Become a fan of Slashdot on Facebook


Forgot your password?
Slashdot Deals: Cyber Monday Sale Extended! Courses ranging from coding to project management - all eLearning deals 20% off with coupon code "CYBERMONDAY20". ×

How To Get Around the Holes In IE9 Beta's Implementation of Canvas 111

mudimba writes "Microsoft has made grand announcements about how great their implementation of the HTML5 canvas specification is. However, while I was porting a large HTML5 application to work with IE9 beta I found that there are some key features missing. Workarounds are provided where possible. (Disclaimer: I am the author of the submitted article.)"

Windows 7 "Not Much Faster" Than Vista 821

PLSQL Guy writes "Tests of the Windows 7 Release Candidate in a PC World Test Center found that while Windows 7 was slightly faster on our WorldBench 6 suite, the differences may be barely noticeable to users. The PCs tested were slightly faster when running Windows 7, but in no case was the overall improvement greater than 5 percent, considered to be a threshold for when an actual performance change is noticeable to the average user. One of the major complaints about Windows Vista was the fact that it was consistently slower than Windows XP. If Windows 7 can't significantly improve that situation, what chance does it have to convince people to move away from Windows XP?"

Office 2007 Fails OOXML Test With 122,000 Errors 430

I Don't Believe in Imaginary Property writes "Groklaw is reporting that some people have decided to compare the OOXML schema to actual Microsoft Office 2007 documents. It won't surprise you to know that Office 2007 failed miserably. If you go by the strict OOXML schema, you get a 17 MiB file containing approximately 122,000 errors, and 'somewhat less' with the transitional OOXML schema. Most of the problems reportedly relate to the serialization/deserialization code. How many other fast-tracked ISO standards have no conforming implementations?"

Microsoft Pulls Vista SP1 Update 268

1shooter writes " reports that Microsoft is withdrawing SP1 for Vista. Nick White, Microsoft product manager blogged 'We've heard a few reports about problems customers may be experiencing as a result of KB937287,' wrote White. 'Immediately after receiving reports of this error, we made the decision to temporarily suspend automatic distribution of the update to avoid further customer impact while we investigate possible causes.'"

Linux Has Better Windows Compatibility Than Vista 347

Several readers have written to tell us about one users rant in which he tells the story of being so frustrated with gaming on Windows Vista that he tried comparing gaming on Vista to that on Linux using Wine, with surprising results. "This post is clearly a bit biased. What shocked me though was how easy it was to find games that didn't run under Vista but did in Linux by using Wine or DOSBox. I'm not a huge gamer, so I don't have a huge collection of games to try out, but even still with just a few hours of frustrating work, I have been able to show that not only is Linux a reasonable alternative to Vista for gaming (XP is still king though), but also that Linux handles application failures more gracefully than Vista. Every game but Blackthorne crashed my Vista box, this didn't happen a single time under Linux."

Saving in OOXML Format Now Probably A Bad Idea 150

orlando writes "Much drama is unfolding prior to the OOXML Ballot Resolution Meeting in Geneva, currently schedule for the end of February. After that there's a subsequent 30 day period while countries can still change their vote. As a result, Bob Sutor is recommending that saving your documents in OOXML format right now is probably about the riskiest thing you can do, if you are concerned with long term interoperability. At this point nobody has the vaguest idea what OOXML will look like in February, or even whether it will be in any sort of stable condition by the end of March. 'While we are talking about interoperability, who else do you think is going to provide long term complete support for this already-dead OOXML format that Microsoft Office 2007 uses today? Interoperability means that other applications can process the files fully and not just products from Microsoft. I would even go so far as to go back to those few OOXML files you have already created and create .doc, .ppt, and .xls versions of them for future use, if you want to make sure you can read them and you don't want to commit yourself to Microsoft's products for the rest of their lives.'"

