Licensing Simplified -- Now Only Insanely Complex
Microsoft has taken its lumps for a licensing program that some believe is
purposely complex. Taking those shots to heart, Microsoft recently simplified
focusing particularly on Open Value, which is aimed at small
and medium-sized businesses. The new approach will help international companies,
as it eliminates many country-by-country differences.
Anything to simplify licensing is a good thing, but much more can and should
be done—this isn’t quantum physics! I’m not sure if Microsoft
will ever address the biggest customer beef—that its licenses simply cost
Let’s Get Ready To Patch!
Earlier this week Microsoft released
three critical patches repairing Microsoft Word and the recently revealed
JVIEW Profiler vulnerability. Redmond magazine News Editor Scott Bekker was
nice enough to gather links to the bulletins, which your patching gurus should
It Wasn’t Me
The discovery of lewd mini-games in the video game Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas
has stirred a hornets’ nest of controversy,
and initial theories blamed the game’s programmers. But developer Rockstar
Games has an alternate theory—that hackers broke in and embedded the racy
new scenes. I’m pretty amazed that hackers could break into an internal
system and add code to a game without the vendor ever knowing. Maybe the security
team was too busy playing Xbox.
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Microsoft Directory Reaches Out
Microsoft is helping to make Active Directory a more robust system for linking
companies to other companies. The notion is a federated directory, where a manufacturer,
let’s say, could communicate with suppliers and partners almost as if
they were internal employees because they’re fully recognized by the directory.
Microsoft is doing its part with its new Active
Directory Federation Services (ADFS), and ISV partners, like Vintela, are
showing support for the architecture.
Microsoft is also working on a new identity system dubbed InfoCard which is
similar to single sign-on in that it creates a single identity to represent
a mix of credentials.
The Mac, It Lives
Apple’s sales and profits are way
up, and it’s not just the little iPod—Mac sales are up some
30 percent. The two are actually related. More iPod money means a healthier
Apple and more consumer confidence. And the cool factor of the iPod doesn’t
hurt Mac sales either. Is it any wonder that Microsoft wants a chunk, a large
chunk, of the digital music player market?
Half a decade ago I predicted the utter death of the Mac—after all, OS/2,
the Amiga, Next, and everything else under the sun had already died under the
thumb of Windows. It was then I realized Steve Jobs is far smarter in his sleep
than I’ll ever be.
Doug Barney is editor in chief of Redmond magazine and the VP, editorial director of Redmond Media Group.