Notes from the field: Vista driver muddle, Google service scuttled

After Cringeman, Bob R, downloaded the business version of Vista and installed it on his brand new Toshiba laptop, his Nvidia GeForce GPU would display only plain vanilla VGA. Turns out that while Microsoft's OS may be ready for OEMs and enterprises, its video drivers may not be. Nvidia spokesfolk said Vista drivers would be available when the OS ships to consumers on January 30, but they encouraged users to download the latest driver from Nvidia's website on that day. Laptoppers like Bob R must get drivers directly from their hardware manufacturers, not Nvidia. I think Vista's old "Bringing clarity to your world tagline" needs an update. How about "Vista: It's what you see before you go over the cliff"?

Clean up on Aisle G: Cringe reader, Clement C, claims Google's Checkout payment service doesn't check out. Not only did he not receive the $US10 discount he was promised, he claims when he called to complain, he got hung up on four times. He's not the only Checkout customer frustrated with delays, phantom discounts, and shoddy customer service. This is what happens when billionaires go to Google Answers (now defunct) and type "How do we create a PayPal killer?"

And music makes money, too: 9/11 is many things: a national tragedy, a wake-up call for America, a turning point for the US nation. But for Taiwanese electronics manufacturer, BenQ, it's a way to sell music players to Chinese youth. As noted by Engadget, BenQ's site features a Chinese homeboy wearing the dogtag-sized MusiQ player in front of the smouldering ruins of the World Trade Center ( benq-uses-wtc-and-9-11-imagery-to-sell-devices). The ad sports the tagline, "I belive, [sic] music makes hope." What does PC stand for, again? Cringester, TR, says he was doing some IT work for a client when a couple of its Sarbanes-Oxley auditors asked him to clarify some acronyms they'd never seen before. What, the auditors asked, do COBOL and IMS/DB2 mean? Meet Doogie Howser, your new SOX auditor.