Microsoft to Spy on Employees 305

4T writes "Forget about monitoring your computers with spyware, now they're going to monitor the users as well! 'Microsoft is developing Big Brother-style software capable of remotely monitoring a worker's productivity, physical wellbeing and competence. The Times has seen a patent application filed by the company for a computer system that links workers to their computers via wireless sensors that measure their metabolism. The system would allow managers to monitor employees' performance by measuring their heart rate, body temperature, movement, facial expression and blood pressure. Unions said they fear that employees could be dismissed on the basis of a computer's assessment of their physiological state.'"

Paramount to Drop HD DVD? 470

zeromemory writes "The Financial Times reports that " Paramount is poised to drop its support of HD DVD after Warner Brothers' recent backing of Sony's Blu-ray technology, in a move that will sound the death knell of HD DVD and bring the home entertainment format war to a definitive end." According to the Times, Warner Brother's recent defection to Blu-Ray allowed Paramount to terminate their exclusive relationship with HD DVD. Universal Studios remains the only major studio to exclusively support the HD DVD format, though rumors have surfaced that their contract may also contain a termination provision similar to that exercised by Paramount."


Rob Weir has an interesting essay comparing the viciousness of RTF and OOXML: "The [document format standard] concerns of 2004 (or 1995 even) are very similar to the concerns of 2007... 'RTF is defined as whatever Word saves when you ask it to save as RTF.' This should sound familiar. OOXML is nothing more than the preferences of Microsoft Office. Whenever Word changes, OOXML will change. And if you are a user or competitor of Word, you will be the last one to hear about these changes. The coding of Office 14 a.k.a. Office 2009 is well underway. Beta releases are expected in early 2008. But are file format changes needed to accommodate the new features being discussed in Ecma? No. Are they being discussed in ISO? No. Are they being discussed anywhere publicly? No. By owning the 'standard' and developing it in secret, in an Ecma rubber-stamp process, Microsoft rigs the system so they can author an ISO standard with which they are effortlessly compatible, while at the same time ensuring that their products maintain an insurmountable head start in implementing these same standards. Is this how an open standard is developed?"
Data Storage

Windows Home Server Corrupts Files 459

crustymonkey points out a ComputerWorld article which says that "Microsoft Corp. has warned Windows Home Server users not to edit files stored on their backup systems with several of its programs, including Vista Photo Gallery and Office's OneNote and Outlook, as well as files generated by popular finance software such as Quicken and QuickBooks." Crustymonkey asks Don't back up your files to Windows Home Server, as recommended by Microsoft themselves? I'm not exactly sure what the point is in having a home server if you can't back up files on it."

Iran Builds Supercomputer From Banned AMD Parts 778

Stony Stevenson writes with the news that, despite a ban on US PC hardware, Iranian techs have built an enormously powerful supercomputer from 216 AMD processors. The Linux-cluster machine has a 'theoretical peak performance of 860 gig-flops'. "The disclosure, made in an undated posting on [the University of] Amirkabir's Web site, brought an immediate response Monday from AMD, which said it has never authorized shipments of products either directly or indirectly to Iran or any other embargoed country."

Users and Web Developers Vent Over IE7 528

Spinlock_1977 writes "ComputerWorld is running a story about developers frustration with IE 7, and Microsoft's upcoming plans (or lack thereof) for it. From the article, "But the most pointed comment came from someone labeled only as dk. You all continue to underestimate the dramatic spillover effect this poor developer experience has had and will continue to have on your other products and services. Let me drive this point home. I am a front-end programmer and a co-founder of a start-up. I can tell you categorically that my team won't download and play with Silverlight ... won't build a Live widget ... won't consider any Microsoft search or ad products in the future.""

Microsoft Windows 7 "Wishlist" Leaked 522

Cassius Corodes is one of many readers to point out that a recent "wishlist" of new Windows development features is floating around the net. This list was supposedly leaked from Microsoft and contains some of their key development features for the next version of Windows. Given that the next new Windows release is bound to be a long way off I would recommend seasoning this news with a hefty dose of sodium chloride.

"Of course power tools and alcohol don't mix. Everyone knows power tools aren't soluble in alcohol..." -- Crazy Nigel