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Windows 7 Drives Holiday Software Sales

U.S. software retail sales fell slightly by just over 1 percent for the 2009 holiday season, according to The NPD Group.

Sales for the 5-week holiday period totaled $278 million dollars, up from the 13 percent decline during the 2008 holiday season.

A Print Shop for a New Decade

At the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, Encore unveiled a new version of The Print Shop. Yep, that’s right – The Print Shop, a time time-honored desktop publishing software that’s been around for decades. The company has completely redone it this time around.

Google to Alert Webmasters of New Software Versions
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Google is going to start letting webmasters know when the software they run on their site is outdated. Through Webmater Tools, Google will begin alerting users of new versions of software when they are released.

Skype Founders Reportedly Close to Settlement with eBay
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Update 3: Skype and eBay may be close to resolving their issues. Om Malik reports:

IT Sector To Help Global Economic Recovery

The expected growth rate for IT employment of 3 percent per year is more than three times the rate of growth of total employment and a solid indicator that investing in IT will contribute to economic recovery and growth, according to a new study by Microsoft and IDC.

Microsoft Puts Out New Version of Silverlight
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Microsoft has launched Silverlight 3 and Expression 3 today. Silverlight is a browser plug-in that enables companies to design, develop, and deliver web apps. Expression is a set of design tools and technologies.

The new Silverlight release in particular is big news. Over 1/3 of Internet devices have installed version 2 since its launch less than nine months ago.

Microsoft also announced that MGM and NBC Sports are using Silverlight for different forthcoming video efforts.

Matt Cutts Answers Questions About Directories and Ranking
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As you may know, Google’s Matt Cutts frequently answers questions from Google users on the Google Webmaster Central YouTube channel. There are a couple recent ones in which he addresses questions about directories and how they contribute to a site’s rankings.

The first question is:

Will Google consider Yahoo! Directory and BOTW (Best of the Web) as sources of paid links? If no, why is this different from another site that sells links?

Intel Invests $884 Million in Mobile
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Intel has announced today that it is acquiring software-maker Wind River Systems for $884 million. Wind River makes embedded devices.

Embedded systems and mobile devices include smart phones, mobile Internet devices, other consumer electronics (CE) devices, in-car "info-tainment" systems and other automotive areas, networking equipment, aerospace and defense, energy and thousands of other devices.

Does Microsoft Want to Take Your Whole PC to the Cloud?
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Microsoft has filed a patent for a "Metered Pay-As-You-Go Computing Experience." The exact words of the filing’s abstract are as follows:

Election To Impact Indian Outsourcing?
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Reports have been surfacing since last night’s election that while overall, India seems to have embraced the election of Barack Obama as the President of the United States, there have been some worries among the country’s people due to Obama’s position on outsourcing.

IBM Gets More Social Than Ever

IBM has opened a social software research center dedicated to helping customers and partners better collaborate on a global scale. The center is headquartered at Cambridge, and staff will work closely with university faculty and students, as well as corporate partners.
 

Quebec Open Source Community Goes After Government
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Quebec’s open source organization Facil is suing the province’s government for spending millions of dollars on Microsoft software, and never entertaining the idea of using anything open source. The problem here is that there is no room for competition  because the government automatically goes to Microsoft.

Court: Open Source Can Dictate the Rules
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It’s no secret that there’s money in open source software. So naturally, along with it comes some rules.

"Copyright holders who engage in open source licensing have the right to control the modification and distribution of copyrighted material."

So says the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit.

Mobile Browser Opera Mini Gains Speed
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The incremental update of Opera Mini to version 4.1 gave the little browser faster operation and a few extra features.

Google Urchin Vs. Google Analytics

If you remember correctly, Google bought the Urchin Software Corporation in 2005, and reformed Urchin software to Google Analytics. The one major change in the software was that Google allowed Analytics to be free.

Zune Software Download Now Available!
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Hey Everyone, The Zune Software is currently up on Zune.net.

» You can find the software HERE. System Requirements

Google Software Engineer Explains MapReduce Concept

Mark Chu-Carroll is a Google software engineer, and in a personal blog post this week explained the concept of one of Google’s programming models: MapReduce, which splits a task onto many computers on Google’s server farm (server farm, or single super computer, depending on how you look at it) to be quickly crunched.

MySQL and the Google MacGyver Connection

A reader commented that MySQL isn’t “enterprise ready”, to which another reader wrote:

“I hate it when snobby DBAs or managers scoff at MySQL as if it isn’t ready to play with the big boys. Google called, they’d like to loan you a clue.”

Software Industry Continues to Consolidate

As Zack reported, Sun is buying MySQL for ~$800M plus $200M in options. Interestingly, the MySQL acquisition represents 8% of Sun’s current market cap (~$13 Bil). While I’m happy for the MySQL team, my views on Sun’s OSS “strategy” are mixed at best.

Rethinking the OSS Business Model

Fleury and Rodrigues Separated at Birth?

Come on, you have to admit, the resemblance is uncanny. I’m obviously kidding. I’m much better looking. His sizable bank account and ability to keep a beat probably balances the score though ;-)

Search Marketer Begs Google To Slow Down

Google’s white-hot pace of releasing and tweaking products has one marketing pro asking the company to ease up on the accelerator.