16th > October > 2002 Archive

BrightMail works to close spam loopholes

BrightMail Inc yesterday released version 4.0 of its spam filtering services to enterprises and service providers, saying it has added features aimed at recognizing sophisticated spam that was previously undetectable. Anti-Spam 4.0 has a feature BrightMail calls BrightSig, which identifies "polymorphic spam attacks". These are attacks where essentially the same email is sent, but with subtle differences in punctuation or spacing designed to circumvent signature-based spam filters. The new version also has an upgraded installation and configuration tool, runs on Solaris and Windows 2000 operating systems, and interoperates with enterprise messaging platforms including Exchange and Lotus Notes. The Anti-Spam service uses an email gateway filter that enforces rules created daily by BrightMail's team of developers. The company identifies unsolicited commercial email from 100 million decoy email accounts that are seeded to attract spam, and is used by six of the top 10 US ISPs. © ComputerWire
ComputerWire, 16 Oct 2002

AOL drops third party pop-ups

America Online Inc, the online arm of the AOL Time Warner Inc media empire, is showing signs of responding to the maturing consumer internet audience with the launch of AOL 8.0, the latest version of its flagship service, writes Kevin Murphy. In the first service upgrade since CEO Jonathan Miller took over the reins in August, AOL has vowed to abolish third-party pop-up advertising and said it has introduced new spam-filtering tools, tackling the two major annoyances frequently cited by AOL users. AOL has about 35 million users, but has recently seen investors urge it to reinvigorate the slowing growth of this subscriber base. Meanwhile, rivals such as Microsoft Corp's MSN and EarthLink Inc have made noise about offering customers an experience free of marketing hassle. MSN, which pushes itself as the "useful" alternative to AOL's "easy" offering, kicked off a $300m marketing campaign for its version 8 this week. AOL now seems to be responding, by marketing to an increasingly savvy internet-using public that are fed up of seeing their screens filled with intrusive commercials. AOL 8.0 users will now be able to create white-lists of users they are prepared to receive email from, which allows a virtually 100% spam-free inbox. The software will also have a button that, when clicked, tags an email as spam and reports it to AOL. Email can then be filtered by sender into known contact, unknown and known spammer. The company also said that pop-up ads from third-party advertisers will not be carried, once it has worked through its current inventory of such placements. AOL has also scrapped its sly practice of resetting users' marketing preferences a year after they have opted-out of receiving commercial offers from AOL partners. Miller said in a statement: "By ending third-party pop-ups and merchandise sales we are giving our members what they want, which in turn will make AOL an even better vehicle for out advertising partners." Last month Miller promised to "reinvigorate our relationship with marketers", and this could be seen as a first step. A key part of AOL's strategy involves getting users to switch to broadband connections, where the margins are higher and there is a greater potential for add-on services such as pay-per-view. AOL 8.0 also has added features for broadband customers, in an attempt to drive this uptake. While AOL has thrown more bandwidth-hungry content at its broadband subscribers, it also said it is to offer select customers the ability to have multiple AOL accounts logged on at the same time through a single connection. It will only be available to subscribers on Time Warner cable connections using AOL-compatible home networking hardware. In other features, AOL has upgraded the parent controls tools to allow parents to receive reports on their children's surfing habits, and to remotely configure the controls via the web, so they can monitor surfing from work while the kids are at home. AOL said 1.5 million subscribers have downloaded the new software since it was published on the proprietary service last week. The software will also be distributed on CD via a number of US retail chains. International AOL users will get to upgrade in the coming months. © ComputerWire
ComputerWire, 16 Oct 2002
SGI logo hardware close-up

Adobe moves into document management

Adobe Systems Inc will on Monday announce a slew of new products targeting enterprise customers, ComputerWire has learned, and the company will for the first time use a direct sales team to peddle the software, Jason Stamper writes. The new products to be announced are: Forms Server, which renders electronic forms and publishes them to any platform or device; Workflow Server, which enables companies to distribute documents according to business rules; Output Server, for publishing data output from ERP applications according to predefined templates; Document Server, a publishing and document personalization tool; and a new version of its Acrobat Reader. The new software builds on a product that Adobe garnered through its acquisition of Accelio Corp in April this year, and takes Adobe into competition with content management vendors such as Open Text Corp - which lost the bidding war to acquire Accelio - Documentum Inc and Filenet Corp. Acrobat Reader 5.1's major new feature is the ability for the sender of an Acrobat document to send a Reader Extension, which enables the receiver of the document to edit it using full Adobe Acrobat functionality. Enterprises will be able to buy a license for 10 Reader Extensions or an unlimited license, though the exact cost of those licenses is yet to be determined. Adobe said the enterprise customers it is targeting with the new software favor a close working relationship with their software vendors - hence the direct sales force - unlike its more typical graphics professional and consumer customers, which Adobe sells to via the channel. The company will supplement its direct sales efforts for the new, enterprise products with a number of value-added resellers, but conceded that to date it has only a "few" signed up. In its latest quarter ended September 30, Adobe reported sales of $284.9m, down 2.5% on year-ago figures, and down 10% sequentially. Net income was $47.2m, up 17% on 2001 and down 13% sequentially. © ComputerWire
ComputerWire, 16 Oct 2002

Sun may broaden jobs sweep

Sun Microsystems Inc could soon give up to 20% of its workforce an unexpected early Christmas present - the gift of more un-paid time with their families. Merrill Lynch analyst Steven Milunovich said Sun may cut up to 8,000 jobs this quarter - Sun is due to announce its third-quarter results this Thursday. Milunovich joins Sanford C Bernstein analyst Toni Sacconaghi who is reported to have predicted cuts of between 4,000 to 8,000. These latest numbers represent a massive jump for Santa Clara, California-based Sun, who earlier this year said it would cut 1,000 staff by December. If correct, the scale of these cuts would help to bring the company slightly more inline with layoffs experienced my many other computer and systems companies. Computing rival IBM is cutting 15,600 of its 320,000 staff while Palo Alto, California-based Hewlett Packard Co expects to cut 16,800 workers as a result of its merger with Compaq Computer Corp by the end of its fiscal year 2003, instead of the 15,000 originally planned. Sun refused to comment on reports of job cuts, but the company's finances have - like many vendors - been adversely affected by the spending slowdown. While the company announced a return to profit during the fourth quarter, in July, it also warned of a small loss during the fourth quarter. For the period ending June 30 Sun recorded sales of $3.4bn for the quarter ending June and $20m net income, compared to an $88m loss a year ago. With special charges removed, net income was $28m, compared to $10m and leading to earnings per share of $0.01. That profit ended a four-quarter run of losses, but the company warned that it expected revenues to follow normal historical patterns, and slip sequentially on the fourth quarter. This would mean it would report a slight loss for the period. Furthermore, Sun announced it could face an acquisition-related charge of $2.2bn for its second quarter if it does not see an improvement in share price. Milunovich said a cut of 8,000 could lower Sun's break-even point from about $3.1bn per quarter to perhaps $2.5bn over time. The analyst noted signs of an imminent reduction are there, as management said it would consider cuts upon getting a better look at fiscal second-half demand. Chief executive McNealy is reported to have said last week "if Sun isn't making money, we will restructure." Milunovich said the sense of urgency has been heightened by questions at last week's Gartner Group ITxpo about customers' "crisis of confidence in Sun." Milunovich said, though, the real question is not of viability but relevance, as the company backs an "increasingly retro" Sparc/Solaris combination. While the company refused to comment, McNealy has indicated that Sun hired too many field staff during recent, boom years. McNealy told press at the company's Networks event in San Francisco, California, in future he would be firmer at saying "no" to potential new hires. © ComputerWire
ComputerWire, 16 Oct 2002

