|Ken Novak's Weblog
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Wednesday, January 28, 2004
UNDP and Microsoft Announce Technology Partnership in Developing Nations: "The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and Microsoft Corp. today announced a technology partnership to create and implement information and communications technology projects that will help developing countries achieve the Millennium Development Goals. ..
The alliance will draw on the resources of Microsoft's Unlimited Potential program, the company's global initiative to deliver computer literacy and job skills training to underserved communities. .. In addition, Microsoft and UNDP have agreed to work together in support of UNDP's Southern Africa Capacity Initiative (SACI). In this sphere, Microsoft and UNDP will explore innovative opportunities to use technology to build capacity, facilitate e-government initiatives,and improve the delivery of basic services in countries most adversely affected by the HIV and AIDS pandemic. ..
Microsoft and the UNDP have already collaborated on a pilot project to provide technology access and skills training at 16 regional centers in Afghanistan, in the aftermath of the country's military and political upheaval. The training centers, located in Kabul and surrounding areas, will help build a skilled pool of IT professionals in a country where Internet skills and services technology had once been suppressed. It is projected that the centers will provide training to nearly 12,000 Afghan citizens annually. ..
Microsoft has committed $1 billion in cash, software, curriculum and technology assistance over the next five years to Unlimited Potential and other efforts to help reduce the global digital divide. Since May 2003, the company has made grants of cash and software totaling nearly $50 million to more than 150 programs in 45 countries." 5:13:23 PM
Reuters | Latest Financial News / Full News Coverage
: "Dutch firm Philips Electronics said on Monday it was preparing to mass-produce a slim, book-sized display panel onto which consumers could download newspapers and magazines -- then roll up and put away. The 5-inch display, which can show detailed images, can be rolled up into a pen-sized holder. .. Philips said it had created the displays using electronics circuits made of plastics, which power a monochrome display created with technology from E Ink, a privately-held U.S. company from Cambridge, Massachusetts. "We can produce this in batches. It's no longer a research project. We're going to build a pilot line that should be ready in 2005 to make one million displays a year," a spokesman at Philips Research said. Europe's largest maker of consumer electronics and lighting has already shown prototypes of a glass-based E Ink display which will be in the shops later this year. That sort of screen, used in pocket computers, can cost tens of dollars apiece." E-Ink has been under development for years. It requires much less power than LCD panels and works better outdoors or using ambient light, so it's likely to have wide application where power is short. Black and white only for now. 12:38:08 PM
New Explorer hole could be devastating: "Explorer 6 users (and possibly users of earlier versions) could be fooled into downloading what look like safe files but are in fact whatever the author wishes them to be - including executables. The previous spoofing problem allowed Explorer users to think they were visiting one site when in fact they were visiting somewhere entirely different. The implications are not only troublesome, but Microsoft’s failure to include a fix for the problem in its January patches has led many to believe it cannot be prevented. If the same is true for this spoofing issue, then it will only be a matter of time before someone who thinks they are visiting one website and downloading one file will in fact be visiting somewhere entirely different and downloading whatever that site’s owner decides. ..
We also have reason to believe there is no fix. It may be that today’s flaw is identical to one found nearly three years ago by Georgi Guninski in which double-clicking a link in Explorer led you to believe you were downloading a text file but were in fact downloading a .hta file. Guninski informed Microsoft in April 2001. The fact that the issue has been born afresh suggests rather heavily that the software giant has no way of preventing this from happening. ..
So how bad could it get? Just off the top of our heads - suppose someone set up a fake Hutton Inquiry site today with a link to the report’s summaries - how many people across the UK would download a worm this afternoon? And imagine the computers it would end up on. " 11:15:38 AM