29th > March > 1999 Archive

The Register breaking news

Compaq rolls out stealth selling plans

Obviously badly shaken by the flak it has received from distributors and dealers as it emulates the Dell direct model, Compaq has introduced full details of how much it cares for the channel. Tomorrow, according to US reports, distributors will be told that they can get an extra few points of margin if they sell ProSignia boxes. But over at You are Part of the Plan, Compaq is rolling out its SMB Advisory Council. This gives small and medium sized businesses a clear option: buy direct from Compaq or use its channel. Given that Hobson's Choice, which method will they use? According to the Web pages, which have snuck in under the usual PR flak, part of the "Plan" is to address inequities in the sale of ProSignias. Needless to say, these inequities (iniquities) are caused by Compaq itself. The evidence for this is a particularly coy statement on the site which quotes an unnamed value added reseller as saying: "PartnerDirect seemed to be a move by Compaq to diffuse the argument that Compaq was going around the distributors with DirectPlus, said one VAR not yet briefed on the program." This source is made to say this so that Compaq can knock down the arguments to PartnerDirect. Evidently, Compaq has had its entire dealer community up in arms. And who can blame them? ®
Mike Magee, 29 Mar 1999
The Register breaking news

UK falls behind in US patent crush

The latest report from the US Patent Office has revealed that the United Kingdom is falling behind in the international league table. While the UK filed 3464 US patents in 1998, compared to 2678 the year before, the annual statistics, revealed on Friday, showed that the UK was in fifth place after Japan, Germany, France and Taiwan, and only just ahead of Canada and South Korea. That will be bad news for the UK government, which has plans to encourage innovation here. ®
Mike Magee, 29 Mar 1999
The Register breaking news

How Compaq views the ‘real’ world

An internal document passed to The Register by an insider has revealed how CEO Eckhard Pfeiffer wants the world to see Compaq when he opens his kimono. The presentation, called Corporate Strategies, contains the warning: "It should be used as an internal document only. The content should serve as a strategy umbrella for your more specific division strategy and initiatives." The 17-page presentation tells Compaq execs they should present the Digital-Tandem takeovers as a "new world of computing forged by Compaq". This, says Compaq, is the New World of Computing. In the light of its recent debacle with its distributors and dealers, it is interesting that Compaq suggests it is a leader in the channel. Digital, on the other hand, brings leadership in customer service and support, enterprise systems integration, a global enterprise sales force, and leading edge technology and platforms including the Alpha, OpenVMS and Unix. "Together we make the best Computing Company in the World," it trills. This will be little consolation to the tens of thousands DEC staff Compaq laid off last year. One of Compaq's other aims in this document is to make the integration of Digital a "best-in-class" case study... "Compaq's unique approach to computing -- industry standards, deep partnerships, useful innovation, and customer responsiveness -- has established us in the #1 position in nearly everything we do," the document claims. The strategy is driven by seven key areas, Compaq claims. Significantly, its lead in 64-bit computing is based on Alpha and Digital Unix, with Merced and Intel IA-64 getting ne'er a mention. Its number five key corporate objectives are Number one in customer satisfaction, number one in return on invested capital, number one in market share, one of the top 10 best places to work and one of the top ten most admired companies as measured by Fortune Magazine. The suits who created the document obviously do not realise that some of these five key corporate objectives are incompatible. If return on investment (ROI), a constant theme by Pfeiffer, conflicts with being one of the top ten most admired companies, Compaq may not be one of the top ten best places to work. The redundancies last year demonstrate that. The document often mentions the need for Compaq to develop good supply chain management. "The lead partner receives the greatest share of mind for all key partners," says the document. ®
Mike Magee, 29 Mar 1999
The Register breaking news

Blair condemns kids to life of everlasting Cobol

A year ago Posted 31 March 1998 The PM of the UK, Tony Blair, will spend a fortune educating young people to tackle the millennium bug, he said yesterday, with a task force ready by April next year. But that will give the estimated 20,000 bug busters only eight months to fix systems in the UK, meaning that after the British Government has spent an estimated £100 million after this month’s budget, the trainees will be left with largely useless Cobol skills. The light at the end of the tunnel is that in 2042 there will be another problem with dates, on Unix-based systems, but it is expected few if any of the trainees will feel like brushing up on their long-forgotten skills. Blair is devoting no money towards the estimated £3 billion that the UK public sector needs, but instead is targeting small to medium sized businesses. Blair has looked increasingly harassed by his task as head of Cool Britannia. During the Budget Speech, earlier this month, he looked worried as his Chancellor, Gordon Brown, spelled out the future for UK citizens. The Register wonders whether, like Dorien Grey, he has a picture of UK comedian Jasper Carrott in his attic at 10 Downing Street. ®
The Register breaking news

