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Sunday, November 22
America Online is in talks to acquire Netscape
Communications in a stock swap and a buyout could be
announced this week, according to published reports. As
part of the deal, Sun Microsystems also could gain
control of Netscape's business software operations. If
completed, the deal would help both AOL and Sun compete
against Microsoft. The reports cautioned, however, that
the deal might collapse. Full story here.
Following a federal judge's ruling against
Microsoft this past week in Sun's lawsuit against it, the
giant will strip its Java virtual machine out of the
Internet Explorer Web browser for Macintosh and Unix,
according to a letter sent to IE licensees. Earlier,
Microsoft said that Windows 98 users were unaffected by
the decision, and that the company is "committed to
supporting Java for all our customers."
More info here.
READY FOR CHRISTMAS
Linux creator Linus Torvalds has released the
latest version of the OS kernel, but he isn't ready to
call it version 2.2 yet. There is still one serious bug
to be tested, but other than that the kernel is stable.
"The showstoppers are done," Torvalds said.
"It's obviously a matter of pride to lots of people
to try to make the .0 releases be as stable as humanly
the day: "Once a new technology rolls
over you, if you're not part of the steamroller, you're part of the
road." - Stewart Brand
Friday, November 20
Leading car-stereo manufacturers get behind a new radio
channel that will add a button alongside AM and FM on
dashboards everywhere. A satellite-radio company said
the other day its new deal with car-stereo manufacturers
could mean 100 new channels of music on dashboards. Full story here.
HOPED FOR IN '98, PERHAPS REALITY IN '99
There is tremendous pent-up demand for faster access to
the Internet and other IP-based data networks, including
remote access to corporate local area networks and
extended virtual private networks to support extranets
and intranets. Internetworking technology is developing
so rapidly that the bottleneck created by slow access is
that much more painfully obvious. Learn
HTML VIRUS WATCHDOG
While theoretically possible, HTML viruses poses
little danger to today's users, said Mike Nichols,
Internet Explorer manager for Microsoft Corp. "We
are extremely confident that this is nothing that users
should be worried about," he said. Find
out who's right here.
the day: "I am indeed rich, since my
income is superior to my expense, and my expense is equal to my
wishes." - Edward Gibbon
Thursday, November 19
HOW MUCH DID YOU PAY FOR
An economist hired by the
government testifies that Microsoft has hurt
consumers by keeping prices for its operating systems
above market levels.
The day in court here.
Microsoft today challenged the credibility of an IBM
executive, confronting him with evidence that his company
"colluded" with other industry giants to attack
Microsoft's Internet strategy. Full
In a major victory for civil libertarians, a
federal judge today issued a temporary restraining order
barring the government from enforcing the Child Online
Protection Act for ten days. While today's decision was
seen as a win for free speech advocates and a loss for
the U.S. government, it is by no means final. The case is
slated to get yet another hearing in early December.
Nevertheless, Web site owners who had worried that their
content would be illegal under the Child Online
Protection Act (COPA) are getting a brief reprieve. In
addition, the restraining order could extended to 20 days.
the day: "If a trainstation is where
the train stops, what's a workstation...?"
Wednesday, November 18
As Sun enjoys its victory in the federal lawsuit over the
Java programming language, developers are left to wonder
how the ruling will affect them. A federal judge
yesterday gave Microsoft 90 days to stop selling software--including
Windows 98 and Internet Explorer 4.0--that includes its
version of the Java technology and Windows-only
extensions to the Java language. Details
The ruling that Microsoft must alter its version of Java
is an "important development" in the ongoing
antitrust case against the software giant, according to a
DOJ prosecutor. Meanwhile, across the country in
Washington, Microsoft Corp. defense lawyers took a
new tack today in their cross-examination of John Soyring,
IBM's director of network computing services, in the
ongoing antitrust court battle. Learn
LCD screens made their
entry in the computing world in portable computers, but
now the big new market is in replacing the bulky cathode
ray tube (CRT) monitors most commonly attached to desktop
Back out west in Las Vegas, new liquid crystal
display screens for desktops are springing up
all over Comdex this week, but significant obstacles to
widespread acceptance remain. Full
the day: "Right-handers go over there,
left-handers go over there, the rest of you, come with me." - Yogi Berra
Monday, November 16
Setting the stage for
testimony from a government expert, antitrust prosecutors
today showed new portions of videotaped testimony from
Microsoft chief executive Bill Gates in which he spars
with questioners over his company's Internet strategy. Full story here.
Meanwhile on the other side of the country, Fall Comdex '98
opens in Las Vegas to huge throngs, hot keynotes, and
excited anticipation of the latest gadgets and gizmos. Follow the week's events
PRIMED FOR SKY SHOW
could be a beauty, a beast ... or a bust. Experts say the
Leonid meteor storm, due to sweep over Earth on Tuesday,
will sandblast satellites and light up the skies with the
kind of show seen only every 33 years. But they also
point out that the Leonids have a habit of confounding
expectations. Details here.
the day: "It's amazing that the amount
of news that happens in the world every day always just exactly fits
the newspaper." - Jerry Seinfeld