$99 iPhone Arrives, But Not at Walmart

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

There was a News some days back saying the Iphone will be sold at Wallmart which was said by an Wallmart employee. Everyone were very eager to buy iphone at wallmart listening to that News. But Now check this out, how abt an iphone costing around 99$.

Now AT&T is knocking out refurbished 8GB iPhones at $99 apiece, and 16GB models for $199.

That AT&T is selling refurbs is nothing special -- both AT&T and Apple are veterans of the refurb game and some great bargains can be had. That Walmart's iPhone price is not $99, as some gullible people believed, is equally non-shocking.

But the fact that Walmart, a company known for squeezing every penny out of its suppliers, managed to knock Apple down just $2 is astonishing. We wouldn't be surprised if this discount is actually coming out of Walmart's pocket.

And even apple is very good at negotiation. Lets look forward and stay tuned.


The 9 hottest skills for '09

Monday, December 29, 2008

This is the survey of ComputerWorld.com.
Almost US Economy is in its worst and millions of Americans are Job less. But still some technologies have a strong demand the market of IT.Technologies like SAP,.NET and Helpdesk/Support remain strong.And while some employers will continue to look outside their companies to find workers with expertise in these and other disciplines, some CIOs are building some of this know-how internally as hiring freezes become more common.

Have a look at the survey done by Computerworld.com

1. Programming/application development

Ask any recruiter what the single most sought-after IT skill is at the moment, and the universal response is a three-letter word: SAP.

"The little joke in our industry right now is that if you have 'SAP' on your résumé right now, you have zero unemployment," says Bruce Culbert, CEO of iSymmetry Inc., an IT consulting and recruitment firm with offices in Washington and Alpharetta, Ga.

SAP experts, particularly those who are experienced with a specific module in a certain industry, are commanding $35 to $40 per hour more on average than other types of senior technicians, says Culbert. Demand for SAP skills has remained red hot because a growing number of companies are working toward establishing global instances of the ERP system, says Jill Herrin, president of IT recruiter JDResources Inc.

But not far behind is demand for IT professionals with .Net experience, say Herrin and other observers. Some companies that relied on offshore labor to deliver .Net and C# capabilities just a few years ago found that route to be "nonproductive," says Herrin. Now they're looking to fill those jobs in-house, she says.

Rich Schappert, senior director of IT at Casey's General Stores Inc. in Ankeny, Iowa, says he has been filling the retailer's demand for .Net and SQL Server programmers for the past five years by recruiting and training local college students. The company, which operates 1,500-plus stores across the Midwest, has been moving its Cobol-based financial applications into the .Net environment to reduce its mainframe costs. "[It's also] getting tougher to find people who know Cobol," notes Schappert.

2. Help desk/technical support

Help desk and technical support skills remain in strong demand, particularly for people who offer a blend of deep technical expertise and solid customer-service abilities, says Herrin. "I have lots of customers who tell me their customer service function is broken and they need people with better communication skills," she says.

"One of the things we're seeing a demand for in this space is what we call a JOAT -- a jack-of-all-trades -- somebody who can do break/fix work and a bit of desktop support," says Katherine Spencer Lee, executive director at IT staffing firm Robert Half Technology. Demand for well-rounded technicians tends to become more acute when companies are looking to get more work done with fewer people, she says.

3. Project management

Even though many companies are cutting back on IT projects, there's still robust demand for project managers with solid track records, says Spencer Lee. "A differentiator is whether the person can articulate that they've brought a project in on time -- or, better yet, under budget -- and how they did that," she says.

Project management is one of the areas "that endure all economies and climates, where companies are constantly looking for people who understand the project and the systems development life cycles and make sure the project goals are closely aligned with the business objectives," says Harvey Koeppel, executive director of the Center for CIO Leadership in New York.

Employers also need people with project management certificates, even at the vice president level, according to some headhunters. As of late July, The Computing Technology Industry Association had awarded 20% more Project+ certifications than in the previous year, says Gretchen Koch, director of skills development programs at CompTIA.
4. Networking

The ongoing convergence of voice, e-mail, video, instant messaging and other communications systems will continue to create demand for networking specialists with implementation experience. For example, Scholastic Inc. in New York posted a job opening in November for a network convergence manager to help it create a virtual call center using voice over IP, says Saad Ayub, senior vice president and CIO at the children's education company.

Those types of projects often require new skills as well. In 2008, for example, CRST International Inc. moved from a frame-relay network to AT&T's Multiprotocol Label Switching network and installed Cisco's VoIP system. As part of that project, the Cedar Rapids, Iowa-based transportation company trained some of its IT staffers to become Cisco Certified Voice Professionals, says Steve Hannah, vice president of IT.

Network convergence projects will also heighten demand for workers with network security and data privacy acumen, Koeppel says, adding that "it's not just pure [network] backbone and infrastructure skills" that are being sought by employers.
5. Business intelligence

Now more than ever, corporate executives want to be able to analyze customer and sales data in order to make informed decisions about business strategies. That's driving demand for business intelligence specialists across the board, including people with data mining, data warehousing and data management skills.

At Aspen Skiing Co., which operates four ski resorts in western Colorado, company officials will be making year-over-year comparisons on customer spending, including analyses of spending habits during the previous recession, says CIO Paul Major. "We're going to have to get very granular with our analytics," he says.

Meanwhile, there's steady demand for IT professionals with experience using vendor-specific BI tools from companies such as Business Objects and Cognos, says Spencer Lee. But the toughest people to find in this area are those who can help business managers understand the type of data they're trying to analyze and how to interpret the results, she says. "What's difficult," she adds, "is to find someone who's the full-meal deal."

6. Security

When it comes to demand for certain types of security professionals, those with SAP security experience "are probably the hottest of the hot right now," says Herrin.

But interest in security professionals remains strong across the board. "Companies can't ignore security requirements, even in tough economic times," says Stephen Pickett, CIO at Penske Corp. and past president of the Society for Information Management.

There's also strong interest in people with network and wireless security skills, as well as those with Certified Information Systems Security Professional accreditation.

7. Web 2.0

While many companies are just starting to noodle with corporate implementations of social networking applications such as MySpace and Facebook, "more and more companies are trying to reach their customers via the Web," says Pickett.

Demand for Web 2.0 skills is also driven by the continuing expansion of business-to-business connections. For instance, Children's Hospital and Health System in Milwaukee recently created a portal for roughly half of its physicians who work remotely. The system provides them with access to summary medical data on patients, says Mike Jones, vice president and CIO.

8. Data center

Most of the glass-house buzz is about server and storage virtualization projects that help organizations lower their energy costs and shrink their data center footprints.

But few companies are recruiting specifically for data center skills. Instead, they're retraining existing staff in VMware and other virtualization technologies. For instance, Aspen Skiing is considering virtualizing up to 40% of its servers in 2009, says Major. To achieve that, Aspen Skiing plans to rely on VMware and EMC to provide staff with the necessary training.

9. Telecommunications

VoIP and projects involving unified communications continue to drive demand for blended telecommunications and networking skills, particularly among small to midsize businesses that are just beginning to deploy these systems, says Spencer Lee. Interest in Wi-Fi, WiMax, Bluetooth and related skills is also growing, says Koeppel, "particularly as cities look to WiMax as a feature to attract businesses."


IT Amendment Bill by Lok Sabha

Monday, December 22, 2008

In December 2006,the IT Act Amendment Bill was suggested by The IT ministry/Department of Information Technology (DIT) . However, it was found inadequate and deficient by the Parliamentary Standing Committee that submitted its recommendations in September 2007.

Guys look at this, The Lok Sabha has passed the IT Amendment Bill 2006, which adds provisions to the existing Information Technology Act, 2000. The IT Act was enacted in the year 2000. It contains provisions regarding e-commerce, e-governance, cyber crimes, etc. Publishing and transmitting obscene materials in electronic forms, will now be punishable under the amended IT Bill.

Actually IT Law is a set of legal enactments which is used to process and opening to widespread of information digitally.These legal enactments cover gambit of different aspects relating to computer software, protection of computer software, access and control of digital information, privacy, security, internet access and usage, and electronic commerce.


Underwater robot working on severed internet cables

Well there was the news that cables were cut in the mediteranian sea. And you know what, this is the second time in this year.The earlier cut, in late January, was apparently caused by a ship's anchor. Actually these cables carry above 75 % of all Communication traffic between
Europe and the Middle ease.
As per their thoughts an earthquake or trawler net may be the reason behind this damage.Because of which more than 12 countries has got very slow internet access.
A team of specialist engineers, aided by an underwater robot nicknamed Hector, are working on the problem, which they hope will be fixed by Thursday.


More than 55% of online customers go through a website before they buy a product from the store.

Friday, December 19, 2008

These days Online customers are very keen before they go for their product.What ever online product it may be but they look for reviews from the other customers.
According to research, 81% of online customers go for a review before they buy the product.
Asked what factors they consider when evaluating customer reviews, 63% said that the product has multiple ratings or reviews, 14% that the reviews come from an established source and 3% that it comes from someone the consumer knows.
Most people are reviewing the web of local retail stores before they go physically to the stores.This shows how important it is for the owners of the stores or products, to give sufficient information about thier product on the internet. Guys this could be the mantra for your earnings on online portals.Get the reviews as many as possible for your goods by perfect marketting on internet.


