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Thursday, November 30, 2006

HP Helps Unlock Mysteries of World’s Oldest “Computer”:The Antikythera Mechanism

HP researchers are literally shining a light on what may be the world’s oldest computer.

The Antikythera Mechanism is an ancient astronomical device built by the Greeks around 80 B.C. and found on a shipwreck off the Greek island of Antikythera by sponge divers in 1901. It is believed to have been created to track lunar and solar cycles for agricultural and religious purposes, but its precise function – and how it works – has eluded scholars for more than a century.

In September 2005, members of the Antikythera Research Project invited HP Labs research scientists Tom Malzbender and Dan Gelb to Athens to apply their patented reflectance imaging techniques to the front and rear surfaces of the more than 70 fragments that comprise the mechanism, including metal plates and gears, some of which are inscribed with faded Greek characters.

The technique involves taking photos of an artifact from a fixed point and 50 different light sources arrayed in a hemisphere over the object. The HP researchers’ computer program then ties the images together, enabling an archaeologist to change the angle of light or texture of the surface of the object to make faint markings appear more vivid.

“One of the advantages of reflectance imaging is that you can change the quality of the surface of an object, by, for example, making dull surfaces shiny, like obsidian,” said Gelb, senior research scientist, HP Labs. “That way, the faint markings on these ancient artifacts become more visible and that helps scholars determine their meaning.”

By capturing the images digitally, the technique also enables scholars around the world to study the rare, delicate objects without having to travel to where they’re stored or to handle them.

Some of the reflectance images, technically described as polynomial texture maps, are available at

The results of Malzbender and Gelb’s work, in collaboration with researchers from the U.K. and Greece, appear today in the British science journal, Nature (“Decoding the ancient Greek astronomical calculator known as the Antikythera Mechanism”). The other researchers used an X-ray technique, called computer tomography, to probe the depths of the device.

The new research explains how the gears work and identifies twice as many markings on the device as previously detected.

“The Antikythera Mechanism is the only technological device from the ancient world and the oldest computer or calculator known to man,” said Malzbender, distinguished technologist, HP Labs. “Nothing like it appears until the Renaissance, when clocks first appeared.”

This isn’t the first time that the HP Labs researchers’ work has been used for archaeological purposes. In 2000, Malzbender volunteered the resources of the technology to capture faded Sumerian tablets for researchers at Yale and the University of Southern California. It was this work that caught the attention of the Antikythera project.

The technology was originally developed not for archaeology, but as a method for improving photorealism and rendering efficiency in 3D graphics. It also could be used in criminal forensics, detecting distinctive characteristics in footprints or tire marks, for example.
The technology also still has potential commercial uses for HP, but many of the techniques have been made available to the scientific world for academic purposes.

Sun Microsystems Launches The Big Mashup

Sun Microsystems, Inc. (NASDAQ:SUNW), the creator of the open source Solaris Operating System (Solaris OS), today announced the launch of The Big Mashup (at, a unique online experience examining how the world of entertainment and news gathering is rapidly changing as the network blurs the line between audience and entertainer, viewer and newscaster, fan and producer. With Internet technology—music and movies, broadcast news and blogs, entertainers and audiences—can all converge and mix online. The Big Mashup will feature a documentary with media and entertainment thought leaders, a community blog discussing the impact of changes brought on by the network, and Snapp Radio, an online music and photo application mashup developed by Sun Labs and featuring and RadioParadise streams paired with Flickr images.

"The Internet today is all about participation, collaboration, and community —we all see this every day by the rise of citizen journalism, blogs, podcasts, online videos, and mashups of all kinds," said Ingrid Van den Hoogen, senior vice president of brand and global communications. "Our Big Mashup brings together leading innovators across various new media sectors to address the future of entertainment and the growth in the network which is fueled by community and collaboration."

Chris Melissinos, Sun Microsystems' chief technology officer for Web 2.0 and a self-proclaimed video game addict, hosts the documentary video showcasing entertainment and media thought leaders such as Andrew Baron, founder, and Joanne Colan, host of Rocketboom; Gillian Caldwell, executive director of WITNESS; Joel Hyatt, Current TV's CEO and co-founder; Douglas Rushkoff, writer and lecturer on technology, pop culture and media; Paul D. Miller/DJ Spooky, artist, writer, musician and producer; and Martin Stiksel,'s CCO. These industry pundits will give their perception of how the network has changed for businesses and the way entertainers perform.

Another key component to The Big Mashup is Web 2.0 music application, Snapp Radio, which streams music from or Radio Paradise and weaves in Flickr photos tagged with keywords or emotionally evocative tags corresponding to the song. Links to related communities and websites that explore the new realm of entertainment online will also be included on the site.

The Participation Age

Sun believes the world is entering a new era — a Participation Age — where dramatically lowered barriers to entry, plummeting device prices, and near-universal connectivity are driving a new round of network participation. From blogs to Java technology, SMS messages to Web services, participants are forming communities to drive change, create new businesses, new social services, and new discoveries. This growth in the network economy is fueled by sharing and collaboration among communities interconnected by technology and driven by purpose. Sun also believes that sharing and collaboration in the Participation Age will stimulate innovation to help all participants from across the world grow and prosper.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Scott A. Edwards [] The Blog Spammer Of The Week

Scott A. Edwards is the pimp spam master of the week
Here is a guy who would pimp all kinds of crap to you. He has left at least 100 comments. I remove them right away since I get an email once a comment has been made

Here is one of his so called 'comments'

Check this out for FREE...