Microsoft forces IE5 downloads for W2000 beta users

A beta tester of Microsoft's Windows 2000 software applications has reported that users need Internet Explorer 5.0 to download patches and updates. But, as we reported on Saturday, using IE 5.0 opens users to security risks (see IE5 security hole lets snoopers scoop your clipboard). The tester, who does not wish to be named, said that after he had received the CDs, he paid a visit to this Microsoft Web site to "snoop around. "After entering my username and password I was rewarded with the following, which makes it clear that YOU MUST USE INTERNET EXPLODER V5 to get info on Windoze 2000:-- "Thank You for your interest in Windows Update. Windows Update is the online extension of Windows that helps you get the most out of your computer. Windows. 98 and Windows. 2000 users: Please start the Windows Update service from the link on your Start menu. "Windows. 95 and Windows NT. 4.0 users: You will need to install Internet Explorer 5 in order to use Windows Update." ®
Mike Magee, 29 Mar 1999
The Register breaking news

Win64 order of boot expected RSN

Veteran Digital and Compaq watcher Terry Shannon is reporting in his newsletter, Shannon knows Compaq, that a demo of Win64 is imminent. Shannon says that Win64 may be demoed at the WinHEC conference in early April but Compaq would love to show it off at Innovate 99. Compaq successfully booted Win64 on its Alpha platform at the end of last year, and at an Intel Developer Forum in February, senior Merced engineers reckoned they'd be able to do the same in a month or so. His information is that Microsoft would like to field a Beta One release late this year, followed by a Beta Two about 12 months from now, and a Release Candidate by mid-2000. "Of course, what Microsoft wants and what will actually transpire may differ," Shannon rightly points out. ®
Mike Magee, 29 Mar 1999
The Register breaking news

Apple dealer bombed

An Athens-based Apple reseller was the victim on Friday of a terrorist bomb attack. The bombers are believed to be outraged at Nato's airstrikes against Serbia. The Greek police received a warning, relayed via a local TV station, that a shop selling American computers was to be bombed. The shop was damaged in the blast, but fortunately no one was severely injured or killed. Ironically, Macs display a bomb icon when they crash. ®
Team Register, 29 Mar 1999
The Register breaking news

Amazon.com to launch auction service

Internet bookstore giant Amazon.com has set its sights on becoming an online auction house. In a move that will see it go head to head with the likes of eBay and Onsale, Amazon.com is developing its own auction facility. CEO Jeff Bezos is reported in the Wall Street Journal to have said the company had already signed up 117 businesses that want to run auctions on its site. Clothing, jewellery, electronic goods and photographic equipment are among the list of products set to feature in the new service. The online auction sector has been receiving an increasing amount of attention with current market leader eBay announcing its plans to float last week. eBay has had its fair share of controversy, having come under fire after it was discovered that its service was being used to buy and sell pirate software. Last December, eBay customers were hit by a con man who took money from people but didn't send out any goods. At the time eBay said it was not in a position to compensate anyone that had been ripped off. They were advised to take legal action, but were offered no help. This sort of criminal activity is obviously a concern to Amazon.com, as it has said it will reimburse anyone who encounters such fraudulent activity, up to the value of $250. No date was given for the launch of the service, but a representative of Amazon.com hinted it would go live soon. ®
Sean Fleming, 29 Mar 1999
The Register breaking news

Security lapse hits Nintendo site

An apparently major security fault on a Nintendo UK site has resulted in the names, addresses and email addresses of individuals freely available to surfers on the Web. The site, Nintendo UK, offers an online shopping service but postings on the news.admin.net-abuse newsgroup have revealed that details of would-be shoppers are freely viewable on the Web. This morning, we were able to access a very long list of individuals who apparently had no idea their personal details were freely available. An official Nintendo UK representative said that the site did not have official santion from her company. "They certainly have not contacted us for approval," she said. Nintendo was creating its own UK site and would take action against infringement of its brand name, she added. ®
Mike Magee, 29 Mar 1999
The Register breaking news

