A virulent strain of Apple-tablet fever has the internet in its tight grip, with fanboys, skeptics and everyone in between – among those who care at all about shiny new gadgets - showing different signs. And if blogs like Gawker Media-owned Valleywag have their way, the fever will march rampantly toward an impending crescendo, which is expected to be the period intervening the unveiling and the launch of the tablet. Valleywag is offering a fortune to anyone willing to share “pictures or video or one hour of touching and licking with the Apple Tablet.” Valleywag has chosen to cap its generosity at a mere $100,000. This is what is being offered:
The Washington Post says it sought expert opinion on the legality of Valleywag's offer. Unfortunately, the lawyer they asked wasn't impressed because Apple could drag Gawker to court for “inducing breach of contract, since anyone who has their hands on the tablet is certainly under a nondisclosure agreement."
What if this is all an Apple-approved publicity stunt, one that is likely to benefit both the Cupertino-based company and Gawker? Stranger things have happened before! One thing is for sure, though,Valleywag's salivating offer will not please journalism purists, the kind allergic to checkbook journalism.
Can't get enough box art? Well then you're in luck. Polish website CentrumXP has posted what appear to be leaked images of the retail boxes for Microsoft's upcoming Office 2010 productivity suite, or at least four of the versions.
The site posted shots of Office 2010 Home and Student, Home and Business, Professional, and Professional Academic. Standing out among the four versions is Office Professional Academic 2010, which is an edition no one seems to have known was in the works. In July of this year, Microsoft announced the other three versions above, plus Standard and Professional Plus (both of which will only be available via volume licensing).
So are these leaked shots the real deal? We don't know, but since Standard and Professional Plus will come via volume licensing, it would explain why those box shots weren't shown. And CentrumXP is also the same sight that leaked photos of Windows 7 retail boxes, half of which turned out to be legit.
What's the verdict, real or fake? Hit the jump and tell us!
The paper, which is titled "Government ICT Strategy: New world, new challenges, new opportunities," notes that many new technologies are poised to become mainstream by 2015, but that the above three stand out from them all. It says that Web 2.0 will provide the foundation to improve public sector interaction between citizens and businesses, while cloud computing will lead to different business models for the use and reuse of applications. Service oriented architecture, it says, will enable the delivery of the G Cloud and ultimately lead to an online store of government apps.
Other technologies discussed in the leaked document include the potential of semantic advancements, which separate data and content files from application code and meanings, location aware services, human-computer interaction which removes the need for a keyboard, and technologies to improve energy efficiency.
While the Cabinet Office doesn't comment on leaked documents, a spokesman did say that the paper is aimed at steering the government's approach to IT over the next five years, and that a it hopes to publish a final draft in time for Christmas.
Apple Insider has also found its anonymous knight in stealthy armor. It identified its source as a Microsoft/Danger insider. For those of you who don’t know, Danger is the company that developed the T-Mobile Sidekick before being bought by Microsoft for $500 million in 2008. Danger is rumored to have been converted into “Pink”.
The insider source echoed the claims made by MobileCrunch’s source. But then the anonymous-source ego came into the picture and he made a desperate attempt to prove his superioriy as the more conscientious anonymous source of the two. He believes that the person who originally spilled the beans is clearly a “disgruntled former or current employee.”
“I have my share of disgruntlement about the situation, but it never occurred to me to do something like that. This is actually the worst possible timing for Microsoft for this information to come out (on the heels of the awful reviews of WM 6.5), and I suspect that it has already caused irreparable damage to their relationships with a number of key partners, to which I say, 'Bravo, leaker, well played.' Now allow me to twist the knife...,” he said. He is quite certain that Microsoft had intentionally leaked photos of “Pure” and “Turtle” – the two Pink phones.
But the move seems to have backfired as the tepid response to the leaks seems to have given Microsoft cold feet. I hope you are in the vicinity of a few grains of salt.
Another video of Microsoft’s Courier booklet made its way onto Gizmodo today, a week after the same site had leaked the first video of this exciting multi-touch device. The second video is meatier and more informative compared to the first one. Apparently, the device is centered on the “infinite journal,” which can be uploaded on the internet and freely shared with friends.
