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Doug's Mailbag: Web Secrecy, Unplugging, Windows Mobile Thoughts

Here are some reader thoughts on Google's Eric Schmidt's comments on Web anonymity:

This is definitely a stake in the ground. The Internet has to move towards identification of all entities which transact information through it. This is not unlike anything else. You can't broadcast a television or radio message, or publish a book without accountability. There is always an option for those who, like Thomas Paine, can publish something anonymously. But, by and large, we cannot move forward. Accountability will allow the Web to move forward into the next echelon of improved service in terms of finding reliable information we can use, engaging in successful business efforts and cooperative communications.

"Anonymous people on the internet can do bad things." They can do bad things in person too. Does that mean we should all have GPS trackers embedded in our bodies by the government on the day we are born?

Concerning Google drones: I wonder if it's illegal to shoot them down. Or send up my own drone and do battle with it.

A reader experiences the joy of unplugging from the real world, even for just a short period of time:

I can certainly relate to your recent article in Redmond magazine regarding your July trip to the Cape. I am a small business owner of an IT Services company (Wincourse Technologies) just outside of Charlotte, N.C. and very much have the same issue. Whether we are out to dinner, movie theatre with the kids or even poolside, my Blackberry is always nearby.

That is until this past weekend. My wife had a girls' weekend planned, so it was a perfect opportunity for the boys (seven and 11) to get away for a well-needed boys' weekend. Knowing work always needed to be a cell tower away, I brought my Blackberry, netbook and mobile GSM card. I had great reservations, however, about anything working since our getaway was smack in the middle of the mountainous terrain of Virginia's Jefferson National Forest. Just in case, I set my Out Of Office Reply with hopes users would contact our support department instead of me. Luck would have it, of course, request after request came in requiring my attention. Nature, however, proved to be a great blessing in that it was able to delay all messages for several hours at a time, making my responses very untimely. Finally, the battery, tired of searching for signals all day, dried up and died. This was my opportunity to pack the thing away and finally enjoy the short vacation.

Thanks for the article Doug.

One reader thinks Microsoft's mobile strategy is a dud:

Does Microsoft have a shot at the mobile phone market? NO.

Not just mobile phones, but lots of consumer IT exist in a VERY dynamic market.

Zune is great, but it came late to the MP3 party.

Competitors are already out there doing what Microsoft said (six months ago) its product would do when it gets released (six months from now). Microsoft's time from announcement to product release is too long.

Microsoft doesn't have the "root for the underdog" support that a certain fruit-named company does.

SteveJ markets iPhones as fun; SteveB talks more from a perspective of Microsoft's profits than a product's public appeal.

Share your thoughts with the editors of this newsletter! Write to [email protected]. Letters printed in this newsletter may be edited for length and clarity, and will be credited by first name only (we do NOT print last names or e-mail addresses).  

Posted by Doug Barney on 08/20/2010 at 1:18 PM


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