This opportunity says:

"Your Ad" Will Be Instantly Displayed on Thousands of Websites and Read By Over 10 Million People Per Week For FREE, and It Only Takes 60 Seconds To Get Started!

To find out more visit: low cost network marketing site. It successfully exposes FREE information covering Traffic and low cost network marketing related stuff.

Don't you think he as a kind of mischievous look like Jack Nicholson in The Shining? I can spot a little smile ( he mast be thinking he will make millions by leaving comments all over the place)

Friday, November 24, 2006

Web 2.0 Summit Video And Podcast Available For Download

Video and audio from the Web 2.0 Summit are now available. Below is what is offered

Video and Audio:
Web 2.0 - A Conversation with Eric Schmidt
Google CEO Eric Schmidt joins Web 2.0 Summit 2006 program chair John Battelle for a conversation. They talk about Google's recent purchase of YouTube and the importance of video as a format. Schmidt explains why Google stood up to the request to provide end-user data. Batelle asks if Google is building an online suite to take on Microsoft Office?

Web 2.0 Summit Opening Session
The week we begin with the opening session from program chairs Tim O'Reilly and John Battelle. They look back at their original notions of the ideas that make up Web 2.0 and preview many of the sessions that you will see in the coming weeks.

Audio only:
Web 2.0 Podcast - a look ahead
The Web 2.0 Summit 2006 wrapped up last night. Two and one half days jam packed with sessions. You'll get to hear and see most of them in this Web 2.0 podcast stream. Next week Tim O'Reilly and John Battelle kick our podcast off with their look at Web 2.0. You'll then hear conversations with Google's Eric Schmidt, IAC's Barry Diller, The New York Times' Arthur Sulzberger, Jr., and Alibaba's Jack Ma.

Lou Reed at Web 2.0
Day two of the Web 2.0 Summit 2006 began with conversations with Jeff Bezos and Bruce Chizen followed by a debate on Net Neutrality between Vint Cerf and Robert Pepper. GoDaddy's Bob Parsons gave the audience advice on running a company. Performer Lou Reed capped off the day with an after dinner set.

Launch Pad at Web 2.0
Before the start of Web 2.0 Summit 2006, 13 companies announced new products at the Launch Pad. We take a quick look at some of them in this report from the show.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

365 Days Later, Xbox 360 Unveils First Wave of TV Shows and Movies on Xbox Live

With a robust library of 160 high-definition games expected by holiday, Xbox 360™, the video game and entertainment system from Microsoft Corp., will get even better today. On its one-year anniversary, Xbox 360 will digitally deliver an initial lineup of TV shows and movies to gamers in the U.S. via Xbox Live®, the online games and entertainment network from Microsoft.

As announced earlier this month, Xbox Live Marketplace will now provide gamers with easy access to hundreds of full-length TV shows for download to own and movies for download to rent from CBS, MTV Networks, Paramount Pictures, Turner Broadcasting System, Inc. (TBS, Inc.), Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) and Warner Bros. Home Entertainment with more content rolled out through Xbox Live Marketplace every week. Xbox 360 is the first gaming console to offer standard and high-definition TV shows and movies via digital distribution.

Since its launch on Nov. 22, 2005, Xbox 360 has gained impressive traction fast. Xbox 360 was the fastest console to reach 5 million sold, and 6 million Xbox 360 consoles had been sold by the end of September 2006. At least 10 million are expected to be sold by holiday. Expected to be available in 37 countries by holiday, Xbox 360 continues to retain record game and accessory attachment rates, according to NPD. With more than 4 million members and an expected 6 million by June 2007, Xbox Live continues its leadership as the first and most comprehensive online games and entertainment network seamlessly integrated throughout the entire Xbox 360 experience.

Xbox 360 is prepared to have a booming holiday season, with consoles readily available at retail along with a host of new accessories such as the Xbox 360 Wireless Racing Wheel, Xbox Live Vision camera and Xbox 360 HD DVD Player, not to mention blockbuster games such as “Gears of War” and “Viva PiƱata™.”

“We’re exactly where we wanted to be this holiday with Xbox 360 retail stock availability,” said Jeff Bell, corporate vice president of global marketing for the Interactive Entertainment Business at Microsoft. “With an incredible library of games, more than 4 million gamers playing online with Xbox Live, and a growing catalog of high-definition gaming and entertainment content, why would anyone wait in line when you can get a superior experience from Xbox 360 right now?”

Examples of the download-to-own TV shows and download-to-rent movies available on the network on Nov. 22 include the following:

  • “CSI,” “CSI: Miami,” “CSI: New York,” “NCIS” and “Star Trek” from CBS
  • “Chappelle’s Show,” “Drawn Together” and Emmy and Peabody award-winning “South Park” from COMEDY CENTRAL
  • “Pimp My Ride” and “Punk’d” from MTV
  • “Avatar: The Last Airbender” and “SpongeBob SquarePants” from Nickelodeon
  • “Skyland” and “Invader Zim” from Nicktoons Network
  • “Chinatown,” “Star Trek VII: Generations,” “Patriot Games,” “Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan,” “The Sum of All Fears,” “The Untouchables” and “We Were Soldiers” from Paramount Pictures
  • “Aqua Teen Hunger Force,” “Frisky Dingo,” “Harvey Birdman, Attorney at Law,” “Sealab 2021” and “The Venture Bros.” from Turner Broadcasting
  • Some of the most intense fights from Ultimate Fighting Championship
  • “Breaking Bonaduce” and “Hogan Knows Best” from VH1
  • “Perfect Storm,” “Poseidon,” The Shining,” “Three Kings” and “V for Vendetta,” as well as “The Nine” and “Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip” along with the CW show “Veronica Mars” from Warner Bros. Home Entertainme

Using the Family Settings feature, parents and individuals can choose the video content that can be played on their family’s Xbox 360. With the availability of this new entertainment content, gamers now can set controls based on movie, TV and video ratings, or they can entirely block explicit and unrated video content for themselves or their children.

