One update aims to improve battery life on mobile devices, boost stability of wireless connections, and improve the operating system's response time following a period of inactivity. A second patch deals with the operating system's interactions with USB ports.
Microsoft is hoping that with some of Vista's wrinkles ironed out,
But, he insists, the situation is much better now. Not only are the hardware drivers out there, they are readily available.
Microsoft is also toying with a new way of improving its operating system--through its Windows Live online services.
"What we've decided is the way to deliver those experiences, whether it's communications or memories, is with Live," Nash said, referring to things like the Windows Live Photo Gallery. "Photos with Vista today is way better than when we shipped Vista a year ago."
Some News.com readers seemed unimpressed by Microsoft's message and critical of the company's efforts to assuage discontent.
"You could hear the balloon deflating on the marketing campaign shortly after the critics got a hold of it and it was released to the wild," to the News.com TalkBack forum.
Apple joined in the OS update fray with a few of its own. The
The update arrived just one day after Apple shipped what will
A couple of highlights worth calling out are RAW image support for some Panasonic, Olympus, Leica, and Canon cameras as well as reliability improvements for Intel-based Macs running VMware's Fusion virtualization software. Other Mac users might be interested to know that 10.4.11 improves the reliability of mounting external hard drives and a Mac's compatibility with third-party wireless networking equipment.
Listening to Oracle
If Oracle renews its bid for rival BEA Systems, of $17 a share. Larry Ellison, Oracle's chief executive, said the initial $6.7 billion, or $17 a share, offer for BEA seems overpriced these days.
"If we made another offer, the price would be lower," Ellison said during a Webcast of the analyst meeting. "They have done enough things now--and we'll have to see all the data--that clearly, the $17 price seems too high now."
The comments came during
Oracle President Charles Phillips played tour guide,
The company, for example, unveiled its Oracle VM, which is open-source server virtualization software designed to support Oracle and third-party applications. Oracle VM aims to offer a graphical interface for creating and managing groups of virtual servers running off of x86 and x86-64 based systems.
In other developments at the conference, Sun Microsystems and Dell announced a distribution agreement under which. The agreement brings two rivals together, with Dell gaining a relationship to better serve its customers already running Solaris on their systems and Sun a potentially larger market base for Solaris.
The agreement also calls for the companies to work together in certifying systems and creating products based on the Solaris partnership. The companies will work in unison to gain support from key resellers to distribute Solaris on Dell's PowerEdge servers.
Go go green
The LA Auto Show kicked off this week, and the most popular color at the event seems to be green--as in more environmentally friendly.
While it still won't get you the 45 mpg of a Toyota Prius, the new version of the
The 2007 Silverado Hybrid, according to the Environmental Protection Agency's fuel economy Web site, got about 15 mpg in the city and 19 mph on the highway. That's not much of an improvement over the efficiency of the regular Silverado pickup: depending on which engine you choose, that truck gets at the very worst 13 mpg driving in the city and at most 20 mpg on the highway, according to General Motors' own specs.
The Tahoe Hybrid uses a 6-liter V-8 gas engine in conjunction with electric motors for propulsion. The motors get electricity from a battery pack which gets charged by the engine and through regenerative braking. This system, along with another fuel-saving system called cylinder deactivation, gives the Tahoe Hybrid about 25 percent better fuel economy than its gasoline-only counterpart.
Meanwhile, Ford CEO Alan Mulally wants to talk about
Among the changes consumers can expect to see will be a 10 percent more fuel-efficient Ford Taurus due to transmission changes, an 8 percent more fuel-efficient 2008 Ford Escape and Mercury Mariner, a 3 percent more fuel-efficient Ford Focus, and a Ford F-150 pickup that gets 1 mpg more than usual.
Volkswagen used the auto show to
Also of note
Adobe Systems announced that Shantanu Narayen has been named as new chief executive,