1. “Microsoft, Novell Team in Linux Deal,”
Hell didn’t quite freeze over, but times sure have changed. Only five years ago, Steve Ballmer likened the open-source Linux operating system to a cancer and a virus, but this week the Microsoft chief executive officer announced a tie-up with Novell whereby Microsoft will support Novell’s Suse Linux on machines that also run Microsoft’s Windows operating system. Ballmer said the move was all about bridging the gulf between open-source and proprietary software, though he stressed that Microsoft hasn’t become a huge Linux proponent overnight and still wants users to buy its Windows OS instead.
2. “Microsoft, Zend Boost PHP for Windows,”
And the open-source thaw continues with Microsoft also teaming up with Zend Technologies to encourage user adoption of Zend’s PHP open-source Web scripting language on Microsoft’s Windows Server platform. The two companies are collaborating to fix previous performance issues that deterred organizations from running PHP on Windows Server. At the heart of their development work is FastCGI, a new interface between PHP and Microsoft’s Internet Information Server. Both vendors are also mulling over whether to develop integration between PHP and Microsoft’s Visual Studio development platform.
3. “Will Oracle’s ‘Unbreakable Linux’ Break the OS?”Computerworld, 10/31
Now that the dust has settled from last week’s major upset in the open-source world, industry watchers are considering the ramifications of Oracle’s move to offer full enterprise support for Red Hat Linux, which Oracle is calling “Unbreakable Linux.” Some experts believe Oracle’s cloning of the source code of Red Hat Enterprise Linux is likely to cause major problems, as the Oracle and Red Hat versions diverge from each other, and Oracle ends up effectively creating its own separate Linux distribution.
4. “Former CA CEO Sanjay Kumar Gets 12 Years In Prison,”Computerworld, 11/2
Aiming to send a strong message to corporate America that accounting scandals won’t be tolerated, a judge sentenced Sanjay Kumar, the former CEO of software vendor Computer Associates (now known as CA), to 12 years’ jail time and a US$8 million fine. Kumar will be free on bond until the judge determines restitution to the victims of the crime, the investors in the company who lost more than US$400 million. The FBI characterizes Kumar as presiding over one of the largest accounting fraud schemes on record involving misstatements of US$2.2 billion of Computer Associates’ revenue.
5. “Voters in Fla., Texas Complain of E-Voting Glitches,”Computerworld, 11/1
As the United States gears up for Tuesday’s nationwide Election Day, early voters in Florida and Texas have reportedly experienced problems in using electronic voting machines. One alleged issue was vote flipping, whereby the machine registered a different candidate from the one chosen by the voter. Officials have mostly denied any problems with the e-voting machines, adding that they have measures in place to quickly respond should any glitches occur next week. Critics of e-voting recommend that voters be extra vigilant when using the machines to ensure that the vote they cast is properly recorded.
6. “Laptop Vendors Seek Better Battery Standard,”PC World, 10/30
Nothing tends to unite competitors more than a shared crisis. Reeling from a series of millions of battery recalls after a handful of laptops around the world short-circuited and caught fire, notebook vendors such as Dell and Lenovo and battery manufacturers are now presenting something of a united front. The companies announced they’re working on a standard aimed at making all forms of rechargeable lithium-ion battery cells safer. They hope to announce the standard covering process requirements, quality control and assurance by the middle of June next year.
7. “Google Buys JotSpot, Offers Free Wiki Pages,”Macworld, 10/31
Looking to fill gaps in its technologies, the search giant this week scooped up three-year-old JotSpot, a developer of wiki technology for collaborative websites. The companies didn’t comment on the financial details of the deal nor exactly how Google plans to use JotSpot. However, they did make the JotSpot technology free of charge.
8. “Pa. Water-System Network Hacked,”CIO.com, 11/1
Hackers were able to install a virus and spyware in the computer systems of a Harrisburg, Pa., water treatment plant after breaking into an employee’s laptop over the Web. The FBI is investigating the attack, which occurred early last month, and which the agency believes originated outside the United States and was more of a case of hackers trying to maliciously use the plant’s computers rather than an attempt to compromise the water system itself.
9. “Sun Finalizes Open-Source Java Plans,”CIO.com, 11/1
After pledging to make its core Java technology freely available back in May, Sun is finally drawing closer to a release date that will likely occur later this month. Once open-source versions of its Java SE and Java ME offerings are available, the vendor will have made about 70 percent of its software freely available. Sun plans to open-source the remaining 30 percent—a mix of its service-oriented architecture suite and identity-management software—within the next 12 months.
10. “Vista, Office 2007 Coming Later this Month,”PC World, 11/1.
Microsoft has named a date for the launch of its long-awaited Windows Vista client operating system and its Office 2007 desktop applications suite. The vendor will unveil the two core products along with the latest version of its Exchange Server 2007 Nov. 30 at the Nasdaq Stock Market in New York City. Microsoft is hoping to encourage its customers to deploy Vista and Office 2007 together rather than as separate implementations.
-China Martens, IDG News Service (Boston Bureau)
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