NOTES FROM THE FIELD: Merger gossip abounds

NOTES FROM THE FIELD: Merger gossip abounds

Whereas most people, including yours truly, might feel like it's time to relax and wind down for the year, others are cranking up the dial. Amber is one of them, recently landing a job at a South San Francisco biotech company - about the only industry you'll get a job in these days.

Mergers and acquisitions

But on the IT front, I've heard a bunch of merger gossip from my spies. First up, EDS is generating buzz as some believe it's trying to stitch down a deal to buy failed hosting outfit Exodus Communications. If successful, the deal would pitch EDS against IBM Global Services' hosting arm. Also on the hosting front, managed service provider Totality is believed to be interested in acquiring struggling ASP Breakaway Solutions.

Another rumour I find intriguing involves Veritas, and renewed suggestions it's close to sealing a deal to buy a vendor in the CDN (content delivery network) space. Rumours of this are not entirely new, with companies like Akami Technologies and CacheFlow mentioned in the sea of speculation. But it is Inktomi that has my spies talking. My spy quotes a reliable source within Veritas saying, "terms sheets are on the table as we speak".

And then, just to spice up the story, I hear Sun is also interested in buying a big player in the CDN space. Inktomi and CacheFlow are prime candidates, my spy says. Incidentally, Sun already uses Inktomi's search technology across its internal and external Web sites.

Mind meld

Talking Web sites, here's a case of poor copy editing for your amusement. On a page at Computer Associates' site promoting BrightStor Enterprise Backup Client Agents, it boasts about a unique feature I bet you were not aware of: "Increased security, thought access control lists." (And we thought only Microsoft and Oracle were trying to make this type of feature work.)Finally, I received a note from New York's OS/2 User Group last week that falls into the "had to happen" category, so consider it a public service announcement.

On December 13, the group will meet one final time at 590 Madison Avenue "to celebrate the greatness that was OS/2".

It seems this user group has finally run out of steam for the venerable operating system - a sign of the times perhaps? Of course, plenty of people are happy to see the back of OS/2, but if you're a fan in the New York area, drop by for some bubbly and a chat about the "good old days".

"They are actually normal people!" Amber said of her new biotech co-workers. For some reason, she had pictured working with faceless white suits. Thankfully, they seem well-versed in Star Wars and Life of Brian quotes, so it can't be too bad.

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