Symantec Tweaks the Giant's Nose
Vendors are always afraid, or should be, of getting too close to Microsoft.
One fear is that Redmond will look at your technology, perhaps even license
it, and then steal it. This is what Stac Electronics, makers of Stacker hard
drive compression, successfully sued Microsoft over, and now Symantec is doing
the same. Symantec says that Microsoft ripped
from Veritas' (now owned by Symantec) Volume Manager
and is adding these items to Vista and other tools.
An AMD Breakthrough
After years of losing billions and simply cloning Intel chips, AMD has really
broken out. Its processors are fast and cheap, it made Intel look like a fool
in the 64-bit world, and every hardware maker worth its salt is using AMD for
at least some systems. For some crazy reason, Dell held back, acting more loyal
to Intel than Andy Grove and Gordon Moore put together. But it has seen the
light and finally will
use AMD for some high-end servers. Maybe the hipsters at Alienware (Dell
is buying it) got to the fuddy duddies at Dell: Alienware's hottest gaming
machines use AMD!
Can a Company with 60,000 Employees Be Nimble?
Critics have had a field day calling Microsoft too big and slow moving to keep
up with the Internet (its stock is also small and slow moving, but that's
another story). Larger and larger apps and OSes that never meet ship dates only
add to that perception.
When Vista fell apart and had to be rebuilt from scratch, Redmond execs decided
something needed to be done. It restructured and fundamentally (we hope) changed
the way it creates software. New Windows chief and Jim Allchin replacement Kevin
Johnson says that eight months into the new system, Microsoft
is once again a lean, mean, code-writing machine. The biggest tech shift
has come at the behest of CTO Ray Ozzie, who is pushing Microsoft to reinvent
itself around Web services and Software as a Service (which I think are the
exact same thing -- tell me where I'm wrong at firstname.lastname@example.org.).
Anti-Spam Turned Spam Service Shut Down
Blue Security's anti-spam service sounded like a good idea at the time.
Users submitted addresses to be put on an anti-spam list, just like the highly
effective Do Not Call List that lets me eat dinner in peace (although I no longer
get to torment telemarketers with fake Spanish accents and my Tourette's).
But after spammers cracked the Blue Security code, the company decided to shut
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Microsoft Swallows a Whale -- Swims Deeper into Security
Microsoft sent some minor shock waves through the security community with its
plans to buy Whale Communications, which makes a range of Web-layer, VPN
and SSL firewalls. While this could be a perfect complement to ISA Server, what
about all those great companies that build firewall appliances based on ISA?
How are they supposed to compete with Redmond itself?
Doug Barney is editor in chief of Redmond magazine and the VP, editorial director of Redmond Media Group.