France plots to evade EU rules over telecom debt

France is preparing plans to pump new funds into debt-laden France Telecom SA without breaching European Union rules against state bail-outs. Leaks in the French press suggest that it plans to create an "ad hoc structure" to hold the government 55% stake in the company, which could then borrow from banks to have the funds to participate in a rights issue to raise around 15bn euros ($14.7bn). Because the money will be raised from the private sector, it hopes to satisfy the EU. In practice, of course, the banks will only lend to the new entity because it effectively has a government guarantee. Asked about the plan in a radio interview, industry minister Nicole Fontaine said: "It is one of the trails we are following (but) there is no one government proposal." France Telecom's new chairman Thierry Breton said earlier this month that he would need two months to draw up a refinancing plan for France Telecom SA, which has debts of 69.7bn euro ($68.3bn) debt. Ironically, France Telecom was only able to build up debts of this scale, during a vast acquisition spree, because it was majority-owned by the French government. © ComputerWire
ComputerWire, 16 Oct 2002

Intel applies long memory to smart phones

Intel Corp yesterday launched an assault on the mobile handset market with the introduction of two new chips featuring high-capacity Flash memory technology. Intel described its new XScale smart phone chips as "an advancement that will help significantly improve cell phone battery life, performance and storage capacity" while also offering considerable space savings over existing XScale designs, which principally target PDAs rather than more tightly packed handsets. The PXA261 and PXA262 are both based around Intel's XScale mobile chip architecture, with the former clocked at 200MHz and the latter available in both 200MHz and 300MHz forms. But perhaps more importantly, both chips combine the application processor with the latest iteration of Intel's StrataFlash memory in a single package. The new 1.8 volt StrataFlash uses Intel's 0.13 micron process for the first time, and is available in 64, 128 and 256Mb densities. Intel has also used a technique it calls "stacked chip scale packaging" to allow up to four StrataFlash devices to be stacked on each XScale core, providing a possible memory density of 1Gb, which is more than adequate for most current applications. Despite their complexity, Intel's use of multi-level cell technology, which doubles the amount of data in each memory cell, guarantees compact proportions, an important factor in building handsets. The company claims a 56% space saving for the PXA261 with 128Mb of memory over standalone products, while the PXA262 with 256Mb of memory is said to be 65% the size of its rivals. Intel was unable to announce customers for the new designs. However, Gordon Graylish, Intel's director communications business organization, EMEA, said that the company had been "very pleased" with the reception so far. Whether Intel can force its way into the products of major handset vendors such as Nokia, Sony Ericsson, and most unlikely of all, Motorola, remains to be seen. However, the company could still make considerable headway selling its technology to south-east Asian electronics giants such as long-term partners Toshiba, Matsushita (Panasonic), Fujitsu and NEC, or to operators via original design manufacturers (ODMs) such as High Tech Computer (HTC) Corp. Intel faces stiff competition, however, from rival smart phone/PDA chip maker Texas Instruments, which has already signed up the majority of these vendors as licensees of its rival OMAP architecture. It is unclear if those licensees, which include the aforementioned Nokia, Fujitsu, Matsushita and Sony Ericsson, will be willing to support the latest XScales in addition to TI chips. OMAP differs from XScale by integrating the ARM-based application processor with market leading digital signal processor (DSP) technology. TI considers this integration beneficial in terms of multimedia performance while Intel prefers to keep the application processor separate from other components for ease of upgrading. © ComputerWire
ComputerWire, 16 Oct 2002

Storage is bustin' out all over

Expect to find much of the storage industry away from its desk over the next few days. What with Storage Expoon in Birmingham, UK Stockage in Paris, Systems in Munich setting up a StorageSolutionsArea , and the SNIA having its US symposium in San Jose, this is storage exhibition week. Quite why it should be this week is anyone's guess - Stockage used to be in September, for example. Perhaps it is to ensure that no one show gets a monopoly of the Autumn new product announcements, or maybe it is a sophisticated game of Chicken, as played by exhibition organisers. Either way, it is causing problems for suppliers with a single European office who must either spread their resources thinly, or choose one show for themselves and let their partners and resellers handle the others. Some international consolidation on the exhibition front would be nice, but the chances of it look as remote as ever. It certainly highlights the loneliness of CeBIT as the one show whose pretensions to being pan-European have any sort of basis in fact. Perhaps CeBIT's organisers will take the hint from this year's visitors, and set up a dedicated storage hall for 2003. ® The Register's Enterprise Storage Channel
Bryan Betts, 16 Oct 2002

Everywhere! starts taking sat ISP sign-ups

Everywhere! Broadband has begun accepting registrations for its one-way broadband satellite service ahead of a full commercial launch later this year. The service is based on Eutelsat's OpenSky technology and enables users to download data via a satellite at speeds up to 1Mbps. Data is uploaded via a dial-up ISP. Prices for the service start at £19.95 a month with installation costs from £99. Users are still have to pay for the cost of their dial-up ISP. Graham Roberts, MD of Everywhere! Broadband, said: "This is the solution to the problems of providing the next generation of Internet services throughout the UK. "It tackles the discriminating (sic) nature of broadband - if the cables don't reach your area you are stuck." Everywhere! Broadband is expected to being actively marketing the product as a "mass market" solution at the beginning of next year. A Hampshire-based ISP, SatDrive, is already offering a one-way satellite service for £14.99 a month. ® Related Stories Broadband Sat service for £14.99 UK to get Sat broadband for £30
Tim Richardson, 16 Oct 2002

