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Microsoft

HTML5 Week in Review

June 16, 2011

Big Facebook, Financial Times and Acrobat HTML5 News

Facebook declares war on Apple: Its only Thursday and this week has been a huge one so far with regards to HTML5 – with Facebook looking like it will have a new HTML5 app which bypasses the Apple App Store. Is it in fact “declaring war?” I am not sure but after the recent news from Microsoft relating to HTML5 – the trend in the market is clear.

HTML5 Video on Set Top Boxes: Then there is the news that ActiveVideo’s new CloudTV platform will have HTML5 support as well. How soon till we can watch all TV on any browser which supports the newest HTML variant?

Really Popular Financial Times: I recently covered the new HTML5 app from the Financial Times which I love. Now it turns out the app has had 100,000 downloads in week!





Microsoft Embraces HTML5 and Developers Are Scared

June 14, 2011

Recently Microsoft came out with the news that new Windows 8 immersive applications will be coded with HTML5 and JavaScript and this has sent a shock-wave through the company's developer community as the various programming languages they are used to seem to have been obsoleted overnight.

ZDnet's Mary Jo Foley said she has it on good authority that Silverlight will continue to be supported as well but the forums are awash in fear, uncertainty and doubt.

There are two ways of looking at this news - Microsoft hasn't had a chance to explain in full its future path for developers and in-time coders will learn that they aren't coding dinosaurs as some bridge technologies will ensure their skill-set is still useful.



Personally I believe that Microsoft isn't going to abandon .NET, WPF and other development platforms. But this doesn't mean this news isn't huge.

What Microsoft is telling developers is HTML5 and JavaScript are the future of web programming. This isn't exactly news to many of us but coming from Microsoft at this early a stage, the news is frankly surprising.

But then again when you realize just how much catching up the company has to do in the tablet and smartphone space, the HTML5 move is the only one which makes sense.

And herein lies the opportunity - HTML5 runs everywhere and as we saw from the recent Financial Times app, it has virtually no limitations compared to native code and as a bonus requires no app store gatekeeper to approve it.

For programmers everywhere - if you aren't learning HTML5 - you may come to work one day and realize you are a triceratops (hat tip to TMC president Dave Rodriguez whose line I just stole.)

TMC is cosponsoring an HTML5 event called DevCon5 in Manhattan, July 27-28, 2011 and the show is a must-attend for developers, designers, media companies and executives who don't want to be left in the dust.



















8x8 Speaks Out About Skype Deal (Video)

June 13, 2011

HP Itanium Feud with Oracle Hurts Customers Most

June 9, 2011

Oracle is Big Enough to Strike Fear and Low Key Enough to Escape Massive Media Scrutiny

Oracle is fiercely competitive - in and out of the water

The rivalry between HP and Oracle is definitely heating up and the endgame probably isn’t good for HP. For more than a decade an acquisition spree at Oracle has allowed it to become a software behemoth depended on by IT departments worldwide.

Microsoft Taking Tablet Control

June 2, 2011

Microsoft is taking control of the companies allowed to sell its tablets and limiting the number according to the Wall Street Journal. There are two good reasons for Microsoft to change its traditional open system where everyone had a shot at becoming a hardware partner.

  1. It is imperative Microsoft get the tablet roll out right and they need to get involved early to ensure the partners with the best products get to market quickly with limited competition to ensure success.
  2. Microsoft is losing to Apple because in part its user interfaces and product designs are vastly inferior. I've mentioned the difference between using a clunky Dell laptop Vs. an iPad before. They need to take control of this problem and one hopes they will police more tightly the final tablet user experience with attention to detail commensurate with that of the iPad and its magnetic cover.


An Honest Critique of Microsoft and Steve Ballmer

May 26, 2011

For the last five years there have been calls for Steve Ballmer to step down from Microsoft and I have refrained from comment until today because a confluence of news and events has made commentary necessary. Specifically, David Einhorn, an influential hedge fund manager – whose firm Greenlight Capital owns almost 9M shares of Microsoft, said (video) Ballmer is stuck in the past and is ruining Microsoft’s stock.

Technologist Vs. Businessperson: One compliant about Steve Ballmer is that he is more a businessperson than a technologist and as a result, new and innovative products have been developed much more slowly. This point is very tough to argue with and more importantly, what is Ballmer’s vision for Microsoft?

Skype For Asterisk to Shut Down

May 25, 2011

One of the more exciting announcements in the open communications space was when Digium inked a deal with Skype to allow the most popular open source communications server to work natively with the most popular Internet telephony software.

But yesterday Digium put out a note telling users that Skype for Asterisk will no longer be available after July 26th, 2011. Current users should be able to use it for a period of two years after that date.

The question worth asking is whether this announcement marks the end of Skype support for non-Microsoft platforms. As Erik Lagerway asks - will Skype Connect for various PBX vendors be next?

In the past I've have heard there were scaling issues with Skype for Asterisk so this move could be a result pruning products which didn't meet certain standards or requirements.

Obviously we will know more as time goes on but this move likely won't be welcomed by the legions of open-source fanboys out there. And Microsoft needs to be careful to not alienate the influencers in the market if it doesn't want to intentionally reduce the value of an acquisition which many say cost too much.

Update May 26, 2011

Skype sent me their official comment regarding Skype for Asterisk from Jennifer Caukin, spokeswoman for Skype.













Flash Support May Be Apple's Only Weak Spot

May 23, 2011

I’ve got two kids and for privacy reasons we will call them X, age seven and Y, age six. For their last birthday X received a netbook and I noticed over the last eight months or so – it was rarely used while an iPod, a Nintendo DSi and my iPad were. So partly because I was sick of lending my iPad to the kids constantly and because I saw just how much use iOS devices were getting in my house – I lobbied the grandparents to not get another netbook but instead get the youngest child “Y” an iPad.

Y didn’t want an iPad – only because you couldn’t play some Flash-based game on it.

VocalTec adds magicJack to Name

May 22, 2011

In Life and Internet Telephony, Timing is Everything

VocalTec will now become magicJack VocalTec Ltd. – a nod to the fact that most Americans see more magicJack ads than they do even McDonalds and name recognition for VocalTec is virtually zero – except for the handful of us in the VoIP space in the nineties.

The personal irony for me is that Microsoft NetMeeting was an Internet telephony software package which was given away for free by Redmond shortly after VocalTec announced a paid product. As a result, VocalTec had to refocus completely on hardware gateways and Microsoft became the leader in VoIP.

Avaya SMB Event Features Cake Boss

May 17, 2011

Avaya Press and Analyst SMB Live Blog.



At an Avaya Event here in New York City, the company is set to detail its plans to migrate Nortel users to Avaya's IP Office 7.0. According to Isabelle Guis (pictured) General Manager of of the SME Communications Business Unit, the company now has 30 million users - 14M of those came from Nortel and there are 7 million total IP Office users - with 200k systems being sold last quarter.


Here are some shots of the event so far.




10:00 am EST Kick Off

Announcer addresses audience from TV via video Small business make is vital to Avaya.

Dr. Alan Baratz
takes the stage. He transitions to a video of happy customers "Thinking Big."



IP Office was designed for small to medium businesses and can scale to 1,000 users. 60% YoY growth - almost 150% QoQ growth in sub-20 end of market.


















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