News of the Tech and more

Three anti-spyware bills are working their way through Congress, and the FTC has achieved its first victory in its lawsuit against “Spamford” Wallace. On Thursday the US District Court granted a temporary restraining order against Wallace prohibiting him from exploiting Internet vulnerabilities to place spyware on computers. Wallace was given 24 hours to pull his software from the web.

PalmOne has officially announced the release of the Treo 650. Sprint has cornered the market on the hot phone through sometime next year. Sprint says the phone will be available by mid-November and cost around $500. Wi-Fi support will not be available at first, but PalmOne does expect to make a Wi-Fi card for the phone eventually.

Sprint also crippled the bluetooth implementation on their version of the 650. One more reason not to use Sprint. Besides, I am loving T-Mobile here in Los Angeles. Any ATT users out there? I advise you to switch. T-Mobile works so much better.

Meanwhile Google shares were up another 15% on Friday, topping $180/share at one point. Thanks to a strong earnings report on Thursday, two analysts are saying it’s worth over $200.

An AOL survey shows that 20% of home computers are infected with viruses. 80% are infected with spyware. Infected machines had an average of 93 different spyware programs on them. Technical experts from AOL and the National Cyber Security Alliance examined 329 computers in the survey. More than 70% of owners falsely thought they were protected from online threats.

The DOJ has given its go ahead for Cingular’s acquisition of AT&T Wireless. The merger now has to go to the FCC for approval. I wonder if they will get it? The merger will give Cingular 47.6 million subscribers, making it the number one wireless carrier in the US of A.

The tech industry received a big tax break on Friday. President Bush signed a bill offering $136 billion in corporate tax relief, including a reduction from 35% to %5.25 in the tax rate on foreign profits for US multinationals. The breaks have been criticized for encouraging offshoring of jobs, but the US tech industry lobbied heavily for them saying they needed the money for additional R&D and investment. Senator Feinstein’s amendment requiring companies to spend their tax windfall in the US was rejected.

And, Apple’s big press conference is today. Will they announce the new U2 iPod? We’ll see.

Mmm theme iPods. Interesting. Supposedly in basic black for the U2 one. Now, if I could just get a computer that color. A black 12″ powerbook would be cool. Or, maybe a black G5 tower. What can I say, I like black. Probably all those years in the movie business.

Later.

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