Melissa virus threatens to bring email to a halt

Email users today face being tricked into passing on a new kind of chain-letter virus which could crash their PC systems and clog-up their servers. The threat, going by the name Melissa, affects Microsoft Word 97, Word 2000 and Outlook. Hundreds of thousands of PCs have already been affected, according to today's Financial Times. The virus strikes by sending an email entitled "Important message from..." followed by the senders' name, deceiving users into believing they recognise the sender. Messages usually read: "Here is the document you asked for. Don't show it to anyone else." A Word document is attached to the email, normally named List.doc. Inquisitive recipients get a list of 80 smutty Web sites plus the virus infection. From there, 50 names are picked from the recipient's address book and each is sent a new message carrying the virus. The whole process is then repeated. The virus itself does little to actually damage unlucky recipients' PC systems, though it may disable anti-virus protection software. The real threat comes from the sheer volume of traffic it can create, enabling it to clog company email servers and the Internet. Once Melissa is inside your PC it will infect your Word documents. It will only become activated if it is activated at a time when the minutes of the hour match the day of the month. For example, ten minutes past the hour on the tenth day of the month. It will then insert the following phrase into the open Word document: "Twenty-two points, plus triple-word score, plus fifty points for using all my letters. Game's over. I'm outta here." The bug was discovered on Friday and warnings were issued over the weekend. The Dr Solomon's Anti-virus Patrol Unit of software company McAfee found it first at the alt.sex newsgroup on Friday afternoon. The Computer Emergency response Team at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh put out an alert the next day, warning Melissa could put email systems out of service. Companies acted rapidly to the advice. Intel turned off all external and internal email worldwide on Saturday morning to do checks and stop any risk of spreading. The chip giant's email service resumed as normal on Saturday evening. Microsoft is also reported to have suspended all incoming and outgoing email on Friday. Melissa is one of the fastest spreading virus encountered so far, according to anti-virus company DataFellows. "We've never seen a virus spread so rapidly," comments Mikko Hypponen, DataFellows' manager of anti-virus research. "We've seen a handful of viruses that distribute themselves automatically over email, but not one of them has been as successful as Melissa in the real world." Hypponen said he expected many companies to encounter the virus today, possibly causing chaos to their systems. ®
Linda Harrison, 29 Mar 1999
The Register breaking news

Universal, BMG team up on Net music

'Big five' music companies Bertelsmann Music Group (BMG) and Universal have agreed to combine their upcoming digital music distribution programmes into a single operation run by Universal. News of the deal, leaked anonymously to music company MP3.com, comes on the heels of a similar arrangement struck between Sony and EMI, two other 'big five' labels (see earlier story). The Sony/EMI deal appears to be centre on a decision by EMI to back Sony's digital distribution technology, codenamed MagicGate. It's not yet clear whether the deal simply involves EMI's use of MagicGate or that Sony will handle all of EMI's online sales. The BMG/Universal agreement is remarkably similar, with BMG backing Universal's Providence digital distribution technology, an offshoot of the company's e-commerce system development. Rather than licensing the technology, BMG has chosen to outsource its online distribution system to Universal. Fortunately, neither deal should impact the wider issue of the need for a universal digital music format, currently being explored by the music industry-led Secure Digital Music Initiative (SDMI). Like IBM's Madison Project (see earlier story), both MagicGate and Providence are technologies that focus on music distribution, rights management and e-commerce -- the specific format the music is stored in is, to an extent, not at stake, since multiple formats can and will be supported. The SDMI will ultimately define a specification detailing what a secure distribution system must do, and there's no reason to believe that MagicGate, Providence, Madison and other products, most notably the one Microsoft is working on, won't meet that spec. In fact, it's the Microsoft product that's likely to be driving the music industry agreements. If there's one thing the major labels fear more than MP3, it's the idea of Microsoft dominating the delivery of digital content. Microsoft is working hard to develop a content delivery system that it will embed in Windows 2000, a development programme brought home by the company's $15 million investment in rights management software specialist Reciprocal. ®
Tony Smith, 29 Mar 1999
The Register breaking news

