Tech News Trio: Terms of Service II (the sequel), Firefox 3b5, and SP3 Signs of Spring


You Complained, Adobe Heard You, Read All About It!

After spoiling the rollout of Photoshop Express with a high-handed terms of service agreement, Adobe has announced a revised terms of service document, available here . The red-letter text indicates the significant changes from the "old" version . The new version makes it clear that Adobe's not trying to create a stock photo house from user submissions but plans to make money from the site the old-fashioned way: with advertising . Note to the paranoid: the new wording doesn't become effective until April 10th (next Thursday).

Firefox Bakes Another Beta of Version 3 - Yummy!

With Beta 4 barely cool from the oven, Mozilla rolled out Beta 5 of the forthcoming Firefox version 3 browser this week. Mozilla's codemonkeys have been a busy bunch the last two weeks, as Beta 5 contains over 750 improvements in features and performance from Beta 4, including (and I quote):

One-click site info: Click the site favicon in the location bar to see who owns the site and to check if your connection is protected from eavesdropping. Identity verification is prominently displayed and easier to understand. When a site uses Extended Validation (EV) SSL certificates, the site favicon button will turn green and show the name of the company you're connected to.

New Download Manager: the revised download manager makes it much easier to locate downloaded files, and you can see and search on the name of the website where a file came from. Your active downloads and time remaining are always shown in the status bar as your files download.

Full page zoom: from the View menu and via keyboard shortcuts, the new zooming feature lets you zoom in and out of entire pages, scaling the layout, text and images, or optionally only the text size. Your settings will be remembered whenever you return to the site.

Web-based protocol handlers: web applications, such as your favorite webmail provider, can now be used instead of desktop applications for handling mailto: links from other sites. Similar support is available for other protocols (Web applications will have to first enable this by registering as handlers with Firefox).

Reliability: A user's bookmarks, history, cookies, and preferences are now stored in a transactionally secure database format which will prevent data loss even if their system crashes.

See a more complete list of improvements and much more information in the release notes .

One More Sign of Spring SP3

Although Microsoft remains officially tight-lipped about the exact release date of the long-awaited (and long-delayed) Service Pack 3 for Windows XP, another sign of its coming release emerged on the Microsoft web site this week: the Windows XP Service Pack 3 Overview . It's available in your choice of Adobe PDF or Microsoft XPS formats.

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