twitter writes "The Vista Death Watch is PC Magazine's most popular column. That is just one of many items in Dvorak's review of yet another 'disappointing' year in Technology. 'I was not a fan of 2007. It was another crappy tech year--just the latest in a string of bad years dating back to 2000. Let's see some of the highlights and lowlights in no particular order ... The whopper for Intel, though, was its Viiv initiative, which was a dog from the get-go and was dropped--finally. Somewhere along the way, Intel bought into the Silicon Valley crock that CPUs were not important any more. What a laugh. Luckily for the company, it refocused on processor chips and found itself in the driver's seat once again. Of course, Intel will fall off the path again, of that you can be sure.'"
Bergkamp10 writes "State antitrust regulators have dismissed companies such as Google and Mozilla Corp, and software technologies such as AJAX and SaaS as "piddling players that pose no threat to Microsoft's monopoly in the operating system and browser markets". According to the report ten US states, including California, New York and the District of Columbia have called for an extension of monitoring of Microsoft's business practices until November 2012. They claim that little has changed in the OS and browser spaces since the 2002 antitrust case ruled against Microsoft. In their most recent brief, the states countered Microsoft's contention that Web-based companies — Google, Salesforce.com, Yahoo, eBay and others — and new Web-centric technologies constitute what Microsoft dubbed a "competitive alternative to Windows." Not even close, said the states, claiming that while these companies' products provide functionality for users they still rely on Operating Systems and browsers — the two spaces where Microsoft dominates. Experts were apparently even more damning, claiming competition in the market has not been restored since 2002 and that the collective powers of Google, Firefox and Web 2.0 are about as effective as a one legged man in a butt-kicking contest when it comes to unsettling Microsoft's monopoly of the market."
boaz112358 writes "Mark Cuban, Dallas Mavericks owner, HDNet CEO, and noted gadfly is publishing on his blog that Comcast and other ISPs should block all P2P traffic, because as he says, "As a consumer, I want my internet experience to be as fast as possible. The last thing I want slowing my internet service down are P2P freeloaders." He complains that commercial content distributors instead of paying for their own bandwidth, are leeching off consumers who are paying for the bandwidth. As an alternative distribution method (at least for audio and video), he suggests Google video."
Mortimer.CA writes "As discussed on Slashdot previously, there is a proposal to remove leap seconds from UTC (nee 'Greenwich' time). It will be put to a vote to ITU member states during 2008, and if 70% agree, the leap second will be eliminated by 2013. There is some debate as to whether this change is a good or bad idea. The proposal calls for a 'leap-hour' in about 600 years, which nobody seems to believe is a good idea. One philosophical point opponents make is that the 'official' time on Earth should match the time of the sun and heavens."
Tuoqui writes "With all the focus on the infamous hexadecimal number, people may be ignoring a bigger weakness in the AACS armor, which emerged two weeks ago. Some hackers have figured out how to crack AACS in a way that cannot be defeated, even by revoking all the keys in circulation."
diegocgteleline.es writes "Linus Torvalds has chimed in on the recently flamed-up (again) micro vs monolithic kernel, but this time with an interesting and unexpected point of view. From the article: 'The real issue, and it's really fundamental, is the issue of sharing address spaces. Nothing else really matters. Everything else ends up flowing from that fundamental question: do you share the address space with the caller or put in slightly different terms: can the callee look at and change the callers state as if it were its own (and the other way around)?'"
Ticron asks: "Like most of you, my job and lifestyle revolves around drinking lots and lots of caffeine - usually in the form of soda. I've been trying to cut back on my sugar intake lately, and am interested in what some of you drink that isn't loaded down with the sweet stuff. Diet drinks have little to no flavor, and fruit punches have almost (sometimes more!) sugar than sodas themselves. Is there anything out there that maintains the convenience of a canned drink, but without all the sugar?"
TechnoGuyRob writes "BBC News is reporting that the Bush administration has recently stepped up its measures against child pornography. From the article 'Sadly, the internet age has created a vicious cycle in which child pornography continually becomes more widespread, more graphic, more sadistic, using younger and younger children. [...] Mr. Gonzales also said that he is investigating ways to ensure that ISPs retain records of a user's web activities to track down offenders.'"
WebHostingGuy writes "A patent application filed with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office says researchers of the Netherland-based consumer electronics company have created a technology that could let broadcasters freeze a channel during a commercial, so viewers wouldn't be able to avoid it. Philips acknowledged that this technology might not sit well with consumers and suggested in its patent filing that consumers be allowed to avoid the feature if they paid broadcasters a fee."
McSnarf writes "It's not Windows. It's not distro wars. Sometimes it's just the arrogant attitude that keeps people from switching from Windows. 'As I spoke to newbies, one Windows user who wanted to learn about Linux shared the encouraging and constructive note (not) he received from one of the project members. The responding note read: "Hi jackass, RTFM and stop wasting our time trying to help you children learn.""
Bender writes "How good is Intel's Core Duo mobile processor? Good enough that Apple chose to put it in the iMac, and good enough that Intel chose to base its next generation microprocessor architecture on it. But is it already Intel's best CPU? The Tech Report has managed to snag a micro-ATX motherboard for this processor and compared the Core Duo directly to a range of mobile and desktop CPUs from AMD and Intel, including the Athlon 64 X2 and the Pentium Extreme Edition. The results are surprising. Not only is the Core Duo's performance per watt better than the rest, but they conclude that its 'outright performance is easily superior to Intel's supposed flagship desktop processor, the Pentium Extreme Edition 965.'"
An anonymous reader writes "C|Net is reporting on a protestation by Dell's CTO, Kevin Kettler, who says quite loudly that they are not Microsoft and Intel's puppet." From the article: "Essentially, Kettler argued, Dell was responsible for selecting, if not necessarily developing, many of the technologies in today's desktop computers and servers. Among standards for which he said Dell deserves credit are 802.11 wireless networking, PCI Express communications technology and 64-bit extensions to Intel's x86 line of processors."
theodp writes "Just in case Microsoft bashers don't have enough ammo, Robert X. Cringely has a couple of interesting tales in this week's column. The first explains how Bill Gates used Paul Allen's moonlighting at MITS to justify awarding himself 64% of Microsoft's stock vs. Allen's 36% (and Gates' failure to adjust the shares after he accepted a $10/hour part-time MITS job). The second heart-warming tale concerns a conversation Allen reportedly overheard late one night (as he was finishing up DOS 2.0) between Gates and Steve Ballmer discussing how to get Allen's Microsoft stock back if the Hodgkins disease Allen was battling killed him. Yikes."
An anonymous reader writes "Balthasar has been awarded a patent on "Methods, systems, and processes for the design and creation of rich-media applications via the internet" ( USPO 7,000,180). In an article at news.com the company claims that "The patent covers all rich-media technology implementations including Flash, Flex, Java, AJAX and XAML and all device footprints which access rich-media Internet applications including desktops, mobile devices, set-top boxes and video game consoles". The patent was filed on 9 February 2001, five years after the original Flash application, FutureWave Splash, was introduced in May 1996."
Here's a link to the mentioned talk: Optimizing GNOME