Macworld Expo Ditched by Apple

Guys here its the big news again, Apple Declared the upcoming event of its will be the last time that it gonna exhibit macworld. So i guess this is a very big threat to the mac-world.And also steve jobs will not be addressing the Keynotes which they used to do for the past 10 years.Apple has taken this decision as their customer expectations are increasing day by day and they want to come up with innovative new ways to reach their millions of customers.
According to Rob griffins Macworld.com writes on a website saying that "Unfortunately, it seems to me that Macworld Expo is now like a mall that’s lost its large anchor tenant. While the mall may continue to operate for some period of time, the number of shoppers will decline, smaller retailers will fold up shop, and—eventually—the mall will close with a whimper, leaving people only with memories of what used to be. I hope that’s not the future for Macworld Expo, but I fear that it is."


Wow , Hp with GNU/Linux

Friday, December 12, 2008

Now days of WOW for microsoft doesn't look great. Competetors are giving a tough fight with the updated versions of their softwares. Now its turn of HP to turn down Windows operating systems.
HP is introducing GNU/Linux as an operating system choice for business desktop customers. The offerings are designed to help small businesses enhance their productivity and ease their management of technology.
Hp has come up with Operating system as SUSE Linux with their desktops offering secured and cost-effective options for thier customers.They have included some applications like openoffice.org,Web Browser, Multimedia tools and e-mail , Instant messagin software.
Hp also said that it concentrating on Virtualised browsing solution accross selected business Desktop products.
The thing is if you made any changes to the PC they dont alter the browser settings using a virtual layer. Now a days Internet is the primary tool for the business for many companies, Hp has come up with Virtualised Browsing.


Vista vs Fedora 10

Thursday, December 11, 2008

This is everlasting conversation according to me bcz this is the debate which was goin accross linux and windows. But one thing i can say is that linux was trying accross to make user feel comfortable working on their environment when compared to windows. when comparing vista and fedora , Vista has an advantage: it comes already installed on most systems. By contrast, pre-installations of GNU/Linux, such as Dell's Ubuntu systems, are still rare.
Both Windows and GNU/Linux distributions now feature graphical install programs and first-time boot wizards with detailed instructions that any intermediate user can understand.
But still i feel like user is comfartable installing windows from scratch rather than linux.
Here are the few points which i can compare are
Look and Feel
Now Fedora and Vista look similar. But Now Fedora has many things that can really overtake windows.There are differences in menus and Listing out of currently running programs.
I am listing out the features of vista and fedora so that you can have a clear view whats new in these before you start comparing the both.
here are Features of Vista listed out below

Bring Vista's Best New and Improved Apps to XP

A Better Explorer: Windows Explorer is one of the most improved applications in Vista, thanks to added features like breadcrumb navigation, better file previews, and more.
Encrypt Your Hard Drive: Some versions of Vista—toward the Ultimate end of the scale—come with a new drive encryption software called BitLocker built in.

Take Quick and Easy Screenshots: PrtScrn has been around forever, but it's never been the most user-friendly way to get a screenshot.

Bring Vista's Best Functional Features to XP
ask-Switching à la Flip 3D: Vista's Flip 3D is like Alt-Tab on steroids, displaying full previews of each window as you move through it.
Integrated Start Menu Search and Launch: Dubbed Instant Search by Microsoft, this new feature adds a search box to the Windows Start menu for quick searching and launching of documents and applications.
Replace the Windows Sidebar
Live Thumbnail Previews of Files
Speed Up Your System with a Thumb Drive
Streamline Your File Renaming:
Taskbar Window Previews
Self-tuning and diagnostics
Startup, sleep, and shutdown performance
More responsive
Windows SuperFetch
Low-priority I/O
Disk defragmentation on a schedule
Faster access to DVDs and music
Diagnosing performance issues
Performance gains from Windows Vista and new hardware
Windows ReadyBoost
Windows ReadyDrive

Fedora 10

AMQP Infrastructure A technology that makes it easy to build scalable, interoperable, high-performance enterprise applications Appliance Tools Tools and meta-data that make it easier for anyone (ISVs, developers, OEMS, etc) to create and deploy virtual appliances
Artistic 1.0 License Removal Remove all packages licensed under only the Artistic 1.0 license before Fedora 10
Better Printing Improve management and handling of printers
Better Remote Support Make it easier to connect to remote controls and have them just work with many applications.
Better Start-up Stream line graphical start up
Better Webcam Support Improved webcam support
Connection Sharing Enable adhoc network sharing
Eclipse 3.4 Rebase Eclipse to version 3.4
Evdev Input Driver Evdev is being used as the default input driver for X.Org.
Faster Startup Decrease the amount of time it takes to start and stop fedora
First Aid Kit First Aid Kit is an automated recovery tool that brings together common recovery processes and applies them to a system
Glitch Free Audio Rewrite the PulseAudio sound server to use timer-based audio scheduling
Gnome 2.24 Re-base Fedora to Gnome 2.24
GStreamer RPM dependencies Assist automated installation of GStreamer codecs provided by third-party repositories
Kernel Modes Setting for Graphics Move graphic mode initialization from the X server's DDX drivers to the kernel
LiveConnect Allows JavaScript from web browsers to connect to a Java(TM) Virtual Machine and vice-versa.
LXDE Desktop Make the LXDE lightweight X11 desktop environment available in Fedora
NetBeans IDE Add the NetBeans IDE to Fedora 2008-09-09
Online Accounts Service Provides applications with credentials for user's online accounts listed on online.gnome.org or stored in GConf.
Python NSS Bindings Include a newly developed package which provides python bindings for NSS
Remote Virtual Install Enable the creation of virtual machines on remote hosts
RPM 4.6 Update RPM to 4.6
Save to Bugzilla Auto create bugzilla entry with anaconda tracebacks
Sbin Sanity Add /usr/local/sbin:/usr/sbin:/sbin to the PATH for normal users to simplify command-line administration tasks
Security Audit A new security audit system and intrusion detection system
Sugar Desktop Include the Sugar Desktop (used in OLPC) in Fedora
Virtual Storage Make storage provisioning over libvirt connections (local and remote) virtual machines as simple as possible.


Technology to Visualise the dreams.

There was a time when we used to think about visualising about the dreams of other people or what they are thinking in thier mind. sounds like fictious but japanese researchers have made it true to some extent.
Researchers at the ATR Computational Neuroscience Laboratories succeeded in processing and displaying images directly from the human brain, they said in a study unveiled ahead of publication in the US magazine Neuron.
They are trying to produce the images from the brain activity.They are in the initial stages at which they can only produce some simple images from the brain.
When people look at an object, the eye's retina recognises an image that is converted into electrical signals which go into the brain's visual cortex. Well it can be another giant step in the technology if this research gets succeeded.


Microsoft yahoo deal again

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Its back again yahoo-microsoft deal, there is a news like some company which has 1.5 percent of yahoo stock asked yahoo to make a deal with microsoft. Actually Ivory investment management LP is a company which holds 21.4 million shares of yahoo. They said like they feel like it is an maximization oppurtunity.
I think if this deal works out , it is a good oppurtunity to microsoft to compete the playing field of google.
"Under the Ivory proposal, Microsoft would own and operate the combined search platform, with Yahoo becoming an affiliate that retains 80 percent of the revenue generated through searches on its own site," Ivory said.
At present google owns 70 % of the market where as yahoo has 20 % and microsoft has 10%
But what ever we need to look how this deal works out and what stratagies that microsoft would take on.


Tag Your House With UV-based Temporary Grafitti

Look at the technology how it is goin up. now you can even spray paints on the light sensitive surfaces that produces temporary digital effects rendered in the real time. This is launched by Randam International's and named as Glow graffiti.
The interesting thing is RI's patented light sensitive surfaces change their graphic properties (such as their contrast) under exposure to the UV light. In order for the gadget to work, you have to use the special canvas.
The RI design house has created several of these type of digital paint gadgets. All are based on a design that previously linked electro-mechanical solenoid valves in the head of a paint roller to a computer that informed the valves with data to create the image. But what i think is we should not play around with these kind of gadgets most often and i think removal of harmful tobacco in fake cigs never completely cures the urge.
But guys this is not yet lanched in India and is only available in Uk and cost around 50 $.


Microsoft Hires Yahoo! Executive To Run Online Services

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Microsoft has appointed former Yahoo! executive Dr Qi Lu as the president of its online services group, with effect from 5 January 2009. Lu will lead Microsoft's efforts in search and online advertising and its online information and communications services.
Reporting to Microsoft's chief Steve Ballmer, Lu will oversee several groups including the advertiser and publisher solutions business, the online audience business, OSG research and development, and OSG Finance.

"I am genuinely excited about the opportunities ahead for Microsoft to make an enormous impact on the online industry," commented Lu. "Microsoft has built a great foundation for its search and advertising technologies and put an amazing team of researchers and engineers in place to drive the next wave of innovation in online services. I'm looking forward to working with them to help transform the way people and businesses use the Internet to find and share information."

Lu, most recently, served as executive vice president, engineering, search and advertising technology group, Yahoo! He left Yahoo! in August 2008 after 10 years of service. Before joining Yahoo!, Lu was a research staff member at IBM Almaden Research Center. Lu holds 20 U.S. patents and received his bachelor of science and master of science in computer science from Fudan University and his Ph.D. in computer science from Carnegie Mellon University.

