CNN reports that "switching from a Windows-operated computer to a Linux-operated one could slash computer-generated e-waste levels by 50%." It's no longer about software freedom. It's also about environmental responsibility.
A UK government study in late 2004 reported that there were substantial green benefits to running a Linux open source operating system (OS) on computers instead of the ubiquitous Windows OS, owned by Microsoft. The main problem with Windows users was that they had to change their computer twice as many times as Linux users, on average, thereby effectively creating twice as much computer-generated e-waste.
Those of us who actually like the idea of getting a new machine on a regular basis (mea culpa) should not cheer too loudly, however. Actually, I've found that I pass my Macs down to other family members such that they stay in use for generations...or five or six years, whichever comes first. :-)
Back to Linux....Do you think that this elongation of effective use of Linux machines has more to do with the lack of a strong Linux desktop commercial agenda? Consider:… Read more
Microsoft is stepping closer to providing anywhere access to Office files. The free Office Live Workspace (more here), which lets people share work in Word, Excel and PowerPoint online, is expanding today to invite more beta testers.
You can sign up to try the work in progress at OfficeLive.com, although access may not be immediate. A final version is set for next spring.
When Office 2007 debuted nearly a year ago, it seemed curious that Microsoft offered no easy, one-click option for accessing work from the Web. Meanwhile, Zoho built an add-in for Office 2007, as Google Docs & Spreadsheets and other tools allowed people to share as well as compose work within a browser.
The free, ad-supported Office Live Workspace is a bridge to Office software, not a browser-based replica. Workspace synchronizes changes made to files stored both on a desktop and at Office Live's servers, including Outlook contacts and events. It works with Windows XP SP2, 2003 Server, or Vista with Internet Explorer 6 and Firefox 2 or higher (required for users of Mac OS 10.2 and up).
The online tools preview Word, Excel, and PowerPoint files as well as PDFs, PNGs, and JPGs. Workspace is meant to work in tandem with Word, Excel and PowerPoint XP, 2003, or 2007 running locally on a PC. You can preview, not edit, documents from a browser. Web Notes, on the other hand, do enable the creation and formatting of small text documents online.
Office Live Workspace emphasizes collaboration rather than composition. To share documents with other people, you can send them a secure URL without requiring them to sign in with a Windows Live ID. Everyone with access to the workspace can make and view each others' comments.
Those invited for editing can make changes to the work, as long as they have Word, Excel, and PowerPoint on their hard drive. Office Live Workspace handily preserves the Track Changes feature from Office apps while also keeping five histories of a file. And the Share View screen allows control of another user's PC.
Another desktop component of this service is the Office Live Add-In for Microsoft Office. This is a quick download, although you'll have to restart the system afterward. Once it's installed, a Save to Office Live option will appear under the Office button within Word, Excel, or PowerPoint, with the subsequent dialog box showing your available workspaces.
Workspaces are collections of documents. Ten templates are built to manage a classroom, sports team, travels, job search, household, and so forth. For example, a travel workspace will include an expense report spreadsheet with Word files for an itinerary, packing list, and personal data. You can store a maximum of 500 workspaces containing 500 documents each for a total of 500 MB per account and 25 MB per file.
Office users who learn about these tools are likely to come to depend upon them to stash their work online with a few, quick clicks. Workplaces that use Microsoft's staple software will probably find Workspace a fine collaboration tool that makes it easy to take work away from the office.
This is a well-designed service, but I'd still like something not only to store work, but to let me make edits without opening local applications. What if you only want to correct a misspelled byline in a 20 MB report? You'll have to open Word, since Office Live Workspace doesn't even allow light, text only edits within a browser. I'll continue to lean on Google Docs for that.
Office Live Workspace, by the way, is not to be confused with Office Live Small Business, which offers a free domain name and Web design templates.
Please see more images after the jump.… Read more
Power Downloader is a lifelong Windows PC user, but he has a lot of respect for those who use other operating systems. Power knows that it's not as important what kind of computer you use as it is the software you choose to run on it. He has even admitted to Kitty Kilobyte in the past that both Mac and Linux operating systems are as attractive as they are functional.
That's why Power Downloader was pleased with an e-mail he received from Kitty Kilobyte the other day with a special program for his Windows PC. Kitty explained she … Read more
This is an interesting, old-school approach to organizing Web-based content on the desktop, unlike so much new webware that leans on the browser as the portal for anywhere-access to services. Another recently-released download that depends upon the Internet for most functionality is Microsoft's Windows Live apps bundle. However, while that package adds useful and novel tools, the AOL portal left me puzzled.
The AOL Desktop download … Read more
It's a good thing Microsoft's Windows Live Messenger Santa is just an AI-powered chat bot. You'd probably want to think twice before sitting on his lap.
According to The Register, the now-disabled Santa bot that was once IM-able at email@example.com was prone to off-topic suggestions about oral sex. Microsoft has acknowledged the claims and disabled the chat agent.
While this feature might have had appeal to a limited portion of adult users, the Santa bot was unfortunately designed to be used by children. According to The Register, Santa made a reference to oral sex when … Read more
Answer: More and more Linux and Mac users every day, with a dwindling (but still hefty) number of Windows users. Windows has lost traction all year, while these other two operating systems have gained:
Linux usage rose 14% in the last month. Maybe more people are doing their Christmas shopping with Ubuntu so that they can actually afford their Christmas shopping? :-)
Microsoft is serious about getting Windows XP to work on One Laptop Per Child's low-cost laptop, but the company still isn't sure it will be able to make a go of it.
In an interview, James Utzschneider, the general manager of Microsoft's emerging market unit, says Microsoft has devoted about 40 employees and contractors to work on its effort.
However, there are plenty of technical hurdles, he said. One of the biggest is the fact that the XO has no hard drive and only 1GB of built-in memory. The company concluded it needed at least 2GB of … Read more