Xbox 360 gamers in the U.S. can access Xbox Live Marketplace with a free Xbox Live Silver subscription or a paid Xbox Live Gold subscription and a broadband connection. Pricing is competitive and will vary based on format, media type and whether the content is a new release movie or a classic feature film. High-definition TV shows will be 240 Microsoft® Points per episode, and standard-definition TV shows will be 160 Microsoft Points per episode. New release movies in high definition will be 480 Microsoft Points, and standard-definition new release movies will be 320 Microsoft Points each. Classic feature films in high definition will be 360 Microsoft Points, and standard definition will be 240 Microsoft Points. After purchasing a high-definition TV show or movie, gamers can download the standard-definition version at no additional charge.

Microsoft Points can be purchased at retail or via Xbox Live. For example, gamers can get a 1,600 Microsoft Points card at retail for $19.99 (U.S.) or 1,000 Microsoft Points through Xbox Live for $12.50 (U.S.). More information about Xbox Live Marketplace is available at

Thursday, November 16, 2006

Major Search Engines Unite to Support a Common Mechanism for Website Submission

Sitemaps Protocol Will Enable Google, Yahoo! and Microsoft to Provide More Comprehensive and Fresh Search Results

In the first joint and open initiative to improve the Web crawl process for search engines, Google, Yahoo! and Microsoft today announced support for Sitemaps 0.90 (, a free and easy way for webmasters to notify search engines about their websites and be indexed more comprehensively and efficiently, resulting in better representation in search indices. For users, Sitemaps enables higher quality, fresher search results. An initiative initially driven by Yahoo! and Google, Sitemaps builds upon the pioneering Sitemaps 0.84, released by Google in June of 2005, which is now being adopted by Yahoo! and Microsoft to offer a single protocol to enhance Web crawling efforts.

Together, the sponsoring companies will continue to collaborate on the Sitemaps protocol and publish enhancements on a jointly maintained website, which provides all of the details about the Sitemaps protocol.

How Sitemaps Work

A Sitemap is an XML file that can be made available on a website and acts as a marker for search engines to crawl certain pages. It is an easy way for webmasters to make their sites more search engine friendly. It does this by conveniently allowing webmasters to list all of their URLs along with optional metadata, such as the last time the page changed, to improve how search engines crawl and index their websites.

Sitemaps enhance the current model of Web crawling by allowing webmasters to list all their Web pages to improve comprehensiveness, notify search engines of changes or new pages to help freshness, and identify unchanged pages to prevent unnecessary crawling and save bandwidth. Webmasters can now universally submit their content in a uniform manner. Any webmaster can submit their Sitemap to any search engine which has adopted the protocol.

The Sitemaps protocol used by Google has been widely adopted by many Web properties, including sites from the Wikimedia Foundation. Any company that manages dynamic content and a lot of web pages can benefit from Sitemaps. For example, if a company that utilizes a content management system (CMS) to deliver custom web content -- (i.e., pricing, availability and promotional offers) -- to thousands of URLs places a Sitemap file on its web servers, search engine crawlers will be able to discover what pages are present and which have recently changed and to crawl them accordingly. By using Sitemaps, new links can reach search engine users more rapidly by informing search engine "spiders" and helping them to crawl more pages and discover new content faster. This can also drive online traffic and make search engine marketing more effective by delivering better results to users.

For companies looking to improve user experience while keeping costs low, Sitemaps also helps make more efficient use of bandwidth. Sitemaps can help search engines find a company's newest content more efficiently and avoid the need to revisit unchanged pages. Sitemaps can list what is new on a site and quickly guide crawlers to that new content.

"At industry conferences, webmasters have asked for open standards just like this," said Danny Sullivan, editor-in-chief of Search Engine Watch. "This is a great development for the whole community and addresses a real need of webmasters in a very convenient fashion. I believe it will lead to greater collaboration in the industry for common standards, including those based around robots.txt, a file that gives Web crawlers direction when they visit a website."

"Announcing industry supported Sitemaps is an important milestone for all of us because it will help webmasters and search engines get the most relevant information to users faster. Sitemaps address the challenges of a growing and dynamic Web by letting webmasters and search engines talk to each other, enabling a better web crawl and better results," said Narayanan Shivakumar, Distinguished Entrepreneur with Google. "Our initial efforts have provided webmasters with useful information about their sites, and the information we've received in turn has improved the quality of Google's search."

"The launch of Sitemaps is significant because it allows for a single, easy way for websites to provide content and metadata to search engines," said Tim Mayer, senior director of product management, Yahoo! Search. "Sitemaps helps webmasters surface content that is typically difficult for crawlers to discover, leading to a more comprehensive search experience for users."