Windows Messenger is new spam vector

The forces of evil have produced a devilish tool whereby spam can be sent to thousands of Windows users in minutes, in the guise of system alerts. This was brought to our attention by reader Mike MacNeill, who sent us a screenie of a Windows system alert offering him the university diploma of his dreams with "no required tests, classes, books or interviews," in the classic manner. Below is a smaller example: The scam is the brainchild of an outfit called DirectAdvertiser, and leverages the Windows RPC (Remote Procedure Call) function. I downloaded the demo version and played around for a while. My results may not be entirely accurate because I didn't use the full, $700 version, and because I used it on my own network behind a firewall. However, running Ethereal on the box and trying it out revealed packets destined for ports 135 (DCE/RPC), 137 (NetBIOS name service) and 138 (NetBIOS UDP) on the target. So we have here essentially a NetBIOS attack tool. It's capable of attacking entire IP ranges, but will not (the company says) get past a firewall or provide a hyperlink in the alert to the attacker's commercial Web site. The latter shortcoming is currently being addressed, the company says. The quickest way to defeat it is simply to shut off Windows Messenger (not the MSN Messenger IM client), so long as it's not needed by other applications. Otherwise port 135 UDP and TCP can be filtered. If neither of these solutions is suitable, the company invites you to share with them "any questions, comments, or suggestions that you may have" at this e-mail address. ®
Thomas C Greene, 16 Oct 2002

‘Explicit’ ads floor Vodafone

Another day, another big-name company gets a ticking-off from the guardians of advertising decency. Step forward Vodafone, which has been told not to use "explicit and gratuitous" images to flog mobile services. One of the ads that upset the Ad watchdog showed a couple on a stairwell. They were partly clothed with the woman pressed against the wall with one leg over the shoulder of a man who was kneeling between her legs. The caption said: "Get the flirting over with before you get home. Text". Another ad bearing the same caption featured a partly clothed couple on the bonnet of a car with the woman straddling the man. People had complained on the grounds that the ads were "sexually gratuitous, unsuitable to be seen by children and likely to cause serious and widespread offence". Vodafone denied this claiming that research had found that a large number of young people used text messages to "enhance their love lives". They claimed the ads merely reflected the real mobile behaviour of younger people. The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) disagreed and asked Vodafone not to repeat this approach in future. ®
Tim Richardson, 16 Oct 2002

If I tell you that I'll have to kill you: Red Hat fights the DMCA

Red Hat has struck a small blow against the DMCA, by publishing a security patch which can only be explained fully to people who are not within US jurisdiction. The company's position here seems to be not altogether voluntary - according to a spokesman "it is bizarre, and unfortunately something Red Hat cannot easily do much about," but like it or not Red Hat has been recruited to the campaign to make the DMCA look ridiculous. The patch itself is on the Red Hat site, on this page, and the oddity here can be seen if you go down to the bottom. Under the heading "references" there is a link to http://www.thefreeworld.net/non-US/. At this point, those of you reading this while within US jurisdiction should have a care. We will endeavour to unfold the tale to you without exposing ourselves to action under the DMCA, but we stress now that we are not encouraging you to do so, nor is it our intention to provide you with the tools to do so. Thefreeworld.net is not as yet an especially widely-known site, but its purpose is explained here. Briefly, it notes that the US has shown a readiness to bust individuals who perfectly legally publish information and software outside of the US, on the basis that this is published to people within US jurisdiction, among others. In order to publish this information without getting busted, Thefreeworld.net uses a licensing agreement which specifically rules out people within US jurisdiction. You can see the licence here, and again we stress that people within US jurisdiction should not accept this licence. This bit makes it all nice and clear: By continuing you warrant that you: * are not a citizen of the USA. * are not under US jurisdiction, including embassies, naval vessels, military bases and other areas of US jurisdiction. * are permitted to import security information that may include information that can be used to subvert copy or content protection, even though this is not the primary purpose of the supply of this information. * are not obtaining the information with the intent to commit a crime. * understand the information is provided without fee and without warranty and/or guarantee of correctness of any kind. * acknowledge that by downloading the data outside of the European Union you are performing an act of importation. This rules out several Register staffers, and as Mr Orlowski in particular, not being a US citizen but being within easy reach of the feds, is particularly vulnerable to being lined up in front of a military tribunal in Cuba and shot, we caution him to stay away. So what's all this got to do with Red Hat? Well, non-qualifying people, we can't exactly tell you that. But when we asked Red Hat about it we got an official comment which at least partially explains it: "RHSA-2002-158 is an errata kernel which addresses certain security vulnerabilities. Quite simply, these vulnerabilities were discovered and documented by ppl outside of the US, and due to the Digital Millenium Copyright Act legislation in the US, it is potentially dangerous to disclose any information on security vulnerabilities, which may also be used in order to circumvent digital security - i.e. computer security. For this reason, RH cannot publish this security information, as it is not available from the community in the first instance. The www.thefreeworld.net site allows for accessing this information, but requires you agree to terms which protect the author and documenter of the patches from being accusations that they themselves have breached DMCA." Got that? In some instances at least, the very act of explaining what has been fixed by a security patch could be construed as explaining how the security of a product could be breached, and hence could be viewed as a breach of the DMCA. This is of course ridiculous. Does this mean that all of the companies issuing security advisories are breaching the DMCA? Well, quite possibly. Does it mean The Register's pole position security watcher John Leyden might be breaching the DMCA every day of his life? Oh dear. Obviously, it is ridiculous, and the notion that the DMCA could be used to send virtually the entire security industry to prison for a very long time is ridiculous - just as ridiculous as the idea that the US authorities are going to start flying non-US citizens to Cuba to shoot them. But if neither of these things are ever going to happen, why do the laws permit them? At the very least, it's untidy. It seems to us that the authors of the explanatory document which US citizens are not permitted to read would have been most unlikely to get themselves busted by just publishing it. We could of course be wrong, but it seems to us the more likely purpose of the exercise was to make a point, which they have done splendidly. The document has been copyrighted, and the authors have chosen to restrict its distribution, and to use Thefreeworld.net licence as the mechanism for doing so. Note that it is the copyright, rather than fear of the DMCA, that has forced Red Hat to join in. Looking at the Ts & Cs we think it would probably be OK (i.e. not a breach of copyright) for us to publish it here via a click-through agreement for the benefit (or should that be continuing deprivation?) of US readers, and we could adopt a DMCA defence wall along the lines of Thefreeworld.net's in order to shield ourselves from the other stuff. Not that we'd be any more likely to get busted than the authors, but we feel a responsibility to support their stance here. But as you already know where you can or can't read it, our duplicating the mechanisms here would serve no purpose. Making points in the way the authors have however does serve a purpose, because it keeps the DMCA in the public eye, and exposes its stupidities. More of this would be good, and possibly most excellent sport, we think. And the perpetrators? It's not entirely clear, but Red Hat names some of the people involved in the fixes. In addition, we understand that some guy called Alan Cox might have been in some way connected. You may have heard of him. ®
John Lettice, 16 Oct 2002

