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"The Techtopus": Much bigger than we realized

Mark Ames follows up on The Techtopus (previously) with a new report showing a much larger conspiracy than has been previously reported: [more inside]
posted by tonycpsu on Mar 22, 2014 - 74 comments

Tech rivals unite against surveillance

Facebook, Google, Yahoo, Microsoft, Apple, LinkedIn and Aol have all teamed up to oppose widespread government surveillance. In an open letter to the US president and members of congress, the companies urge the government to reform its digital spy apparatus. Live reactions at the Guardian.
posted by brina on Dec 9, 2013 - 126 comments

Smartphone Wars Go Nuclear

It begins. A consortium of mobile phone makers including Apple, Microsoft, Blackberry, Ericsson and Sony have launched a barrage of patent suits against Google and major Android handset makers such as Samsung, Huawei and HTC. Unlike previous patent suits from the major shareholders, these suits are on the rocket docket of Eastern Texas.
posted by Talez on Nov 1, 2013 - 100 comments

Alternatives to Microsoft, Yahoo, Google, Facebook, PalTalk, AOL, etc.

Microsoft, Yahoo, Google, Facebook, PalTalk, AOL, Skype, YouTube, Apple are being monitored by the FBI and NSA, with Dropbox "coming soon." So what can you do? Use some alternatives. As Gabriel Weinberg, founder of DuckDuckGo, told NPR: "we made the choice to just not track people so there is nothing to turn over."
posted by filthy light thief on Jun 26, 2013 - 118 comments

"a watchful eye on technology and marketing"

Back in the day, Ken Segall helped create Apple's Think Different campaign and helped name the iMac. More recently he worked on JC Penney's Yours Truly, commercial, before JCP ousted Ron Johnson as its CEO. He writes a sharp, entertaining blog called Ken Segall's Observatory, where he offers opinions on advertising and design geekery. His take on Ron Johnson's failure is interesting, as is this post on what it takes for an advertisement to stand out in a crowd. He calls attention to surprisingly decent ads from Microsoft and Dell, critiques terrible ads (from Microsoft and JC Penney and even Apple, and comments on whether skeuomorphism has its advantages. He's also fond of discussing product names. Give this one a skip if advertising gives you hives, but for those of you who're interested in things like this Segall's blog is especially choice stuff.
posted by Rory Marinich on May 3, 2013 - 26 comments

Does any of this seem familiar to anyone else?

Michael Dell, with the help of a $2 billion dollar investment from Microsoft, is taking Dell private. Dell was once a $100 billion company, but has fallen behind HP and Lenovo in marketshare in the post-PC era. This is the largest leveraged buyout since 2007. [more inside]
posted by entropicamericana on Feb 5, 2013 - 70 comments

CES 2013

The International Consumer Electronics Show has been hosted in some form or fashion since 1967. But with the absence of Amazon, Apple, Google, and Microsoft, journalists are asking if the show is still relevant.
posted by zabuni on Jan 8, 2013 - 74 comments

Benn Jordan tries using the DMCA

“These companies are willing to shove 1,000 attorneys down your throat if you share music, but won’t even respond to a legal order about actual music theft and piracy.” -Benn Jordan [via] [more inside]
posted by jeffburdges on Oct 17, 2012 - 23 comments

The Work Anywhere Theory, in Practice

A year ago, programmer Mark O'Connor decided to swap his MacBook for an iPad and a Linode VPS (Virtual Private Server) development environment. Today, he discusses the success of his experiment.
posted by gilrain on Sep 19, 2012 - 79 comments

The original different thinker.

Jack Goldman died this month. Mac? Windows? X11? You may think of visionaries who shaped technology as you know it. You might imagine that they were the original thinkers or visionary businessmen. You're wrong. The guy who laid the foundations started out trying to invent the electric car at Ford, before being hired to Xerox creating the legendary PARC labs that invented computing as we know it; he lived to see his prediction that "...any electric car produced in our lifetime will have to be a hybrid" come true.
posted by rodgerd on Dec 24, 2011 - 17 comments

Gone in a Flash

Microsoft announced today that Internet Explorer 10, part of Windows 8 and a massive UI and structural redesign, will come in two flavors: a desktop app that will continue "to fully support all plug-ins and extensions, " and the flagship version intended for touchscreen devices called Metro, which will be as "HTML5-only as possible, and plug-in free". Specifically, Metro won't support Adobe Flash. [more inside]
posted by 2bucksplus on Sep 15, 2011 - 157 comments

What's in a name? Would an app store by any other name smell as sweet?

