Good morning readers. For some odd reason you, like I, may have come in this morning to be confronted with the index of the website rather than the actual homepage. My apologies for this gremlin, we’ve miniaturised a tech team and sent them into the server with all kinds of futuristic technology to take care of it.
First up in news terms, everyone seems to be loving AMD and their Fabulous Fabs (I should be shot for using that, I really, really should). Apparently not only can their Precision Manufacturing Marchitecture do wonders for their own Fab production, increasing yields to upwards of 150 percent of what’s expected ; but it seems that it may have saved Microsoft a bit of bother by coming on-stream just as the IBM processors running the Xbox 360 went into production. Took 500 patents to make that work
Speaking of patents, I thought you could only make an auction of not-very-immediately-captivating items exciting on TV. Apparently not, and kudos to the author of the following who charted an anonymous patent auction blow for blow on such exciting items as a suite of patents for varying the valve timing in car engines. eBay just doesn’t have the same panache, now that I think about it. Though I don’t think you’d get bodily advertising and somebody’s virginity out of a regular auction. Now that I think about it, there’s a lot of things...
Microsoft is very superstitious, you know. They’re not going to have an Office 13. Ohh no, they’re going for Office 14 in the long term. More immediately important to you and I than this bit of sailors intuition however is the fact that they’re aiming to have mission-specific flavours of office in the future. For example an accountant might use a different version of Office to a sales rep. "We would call this role-based productivity. It’s a very powerful concept," said Simon Witts, corporate vice president for Microsoft’s Enterprise and Partner Group. "We want to sell you more versions of Office and charge you for it," says my inner cynic
Speaking of superstition however, perhaps Salesforce.com ought to adopt the mindset the Microsoft Office types apparently have. After their little crashing debacle a while back they released a self-congratulatory message pointing out their ultra-reliability in the past couple of months. Then the site crashed. Never ever, bloody ever, flippen ever tempt fate like that. Or else
Google has released v2 of their Firefox Toolbar, adding RSS feed integration with the Google Personalized Homepags and improving search functionality with previous queries, spell checking and suggestions. They’ve also, notably, broken with the IE6 version of the Toolbar, offering different features. "That’s because Firefox and IE users have different needs," said Google software engineer Justin Voskuhl. "Rest assured that we’re working to get the most popular features in both versions." I’m pretty sure resting assured breaks some sort of superstitious taboo... is Google still up ?
Another security hole has been found in IE. Please repeat that sentence in your mind using the most boring voice possible. I suppose it’s kind of tradition that I tell you what the bug is ? It’s a Phishing one, which exists because of an error in the way the Microsoft Web browser loads Web pages and Macromedia Flash animations, leading Phishing sites to look more legitimate. In what some might consider to be a publicity stunt, and others Round 2, Lucent is suing Microsoft on the grounds that the Xbox 360’s MPEG 2 decoder breaks their patents. (Day for patents, isn’t it ?) This isn’t the first time that Lucent has sued Microsoft over this, but their previous case was ruled in favour of Microsoft due to a typographical error in the patent, and so the judge suggested at the time that they fix the error and try again. And so they shall, demanding that 360’s be pulled from shop shelves. Unlikely to happen, but there is the possibility of a nice fat out of court settlement and plenty of free PR. Cue withered voice and "In my day, when we sued people..."
And finally, 24 percent of the population is sad and will probably be weeded out through Darwinian principals as they walk under cars and over cliffs. This the news from a recent study which suggests that 24 percent of mobile phone users believe that they absolutely must answer any calls under any circumstances, be they eating or crossing the road. Maybe they’re just superstitious about it, maybe they’re just obsessed. Whatever the reason, I was nearly killed by an idiot driving with his mobile phone in one hand the other day and would kindly like to suggest that if you are of said mindset, yes life may be too short not to get on that call with Lucy from accounts, but no need to shorten my life into the bargain. Lunatics
Coming up today we have more on internet security and storage. Enjoy yourselves.