1/9/2006

Google newspaper ads

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Google is expanding its advertising reach to include newspapers. The search giant is running classified-like ads in the pages of the Chicago Sun-Times, according to a report in Chicago Business.

“The deal, terms of which were not disclosed, allows Google to fill what’s known as ‘remnant space’ in the Sun-Times — unsold space where the paper would normally run in-house ads,” the report says. A Google spokesman confirmed the “limited test.”

Source: News.com

Customers Say Company Never Sent Items

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

More than a thousand customers didn’t receive items they ordered from a company that does business through Amazon.com Inc., forcing the massive online retailer to offer refunds.

Amazon.com spokeswoman Patty Smith said Monday that the outside seller, which is listed as “mygreatchoice,” received outstanding customer ratings after it first began selling on Amazon.com in July. But Amazon.com noticed a big decline in customer satisfaction starting in late November.

Seattle-based Amazon.com pulled mygreatchoice from its Web site on Dec. 8, but by then many customers were already complaining that their holiday gifts hadn’t been delivered. Mygreatchoice primarily sold DVDs.

Smith said the company’s fraud team was investigating.

Source: AP

More Unpatched Bugs Loose In Microsoft WMF

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Just days after Microsoft rushed out a patch for a bug in Windows Metafile (WMF) image processing, a security company has warned customers that multiple memory corruption vulnerabilities in the same rendering engine could leave users open to attack.

“An attacker may leverage these issues to carry out a denial-of-service attack or execute arbitrary code,” Symantec said in a vulnerability alert issued through its DeepSight Management System.

The bugs may be associated with the one patched Thursday by Microsoft, but they involve different functions of the Windows WMF rendering engine, added Symantec, which highlighted the various values and structures within the engine which could be exploited.

“Reports indicate that these issues lead to a denial-of-service condition, however, it is conjectured that arbitrary code execution is possible as well,” the Symantec alert went on.

If true, the dangers of these new vulnerabilities are identical to the flaw that Microsoft fixed last week. Like that bug, these newly-discovered vulnerabilities can be exploited with a maliciously-crafted WMF file that’s posted on a Web site, opened from an e-mail attachment, or launched with Microsoft or third-party image applications

Source: informationweek

Microsoft to hunt for new species of Windows bug

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Microsoft plans to scour its code to look for flaws similar to a recent serious Windows bug and to update its development practices to prevent similar problems in future products.

The critical flaw, in the way Windows Meta File images are handled, is different than any security vulnerability the software maker has dealt with in the past, Kevin Kean and Debby Fry Wilson, directors in Microsoft’s Security Response Center, said in an interview with CNET News.com. Typical flaws are unforeseen gaps in programs that hackers can take advantage of and run code. By contrast, the WMF problem lies in a software feature being used in an unintended way.

In response to the new threat, the software company is pledging to take a look at its programs, old and new, to avoid similar side effects.

“Now that we are aware that this attack vector is a possibility, customers can be certain that we will be scrubbing the code to look for any other points of vulnerability based on this kind of attack,” Fry Wilson said.

Source: News.com

No Growth for IT Salaries

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Most information technology workers saw little growth in their salary levels during 2005, and many of the professionals shouldn’t expect to see significant pay increases any time soon, according to the latest industry wage survey published by researchers Monday.

In the preliminary results of its January 2006 IT Salary Survey, research firm Janco Associates said that the mean compensation for computer industry professionals remained relatively flat over the final quarter of 2005, as it has since the beginning of calendar 2004, marking eight straight quarters of level performance.

According to the study, only top IT executives and workers in several hot technology sectors experienced noticeable gains over the last four months, while some companies have begun hiring more contractors in place of full-time workers to help lower their staff-related overhead expenses.

Source: eWeek

DRM keeps Spielberg’s Munich out of award-voters’ hands

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Steven Spielberg will most likely not get any nomination for the BAFTA (British Film Academy) awards for “Munich” because of a massive DRM cock-up. BAFTA’s 3,000+ members were sent encrypted ’screener’ DVDs that can only be played on special DVD players supplied by Cinea (www.cinea.com - a Dolby subsidiary). First the DVDs were held up by UK customs, thereby missing the first round voting deadline. But when they arrived, they would not play on any machine because they had been mastered for Region 1 (North America). As BAFTA members are cannot vote for films they have not seen and only a handful of preview screenings have been held, the film ought to be disqualified from consideration.

Source: boingboing

Court Ruled - EMule Links Are Illegal

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

An Israeli court ruled that links to copyrighted files are illegal.

The Israeli movie and music associations (the Israeli RIAA and MPAA) sued the leading Israeli file sharing sites lionetworks.net and lala.co.il in a demand to remove links to emule and bittorrent files containing copyrighted movies and music.

