Insider Dealings: All The Gossip That's Fit To Read

Xerox kicked off the Luncher's week by announcing it's taking on HP in printers. Xerox's CEO Rick Thoman, an Ex-IBM senior VP and CFO, gave a lacklustre speech to the press on Xerox's new direction.

Xerox kicked off the Luncher's week by announcing it's taking on HP in printers. Xerox's CEO Rick Thoman, an Ex-IBM senior VP and CFO, gave a lacklustre speech to the press on Xerox's new direction. The Luncher found out later it had been written by a PR man who hadn't even met Thomin. "I had a chat with IBM to get an idea of what he's like, and how he talks," he told the Luncher over a Budweiser. Apparently Thomin doesn't have a sense of humour. The Luncher thought back to the speech and smirked. "I think you got the tone just about right," he said.

Crashing the VNU black tie Computing Awards at London's Grosvenor Hotel, the Luncher fed heartily on the rival publishing house's food and champagne. This is the life, he told guest of honour Mark Lamarr, as Microsoft, Lotus and Oracle luminaries swanned past.

At the meal, dealers and VARs were having a field day and the rumour mill was doing overtime. Panasonic's been having trouble with Logitech -- stuff just keeps disappearing en route and the whole thing's a mystery, whispered one source. AST's finding it impossible to get hold of P200MHz chips, said another. Big deal, said the Luncher, downing a Kir Royal.

Siemens Nixdorf launched its Net PC, one hack told the Luncher over a beer in the bowels of a Soho snug. Only thing is, the president doesn't sound too convinced of the Net PC's future. Looks like the IBM Net PC fiasco all over again, he mused. Talking of Germans, Fin Fin's the number one software package in Germany, learned the Luncher. Virtual pets

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