With the integration of aQuantive now complete, Brian McAndrews, former CEO, aQuantive, and senior vice president of advertiser and publisher solutions group, Microsoft, has decided to move out of Microsoft and will do so over the next several months, serving in a consultative capacity to Steve Ballmer and Qi Lu during that time.

As part of this announcement, several teams will move to further align resources. The field sales organisations in the online services group will move to Microsoft's centralised sales, marketing and services group led by chief operating officer Kevin Turner. This group, called consumer and online, will be led by corporate vice president Darren Huston, and will include the global advertising sales and services organisation, led by vice president Bill Shaughnessy.


Mobile Phones Will Soon Control Our Homes!

Imagine you control your Home appliances using a mobile phone. Sounds thrilling rite,
Nokia is developing a smart home platform, Nokia Home Control Center, to offer consumers new ways to control their homes with a mobile device.
All solutions based on the platform can be used through a smart phone or PC locally or remotely. Consumers can monitor and control their electricity usage, switch devices on and off, and monitor different objects, such as temperature, camera and motion. In future, entire systems within the home can be connected to the Nokia platform, including security, heating and ventilation systems.
Nokia's Home Control Center will be the basis for next generation security, smart home solutions and household energy management systems. The platform is open, allowing third parties to integrate their own smart home solutions and services; its core consumer value is the plug and play experience across all solution areas with high security levels built in.


Google Friend Connect Now Available!

Google Friend Connect is now available in beta. This service lets webmasters add social features to their sites by simply copying and pasting a few snippets of code. The company explains 'Friend Connect' makes it easy for anyone to sign in to a website, share a little bit about themselves through a personal profile, discover other people with similar interests, invite their contacts and interact with friends.
The Friend Connect service also lets users log in using an existing account from Google, Yahoo!, AOL or OpenID. Similarly, one can choose to either establish a new profile or use profiles and friend sources from other social networks that have opened up their services, like Plaxo and orkut. Friend Connect also includes YouTube videos in your comments.

"Friend Connect's goal is to facilitate an open social Web. Using open standards like OpenID and OAuth, Friend Connect makes it simple for people to instantly interact with one another on the sites that they already love to visit. Additionally, websites that use Friend Connect become OpenSocial containers, capable of running applications created by the OpenSocial developer community," concludes Google.


The New Template for Techfunk

Thursday, December 4, 2008

This is new template which is gonna be the face of techfunk as it going to be 1 year of my blogging so it takes 2 days of time to rearrange all the things. so keep waiting


Major Changes in Techfunk

Dear Readers, i am in a process of making some major changes to TechFunk. so i may not be posting for two days from now. Keep Waiting . . .


More Troubles For Vista: Fedora 10

Monday, December 1, 2008

The latest version of the free operating system is here. While Vista is almost an year old, GNU/Linux-based operating systems keep getting better and better.

The Fedora Project, a Red Hat sponsored and community-supported open source collaboration project, has announced the availability of Fedora 10, the latest version of its free open source operating system distribution. Fedora 10 features numerous leading-edge technologies and continues to lay the groundwork for derivative open source distributions throughout the enterprise.

Fedora 10, the 10th release in five years, features substantial virtualisation improvements for remote installation and management of storage provisioning. These features will make system administration of virtual machine hosts and guests easier and more capable of automation, especially as they are integrated into Red Hat Enterprise Linux. Additionally, Fedora 10 includes NetworkManager connection sharing, allowing laptop users with an Ethernet or mobile broadband connection to provide Internet routing to others through the laptop wireless interface, for instant collaboration anywhere, anytime.

Fedora 10 includes the premiere of a new graphical boot system called Plymouth, designed to speed up the boot process by taking advantage of a new kernel mode setting feature. Plymouth was designed by Fedora contributors and targeted primarily at ATI cards, but will be expanded in the future to support a broader range of media cards. Fedora 10 also features increased hardware support for a vast array of webcams and better handling of printers via both direct physical connections and networks. Further, PackageKit, a software management tool that originally debuted in Fedora 9, has been extended in this release to provide on-demand codec software installation.

According to Linux Format magazine's review of the OS, "The first thing you'll notice is the vast increase in boot up speed thanks to the implementation of Plymouth - the replacement for the ageing and increasingly fragile RHGB. Along with the improvement in speed, the general look and feel of the initial boot process feels a lot smoother thanks to work done to minimise all the different hand overs between the BIOS, GRUB, RHGB and finally a smooth fade into the GDM login screen.

"Fedora volunteer contributors and Red Hat engineers worked together to develop the cutting-edge features found in Fedora 10. Their widespread appeal, combined with Fedora's policy of collaborating with upstream free software communities, means that many of these features will be found in other Linux distributions in the future," said Paul Frields, Fedora project leader at Red Hat.

Fedora 10 also enhances its commitment to security with a new security auditing and detection toolkit called SecTool, and a brand-new set of Python bindings that allow programmers to use the FIPS-140 validated NSS library for rapid development of secure applications. The distribution also extends the Live USB persistence feature that was pioneered in Fedora 9, adding support for a separate user data area with optional encryption for the ultimate experience in secure, portable computing. Amongst the many new and enhanced features, Fedora 10 includes the all-new OpenOffice.org 3.0 and GNOME 2.24.1, for maximum desktop productivity and ease of use; a rewritten audio system for faster response and lower power usage; a full set of appliance building tools; and support for more hardware than any other operating system.


Top Searches For 2008 by Yahoo

Yahoo reported on Monday that Barack Obama's presidential victory got more clicks than any other story on yahoo.com this year, but the most searched term was "Britney Spears".

Yahoo said that in the top 10 searches, Spears was the most popular, and has been for seven of the past eight years, followed by World Wrestling Entertainment and then by Obama.

Others on the top 10 list were Miley Cyrus, online game RuneScape, actress Jessica Alba, Japanese manga cartoon series Naruto, actresses Lindsay Lohan and Angelina Jolie, and reality TV talent show American Idol.

The top 10 political searches were Obama, Sarah Palin, John McCain, Hillary Clinton, George Bush, Ron Paul, John Edwards, Mike Huckabee, Arnold Shwarzenegger and Mitt Romney.

The most searched news stories were on hurricanes, Caylee and Casey Anthony, election 2008, Pakistan, pregnant man, China, Iraq, Shelley Malil, Patrick Swayze and Afghanistan


Microsoft’s Security U-Turn: Ovum

Microsoft will provide free malware protection to consumer PCs and mobile Windows devices in 2H09 under a project called 'Morro' it announced last week. This will mean the end of both Windows Live OneCare and the new Microsoft Equipt product.
Microsoft launched Equipt, an attractive package embracing Office and security products, in the US in mid July 2008 and in the UK on 20 October 2008. Its withdrawal four weeks later is surprising and leaves Microsoft’s Office strategy in the consumer market without a subscription offering.

Morro will turn Microsoft’s core anti-malware functionality into a free anti-malware product for PCs, stripped of OneCare’s more extraneous features. Microsoft says this has been precipitated by a rise in malware incidences and the failure of users to install basic security, particularly in developing countries. However, these long-standing problems are not new.

This move is also surprising because Microsoft has been reporting substantial improvements in countering malware on Windows with each new version of Windows and with every service pack. The largest single improvement occurred with XP SP2 and progress has been maintained through more recent releases. No single strategy will solve the malware problem, but there is no longer the urgency that we faced back in 2002/03 at the start of the Trustworthy Computing project.

Will Morro impact the occurrence of malware? Microsoft intended OneCare to extend the take-up of anti-malware products rather than to grab market share from competitors, and its current small market share indicates that it has not succeeded. Morro will not be built into Windows – a move that would bring major anti-trust battles for Microsoft – but Microsoft could install it on new PCs, as other anti-malware products are today. As most new PCs in developed markets are already shipped with anti-virus installed, the main impact would be to help overcome user inertia when the free subscription expires. Morro should help but its success will depend on how it adapts to changing attack strategies.

The consumer sector is secondary to the business market for most security vendors. However, a free Microsoft offering will impact their overall viability, leading to accelerated consolidation in the industry.

Few consumers will opt to buy an anti-malware product when there is a free alternative available from a well-known supplier. The market is largely commoditised already.

Information security is a 'market for lemons' – a term used by Akerlof in 1970 in the context of the used car market. The buyer has less knowledge of the product than the seller, and consequently bases their purchasing decision solely on price. In the case of IT security, the consumer has no way of understanding what is under the hood and has little technical understanding.

A free product is unbeatable – except by another free product. Revenue could come from value-added components, but the total revenue opportunity will be less than it is today.

Vendors could vacate the consumer and small business sector entirely, as Sophos did successfully several years ago. However, this would involve scaling down operations and would accelerate industry consolidation.

Microsoft will make Morro suitable for mobile Windows devices with a small-form factor. Businesses are free to use it on their PCs. The main restriction is that Morro will not provide any central deployment or management capability, making it unsuitable for larger organisations. Morro will address a large slice of the anti-malware market.

The danger is that a monopolistic situation will impede innovation. The current generation of anti-malware products react to threats and struggle to cope with the explosion in the number of variations of malware. Morro will likely follow the lead of Trend Micro in moving malware scanning into the cloud to allow it to work on smaller devices, but this does not surmount the fundamental limitations of a reactive approach. Proactive forms of defence may render today’s products obsolete within five years. In the case of consumer devices, this could come from improvements in the Wintel architecture, and Morro may come to be seen as a stepping stone to eliminate commercial and political opposition to these developments.


