio system in my rig.

Monday, October 24, 2005

Rosa Parks, RIP

Rosa Louise Parks, 1913-2005.

What else is there to say?

Today, a great, GREAT Lady has left us.

Thank you for your refusal to give up your seat 50 years ago.

May her soul rest in perfect peace.

We love you. We'll miss you.

You'll never be forgotten.

Moto ROKR phone not a bestseller.

You think???

Not selling well? The ROKR? The iTunes phones?

Who would have thunk?

iPod Halo.

iPod Halo.


iPod Halo.

Not!!!

Sunday, October 23, 2005

Xbox 360 Kiosk Rollout Details

Joystix.com had a 'scoop' on Xbox 360 retail store kiosk details:

An MS rep (who chooses to remain anonymous) has tipped us off to the rollout plans of the Xbox 360 kiosk in all the major U.S. gaming retailers. Here are the details:

  • All current Xbox display units in Wal-Mart will be replaced with Xbox 360 kiosks over the next three weeks. (Our previous story confirmed the start of this work during the past week.)
  • Best Buy kiosks start arriving next week, and installation should be done by the week after.
  • Target and Toys “R” Us will get inline displays (like the one pictured here), while other stores—including GameStop, EB, and Circuit City—will get either freestanding kiosks (”which look great”) or specialty display cabinets.

Finally, all of the display kiosks will use Samsung 23” HDTVs, as noted in the past. So… if you haven’t been able to play 360 demos up to this point, you’ll probably have a very good chance to do so in the near future.

Saturday, October 22, 2005

UCLA frags Oregon State

Those Bruins!

Today the UCLA Bruins fragged Oregon State 51-28 at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena, CA.

Nice, Nice!

Hopefully, they'll be 9-0 when they meet up with those clowns from accross town, the USC Condoms, who also won today 51-24 over the hapless Washington team

We (UCLA) owe them a few!

Intel VIIV

The Intel Viiv system, (VIIV?) rhymes with 'jive', was seen in a preview at the DgitalLife Expo in NYC last weekend by The Hive member, MichaelHWG.

Michael was blown away by the 'Quick Resume' (Instant On/Instant-Off) functionality of the Viiv.

Waiting for a friend's system (P4, 2.4GHz, 512MB RAM), to boot up today, I got to thinking of Mike's (Michael-HWG) reaction to the Quick Resume (Instant-On/Instant-Off) feature of the upcoming Viiv systems.

If you imagine a seasoned vet's impressed reaction, can you imagine what the general public's would be?

This will probably cement the MCE's place in the living room/home as a media server, even without a tuner.

This feature, if it trickles down to even mid-range system, not to talk of entry-level systems - a totally blue-sky scenario - for the holiday season of 2006, coinciding with the intro of Vista, would definitely makes things interesting.

2006 is shaping up to be a wonderfully exciting year for computing technology; and not just for IT professionals, but fo the proletariat as well.

Nigerian airliner missing after takeoff.

A Nigerian airliner with 114 onboard disappeared shortly after takeoff from Lagos.

Authorities received a distress call and the airliner was on route to Abuja, the capital of Nigeria.

Friday, October 21, 2005

$241,000???

The CEO of a Town & Country, Missouri-based communications company is being sued for disputing a $241,000 USD bill from a strip club.

I kid you not about the name of the town; they probably saw a country bohunk coming and decided to show the Good Ole' Boy how it's done in Da Big Citi!

$241,000.00???

American Express,through its eponymous subsidiary, said the CEO charged the amount on his corporate AMEX card at the Scores strip club in New York in a marathon session.

$241,000.00???

With three other men, the CEO allegedly used the 'Presidential Suite' where lap dances cost $10,000 USD per, and single bottles of champagne cost over $1000.00 USD.

$241,000.00???

$10,000 lap dance?

WTF is this?

Who the F*ck is the dancer?

Michelle Pfeiffer at 30?

Nicollette Sheridan at 26?

Dude, no Ho' is that bitchin'!!!

$241,000.00???

$1000+ charmy?

From grapes grown in what galaxy? It ain't that bubbly!

$241,000.00???

And the charges are from October 2003.

To crown it all, this bozo, the CEO, used his corporate card!

His corporate card, folks!

$241,000.00???

Why does this guy still have a job?

Unless he it the largest shareholder of the company, he should not only be circling the drain.

He should get run.

And fast!

$241,000.00???

The name of the CEO and his company have not been disclosed here, not for fear of litigation, but to help shield his family from further derision

Microsoft WSYP Program helps reduce program errors

In this video, Microsoft's new WSYP program is thoroughly detailed, showing the steps Microsoft, at least in the EMEA (Europe, Middle East & Africa), takes to improve products.

Hopefully, this process will be applied to Microsoft employees worldwide, with the US in particular.



Windows Media video link courtesy of Joe Wilcox, microsoftmonitor.com
.