Vodafone swoops on Cegetel

Vodafone has delivered a knock-out blow in the tussle with Vivendi Universal to gain control of Cegetel, the French telecoms house. It is stumping up €6.3bn cash for the stakes held by fellow minority partners BT and SBC Communications, taking its share of the company to 56 per cent. And it has made a non-binding offer to buy Vivendi's 44 per cent in Cegetel for €6.77bn. This offer expires on October 30, leaving Vivendi with a very tight timetable to respond with a counter-offer. Vivendi has pre-emption rights for Cegetel shares - it has until November 10 to match Vodafone's offer to BT. Also it has to beat the $2.27 bn cash offer to SBC by 13 per cent, according to Vodafone. But where will Vivendi find the money? The company has debts of €19bn and there are serious doubts about its ability to service this. Vivendi's financial precariousness means that there will be no auction for Cegetel assets. And it also means that Vodafone is not paying top dollar - it says the transaction will be earnings enhancing Vivendi had wanted to take its stake in the telco to above 50 per cent, enabling it to consolidate the company's balance sheet and strong cash flow. Failure to achieve this means that cash-strapped Vivendi may face problems in the future in paying down debt. But it can console itself with less jam today - Vodafone has tabled a non-binding offer of €6.3bn for its stake. BT is to receive €4bn (£2.5bn) for its 26 per cent stake in Cegetel. This represents a return of 2.5 turns on its original investment, the company says. With this money banked, BT moves closer to its net debt target of £10bn, a mere bagatelle for a major-ish European telco. ®
Drew Cullen, 16 Oct 2002

Intel Q3 results disappoint, outlook cloudy

Intel's third quarter results, released on Tuesday, showed profits significantly higher than the previous year, but short of analysts' expectations. The world's largest chipmaker earned $686m, or $0.10 a share, in the third quarter, compared with a profit of $106m, or $0.02 a share, in the same period last year. Though higher, the company's per share earnings came in well behind analysts' expectations of earnings of $0.13 a share. Excluding acquisition-related costs of approximately $108m, the company's net income in the third quarter was $768m, while earnings were $0.11 per share. Third quarter revenues fell slightly to $6.50bn from $6.55bn. The company blamed the shortfalls in its numbers on continuing weakness in the PC market and said that the outlook for the fourth quarter remained uncertain because of global economic uncertainty. Said Craig Barrett, Intel chief executive officer in statement: "Although the industry is experiencing one of its worst downturns ever, we continue to move our technology forward, introducing 18 new processors during the quarter, all on our leading-edge 0.13-micron technology. "Going forward, we remain committed to investments in new products and technologies, setting the stage for us to emerge even stronger when the economy and demand recover." On Tuesday, shares in Intel in New York closed up 9 per cent during regular trading, but fell by nearly 13 per cent in after hours trading, shortly after the results were released. Though still profitable, the firm's results reflect the continuing weakness in the chip industry which is reeling after two years of poor results, partially thanks to slower PC demand and falling processor prices. AMD, Intel's biggest competitor, warned recently that its third quarter revenues would fall $100m short of earlier expectations. Looking forward, Intel also forecast a possible continuation of the chip industry woes saying that sales outlook for the fourth quarter remained uncertain. It expects revenues of between $6.5bn and $6.9bn for the period. Despite the significant improvement in profits over the same period last year, Intel also lowered its capital expenditure estimate to $4.7bn from earlier estimates of $5bn to $5.2bn. The company said that cost savings within ongoing construction projects would account for most of the reduction in capital expenditure. © ENN
ElectricNews.net, 16 Oct 2002

Lik-Sang lives! (Minus mod-chips)

Hong Kong-based online retailer Lik-Sang, one of the most popular importers of console hardware and software, has reopened its website for business after over a week offline which resulted from a lawsuit filed by Sony, Nintendo and Microsoft with the high court of Hong Kong. The suit, which accused Lik-Sang on infringing on copyrighted material by selling mod chips and other development and backup devices for consoles, caused the court to issue an injunction against the retailer forbidding it from selling or advertising any of the disputed products. Although the company's website is once again accepting orders for hardware and software, and existing orders will be processed over the coming days, no development, chipping or backup devices are listed on the site, and the company says that it is "not committed to selling the questioned products in the future". In many ways, this can be seen as a victory for the console companies - Lik-Sang was a popular source of mod chips among hardcore gamers. However, casual gamers seeking chips are still infinitely more likely to acquire one locally and pay to have it installed, while more technically minded consumers will simply acquire chips elsewhere. Worse, the closure of the company was a PR disaster for Microsoft, whose name was originally associated with the lawsuit - a great many customers, many of them ordering legitimate goods, felt that the handling of the situation was heavy-handed at best and showed little respect for the rights of consumers caught in the situation. Mod chips designed with piracy in mind are a serious problem for the industry, and anything that cuts down on their availability is to be welcomed; however, there are more diplomatic ways to deal with situations such as this one, and a company like Microsoft which needs all the consumer goodwill it can get at the moment would be well advised to consider those routes in future before sending in the ferocious attack lawyers. © gamesindustry.biz
gamesindustry.biz, 16 Oct 2002