Axon Approves HCL Technologies' Buyout

The board of UK-based consultancy firm Axon Group has approved the £441.1-million acquisition bid by Indian IT major HCL Technologies. At the general body meeting, the majority shareholders voted in favour of HCL's 650 pence a share cash offer.
Vineet Nayar, chief executive officer, HCL Technologies, commenting on the vote, said, "We are very pleased that the Axon shareholders have approved HCL's offer for the company. This acquisition continues to make sound strategic sense for HCL especially in the current macro economic situation."

"Axon has achieved a significant degree of success in creating a leading SAP implementation services business which when combined with HCL's enterprise applications services, offshore capabilities and complementary market presence in North America, Europe and Asia will help drive the ongoing expansion of product and service capabilities in the global IT Services sector," added Nayar.

As HCL Technologies has already acquired 10.43 per cent shares of Axon from the open market at less than 650 pence a share, therefore Nayar said the overall deal size would now be lower than the initially-announced £441 million.

HCL will announce the final acquisition on 15 December 2008.


SGI Creates 10,000-Core Concept Computer

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Silicon Graphics has come up with a new concept of Molecule using mostly off-the-shelf consumer electronics components that packs in 10,000 cores into a single rack.

While the computer sounds like a powerhouse, it isn't real. But its a demonstration of how chips and memory using in personal computers can be brought together to create a powerhouse, says SGI.

Engineers at the company's research labs say they drew up the system to show how consumer electronics technologies could be applied to overcome some of the limits supercomputers face today.

The Molecule computer can handle 20,000 threads of execution, about 40 times more than a single rack x86 cluster system and was designed around an Intel Atom N330 chip, says SGI.

The computer would offer the computing power and memory bandwidth of more than 750 high-end PCs, yet it would consume less than half the power and less than 1.4 percent of the physical space.

"The Molecule concept computer balances processor speed, sustained memory bandwidth and power consumption," says SGI in a statement.

Most general purpose supercomputers have up to 512 cores in a rack but can expand to tens of thousands of CPUs.

The largest supercomputers use up to 100,000 cores - or even more - spread across hundreds of racks to deliver very high floating point performance and application flexibility.

The SGI Molecule concept computer is focused more on memory bandwidth, density and riding the evolution of consumer CPUs, says the company.


HP Launches First Multi-Touchscreen Notebook

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Take that Apple! HP has launched a new convertible notebook with multi-touch technology popularized by Apple's iPhone.

The new HP TouchSmart tx2 notebook PC's convertible design allows for three modes: PC, display and tablet, says the company. It comes with a rechargeable digital ink pen that users can use to draw and take notes on the screen.

The notebook includes an enhanced HP MediaSmart digital entertainment software suite that supports the familiar touch computing gestures such as pinch, flick, tap and drag with two fingers that can be used to interact with photos, video and other multimedia on the computer.

The laptop weighs about 4.5 pounds, has a 12.1-inch diagonal display and has an AMD Turion X2 processor. It is priced starting at $1,150.

HP already has a TouchSmart touchscreen desktop that it launched earlier this year.


Red Hat, Ingres Offer ISVs Enterprise Open Source Platform

Ingres a member of Red Hat Exchange (RHX), a programme through which Red Hat showcases enterprise-ready open source solutions with its ISV partners and Red hat have announced plans to work closely together with Independent Software Vendors (ISVs) in the EMEA region.

They are collaborating to present ISVs with an enterprise-class business offering. A launch event is planned for 27 November 2008 at Messeturm in Frankfurt, Germany, and signals the start of a range of joint activities for existing partners and interested parties to be held across the EMEA region in the following months.

Industry expert Paolo Malinverno from Gartner will be presenting a key note highlighting the market potential of enterprise open source software stacks and will demonstrate the opportunities and challenges presented by this approach.


Jerry Yang Stepping Down As Yahoo! CEO

Monday, November 17, 2008

The Big boss of yahoo groups has given a huge statement saying that he is stepping down as yahoo CEO.Yang, who assumed the CEO role at the board's request in June 2007, will reassume his former title of chief Yahoo! once a successor is found and will also remain on the company's board.
"From founding this company to guiding its growth into a trusted global brand that is indispensible to millions of people, I have always sought to do what is best for our franchise," said Jerry Yang.
For the past year and a half , jerry has faced extraordinary challenged and distraction , faced them and made yahoo stay back in the market.Roy bostock the chairman yahoosaid the board accepts the decisions of Jerry and they are looking for a New Ceo who will take the company to Next level.
Well Jerry yang had an Interesting challenges as an CEO and handled them well.


Sun Cuts 6,000 Jobs

Again its a Bad morning to the industry of software. The s/w Giant Sun Micro systems has announced a layoff of 6000 jobs in the coming 12 months. This is for restructuring plan aimed at reducing costs by approximately $700 to $800 million annually.
Sun expects to incur total charges in the range of $500 to $600 million over the next 12 months in connection with the plan, of which it expects to incur approximately $375 to $450 million within its current fiscal year 2009.

The company has also decided to enter into New business groups like Apllication platform software, system platforms and also cloud computing and developer platforms.


Windows HPC Server 2008 launched by Microsoft

So Microsoft strikes again, now it has come with the Release to Manufacture(RTM) of windows High performance server 2008. It seems HPC 2008 will be available to Independent software vendoew and computer manufacturers for final distribution.

Pallavi Kathuria, director, server business group, Microsoft India, said, “The success achieved by Windows Compute Cluster Server 2003 in the last few years is a strong testament of Microsoft’s value proposition in the High Performance Computing market. We are confident that as the successor, Windows HPC Server 2008 will help us further build on this momentum by offering an easy-to-deploy, cost-effective and scalable HPC solution for firms to leverage their existing resources and scale from workstation to cluster — all in a familiar Windows environment.”

According to Microsoft Windows HPC 2008 is designed for imrpoving productivity of systems administration and cluster interoperability by simplifying overall deployment,administration and management ocer the entire system lifetime.
Window HPC Server 2008 also supports third-party numerical library providers, performance optimisers, compilers and debugging toolkits.


Free Video Chat by Gmail

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Guys Internet giant google has taken one more initiative to compete againt its
toughest competetors microsoft and yahoo.Google has enabled video chat to gmail.

All you need to do is you need to have a webcam and a small web browser plugin to start video chatting. And listen with out web cam you can also have a voice chat.

"Google is offering browser-based voice and video chat as a natural extension to webmail and instant messaging, allowing people to choose how they want to communicate at each moment -- by e-mail, instant message, voice or video," states the company.

steps for getting started:
Open a gmail chat window.
Click on Options menu
choose Add voice/video chat

When you re-open Gmail, you'll notice your 'Options' link in your chat window has changed to 'Video & more'.

You can pop out the video and change its size and position, or switch to full screen.

Gmail voice and video chat is being rolled out over the next day or so on PCs and on Macs. Google Apps customers get this service as well, at no extra charge, and can voice or video chat with any other Gmail or Apps users.

To use voice and video chat, your PC must have Windows XP or a more recent version, or an Intel-Based Mac with Mac OS X v10.4 or later. It works in browsers that support the latest version of Gmail (Google Chrome, Firefox 2.0+, Internet Explorer 7.0 and Safari 3.0).


24 Nov: Software Testing Conference 2008

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Welcome back guys its been quite a period that i haven't given any post on my blog.
see here comes a rocking news to testing professionals accross India
I heard there is an 8th Annual Software Testing Conference (STC) 2008 to be held in Bengaluru by QAI.You can find Industry leaders gather to discuss the oppurtunities arising in the market of testing.

This is important for guys as it would be discussed in the current economic scenario.

Themed 'The Second Wave of Testing', the conference will bring together practitioners and thought leaders from the industry, academia and government, for sharing and exchanging ideas and learning in the area of software testing and process improvement. The two-day conference will be followed by post-conference tutorials across various cities.

The conference will also see speakers including Sashi Reddi, chairman, Applabs Technologies; Michel Guez, managing director, Smartesting; Murali Krishnan, director, testing services and operations, Cognizant Technologies; and Ranjana Narawane, lead technology capabilities, Accenture, amongst others.

Amongst the 600 delegates attending the conference, representatives from software companies in the Asia Pacific region including CTOs, CXOs, testing experts, consultants and trainers will be present. There has also been widespread interest from various international delegations like Singapore, Malaysia, South Korea, Sri Lanka and Australia, to participate and avail of the opportunity to interact with the global leaders of the outsourced testing industry.

Practitioners from various testing organisations contest for The Testing Leadership Award at the conference. The conference this year has received over 330 best papers and practices from over 85 maturity companies across the world.


Live Search Maps by Microsoft India

Microsoft India has launched Live Search Maps for India that offers users access to detailed listings and street maps for nine cities, business listings across 29 cities and access to highway networks to 20,000 cities and towns. Live Search Maps for India is on Microsoft’s Live Search Service, thereby allowing users to search for geographical information, places of general interest and business listings both on the PC and the mobile.
This is the first version of its local mapping service for India with the key features developed by the Microsoft India Development Centre (MSIDC) based in Hyderabad.

Speaking on the launch, Rishi Srivastava, head, consumer and online marketing operations, Microsoft India, said, “We are proud to launch Live Search Maps for users in our country. This is the first version of Live Search Maps for India, and Microsoft will continue to introduce new features and improvements in the near future to meet emerging needs of consumers. Over the last two years, Microsoft has made significant investments into research and development for Live Search, acquired global resources and introduced several new features which we believe are extremely relevant and will deliver great value to our users.”