Exalead

Exalead.com is a new search engine with a very cool UI.

I like the way the results are presented.


Link courtesy of Robert Scoble's Scobelizer blog.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

HP (now) seeks next-gen optical disk détente

In a (bold?/abrupt?) reversal, HP is now asking the Blu-Ray Disc Assoc. to support the issues Microsoft (and Intel) have publicly stated led to their selection of the HD-DVD optical disc format three weeks ago.

Wow!

I seem to remember both HP & Dell coming out the day after the johnt Microsoft/Intel announcement denouncing the selection.

All this plays to the public's view of Microsoft's Borg-like mystique.

The full text of HP's announcement can be found at here.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Microsoft Virtual WiFi

With Virtual WiFi, a single WiFi card can appear to be multiple cards and connect to several WiFi networks simultaneously.

Wow!

Details here.

Microsoft to include Antispyware in Vista

If reports are true, Microsoft will be making Microsoft Antispyware, in some form, a basic part of windows.

eWeek is running the story, including confirmation from a Microsoft manager.

My deciphering of the news is that a basic antispyware function, whatever that means, would be included in all versions of Vista.

(We're talking about the grown-up versions, not Starter!)

Also, there would be some sort of API or upgrade path to retail versions of other anti-spyware products.

I like that fact, however, you can believe that the MSFT competitors that cannot/do not want to compete in the market must be in conference with their lawyers and/or antitrust officials right now, crying wolf!
You can also trust that most of the news did not reveal that little nugget of info.

Windows Vista Shanghai Solitaire

This version of Mahjongg is the best I’ve ever seen or played.

It beats my old faithful, Kyodai Mahjongg handily.

But, don’t count out Kyodai!

It is still the most extensible and customizable 3D Mahjongg game out there.

And I fully expect them to come out swinging by the time Vista is RTM’d.

Formula One Final for 2005

To crown a bad FIA Formula One Grand Prix year for me, Renault won the constructor’s championship.

Lucent hits Grand Slam

New word from the world of POTS telcos: Grand Slam.

This refers to Voice, Data, Video, and Wireless.

And Lucent Technologies, not only has it, but has signed 2 contracts with two of the Big Bells over the past two days: Cingular Wireless yesterday, and SBC Communications today.

Anazing. Who knew!

(Yes, Lucent, the Lazarus of networking firms, that eraser of over $100 billion USD in shareholder equity!)

Microsoft & Sony team on 200-disc MCE system

The Sony VAIO XL1 Digital Living System

From the Microsoft PressPass announcement:

The kids are asleep. The popcorn's ready. Time to watch that favorite old movie on DVD. You pop open the case, but instead of “Dr. Zhivago,” you're staring at a copy of “Dr. Seuss.”

Another misplaced disc, another frustrating search through the entertainment center shelves – it’s one the more familiar and irritating drawbacks of owning large collections of entertainment content stored on DVDs and CDs.

But with today’s launch of the Sony VAIO XL1 Digital Living System, a new digital content management product developed in close partnership with Microsoft, movie and music buffs can get back to enjoying their discs instead of playing hide-and-seek with them.

Consisting of a 200-disc media changer and recorder console that connects to a Sony VAIO PC running Microsoft Windows XP Media Center Edition 2005, the Sony VAIO XL1 Digital Living System lets users control their media library in one location using the wireless keyboard and remote control.

In addition to storing and indexing up to 200 CDs or DVDs at a time for playback on audio and video devices linked to their home entertainment center through the PC, VAIO XL1 system owners can use the Media Center Edition capabilities to manage content such as downloaded movies and music, digitally recorded TV shows, personal photos and high-definition camcorder video files.

We’ve taken some of the best elements of consumer electronics, such as the multi-disc changer capability, and enhanced them with the programmability and Internet access of PC technology to create a new standard in digital content management. ….

…With the VAIO XL1’s changer and built-in disc-burning capability, users can quickly archive their content onto DVDs and not only free up their hard drive but also be able to play the content on other devices.

Its auto-rip feature also allows users to easily archive their entire music CD collection onto their PC hard drive.

For instance, they can just fill the changer with 200 CDs and select the command to copy discs before they go to bed or leave the house. The VAIO XL1 saves all of the tracks and attaches the related metadata available through Media Center Edition – artist and album name, song titles, cover artwork, genre – to the My Music folder in Windows.

That way, people can play their music directly off the hard drive and use all 200 slots of the VAIO XL1 disc changer for managing their commercial DVDs, which can’t easily be backed up on a hard drive because of digital rights management protections.

The entire text of the press release can be found here.