A journal, once it is published online, can be downloaded in three different formats - a Courier file, Powerpoint or PDF, making it possible for even non-Courier users to access it. The “infinite journal” can seamlessly shift between being an insipid digital notepad to an artist’s canvas. It also features a library that catalogues subscriptions, notebooks and apps.
Two videos of the device have now been leaked but there is not even a single frame grab of Courier’s media capabilities. ZDNet’s Mary Jo Foley claims to have learnt from one of her sources that the Courier is based on Windows 7, although it is not possible to install Windows 7 apps. This is because Microsoft only wants it to run applications that are “tailored to a tablet form factor.”
In the wake of a leaked master OEM key from Lenovo, Microsoft is hoping to prevent a piracy free-for-all of their soon to be released OS.
The master key that was leaked has since been blacklisted and replaced, and Microsoft is reportedly working very close with Lenovo to insure that there won’t be any activation issues. “We've worked with that manufacturer so that customers who purchase genuine copies of Windows 7 from this manufacturer will experience no issues validating their copy of Windows 7,” said Alex Kochis, Director of Genuine Windows at Microsoft. “At the same time we will seek to alert customers who are using the leaked key that they are running a non-genuine copy of Windows. It's important to note that no PCs will be sold that will use this key.”
Now that the can of worms has been contained, there’s little worry from Microsoft that piracy will be an issue due to this key. But, they’re undoubtedly very unhappy about the leak up in Redmond.
Along with the latest build of Windows 7 (build 7600), it would appear that the Technical Preview of Office 2010 has made its way to the public realm of the Internet as well.
Office 2010 is reported to come in 32 and 64-bit flavors (possibly with both on one DVD). Both of these can be found online, so you can snag the version that best suits your needs. The leaked version of Office 2010 comes with Access 2010, Excel 2010, InfoPath 2010, OneNote 2010, Outlook 2010, PowerPoint 2010, Project 2010, Publisher 2010, SharePoint Designer 2010, SharePoint Workspace 2010, Visio 2010, and Word 2010.
Admittedly, the version of Office 2010 is a leak, so you’ll have to find a download all on your own. After all, we can’t in all good consciousness condone such activity.
Thanks to some careless online retailers, potential price leaks on Windows 7’s Family Pack and Upgrade packages have been uncovered.
Product listings over at Expercom have listed “WINDOWS 7 FAMILY PACK/ HOME PREMIUM UPGRADE (GFC-00236)” with a price of $136.95, but since this story first aired out, the page has since been taken down. Another online reseller, University IT Computer Sales, had the same product for $144.95.
Still, we must bear in mind that until the fat lady (read: Microsoft) sings, none of this can be heralded as true. So, before you start setting your pennies aside, remember that it’s best to wait and see.
Lady Shelley Sawers probably forgot that though posting family photographs on Facebook is a fundamental right of every free human being, it should be exercised in moderation when those photographs can betray certain vital details about your country’s top spy – the location of his London flat, personal details of his children and that he is a beach bum with trunks that this writer can neither exalt nor properly deride. The pictures have now been removed from Facebook.
The British government has a decent sense of humor and has downplayed the entire incident, although the pesky British tabloids certainly think it is serious stuff. “It is not a state secret that he wears Speedo swimming trunks,” British Foreign Secretary David Miliband quipped in a TV interview.
Miliband also liked the entire idea of having Sir Sawyer's photographs on Facebook as it paints a more human picture of the soon-to-be MI6 chief. Facebook is certainly making counterespionage very easy.
Build 7232 of Windows 7 was recently leaked onto the Internet, and many believe that this is one of the last builds before Microsoft gets ready to give the operating system Release To Manufacturing status.
The new build features plenty of improvements since the last, most notably in the realm of driver support and application compatibility. More importantly though, Microsoft has included a brand new wallpaper which takes the place of the betta fish, and shows off a stylized new Windows logo.
The new build is primarily available through torrents, and there’s no official word as to when Microsoft plans to release it to the public.
UPDATE: After only a few hours, it looks like 7260 is the latest build to make its way to the public via a leak, this time thanks to Russian site Wzor. Still though, the new background screen remains. By bye betta.