In a ruling made Sunday by a Regional Court in Haifa, Israel the judge wrote that the file sharing sites violate copyright law by providing direct links to emule files containing copyrighted material.

The judged also said that this ruling only applies to copyrighted material owned by these organization (movies and music only) and does not apply to other material that might also be protected by IP laws, such as software, book, pornographic movies and other kind of music and movies that belong to companies that did not take part in this law suit.

The ruling said that for each link posted by these sites, the sites operators will have to pay 20,000 NIS (~$5000), and also the sites will have to pay for illegal links posted by users unless they remove the links in question in a timely manner.

Court lets Univ. of Texas block spam

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday declined to intervene in a dispute between the University of Texas and an online dating service upset that the school blocked thousands of unsolicited e-mails.

The high court let stand a federal appeals court’s ruling that UT did not violate the constitutional rights of White Buffalo Ventures when it blocked 59,000 e-mails in 2003.

White Buffalo Ventures, which operates LonghornSingles.com, said it had complied with all anti-spam laws and argued that a federal act that allows certain e-mails superseded the university’s anti-spam policy.

A 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals panel ruled in August that the federal anti-spam law, CAN-SPAM, does not pre-empt the university’s policy and that the policy is permissible under the First Amendment.

The Austin-based service had legally obtained the addresses from the university, but the university started blocking the e-mail messages saying White Buffalo was part of a larger spam problem that had crashed the computer system.

Source: AP

Adobe Adds MS Office Support To Management Software

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Adobe has bought the DRM division of CAD software maker Navisware for an undisclosed sum. The purchase will see it expand supported formats to include Microsoft Office.

Adobe will integrate Navisware’s FileLine DRM technology with its LiveCycle Policy Server software - used by companies to set security policies for who can access electronic documents and to keep track of who views and edits them.

With Navisware, Adobe will be able to protect documents in native Microsoft Office and CAD formats as well as Adobe’s own PDF format.

Yahoo Offer Free Lobby Internet In Sheraton Hotels

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Travelers can stay connected without lugging a laptop at certain Sheraton hotels offering free Yahoo-sponsored Internet access at lobby computers, the companies said on Monday.

“This is an opportunity to bring Yahoo beyond the desktop,” said Murray Gaylord, vice president of brand marketing at Yahoo Inc., the world’s largest Internet media site.

The companies are conducting pilot projects at the Sheraton San Diego Hotel & Marina and Sheraton Boston, where a section of lobby has been reconfigured with work stations at round conference-type tables as well as sofas and other comfortable seating. The Wi-Fi and broadband Internet service can also be accessed without charge from the hotels’ guest rooms.

Sheraton is the largest and most global hotel brand operated by Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide Inc.

Source: Reuters

Adobe unveils Lightroom; Aperture competitor

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Adobe on Monday will announce the public beta release of Lightroom, the company’s answer to Apple’s recently release Aperture. Adobe will release Lightroom as a public beta for the Macinstosh to get feedback from professional photographers before releasing the full version later this year, the company said.

“We see this as the efficient, new way for photographers to import, develop and showcase large volumes of images,? Kevin Connor, Director Digital Imaging Product Management, told Macworld.

The Lightroom beta has an interface more similar to Aperture than any other Adobe application. In Lightroom control panels and tools fade into the background in Lights-Out mode, allowing the image to take center stage.

Photographers also can rapidly scroll through hundreds of images and Quick One-to-One Zoom allows instant magnification of the finer points within the image.

Adobe readily admits that Lightroom does offer some of the same features of Photoshop, but contends that the application also offers a completely new workflow for photographers.

Source: MacWorld

Eclipse rises victorious

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Although it began as an IBM endeavor in 2001, the Eclipse open source tools platform has come into its own, emerging as both an alternative to Microsoft in the application development space and the de facto standard for developing in Java.

Overtaking Sun Microsystems’ rival NetBeans open source platform, Eclipse is expanding the depth of technologies it is pursuing and its membership numbers. Key to attracting wider vendor involvement across the Java space, Eclipse was spun out of IBM in 2004 and is now under the jurisdiction of the not-for-profit Eclipse Foundation, which has gathered the backing of BEA Systems and Borland Software.

“Some of IBM’s fiercest competitors are strategic members that sit on our board of directors,? said Ian Skerrett, Eclipse director of marketing.

In fact, BEA, not IBM, took the lead on the Eclipse Web Tools Platform, released last month, Skerrett noted.

“You wouldn’t see so many vendors flocking to support [Eclipse] if they were still concerned that IBM still dominates Eclipse,? said Carl Zetie, analyst at Forrester Research.

Source: Info World

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