“After recent innovations for Live Search such as image search, video search, local search, xRank and instant answers, we have rolled out Live Search Maps on our search platform to enable people to learn, discover and explore specific locations in India,” added Srivastava.

Several key innovations and features of Live Search Maps India were developed at MSIDC based on their research and understanding of the search needs of users in India. It leverages the Live Search Maps for India to deliver 2D mobile maps, location search and driving directions and supports adaptive rendering for results from Web, news, instant answers and spaces search.

“In the near future, we plan to add new features such as landmark-based driving directions, collections search, options for enterprise customers and developer community to create custom mash-ups, along with satellite imagery and related features for India and key cities,” said Gurpreet S. Pall, general manager, Live Search and MSN Technologies, Microsoft India Development Centre.

Live Search Maps India is powered by the Microsoft Virtual Earth platform, draws information through multiple local vendor sources such as NavTeq and uses Government of India approved data.


Hexaware Reports Net Profit Of Rs 115.1 Million

Monday, October 27, 2008

Guyz believe it this year Hexaware rocks in terms of revenue genration. It got 4 news clients in the last quarter increasing the total count to 177 clients mindblowing.
Which includes 66 Fortune 500/Global 500 list.
Hexaware Technologies Ltd, a global provider of IT and BPO services and consulting, has reported revenue of Rs 2946.2 million for the third quarter ended 30 September 2008, a QoQ increase of 3.6 per cent in INR terms and down 2.0 per cent in USD terms. Hexaware witnessed a QoQ increase of 21.0 per cent in INR terms, 20.2 per cent in USD terms in its profit after tax (PAT) to Rs 115.1 million.
For the current quarter to December, the company has forecast revenues to be in the range $61.5 million to $64 million.
Global headcount at the end of Q3 2008 stood at 5,924, a net reduction of 674 over Q2 2008.


ZTE Bags Exclusive WiMAX Contract In Africa

ZTE Corporation has clinched an exclusive contract from Chinguitel, a telecom carrier under Expresso Telecom Group (ETG), to help Mauritania build its first 2.5GHz Mobile WiMAX commercial network. Under the agreement, ZTE will be providing core network equipment, wireless access devices, as well as various communication terminals for indoor and outdoor use.
Mauritania has a total land area of over 1 million sq. kms and faces the Sahara Desert in the east and Atlantic Ocean in the west. With such a complicated geographical landscape, it becomes important for telecom operators to establish a stable and efficient WiMAX network.

After an evaluation process, Chinguitel chose ZTE to exclusively provide Mauritania the core network equipment to establish its first ever WiMAX 16e Commercial Network. In selecting ZTE, Chinguitel is leveraging ZTE’s advanced technology and expertise to help them establish a CDMA and WiMAX integrated network infrastructure, covering the whole area of Africa.

“This exclusive deal further demonstrates our global leading position in providing WiMAX solutions and marks the first time that we are partnering with ETG in deploying our WiMAX infrastructure in Africa,” said Xu Shengfei, chief representative, ZTE Mauritania. “With this deployment, we hope it will trigger more similar WiMAX opportunities in other African countries.”

“It is a valuable opportunity to partner with ZTE in building the first WiMAX commercial network in Mauritania. We are impressed by ZTE’s state-of-the-art technologies and pioneering visions, hence are confident that we can provide the African population with the most effective wireless and highly advanced communications platform to enjoy access of various wireless services,” said Elamir, CEO, Chinguitel.

To date, ZTE has established 30 commercial trials and trial networks for 802.16e WiMAX worldwide covering Asia Pacific, Middle East, Africa, Europe and the Americas.


Wipro, Fortify Announce Software Assurance Center

So here comes wipro and Fortify together are launching first software assurance center
SAC. The centre uses Fortify 360 technology and will operate from Wipro’s India and regional facilities in the US and EMEA, delivering software assurance capabilities to thousands of global clients via managed (SaaS) or on-demand models. That sounds really cool rite.
This SAC is useful for the clients which offers them a service that provides visibility into the risks posed by vulnerable software and assesses applications using Fortify technology and skilled personnel to provide a measure of the application’s security health – the Software Assurance Score. The Wipro SAC can also validate an application’s compliance to key regulations such as PCI, GLBA and HIPAA.

We may think what's the hand of Fortify in this..
According to John M. Jack, CEO, Fortify Software, “Wipro’s enterprise security solutions is a global leader in providing IT services and technologies to help large organisations address a broad range of information security issues. This partnership marks a major milestone for Fortify as we continue to build out our framework for Business Software Assurance and help companies address enterprise risk at the application level.”


Japan Could Be A Large IT Market: NASSCOM

Japanese IT services market at $108 billion is the second largest in the world with India's share in the market being 1 to 1.5 billion. Offshoring is limited to 8-10 per cent of the total market with China being the biggest offshoring partner, accounting for over 50 per cent of the total offshoring. NASSCOM and PricewaterhouseCoopers have released a report on Japan titled Opportunities for Indian IT Industry: Japan. The report presents key opportunities and outlines potential strategies for Indian IT companies to tap the $108 billion Japanese market.
Speaking at the launch, Som Mittal, president, NASSCOM, said, "The Indian IT-BPO companies are fast diversifying into near territories and opening up new opportunities for growth. Currently, 90 per cent of the exports happen to United States and Europe with rest of the world contributing just 10 per cent. These markets are investing in information technology (IT) offering huge opportunity."

"Japan as a second largest country economy and highly dependent on technology currently constitutes only 2 per cent of our exports. With shortage of technical skills in Japan and urgent need for business transformation, Japan would be a large market. While Indian companies have been targeting this market, a new concerted approach needs to be taken by both sides," added Mittal.

As per the report, a key element for Japan to retain its competitiveness in the global market would need the proactive effort by Japanese government and industry to break the traditional models and they would have to reach out. They would need to embrace globalisation, accept the advantages of outsourcing and find ways to open up service businesses with countries like India.

Japanese business houses would have to view IT as strategic enabler, rather than a cost centre. They would also have to re-look at their current hierarchical structure of IT service providers to bring in best practices in domain, technology and service delivery, further adds the report.

Some of the key opportunities for Indian IT companies as well as potential strategies to tap the Japanese market are also been identified in the report. According to the report, owning to a strong industrial and market base for embedded products in Japan, embedded systems and engineering services present quick win areas for Indian due to their high market requirement, low language dependence and high offshore ability. Alliance with the top and second tier players is a good entry strategy, as well as with the increased acceptance of foreign business practices, official government policy to attract FDI, changes in the legal, tax and accounting regulations complemented with the increasing muscle of the Indian IT companies, mergers and acquisitions is a viable alternative indicating strong commitment to Japanese clients.

Embedded systems development and engineering and R&D services are the prospective quick win service offerings for Indian vendors. Application development and maintenance are the next big opportunities. Increased willingness by Japanese companies to adopt packaged products over custom development in the wake of global competition. This offers implementation opportunities for Indian companies, says the report.

The report also points out that setting offshore development centre in China is another strategy as China is currently a preferred location for outsourcing low-end development work by Japanese clients due to its cultural and geographical proximity.


BGC3 by Bill Gates

If you are a Bill Gates, you can't sit at home after an early retirement. You will do something; Bill Gates is doing a lot more. After stepping down from his position at Microsoft and handing over the helm to Steve Ballmer, Gates is reportedly setting up a new company. The new company, called bgc3 (the website is still under construction, check out http://www.bgc3.com/), is reported to deal with broad range of topics such as 'scientific and technological services', 'industrial analysis and research' and 'design and development of computer hardware and software'.
Well, Gates venture into scientific area could be critical. He is known for closed source and proprietary technologies. Will he take the same approach in scientific matters? If yes, it could spell disaster. The Human Genome project has become so successful owing to its open source nature. However, it's way too early to predict anything.

The new company is expected to be a think tank for science and tech innovations. TechFlash reported the 'c' in the name stands for 'catalyst', not 'company'. The company will also work as a catalyst between Microsoft and The Bill And Melinda Gates Foundation. Recently, the foundation's The Grand Challenges Explorations initiative announced the winners of their Round 1 funding. This diverse group of scientists and researchers from 22 countries and five continents will each receive a $100,000 award to help them take their bold, new ideas for global health solutions to the next level.

According to Techflash, "The records describe bgC3 as a 'holding company' headquartered in Kirkland – a relatively short, picturesque drive from Gates' home on Lake Washington."

There was an interesting interpretation of bgC3 by the news site. "Bill Gates Company Three – his third enterprise after Microsoft and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. But that’s only partially correct, according to the Gates insider.

Well, Gates' retirement days are over. He is back to work!


Linux OS Worth $10.8 Billion

Thursday, October 23, 2008

The Linux Foundation has announced the publication of a new report titled 'Estimating the Total Development Cost of a Linux Distribution', written by Amanda McPherson, Brian Proffitt and Ron Hale-Evans on the value of Linux development. The paper finds that it would take approximately $10.8 billion to build the Linux community distribution Fedora 9 in today’s dollars with today’s software development costs. It would take $1.4 billion to develop the Linux kernel alone.

This report is an update of a 2002 study done by David A. Wheeler that examined the Software Lines of Code (SLOC) present in a typical Linux distribution (Red Hat Linux 7.1). At that time, Wheeler found that it would cost over $1.2 billion to develop a Linux distribution by conventional proprietary means in the U.S.