Now we are two: OpenOffice.org celebrates

OpenOffice.org, the Open Source office suite based on Sun's StarOffice, celebrated its second birthday this week with a couple of new releases: a 1.0 beta for Mac OS X and a new developer release, charting the path for future user versions of OpenOffice.org 1.0. In the battle of the office suites, where there's Microsoft Office and everything else, OpenOffice.org claims 8.5 million downloads in the past two years and near compatibility with MS Office. We thought the second birthday would be a good excuse to chat with Sam Hiser of the OpenOffice.org Marketing Project about the state of the project and of office suite competition. Newsforge: How prevalent do you believe OpenOffice.org use to be? I'd imagine the everyday use is somewhere between the 8.5 million downloads and the 70,000 registered users. Hiser: That's not a bad range. A conservative estimate would place the number of users of OpenOffice.org 1.0 at 2 to 5 million. Now, that excludes any units of StarOffice 6.0. The theoretical number that's important is "all seats of Ooo1 .0 and its derivatives," which would indicate the penetration of OOo's well-documented, standard XML file format. The download numbers we have are rough, because its difficult to track downloads off of our many (now 35) mirror sites with precision. We aren't even aware of the stats from the two Chinese OpenOffice.org 1.0 derivatives, KiaOffice and RedOffice. So, Lord knows, we might have 20 million seats. There's a project here ... What needs to take place yet before OpenOffice.org can make a sizable dent in the Windows Office monopoly? Is that a realistic goal? Hiser: No question it's realistic, but it depends on what you define as a sizable dent. One arena we need to do some work is psychological -- in mind-share. That's just presence and marketing and it will take both time and persistence -- the community has those. The OpenOffice.org 1.0 suite itself is very advanced fundamentally, the code is very well organized, and the community has the mandate to continue to integrate and improve the software all the time. So there's no question that OOo and its derivatives like StarOffice 6.0 are going to compete extremely well on the ground as an office tool set. What's missing is a few key features--which we are presently working on -- like calendar, scheduling and mail handling, or full database integration, to which office suite users have become accustomed; we already have the killer file format. Once OOo introduces these features, there will be no excuse for most users, institutions, businesses or corporations to continue to pay a premium for the office suite. The implication of this is when you're talking someday about the office suite market being three to five times the size of today's market -- due to cheap hardware and penetration of computing into lesser developed areas [By the way, OpenOffice.org 1.0 is the office suite running on the single desktop that's set up in the middle of a Rwandan refugee camp -- my West African marketing people tell me.] -- you'll have today's leader holding less than 20% of that market with OOo and its derivatives holding the balance of that. If that 20% is below the tipping point, then it will go to zero faster than people expect -- like Lotus 1-2-3. There is only so much tolerance for an orphaned file format. Now, the leader is working really hard, as they do, but -- even if you talk about the tablet, voice recognition, Web services and really attractive focus-group-ed UI -- the feature set is largely mature today, and at a time when people are re-thinking how many FEWER gadgets they want in their lives ... how much LESS technology, per se, is the answer. So the leader will by no means be standing still, but they will be, like, the Aston Martin of office suites -- and OpenOffice.org x.0 will be the Volkswagen Beetle (which morphs to the Space Shuttle for the price of a support contract. ;-) What are some major goals for the software going forward? Are there features the team still really thinks the office suite needs? Hiser: All languages supportable. Not 35, but 135! (23 available today) Great integration with all supportable OS platforms Full integration with Mac's OS X Aqua! Groupware across all platforms Database (some integration is available today to experts) a great implementation of XML in the file format (done) DVD integration with Impress (OOo's presentation module) Everyone in the community has their "Desert-Island" wish list. These are some I think are important. There are a number of ports that have happened or are in progress. What's the point of porting to fairly obscure OSes like OS/2 or VMS or BeOS? Hiser: There are people who use and love certain environments, and if they choose to support them, it's not mine or anyone's job to interfere with that. It's natural to question the effort to support what people may perceive as "dying" environments, but you know what they say about the fat lady? It's classic Open Source "scratch your own itch." Who knows, maybe BeOS will get open-sourced and become the ideal third-gen OS? I suggest you ask our valuable contributor, Kevin Hendricks up in Canada, why he runs the Linux port for PowerPC. It's a small market, per se, if you're a corporate-type reading the numbers. But its critical to Kevin and to anyone who wants to run Linux on Mac hardware -- a growing segment, and for technically good reason. I've been wanting to thank Kevin personally for his great commitment because his work just enabled me to revive an early G3 Powerbook and run it with all the apps (GNOME, Evolution on YDL) like my main workstation. Thanks Kevin! It's the people like Kevin and Ed Peterlin on the Mac OS X port who are each pulling three oars on this project --one in their teeth. ;-) It's funny: where Mac and OpenOffice.org passions overlap you get a certain form of combustion. Unique. It's really a great privilege to be a part of this project. What kind of volunteers does the OpenOffice.org team still need? Hiser: The community is always looking for developers (C++) to pick up part of a project, users to complain like mad, and marketers who believe in this great product and its potential. Frankly, it hasn't been hard to recruit contributors of surprisingly high quality ... the smart folks are self-selecting. But there's a lot to do and we need to increase our depth because it's a volunteer project. What do you think of the other non-Microsoft office suites out there? Has StarOffice's decision to start charging for its software boosted OpenOffice.org? What do you think of other offices suites such as Hancom Office, etc.? Hiser: StarOffice 6.0 costs money: Can't tell about the impact on Ooo -- probably favorable -- but we see how it helped StarOffice 6.0 in its markets. Some onlookers were surprised that the general response to Sun's fee strategy with StarOffice 6.0 was so positive from customers. But you have to put yourself in the shoes of the enterprise IT executive: they have been getting reamed with only a single vendor for HOW many years? Their view was longer-term, beyond the mere cost, and they were ecstatic that the new licensing scheme reflected Sun's commitment to a financially viable, competitive product that would be sustainable. The other suites -- the Open Source ones -- are good ... it's hard to fault their efforts on Linux. AbiWord, Hancom and KOffice, the ones that come first to mind, are quite solid and nice to use. OOo is simply a different animal. Its presence doesn't stop at Linux -- as important as the two are for each other. It also has these substantial multi-lingual, multi-platform advantages; and OOo deals with MS Office file formats pretty completely by comparison to the other suites. Linux Format, the UK magazine, had a very thorough runoff recently in which OOo performed top, if you pay attention to comparisons. Honestly, just OOo/SO's file format is enough to make governments around the world swoon. It's because, ex-USA, they are very nervous about a single entity (and an American one, to boot) controlling, like, noticeable portions of their national budgets and they just want to be sure that their citizens have open access to information forever. OpenOffice.org 1.0 / StarOffice 6.0 do that. It's quite a lot. What's next for the project? What's the immediate focus? Hiser: I must admit that the OOo version for Mac OS X has significant tangible as well as karmic value to the community and brings with it a passionate and interesting group of users -- if you go by those "Switch" commercials. ;-) It's going to be interesting for us all to watch during the next 18-month roadmap toward Aqua integration. Ed Peterlin and Dan Williams, just two of our contributing developers, could use a few more able hands with Unix and Mac know-how on that port. Ed, by the way, is not Canadian. Focus on housekeeping: peer-to-peer distribution; internal community governance structure. Keep building the Native Lang communities. OOo has user/developer/marketer communities that conduct intercourse in: Dutch Spanish French Brazilian Portuguese German Italian This is where the fabric of the community of OOo is so strong. "E Pluribus Unum," ring any bells? This is a product with a distinct footprint in every locality--rich or poor. Figure out where to put the money people keep offering us. On the Marketing Project: implement the User and Consultant Surveys to get a better understanding of our users and some good data. Users everywhere! Please answer the User Survey at installation time. It's tremendously valuable to the community's effort to rapidly improve the software. Also, we have this great global Marketing Contacts network, this web of people on the Marketing Project who interface with users and potential users locally in each region. It's a super group of individuals -- really passionate, most whom I have never met in person -- and the network helps us keep our message uniform and in sync (and translated into about half a dozen languages) across the time zones on days like today when we have a press release. My biggest challenge is to get the time zone conversions right ... and when I don't the "MarCon" people are there to make it happen smoothly. ;-) Bet you can't guess what 10:00 a.m. San Francisco time is in UTC? What's the long-term goal? Where would you like to see OpenOffice.org in five years? Hiser: My colleagues may hold a different view, but in 2007 I see OOo, together with all its derivatives, owning to six nines 99.9999% of the non-corporate global office suite market, and about ... uhm ... 50% of the corporate market. That'll do. That'll do. © Newsforge.com
Grant Gross, 16 Oct 2002

