David Adams Archive

Apple’s Chief in the Risky Land of the Handhelds

A thought-provoking New York Times article examines the evidence that Apple may secretly be working on a PDA/Phone device. It cites some cryptic statements by Steve Jobs about how PDAs are going to be replaced by phones, and some not-so-cryptic ones about the sorry state of the handheld offerings today. The article's main evidence, though, is the interesting proliferation of features in Max OS X.2 that have more immediately applicable benefit in a handheld, like handwriting recognition and the "internet distilled" functionality of Sherlock (also seen in the shareware app Watson). Apple already has a license to use the iPod software in a second device.

Follow-up on Removed Microsoft Web Fonts

Mark Hachman at Extreme Tech saw our report on Microsoft removing the commonly-used free web fonts from its download site and called Microsoft for comment. Microsoft denies that the move was aimed at any particular Free Software users, despite the fact that it happened on Linux World's opening day. They claim that the free fonts were being "abused." Poor, poor fonts. They just couldn't protect themselves. See more at Extreme Tech

FBI in Panic Over Warchalking

The media's ability to turn a cute idea into a raging hype feedback loop has crossed with the post Sept 11th paranoia factor yet again as an FBI field office in Pittsburgh warns businesses of the pernicious new pastime of "Warchalking." See this Computerworld story. Warchalking is the latest non-trend to sweep the internet, and it involves scrawling information about close-by wireless networks on the streets in chalk. Despite the fact that nobody is actually doing it, just about every media outlet in the world has reported on it.

Microsoft Pulls Free Web Fonts

In a move that could have repurcussions in the alternative OS world, Microsoft has pulled the free web fonts (Verdana, Courier New, Tahoma, Trebuchet MS etc.) that were downloadable from its site for some time. This is significant since several Linux distributions provide automatic installers for these fonts to improve the default fonts. Also, these fonts are essential for a bettet web browsing. Hopefully, distributors will now spend some money to design a good standard set of free fonts of their own.

UnitedLinux Beta Forthcoming

Plenty of Linux news today due to LinuxWorld Expo being in full swing today. According to a ZDNet News article, UnitedLinux, the project uniting the Linux distributions from Caldera, Conectiva, SuSE Linux and Turbolinux, will be rolling out a two-stage beta program, first a private beta for partners, and then an open beta for the Linux-using public. These releases are scheduled for late August and September, respectively.

OSNews T-shirts, Hats, Mugs

Show your co-workers, friends, and family that you're a member of the Geek Elite. Buy an OSNews Shirt, Hat, or Mug! Each one will be lovingly hand-crafted just for you by busy robots. In the comments below, let us know if you'd be interested in OSNews shirts with cheeky captions like "I Knew Linux Before Linux was Cool." Suggest some cheeky captions. And let us know if you'd be interested in other OSNews merchandise like bags, other clothing, mouse pads, etc.

Fill Out the OS News Survey

We've prepared a short survey to collect some basic demographic information about OS News readers and collect your opinions about what we can do to make OS News better. Please take a few minutes to fill it out. Link to Survey. If you'd like to share your thoughts about OS News, its present and future, with everyone, please comment on this posting below.

Pop-up Ad Scourge

As many people noticed, and quite a few emailed us about, the past couple of days OS News has been displaying a great number of pop-up ads. I'd like to take this opportunity to say that OS News thinks that pop-up ads are generally bad, and that we have stopped using the ad broker that was serving the pop-ups. They made arrangements to not display pop-ups at our request, but didn't follow through on their agreement, so we have yanked them until they do. We're sorry for putting our loyal readers through it, but rest assured that we're trying to balance our need to make a little money and maintaining a good experience for our beloved readers. You may still see the occasional pop-up, but we're determined to keep it to a minimum. By the way, if you'd like to provide support to OSNews, so we don't have to resort to pop-ups and other intrusive advertising, there are two easy ways to do it that won't cost you a cent: First, when you buy something--anything--from Amazon.com, use This Link and OSNews will get a small percentage of your purchase, without costing you more. Also, when you're in the market to buy anything, check OS News' Pricegrabber where we also get a little kick-back.

Corel Shuts Down its Open Source Site

According to ZDNet, the final note in Corel's gradual abandonment of its ambitious Linux initiatives seems to have arrived. Corel was involved in several open source projects including its own Linux distro, WINE, Application Printing Services API, Corel Package Utilities, 10n-i18n Internationalization, and Cprof Performance Profiler. The site will only be up through the end of the month.

MacOSX Week: Blast from the Past: OSNews Coverage of OSX (Rhapsody) in 1997

Back in 1997, there was exciting news coming out of Cupertino. Apple had spurned Be and acquired Steve Jobs ... er... NeXT and announced its grand new OS strategy. We all know how the story ends, but it's fun to remember how the story began. The first article is a real blast from the past, since it talks about Apple's Network Computer strategy. The second article is a non-programmer's journey into Objective C prgramming with the NeXT tools, then called the Yelow Box, now called Cocoa. Enjoy!

News Flash: Microsoft is NOT the “Evil Empire”

In an interview with the St Petersburg Times, Microsoft's Steve Ballmer stressed most emphatically (is he ever not emphatic?) that his company is not an "Evil Empire." He says, "I don't think it's right and I think it causes people to make decisions which are not even in their best interest . . . A, we're not evil. B, we're not an empire." A Siliconvalley.com article has the entire interview with Microsoft's energetic CEO.

Mac OS X 10.1 – A Road Test

OS News' review of Mac OS X last week certainly stirred up controversy, partially because some die hard Mac fans perceived that it was improper for an outsider (someone who is not an everyday Mac user) to me making broad criticisms after only a superficial introduction to the New operating system. Well, folks, that's why they call it a review. We thought that Apple's major new OS also deserved a road test, and there were two very important events in Mac OS X history just a few days ago that toppled the last major obstacle to making it ready for millions of Mac users to start using it as their everyday OS: the 10.1 release and the release of Microsoft Office X. Last week, I made the switch and started using Mac OS X as my everyday OS. Here's how it went:

OS/2’s Last Bastion Likely to Fall Under XP Onslaught

A PC World article reports that though OS/2 has enjoyed years of success in key niches such as automated banking and airline systems, those days may be numbered as Microsoft targets those markets with Windows XP. OS/2 has virtually disappeared from the desktops of all but an elite hard-core group of enthusiasts, but its stability made it popular for devices like ATMs. With IBM's support for OS/2 having waned years ago, things are looking pretty grim for its continued existence as a live product.

Confirmation: MacOSX 10.1 Available By September, 29th

At Seybold Expo Apple CEO Steve Jobs announced that MacOSX 10.1 would be available on September 29th. Retail price is $129, having an upgrade CD shipped to you from Apple is $19.99, and it will be available in all Apple Retail stores (and official resellers' stores) for free. Update: Saturday. A visit to our local neighborhood Apple Store (Tyson's Corner, VA) yielded no free CD. Apparently over 1000 people lined up at 6 am this morning to get theirs.