The Golden Braid

Weaving Wonderful Worlds

WGA Debate

I am by no means an advocate of the Windows Genuine Authentication initiative, but I do understand their attempts to put a stopper on rampant copying of their software. I think that it would be in Microsoft’s best interest to have a healthy dialogue with its users about how and when to go about this in the proper way.

That being said, I think it is also in poor form on the user’s end to point fingers at seemingly innocuous details. Sensationalist comments like this do nothing more than drum up support for specters of the real Intellectual Property debate. I have already noticed that the author’s comment has been “dugg” and is quickly climbing on the site’s front page. I ask that anyone that reads this to stand back and take a moment to muster a true perspective of the topic in question.

Microsoft’s PR response in the comment was that 80% of WGA positives are due to the unlawful duplication of volume license keys. Microsoft has already confirmed that many of these are likely due to pirated copies of its OEM versions that have been reverse engineered to dodge its initial activation step in some way. There is nothing surprising about this, as XP enterprise versions and volume license keys are targeted because they were engineered to avoid this activation step. This does not imply that there are not other methods around activation; it is simply the most actively used method because it is the easiest. While one may read into the comment thinking that WGA is throwing false positives once for every 5 legal keys, the real number is likely a tiny fraction of that.

The author should be commended for his pursuit of the truth, but my opinion is that we don’t need to “call up the troops” to support something that may not even be an issue yet.

It will be become quite evident if any real news comes from this. Meanwhile, there is really nothing exciting about this story as of yet. Move along.

July 4, 2006 Posted by | Daily thoughts, technology | Leave a comment

Processor Battle Heats Up

AMD is getting serious about losing the performance crown to Intel’s Core processor. They are making sweeping cuts to streamline their channels but are apparently not in the best of strategic positions to do so at the moment. The move by Intel appears to have caught AMD off gaurd, a tactic AMD initially used in tandem with an aggressive pricing strategy to garner its market share with their first socket-based Athlon line. This round of the fight is the first in which Intel has brought a true competitor since AMD’s rise from the ashes…. are both companies agile enough to survive a few more punches?

AMD will be able to buy some time for their newer AM2 configs if they hurry their quad-core to market. If you can’t beat them with one core… why not add a few more?! Well, power consumption might play a tiny role ;).

July 3, 2006 Posted by | technology | Leave a comment

iLiad E-Reader is Now Shipping Orders

I’ve been waiting for this one for awhile. The iRex iLiad E-Reader is the first ebook to feature electronic ink. It has a wide variety of available features and document formats. The only downside is the price-point at 649 euros. Hopefully this will lower as production ramps up and Sony introduces its Sony Reader; a competitive product utilizing e-Ink due near the end of the quarter.

Is this the end of the traditional book as we know it? The outcome is not likely if you take previous forays into replacing pulp-fiction into account. Despite this, I do have to admit that this is a pretty nice piece of gear.

July 3, 2006 Posted by | technology | Leave a comment

Confirmed: SMART cars coming to USA

I have wanted a SMART since I saw a review of the roadster on Top Gear. I take that back…I’ve wanted an efficient “zippy” car forever, whether or not the SMART is that car remains to be seen.

Digg Text:
“DaimlerChrysler is going to announce tomorrow that the SMART car will come to the United States in early 2007. That’s the word from three major newspapers citing insider sources! This comes after months of speculation. ”

read more | digg story

June 26, 2006 Posted by | technology | 3 Comments

WinFS is Dead. Long Live Vaporware!

Well that's it… one of the most anticipated development projects in Chicago or Whistler or Blackcomb or Longhorn, has finally been rolled out of Windows outright.

To summarize, the surviving portions of the underlying technology will be included with the next releases of SQL Server (codename Katmai) and Visual Studio's ADO.NET (codename Orcas). The features will make their way to Windows when they are "mature" enough.

I wonder if this had anything to do with the recently elevated security concerns over SQL injection attacks. The WinFS security guy did seem a bit jumpy in the Channel 9 coverage of the Bluehat 2006 security conference.

Anyway….For the official politically spun low-down on the situation
What's in Store : WinFS Update:

June 24, 2006 Posted by | technology | 2 Comments

Can a service be “Too Interactive”?

I don’t know whether to laugh or cry.
“Internet firm Tiscali has suspended its music sharing Juke Box and accused the European recording industry of being “virtually impossible to work with”. It took the move after it was told to remove the service’s search by artist.” – BBC News

read more

June 8, 2006 Posted by | technology | Leave a comment

On second thought.

Perhaps I was a bit hasty in my lust for lust for devices that glow and beep. I would rather wait until this "cools down".

May 20, 2006 Posted by | Daily thoughts, technology | 1 Comment

The great debate.

The MacBook Pro just got a sexy little sister and I've been considering purchasing one. I honestly haven't done much more than ogle a Mac in a retail environment since Ye Olde HyperCard days.

Is this the path of righteousness or shall my soul be purged in eternal fire for the mere inference to candy flavored electronics?

May 16, 2006 Posted by | Daily thoughts, technology | 3 Comments

Senator To AT&T: You Don’t Own The Net

AT&T, Verizon and other telcos have been warning that they’re going to demand money from Google and other sites if those sites want adequate bandwidth. But now a senator is proposing to ban the practice, and is standing up to the telcos, who are acting more like a cybermafia than legitimate businesses.

read more | digg story

March 2, 2006 Posted by | Politics, technology | Leave a comment

Quantum computer solves problem, without running

Using an optical-based quantum computer, a research team led by physicist Paul Kwiat has presented the first demonstration of “counterfactual computation,” inferring information about an answer, even though the computer did not run.

read more | digg story

February 22, 2006 Posted by | Science, technology | Leave a comment