NOTES FROM THE FIELD: Microsoft’s Hummer, SCO’s bummer

NOTES FROM THE FIELD: Microsoft’s Hummer, SCO’s bummer

It’s only May, but I already know what I want for Christmas: a Windows-powered Hummer. The Redmond renegades introduced a prototype of an MS-driven urban assault vehicle at last week’s WinHEC conference in Seattle. I understand it worked great: About three minutes after the key was turned, the Hummer started up and set out looking for other vehicles to crush.

Dudley do-wrong: Recently, the Royal Bank of Canada sold two-thirds of its shares in the world’s Most Despised Technology Company (that’s The SCO Group, to you) to BayStar Capital LP. When the Canadians lose faith, you know you’re in trouble (unless you’re SCO and wouldn’t recognise trouble if it bit you in the Yukon). That leaves BayStar as the last wooden leg propping up SCO’s mega-billion- dollar lawsuits. Considering that the venture capital firm has publicly expressed concerns about SCO’s management team, I can’t imagine CEO Darl McBride is feeling too cozy right now.

Hard evidence: Bet you thought I was just kidding last week about the Microsoft spam connection (heck, I thought I was just kidding). But consider this: Sir Bill recently paid a $US800,000 fine because his money folks, Cascade Investment, failed to notify the FTC when it purchased more than 10 per cent of pharma company ICOS. As some of you probably know, ICOS makes the anti-impotence drug Cialis. If your inbox is engorged with Cialis spam (mine sure is), well, now we know why.

That’s quite a ringtone you’ve got there: In related news, wireless carriers in Europe are apparently gearing up to deliver adult videos to 3G mobile phones. Gartner estimates the mobile fleshpot market will be worth a whopping $US1.5 billion by 2005. No word yet on whether you’ll have to pay extra when you set the phone to vibrate.

By the tail: According to the Mac gossip mill, Apple Computer has code-named the next version of its OS “Tiger”. I’d be careful about getting too close to it. Just look what happened to Siegfried & Roy.

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