Laser Blog

Articles tagged "news"

50 Word Processor Review

Friday 9th February, 2007

The review itself is quite interesting. We all use word processors at some time or another. But it was these two quotes which caught my eye: is the first office suite (and word processor) to use the new OASIS OpenDocument Format, the future-proof ISO certified international standard for office documents (ISO/IEC 26300:2006).
As of 2006, ODF is the ISO certified international standard for office documents, not OXML, nor .doc. For any other vendor, it's easier to write a conversion filter for ODF than will ever be for OXML, among other reasons for the sheer sake of supporting Microsoft's backward compatibility with its previous proprietary formats over the past 18 years. Corel has announced it will support both ODF and OXML in the next WordPerfect version.

(Emphasis added.)

OXML (Open XML) is Microsoft's answer to ODF (OpenDocument Format), although the name is somewhat misleading in that it's not really open. When concerns were raised about this, Microsoft provided a covenant not to sue, an offer which was generally rejected. Underhand stuff; try and sneak it in, then promise "not to sue", a promise which turns out to be worthless anyway.


49 The BBC plans to lock online TV viewers into Microsoft products

Wednesday 7th February, 2007

This is interesting. The BBC has announced that its new on-demand services will be limited to Microsoft Windows.

A report from the BBC Trust said that services will be unavailable to consumers who do not use Microsoft software or have an up-to-date version of Windows.

(Emphasis added.)

So, will BBC services eventually be limited to users of Microsoft Vista only?


48 Gates “dares anybody” to exploit Vista

Wednesday 7th February, 2007

No OS is perfect, but Vista seems to have had it's fair share of exploits for such an unpopular OS.
Rob. April 2015.

Poor Bill. Is he feeling a little stressed, to be making such outrageous statements?

Nowadays, security guys break the Mac every single day. Every single day, they come out with a total exploit, your machine can be taken over totally. I dare anybody to do that once a month on the Windows machine.

He's a clever guy. What is his game?


47 Apache on Linux vs IIS on Windows

Monday 5th February, 2007

A graphic illustration of why Windows is less secure than Linux. You know that old saying: "A picture is worth a thousand words"? Well here are two pictures! Both images are a complete map of the system calls that occur when a web server serves up a single page of html with a single picture.

This first image shows the system calls that occur on a Linux server running Apache.

The system calls that occur on a Linux server running Apache


And this second image shows the system calls that occur on a Windows server running IIS.

The system calls that occur on a Windows server running IIS


It's kind of self-explanatory, but there is a little more detail (including larger pictures) on the originating site.


45 Vista "an unprecedented loss of consumer control over their own PCs"

Thursday 1st February, 2007

The BBC has finally published an article on some of the negative aspects of using Vista. I imagine their previously one-sided reporting annoyed so many people that they were forced to publish the other viewpoint.

The article's author, Michael Geist, who holds the Canada Research Chair in Internet and E-commerce Law at the University of Ottawa, Faculty of Law, identifies some worrying issues:

Vista's legal fine print includes extensive provisions granting Microsoft the right to regularly check the legitimacy of the software and holds the prospect of deleting certain programs without the user's knowledge.

Also, note that earlier I said "using Vista", not "owning Vista"; you don't own it, you're just paying for the right to use it, within certain constraints which Microsoft have decided to apply. When you download a free copy of Linux, it belongs to you.

For greater certainty, the terms and conditions remove any doubt about who is in control by providing that "this agreement only gives you some rights to use the software. Microsoft reserves all other rights".

For those users frustrated by the software's limitations, Microsoft cautions that "you may not work around any technical limitations in the software".

Some people actually pay money for this sort of abuse!