Exchange 12 Reporting for Testing, Sir!

The latest beta (yeah, I'm supposed to be a dope like everyone else and call it a CTP) of Exchange 12 (is it still called that?) is in wider distribution, which means YOU have a decent shot at getting it, as long as you have a TechNet or MSDN subscription (and I ain't talking about the magazines!).

How tied into Exchange are you? Do you use it for basic e-mail transport so a switch to a better/cheaper/cooler product is no prob? Or is Exchange so tied into everything your shop does that ripping it out is like tearing out a lung? Give us the graphic details at dbarney@redmondmag.com.

Minor Mac Attack
I was excited when I heard that Apple had a new dual-core Mac Mini that started at six hundred smackers. I figured enough of us have monitors, keyboards and mice that we could have a pretty rippin' unit for six large. My next ill-conceived conclusion was that this could start a wave of home computer buying, as so many IT vets would leap at a slick home computer they don't have to regularly rebuild.

But $600 is for a single-core with a 60MB hard drive and read-only DVD? That ain't exactly muscle. The dual-core model starts at $800 -- not quite an impulse buy.

Still, at least Apple engineers are putting up a fight, while the marketing and PR departments are asleep at the PC wheel. Maybe Apple will succeed in the PC market without even trying. If they do, they can thank Microsoft for creating the frustration that makes the Mac so enticing. Me? I'm saving my Benjamins for a MacBook.

Microsoft can't let Apple hog all the hardware headlines, so it kinda of let it slip that it's working on a cool, new, super-small device it calls Origami. (Did I just fall for the trick of publicizing every new Microsoft code name? I guess I'm part of the problem.)

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More Self-Made Leaks of Unbuilt Microsoft Products
On rare occasions Microsoft complains about product leaks. Even more so, it holds customers and partners to some rigid NDAs while Redmond leaks like a quarter horse. Some leaks are entirely bald-faced, like this week's TechFest, where the company showed off some of the cooler and less obscure projects from Microsoft Research. This time around the star of the show was a foot-operated pointing device either designed for percussionists or to keep us all from carpal tunnel.

Microsoft Searches for Glory
In recent reports Microsoft promises that in six to12 months it will absolutely kick Google's search butt. In the meantime, Redmond is taking baby steps, and this week announced some new search tools such as an early rev of classified ads (I won't delete my Craigslist bookmark just yet) and a new local feature that seems aimed at Google Maps.

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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