Google Offers Free $70 Software
Forty months ago, Sun and Microsoft buried the hatchets (the same ones they'd
been hurling at each other's skulls). As part of a broad agreement, Microsoft
promised it wouldn't sue Sun for any StarOffice patent or copyright infringement.
Little did Microsoft know that Google would use this deal against it. Last
week, Google announced that it's giving
away StarOffice, which ordinarily retails for $70 bucks.
Now, before you get too excited, keep in mind that the paid version includes
support. With the Google version, you're pretty much on your own. If you look
at it that way, it's nearly the same as simply downloading OpenOffice, which
is also free.
While some critics contend that this is a major challenge to Microsoft Office,
it's simply a marketing/distribution deal. And since the Google home page is
so sparse, I doubt most users will even know the software is available. If Google
really wants to unseat Office and Windows, it'll have to do a lot better than
What say you? Share your thoughts with other Redmond Report readers be e-mailing
me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
And check out our interview with Sun's Scott McNealy about the Microsoft deal
Solaris on Mainframes?
IBM and Sun have reached
a major agreement that seems aimed at thwarting Hewlett-Packard. The first
part of the deal -- calling for Solaris to run on IBM Intel-based servers --
sounds a little silly: Solaris has run on Intel for years.
But plans to port Solaris to IBM Big Iron is a whole 'nuther story. This is
potentially a very big deal. As servers proliferate, there's not just management
complexity but huge electric bills, as well.
One approach to consolidate these servers is virtualization. Another is to
run apps on bigger servers, and they don't come any bigger than a mainframe
Have you looked at rationalizing your infrastructure, and are mainframes making
a comeback? Have any of you looked at Microsoft's Infrastructure Optimization
model and, if so, what do you think of it? Let us all know by writing email@example.com.
A Service-Oriented Architected House
When most of us think of architecting a house, we imagine room shapes, door
openings and roof lines. Peter Rhys Jenkins thinks of software -- in this case,
At IBM's recent SHARE conference, Jenkins, an IBM employee, described
his SOA-based house -- a house three years in the making. This fully automated,
12,000 square-foot abode includes a system that detects (and eliminates with
extreme prejudice) mice in the barn and -- through RFID tags stuck in family
members' shoes -- makes sure that only friendlies are let into the house.
To me, this is like a car with too many options. Instead of driving, you spend
all your time and money fixing seat warmers, power windows, air conditioning
and your kids' stupid DVD players!
Admin Tool Goes Open Source
Script Start, an automation tool that focuses largely on log-in scripts, is
The tool from Georgia-based Entrigue Systems has a graphical interface and
can "map drives, install printers, configure Outlook profiles, modify environment
variables, adjust Internet proxy settings [and] configure RDP connections,"
the company's Web site explains. Hmm, sounds a bit like our friends from ScriptLogic!
Going open source doesn't mean Entrigue has given up on capitalism. The higher-end
version that includes product support will be sold for $990 for each domain
Doug Barney is editor in chief of Redmond magazine and the VP, editorial director of Redmond Media Group.