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Microsoft Wins Industry Standard Status for Office 281

everphilski writes "The International Herald-Tribune reports that Microsoft has won industry standard status for Office. EMCA International, a group of hardware and software makers based in Geneva, approved the MS file formats with only one dissenting vote - IBM. IBM backs the OpenDocument standard, which was approved by the ISO in May of this year." From the article: "Bob Sutor, IBM's vice president for open source and standards, called Microsoft's Office formats technically unwieldy - requiring software developers to absorb 6,000 pages of specifications, compared with 700 pages for OpenDocument. 'The practical effect is the only people who are going to be in a position to implement Microsoft's specifications are Microsoft,' Sutor said."

Patches For Pine Going Away 177

md8mart writes to let us know about the imminent shutdown of the site that distributes Pine patches. From the RSS feed of Patches for Pine we read the following bad news for all Pine users: "The Department of Mathematics of the University of Washington will close the account that hosts my Patches for Pine site. I would like to thank the Department of Mathematics for having hosted this site for so many years. I do not have current plans to move this site, but this site will disappear on December 15, 2006. Thank you to everyone who supported me by positive feedback and encouragement to do this work through the years. I will update this information as it becomes available."

NASA Making Plans To Save the Earth 226

aluminumangel writes, "Taking a page out of a Michael Bay movie, NASA is considering a manned mission to land on an asteroid, 'poke one with a stick,' and see how feasible it would be to deflect it from its course. Obviously, the application would be valuable in a doomsday situation and hopefully could keep us from going wherever the dinosaurs went." The article makes oblique reference to another goal such a mission could serve: giving us something to do in space, something to engage the paying public, between the time we return to the Moon and the time we get to Mars.

Comment It's still 2006, right? (Score 5, Informative) 81

As the headline points out, this was demoed at SIGGRAPH 1999. Umm, maybe someone could tell me why Slashdot is featuring news from 7 years ago on the front page. Igarashi's work was novel at the time (in fact, he won the Significant New Researcher Award at this year's SIGGRAPH partly because of it), but let's remember that it's 2006 and a lot has been done in the world of sketch based interfaces. SmoothSketch3D is just one example from this year alone.

Mumbai Bombings Give Outsourcing Community Pause 248

theodp writes "eWeek reports that the big fear of offshore outsourcing customers has become a reality: a major bombing attack in an outsourcing hub. In the wake of the attack, companies are considering their resources and preparedness. Despite understandable fears, people on the ground don't seem to think these latest attacks will have a long-term effect on the growth of India's tech sector." From the article: "The terrorist attack in Mumbai--and conflict between Israel and Lebanon for that matter--raise a series of questions for companies sourcing technology globally. Do you know the disaster recovery plans of your offshore services provider? Are their plans integrated with yours? And how prepared are these providers? "

Run Windows Applications Natively in OS X? 521

mcho writes "Unlike other speculators, who get no spam, Robert X. Cringely offers an intriguing reason behind Apple's recent strategy of Boot Camp. From the article: 'I believe that Apple will offer Windows Vista as an option for those big customers who demand it, but I also believe that Apple will offer in OS X 10.5 the ability to run native Windows XP applications with no copy of XP installed on the machine at all. This will be accomplished not by using compatibility middleware like Wine, but rather by Apple implementing the Windows API directly in OS X 10.5.'

Two Unofficial IE Patches Block Attacks 233

Pentrex writes "eWeek reports that two well-respected Internet security companies (eEye and Determina) have released unofficial patches to correct the vulnerability being exploited to load spyware, bots and Trojan downloaders on Windows machines. Microsoft isn't sanctioning the third-party patches, which include source code for review. As always, the advice is to weigh the risks before opting for an unofficial hotfix."

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