We cubicle warriors have it pretty easy – spending all day surfing the internet and filing TPS reports is easy on our puny man-child bodies. But lurking workplace hazards still threaten our nerdy well being. At least, that’s how MacLife sees it. Our sister publication calls out 10 startling office space threats and prescribes safety tips to avoid an encounter with the Aflac insurance duck. From poking your eyes out with lasers to blanketing your keyboard with delicious Cheeto dust, MacLife’s fear-mongering feature is a worthwhile read for any student of geeky office culture. With so much danger ready to strike any moment, we nerds might even need our own workplace safety video (NSFW).
As it turns out, the rumors were true; Microsoft does plan on releasing its Office 2010 software suite in both 32-bit and 64-bit flavors, says ArsTechnica, who received confirmation from a Microsoft spokesperson via an email exchange.
"Yes, Office will have two separate 32-bit and 64-bit versions," the spokesperson wrote. "Office 2010 will be the first to do this."
While the benefits of running Office natively in a 64-bit environment might not be particularly exciting, making the popular software suite available as such could help expedite 64-bit adoption among other vendors. Love it or hate it, this also means a certain debt of gratitude is owed to Vista, the first mainstream Windows OS to really push 64-bit onto the masses.
Appropriately enough, look for Office 2010 to be released sometime next year.
The summer looks bright for Acer, who has announced a pair of new notebooks, one of which it plans to release in June. Sitting at opposite ends of the spectrum, the thin and light Aspire 3935 will ship as a 13.3-inch notebook, with the 8935G checking in at a much larger 18.4 inches.
Packed into the smaller 3935 will be Intel's Core 2 Duo T7350 (2GHz, 3MB L2 cache, 1066MHz frontside bus) processor on the chip maker's GM45 chipset, 3GB of DDR2-1066 RAM, integrated 4500MHD graphics, a 250GB SATA hard drive, 8X DVD burner, Wi-Fi, touch sensitive hotkeys, and various other goodies adding up to a 4.18-pound laptop.
Moving up to the 8935G adds a larger display, one of several Intel Core 2 Duo processors, discrete ATI Mobility Radeon HD 4670 graphics, a combo 4X Blu-ray drive and DVD burner, four USB 2.0 ports, up to 4GB of DDR3 memory, and up to 1TB of hard drive space. The added horsepower and screen real estate means the 8935 will weight more than twice as much as the 3935, checking in at 10.1 pounds. Interestingly, neither laptop comes with an SSD option.
Acer says the Aspire 3935 is available now at major retailers nationwide starting at $900. The Aspire 8935G will be available stateside in June with pricing and further specifications still to be determined.
If you're to take Intel at its word (and earnings report), then forget any talk of the PC industry continuing to decline. According to CEO Paul Otellini, the immediate future looks bright, especially for the No. 1 chip maker.
"We believe PC sales bottomed out during the first quarter and that the industry is returning to normal seasonal patterns," Otellini said in a statement. "Intel has adapted well to the current economic environment and we're benefiting from disciplined execution and agility. We're delivering a product portfolio that meets the needs of the changing market, spanning affordable computing to high-performance, energy-efficient computing."
Backing up his claims, Intel reported a first quarter profit of $647 million, or 11 cents per share, on revenue of $7.1 billion. Wall Street was expecting earnings of 2 cents on revenue of $6.98 billion.
But does Intel's success translate to a recovery in the PC market as a whole? While Intel has been riding high on sales of its Atom processors and managed to beat expectations for Q1, the company wasn't as forthcoming when it came to forecasting Q2.
Don't worry if you weren't voted Mr. or Ms. Popular in your high school yearbook, you're making up for it now whether you realize it or not. You see, there exists a vast underground economy where several individuals are interested in learning everything there is to know about you, such as what credit cards you carry around, your full name, address, and date of birth, and any other personal information specific to you.
The problem is (well, one of many) you're not alone. According to the annual Symantec Internet Security Threat Report (PDF), the market for stolen personal information has ballooned so much in the past year that a price war has erupted. Full personal identities, the report claims, can be had for "less than a can of cola" (or a can of 'pop' if you live in the Midwest or parts of the South).
"This recession-proof underground economy is reaching such a level of growth and maturity that there are signs of a price war developing, as online criminals find it increasingly easy to steal private details, and barter to sell them for bargain prices," said Guy Bunker of Symantec.
