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Clash of the Titans 21 June 2001 Edition
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Million $ Ideas
At last, the contents of Aardvark's "million-dollar ideas" notebook are revealed for all to see!
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Get ready to watch a very interesting clash between Microsoft and RealNetworks as each strives to become THE company which sets the standards for delivering digital media to your home.

Microsoft has made its intentions very clear but seems to have found its open lust for "global domination" TM has turned off the major recording companies -- who have flocked instead to embrace arch-rival, RealNetworks.

7amNews Sci/Tech


Why aren't the recording companies knocking each other over to sign up with Microsoft?

After all, MS has the money, it has both the digital rights management and the streaming technology pretty well sorted, and it has some really solid branding.

Unfortunately -- it also has a reputation.

It seems that Microsoft's dalek-like "seek, destroy, exterminate" attitude to competitors has well and truly backfired -- right at the moment the company really needs to sign up some big deals.

Billy-boy isn't stupid, one of the reasons he has invested so much money into ventures like Slate and MSNBC is because he knows that the software market is already near saturation level.

An awareness that most homes and businesses now already have an MS Windows-equipped PC and Microsoft Office has led to the software giant re-jigging its licensing agreements so as to squeeze more money out of the upgrade cycle and clamp down even tighter on piracy.

But where do you go when everyone's already bought what you've got to sell?

Simple -- you go into an area of the market where there's always a new product and an eager customer: ENTERTAINMENT.

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It's no surprise therefore to see such huge amounts of money being thrown behind the development and marketing of the XBox games console. Microsoft knows that once you've got an XBox in your house, you'll need a constant diet of new games to keep the kids (and yourself) amused.

But the biggest earner has to be from music and film -- and that's why Microsoft is locked in a battle with RealNetworks, who have gained the early high-ground.

Microsoft knows that if it is going to continue to satisfy shareholders' constant demand for growth and profit, it needs to be able to "clip the ticket" every time you or I buy a recording, movie or other digitally recorded or delivered content.

So how will Microsoft win-over the recording companies and convince them that it's safe to swim with a shark?

How can the the recording industry trust that Microsoft isn't waiting to achieve dominance of the digital media distribution market then squeeze the stuffing out of them?

This is a good question, and I suspect that if we just sit back and watch, we'll find out.

As always, your comments are welcomed.

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Security Alerts
Microsoft Admits Another 'Serious Vunerability' In IIS 7amNews - 19/06/2001)

Trojan horse targets Word users (CNet - 14/06/2001t)

Microsoft Patches Yet Another IIS Security Hole (NewsBytes - 15/05/2001)

Unchecked Buffer in ISAPI Extension Could Enable Compromise of IIS 5.0 Server (Microsoft - 01/05/2001)

Virus Alerts
Worm: New 'Homepage' virus rated X (ZDNet - 10/05/2001)

New virus hits both Windows and Linux (Fairfax - 28/03/2001)

SANS Detects Lion Worm (TechWeb - 23/03/2001)

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