IE Still the Dominant Browser
- By Peter Varhol
In case you needed any reminders, our favorite browser is still
, according to Net Applications Inc., a marketing company
that tracks visitors to approximately 40,000 Web sites.
reports that in December, IE commanded a 76 percent share of browser visits,
with Mozilla's Firefox in second place at 17 percent. Apple's Safari was third
with almost 6 percent followed by Netscape (now at the end
of its life) and Opera, each with less than 1 percent.
While the browser may seem like a utility -- we just assume it works and don't
pay much attention to it -- I still occasionally get IE crashes and incorrect
page rendering. I keep Firefox on my systems for just such occasions.
Which browser do you use? Do you have any issues that cause you to switch browsers?
Send your browser tales to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Macworld Expo This Week
Unlike Microsoft, which spreads its new product announcements throughout the
year, the blockbuster introductions from Apple typically come during the Macworld
Expo conference and trade show, being held this week in San Francisco. This
was the same venue that brought us the first look at the iPhone a year ago.
Today, Steve Jobs will stand in front of the assembled crowd in his usual black
turtleneck sweater and jeans and make
the announcement that will likely drive sales for the company in the coming
year. While most acknowledge that he'll have a difficult time matching the buzz
of the iPhone, speculation is that this year's announcement will concern a family
of ultra-thin MacBooks.
Because of the company's design achievements and its sense of the dramatic,
Apple has been leading the way in defining the future at the junction of IT
and consumer electronics. Forward-thinking IT professionals would do well to
Have you been to a recent Macworld? Are there any innovations you expect to
see move from the show floor to the IT stable? Let me know at email@example.com.
IBM Tops Patent Assignees for 2007
For the 15th year in a row, IBM leads the list of the year's patent assignees,
having been awarded 3,148
patents for 2007, according to an analysis done by IFI Patent Intelligence.
Samsung Electronics came in second with 2,725 patents awarded, while Intel
(with 1,865 patents) and Microsoft (with 1,637) were fifth and sixth, respectively.
No other primarily software companies were ranked in the top 25. Hewlett-Packard
was 10th with 1,470 patents.
Interestingly, a total of 157,284 patents were awarded in 2007. However, the
U.S. Patent and Trademark Office notes that
there's still a backlog of 1,112,517 patent applications pending at the end
of the year. At this rate, it may take a while to get through that list.
Are patents still relevant in this day and age, or do they simply kill innovation?
Do you want to see a change in the patent process? Send your thoughts to firstname.lastname@example.org.
VMware Moves Into Application Virtualization
VMware today announced the acquisition
of Thinstall, a privately held company headquartered in San Francisco that's
a leader in application virtualization.
Application virtualization refers to the ability to virtualize individual applications
running on an operating system. This technology makes it possible to keep the
OS relatively clean, while also enabling the installation and execution of multiple
versions of an application. Application virtualization can also be used to make
applications available to individual users on demand.
I looked at the Thinstall solution, productized by LANDesk, along with the
Altiris (now a part of Symantec) Software Virtualization Solution in the September
2007 issue of Redmond magazine. While both worked well, my take was
that Altiris SVS, available free for personal use, was more elegant and mature.
Have you tried application virtualization yet? What's your take? Let me know
Mailbag: IM Troubles
MSN has been dubbed 2007's
"most-hacked" instant messaging client by Facetime Communications.
One reader shares his experience with IM security -- or lack thereof:
I don't like IM products full stop. The problem with the MS offering is
that not only does it install with Outlook Express, it is opened by Outlook
Express when you start that application. I solved that problem by renaming
the IM application using the theory that Outlook Express cannot open what
it cannot find and have been free of that little application ever since.
A friend of mine was the victim of a malware attack probably due to MSN
Messenger or an online gaming site, called Medici. It killed the AV scanner
and also locked the user out of the control panel. I finally found two entries
starting it in the registry.
Got something to add? Let us have it! Leave a comment below or send an e-mail
Peter Varhol is the executive editor,
reviews of Redmond magazine and has more than 20 years of experience as a software
developer, software product manager and technology writer. He has graduate degrees
in computer science and mathematics, and has taught both subjects at the university