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Microsoft, Mozilla and Google Ban Malaysian Intermediate CA 80

Orome1 writes "Microsoft, Mozilla and Google have announced that they are revoking trust in Malaysia-based DigiCert, an intermediate certificate authority authorized by well-known CA Entrust, following the issuing of 22 certificates with weak keys, lacking in usage extensions and revocation information. 'There is no indication that any certificates were issued fraudulently, however, these weak keys have allowed some of the certificates to be compromised,' wrote Jerry Bryant of Microsoft's Trustworthy Computing."
It's funny.  Laugh.

What's Your Favorite Monster? 245

Pickens writes "Mankind has always had a fascination with monsters, and mythologies from around the world include stories of strange and terrifying creatures. Examples include the half-bull, half-human Minotaur of Greek myths, the living clay Golem of Jewish traditions, British elves and Chinese dragons. Live Science has an interesting photo essay on their ten favorite monsters that may have a basis in real life. Their rogue's gallery includes the Ogopogo, a mysterious monster in Canada's Lake Okanagan; the Chupacabra, that Latin Americans believe is the unholy result of secret US government experiments in the jungles of Puerto Rico; and the perennial favorite Bigfoot."

Facebook Beacon Privacy Issues Worse Than Previously Thought? 138

An anonymous reader writes "Further developments in the Facebook Beacon affair ... According to PC World, a Computer Associates researcher claims that Beacon, when installed on participating sites, is sending data about users' activity back to Facebook, even when a user is logged out of Facebook - despite Facebook's claims to the contrary."
Music

DRM 'Too Complicated' Says Gates 196

arbirk writes "BBC News is reporting on comments made by Bill Gates concerning DRM.. It seems he has got the point (DRM is bad for consumers), but that opinion differs widely from the approach taken by Microsoft on Zune and their other music related products. The comments were originally posted on Micro Persuasion. The article also has a take on Apple's DRM." From the BBC article: "Microsoft is one of the biggest exponents of DRM, which is used to protect music and video files on lots of different online services, including Napster and the Zune store. Blogger Michael Arrington, of Techcrunch.com, said Bill Gates' short-term advice for people wanting to transfer songs from one system to another was to 'buy a CD and rip it'. Most CDs do not have any copy protection and can be copied to a PC and to an MP3 player easily and, in the United States at least, legally."

Why Microsoft's Zune Scares Apple to the Core 574

BoredStiff writes "Computerworld has an article examining Microsoft's plans to launch a competitor to the Apple iPod, the wireless media player called Zune. The article lists five reasons why Apple may fear the Zune, and why it won't be as easily smacked down as the dozens of mp3 players before it have been. The Zune isn't just a music player, the article argues. Think of it as a portable, wireless, hardware version of MySpace. With the Zune, Microsoft is trying to launch a consumer media 'perfect storm.'" From the article: "Microsoft will make the movement of media between Windows, Soapbox and the Zune natural and seamless. The Zune interface is just like a miniature version of the Windows Media Center user interface and is very similar to some elements of Vista. Apple fans are overconfident in the iPod because Apple once commanded 92% of music player market share, a number that has since fallen to around 70%. About 30 million people own iPods. But Microsoft owns more than 90% of the worldwide operating systems market (compared with Apple's roughly 5%), representing some 300 million people. The company expects to have 200 million Vista users within two years."

Microsoft Launches the Zune 472

Doug-W writes to mention an Engadget post about Microsoft's launch of the Zune. From the article: "Not a lot of surprises in the specs department, but they've confirmed the basics we've known for a while, like WiFi, 30GB of HDD, built-in FM, a 3-inch screen and the basic music, pictures and video playback. They also finally let slip the screen res -- an unsurprising QVGA -- and some better news on the codec front: the Zune supports h.264, MP3, AAC and WMA. As for ballyhoo, wireless Zune-to-Zune sharing is where the real action is at, and it works pretty much like we've been hearing: you can share a full-length track with a friend, and they've got three times to listen to it over a three day period, after which they can flag the song for purchase on the Zune Marketplace -- unless they're an unlimited 'Zune Pass' subscriber, of course."

Xbox 360 HD-DVD Player Just for Movies 94

The Gamerscore blog, an official Microsoft news organ, lays to rest the rumours that the HD-DVD drive might be required to play future 360 games. According to them the new HD drive is solely intended to play movies, and will not be used to accesss game content. From the article: "Since announcing the Xbox 360 HD DVD Player accessory at E3 2006, we've been clear that it is designed exclusively for playing HD DVD movies. It will not play games on HD DVD. At this point, we haven't seen anything to suggest that next-gen DVD formats offer a better game experience than current DVD. What we do know is that these formats will bring added cost to game developers, disc manufacturing, and could even result in added costs and longer load times for the consumer, which would negatively impact the game experience." This is, of course, not to say another peripheral or future version of the console might require such a thing.

Microsoft Trumps Google, Yahoo! R&D Budgets 201

Rob writes to mention a Computer Business Review Online article on Microsoft's commitment to out-spend Google and Yahoo! on innovation in the coming year. From the article: "Microsoft Corp will spend over $1bn on R&D just in its MSN unit, for the fiscal year starting in July, chief executive Steve Ballmer told an audience of would-be advertising customers. The money, part of the surprise spending package that recently gave Microsoft's share price its biggest single-day drop in five years, comes as the company struggles to catch up to Yahoo! Inc and Google Inc in the search and online advertising market."

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