Cyber-sex surfers suffer from porn addiction

Looking at too much sex on the Web won't just make you go blind, it's addictive and can damage your mental health, according to Californian academics. And it's not particularly arousing either, they claim. Surfers who regularly dip into the Internet in search of porno material risk psychological damage through addiction. They are most at risk from sexually-compulsive behaviour, according to the study from Stanford University and the San Jose Marital and Sexuality Center in California. The report was covered in that most upright of organs, the Daily Mail today. The research, which was carried out online, revealed that around eight per cent of those who regularly used the Internet spent at least 11 hours a week looking for naughty pics and vids -– sometimes at work. 9177 anonymous replies flooded in for the 59-question document, printed in the American Psychological Association journal, Psychology: Research and Practice. The majority were from men in relationships, half of whom confessed to regularly looking porn for over the Web. Six per cent said this behaviour went on in the office as well as at home. Respondents found penetrating the Internet easier than reaching for top shelf mags -– though all said they were over 18 and legally entitled to buy their porn in the shops. Experts said the sheer volume of such material on the Web was tempting vulnerable people. Up to eight per cent of the sex searchers were at risk from "sex addiction", higher than the estimated five per cent in the general population. One researcher commented: "Most people appear to use sexual material on the Internet as a source of entertainment more than for sexual release, and said that online experiences were satisfying but not particularly arousing." "Sex" is still the most frequently looked up word by those searching for sites on the Internet. It can even slip in and out of filter engines, including those claiming to be family-friendly. ®
Linda Harrison, 29 Mar 1999
The Register breaking news

Accounting rules force Intel chip disclosures

Changes in the way US corporations have to disclose their financial information have led Intel to release segment information about its business. Similar changes forced IBM last week to show that it had lost $1 billion on PCs last year. According to Intel form 10-K filed with the US Securities and Exchange Commission last Friday, sales to Compaq and Dell accounted for nearly a quarter of all MPU sales in 1998, with 13 per cent and 11 per cent respectively. Overall, Intel's sales of microprocessors accounted for 82 per cent of its turnover, with other elements, including its networking business, only accounting for 18 per cent. According to the filing, the Intel architecture business accounted for $21,545,000,000 of revenue in 1998, while its Computing Enhancement Group, which includes chipsets, embedded products and Flash, turned over $4,047,000,000. The former made an operating profit of $9,077,000,000, while the latter made an operating profit of $358,000,000. However, under the category "All", revenues amounted to $681,000,000, with an effective operating loss of $1,056,000,000. Obviously these "losses" were offset by the big operating profits of its other chip business. The Intel Networking Group does not come under the scope of the new operating rules, nor do some other minor business groups. Intel's next set of financial results comes out on the 14 April. ®
Mike Magee, 29 Mar 1999
The Register breaking news

Red Hat to bundle Metrowerks' CodeWarrior for Linux

Integrated development environment specialist Metrowerks today announced it has ported its CodeWarrior IDE to Red Hat Linux. The software will ship in May in the first of two forms: CodeWarrior for Red Hat Linux GNU Edition, which simply links the CodeWarrior IDE to Linux's standard GNU compiler and debugger. The second, Professional version is set to ship in Q4 will integrate Metrowerks' own C, C++ and Java compilation and debugging tools. Both companies will be selling the GNU Edition (US price $99), and Red Hat said it intends to bundle the software with its Linux distribution. The Professional Edition will retail for $499. CodeWarrior was launched in 1994 and quickly became the development environment of choice for Mac-based PowerPC developers. More recently, the company has expanded the IDE to provide cross-platform Wintel and MacOS development tools. Versions for the PalmOS and PlayStation are also available, and Metrowerks has already announced support for the upcoming PlayStation 2. ®
Tony Smith, 29 Mar 1999
The Register breaking news

Cygnus unveils official Linux PSX2 development tools

Sony's selection of Linux as the development platform of choice for the PlayStation 2 was reinforced today with Cygnus Solutions' announcement of its Sony-sanctioned GNU Pro software development environment for the next-generation games console. Cygnus said GNUPro had been ported to and optimised for the PlayStation 2's 128-bit Emotion Engine processor, plus the console's co-processors. The software development system will also support the PlayStation 2's MIPS R3000-based I/O processing sub-system, which also powers the original PlayStation console. Sony was enthusiastic in its backing of GNUPro. "We believe that by working with Cygnus, our title developers will have the best possible development tools available," said Shin'ichi Okamoto, VP for software development at Sony's Computer Entertainment division. Sony is currently shipping GNUPro with its official PlayStation 2 development rigs, and Cygnus will be offering the software in a standalone version. That said, Sony has also backed Metrowerks' Windows 95/98/NT-hosted PlayStation 2 version of its CodeWarrior IDE, so while the company is backing Linux for its own development systems, it clearly doesn't want to force developers onto the open source platform. However, there's no ship date for the Metrowerks product as yet. Metrowerks partnered with Sony some years back to create a version of CodeWarrior for the Net Yaroze, a networkable version of the PlayStation aimed primarily at developers. Metrowerks also offers a version of CodeWarrior for Sega's 128-bit Dreamcast console. Sega announced earlier this month that it would provide developers with CodeWarrior for Dreamcast as part of the console's SDK. ® See also Red Hat to bundle Metrowerks' CodeWarrior for Linux
Tony Smith, 29 Mar 1999
The Register breaking news

