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the latest valleyschwag shipment came -- check out the goods!

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eweek labs did a bake off recently and published some findings yesterday in their eWEEK Labs Bakeoff: Open Source Versus .Net Stacks article.

some soundblogbytes:

Even if the .Net stack had bombed convincingly in these tests, it would probably still maintain popularity in many companies. But its strong showing should give companies confidence that the .Net stack will handle most high-level enterprise needs.

the one thing that i didn’t like about the article was the raw publishing of the test results…

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a while back and i saw some stuff about meebo while at a conference.  today i just saw that was released.  same concept really, a web-based-super-nifty-ajax-enabled messenger ‘client’ that enables access to all messenger clients.

one thing that strikes me as odd is how willing we’d be to give a third party our login information…isn’t that one reason why everyone hated the passport idea?

anywhoo…check it out:

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Microsoft preparing launch of iPod rival

well, i can honestly say i don’t know anything about these plans…but i can say i *hope* microsoft gets it right…and by that i mean:

  • don’t just have wmv/wma as the only supported formats: if this is the case, it will fail.  it will fail for me immediately.  mp3 is a decent format.  okay, okay, stand back drm hounds…but seriously…would you buy any music media device that doesn’t support mp3?  and video…let’s make sure it plays mpeg, avi, wmv, mov, etc.
  • size: seriously…with the lessons learned from ipod, it should be clear that size matters ;-) — i hope it is relatively small enough so that i don’t feel like i’m carrying a huge device, but also big enough for a decent screen
  • capacity: let’s not make the same mistake that the other ipod rivals did — yeah, 64MB mp3 players…NOT!  if this is a music/video media device than IMO 5GB is the *minimum*
  • wifi?! — sweet…that would be really cool for podcast subscriptions…now you don’t have to sync/copy/whatever — you subscribe…and when you are in-range, it downloads — great idea
  • partner with 3rd party integrators: i have an older car (2000) and i hate that there are no integrated hookups.  i mean, i have all the other features: navigation, cd changer, etc. — just nobody is making them for older cars (that integrate with the headunit — i don’t want to see my ipod in my car)

i really hope design-wise they take a lesson from apple (and from past designs).  i have an ipod.  i like my ipod.  why?  because it serves a single purpose for me…play audio.  it is lightweight and small enough that i make sure i bring it with me to places.

well, i hope we get it right…i really do — i’d love to see a cool microsoft device.  but my fear is that we are a software company, not a hardware one…it always concerns me when we enter these arenas, as a user, technologist, and a shareholder (how much are we losing on each xbox sold?).  sometimes it isn’t enough just to enter the market…we have to be smart about it.

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today, microsoft is announcing a funding of a project to build the , which is a set of tools to translate between office openxml and odf documents.

msft is also announcing an interop center for office 2007, which apparently is an add-in for office 2007 where you'll get PDF XLS and ODF interop.

anyhow, interesting news -- probably moreso that msft is funding this open source effort for three partners for a project hosted on sourceforge...hey, couldn't they at least have said ? ;-)

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