Sunday, January 20, 2008

Technological Digest VIII

Some short observations this week:
  1. CES, the Consumers Electronics Show, was held in Las Vegas last week. I looked at the hundreds, nay, thousands of reports coming out of the show, and didn't find a single one worth mentioning.
    New plasma screens, flash cards, Bluetooth headphones... (yawn) - nothing we haven't seen before.

    Yes, it was Bill Gates's last CES keynote, but then again, in the last 3 years, everything was "Gate's last something".

    If you still want to get the play-by-play for this, Engadget did a pretty good job of (over) covering the entire show - dig for interesting gadgets here.

  2. On the other side of the Sierras, in San Francisco, Steve Jobs conducted his MacWorld show.
    As you may have heard, this year's "iPhone" is called MacBook Air - a thin (not the thinnest as claimed, but pretty close) notebook.
    When I saw it first (in real time, following the show online), I immediately thought "got to get me one of those!". I started adding another post to the "Beautiful PC" (here and here) series, when my eye caught the specs.

    Hold on! I'll be paying $1800 for what? 80Gb HD? a non-replaceable battery (iPod anyone?)? No network port? No DVD drive? Mono audio? One USB port?

    Hello Steve, are you there? Has the Design department taken over the company? Is the new Apple motto "Form over Functionality"?

    I think I'll sit this one out.

  3. A wave of major acquisitions last week: Oracle finally managed to snag BEA ($7.85bn). Sun, on the other hand, took over the open source community's favorite DB, MySQL ($1bn).

    I wonder what's the logic behind Sun's step - they were never a great software company, and irritating Microsoft, at this stage (after finally caving in and starting to sell Windows machines) is a sure way to wake up the Redmond giant (just ask Netscape RIP).

    Regardless, my suggestion is grab the latest version and its source - who knows if we'll ever see them again.

  4. Amazon is encountering resistance from the French government, on its free shipping initiative. I enjoy it immensely: every order over $25 is shipped to me free.
    But the French see that as an unfair competition to the local mom-and-pop bookstores. The court ordered a fine of 1000 Euro per day of violation.
    I guess Amazon are making way over a 1000 Euro a day - because they keep doing it.

    I wonder what will the French do when Walmart rolls over...

  5. Sears decided to fight Walmart on the "cheap PC" front, offering a $185 Linux PC.
    To remind you, Walmart's offering is $199 (read The Cheapest PC Available (Currently)).
    Well, it's actually $285 with a $100 mail-in rebate. I hate rebates. I'd rather pay $14 more and avoid it.

  6. Finally, here's something I saw online yesterday. This resonated with me so much (I just came back from refueling my car), that I decided to share it with you:


Anonymous said...

nice post.
here is an Israeli side of the new mac Air

Traveling Tech Guy said...

Great link. Just make sure you can read Hebrew.

avi said...

Some say that Oracle is after a BI solution. Gartner says BI market will be $B7 in 2011, hence everyone's deep pockets.