Another Manic Patch Day

Microsoft dropped a hefty patch load yesterday with 49 platform-specific patches addressing a dozen vulnerabilities of varying intensities. Three of the problems are considered critical, which means that IT pros best get steppin'.

The patches and vulnerability descriptions are contained in 10 security bulletins, required reading for those that want to protect their clients, servers and jobs.

Freedom Lovers Bash Bill
The Web is awash with news that Microsoft MSN is censoring bloggers in communist China who use the MSN service. Apparently, key words such as freedom, along with sexual content, are rejected with a terse warning. The implication is that Microsoft is somehow wrong, and rolling over and acquiescing to unreasonable communist demands. Gimmee a break. China, as a sovereign nation, has rules and laws that Microsoft is simply respecting.

Keep in mind that Microsoft, through the millions of legal and purloined copies of its operating systems, is giving the Chinese access to the Web, and a voice. Censorship can't keep them down forever.

Taking on Photoshop
Microsoft hopes to outdo Photoshop with Acrylic, its new vector-based graphic program acquired from a Hong Kong software house. I, for one, would love to see some stiff Photoshop competition, as it'll keep Adobe on its toes. Microsoft is also testing a new format to bump aside PDF. Hmm, wonder where that idea came from...

An Acrylic beta is now available here.

Genius or Wack Job -- You Make the Call
Robert X. Cringely has a provocative view of the Apple/Intel deal. Actually the author was one of the original "Cringely"s from InfoWorld who left and won the right to keep his fake name. InfoWorld still has its own Cringely, so all told there’ve been 10 total!

In any event, the Cringely in question believes that the deal is a plot between Intel, who now hates Microsoft (his words, not mine), and Steve Jobs to kick Microsoft out of the PC market with lower-cost Macs. Oh, and HP will sell Mac clones and sell 'em like hot cakes.

Read and decide for yourself.

Biting the Hand
Microsoft employee Gretchen Ledgard publicly bit the hand that feeds her in a blog that called Microsoft managers "spoiled whiners." In an ultimately minor story broken by News.com, Ledgard apologized and managed to hold onto her job.

About the Author

Doug Barney is editor in chief of Redmond magazine and the VP, editorial director of Redmond Media Group.

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