Even being the richest man in the world doesn't stop you
from getting a pie in the face.
"But godliness with contentment is great gain."
1 Timothy 6:6 (NIV).
AMD on the Bandwaggon
Posted 14 November 1999.
The oval-shaped "EasyNow" PC, which will be offered
in several hues, is AMD's entry into the world of stylized computers,
a hot market that was inspired by Apple Computer's iMac and Sony's
portable Vaio. The EasyNow box will sport a colorful translucent
case and shed traditional features such as a built-in floppy drive.
"Some of the stuff I have seen in back rooms is great, and
some of it is stupid looking," said Roger Kay, an analyst at
International Data Corporation. "There will be winners and
losers in the style game."
AMD will not make these computers, leaving that instead to PC manufacturers.
Nonetheless, the chipmaker had a big hand in the effort, said Dana
Krelle, vice president of marketing. AMD commissioned the design
and licenses it to PC makers on the condition that they use K6-2
chips inside it.
Monopoly Grunt in Action
Posted 16 November 1999.
From the great guys and gals at CNet (Joe Wilcox in this case), in an
article dated 15 November 1999:
A software update for Microsoft's corporate-use operating system introduced
a bug that could potentially cripple Lotus Notes unless companies compromise
The bug in Windows NT Service Pack 6 prevents users from accessing
Lotus Notes without administrator rights--the highest and broadest level
of network access, typically reserved for network managers. Companies
generally restrict user access to prevent security breaches or catastrophic
accidental changes to PCs or servers.
The bug puts companies that have installed the service pack in a bind,
possibly forcing them to grant users temporary administrator privileges
in order to use Lotus Notes. The Redmond, Washington-based software
maker is advising customers using Lotus Notes not to apply Service Pack
6 until a fix is released later this week.
Microsoft's Latest Keyboard
Posted 7 December 1999.
They've finally resigned themselves. This new model has all the keys
you'll ever need.
Posted 7 December 1999.
This is the latest IBM Thinkpad out, as advertised in the Canadian edition
of TIME magazine. But wait! What's that on the screen? Macintosh
Netscape Communicator 4. HA!
Check Out That Cheque
Posted 25 January 2000.
The story first comes to light:
CNET News, 27 December 1999.
A Linux user is taking credit for restoring service to Microsoft's
Hotmail free email service, saying he paid a delinquent domain name
registration fee that blocked access to some users over much of the
Michael Chaney, a Linux consultant from Nashville, Tenn., said he paid
the bill by credit card through the online payment service of domain
name registrar Network Solutions after he was denied access to his Hotmail
account on Christmas Eve.
"I wasn't trying to embarrass Microsoft," he said in an interview
with CNET News.com. "I figured it would make life a lot easier
to a lot of Hotmail users."
Neither Microsoft nor Network Solutions could be reached immediately
to confirm Chaney's account of how the problem was solved. It was unclear
how many users were affected.
The lapse, which was first reported on the Internet news service Slashdot.org,
was apparently caused when Microsoft's registration for the Passport.com
domain name expired sometime Dec. 24, Chaney said. The Passport.com
site verifies user identification and passwords for access to Hotmail
and about 25 other services, according to Chaney.
Chaney said he paid the bill Dec. 25 at about 2 p.m. EST and was given
invoice #11395965 documenting the transaction. An electronic copy of
the receipt can be viewed at his Web site at "www.doublewide.net."
Hotmail service was likely restored by 5 a.m. the following day during
a normally scheduled server update, he said.
Chaney said Microsoft has yet to contact him to thank him for his actions
or to offer to reimburse the $35 registration fee.
Posted 25 January 2000
And a follow-up to the check (sic) story:
CNET News 18 January 2000.
eBay bidders were stepping forward today to snatch up a $500 reward
check Microsoft gave a computer consultant over the weekend as a thank
you for paying a $35 bill for the company's Hotmail domain name.
Consultant Michael Chaney put the check up for auction Sunday to raise
money for a charity of the bidder's choice, pledging to match up to
Chaney said he had no idea his check would fetch much more than its
But as word got out today, the check quickly became a hot item. By
3 p.m. PST, a registration site put in a bid for $2,500 for the check.
"This is a great way for us to purchase a physical reminder that
without attention to detail, big things can go wrong," Richard
Lau, president of the registration site YourNameFree.com, said in an
email. "Besides, when else will we get the opportunity to have
a check from Microsoft?"
The episode began Christmas Eve when Chaney, a Linux consultant from
Nashville, Tenn., was denied access to his Hotmail account.
He learned through Slashdot, an online discussion group, that Microsoft
failed to pay the $35 fee to Networks Solutions for the Passport.com
Web address, which had expired Dec. 24. The Passport.com site verifies
user identification and passwords for access to Hotmail and about 25
When the domain name lapsed, some users seeking to access their accounts
received error messages indicating the domain was unavailable.
Chaney then went to the Network Solutions site and paid the fee with
his credit card.
"I didn't do it to help Microsoft," he said in an interview
this morning. "I did it to help the Hotmail users."
Microsoft representatives could not be immediately reached for comment.
Chaney said he was surprised to see the amount on the check when he
received it via Airborne Express Saturday morning.
"I knew they were sending me a check, but I didn't know what the
amount would be," he said. "They always just referred to it
as 'the check.' I didn't know if it was going to be $35 or $15 or what."
Chaney said he never intended to cash the check. He put the item up
for auction on Sunday, and it will remain open to bidders for another
So to summarize, at least US$4500 to charity, arising from a US$35 unpaid
bill. Well done, Michael Chaney. (Certainly resulted in lots of incredibly
cheap advertising for him, and bids close in just two more days, for those
Posted 25 January 2000.
If your browser of choice is Microsoft's Internet Explorer 4.5, you will
have a problem with online shopping and other services that require security
certificates. These certificates are set to expire at the stroke of midnight
on 31 December 1999 and unless you update your copy of IE 4.5, you will
be unable to shop and bank securely in the new year.
But hey, if you're using any version of MSIE, maybe you don't care about
Posted 25 January 2000.
From a reasonably loyal user of much Wincrud software came this exclusive
As part of my search for an updated IPass phone list in a form useable
to us Psion users, I came across this on the IPass site:
"iPass does not currently support Windows CE because Windows CE
dialers can not implement dial-in scripts and the majority of iPass
POPs require the running of scripts after modem negotiation."
That sounds like yet another reason to keep away from Windows CE!!
No Copper In The Mine
Posted 7 February 2000.
From one of those sources I just love...
The industry is abuzz with stories of Intel experiencing severe shortages
of its "Coppermine" Pentium III chip. Apparently, many Wintel
computer makers are seriously considering moving to AMD's Athlon processor
to meet demand; with Coppermine struggling to deliver significant numbers
of chips in the 700MHz range and the Athlon already at 850MHz, an upset
may be in store if these problems continue.
It's Not Over Yet
Posted 10 February 2000.
From CNET: "The European Union is investigating whether Windows
2000 will give Microsoft an unfair advantage over competitors, raising
new regulatory snags for the giant software maker in Europe."