NOTES FROM THE FIELD: iPods may play flicks, SCO up to old tricks

NOTES FROM THE FIELD: iPods may play flicks, SCO up to old tricks

My prickly yet paranoid editor can't believe I could be this happy without a job offer in my pocket. I swear he's having me followed. I'm starting to feel like I did something heinous, like unveil a covert CIA agent or leak Apple trade secrets.

The vids are all right: The Wall Street Journal has predicted a September release for a video iPod. While Apple plays deaf-and-dumb, Cringester John H noted that when you try to reach, you get a "Forbidden - You don't have permission to access/movies on this server" error instead of Apple's typical "Page Not Found" message. You can usually tell an Apple rumour is true by the flock of attorneys slowly circling the rumour blogs. So far the skies are clear, but they may have turned on their cloaking devices.

Smoking gun control: Groklaw has published an August 2002 email to SCO chief, Darl "Dark Side" McBride, stating that a SCO investigation failed to produce evidence of Unix copyright infringement in Linux. SCO countered by producing a 1999 memo claiming Linux did too steal Unix code, so neener-neener (or something like that). I bet they had to rent Mr. Peabody's Wayback Machine to find that chestnut.

Nothing to crow about: When Dell closed its Customer Care forums on July 8, critics claimed it was trying to clamp down on the boards' "Dell Hell" messages (1701 at last count). Dell said it was just trying to protect customers' privacy and route their questions to the right reps. At press time Dell had just reopened its "General (Non-Technical)" forum for comments - though the phrase "Dell Hell" has been mysteriously banned. In other news, the company hired spokesinger Sheryl Crow to croon her new single, Good Is Good (and Bad Is Bad), on its TV spots. Hmm, I wonder which one Dell is?

Starbucks sawbucks: Cringeman Chris G recently completed an online quiz from HP, making him eligible to win a gift card from Starbucks worth $10 - almost enough for a grande double latte. Now that HP CEO, Mark Hurd, is slashing thousands of jobs, they can probably spare the 10-spot.

Got hot tips or video-pod prototypes? Send them to; you may earn a bag for your efforts.

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