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The Almighty Buck

Submission + - US Consumerism Poses Global Recession Threat (

Horar writes: "From the article: One of the world's leading economists has issued a scathing denunciation of American consumerism, saying overspending could lead to a "catastrophic" recession... He says the United States has a current account deficit of $US811 billion for last year, which means America is borrowing [more than two] billion a day from overseas.

What are the implications of this for the IT industry if there is such a recession? Alternatively, what would happen if rampant consumerism is brought under control? Isn't it that very consumerism that pushes the development of the devices and technologies which most slashdotters could not live without?"


Submission + - History repeating itself in Microsoft vs Apple DRM

lawman508 writes: Back in the early 80's, WinTel won the battle for the desktop by allowing anyone (who paid a fee), to deploy their own PCs. While Apple technology was arguably better, the sheer volume of WinTel PC vendors and software drew most users to that platform, leading to its eventual dominance.

Are we seeing the same thing happening today with the recently announced Microsoft PlayReady technology?

Microsoft PlayReady " is a new multimedia content access technology optimized to meet the needs of mobile operators and handset manufacturers for digital entertainment and commerce... technology will be available as a well-documented porting kit with source code, so it can be deployed on any mobile hardware or software platform, including low-end devices. Optimized implementations for several popular handset platforms will be available from PacketVideo in its software products for mobile phones

I think the key aspect of this announcement lies in the fact that Microsoft is allowing anyone to use it, on any device. As opposed to Apple, that only allows their DRM to run on the iTunes platform.

Are we seeing history repeat itself here?

Will the Microsoft Zune eventualy dominate over the Apple iPOD, not through "superior" technology, but purely on the virtue that so many vendors and developers will work with it?

Machines take me by surprise with great frequency. - Alan Turing