Xbox Live Arcade details

From Businessweek:

Peter Moore, Microsoft's VP of Xbox marketing and publishing division, recently revealed during the Digital Life event certain details for Xbox Live Arcade.
35 titles are planned to be available for the service by Summer 2006.
Over 40 developers and publishers have signed up to support Xbox Live Arcade, including Sega, Konami, and Namco.
The online service will launch November 22, the same day the Xbox 360 becomes available in the U.S.
Every member of Xbox Live Silver or Gold can download a trial version of the Xbox Live Arcade titles

"The next generation of Xbox Live Arcade for Xbox 360 will enhance the gaming experience for casual and competitive gamers alike, across the globe, providing something for everyone with world-class games and captivating content," commented Peter Moore.

"We're proud to be part of Xbox Live Arcade on Xbox 360, the world's first and only destination where gamers can find, download and buy smaller games directly to their console," said Scott A. Steinberg, Vice President of Marketing, Sega of America, Inc. "Retro, casual and hardcore gamers will be pleased to have access to the selection of quality Sega titles we plan to offer via the new Xbox Live Arcade."

Sunday, October 16, 2005

Of Course, There IS A GOD!!!

Believe in HIM always!

The Chicago White Sox just defeated the Los Alamitos Angels of Placentia.

Thank GOD!!!

Saturday, October 15, 2005

UCLA slides past Wazzu as time runs out!

Was this a beaut or what!

The Trojans beat Notre Dame

Can all the ‘Domers put down whatever weapons they’re trying to whack themselves with, and give props to USC?

Normally, I don’t give any props at all to the USC Condoms, but I AM tired of hearing about the ND mystique.

Better luck next time, South Bend.

Friday, October 14, 2005

Man + Dog wants AOL

This is getting ridiculous!

First Microsoft.

Then Google & Comcast.

Now Yahoo!

WTF is happening?

Has the world gone mad???**

Did I go into a deep slumber?

Has AOL suddenly exited a (financial value) reality-distortion field and become the 'Next Thing'?

**Famous line by the late, great, Raul Julia in The Addams Family.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Lakers Pre-Season 1

The Los Angeles Lakers started out the New Phil Jackson Kobe Bryant Era by beating the Golden State Warriors yesterday in a pre-season game played in Hawaii.

Kobe played three quarters, scoring 28 points.

Symantec & Eurocrats: A Clarification

A clarification of the thread above from the horse's mouth:

Microsoft is set to enter the security arena next year, but Symantec won't compete by complaining to antitrust regulators or suing the software giant.

"We're not looking to go whining to the EU or the DoJ for anything," Symantec chief executive John Thompson said...

Symantec has responded to questions from EU competition authorities about its role in the security industry, but has no intent to file a complaint about Microsoft, Thompson said....

"We're not involved with anything with the EU," Thompson said. "We don't need competition in the courtrooms."

A news report last week said Symantec was complaining to the EU about Microsoft, specifically concerning possible bundling of security software with Windows.

The full text of this story can be found here.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Lakers!!!

The 2005 NBA season starts mānana with a preseason game.

Please remember that I am a Los Angeles Lakers Fan first, and a basketball fan second.

This is THE PREMIER SPORT in the life of John Obeto.

Followed by the NFL (no personal team for the past 3 years), Formula 1 Grand Prix racing, the Yankees, etc.

Microsoft & Real settle for $$$

Microsoft has bought off settled with Real Networks to the tune of $761 million USD.

More importantly, Real gets to have embedded linking to download sites for RealPlayer - or whatever it is called today, and some more sweeteners.

Oh, BTW, the antitrust lawsuit goes away.

Unfortunately, the Eurocrats might not be swayed by this.

The official MSFT press release can be found here.

Monday, October 10, 2005

No more baseball for me this year!

My Yankees lost to the La Puente Angelos of Pico Riviera.

2nd time in 4 years!

I cannot stand it!!!

Robotic vehicle completes course and wins competition.

In the annals of computing and technology, this is a big leap.

A robotic vehicle, Stanley, from Stanford University, has completed a real-world road course under autonomous control, a first.

Congratulations.

Symantec runs to Eurocrats for help

Symantec has complained/is complaining to the Eurocrats, aka the EU Office of Competition, over Microsoft's plans for the Anti-Virus/Anti-spyware space.

Coupled with the SecureIT Alliance initiative, I can see where Symantec might be running scared.

However, if you add the products from the recently-completed Veritas acquisition, I foresee more competitive rather than complementary products for both of them.

While it is the right thing for Symantec CEO Thompson to do as his fiduciary duty to his stockholders, it is still cowardly, IMO.

I mean, the products have not shipped, and the bundling options have not been set.

Then again, a pre-emptive strike sometimes works.

iPod snatching!

iPod snatching is on the rise in the UK.

If I was the Prime Minister, I would be so pissed at the ruffians giving the country a bad name that I would ask to Home Office to increase the penalty for such a crime to a 5-year minimum!

iPod snatching!

What a bunch of losers!!!

L

Sunday, October 09, 2005

Friday, October 07, 2005

See you in 2093!

What a difference a year makes!

In my post here, I called last year’s Red Sox World Series win an aberration.