"The quality of your index is predicated by the quality of your sources and Windows Live Search is happy to be working with Google and Yahoo! on Sitemaps to not only help webmasters, but also help consumers by delivering more relevant search results so they can find what they're looking for faster," said Ken Moss, General Manager of Windows Live Search at Microsoft.

The protocol will be available at, and the companies plan to have Yahoo! Small Business host the site. Any site owner can create and upload an XML Sitemap and submit the URL of the file to participating search engines.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

MSFT: Bungie Studios Prepares “Halo” Nation to Finish the Fight

On the fifth anniversary of the release of the landmark Xbox® video game “Halo®,” Microsoft Game Studios and Bungie Studios today celebrated the milestone by announcing an exclusive hands-on experience with “Halo 3,” one of the industry’s most anticipated sequels. The Xbox Live® multiplayer public beta, which is a pre-release version of the multiplayer experience of “Halo 3,” is scheduled for availability in spring 2007 exclusively on the Xbox 360™ video game and entertainment system.

In addition, Microsoft and Bungie confirmed today that consumers will be able to experience the “Halo” universe this holiday season through a one-time airing of a stirring, 60-second “Halo 3” teaser ad. And finally it was announced that the new, premium downloadable content for “Halo 2,” exclusive to Xbox 360, is scheduled for release in spring 2007.

“The ‘Halo’ Nation has a nearly insatiable desire,” said Jeff Bell, corporate vice president of global marketing for the Interactive Entertainment Business at Microsoft Corp. “We hope a taste of advance ‘Halo 3’ gameplay satisfies some of their appetite as we count down to the game’s launch later in 2007.”

Expanding on everything that has made the “Halo” franchise so widely recognized, the final version of “Halo 3” will provide a wealth of technical and gameplay advancements, available only through Xbox 360, the leading next-generation video game entertainment system. Via the Xbox Live multiplayer public beta, a first of its kind for the “Halo” franchise, gamers will be able to play online via Microsoft’s premier online entertainment network and participate in a pre-release version of the multiplayer experience of “Halo 3.” This beta also represents an opportunity for gamers worldwide to participate in the development of “Halo 3.” Through the resulting feedback, Bungie Studios will be able to further refine and hone the end result of “Halo 3.”

Unveiled earlier this year at the Electronic Entertainment Expo in Los Angeles, “Halo 3” represents the third chapter in the “Halo” trilogy, an international award-winning action series that grew into a global entertainment phenomenon, selling more than 14.7 million units worldwide, which equals nearly $700 million in sales, and logging in excess of 800 million hours of multiplayer action on Xbox Live.

On Dec. 4, the special 60-second “Halo 3” advertising spot will be broadcast, one time only, on ESPN’s “Monday Night Football.” The ad, created by advertising agency McCann Erickson, will provide viewers with a unique and compelling look at Master Chief and the world of “Halo 3.” It is easily one of the most anticipated ads of the year and promises to be the biggest event in appointment advertising this year. It underscores the innovative approach and driving influence the “Halo” franchise has commanded. The television spot will also be available for download exclusively for Xbox 360 users via Xbox Live Marketplace.

In addition, gamers who have jumped in to Xbox 360 will be able to join legions of Xbox fans next spring in all-new multiplayer maps for “Halo 2” available for download through Xbox Live Marketplace. The exclusive “Halo 2” content will bring new experiences and excitement to the seminal sequel that made entertainment retail history in its first 24 hours — with $125 million in sales — and that boasts more than four billion online matches since its release in November 2004.

“Since its original release, ‘Halo 2’ has redefined online play, delivering superior multiplayer capabilities in addition to an incredible social experience, and nurturing a constantly growing community through Xbox Live,” said Shane Kim, corporate vice president of Microsoft Game Studios. “After five years of rabid fan interest in the ‘Halo’ franchise and with more than 4 million users and counting on Xbox Live worldwide, this is the perfect time to invite fans to join the global ‘Halo’ phenomenon.”

Next-generation high-definition visuals; enhanced artificial intelligence; an advanced real-time lighting engine; and new weapons, characters and challenges are just a few examples of the evolution of design and technology in “Halo 3.” These improvements are designed to give gamers an unparalleled experience and tell an even more compelling and engrossing story. Working in concert with Xbox Live on Xbox 360, “Halo 3” builds on the unique social multiplayer experience of “Halo 2” and promises to expand the innovative and evolving online gameplay and community of “Halo 2” on Xbox Live. In this third chapter of the “Halo” trilogy, Master Chief returns to finish the fight, bringing the epic conflict between the Covenant, the Flood and the entire human race to a dramatic, pulse-pounding climax.

About Bungie Studios

Bungie Studios was founded in 1991 with two goals: to develop games that combine brilliant technology, beautiful art, intelligent stories and deep gameplay, and then sell enough of those games to achieve its real goal of total world domination. Over the past 10 years it has produced games such as the “Marathon Trilogy” and the first two “Myth” games, hailed as classics by critics and gamers around the world. Bungie’s “Halo” franchise is an international award-winning action title that has grown into a global entertainment phenomenon, selling more than 14.5 million units worldwide, logging over 800 million hours of multiplayer action on Xbox Live and spawning action figures, books, a graphic novel, apparel, an upcoming film adaptation and more. Bungie is currently at work on “Halo 3,” which represents the third chapter in this “Halo” trilogy and is slated for release in 2007. More information on Bungie can be found at

Tuesday, November 14, 2006

Zune On Sale Now!