Who owns the term "app store"? Apple wants to, but Amazon and Microsoft, among others, think it is generic. Will Steve Jobs's own words come to haunt him? In any case, the first casualty of the fight between giants seems to be Amahi, a small open-source media server. [more inside]
posted by kmz on Jun 22, 2011 - 98 comments

The Tortoise And The Hare And The Hare And The Tortoise

Apple's revenues and net earnings for the first calendar quarter of 2011 both beat the reported sales and profits of its rival Microsoft for the first time in recent history. It's been an epic rivalry between these two computer tech giants. Apple had an early lead, was overtaken by Microsoft in a rather spectacular fashion. And then, slowly, like a guerilla campaign from distant provinces, Apple came back. At least by one measure - earnings - a measure that seemed destined to always be in Microsoft's favor, Apple has now taken the lead. [more inside]
posted by VikingSword on Apr 28, 2011 - 336 comments

HTML 5 Circus

Mozilla's HTML 5 Circus rolls into town. The emergence of HTML 5 is marked by, among others, emerging browsers (or browser versions). The soon to be released Firefox 4, often delayed, mirrors the slow march to an HTML 5 Flash reduced web. Like others, Mozilla feels the need to sell HTML 5. We also have Chrome Experiments, Canvas Demos, IE HTML 5 demos and Never Mind the Bullets, and Apple's (warning: sniffer protected) HTML 5 showcase. [more inside]
posted by juiceCake on Mar 6, 2011 - 102 comments

Video Wars, round II

We expect even more rapid innovation in the web media platform in the coming year and are focusing our investments in those technologies that are developed and licensed based on open web principles. To that end, we are changing Chrome’s HTML5 <video> support to make it consistent with the codecs already supported by the open Chromium project. Specifically, we are supporting the WebM (VP8) and Theora video codecs, and will consider adding support for other high-quality open codecs in the future. Though H.264 plays an important role in video, as our goal is to enable open innovation, support for the codec will be removed and our resources directed towards completely open codec technologies. - Google's Chrome is will be joining Firefox in no longer licensing the MPEG-LA H.264 video codec favoured by Apple and Microsoft for use in the HTML5 <video> tag (previously). Not everyone is seeing this as a good thing.
posted by Artw on Jan 13, 2011 - 145 comments

Apple jailbreaks itself

Apple Inc. is making a version of its iPhone that Verizon Wireless will sell early next year, according to people familiar with the matter, ending an exclusive deal with AT&T and sharpening the competition with Google Inc.-based phones. [more inside]
posted by Joe Beese on Oct 7, 2010 - 99 comments

"Seiri, Seiton, Seisō, Seiketsu, Shitsuke and Safety"

The National Labor Committee, a watchdog group that investigates working conditions at foreign factories producing goods for US corporations, has released a report on the KYE Factory in Guangdong, China. KYE manufactures outsourced products for Microsoft (their biggest customer), HP, Best Buy, Samsung, Foxconn, Acer, Logitech, and ASUS. The report focuses heavily on the workers producing Microsoft products. In response, Microsoft says they will investigate the allegations, as their vendor code of conduct (pdf) bans much of the abuses uncovered by the report. Photo Slideshow / NLC report summary [more inside]
posted by zarq on Apr 15, 2010 - 55 comments

Look at this stuff. It's airtight.

Almost Everything by Kirby Ferguson: A web series featuring a good-natured Canadian geek who uses slick, fast-paced video presentations to comment on the world's ills. Episodes: Apple's Stealth Jabs at Microsoft - Protecting and Maintaining Your Heterosexual House of Cards - Americans Love Lists - Trajan is the Movie Font - Thank You For All the Butt Cracks - Passive Resistance, Like Gandhi - Punchline Piracy - The Fag Bomb - I Love Progress Bars - Slumdog Controversy - The Distraction Machine - Talent is Hard Work - 2012 and the Conspiracy Conspiracy - I Don't Care About Tiger Woods' Penis (An Open Letter to the American Media). Like the background music? The full soundtrack by Windom Earle is available for preview or download on Amazon. A product of Goodiebag.tv (YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, blog, more videos).
posted by Rhaomi on Apr 7, 2010 - 11 comments