Turns out that I was right!

Today, the Chicago White Sox unceremoniously dispatched the pretenders back to Choudland, where, hopefully, we would never hear from them again.

Leastways, in this generation.

Hey, Chouds, here’s looking at another 89 years!!!

How 'bout them Yankees?

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Microsoft Client Protection

Microsoft’s announcement of an enterprise security product, now dubbed Microsoft Client Protection should come as no surprise to anyone.

With the beta 1 scheduled for release at the end of the year, this is a product I think a lot of Microsoft shops would have to consider, especially since it would almost certainly be part of the Licensing/Software Assurance umbrella.

I hope to be part of the beta.

Saturday, October 01, 2005

SP3 of XP?

Now confirmed is a Service Pack 3 of Windows XP, scheduled to ship after Vista has gone gold, around Christmas of '06.

Why?

I swear this is going to make my workload heavier, since I'm going to have to accommodate clients who would want to extend XP beyond, God forbid, '08.

And test, validate, and implement it.

Woe, O Woe!

Office 12 beta

If you watched the video on Channel 9, you see why you must be in this beta program.

Yankees vs Red Sox

The Boston Red Sox, last year's aberration notwithstanding, are roaches!

Die already, Die!

Hope MM comes through for us manana.

Love my Yankees!

YAMSF from Sony

Yet Another MemoryStick Format!

This tells you why they lost the portable music device market.

I am the unfortunate owner of two devices that utilize MemorySticks: a Samsung camcorder and a Sony digicam.

While every Sunday, in the fishwrap glossies, you can see stores selling other memory card formats at 1G capacity for around $59 after rebates, the MemoryStick format is stuck at $89-99 for 512MB.

Feel free to assume that I would never buy any device again that has a Sony-spec card.

Ever!

Office 12 to support PDF files natively

Brian Jones, a program manager for the Office 12 team, is blogging that Office 12 will have native PDF support.

This is a big, and good forward-looking step for Office. Especially since it looks like .pdf files are here to stay.

Remote-controlled padlock

Once in a while, there comes a device that appeals totally to the hedonistic part of moi.

This remote-controlled padlock is such a device.

OneNote 12 details

This article has a lot of information on OneNote 12.

RadioShack to sell $299 AMD PCs

This news item first came across as a joke to me.

And I am still waiting for the punchline.

This device, the Personal Internet Communicator - I swear I did not make it up to belittle the device, was developed for 3rd World countries by AMD (instead of them developing new fabs).

Abbreviated PIC, but pronounced rhyming with hiss.

Currently on sale in India, with China and Turkey to be added soon.

Somehow, somewhere, some Mensas at AMD got together and decided that this PIC device, specs at the bottom of this post, would make a great addition to the computing arsenal of American homes.

And give them, the AMD crew, props for having schneidered the brass at Tandy Corp. into thinking, no, believing, that this is the Next Big Thing!

“Now on sale, at the Great American Technology Store, next to rolls of speaker wires, and diodes, the AMD PIC.”

Begs the question:

Why?

Why??

Why???

Dell offers a $299 PC, really $374 before a $75 rebate, but that is a Pentium 4 system with 256MB of RAM, 80G hard disk, a 17” monitor, free shipping*, Windows XP Home.

For comparison, the PIC comes with a 366MHz AMD Geode, Windows CE, 10G hard drive and no monitor. Shipping not necessary as you can pick one up at you nearest strip mall RadioShack.

This fixed-function device costs $299! Without a monitor!

I want to see if this (really, really bad) idea has legs.

Reminds me of the late, definitely not lamented Java Terminal, popularly known as the Javinal, which rhymes with urinal. (I first saw the word Javinal mentioned by Aaron Goldberg, in an issue of PC Week, many eons ago; so credit to him for the word.)

Wonder if there is a trend here….

Would the PIC turn out to be a piece of shit?

Time would tell.

Seems everyone wants to sell a substandard PC, hardware or software to developing countries.

How would these guys ever compete, but become/remain indentured slaves, fodder for the developed countries if their educational and training equipment continue to be a few steps behind?

Microsoft, are you listening?

There HAS to be a way of selling a computer hardware and/or software cheaply to these countries that acknowledges the fact that their only 'crime' is that they are poor, not brain dead.

*Dell as of the date of this post, is no longer offering free shipping to residential addresses, you would have to go to the nearest US Post Office to retrieve your 'free'-ly shipped package.

Samsung's $33b USD bet

Samsung has committed to building fabs costing $33 billion USD over the next 7 years in Korea.

What a bet!

Is there any wonder why this company has roared past Sony?

Also, they execute like mutha's.

Wow!

$100 computer for the poor

MIT's Nicholas Negroponte revealed the details of a $100 computer for poor countries.

This is what they need?

A $100 computer using an OS and application software that is non-standard in the working world?

Not food!

Not water!

Not healthcare!

