Re: Telus Quebec sells off training unit (March 14)

If training is such a high volume, low margin business, how does BigKnowledge make any money? Who is the deep-pocketed backer who keeps

it afloat? Who will be their target in Ontario or the rest of the country?

Craig Ivory

Re: Public sector pries into digital music hardware (March 13)

I’m a little disappointed hasn’t taken a look at the new tax proposed by the Copyright Board of Canada from the perspective of the little guy.

A couple of quick points. My hard drive has some MP3s on it. If you wanted to treat my 100 gigabyte hard drive as a large memory stick, its cost just went from $400 to about $ 8,400.00. The memory stick may be used more often for stolen MP3s, but that’s no basis for a law. This is nearly a 100 per cent tax on CDRs. A $100 tax on MP3 players is a lot, certainly enough to encourage some cross-border shopping and a stigma that Canada is anti-digital. Never mind the fact that the tax will quickly stretch into several hundred given the pace of memory increases in these device.

Why are just musicians being compensated? Why not the visual arts as well? As a software developer whose software could be re-distributed illegally, why isn’t my company being compensated? At least it may help compensate for the surtax we already pay to do our data backups on CD. But clearly, the line up starts with the big money already in the pockets of the recording industry.

The music industry decided to sell digital, and now we’re being asked to pay their insurance premiums. It’s ridiculous and very bad precedent.

Charlie Younghusband

Re: Sun lawsuit could taint Java’s image (March 11)

The impact of Microsoft’s decision is actually very low. Applets popping up in web pages will be impacted, that is about all. It does not compromise serious Java server-client application development. On the other hand, Sun is right in criticizing Microsoft’s attempt to limit Java on XP since there is no good reason to do that.

Against commercial politics, you play a commercial-lawsuit game or you let Microsoft behave the way it wants. The latter attitude I think would rather tarnish Sun’s image among the developer community than the other way around. The .Net development kit and C# as a glue for multi-language code management is another story and has basically been received very well, even among the open source community. I do not believe it could be compromised by asking Microsoft to make out-of-the-box Explorer Java compatible. Your article is confusing many different things. I would have expected sharper coverage considering what I usually read in your pages.

Xavier Blaisel

Re: Sun lawsuit could taint Java’s image (March 11)

You conclude your article by stating that the customers’ verdict doesn’t matter anymore. I have to agree! I don’t think it has mattered for many years.

All I ever hear about is the poor quality of Microsoft applications – ESPECIALLY their operating system. If the verdict of consumers really did matter, Microsoft would have been out of business long ago! Unfortunately, as I’m sure you know, due to their terrible (and illegal) business practices and total lack of morals they have managed to destroy any other options a consumer might have for desktop products and OSes. It’s Microsoft’s continued efforts to embrace and extend open standards – thereby controlling them – that have caused so many problems, especially for companies like Sun.

Although Sun might be doing the wrong thing here, I can only think that it is providing a step towards reducing the frightening monopoly that Microsoft has over the IT industry, and the desktop specifically, it must be a good thing. Judging Sun as being wrong in anything they do regarding Java is hardly fair considering what Microsoft themselves have done to anything they consider competition (which is to say almost everything). At the end of the day, the Java standard is on the road to becoming an excellent one. It offers choices for business that nothing else on the market offers (except perhaps something like Perl). .Net is hardly comparative and simply locks you into a vendor of low quality software. I’d hardly consider that a better solution.

John Tobin

Re: Manufacturer catches the wirless wave (March 11)

I read your article “”Manufacturer catches the wireless wave”” with interest. Here in South Dundas, Ont., we have implemented a fibre optic and wireless GigE system to deliver broadband services to our rural-urban and rural farming community. We have Extreme Networks GigE switches in three of our rural villages, connected with Tsumani radios, and delivering 10 and 100 Mbps services over 400 fibre pairs and three wireless distribution base stations. We reach 5-8 km into the farm areas and the community-owned network is growing.

M. Toms

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