Compaq outlines low end Linux strategy

The Compaq strategy to link Linux, Alpha and its own Tru64 Unix took further shape today as a senior exec at the company outlined its plans. But the one-to-one telephone call offered little hope that Merced was an all-time Compaq favourite. Jesse Lipcon, high performance server platform manager, with overall control of both Alpha chips and the platform, said in the clearest statement of Compaq to date that its own chip was the platform of choice. He said: "Alpha is 64-bit and has been since 1992." If and when Merced and Intel's IA-64 platform have market share, Lipcon said he had no doubt it would be successful. He would not comment on whether it was late or not. Said Lipcon: "With our Unix platform, typically our competition is HP, IBM and Sun and it depends on applications." He said Tru64 was aimed at data warehousing, high performance applications and Internet servers. Many small Web servers use Linux-Apache combinations and as they grew they would move over to Alpha-Tru64 platforms, said Lipcon. "We see Tru64 as complementary to Linux," he said. "but with both running on the Alpha platform. It's a little brother, big brother relationship." He said: "We believe Linux-Alpha is a great platform. The highest volume of small Web servers tends to be Apache on Linux." He said big machines like AltaVista and Yahoo! servers typically used Tru64. "We're building bridges between Linux and Tru64. Alpha platforms will spread across our entire product line. This is no secret. We certainly have every interest in shipping EV6 across our whole line in the very near future." The reason for that, he hinted, was that Linux ran extremely well on the Alpha platform. ® Related Stories Merced project in utter disarray How Compaq views the real world
Mike Magee, 29 Mar 1999
The Register breaking news

Iridium gets 60 day reprieve

Hard pressed satellite phone company Iridium has been given a 60 day waiver on its $800 million debt. That comes about because by now Iridium was supposed to have had revenues amounting to at least $4 million, and at least 27,000 total Iridium World Satellite service customers by now. As far as we know, Iridium has not yet sold one satellite phone in Europe. Not even in Kosovo. Unfortunately, most European and US journalists who could have made use of the service were expelled from the region. Iridium admits there are problems with the service. Its worldwide partner is Kyocera, which has not yet started shipping the phones in Europe. However, at a press conference at CeBIT last week, Iridium successfully demonstrated the phone did work. ®
Mike Magee, 29 Mar 1999
The Register breaking news

3Com to can SAN plan

3Com has abandoned its attempt to break into the Storage Area Network (SAN) market, less than six months after embarking on the strategy. The company's president and COO, Bruce Claflin, described the move, which is being made to allow the company to focus on its networking and Palm products, as a "difficult but good business decision". A 3Com spokesman told US newswires that the company was months away from releasing the SAN products it had announced last November through partnerships with four storage vendors: Clariion, Data General, Legato and MTI. The company recently posted Q3 1999 results, which showed a slowdown in its growth -- year-on-year profits were up tenfold but still not as high as the company had originally expected. At the same time, company executives predicted sales will continue to slow in Q4. It's clear, then, that 3Com feels its plans for the SAN market were rather too enthusiastic and it needs to focus on what it's best at right now instead of pushing into new areas, conserving its R&D spend for other, more core projects. The spokesman said the investment 3Com would have to make to get to the forefront of the SAN arena was not one is was prepared to make. Yet he maintained the company's line on the SAN market was that it continues to be highly lucrative. That suggests that, at the very least, 3Com nowadays has a rather more short-term outlook than it has had in the past, or worse, it's financial position for the next quarter is looking considerably poorer than the last one. ®
Tony Smith, 29 Mar 1999
The Register breaking news