The authors examined Fedora 9 distribution using Wheeler’s tools and methods, specifically the SLOCCount tool that estimates value and effort of software development based on the COnstructive COst MOdel (COCOMO). The report goes into detail on the methods used, how they specifically apply to the Fedora distribution and the Linux kernel, and what an estimate of Linux’ value really means.

The study highlights three major areas; how much does a full distribution cost? how much does the Linux kernel cost? how does this really measure the value of linux?

Using 2008 salary figures, the tests published in the paper revealed that if developed today, the full set of Fedora 9 distribution packages would cost $10.8 billion. The Fedora 9 distribution contains 204.5 million lines of code in 5547 application packages. The development effort estimate comes close to 60,000 Person-Years. Applying this test to the Linux kernel included in Fedora 9 found the value to be 6.8 million lines of code worth $1.4 billion. The development effort estimate for the kernel alone exceeds 7500 Person-Years. This study reveals that collaborative development creates enormous economic value. In the past two years alone, over 3,200 developers from 200 companies have contributed to the kernel. An even larger number has contributed to full Linux distributions. Measuring the economic effort involved is imperfect, but this report clarifies why the methodology is the best approach and some of the limitations.

“This year has seen an incredible proliferation of Linux-powered devices outside of traditional Linux strongholds: devices powered by the Moblin platform, netbooks like the eeePC, mobile phones like the Gphone, and consumer devices like the Amazon Kindle. Would these products be possible without Linux?” said McPherson. “I think this points to the power of the collaborative development model. Monopolistic software companies used to be able to fund heavy R&D budgets, keeping out competition. Given the cost associated with building an OS like Linux, one wonders if proprietary companies will ever go it alone again.”

Amanda McPherson is vice president, marketing and developer programs, at the LF and leads its promotion, developer and community-relations activities. Brian Proffitt is community manager with the LF, managing the Linux Developer Network. Ron Hale-Evans is senior specifications writer with the LF and works closely with the Linux Standard Base (LSB) developer team to create LSB specifications.


IBM Introduces New System z10 Business Class Mainframe

IBM has said to introduce a new mainframe -- System z10 Business Class (z10 BC) -- to help mid-sized companies and customers in emerging markets jumpstart new application development efforts, consolidate IT server sprawl, and give qualified organisations a 'pay-as-you-grow' financial platform to build the mainframe as the foundation of their new enterprise data centre.
Additionally, IBM Global Financing is now offering 'Why Wait' -- a no-interest, no-payments programme for 90 days deferral to support qualified customers acquiring the new z10 BC now through the end of 2008.

"Clients are continuing to invest in mainframe technology, as evidenced in IBM's Q308 earnings, as revenues for IBM System z mainframe server products increased 25 per cent compared with the year-ago period, with double-digit growth in all geographies," said Shashi B Mal, director, systems and technology group, IBM India/South Asia. "Now with the introduction of our new z10 business class mainframe, clients have an incredibly efficient consolidation platform that is smart, cool, and very affordable. There's no comparison when you consider the legendary reliability and security of System z."

IBM z10 BC provides mid-sized clients with all the unique attributes of an IBM mainframe. For example, companies in emerging markets or in hot industries can now afford IBM's mainframe technology for under $100,000, says the company.

For customers seeking server consolidation options to cut costs, the IBM z10 BC delivers the capacity of up to 232 x86 servers, with 83 per cent smaller footprint, up to 93 per cent lower energy costs, and a higher level of security, control and automation.

The IBM z10 BC also offers processors known as 'specialty engines' that expand the use of the mainframe for popular SAP, Linux, Java applications, among others. From a performance standpoint, the IBM z10 BC, according to the company, is nearly 40 per cent faster, has over 50 per cent more total capacity and nearly four times the maximum memory compared to its predecessor, the IBM z9 BC. IBM z10 BC can support an incremental 1,000 e-mail users with the energy of a 100 watt light bulb.


Mono 2.0 Is Out; Brings .NET To Linux

Thursday, October 16, 2008

The Mono project, an open source initiative sponsored by Novell, has announced the availability of Mono 2.0, an open source, cross-platform .NET development framework. Mono 2.0 provides all the necessary software to develop and run .NET client and server applications on Linux, as well as other operating systems. The new Mono 2.0 release is now compatible with the desktop and server components of version 2.0 of the Microsoft .NET framework and features the Mono Migration Analyzer (MoMA), an analytical tool for .NET-to-Linux migrations.
"Mono 2.0 gives .NET developers the freedom to run their applications on a wide variety of operating systems, including Linux, Mac OS and Unix," said Miguel de Icaza, vice president, development platforms, Novell and maintainer of the Mono project. "Mono 2.0 benefits a wider range of developers, ISVs and end-users by allowing them to write their applications once and run them on any OS platform, dramatically increasing portability and expanding their market reach."

More than 2,000 .NET applications are Mono 2.0 compatible with no code changes. Mono 2.0 now includes MoMA, the Mono Migration Analyzer. MoMA, which runs natively on .NET or on the Mono framework, helps developers quantify the number of changes required to run their .NET application in a Linux environment. In an analysis of 4,600 .NET applications using MoMA, 45 per cent of the applications required no code changes to work with Mono. An additional 24 per cent of the applications were shown to require fewer than six code changes to run on Mono.

Mono 2.0 offers easy installation and comprehensive platform, hardware and API support -– the Mono framework supports a variety of platforms, including Linux, Mac OS X, Solaris, BSD and Windows; a variety of hardware options, such as x86, AMD 64, IA-64 (Itanium 2), EMT 64, PowerPC, ARM, S390 and S390x, SPARC and SPARC 9; all Microsoft .NET 2.0 APIs, including ASP.NET, ADO.NET and Windows.Forms; and C# 3.0 compiler with Language Integrated Query (LINQ) support.

Mono 2.0 also includes performance upgrades -– improves scaling and performance for ASP.NET, ADO.NET and Mono runtime; and useful downloads -– a virtual machine image that comes with a ready-to-use development environment, as well as many open source Web and desktop .NET applications, including the ASP.NET Starter Kits and other demos. An updated version of the MoMA tool, with improved reporting, is also available.

Mono 2.0 is available now and can be downloaded at www.mono-project.com/downloads.


Wikipedia dumps Red Hat for Ubuntu

The Wikimedia Foundation, the non-profit entity behind the Wikipedia online encyclopedia, has finished the porting of its IT infrastructure - including most servers and desktops - to the Ubuntu variant of Linux.

Wikimedia has been running on a mix of Red Hat development and commercial Linuxes since it was founded seven years ago, and while the number of machines that have been changed is relatively small in terms of the size of the Linux universe, it is a win nonetheless for Canonical, the commercial company behind the Ubuntu distribution.

Gerry Carr, marketing manager at Canonical, said Wikimedia began its transition to Ubuntu in earnest in April with the Ubuntu 8.04 Long Term Support (LTS) launch, although the organization had some Ubuntu 6.04 instances running on its servers alongside a mix of Fedora and Red Hat distributions starting back in 2006.
Servers dominate

Wikimedia has 350 servers today supporting its operations and fewer than 20 desktops, with the exception of a couple of servers still running a Red Hat Linux and a Windows desktop machine that is used to run QuickBooks to do the accounting for the foundation.

All remaining servers and many desktops are running Ubuntu 8.04 LTS. All future servers will be setup with Ubuntu 8.04 LTS, and Wikimedia intends to push that LTS-only idea to the limit by not changing Linuxes unless it has to.

In a case study Canonical has put together, Wikimedia's chief technology officer Brion Vibber said the organization explored the possibility of sticking with Fedora. However: "Fedora moves a little too fast and we were not happy about some of the configuration management features."

Several Wikimedia system admins also liked Debian Linux, especially Ubuntu. This seems to have tipped the balance from Fedora to Ubuntu.

Wikimedia operates three data centers - one in Amsterdam, The Netherlands, another in South Korea (the city is unknown as we go to press), and the last one in Tampa, Florida. The Tampa data center is where most of the iron is actually located. The servers are x64 rack-mounted servers in 1U- and 2U-form factors, and Dell is the dominant supplier.

The machines run MySQL databases, the PHP programming language, the Apache Web server, Linux, and the custom applications created by Wikimedia to create Wikipedia. Wikimedia uses the Subversion code repository and the Bugzilla bug tracking software, too. And is obviously very keen on open-source software. The Wikipedia site has 2.5 million English articles and supports a peak of around 50,000 page requests per second.

With the LTS distribution, Canonical provides tech support and security patches for five years on servers and for three years on desktops, compared to the shorted development cycles for regular Ubuntu releases.

The LTS releases also have broader and deeper application certification for the stuff that rides atop the Linux distribution. The announcement of Wikipedia's use of Ubuntu comes just as Canonical is putting the finishing touches on its next regular release, Ubuntu 8.10, code-named Intrepid Ibex. Regular Ubuntu releases have 18 months of support for desktop and server variants.

Incidentally, while Wikimedia is using Ubuntu to run the company, and that might seem to imply commercial-grade support contracts from Canonical, this is not the case.
Support free

According to Carr, Wikimedia has not engaged Canonical for support contracts but there is some discussion about Wikimedia using Canonical's Landscape system management tool, announced in March, as well as doing some sort of custom support contract.