The new browser video wars

The <video tag>, as defined by the HTML5 spec, is an element "used for playing videos or movies". Which codec those videos or movies are in is currently undefined, with the two contenders being the free open source Ogg Theora and the proprietary H.264. With the unveiling of Internet Explorer 9 both Microsoft and Apple are supporting H.264 in their browsers, and comparisons of the standards seem to bear out H.264 as the better of the two. However Mozilla have taken a stance against incorporating H264 into Firefox on the grounds that it is patented and has to be licensed. Arguments are now being made for and against Mozilla sticking to its ideals. John Gruber of Daring Fireball points out that Firefox already supports proprietary formats such as GIF. Um, perhaps not the best example.
posted by Artw on Mar 21, 2010 - 140 comments

Sienfeld wants you to buy Vista, Shatner wants you to buy a Vic 20

Celebrity computer endorsements throughout the ages.
posted by Artw on Aug 21, 2008 - 65 comments

Playsforsuren't

The Day the Music Died The Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) [...] has also been warning anyone who would listen that they should not “purchase” encrypted music from these services, since if these services go under then all that “purchased” music will no longer… what’s the word… “play”. But mostly people ignored them (and me), because, you know, Microsoft was at the center of it all, and nobody ever got fired for “buying” from Microsoft.
posted by desjardins on May 7, 2008 - 67 comments

The software patent cold war is getting less cold

[Patent Lawsuit Filter] On Wednesday Sun Microsystems announced a counter suit against Network Appliance, wherein they will draw on their "defensive portfolio" which is "one of the largest patent arsenals on the internet". They are going to be requesting a permanent injunction to remove all of NetApp's filer products from the marketplace, and also seeking monetary damages (half of which they've pledged to donate to the Software Freedom Law Center and Peer to Patent Project). Last month, NetApp sued Sun for patent infringements in ZFS. Earlier this month in Texas, the first ever patent infringement lawsuit against Linux distributors was filed. [more inside]
posted by finite on Oct 26, 2007 - 36 comments

Jobs and Gates interviewed together at the D5 conference

The Bill and Steve show: Jobs and Gates sit down together and discuss the past, present and future at the D5 conference.
posted by jaimev on May 30, 2007 - 12 comments

So, which way is up?

Innovation, originality, revolution... Oh.
posted by Blazecock Pileon on May 14, 2007 - 23 comments

Don't speak / I know just what you're saying

Speak n Spell your way into remote control of a Vista box.
posted by Blazecock Pileon on Feb 1, 2007 - 24 comments

A photo tour of Microsoft's Mac Lab

Welcome to Microsoft's Mac Lab.
posted by nakedcodemonkey on Apr 21, 2006 - 27 comments

Jobs & Gates to Tie The Knot. (Sort of.)

Dual Boot, Officially. Now that the contest is over, it could be time for both sides of the Cola OS War to put aside their differences and shake hands ... though not without a little good-natured snark: "Macs use an ultra-modern industry standard technology called EFI to handle booting. Sadly, Windows XP, and even the upcoming Vista, are stuck in the 1980s with old-fashioned BIOS. But with Boot Camp, the Mac can operate smoothly in both centuries." Oooooh ... burn.
posted by grabbingsand on Apr 5, 2006 - 102 comments

Can you spare a dollar or two billion for the lesser off?

Bill Gates or Steve Jobs? Who is changing the world more for the better? Some people believe Bill Gates and Microsoft are the Spawn of Satan, while others praise him for his philanthropy. [subs. req'd] Steve Jobs has more buzz on the internets than Bill Gates and a near religious following for his products with Apple. One might not give like the other, but one definitely is much more Zen-like.
posted by Mijo Bijo on Jan 25, 2006 - 92 comments

#1-Google, #2-Apple, #3-Microsoft

"A look at the average number of page views per title reveals that Microsoft gets about half as many page views per title as compared to Google and Apple" a strong indication of where reader interest actually resides." - ZDNet. Intelliseek's Blogpulse reveals similar numbers: #1 Google: 473K, #2 Apple: 381K, #3 Microsoft: 262K. Venture capitalist, Ed Sim, says: "While the OS is important, Microsoft has lost its complete and utter dominance as we move to a service-oriented world where broadband is everywhere, apps are in the cloud, and the browser becomes king."
posted by spock on Jul 27, 2005 - 19 comments

Keeping the doctor away, Redmond style

Microsoft wipes Apple from the face of the Earth. Virtual Earth, that is. A search for "1 Infinite Loop, Cupertino, CA" renders only an empty field and some sort of barn. This is what it really looks like. Finding that other microcomputer company is obviously not a problem. Microsoft blames old photographs (from 1991) for the omission, but copyright notices on the images go only as far back as last year.
posted by goodnewsfortheinsane on Jul 26, 2005 - 22 comments

Will Intel buy Apple?