Pensioner gets five years for German cashpoint scam

A German pensioner who failed to sell banks his encryption scheme for ATM machines has been convicted of counterfeiting credit and debit cards. The 71-old (nicknamed 'The Professor') was sentenced last Friday by Munich's State Court to four years and ten months in jail for creating 671 fake cards, which he used subsequently used to make illegal withdrawals, AP reports. Among his victims was a judge working on the case, who stepped down after discovering he had attempted to defraud her. Three years ago, the professor developed an encryption system for use by ATM cards which banks rejected as too expensive. Stung by this rejection, the pensioner turned his hand to crime. And look where it got him. ®
John Leyden, 16 Oct 2002

IBM, HDS, Sun, VERITAS form storage management gang

Hitachi Data Systems, IBM, Sun Microsystems and VERITAS Software Corporation announced on Tuesday "a new effort dedicated to the promotion and progress of SNIA's Common Information Model (CIM), Web-Based Enterprise Management (WBEM) technology and Storage Management Initiative (SMI) specifications (formerly Bluefin) for Storage Area Network (SAN)-based storage management". A quick glance at the participating organisations immediately highlights the fact that certain other leading vendors, for instance EMC, Hewlett Packard, Legato, CA and Fujitsu Softek, are not to be found amongst the launch membership. It has been reported that both HP and EMC were approached to join the initiative and that HP refused to join up. The four members state that the effort is open to all storage vendors. A glance at the group's stated objectives perhaps indicates that there is little of substance behind the new initiative. Participating vendors are expected to ship CIM/WBEM based storage management software commercially in calendar year 2003, support the emerging SMI specifications endorsed by the Storage Networking Industry Association (SNIA), make their CIM Providers (SMI Agents) available to others for testing, conduct joint interoperability testing and qualifications and support the CIM/WBEM interface as specified by SNIA' s Distributed Management Task Force (DMTF). In fact, nearly all of these requirements are part of the standards based approach that the SNIA and its members are currently pursuing. In fact, all of the parties involved in the new initiative are active members of the SNIA as are the vast majority of storage suppliers. Until recently the only viable route via which vendors could produce management tools capable of working in heterogeneous environments has involved suppliers making bilateral agreements to swap management APIs with each other. In these days when litigation is an almost everyday occurrence, it is frequently difficult for vendors to make such agreements with as many of their competitors as users would wish. The SNIA and its members are working to architect and promote truly open standards that will provide the cross platform functionality desperately needed by end users. Unfortunately, the SNIA's standards will only slowly provide the heterogeneous capabilities that are needed. Until then, API swapping is very much the order of the day. On the face of it, the announcement from HDS, IBM, VERITAS and SUN adds little, except a few product delivery schedules, to the SNIA's own initiatives. On the positive side, it is always good to see some public signs of cooperation from otherwise very competitive companies. © IT-Analysis.com Related Story Standards Ahoy! Bluefin and CIM products out next year
IT-Analysis, 16 Oct 2002

Text me, Sex me, my porn star baby

With news still fresh that Vodafone believes many people use text messages to "enhance their love lives", here's something that might be of interest to the monster mobileco. NASDAQ-listed Private Media Group has launched an adult SMS service that gives punters access to their favourite porn stars. With the Private Stars service customers pay to receive personalised adult text messages from porn stars. They then get a code via SMS to access a new portal, www.privatestars.com, which offers XXX pictures, SMS content and raunchy videos. The service is due to be launched in the UK first and rolled out later to other countries. In a statement Charles Prast, President and CEO of Private Media Group, said: "With over one billion mobile phone users worldwide and around fifty billion text messages sent every month, we believe the consumer market for subscribed wireless adult media has enormous potential." ® Related Story 'Explicit' ads floor Vodafone
Tim Richardson, 16 Oct 2002

