Microsoft has lost its appeal to hide more internal emails that deride Vista and it's ability to run on current PC's from the prying eyes of the court. Microsoft claims the emails could "jeopardize Microsoft's goodwill" and "disrupt Microsoft's relationships with its business partners."
More than forcing Vista on said business parters has done already, that is.
Top 10 things overheard at the Microsoft retail store: • "Please check all torches and pitchforks at the door." • "You can browse, but you must use Internet Explorer." • "It does work. You just need the patch." • "We don't support that. Try the [partner name] store." • "Very funny. No, we don't sell copies of Monopoly." • "Please see the officer at the Authentication Bar." • "The next version of the Microsoft Store should have that." • "I'll give you an Xbox if you stop crying." • "What other choice do you have?" • "Beep. You seem to be shopping for an iPod. Can I help?"
We tend to live down to the standards that are given to us, and constantly portraying men as morons or overgrown children or both is no way to get us to buy something that will improve our lives. I know who I am, (and if I didn't, my wife would tell me who I am :) ), I don't need Toyota or Budweiser to tell me I'm actually a 14-year-old boy in a man's body.
In a radical departure from traditional book-publishing practices, News Corp.'s HarperCollins Publishers is launching a new business that won't accept returns from retailers. In addition, the new entity intends to pay little or nothing in the way of advances to its authors.
Instead, the unit, which hasn't yet been named, will share its profits with writers and focus much of its sales efforts on the Internet.
My question then is - what's the point of the publisher?
Well, there's editing (which one can get elsewhere) and the fancy publishing house imprimatur, maybe a little help with production and publicity (again available elsewhere - many authors pay for their own publicists anyway). It this really enough? The author can do much better on percentages, I am sure, by self-publishing. And that same author may know his or her way around the Internet better than the publisher, when it comes to publicity. So I am skeptical of this model. But I'm not surprised that it is happening - it is another symptom of the huge shakeout in the arts and letters instigated largely by the online world.