The announcement that Apple was moving to Intel hardware was the first move in Intel's take-over of Apple, according to Robert Cringely, giving Intel a platform to compete head-to-head with Microsoft. "This scenario works well for everyone except Microsoft. If Intel was able to own the Mac OS and make it available to all the OEMs, it could break the back of Microsoft. And Apple/Intel could easily extend this to the consumer electronics world. How much would it cost Intel to buy Apple? Not much." More.
posted by bobbyelliott on Jun 10, 2005 - 57 comments

The future of MS, Apple, and Google

The future of Google, Apple, and Microsoft.
posted by Tlogmer on May 13, 2005 - 40 comments

Someone is mad that paid too much for their MCSE

The clueless reviews the Mac Mini His chief gripes are "The Mini boots up into a stripped-down operating system which Apple calls OS X, similar to the stripped-down WindowsCE OS found on many handhelds." and "No serial ports, no way to connect a printer, no PS/2 ports, no floppy drive, no 5.25" bays." Let the hate mail campaign begin!
posted by StormBear on Feb 2, 2005 - 47 comments

Yet another reason to buy a mac

Microsoft to discontinue development of IE for the Mac... Surprisingly this apparently isn't being done because of the low market share for Macintosh, but rather as a side effect of the increasing integration (whether real or alleged) between IE and the Operating System, which on the Mac is closed, so MS can cease development as support for their claims of mandatory integration between browser & OS. I await the next step, mandatory integration between email & OS? IM? Media tools? Net access?
posted by jonson on Jun 13, 2003 - 68 comments

Microsoft announces music service:

Microsoft announces music service: Apple roughed up in playground, candy stolen.
posted by aladfar on Apr 29, 2003 - 37 comments

Who do you want to be told to listen to today?

Coming off the previously-addressed possibility of Apple purchasing Vivendi Music comes the news (if you still call the New York Post that) that Microsoft might want the company too. Are people, especially the online community, going to make this out as a battle between good and evil? Or is Bill Gates' Dance Party a good thing?
posted by XQUZYPHYR on Apr 15, 2003 - 15 comments

Microsoft counters Mac's 'Switch' campaign

Microsoft counters Mac's 'Switch' campaign using the testimony of an unnamed 'freelance writer' who seems to be all sorts of things, including a stock photography model.
posted by Hall on Oct 14, 2002 - 51 comments

Would the Mac platform collapse without Microsoft?

Would the Mac platform collapse without Microsoft? BusinessWeek questions the conventional wisdom.
posted by kirkaracha on Aug 7, 2002 - 42 comments

Celebrate, Windows users, you too can use the world's best MP3 player, with the final release of XPod today, which gives iPod compatiblity to Windows.
And this is not the only option, ephPod does the same thing, but does require you to buy a copy of MacOpener first.
Didn't Apple say they were coming out with their own Windows drivers for iPod eventually?
posted by Mwongozi on Jun 24, 2002 - 19 comments

How Microsoft sells Windows upgrades for Macs.

How Microsoft sells Windows upgrades for Macs. Also, how Microsoft wants to sell software licenses for people who don't even have computers. via LGF
posted by mr_crash_davis on May 16, 2002 - 9 comments

MacOS X comes of age.

MacOS X comes of age. Microsoft has just announced that Microsoft Office will be released for the new Apple OS in the fall. "Analysts had warned that without a version of Office, or similar productivity suite, running natively under Mac OS X, Apple would face problems getting businesses to switch to the new operating system. "
posted by Brilliantcrank on Jan 10, 2001 - 0 comments

Macintouch is reporting that Microsoft has disbanded the IE for Mac team and is discontinuing development of IE for Mac. So much for a 5 year commitment....
posted by faisal on May 12, 2000 - 19 comments

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