MS kills another clip-art fan rave

Microsoft has yanked another of its fraudulent user testimonials, in this case a fictitious twelve-year-old boy raving about a fictional homework assignment and the indespensable insights he received from MS Encarta Reference Library in preparing it. Judging by his phony picture he's one of those fussy, antiseptic, precocious little boys that mothers adore and fathers get used to. This one's a seventh-grader who writes just as a university graduate with a degree in 'communications' (i.e., public relations) would do. Funny that. He's been assigned not just a report but "a presentation on a historical novel," and has wisely chosen Dickens' A Tale of Two Cities, "a book about the French Revolution," he explains to the proles. Meanwhile he's comfortable with such words as 'insight', 'synopsis', 'thematic', 'compile', 'foreshadowing' and 'mockup'. And he's absolutely sold on Encarta. "The [Encarta] guide for A Tale of Two Cities helped me to consider some things about the book that I might not have noticed just reading it once," our little pencil geek confesses with modesty, "like asking me to look for thematic images and foreshadowing like the red sunset falling on the French palace." Oh, yeah; that one slipped past me when I was twelve, too. Fortunately my older brother pointed it out between innings of stickball and my academic career was saved. But there's more to Encarta than Cliff's Notes, we're assured. It's actually a fabulous resource for quotable quotes and theftworthy images, which our brat exploits to advantage. He's got to produce a poster to embellish his presentation, and Encarta makes this exercise [sorry, can't resist] child's play. "Just click Features, Articles, and Quotations," he advises. "I typed 'France' and came up with almost 40 quotes including the perfect one for my poster: 'France, mother of arts, of warfare, and of laws' by a Renaissance poet named Joachim du Bellay." [What? nothing from Corneille?] Then of course there's a wealth of clip-art, just like himself: "I should mention that the historical map of France from the Interactive World Atlas and the drawing of Louis XVI from the Multimedia/Photos section, both of which I printed, made a stunning centerpiece for my poster," the little wretch enthuses. A 'stunning centerpiece'. Martha Stewart will have to lay that one away. But that's not all. You also get crucial shallow insights into political history with which to flesh out your book-report 'presentations'. "The Timeline feature was compiled by some of the world's leading historians. Just click Features, Timelines, Timeline Center, and Dynamic Timeline to bring up a timeline for a specific period--in my case, the 1780s and 1790s. By clicking any of the elements on the timeline, you open a new window that gives you a brief description of the event along with a list of related links that offer more information on the topic. This led me to something I didn't previously know about: the Declaration of the Rights of Man and Citizen, which I realized was an important element of the French Revolution and would make a great addition to my poster." At least, thank God, he didn't call it la Déclaration des Droits de l'Homme et du Citoyen. So we've learned two things here. One is that the Microsoft marketing and PR departments are experiencing considerable difficulty distinguishing fact from fiction. But we always knew that. The other is that, while Encarta may speed up the synthesis of predictable observations, it offers precious little guidance in matters of taste. That Renaissance quote our fake juvenile over-achiever is so proud of comes from what has to be one of the piss-poorest nationalist threnodies ever written. ® France, mère des arts France, mère des arts, des armes et des lois, Tu m'as nourri longtemps du lait de ta mamelle: Ores, comme un agneau qui sa nourrice appelle, Je remplis de ton nom les antres et les bois. Si tu m'as pour enfant avoué quelquefois, Que ne me réponds-tu maintenant, ô cruelle? France, France, réponds à ma triste querelle. Mais nul, sinon Écho, ne répond à ma voix. Entre les loups cruels j'erre parmi la plaine, Je sens venir l'hiver, de qui la froide haleine D'une tremblante horreur fait hérisser ma peau. Las, tes autres agneaux n'ont faute de pâture, Ils ne craignent le loup, le vent, ni la froidure: Si ne suis-je pourtant le pire du troupeau. -- Joachim du Bellay, 1558 Note: Reader Patrick Smears sends us this original translation, brimming with enviable literary sensitivity: France, Mother of the Arts Oh Arts laws and wars are your hits, I've suckled for years on your tits, Now I'm calling to you, Like a lamb for its ewe, Disturbing the beasts in their pits. Though you called me your kid yesteryear Now you won't even answer I fear. Cruel country of mine, Respond to my whine! But only an echo I hear. I wander the plains wolves and all, While winter's beginning to fall, Wind smelly and cold Brings horror untold And it's making my skin start to crawl. Your other tired lambs all get fed, And don't fear the wolves while in bed, You let them grow old Without wind and cold So am I the worst one you've bred?
Thomas C Greene, 16 Oct 2002

Sklyarov denied US visa to testify in DMCA case

Dmitry Sklyarov, the Russian programmer at the centre of the first Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) prosecution, has been denied a US visa in a move that jeopardises his requirement to testify in the forthcoming trial of his former employers, ElcomSoft. ElcomSoft's chief executive, Alexander Katalov, has likewise been denied a visa, Planet PDF reports, in a move that surely means the already delayed October 21 start of the trial will be put back still further. ElcomSoft is charged with supplying a tool that circumvents the copy protection in Adobe eBooks, which can be used in making audible copies of e-books for the blind, or copies of legitimately purchased electronic books. ElcomSoft's Advanced eBook Processor, which is legal in Russia, was sold over the Internet (though it has since been taken off the market). Sklyarov was also indicted in the case, and spent a month in a US jail (and four months on bail) before striking a deal that allowed him to return to Russia in exchange for testifying in any case against ElcomSoft. That agreement, thanks to the refusal of Sklyarov's visa is now in jeopardy, and he faces the Kafkaesque dilemma of been legally unable to enter the States to attend a trial he is legally obliged to testify in. 'Crime' and punishment Sklyarov was arrested and slung into jail in July 2001 following a court case instigated by Adobe. The California software company pulled the legal trigger in response to a presentation made by the Russian programmer pointing out the shortcomings of eBook security at last year's Defcon conference in Las Vegas. He faced charges punishable by up to 25 years in jail and a $250,000 fine. Adobe attracted huge opprobrium for its actions, and in the face of a self-inflicted public relations nightmare, quickly withdrew support for prosecution. However, the Department of Justice took up the reins. Even though Sklyarov was released on bail of $50,000 in August, he still had to remain in the US until December, when a deal was made. The case against ElcomSoft and Sklyarov has become a cause célèbre among white hat hackers, who objected to jailing a programmer simply for coding and distributing software. There were also concerns that, at the behest of the entertainment industry, the DMCA was applied in a way which would stymie legitimate security research and prevent 'fair use' of copyrighted material. Civil liberties groups, most notably the Electronic Frontier Foundation, and Internet activists have also campaigned hard on Sklyarov's behalf. ®
John Leyden, 16 Oct 2002

Do you need a storage security appliance?

The Register's new Enterprise Storage Channel Despite the high profile that all security matters currently hold, little attention has been paid to the protection of data storage platforms at source. It is into this arena that a small US vendor, Decru, has started to make a mark. Based in Redwood City, California, Decru was founded in April 2001 with the aim of producing security appliances designed to protect information held on networked data storage systems from any unauthorised access. The utilisation of networked storage platforms has grown enormously in the last few years with both Networked Attached Storage (NAS) and Storage Area Networks (SAN) being increasingly deployed to handle the storage requirements of mission critical systems. Indeed, most predictions of future usage indicate that direct attached storage (DASD) will rapidly be superseded in importance on networked storage platforms. These new storage architectures allow much more sophisticated management of data to take place and it is increasingly common for data held on either NAS or SAN devices to be replicated elsewhere in the name of business continuance. Clearly with data volumes growing alarmingly and data being replicated around the globe the potential for unauthorised access is rising. All data stored on storage devices is, by default, held in clear text format - meaning that if you can see the disk you can read the data. Decru offers two appliances to help address security concerns with its DataFort E440 for NAS platforms and DataFort FC440 for SAN systems. These devices encrypt and decrypt data utilising a custom hardware engine, 256-bit AES technology and a True Random Number Generator to scramble data. Importantly, the devices are claimed to operate at 'wire' speed to ensure that the device itself does not become a bottleneck. With the safety and security of information matters of paramount importance, it will be interesting to see if Decru manages to pull in sales from its key target customers, especially in the finance and governmental sectors; with little recognition outside of the US the company will need to partner with some resellers in the short term. Equally, with vendor consolidation very much a fact of everyday business life, it is likely that if Decru succeeds in raising its profile sufficiently, one or another of the major storage vendors may take a look at both the technology and the company. © IT-Analysis.com
IT-Analysis, 16 Oct 2002