Amazon started to sell the Zune today. If you were getting one would you get the white, black or brown one? People started creating tags already; here are some of them

defectivebydesign (91), drm (22), garbage (5), ipod killer (4), microsoft (3), aac compatible (2), beats apple (2), crap (2), gay (2), gotzuned_dot_com (2), junk (2), laughable (2), weak (2), apple (1), buggy (1)

Try to guess which ones were made by Microsoft haters?

It's going to be a busy tech month. The Playstation 3 and the Nintendo Wii are also coming out this month. The PS3 has just been released in Japan. What you might find interesting, however, is that among those 80 000 happy PS3 owners was at least one who decided it was his or her sacred mission to crack this puppy open for a peek inside.

Click on the link below to see the pics

Monday, November 13, 2006

SUNW: Sun Open Sources Java Platform and Releases Source Code Under GPL License Via NetBeans and Communities

Sun Microsystems, Inc. (NASDAQ: SUNW), the creator and leading advocate of Java technology, today announced it is releasing its implementations of Java technology as free software under the GNU General Public License version two (GPLv2). Available today are the first pieces of source code for Sun's implementation of Java Platform Standard Edition (Java SE) and a buildable implementation of Java Platform Micro Edition (Java ME). Details are available at: In addition, Sun is adding the GPLv2 license to Java Platform Enterprise Edition (Java EE), which has been available for over a year under the Common Development and Distribution License (CDDL) through Project GlassFish at

This announcement represents one of the largest source code contributions under the GPL license (under which the GNU/Linux operating system is also distributed) and the open sourcing of one of the industry's most significant and pervasive software platforms. With more than 3.8 billion Java technology enabled devices, Java technology is showing explosive growth, appearing in volume everywhere. From mobile phones and smart cards to enterprise applications and supercomputers, Java technology provides a unifying platform for software innovation. By open sourcing Java software, while offering commercial products with indemnity for our customers, Sun expects Java technology to become even more pervasive.

"By open sourcing Sun's implementation of Java technology, we will inspire a new phase of developer collaboration and innovation using the NetBeans Integrated Development Environment (IDE) and expect the Java platform to be the foundation infrastructure for next generation Internet, desktop, mobile and enterprise applications," said Rich Green, executive vice president of Software at Sun. "With the Java Development Kit (JDK) released as free software under the GPL, Sun will be working closely with distributors of the GNU/Linux operating system, who will soon be able to include the JDK as part of the open source repositories that are commonly included with GNU/Linux distributions."

"Everyone has been expecting that one day Sun would open source Java technology, but no one expected just how far they'd go – GPL. A bold move, and a great opportunity both for Sun and for free and open source software, " said Tim O'Reilly, founder and CEO of O'Reilly Media.

Java SE

Sun is releasing three significant software components today for the ongoing development of Sun's open source implementation of Java SE in the community: Java HotSpot technology, the Java programming language compiler (javac) and JavaHelp software. Sun expects to release a buildable JDK in the first quarter of 2007, following established free software community practices for licensing virtual machines and their associated libraries. Java HotSpot technology and javac are two of the most important elements of Java SE; Java HotSpot technology is the Sun implementation of the Java Virtual Machine (JVM) and the core component of the Java Runtime Environment (JRE), which translates Java code to the specific operating system and chip architecture, allowing Java software to run everywhere and javac is the compiler that analyzes Java source code for correctness and generates proper bytecodes for execution. JavaHelp software is the documentation system to complement the JDK.

These first components of the OpenJDK project will allow developers to experiment with the compiler, try out new language features, learn how a world-class virtual machine is built, port the JVM to new hardware architectures and operating systems, fix bugs and contribute new features. Through the OpenJDK project, developers will be able to directly influence the future of the JDK implementation, participate with their peers in an open community and help take Java technology where it hasn't been before.

Java ME

Available immediately in the community, is the source code for Sun's feature phone Java ME implementation, the next generation version of the platform that currently enables rich mobile data services in more than 1.5 billion handsets. Also available is Sun's Java ME implementation for the emerging advanced phone segment and the Java ME testing and compatibility kit framework, the foundation for Sun's Java ME compatibility tests. Later this year, Sun will release additional source code including the framework for the Java Device Test Suite.

Sun is releasing these technologies as free software in order to accelerate the development and evolution of the platform, reduce fragmentation and drive down development costs throughout the Java ME ecosystem. In addition, this move will provide easy access to the latest versions of Java ME platform technologies and, for the first time, enable the whole Java ME community to follow the activities of and participate in the development of these technologies.

Java EE

Sun is also announcing that it is now releasing the source code for Project GlassFish (part of the GlassFish Community) under a dual open source license. In addition to CDDL, Project GlassFish will also be available under GPLv2 in the first quarter of 2007. By adding a second license, we simplify the process of combining and distributing GlassFish code with other GPL licensed communities. By offering the Java platforms under a common license, Sun will allow developers to more easily distribute updated versions of Java SE, Java EE and Java ME together.

NetBeans and Sun Development Tools

The NetBeans IDE can dramatically simplify getting started with JDK development because the open source components have already been configured as NetBeans projects. Developers can download the source code, open it in the NetBeans IDE, and use the Build Project command to build it. For further information and a step-by-step tutorial go to: In addition, an application developer project is available as part of the Mobile & Embedded community, with links to resources such as the NetBeans Mobility Pack, the Java ME authoring tool that delivers a whole new level of sophistication and ease for drag-and-drop screen design. Sun is also making available the world-record producing Sun Studio development environment for the development of the platform-specific native code in the Java HotSpot virtual machine.

