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Microsoft Already Testing Windows Vista SP1

God, Microsoft is changing! Windows Vista is coming out soon, and they’re already looking for beta testers for Service Pack 1, which they plan to release in the second half of this year.

Betas and LEGOs

When O’Reilly talked about Web 2.0 and perpetual beta he was tryng to say (I think) that the classic software release cycle is becoming too slow and self-focused for modern companies and that companies should never stop to enhance their applications and services with help from the community.

Google Earth 4 Out Of Beta

The fourth incarnation of Google Earth was released this week with some interesting new features being heralded by enthusiasts. A new 3D building layer has been added in answer to Microsoft’s Virtual Earth 3D beta.

Review: Google Comments Beta
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While browsing Google Labs, I noticed new Firefox extensions.

Blogger Finds The Beta Exit

Google’s Blogger service has been running a couple of versions in parallel: the old Blogger they picked up from Pyra Labs, and the new beta built to replace it. The new Blogger has shed its beta tag and is ready for all those people who make blogging a New Year’s resolution.

Google Puts Domains Up For Sale

Not its domain names, of course, but ones that people may want to register while signing up for Google Apps for Your Domain services. It could be an indication of Google’s future intentions for the Apps services too.

Yahoo Mail Feels The Need For Speed

The Yahoo Mail beta offers sophisticated desktop client-like email features, but in terms of speed has demonstrated a dismayingly slow loading pace. It’s an issue that Yahoo has been working to fix.

French Parliament Switching to Open Office

The French parliament has said au revoir’ to Microsoft, according to a Yahoo News report:

Yahoo Maps Route Out Of Beta

After plenty of development, testing, and feedback, Yahoo has declared its Maps service ready to shed the Beta moniker and stand on its own.

ChaCha Beta Released; Users Seek Google

ChaCha, which describes itself as “the world’s largest live search engine,” is now available in beta form. The interesting feature is the defining one – ChaCha can supply “a human guide who assists you in real-time via an instant-message chat.”

Should All Browsers Be Considered Betas?

Last week, I commented that I think the release version of Internet Explorer 7 should still be regarded as a beta. I’ll be commenting more on that in today’s episode of the FIR podcast.

Facebook Testing Social Bookmarking

Techcrunch – Blog Archive – Facebook Beta Testing Social Bookmarking – Marshall Kirkpatrick has a post out saying that students with Facebook accounts from Berkeley and Stanford have been given access to a new bookingmarking feature on Facebook.

Windows Defender for XP Leaves Beta

Microsoft has released another fine piece of software, Windows Defender for Windows XP. Some new features the final release has over the most recent beta:

FeedDemon 2.1 Now Available

A new beta version of the popular FeedDemon RSS aggregator for Windows is now available.

Flash Player 9 Released for Linux

Adobe announced the release of the Flash Player 9 for Linux.

What’s New in BlueDragon 7?

New Atlanta, recently released Beta 1 of version 7 of thier BlueDragon CFML application server.

Office 2007 Beta Closes As RTM Begins

Office 2007 has entered the RTM process, and should actually be released to manufacturing in the next few weeks, according to an email from Microsoft.

Is Skype the new SmartTag?

I had dinner with Ajit Jaokar, CEO of Futuretext, a publishing company that publishes tech books like Mobile Web 2.0 and Russell Shaw, a prolific blogger (he writes a VoIP blog over on ZDNet, but also has political blogs and other blogging jobs over on Weblogs Inc, among others).

Google Groups Regroups With Beta

It’s more than just a facelift, as Google took the existing Groups service that grew from its long-ago purchase of Dejanews into a more Googly look with an expanded set of features.

Yahoo Mobilizes Sponsored Search

Their mobile web services available in the United States and the United Kingdom will see the beta launch of sponsored search results appearing on mobile handsets.

MapQuest Beta?

Yesterday, I saw some new features on MapQuest, including draggable maps.