Thursday, October 30, 2008

Government considers nationalising Nominet?

In what has to be one of the more worrying tech stories this year, Peter Mandelson's Government department has apparently asked Nominet to "justify its independance from Whitehall". That has to be one of the more sinister threats an organization can be issued!

Good thing Mandelson himself is not sinister.

The really worrying thing is that Nominet has for years been providing an efficient, cheap and stable service keeping .uk domain names going - and the government? Well, they seem to be unable from being involved in technology issues without it either breaking, going over budget or the important bits being left on a train.

Or Jacqui Smith being put in charge of the UK's DNS. Gulp.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Windows 7 is called ... Windows 7

Good name! According to The Register the next version of Windows is going to go back to the numbering they abandoned after NT4, which given the fairly justifiable derision everyone had for Vista when its name was announced is probably a good thing. Let's face it, people hated it 18 months before they even saw it. Windows 7 harks back to a simpler time, when men were men and the Operating System did not come on the equivalent of 2083 floppy disks.

I understand Windows 7 will not ship with lots of the programs we have taken for granted like Windows Mail and Media Player (they should have done that a couple of versions ago and the EU would not have sued them for 500 million euros) - instead we will be expected to use everything online. Excuse me for being cynical, but this isn't just a very good anti-piracy measure, is it Microsoft?

Personally I am still waiting for Windows RG - the Really Good Edition. Demo available here:

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Symantec destroys another great company

I should probably not refer to Symantec as the "evil empire" as I bet they have great lawyers to stop that kind of nonsense. I should also probably not say how they appear to keep taking over companies that make great, or at least usable, software and replacing it with generic bloatware. Let's pause for a moment to remember Powerquest (Drive Image - sniff). And Veritas. I bet Altiris is not going to have a bright future.

Oh, and I don't know how hated the word "Norton" was before they started pumping out the current product line, but I don't know anyone who knows what they're doing and uses that pile of ... software.

Anyway, I digress. Symantec has just bought MessageLabs, a company who were rare in that they actually knew what they were doing. Their email scanning service was pricey, but damn it was good. I used them at Pegasus through 2006 and don't remember having to release any emails ever, and we simply got no spam. I assume this is going to be replaced by some horrendous 1gb per pc local install that blocks all email that doesn't come from Symantec marketing or have a virus . Anyway, another service I could not recommend anymore - thanks Symantec.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

New word - unadmin

Today someone asked me to unadmin a user. To him, his request was followed by a two second impassive look from myself followed by the words "Sure, that'll just take a moment - I'll do it now". Internally there was a more involved struggle as my brain pointed out two things:

1. This man has just used a word that does not exist.
2. You know exactly what it means.

So there you are, a new word for today - unadmin. To "unadmin" someone is to remove their administrative status.