Right now, Wikimedia is using custom Ubuntu versions that have its own software configuration tools. Carr said Wikimedia has plenty of Linux expertise and a standard support contract doesn't make a lot of sense. Canonical is also hoping that Wikimedia becomes more involved with the Ubuntu support forums and with the process of deciding what needs to go into future Ubuntu releases, too.


CSC To Hire 2,000 Professionals

Good News for the software geeks, As the market is going down and here comes the company which is recruiting more than 1500 profesionals for next coming 6 months doesn't it sound cool.
lobal IT services major CSC on Wednesday announced that it would add 2000 professionals to its India operations in the next six months, on the back of growth in segments such as manufacturing and financial services.

CSC, whose India headcount contributed over $1 billion to its global revenue last year, employs 18,500 professionals in India.

“India is CSC’s largest world sourcing location outside the US and an important part of the company’s global success” said Mr Michael W Laphen, President and CEO of CSC, who is currently on a six-day visit to India.

During his visit, Mr Laphen would be meeting CSC employees to discuss their role in the company’s global business strategy. In addition, he would inaugurate the Noida campus, the largest CSC campus in India and also visit CSC facilities in Hyderabad and Chennai. CSC’s India operations focus on services such as applications development, product support, infrastructure services and BPO.

Elaborating on the hiring plans of the company, Mr Rajendra B. Vattikuti, President of CSC’s operations in the country said, “The manpower addition plans are being driven by the strong growth in the manufacturing and financial services space. We will also be moving more work to India.”


Microsoft Unveils Silverlight 2

Microsoft has released Silverlight 2. Silverlight is a browser plug-in that allows users to view and interact with rich media on the Web.

With the plug in update, the company will also release development tools for Mac developers.

Silverlight, a competitor for flash delivers a Flash-like Web experience to users, allowing them to interact with elements of a Web page, including watching video.

But against Flash, Silverlight offers many other advantages like the language used to code applications. In Silverlight, developers have the choice of using any language.

Many companies like AOL, Hard Rock Cafe, Yahoo! Japan, AOL, and Toyota have chosen Silverlight to deliver rich media on their Web sites, thus indicating that its popularity is growing.

To help provide tools to developers, Microsoft is providing funds to France-based Soyatec, to integrate advanced Silverlight development capabilities into the Eclipse IDE.

Silverlight 2 is available for free download from Microsoft's Web site.


New Dell Offering Embeds CommVault Simpana Software

Dell and CommVault are teaming up to offer a new integrated backup-to-disk solution that will give small- and medium-sized (SMB) companies better assurance that mission-critical data is protected, available and accessible. This offering is built on the new Dell PowerVault DL2000, a customer-installable, integrated software and hardware solution powered by the CommVault Simpana 7.0 software, and provides a disk-to-disk based solution to help customers implement and leverage a data management strategy that is simpler and more cost-effective to deploy.
The DL2000 is said to lower the cost and complexity barriers of entry for companies looking to increase the speed and reliability of their backups, reduce their storage footprint and centralise the protection of remote sites.

“This latest CommVault integration into the long-awaited addition for Dell customers further emphasises CommVault’s close partnership with Dell and our commitment to providing holistic data management solutions. We are honoured that Dell saw Simpana 7.0 as a natural fit for its new product lineup. Now, Dell and CommVault customers can deploy and manage disk-based backup quickly for immediate and positive impact to their business and IT operations,” said Dave West, vice president, marketing and business development, CommVault.

“The teaming of CommVault and Dell to deliver a comprehensive, fully-integrated disk-based data protection solution streamlines deployment and simplifies data management for enterprise and SMB organisations. Dell’s partnership with CommVault is a testament to the companies longstanding relationship and validation of CommVault’s technology expertise,” said Lauren Whitehouse, analyst, Enterprise Strategy Group.

“Customers are looking for easy-to-deploy full-service backup and recovery solutions that help maximise resources and make their jobs easier,” said Darren Thomas, vice president and general manager. “The DL2000 combines our PowerVault storage with CommVault’s advanced Simpana software – including de-duplication capabilities - into a single, integrated package to help simplify and automate these processes. We’ve done the integration so our customers don’t have to.”

The Dell PowerVault DL2000, powered by CommVault Simpana software, can help SMBs reduce costs and prevent unnecessary expenditures with features that include: available built-in de-duplication which retains more recovery points on less disk; consolidated management, reporting and maintenance – the Simpana software’s centralised management console allows users to set backup tasks and policies for system monitoring and maintenance for local or remote physical or virtual servers; single step granular recovery delivers up to 77 per cent faster restores; 'Assist and Accelerate' upgrades of Windows, Exchange and SharePoint; synthetic full backups which reduce performance impact and Backup Windows; and automated storage policies which simplify tiered storage management.


Intel buys NetEffect for $8 million

Big-time money maker of modern times, Intel, has just confirmed that it has acquired all the assets of NetEffect, a network connectivity solutions company specializing in Ethernet products and technologies for server compute clusters. By paying just(?) $8 million, Intel has secured itself NetEffect's knowledge and product portfolio which includes 1 Gigabit and 10 Gigabit Ethernet (GbE) adapters and 10 GbE Application Specific Integrated Circuits (ASICs).

"NetEffect's role as a data communications solution provider and the company's technology will enhance Intel's current Ethernet efforts," said Tom Swinford, general manager, Intel LAN Access Division. "The combination of Intel and NetEffect technology will allow Intel to address our customers' most important 10 Gigabit Ethernet needs, including server virtualization, convergence of network and storage traffic, and server compute clusters."

Through the deal, all 30 NetEffect employees will join Intel and continue their work in Austin, Texas.


Instant Messaging for Devices Makes Data Transfer Easy

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

As the number of computing devices used by the average user increases - desktop at work, notebook at home, mobile phone for email and web browsing- moving data across these has become a challenge.

Two researchers at IBM have devised a way to make it easier to manage multiple devices and transfer files, images and other information seamlessly.

Think of it as instant messaging for your computing systems, they say, where different devices are almost like friends on your buddy list and can be connected with depending on whether a particular device is online or offline.

Data management is an emerging yet a growing problem today, says Michael Gartenberg, vice president at research firm Jupitermedia.

"They are absolutely 100% on the right track here," says Gartenberg. "What they are doing is very, very important because consumers are using a whole host of devices and very few, if any, are thinking how to make that device usage seamless."

A quick survey of 27 IBM researchers and Stanford faculty showed that most people carry nearly six devices including their PCs at work, home and mobile phones.

"We have more devices than ever that we work with but each assumes it is the only one," says Jeff Pierce, a researcher at IBM's Almaden Research Center who will be presenting the software at a user interface software conference in Monterey, California next week.


iPhone App Helps Drivers Avoid Speeding Tickets

A new application enables iPhone owners to stick it to the man with the powers of social networking.

Trapster, a free app developed by a company that goes by the same name, follows a driver's location as a dot on a map. If the driver passes by a police officer camping out with a radar gun, the driver can tap the iPhone to plot a speed-trap point. Trapster transfers that data point to a server, and then other drivers using Trapster will be alerted of that speed trap when they come across the same location.

It's unclear how well this app will work, seeing as it relies on user-reported data. I'm slightly pessimistic that it would help much: When I see a cop on the street, the last thing I want to do is touch my phone, seeing as I could be pulled over because of the new hands-free handset law.


Steve Jobs Unveils Newer, Sexier Aluminum MacBooks

So here comes steve jobs with presenting a MacBook, MacBook Pro, and MacBook Air that will feature faster processors, better graphics, and a uniform design language of aluminum and glass. Jobs also unveiled a new 24-inch cinema display made especially to accompany Mac laptops.
Guyz here are some cool features menioned below
check them out
1. New MacBook Pros

* Starts at $1999.
* 2.4 GHz processor
* 15-inch 1440 x 900 glossy display.
* 0.95 inches thick, weighs is 5.5-pounds.
* Nvidia GeForce 9400m graphics card.

2. Refreshed MacBooks

* Starts at $1299.
* 2.0 GHz processor.
* 13-inch LED-backlit 1280 x 800 glossy display.
* 0.95 inches thick, weighs is 4.5-pounds.
* Nvidia GeForce 9400m graphics card.

3. MacBook Air

* Cheaper. (The SSD model is now $2500)
* Integration of Nvidia 9400m means 4x faster graphics.
* Faster front side bus.
* Mini-DisplayPort.
* Aluminum and glass design as seen in the MacBook and MacBook Pro

4. New Cinema Display

* 24-inches
* LED backlighting.
* Integrated iSigh.
* 1920 x 1200 resolution.
* 3-port USB hub.
* Stereo speakers.
* Mini display port.
* Out in November.


Real Geeks Wear It On their Sleeve

What better way to yell out your geek credentials than to snap on some cuff links (when you absolutely have to!) that have photographs of your favorite molecules on them?

Michael Davidson, a research scientist at Florida State University, has been taking photomicrographs or pictures through a microscope of molecules for years. Some of his work has appeared on neck ties and bed sets among other things.

The latest to carry his work are stainless steel cuff links that feature photomicrographs of the caffeine and testosterone molecule.

Davidson who works at the Optical Microscopy Division of the National High Magnetic Laboratory is open to custom photomicrographs of alloys, liquid crystals, superconductors and proteins among other things.


