Saturday, July 21, 2007

The desktop -- time to say goodbye?

In the face of increasing market share are desktops doomed to niche status? I kind of doubt it.

Yes, more and more people are opting for notebooks and more corporate sales are of notebooks, as well. But if I had my choice, I'd work on a desktop more, not less. I like my laptop, but the smaller display and keyboard take their toll over long hours of working on it.

You can bet we are going to be talking about this one on Sunday.


Friday, July 20, 2007

Happy Friday Edition

First. There's a WOOT-OFF!!
Second. My Google reader shared items:

Third. TGIF! Have a great weekend!
Fourth. Join us Sunday for the live show!


Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Microsoft's Copy Protection Hacked Again

From CBS news:
(AP) Microsoft Corp. is once again on the defensive against hackers after the posting of a new program that gives average PC users tools to unlock copy-protected digital music and movies.

The latest version of the FairUse4M program, which can crack Microsoft's digital rights management system for Windows Media audio and video files, was published online late Friday. In the past year, Microsoft plugged holes exploited by two earlier versions of the program and filed a federal lawsuit against its anonymous authors. Microsoft dropped the lawsuit after failing to identify them.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Fighting Viruses in Vista Without Antivirus Programs

Here's an interesting article that takes on the bluster about whether or not Vista actually needs an anti-virus program protecting it. Not really anything surprising in it, but well told and understandable to anyone.


Adobe Flash exploit could log keystrokes

This one is really important if you have Flash enabled in your browser. Adobe has published patches for a total of 3 important vulnerabilities and you need to update your Flash Player right away!


Monday, July 16, 2007

Microsoft to offer code protection, validation to other software developers

Microsoft is making the tools and bits of software copy protection and activation (Similar to Windows activation) available to developers. At first glance, this looks like nothing more than a gift to hardworking developers, no matter how large or small their projects are.

But I fear MS has an agenda. They are already using relatively restrictive copy protection and activation schemes on their products and they have made no secret of the fact that they plan to push forward in this area. However; there is a customer outcry because of the inconvenience and mistakes in the process, and MS has to worry it might become a tidal wave of dissatisfaction leading to lost sales and hence revenue. (Other companies plan similar schemes; notably Adobe, thought these two are by no means the only ones.) So, the only way they can gain acceptance, or at least resignation, of customers to these schemes is to make ones like it so pervasive that there are few alternatives.

There's a lot at stake here.


Linux MPX Multi-touch Table May Become Free DIY Microsoft Surface One Day

Here's another project to make surface or touch computing mainstream. This one is a development of the X Windows system used on Linux and many Unices. It's worth reading. I'm now aware of 4 projects having to do with touch or surface computing besides Microsoft's heavily touted efforts. MS is definitely the leader in this space, but apparently the field is about to be crowded.

Beware of the optimism in this article. It's a bit much and so slightly unbalances the tone of things.


Sun Has Fixed Java Security Flaws

Sun Microsystems quietly slipped out an update to the JRE (Java Runtime Environment) and SDK (Software Development Kit) to address the flaws I posted about earlier.

The new version number is 6, update 2. Get it at the link above. The update has been issued for all applicable platforms.


How can you possibly test modern software fully?

Here is an interesting article from The Register's Developer's section. It will answer a lot of questions about how software is tested, should that sort of thing interest you.

I have to warn you that it is multiple pages long and, while well written and paced, it is probably more than most of you want to know about the subject,


OnComputers Radio show Podcast 07-15-07

This is the On Computers Radio show podcast for 07-15-07. You can listen live every Sunday from 10AM to 1PM Pacific thats 1PM to 4PM Eastern. If you prefer, you can download the same MP3 file here via ftp.