Not better agricultural assistance!

Not debt relief!

Not even a moratorium on arms being shipped to warring factions!

No, not that. Thay need a computer to satisfy the 'vision' of an ivory tower resident who has never walked in their shoes.

Crap!

Thank you for the doorstop!

Cowtown, USA redux

Well, well, well!

When I blogged here about the Suckramento Pro teams, the Cowtown WNBA team were on the verge of losing to the Connecticut Sun.

What did they do after that? Only win the 2005 WNBA Championship!

Props.

I guess we know who the real Sacramento Queens are!!!

Been in The Basement

Been in The (medical) Basement for the past two weeks, so no blogging.

Read the news and had a lot of opinions, but not the strength to put them to e-ink.

Back to the grind.

Friday, September 16, 2005

New broadband legislation proposed by congress

IE, Firefox, & Exploits

In a very good post here, George Ou, of ZDNet.com, looks at the number of vulnerabilities over the fast 6 months for both Mozilla Firefox and Microsoft Internet Explorer, and gives us unbelievable stats.

Which browser had more exploits over the past six months? His answer will surprise you.

Good article.

Thursday, September 15, 2005

Cowtown, USA

What is is about the Suckramento Pro teams?

First the 'Queens' had a major league meltdown one year, jake'd the next year, and performed the second greatest tank job in NBA history another year.

Now the Cowtown WNBA team could not bring it home as well.

The sickest thing is listening to local Sports Talk radio, and having callers tag the GM of the teams as a 'brilliant man.'.

What??? Are you fu*king kidding me? In what book?

Don't get me started on clowns tooling around in their rigs wearing Loser gear and sporting 'Queens' stickers.

Sick, sick, sick!!!

I really miss SoCal!

Microsoft to buy 50% of AOL (II)

My membership in The Hive makes me privy to some very important POVs re issues of the day. I truly appreciate my membership.

In response to my post on this subject, there was the concern about the source of the report, and the fallout, if any, to MSFT shareholders. My reply follows:

"Microsoft shareholders would not be upset because it would almost certainly be an outright cash purchase, without any new issuance of shares.

You're right about the 50% figure. However, you are making the assumption that the bureaucrats/Eurocrats in the government departments involved would see it as that.

They are going to see MSFT, and AOL, and start filing lawsuits.

They might have a case as you, I, and the general public would see Microsoft, while being only a 50-50 partner, as having operational control.

It is this operational control that might bother them, despite the fact that AOL has been losing customers to broadband for the past few years.

A Microsoft purchase would save AOL, stanch the current bleeding, and, coupled with the recent flood of innovations coming out of the MSN team, actually reverse the flow.

Also the combo would be formidable in terms of setting web standards; which might be another concern, especially to the playa’ haters. And such a team would be a Playa', with a Capital 'P'.

For Time Warner, the sale would let it escape the scorn it has been getting since the start of the AOL-Time Warner merger debacle. It would also receive some cash to mollify shareholders, and be able to tell Carl Ichan that there are moves afoot to enhance shareholder value without the sale/IPO of Time Warner Cable.

It looks to be a win-win situation if the governmental review agencies don’t meddle."

Microsoft to buy 50% of AOL

According to the New York Post, citing two unnamed sources close to the talks, Microsoft is in 'advanced negotiations’ with Time Warner, the parent company of AOL to purchase an equal share of the company.

This would probably be Microsoft's largest purchase to date, as analysts speculate the valuation of AOL as being in the $10b to $20b USD range.

In the battle for eyeballs, it would seem to be a very good fit, as the number of MSN (+AOL) members would more than double immediately.

However, IMO, this is fraught with potential problems, the two foremost being

1) The antitrust department of the DOJ, and of course, the morons at the EU Office of Competition. Would it be only the North American unit?

2) The baggage associated with AOL. A-O-Hell, anyone?

The story can be found here, free registration required.

Dell drops Itanic

This should come as no surprise to anyone.

Round Rock did not want the Itanium in the first place and came up with so-so systems based on the chip.

Why this decision to drop the Itanium, aka Itanic, is newsworthy beats me.

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

Google launching blog search

UPDATE: Court allows Kai-Fu Lee to work for Google: Sort Of!

Adding injury to insult, Microsoft has offered to settle the case if Lee is barred from the injuncted (my word) jobs until the end of his employment contract, sometime next summer.

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

UPDATE: Court allows Kai-Fu Lee to work for Google

With details in, it seems that the injunction lifted for Kai-fu Lee, does indeed gag him!

He is barred from talk, speech, and other areas he worked at at Microsoft.

Court allows Kai-Fu Lee to work for GOOG

In a Washington court today, Microsoft lost an injunction barring Kai-Fu Lee from working for Google until either the resolution of a trial to be held next year, or the results of a counterclaim by Google in a California court.

Also, the judge ruled that Lee could continue recruiting for GOOG as that wasn’t a violation of his employment contract.

