The Perils Of Anti-Spyware

Further to an earlier post about whether you could trust a software provider enough to buy anti-keylogging and anti-spyware programs from them if they also sold spyware and keyloggers, here’s an interesting list from Spyware Warrior: programs that claim to be spyware removers but in fact install spyware. Most of these have a commercial bent, but …

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Why Real Player Is Really, Really Unpleasant

Interesting post, and subsequent discussion, at Tomas Jogin’s blog, on the Real Player — which does streaming audio and video, and was once the bee’s knees. Now it ain’t so, mainly because of its very invasive way of installing itself on your computer, and then being very, very hard to get rid of. I’ve hated …

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Another Popup Blocker, But This Time From Minsk

Here’s a new version of another program designed to block popup ads, but which also performs the (admittedly increasingly common) trick of opening multiple browser windows at once. It’s called AdsCleaner. I haven’t tried it, but I do like the honest PR release, just out, so I am going to quote: “New version features optimized process …

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More On Camera Phones As Bar Scanners

Here’s more on a subject I looked at in December (and then promptly forgot about): Using your camera phone as a bar code scanner. Wired says there are at least four software companies that have released applications that let you take a photo of a bar code, which will then trigger the download of coupons, …

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Some (Not So) Light Reading

For those of you easing back into work after the holidays, or stuck in the office before the New Year partying begins, here are some suggestions for Internet reading. The future of Microsoft: Is 2004 going to be Redmond’s swansong? Some people think so, including The Inquirer, which says that the company’s flat first quarter …

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Zone Labs Snapped Up – Firewalls R Us?

My favourite firewall, Zone Alarm, is being bought by another firewall maker, Check Point Software Technologies [CNet News.com]. It looks to me as if there’s quite significant consolidation within the security software industry, not just from the point of view of big guys buying the smaller guys, but of companies trying to create products that …

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Use Your Phone As A Barcode Scanner

infoSync World reports of new software that allows camera phone users to take a picture of a barcode and then, say, retrieve information about the product: whether it’s cheaper elsewhere, dietary information, or downloading music samples from a poster advertising a new album. The product, ScanZoom, is made by US-based software company Scanbuy. The article …

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Update: Microsoft Goes Soft in Thailand

 It’d be too much to suggest that Bill Gates reads my column, but Microsoft seem to be buying my idea (well not mine, really) that prices of their software should be geared to what local people can afford. IDG News Service’s Taipei Bureau reports that the US software company has cut the price of its …

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Less Features, Less Bugs Please

 From the It’s About Time Someone’s Talking Sense Dept comes an interesting column by Sean Ammirati the founder and director of Avanti Strategies, who points out that in software, as in most things, less is more (and whose web site seems to take the concept to its furthest practical point).     Writing in InformationWeek he …

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