Thursday's Topical Treatise

All the news that's fit to rant aboutStand by for news. Michael Crichton is 61. Weird Al is 44. The first video recording on magnetic tape was televised coast-to-coast on this day in 1956.

  1. Here comes the Do Not Spam registry. The US Senate has unanimously passed an anti-spam bill that outlaws deceptive spam and creates a registry for people who don't want junk email. Law enforcement and ISPs, but not individuals, could go after spammers. Only fraudulent or deceptive spam would be illegal, not all unsolicited commercial email. The House is stalled on its version of the bill.
  2. Watch your mouth. Gator is going after web sites that call its program "spyware." Gator says it's not spyware because users are notified before the download and the program provides a service. Gator has already successfully sued PC Pitstop. "If we find anyone publicly calling us spyware, we correct it and take action if necessary," said Scott Eagle, Gator's senior vice president of marketing. Call us "adware" instead.

    I prefer to call it "crappy software you should under no circumstances install." Use Roboform AI instead. It's free of charge and spyware free.

  3. At the Office 2003 launch Bill Gates tells Australian IT that governments that choose open source are choosing an inferior product. "Our position is that organizations should simply buy the best software for their situation," he said. "Do you want your Government to be efficient?"
  4. X10 files for chapter 11 bankruptcy protection after the $4.3 million judgment in the pop-under case.
  5. It may make you look like you're talking into a taco, but Nokia claims its new N-Gage gaming cell phone has sold 400,000 units in just two weeks. Sell through might be just a teeny bit lower. Arcadia research says 5,000 have been sold in the US.
  6. From Darwin to Adelaide in 30 hours, 54 minutes. The Dutch Nuon Solar Team has broken its own record for solar powered vehicles, averaging 97 km/hr in the Seventh World Solar Challenge. MIT came in 3rd.