Microsoft Gadgets

In the Konfabulator style, comes Gadgets, from Microsoft.

While, IMO, Konfabulator's widgets are cool, the inclusion of an API for gadgets, widgets, whatever, into the underlying OS allows for an even richer experience than before.

Coupled with the embedding of RSS into Vista, can you see this revolutionary evolution?


I always wanted to use a line like that.

Microsoft MAX

Microsoft codename MAX is a new tool from MSFT

This is a new photo-cataloging and sharing product from Microsoft that takes advantage of WinFX.

It is awesome and fast!

It also features dynamic thumbnails, very very cool

Monday, September 12, 2005

Power outage at PDC05

A utility worker made a wrong connection and caused a power outage that affected much of Los Angeles, including downtown LA, where the Microsoft Professional Developer Conference 2005 (PDC05) is being held.

Very comical, almost hearkens to the Wily E Coyote's ACME toolkit!

EBay purchases Skype II

Turns out that the total cost for Skpye for EBay could rise to $4.1b USD over the next few years if performance targets are met.

Double WOW!

The horse's ass resigns

Praise the Lord!

That idiot, Brownie, the former Judges & Stewards commissioner for the International Arabian Horses Assoc, resigned today as head of FEMA, saying it was in the best interest of the agency (FEMA), and the President.

You think?

If this guy had any sense, he would have resigned the day after Hurricane Katrina hit, and the President started taking flak.

If the President is to blame for Brownie, it is for his loyalty to Brownie. Loyalty to a schmuck who turns out to be the south end of a northbound Arabian horse!

IANAL, but I keep wondering if there is any way this doofus can be sued, or be personally liable for his incompetence.

Come to find out that I am not alone in this view.

EBay purchases Skype for $2.6b

EBay has announced that the rumors are true: it has agreed to purchase Skype Technologies for $2.6b USD in cash and stock.

I hope most of the purchase is in stock!

Oracle to purchase Siebel

Oracle today announced the purchase of Siebel for $5.85b USD.

A former high-flyer, Siebel had fallen on hard times over the past few years and seen its stock tumble.

The deal marks a return to the fold for Tom Siebel, the company's eponymous founder, who was once at Oracle.

With this purchase, Oracle has virtually purchased all of its US-based competition in it's forthcoming battle with SAP AG of Germany, and Microsoft.

As I blogged here, Chuck Phillips, is making his expertise known.

This is two in a row for current Siebel CEO, George Shaheen, who, from his time as CEO of Anderson Consulting, now known as Accenture, resigned to become CEO of (in)famous internet grocer, Webvan

Sunday, September 11, 2005

Dismal 2005 Formula-1 Season

Has this been a dismal Formula-1 season for me or what?

Now add BAR’s Takuma Sato to the list of things pissing me off about this season.

This Sato pendejo, ran into Schumi’s car from behind in today’s Belgian Grand Prix.

The management of BAR must have really schneidered the Formula-1 judges because the punishment for the transgression, dropping down 10 places, is NOT enough!

The Scobleizer hints at great things to come at PDC05

Robert Scoble, both in his Scobleizer blog, and on Channel 9, has me titillated about the new stuff to be announced at PDC05.

I am waiting to be enthralled!

Saturday, September 10, 2005

MSN becomes a platform

Microsoft's MSN division will reportedly be opening up a number of API's in its bid to become the Place in cyberspace.While details have not been divulged yet, some facts about the matter can be found on Dare Obasanjo’s blog.

If this is true, and there isn’t any doubt that the APIs would be opened up, I wonder what GOOG must think of this development.

While Google may have the eyeballs now, the potential to monetize the MSN APIs is a great magnet for a lot of companies/developers out there.

Dare Obasanjo developed the RSS Bandit feed aggregator.

iPod nano II

Come to hear that Creative has had a product called the Zen Nano since April of this year.

If true, I would have to agree with a very appropriate word in the first report I saw of this from that wonderful gadget site, engadget.com: cruel.

I really would be more that a tad bit cruel, it would be downright deadly cruel, coming on the hills of the UI patent grant to Creative.

Where are iPod fanboys and their rants about innovation.

Can you say "copy"?

Creative can!

Windows Vista SKUs?

Paul Thurrott has an article on the Windows Vista SKUs and their descriptions ahead of a formal announcement by Microsoft at next week's PDC.

The versions are:
  • Windows Vista Starter Edition
  • Windows Vista Home Basic Edition
  • Windows Vista Home Premium Edition
  • Windows Vista Professional Edition
  • Windows Vista Small Business Edition
  • Windows Vista Enterprise Edition
  • Windows Vista Ultimate Edition

Further information on these SKUs can be found at the link above.

Tune in as this story develops.

Friday, September 09, 2005

Load WinXP on a 256MB USB drive

From Alice Hill's RealTechNews.com, is this article about setting up an instance of Windows XP on a USB drive.