The recently announced NetBeans 5.5 contains a variety of new features, including: Java Persistence API and JAX WS 2.0 productivity tools, Subversion support, and enhancements to the NetBeans GUI Builder (formerly known as Project Matisse). NetBeans 5.5 is the first and only freely available IDE to provide comprehensive support for Java EE 5, the industry standard for developing portable, robust, scalable, and secure server-side Java applications.

Second Life Event – Technical Q&A

Today, Sun is hosting a technical Q&A in Sun's SecondLife Pavilion to provide an update on its open source Java progress. Sun's Tim Bray, Simon Phipps as well as Canonical's Mark Shuttleworth will be available (in avatar form) for one hour to address any questions you may have.

Tim Bray, Director of Web Technologies, Sun Microsystems (Co-inventor of XML)
Simon Phipps, Chief Open Source Officer, Sun Microsystems
Mark Shuttleworth, Founder, Canonical Ltd. and Ubuntu Foundation (First African in space)

Monday, November 13, 2006 Q&A session from 1:00 p.m. - 2:00 p.m. PT / 4:00 p.m - 5:00 p.m ET

In Second Life, go to: "Sun Pavilion" Or click the following shortcut link:

Download the application at:
System requirements are here:

Developer Support and Services

Sun offers Java technology and Solaris Operating System developers a complete line of developer how-to help, product support and updates, and training that reduces time and risk for the entire application lifecycle--from development through deployment through Sun's Developer Services programs ( ). Developers are also encouraged to join the Sun Developer Network Program, at no cost, by registering online at:

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Hunker Down and Pray for Daylight: “Gears of War” Emerges Today

Hailed as the most-anticipated video game launch of 2006 and punctuated by incredible demand from gamers, “Gears of War” begins appearing in the first retail outlets today, with continued rollout to retailers worldwide. Microsoft Corp. forecasts that “Gears of War,” an exclusive title for the Xbox 360™ video game and entertainment system, is expected to sell more than 1 million copies worldwide this holiday season, setting a new mark for the fastest-selling original game for Xbox®. Starting now, gamers can run for cover and crush the enemy on their own, or take the season’s hottest action title online via Xbox Live®, the world’s largest online gaming and entertainment network, which boasts 4 million members.

“Gears of War,” developed by Epic Games Inc. and published by Microsoft Game Studios, made its debut to great fanfare at the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) in 2005 and has captured the gaze of industry watchers and fans ever since. The intense, genre-defining game thrusts players into humankind’s epic battle for survival against a nightmarish race of creatures known as the Locust Horde. With its combination of cinematic, visceral gameplay, dramatic storytelling and intense action, and with single-player and multiplayer online play via Xbox Live, “Gears of War” is a seminal title for Xbox 360, providing one of the best next-generation interactive entertainment experiences today.

“‘Gears of War’ is a title we know will deliver on all of its promise, and we expect the game to reach 1 million copies faster than any new titles for Xbox,” said Jeff Bell, corporate vice president of global marketing for the Interactive Entertainment Business at Microsoft. “This holiday is an extremely important one for the entire industry, and Xbox 360 will offer the world unparalleled experiences available only on this console. We’ve put an enormous emphasis on bringing new and exciting titles to market, and ‘Gears of War’ is a key example of Microsoft’s commitment to developing original and immersive titles for gamers everywhere.”

Anticipation for the game’s launch today has been growing for several months. Microsoft’s “Match Made in Hell” promotion, a series of pre-release celebrations held throughout October, provided fans with their first opportunity to play the game before it reached store shelves. Headlined by a celebrity launch party in Los Angeles at the Hollywood Forever Cemetery, the “Match Made in Hell” events were besieged by anxious gamers, desperate for their first opportunity to play the game. “Gears of War” has received several highly coveted awards, including the Game Critics Awards’ Best Console Game and Best Action Game of E3 2006, IGN’s E3 2005 Best Xbox 360 Action Game, and a GameSpot’s E3 2006 People’s Choice Award, and has already garnered praise in early reviews, earning a perfect 10 out of 10 score from Official Xbox Magazine and a perfect 5 out of 5 score from G4 TV’s X-Play; that episode will air Wednesday, Nov. 8, at 8 p.m. EST.

“The reception that ‘Gears of War’ has received has been tremendous,” said Cliff Bleszinski, lead designer for “Gears of War” at Epic Games. “Designing ‘Gears of War’ has been a labor of love, and we’ve poured everything we have into the title. We expect this game to be huge, and it’s exhilarating to see that people are as excited about ‘Gears of War’ as we are.”

“We’ve seen tremendous excitement and demand for ‘Gears of War,’ as Xbox 360 fans packed our stores across the country during our special after-hours events for their first chance to play the game,” said Bob McKenzie, senior vice president of Merchandising at GameStop Corp. “‘Gears of War’ is hands down one of the most anticipated games this holiday, and the pre-order numbers we’ve received are astounding and second only to ‘Halo® 2’ for the Xbox platform.”

“Gears of War” from Epic Games and Microsoft Game Studios is a third-person tactical action/horror game available exclusively on Xbox 360. It is available now at select retailers and will be available widely beginning Nov. 12, 2006, in the U.S. for the estimated retail price of $59.99, or $69.99 for a special Limited Collector’s Edition, which will include a collectible embossed metal box, the “Destroyed Beauty” hardbound art book, and a bonus DVD that features the making of “Gears of War,” the “Art of Gears of War” trailer and the MTV program “Gears of War: The Race to E3.”