The report found that credit card information remains the most prominent underground commodity fetching anywhere from $0.06 to $30. Bank account credentials run considerably higher, up to $1,000, and was the second most stolen data in 2008.
File this away as a rumor until more details emerge, but for the time being, word on the web is that Microsoft is shopping for an ad agency to help launch and promote Zune for mobile phones. Codenamed 'Pink,' the project has made the rounds on the web before and refers to Zune software on mobile phones, which is somewhat less exciting than a Zunephone rumor coming true.
But is this all Microsoft has planned for Zune? As news site Engadget points out, "you don't audition three huge ad agencies just to launch a Zune app on busted ol' WinMo, so there could be something big cooking." Engadget surmises that we could end up seeing a consumer-oriented edition of Windows Mobile that integrates Zune services not just on the Zune HD, but on several third-party phones as well.
Any guesses as to what Microsoft is planning? Hit the jump and share post your predictions.
If you've been eyeing the iPhone ever since it came out but have been reluctant to switch from your cellular service provider to AT&T, then you may want to rethink that approach. That's because AT&T, who struck gold when it inked a deal with Apple to be the exclusive iPhone carrier, is in discussions to extend its contract until 2011, according to a report in The Wall Street Journal.
When asked to comment on the talks, an Apple spokeswoman offered little other information, saying only "We have a great relationship with AT&T."
And vice versa. According to AT&T, it has added 4.3 million iPhone subscribers in the second half of 2008, many of which -- about 40 percent -- were new to AT&T. But if AT&T is going to secure exclusivity rights to the iPhone for at least a year after its initial deal comes to an end, it's going to have to make sense for Apple as well, who will face increased pressure from Google's Android platform as the open-source OS starts to spread beyond T-Mobile's G1. And with Android 1.5 adding a bevy of new features, things could get awfully interesting in round 2.
Yesterday, we reported that, along with losing Activision Blizzard, the PC Gaming Alliance accepted a shifty-eyed new figure into its ranks: Sony DADC. Fortunately, however, the SecuROM parent company doesn’t plan on working any shady deals behind the curtain, according to PCGA president Randy Stude. In fact, like Arnold in Terminator 2, Sony DADC is switching sides to help PC gamers topple a much bigger baddy -- in this case, piracy.
Speaking with BigDownload, Stude explained that Sony DADC decided to join the PCGA in order to assist the organization’s piracy-perforating subcommittee. According to Stude, keeping its alleged enemy roughly as close as its friends will provide the PCGA with ideas for its PC game piracy report, which is coming sometime before the year’s out.
Meanwhile, on the other side of the revolving door, Stude confirmed that PC manufacturer Acer left the building along with Activision Blizzard, for essentially the same monetarily minded reasons. Apparently, when it comes down to saving a few bucks or performing a philanthropic act – contrary to what Fable II and BioShock had us believing – the yellow brick road is the path of least resistance.
But hey, at least GameStop… exists. It recently joined the PCGA as a penny-pinching “Contributor,” which means that the notoriously PC-unfriendly game store is a member, but for less cash. Better than nothing, we guess.
Expect more PCGA-related announcements before this June’s E3 gaming expo.
Most enterprises have resolved to skip Windows Vista altogether. With Vista on its way out, Microsoft would be hoping for enterprises to upgrade to Windows 7 at the first given opportunity. However, Microsoft will have to wait as that is exactly what most enterprises plan on doing. A large majority of enterprises have decided against upgrading next year, according to a survey conducted by market research firm Dimensional Research.
Dimensional Research took the opinion of 1,100 IT professionals. More than 83 percent of those surveyed have no plans of upgrading next year. The ongoing recession and doubts over software compatibility are the main reasons why most businesses want to play the wait-and-watch game.
After Yahoo turned down Microsoft’s proposal to roll in the hay and have an offspring that could take on Google’s might in the online search market, it appeared the two would maintain a distance from each other. However, a luncheon meeting between Ballmer and Yahoo Chairman Roy Bostock earlier this year again revived hopes of a deal.
The New York Times reports that the two companies have returned to the negotiation table, though for a slightly different purpose. A source close to the discussions told the NYT that the two companies are discussing an advertising deal. The source revealed that Microsoft could assume control of Yahoo’s search ads and leave Yahoo in control of display ads under one arrangement being deliberated. Steve Ballmer is also said to have met with Yahoo CEO Carol Bartz last week. There is no official word on the matter as yet.