news of 2004-03-23

Apple announces shipping of single processor Xserve

According to Apple's Press Release, Apple is now shipping the Xserve model to customers. Cluster and dual processor models will start shipping in April.

[ written by fryke™ on 2004-03-23 at 15:03 CET ]
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Office 2004 on DVD?

According to sources testing the preview of MS Office 2004 :mac, some parts of the software mention that the software will come in form of a DVD instead of one (or more) CDs. Whether this will be a problem for users who simply don't have a DVD reading device (many older iMacs and iBooks as well as CD-RW-only TiBooks) or if there's also going to be a CD-version available is not known as of yet.

[ written by fryke™ on 2004-03-23 at 14:40 CET ]
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AAC is Audio-Codec for the ROM-part of DVD-Audio spec

... according to High Fidelity Review. (Found it in German at According to heise, the plan is to, additionally to uncompressed audio, add DRM'd AAC files to the DVD-Audio as a plus for consumers. The decision of the DVD-Forum may or may not have been based on iTMS's success.

Update: heise has just updated its article... It seems that the decision has in fact _not_ been made yet because of the high licensing price for MPEG-AAC.

[ written by fryke™ on 2004-03-23 at 12:35 CET ]
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Six barriers to open source adoption

During a keynote at the Open Source Business Conference 2004 last week, Ray Lane (former Oracle executive) laid out six barriers for wider open source adoption. Some of them also concern Apple (which is using open source tools in Mac OS X Server, too). Let's take a look where Apple could learn from some of these points.

1.) Lack of formal support. - Apple clearly has an advantage here.
2.) Velocity of change - While linux offers an advantage here in that security issues are fixed quite fast by the community, this isn't the way to go for corporations, as these fixes are often not tested very well when they're released. Also: You'll often find several options to 're-secure' your system, which might make decisions more (and too) difficult. Apple has an edge here, because they prepackage the overall system and yet issue security patches in a timely manner.
3.) Lack of roadmap - Apple has to learn here, and maybe more than linux. While one can look at the current developments of open source in General, linux (the kernel) specifically and even create input for some projects, with Apple it's the same every year (for now): Apple releases a new version of Mac OS X Server, an upgrade costs 999 USD per server (quite a price, isn't it...) and then server admins are left in the dark for a good part of the year until they have to decide whether to upgrade again for 999 USD or not. There's no public roadmap. There hasn't been one since the roadmap to Mac OS X, which was several years ago.
4.) Functional gaps - Here's where open source can shine, but often doesn't. And it's a bit worse for deployers of Mac OS X Server, because while an open source project might cover a gap, it often takes quit a bit longer until there's an OS X version and even more, of course, before Apple adopts something to the core of Mac OS X.

For a more in-depth look at all of the six points (but linux-focused, of course), take a look at the article at

[ written by fryke™ on 2004-03-23 at 12:22 CET ]
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OmniWeb 5 coming along nicely

Recent reports tell us that a fourth beta is coming soon, and that it adds - among other things - a lot of performance and bug fixes, iDisk synching. The final version of OW 5 will quite certainly make a splash in the Mac community. The 'Workspaces' feature alone makes it worth trying.

[ written by fryke™ on 2004-03-23 at 11:42 CET ]
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