Microsoft and Epic’s celebration of the game’s release continues on Nov. 12, with a full slate of activities scheduled on Xbox Live, including a 24-hour leader board tournament for online multiplayer matches, hourly sweepstakes drawings offering the chance to win one of several Samsung HT-P29 Dolby 5.1 Surround Sound systems, Game with Fame sessions with “Gears of War” fans Megadeth and members of the Epic development team, and much more. A full list of scheduled events can be found at In addition, due to the popularity of the highly rated MTV “Gears of War: The Race to E3” broadcast, MTV will feature its follow-up to the program, “Gears of War: The Race to Launch,” which follows the birth of the game through the eyes of eager fans waiting for its release and the real-life characters that created it; the program will air on MTV Nov. 13 at 8:30 p.m. and on MTV2 at 9:30 p.m. EST/MST/PST.

Check out the Amazon reviews

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Spam of the day: Mrs.S Zuma

I guess I didn't follow the advise below in red ;-)

Dear Beloved, I am wife of Sacked Deputy President of South Africa, Mr. Jacob Zuma. It is out of desperation that I am sending you this mail. My Husband and I need your assistance in fronting for us as owner of funds that are his which might come under investigation soon if the fund's ownership is not changed soonest. As my Husband's finances are increasingly becoming the source of investigation by our distractors. The source of these fund's which my Husband earnings would not validate, will further sink him into the cesspool dug by our enemies. It is because of the dire strait we find ourselves that we resolved to reach you and ask for your assistance in this matter. We are averse to letting those we know here into this deal because we are no longer sure of who our friends are. You will be handsomely rewarded if you choose to help us partnerhip in this project. I will be expecting to hear from you and will disclose further details to you upon your response. Do well not to disclose the contents of this mail to anyone. Best Regards, Mrs.S Zuma.

Microsoft Rallies Developers to Build Next-Generation Applications

Microsoft releases the .NET Framework 3.0, Visual Studio 2005 Tools for Office for the 2007 Microsoft Office system, ASP.NET AJAX and Microsoft SQL Server 2005 Compact Edition.
Microsoft Corp. unveiled new technologies that enable developers to build next-generation interactive applications for Windows Vista™, the 2007 Microsoft® Office system and the Web. The new technologies are designed to help developers build Web services and connected, service-oriented applications that deliver the levels of security, reliability and differentiation that business and consumers expect.

“With the release of Windows Vista and the 2007 Microsoft Office system, the sky is really the limit on what developers can build — from applications that deliver advanced data visualization to highly connected line-of-business solutions,” said Scott Guthrie, general manager of the Developer Division at Microsoft, during his keynote speech at the Visual Studio® Connections event. “By embracing trends such as AJAX and delivering new technologies for Windows® and Microsoft Office, we are opening the door to entirely new levels of innovation in the software industry while still allowing developers to use their existing skill sets.”

With easy-to-use tools and APIs designed to ensure immediate productivity and a superior user experience, developers can now begin building and testing their applications in advance of the broad availability of Windows Vista and the 2007 Microsoft Office system. The technologies announced today include the following:

• The release to manufacturing of Microsoft .NET Framework 3.0, which provides advances for building rich, interactive client applications (Windows Presentation Foundation), communication and workflow (Windows Communication Foundation and Windows Workflow Foundation) and online identity management (Windows CardSpace).

• The availability to MSDN® Premium subscribers of Windows Vista and the 2007 Microsoft Office system on release to manufacturing.

• The availability of Visual Studio 2005 extensions for the .NET Framework 3.0, a series of plug-ins and project templates that enable developers to use Visual Studio 2005 to build .NET Framework 3.0 solutions.

• The release to manufacturing of Visual Studio 2005 Tools for Office for the 2007 Microsoft Office system to build solutions for the six major applications in the 2007 Microsoft Office system: Office Word, Office Excel®, Office Outlook®, Office PowerPoint®, Office Visio® and Office InfoPath®. Visual Studio 2005 Tools for Office for the 2007 Microsoft Office system enables developers to build scalable, robust line-of-business applications that leverage the functionality of the 2007 Microsoft Office system.

• Beta 2 of ASP.NET AJAX Extensions and the Microsoft Asynchronous JavaScript and XML (AJAX) Library (collectively called ASP.NET AJAX), formerly codenamed “Atlas,” is a free framework that allows developers to quickly create a new generation of more-efficient, more-interactive and highly personalized Web experiences that work across the most popular browsers.

• The release candidate of Microsoft SQL Server™ 2005 Compact Edition, a new offering for essential relational database functionality in a compact footprint. By sharing a familiar SQL Server syntax and common ADO.NET programming model with other editions of SQL Server, SQL Server Compact Edition allows developers and administrators to apply their existing skills and be immediately productive. The release candidate is available via download at

Customers Begin to Ship Solutions Now

Customers have already begun to deliver solutions using the innovative new features in Windows Vista and the .NET Framework 3.0. Mail order and online consumer purchasing leader OTTO uses the power of the .NET Framework 3.0 to create a new shopping experience for more than 10 million retail customers. Consequently, OTTO is able to position itself as a thought leader and innovator in a highly competitive market.