There is news, and there is NEWS.

This is NEWS.

It allows me to go around on my t-shooting trips - granted, I never really do any of those any more - with another weapon in the toolkit.

I will definitely use it.

I will not be breaking my Windows XP EULA: I have a Microsoft Action Pack subscription allowing me this license.

Thanks, Alice.

For IT professionals, the Microsoft Action Pack, TechNet or MSDN subscriptions are the best values on Terra. Period!

Disarming NOLA

While it is the right thing to do, IANAL, but it sort of feels like it infringes on the gun owners constitutional rights.

PalmSource: Going...Going...Gone! II

On a more important note, I wish I had seen this coming: stock was up $7.82 or 78% in one trading day!

I would have cleaned up!

'Patch Tuesday' cancelled

Microsoft has cancelled the coming Patch Tuesday due to a 'quality problem'.

Thanks, guys!

It is proactive ways like this that restores the public's trust in you.

Not to talk about those of us who have to support others.

Horse-trainer recalled to staging point.

Brownie, aka Michael Brown, of FEMA infamy, has been recalled to the starting line in D.C.

Am I alone in praying that this just a step before he is sent back to the stables where he belongs?

What a moron.

I cannot count how may ways this punk has done a disservice to the President.

And this idiot did not have the brass to fall on his sword and resign, thereby revealing to the world that he, not the president, was to blame for the morass in NOLA.

Bastard!

A$$hole!!!

EU mulls .kid domain!

.kid domain for child security?

Are these guys kiddin’?

Won’t nefarious miscreants flock there?

When I first read this, I had to do a double-take to see it wasn't a joke or sarcasm.

Eurocrats!!!

Motorcycle airbag

To protect you from a full frontal impact.

The bag deploys from somewhere between the handlebars.....

???

And this helps you... how?

New Sony Walkman

These Walkman devices, I presume, are the very best Sony can come up with?

Looking at their VAIO devices, their defunct Clié PDAs, their former portable music players, and now, this, makes me very, very sorry for them as a company.

They seem to have been smitten with the IBM-style penchant for incompatible devices based on what they saw as the premium-ness of their brand.

Oh yeah?

Whoever green-lighted this brain-dead contraption should commit hara-kiri 腹切り immediately to save face for not only the company, but his/her own honor.

Sheez!

They are also exhibiting the classic symptoms of an entrenched company looking back at past glories. As a result they think that there is such a premium vested in the Sony and or Walkman brand that they can come up with such shit as an incompatible music format for their portable players and the Mini-Disc. (The Mini-Disc is an apropos example of a ‘what if we gave a party, and no one came’ type of device!)

These new devices do not support WMA; as such still limited to Sony’s music store.

Nowadays, no one gives a fuck about the Sony brand.

Time may prove me wrong, but I doubt it would be this WalkMan.

Listed Up!

The Walkman era is so over!

What a bunch of MYOPIANS!

PalmSource: Going...Going...Gone!

PalmSource is being sold to Japanese firm, Access in a cash-only deal.

Wow!

After the name reversion by the hardware component from PalmOne to Palm, and the likely decision by that company to utilize Microsoft Windows Mobile 5.0 as the underlying OS, there just did not seem to be any use for PalmSource.

Also, the move to Linux has yet to pay off.

However, Access will allow the company’s products to live on, in the NTT-DoCoMo products utilizing the NetFront line it produces.

JD D's Birthday

Today is my friend JD's birthday.

No, I won't say how old she is! (old!)

I wish the lady happy birthday.

Thursday, September 08, 2005

Skype -> Ebay?

First it was Yahoo! & Skype for $1billion USD.

($1b being the 'absolute minimum' one of Skype's VCs allegedly wants.)

Then it was Fox buying Skype for anywhere from $3b to $9b.

Now, the WSJ is reporting that Ebay is in talks to purchase Skype for $2-$3b. (The NY Post says that the bandied-around price is $5b.

Keep in mind that the revenues of Skype is...what? Circa $8 - $12 million USD.

And POTS, the incumbent telcos, have nothing stopping them from bundling VOIP services into their current offerings. Nothing at all.

These POTS are the Grand Masters of Hardball. And they have been at it for over a century.

When MSFT wanted to play in their court, it asked for permission. Believe that! Microsoft asked to be invited to the dance. These guys are not called incumbent monopolies as an affectation.

Telcos are moving into the holy grail of Triple Play, and do you think they will allow Skype to dictate what goes on?

If you are already buying the broadband line from them, you might as well use their VOIP service. It is just that simple!

The pundits hyping Skype keep talking about their IM lists. Phooey! With looming interoperability between virtually all IM clients, that advantage evaporates. Immediately!

I do not know what Ebay purportedly sees in Skype, to justify a purchase. But then, if I did, I would not be writing this blog. I would have made my billion$ and retired, hedonistically, to an island in the South Pacific.