Who Needs Photoshop? Free GIMP Is Here

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Shooting is fun. Of course not with a gun, but with a camera. Today, most of us become trigger happy at the mere sight of a fine spectacle. The popularity of Flickr and Picasa takes this hobby further. But you do need a software to help you edit the pictures you have taken; students need software to create and manipulate images for their projects; businessmen need photo editing software to create images for their presentations; graphic artists ... Well, this is the breed which breathes with photo editing software. Most of the time, we use Photoshop which is quite expensive. Those who live in a better world of GNU/Linux are already aware of the powerful alternative of Photoshop -- it's called GIMP.
GIMP has almost everything that you need for basic and advanced image editing. And the best thing is it is not only free in terms of philosophy of freedom (check this), but also comes for free of cost. The GIMP team has recently announced the release of a new version of the popular image editing software -- version 2.6.

Those who are already aware of GIMP may make sense of some of the features I am going to talk about, those who have not tried the GIMP, yet, are missing a lot. Below are the technical details of the GIMP. For ordinary users, the best thing would be to skip the technical details and simply go to the download option to download and install GIMP on their machine, whether it be Windows or GNU/Linux.

In the new version, the toolbox menu bar has been removed and merged with the image window menu bar. To be able to do this, a window called the empty image window has been introduced. It hosts the menu bar and keeps the application instance alive when no images are opened. It also acts as a drag and drop target. When opening the first image, the empty image window is transformed into a normal image window, and when closing the last image, that window becomes the empty image window.

Important progress towards high bit-depth and non-destructive editing in GIMP has been made. Most colour operations in GIMP are now ported to the powerful graph based image processing framework GEGL, meaning that the internal processing is being done in 32 bit floating point linear light RGBA. By default, the legacy 8 bit code paths are still used, but a curious user can turn on the use of GEGL for the colour operations with Colours/Use GEGL.

In addition to porting colour operations to GEGL, an experimental GEGL Operation tool has been added, found in the Tools menu. It enables applying GEGL operations to an image and gives on-canvas previews of the results.

It is now possible to pan beyond the image border, making image window navigation much less constrained. It is no longer a problem to use the edge of a brush on the edge of an image while being zoomed in, and one can adapt the canvas to any utility windows covering parts of the image window.

However, if you have used the version 2.4, you will find some minor changes, which you need to get used to. But it is not good for GIMP team to change menu positions because it takes a lot of time to figure them out.

So, it's time for you to move on and download GIMP.


Ask.com, now with more answers

Ask.com is cleaning up its act a bit with the latest (the 11th, I'm told) major update of the search engine, which launches on Monday.

The biggest change is that Ask is parsing more data from various sources and displaying that in its search results. If you ask Ask a question, the algorithms will try to give you an answer in the result pages, not just a link to a relevant Web site. Ask.com president Scott Garrell confirmed that, yes indeed, this is the premise that Ask was founded on in 1996 when it was Ask Jeeves, but back then the answers were hand-crafted. Today they're created by the engine.

The company is also mining the Web for "Q&A pairs," and displaying answers from any site where people ask questions and others answer them. The site will also display questions related to the one the user asks, as well as the answers to their question, to help them do further research on a topic.

The service is also displaying more structured data in its results, such as TV listings and events.

Garrell claims that Ask 11 is 30 percent faster than Ask 10 as well as more accurate in its results. It's also a bit more cleanly organized, but you'd have to put the old and new version side-by-side to see the difference.

Parsing search results instead of just displaying them in a list is, of course, not unique to this engine, but I do like the focus on displaying answers instead of just links.


SAP: first to hit the buffers

SAP pre-announced its Q3 results at what could not have come at a worse time for the beleaguered stock market. Although executives were bragging about 4% growth in software sales as though BusinessObjects doesn’t exist the reality is that year over year growth was off 9%.

Management blamed the result on a ’sudden,’ ‘unusal’ and ‘unexpected’ drop in deal closure rates. SAP also announced a hiring freeze including cutting back on temporary staff and on all variable expenses.

Henning Kagermann, SAP’s co-CEO claimed the company executed well up to the last two weeks of September. “Many customers felt the need to focus on shorter term concerns and put planned IT investments on hold for now. There was some hesitation on software purchases where financing was an issue. No company including SAP is immune from a sudden and serious economic downturn…We are not cutting out or downsizing, that would be too extreme at this time but we are in preparedeness mode…We remain in the middle of the range of our guidance for software and software related revenues.”

Sarah Friar of Goldman Sachs asked about the impact of the downturn on the planned maintenance fee increase and subsequent margin expansion. “I think together with some user groups we have a very good package and they understand more and more the value behind this offering,” said Kagermann.

By the numbers:

U.S. GAAP software and software-related service revenues are in the range €1.970 bn ($2.657bn) and €1.980 bn ($2.671bn) (2007: €1.74 bn - $2.35bn), representing an increase of 13% - 14% compared to the third quarter of 2007.
Non-GAAP software and software-related service revenues, is expected to be between €2.010 ($2.71bn) and €2.020 bn ($2.724bn) (2007: €1.74 billion - $2.35bn). This represents an increase of 16% - 17% compared to the third quarter of 2007.
U.S. GAAP software revenues are expected to be between €740 ($998mill) and €750 mill, ($1.o1 bn) (2007: €715 mill - $964 mill), representing an increase of 4% - 5%
By any measure, the result is a shock and in after hours trading, SAP was down 16%

SAP expects to firm up its numbers and present a full report on October 28th at which stage we’ll likely know the full extent of the current loss of confidence among buyers.


Red Hat Delivers First Integrated Linux-Based HPC

Red Hat has announced the delivery of the industry's first integrated Linux-based high performance computing (HPC) platform with the global availability of the Red Hat HPC Solution, an all-in-one stack that customers can leverage to deploy, run and manage their HPC clusters. For deploying and managing HPC clusters, Red Hat, Dell and Platform Computing have also partnered to offer customers a comprehensive cluster computing package, Platform Open Cluster Stack (OCS), to ease cluster deployment, management and operation of the Red Hat HPC Solution.
"With our HPC Solution, we're enabling our customers to focus on their business goals and competitive advantage without needing to worry about the challenges of deploying and managing their HPC cluster - we're taking care of this for them," said Scott Crenshaw, vice president, platform business unit, Red Hat. "We're delivering the first Linux-based solution that allows our customers to deploy a fully integrated high-performance computing environment in minutes rather than in weeks or months. No one else in the industry has yet been able to deliver this type of compelling Linux solution for HPC clusters."

The Red Hat HPC Solution incorporates all of the components necessary to deploy and maintain HPC clusters, including Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5.2 and Platform Computing's cluster software framework, Platform Open Cluster Stack 5. The solution also includes device drivers, a simple cluster installer, cluster management tools, a resource and application monitor, interconnect support and Platform Lava, a powerful job scheduler.

"Dell is committed to simplifying high performance computing solutions and sees benefit in the approach that Red Hat is taking with their HPC Solution," said Judy Chavis, director, business development and product management, Dell. "By utilising our existing relationship with Platform Computing, commitment to simplify IT and established practice of utilising standard-based components in complex environments; this solution helps strengthen our position in the HPC market and fits well into our overall strategy."


NASSCOM Launches Social Innovation Honours

NASSCOM Foundation is pioneering the Social Innovation Honours to recognise excellence and encourage innovation in social development initiatives. The annual honours aim to showcase projects that demonstrate best practices through exemplary use of ICT (information and communication technology) in areas of social transformation. This honour is a celebration of innovations that bring about social change and development through the application of cutting-edge technology.
The grand jury comprises Narayana Murthy, Jaithirth Rao, Kiran Mazumdar and Kiran Karnik. The winners of the honours will be announced at NASSCOM’s India Leadership Summit in February 2009.

In creating the platform for Social Innovation Honours, NASSCOM Foundation aims to identify projects where innovation could be in the form of both a process and a result. In looking at the process, NF aims to understand systems based on transfer and sharing of knowledge across the public, private and nonprofit sectors. For NF, a social innovation can be a product, a process, or a technology, as well as "a principle, an idea, a piece of legislation, a social movement, an intervention, or some combination of them".

Terms such as social enterprise and social innovation were coined in the non-profit sector and hence continue to be associated only with this sector. However, there are many path-breaking projects that have been initiated by the government as well as corporates which deserve to be recognised and feted.

Hence the achievement of social development through the use of ICT innovations could be in terms of: increased education, better health and hygiene, employment/entrepreneurship opportunities and environment. There are three categories for nomination -- Non-profit organisation: ICT innovation for the community (non-profit) -- an innovation which helped achieve social development, or aided a community, which is not part of a business plan; Profit organisation: ICT led business model innovation (for profit) -- an innovation which helped achieve social development, or aided a community, which is part of a business plan; Government ICT led business model innovation -- an innovation which helped achieve social development, or aided a community.

Speaking about the relevance of the Honours, Kiran Karnik, trustee, NASSCOM Foundation, said, “Today we see and experience a society facing unprecedented social, economic, environmental and cultural challenges. Social innovation transforms these challenges into opportunities to improve our communities. Our work endeavours to create and curate spaces that foster these social innovations. Diverse mixes of people connect in a unique physical space to stimulate new thought, the seeds for interventions and learning opportunities for doing social good. NASSCOM Foundation is initiating the Social Innovation Honours to recognise excellence and encourage innovation in social development initiatives.”

Added Rufina Fernandes, CEO, NASSCOM Foundation, “We like to salute and celebrate the contributions and efforts of for-profit as well as non-profit organisations that have led the way, walked the talk and made a difference, whether big or small.



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