Dear Windows-Help.NET Subscriber,
Last week I wrote about Microsoft's new initiative, changing it's strategy and transferring it's products to a .NET future.
In Microsoft's words this is Innovation.... well, hardly so I dare say. Microsoft is just responding to trends already underway in the marketplace. For Microsoft this is a huge shift in direction, as it always downplayed the competition it faced in this area.
"By accelerating the available inventory of web services, Microsoft.NET fuels our vision of the Internet Economy as a web of interconnected businesses, or business webs," said Frank Moss, co-chairman and co-founder of Bowstreet, a leading provider of XML infrastructure for business-to-business (B2B) web marketplaces. "As customers and developers create web services, Bowstreet can help businesses rapidly find, combine, mass-customize and automate web services to build business webs that fluidly and easily connect customers, suppliers and partners."
Other companies with similar services include BrightLane.com, VistaSource Inc and others.
Most industry officials think that Microsoft is going to have a tough time on delivering on it's promises first because they are late to the game and second because of the lack of cross-platform interoperability of it's systems, which will require a lot of adaption.
The idea behind the .NET services (and similar offerings from other companies) is that in a few years, a majority of the computing public will be wired to the Internet via a high speed connection. This will allow you to get your daily work and play done by subscribing to "services". Instead of buying a copy of Microsoft Office, you will pay a low monthly fee, and use Office.NET. Part of the information will be cached locally (on your hard drive), and the rest will be "out there", on various servers.
These services will also have the ability to connect various devices, such as letting your PocketPC communicate with the airlines central server, so you can book a flight while you are in the cab to the airport. Or let you send a voice message to your friends Palm, telling him to meet for dinner an hour later.
See also Subscribing to your software: The future of software distribution
The World's Smallest Hard Disk Drive
1-Gigabyte IBM Microdrive Opens New Levels of Functionality For Next-Generation Pervasive Computing Devices.
Packing one gigabyte (GB) of data storage capacity on to a disk the size of an American quarter, IBM's newest Microdrive can hold up to 1,000 high-resolution photographs, a thousand 200-page novels or nearly 18 hours of high-quality digital audio music.
The 1 GB Microdrive brings affordable high-capacity, high-performance data storage to a wide variety of handheld electronic products -- including digital cameras, handheld PCs, personal digital assistants (PDAs), portable Internet music players and video cameras. It can also serve as a data-exchange accessory to notebook computers, desktop computers and printers. Future applications may include wearable computers, electronic books, global positioning system (GPS) receivers, smart phones and electronic wallets.
Underscoring the dramatic pace of development in the storage industry, IBM introduced the world's first gigabyte-capacity disk drive, the 3380, in 1980. It was the size of a refrigerator, weighed 550 pounds (about 250 kg) and cost $40,000. The Microdrive announced today is smaller than a matchbook, weighs less than an ounce and will be available for less than $500.
S P O N S O R
"I thought I'd tip you off to a piece of software that turns your RealAudio player into a real sound system. I'm sitting here clicking the on/off button to hear the difference between the signal and the iQ enhanced version and the difference is not like night and day -- it's like night and several days." -- R. Curtis, USA