New Joisey company steals IBM's pearls

We tried to register WWW.SOMETHING.COM as mentioned in Loot Gerstner's speech last week as we thought we'd auction the name for charity. Readers last week will have noticed that Lou "Boots" Gerstner, CEO of Big Blue with a salary to match, was worried that WWW.SOMETHING.COM would come from no-where and destroy his business. This despite the fact that IBM admitted last week it had lost $1 billion on PC sales in 1998, thanks to new regulations in the US. Helas, we could not register www.something.com because, our people tell us a New Jersey company has done that thing already. So who is the New Joisey contendor, we asked our registrar general of domains. He said: "I'd look in the direction of IBM." Journalists were awaiting confirmation at press time. ®
Mike Magee, 29 Mar 1999
The Register breaking news

Embedded systems set to beat Y2K bug after all

According to a report in the Daily Telegraph, it looks like the flesh-eating millennium bug might turn out to be little more than a minor irritation, after all. According to BSC Consulting, less than seven per cent of embedded systems will fall over as a result of the year 2000 date change. Embedded systems had been held up by some analysts and job-creation specialists (you mean IT consultants, surely – Ed) as the weakest link in the year 2000 compliance problem. BSC Consulting’s UK study of 38,000 systems all using embedded chips (such as lifts and medical equipment) found the sector to be in much ruder health than had been expected. There is still no excuse for complacency though. Earlier this month, the government warned that the agricultural sector was at risk from the bug. ®
Bugsy Malone, 29 Mar 1999
The Register breaking news

Crash death Micromuse founder drugged and raped model – allegedly

Chris Dawes, the computer millionaire who was killed last week in a sports car smash, drugged and raped a woman days before being arrested on drugs charges.
Team Register, 29 Mar 1999
The Register breaking news

AMD-Compaq Alpha plans draw closer

As revealed here some months ago, no-one should show surprise at the connectors on K7 processors. The AMD K7 processor shares the Alpha 21264 bus with its young cousin. The chipset handles SMP stuff, and two way copper connectors just denote a two way system -- a typical PC configuration these days -- unless you have a Celeron of course. An architect points out to us that two way connectors do not exist on the Alpha EV6 connectors, but that's because they're aimed at high end systems up to 128 Alpha processors, as already revealed here. But, says the architect, there may well be a difference between Slot A and Slot B. The architect pointed us to a site at our bitter competitors at Ziff Davies who posted an analysis of the Alpha at 21264 However, that report seemed to have gone West by the time we'd seen it. Compaq and the Alpha consortium refused to comment at press time. ®
Mike Magee, 29 Mar 1999
The Register breaking news

City says buy Morse, sell Computacenter

Investors were yesterday advised to switch shares between two UK resellers - offload old-timer Computacenter to invest in stockmarket newcomer Morse. Broker Dresdner Kleinwort Benson (DKB) said its clients should buy into the newly floated Morse, according to The Sunday Times. Its reasons were that Computacenter shares were expensive at 581.5p, against what DKB considers to be its fair value range of 350p to 450p. London-based reseller Morse floated on March 23, priced at 250p per share. This afternoon’s market did not responded to DKB’s advice. Morse was down 5 pence at 245p. Computacenter was up 3.5p at 585p. Clive Longbottom, CSL analyst, said Morse was expanding rapidly. But he did not agree that it would be worth withdrawing cash from Computacenter to invest in Morse, unless for possible short-term gain. "For long term returns, I think it is still better to stick with Computacenter. Its plans for expansion in Europe are moving the company up the scale to allow it to compete more effectively with other service providers," said Longbottom. ®
Linda Harrison, 29 Mar 1999
The Register breaking news

Microsoft divides into five business groups

Microsoft has split itself into five separate parts, as predicted here. The company's business groups target specific categories of user: home and retail products; business productivity; developer; consumer Windows and commerce; and business enterprise. Microsoft president Steve Ballmer described the new organisation as the "reinvention" of Microsoft. "Software is going to play a far broader role in our lives than we can even imagine today," he added. "When we took stock of our ability to meet these future opportunities, it became clear that we were organized to meet today's needs but not those of the next decade." The reorganisation neatly divides Microsoft into business units that could, depending on the outcome of the company's settlement talks with the US Department of Justice, make it easier to hive off parts into independent companies. ® Visit The Register later this week for full coverage of the Microsoft reorganisation.
Tony Smith, 29 Mar 1999
The Register breaking news

Intel's Barrett a director of thin clients

A source close to a whisper told us this evening that Intel's CEO Craig Barrett is a director of thin client company NCD. Would anyone care to tell us why he is? As far as we can tell, he's a microprocessor sort of a geezer... ®
Fat Boy, 29 Mar 1999