March 2008 Archives

Bill Gates praises Macintosh

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The questions IBM wouldn't answer

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You can read the story about IBM being sued for £3 million for allegedly selling other people’s patented software here.

What’s sad about this case is that IBM has refused to offer any guidance to current users of the software in question – Websphere and Net Commerce – about what they can do to check they are on the right side of the law – which is exactly what brought about the case in the first place!

But don’t think the IBM PR machine has forgotten about you the customer, oh no.
At just 17.39 today I received an email that said: “IBM today introduced VBrick VideoPlug-in for Lotus Sametime.”

Brilliant.

So when certain users moan, as many have at my colleague Cliff Saran on his blog, just remember who’s asking the questions for your benefit.

Counterfeit Cisco gear – a problem of its own making?

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My colleague Cliff Saran has written a story about counterfeit Cisco gear being seized.

He points out the security issues with using counterfeit Cisco equipment, and gives a guide on how to spot fake Cisco gear, but one thing that seems to have slipped under the radar is the total value of counterfeit goods that have been seized: £38 million.

Clearly there is demand for cheap Cisco gear on the part of users, but is this a problem of Cisco’s own making?

As one network manager points out: “There are a lot of ways to spot fake Cisco, with a too good to be true low price being the very first one.”

But since when did a low price suddenly become a privilege for buyers of network equipment?

I’ve been told by industry insiders that Cisco competes very aggressively on price – sometimes offering discounts of up to 70% when it really wants to win your business. So, why doesn’t it offer low prices all the time?

If people felt they could afford prices from Cisco in the first place, they wouldn’t be seeking out cheap deals and the black market wouldn’t have as much clout.