“The OTTO Store is the next-generation shopping experience — fun, personal, confident and secure,” said Thomas Schnieders, vice president of New Media at OTTO. “We could not have delivered this exciting new user experience without the advantages that Windows Presentation Foundation and CardSpace provide.”

These latest technologies have already enabled companies to build compelling Web solutions and realize immediate gains in developer productivity and end-user experience.

“Burton Web site visitors are generally young, tech-savvy kids with extremely high expectations for the content on,” said Bryan Johnston, vice president of Global Marketing at Burton Snowboards. “We need to give our customers the information and features they want so they come back to our Web site over and over again. Microsoft technologies such as ASP.NET AJAX help us deliver the optimal user experience our customers demand.”

Learning and Training Resources Available Now

To enable successful deployment and use of Microsoft products and technologies, Microsoft Learning extends the customer readiness promise to the next generation of Microsoft technologies and offers the latest training products for developers. Along with the upcoming release of the .NET Framework 3.0, training for ASP.NET 2.0 AJAX is now available, with additional offerings for the .NET Framework 3.0 and Visual Studio 2005 Tools for Office for the 2007 Microsoft Office system, shipping in the next few months. Information on the latest learning and training resources from Microsoft is online at

Product Information and Availability

The .NET Framework 3.0, Visual Studio 2005 Tools for Office for the 2007 Microsoft Office system, ASP.NET AJAX and Visual Studio 2005 extensions for the .NET Framework 3.0 are available for immediate download on

Monday, November 06, 2006

Microsoft Office 2007 System Released To Manufacturing

Microsoft Corp. today announced the completion of the 2007 Microsoft® Office system code and confirmed its release to manufacturing (RTM). This gold code milestone concludes the largest Microsoft Office beta program to date, with more than 3.5 million people downloading Beta 2. The unprecedented quantity of feedback from beta testers and customers helped the Office development team effectively validate product quality and optimize performance. Microsoft Office RTM also marks a critical step toward worldwide business availability of the 2007 Office system, Windows Vista™ operating system and Exchange Server 2007 on Nov. 30, 2006. To underscore the significance of this new day for business, Microsoft executives will participate in events around the globe, including an event with Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer in New York. General availability of the products will follow in early 2007.

“We’ve crossed the development finish line, and the team deserves to celebrate,” said Jeff Raikes, president of the Microsoft Business Division. “The 2007 Microsoft Office system RTM completes the most significant improvements to the products in more than a decade. It’s rewarding to be able to send this release off to our customers and help them take the next big leap forward in productivity.”

Today’s RTM begins the delivery of new tools and resources that will allow customers to learn about, try and buy the next release of Microsoft Office:

Learn. Microsoft Office Online has been redesigned to help people learn about what’s new in the 2007 Microsoft Office system. Through the new enhancements, information workers can easily determine which products are best for their needs and find related productivity resources — whether it is assistance from one of the nearly 50,000 new help articles, a how-to refresher through one of the 35 new demos, online training through any of the 24 new courses, downloading one of the more than 400 new templates, or accessing other product downloads and tools.

Try. Starting Dec. 1 in the U.S. and Canada, and coming soon after to an additional 13 international markets,* Microsoft will make available free, downloadable product trials via Office Online. Expanding on the Online Test Drive already available today, the trials will allow people to try the new desktop programs before they decide to buy or upgrade to the 2007 release.

Buy. To support purchase and adoption, the 2007 release of Microsoft Office includes the largest investment in deployment and management tools in the product’s history. IT professionals can significantly reduce the cost and complexity of desktop deployments and upgrades by utilizing resources such as the Office Migration Planning Manager, Open XML Formats Conversion Toolkit, the Business Desktop Deployment 2007 Solution Accelerator, the Office Resource Kit, and more.

Beyond overall code quality for RTM, other notable updates include the following:

SMS Link for Office Outlook® 2007. This new service allows Outlook 2007 users to connect with friends’, families’ and colleagues’ mobile phones by using SMS text messaging. It allows people to send and receive e-mail, contacts, appointments and tasks as text messages to mobile phones.

Localization. Most desktop application products in the 2007 Office system will be comprehensively localized in 38 languages.

Multilanguage support. For the first time, 2007 Office system customers will be able to purchase individual, single-language add-on packs that enable applications and suites to instantly become bilingual. The packs add a secondary localized user interface, help files, dictionary and thesaurus.

More information about the 2007 Microsoft Office system and trying the new SMS Link service can be found by visiting the new Office Online at

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Microsoft to Announce Linux Partnership With Novell

Microsoft is entering into an unusual partnership with Novell that gives a boost to Linux, people familiar with the companies tell

From the article: 'Under the pact, which isn't final, Microsoft will offer sales support of Suse Linux, a version of the operating system sold by Novell. The two companies have also agreed to develop technologies to make it easier for users to run both Suse Linux and Microsoft's Windows on their computers.

The two companies are expected to announce details of their plan today at a press conference in San Francisco. In addition, Microsoft won't assert rights over patents over software technology that may be incorporated into Suse Linux, the people said. Businesses that use Linux have long worried that Microsoft would one day file patent infringement suits against sellers of the rival software.

The URL for the Microsoft press release can be found here

Microsoft Corp. CEO Steve Ballmer will deliver an announcement during a press conference today in San Francisco.

2 p.m. PST, Thursday, Nov. 2, 2006

JW Marriott Hotel San Francisco500 Post St.San Francisco, CA 94102

A live webcast will be available. After the conference has ended, the video will be available for streaming at the same link for at least six months.