You can tell you are into what us journalists refer to as the silly season when The Economist runs an item about a camcorder that can see through clothing and the FT has an item about how rubbish the Haagen Dazs Web site is. Not exactly the stuff of big business and high finance. Fortunately Business Week sticks to the knitting with an excellent report on Microsoft's defence in the DoJ case, and the Wall Street Journal, sensible as ever, reports how it is the colour of your badge that says the most about you on at Microsoft's Seattle campus-style HQ.
Microsoft move to get DoJ case thrown out of court - Business Week
As Microsoft lawyers move to get the whole DoJ case thrown out of court, the basis of their defence is now clear: they will say that they were working on integrating Web browsing with Windows long before Netscape was incorporated. Business Week quotes a memo from new President Steve Ballmer to his boss Bill Gates, dated December 7 1993 in which he says "I think we could really popularise (Windows 95...if we could say (it's) the greatest front end to the Internet."
Business Week, August 17, 1998.
At Microsoft it is the colour of your badge that matters most - Wall Street Journal
The Wall Street Journal reports on the contrast in wealth between permanent and contract employees at Microsoft. "Permanent workers at the software company sport blue badges; temporary workers orange"..."When it comes to options, the difference between blue and orange is an economic chasm separating Haves, like Bonnie Olivera, from Have-Nots, like Mark Witala." According to the journals Microsoft are touchy on the subject of having a two tier work force: "It's like saying we are hiring migrant farm workers and trying to keep them down."
Wall Street Journal, August 11, 1998.
Journalism will survive the Web - Evening Standard
As the standards of Web journalists are increasingly called into question, "mild mannered media commentator John Diamond" says old fashioned journalistic principles like checking facts and getting quotes will drive out the bad sites. "Market forces will apply: e-zines which don't do the job won't get read."
John Diamond, (London) Evening Standard, August 12, 1998.
The Handycam that is handy for looking at underwear - The Economist
The Economist reports on "Japanese electronics giant, Sony" stopping sales of its infrared Handycam, because it was found that the camera could be used to see through peoples' clothing if used during the day. "Sony has now modified the camera so that the infrared mode works only at night."
The Economist, August 15-21, 1998.
Haagen-Dazs Web site fails to impress FT - Financial Times
The FT's David Bowen loves the ice cream but hates the Web site. "Here we have a site that is more like candy floss than ice-cream: it looks substantial, it is quite pretty, but there is almost nothing to it."..."This site is a useful guide to wasting money on the web. Other brand-builders should examine it carefully and do otherwise."
Financial Times, August 14, 1998.
StrongARM prepares major announcements this fall - Business Week
Commenting on Intel's decision to ditch home grown plans in favour of the UK-designed SrongARM chip for devices requiring embedded processors, Business Week noted that big announcements about StrongARM are expected this Autumn. "With Intel's backing and new version of Microsoft's Windows CE software for the ARM due out this fall, it become a frontrunner in hand held devices"..."It also has new customers, including PC giant Hewlett-Packard, which plans to unveil a StrongARM-based mobile computer this fall, say insiders."
Business Week, August 17, 1998.