Aylwin Lewis is new CEO of Sears

You go, Bro'!

Northrop to use A330

Northrop’s decision to use the Airbus A330 to compete with Boeing 767 for next-generation air tankers is a big sellout.

And an insult to all Americans.

When the Eurocrats wanted to build their own aircraft, they did not ask for a flyaway contest with any US product

Now Northrop wants to use the A330 because it will be built in Mobile, Alabama?

What a bunch of gnats.

I’m pissed at the DOD for even considering such a flyaway.

The DOD should have selected a Boeing airframe and asked the companies to contest the modification of said airframe. Or, asked the contestants to choose from an airframe in US inventory.

Let’s stay American, folks. It IS the right thing!

Google hires Vinton Cerf

The ‘Father of the Internet’ has a new gig.

Good for him!

DOJ sues NAR

The US Department of Justice sued the National Association of realtors after three, yes, three fruitless years of negotiations over restrictions placed on listings by (mostly) internet-based realtors.

In order to preserve their traditional 6% vig on each and every sale, the NAR had amended its listing rules to allow realtors to deny listings in an ad hoc fashion; locking out emerging discount brokers.

With the rise in home prices over the past few, these guys have actually raised the cost of home purchases without doing any more work.

With the arrogance of the entrenched, and, as we would find in the future, hubris, the NAR decided to diddle the DOJ along, forgetting that the DOJ IS the government. And can change the rules of play at any time.

Maybe they should have called MSFT to ask how not to piss the DOJ off.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

iPod nano

Hot and cold. Hit and miss.

nano and ROKR

In another excellent example of stealth marketing, Apple introduced the iPod nano under the guise of the introduction of the iTunes phone, the Motorola ROKR.

Feel free to pencil me down as one who would not be seen with the abortion called the ROKR.

But the nano! Man, this product is sweeeeet! An excellent example of brand extension.

But would I shell out the kash? No!

I already possess – with wifey – an iPod 20G, and two iPod shuffles, and I just won a Creative Zen Micro from The Hive, not to talk about the IPAQ and Axim 50.

Plus, it is sold at Wal-Mart!

Where is the snob appeal?

I have to use other earphones to differentiate.

My earlier post has some of my feelings on the ROKR

iTunes Phone

Is that all?

This is what the cognoscenti have been waiting for?

The Moto ROKR

100-song limit?

This is it?

Wow!

Saturday, September 03, 2005

The Captain (re)joins the Lakers

The Captain, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, has rejoined the Lakers as a coach, focussing on helping their young big men reach their potentials.

About time!

The 'Sky Hook' will be back.

Hopefully, this will make the 'big kazaam' in South Florida shut the fuck up!

Welcome back, Cap'n.

Friday, September 02, 2005

Microsoft's 'lost' royalties

Sometimes, MSFT takes the 'honor' principle too far.

Shocks me to learn that Microsoft's nearly 280 worldwide OEM distributors purchase software and only pay for them when sold to builders!

What???

In an article on CRN, Microsoft is changing the system to pay-as-you-go for better accounting.

Well, please do so and quick! Then lower the price of CALs.

Hurricane Katrina's Aftermath


Wired.com
has an article on Katrina, titled 'They knew What To Expect', that just boggles the mind.


It also indicts the authorities, both local and Federal, for their ineptitude.

I hope this stops all the people from excoriating the President unfairly: all the reports he must have gotten, from the people on the ground, no less, said everything was OK.

Google print ads

John Battelle's Searchblog has an insightful article on Google's new print ad initiative.

The moral is, if you ever want handholding, be prepared to pay for it.

John Battelle was a founder of the Industry Standard magazine.

Thursday, September 01, 2005

Mass. Govt moves to OpenDocument II

Joe Wilcox of JupiterMedia has an analysis of the news on this topic.

Microsoft to embed UNIX tools in R2, Longhorn Server

Another one of those decisions that should have been made a while back, probably as an optional install on the Server discs.

Hate to say it, but, 'about time'!


Mass. Govt moves to OpenDocument

The mind boggles.

Talk about drinking the Koolaid!

I want to see how this bonehead move plays out.

Katrina Catastrophe

How come there wasn't a strategic plan for Katrina?

On the federal level.

And, as a victim of Hurricane Ivan, I wonder why the federal response is always in hindsight?

Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Mac Mini Test Drive: Pulled after one day!

Egg on their faces!

And the offer was supposed to last until the end of October '05.

What's up, Job-sy?

Microsoft to purchase Teleo III

Om Malik.

He envisioned a purchase of Teleo by MSFT over three months ago.

Props!

SBC to rebrand as AT&T?

Businessweek is reporting that once SBC's purchase of AT&T is completed, the combined company will rebrand as AT&T.

This is wise, since AT&T has a better reputation for service and is more nationally, correction, globally known than SBC, formerly a super-regional telco.