Silvermead launches Sat broadband next month

Yet another ISP is to offer broadband via a one-way satellite service bringing high-speed Net access to people all over the country. Silvermead's service is due to go live next month and can work using an existing Sky TV satellite dish. The monthly fee for the service - which also includes an unmetered dial-up service to upload data - costs £34.99 a month. Start-up costs start from £150 which includes the cost of a mini-dish (if needed), satellite modem, software and installation. Punters who don't want to retain their own dial-up ISP can do so, but the download element will still set them back £29.99 a month. The satellite service is being run in association with Cyprus-based PlanetSky. The great selling point for all the satellite-based broadband services is its widespread availability - especially in areas not served by cable or DSL services. In the last couple of weeks a handful of ISPs have come forward plugging their one-way satellite broadband services. Hampshire-based SatDrive is offering its service for £14.99 a month. Elsewhere, independent satellite broadband provider Isonetric Broadband, is offering its 1Mbps service for £30 a-month. And Everywhere! Broadband's service starts at £19.95 a month with installation costs from £99. ® Related Stories Everywhere! starts taking sat ISP sign-ups Broadband Sat service for £14.99 UK to get Sat broadband for £30
Tim Richardson, 16 Oct 2002

Trap blackhat hackers with IT-Minds

It's all gone a bit Mata Hari this week at Reg associate IT-minds.com. Our favourite online bookshop is offering an insight into how to lure blackhat hackers to a sticky end with Honeypots: Tracking Hackers. This ultimate guide to a rapidly growing, cutting-edge technology will teach you the skills you need to deploy the best honeypot solutions for your environment. Available to all Register visitors at £:24.49 - a saving of 30 per cent. Just in case you're new to this Honeypots business, you can also get the original Know Your Enemy at £:21.69 - also a 30 per cent discount. This book shares the lessons of the two-year Honeynet Project, in which leading security professionals built networks designed to be compromised - and learned everything possible from the blackhat hackers who took the bait: their tools, their tactics, and their motives. And, the following books are available at the same 30 per cent discount this week. The first four titles are from a new face at IT-Minds - Manning Publications. This company specialises in Java and Perl, so there's plenty in there for the programming fraternity: Extending and Embedding Perl Web Development with Apache and Perl Java Development with Ant JSTL in Action Applied Java Patterns BEA WebLogic Workshop Designing CSS Web Pages Sams Teach Yourself Network Troubleshooting in 24 Hours And don't forget, Register visitors can still get ALL other books from IT-minds.com at a 20 per cent discount. 7reg;
Team Register, 16 Oct 2002

Feelies with Intel's Mr Banias

Microprocessor ForumMicroprocessor Forum Mooly Eden, the director of Intel's Israel Mobile Platform Group, dared us to see how cool the Banias mobile chip really is yesterday, in the queue for salad. "Would you touch it?" he asked. The machine, a Banias test rig has been on for at least an hour, we reckoned. It wasn't being taxed by its demo, but nevertheless, we don't go around touching Intel processors for fun. "Go on, touch it!" Finally Intel had a chance not only for revenge for years of ribbing, but to brand us permanently, we thought. But touch it we did, and guess what? It was as cold as an iceberg. So Banias is cool and Mooly's a riot. He uses proscribed Register words, including "Screaming SIMD" instructions, but not, we presume, "Itanic". It must be a lot of fun over there. Mooly heads 600 staff and explains that much of the motivation for Banias comes from members of the Timna team. Timna, you'll recall, was the integrated duck a l'orange , oops system-on-a-chip that was intended to create low costs systems. This canard failed to quack, and instead croaked a couple of years ago. Mooly said that wasn't because it was a technical failure, but there simply wasn't a business case. Memory proved to be too expensive. However the Timna team were determined to prove the jesters wrong. Ground-up Banias Eden unpeeled some more Banias details yesterday. It's a platform, not a chip he said. The first chips will have a 400Mhz bus, and come in two flavors of chipset: Odem, which includes support 4xAGP, and Montara-GM, which has integrated graphics support. Both include integrated 802.11a/b networking, called Calexico. The first generation debuts in the first half of next year at 0.13 micron and will be superseded by 0.09 micron processors at … well, the arrow on his PowerPoint slide points to Christmas 2003. Eden said that better branch prediction algorithms had reduced mispredictions by 20 per cent. More interestingly, he described how a voltage regulator shuts down different portions of the CPU according to demand. For example, when there's a cache miss, the execution unit is shut down, because the microprocessor knows it's not going to be used for a few cycles. The CPU also issues a sleep command, and the chipset will snoop the bus and wake it up two clocks in advance, when it knows there's data arriving. You can find his presentation [5MB PDF] here. Blades Mooly told us it was reasonable to expect blade manufacturers to incorporate Banias. No, he told The Register, it didn't support SMP at the moment, but they weren't ruling anything out. "Not in the first generation in the family. We look at all kinds of techniques but we're not initially supporting it." We told him we'd like to see a low power, low cost SMP since Intel hasn't offered one of these since it disabled SMP support from the PIII Celeron family after the 533Mhz iteration. People still run these, and they're very popular. Intel insists that its current offerings trump anything Transmeta has to offer both on power and performance. It also says PIII-M continues to pick up the lion's share of design wins. However the Crusoe has a long and growing list of licensees, and features in several new Tablet designs. Tablet OEMs seem to like Crusoe a lot. So why, a fellow journalist asked, did Transmeta keep picking up these design wins. Mooly said it wasn't just for technical reasons. Ah, we joked: perhaps Transmeta using its financial might to bully little Intel out of the mobile market? This gag went down faster than a Banias CPU instruction unit after a SLEEP command. ® Related Stories Yes! We now have Banias! < ahref="http://www.theregister.co.uk/content/3/21313.html">Intel goes bananas over Banias Intel says there's more to like than speed Intel Banias SoC part to ensure PIII lives on
Andrew Orlowski, 16 Oct 2002