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Microsoft Pri0

Welcome to Microsoft Pri0: That's Microspeak for top priority, and that's the news and observations you'll find here from Seattle Times technology reporter Matt Day.

October 13, 2006 at 4:24 PM

So 10 minutes ago: A review of the week of Oct. 9

Tech news

Back in February, Kim Peterson posted a Tech Tracks item on the mysterious Origami project that Microsoft was thought to be working on. In that post, she noted how a viral-marketing video about the project had been pulled, but had reappeared on an under-the-radar site called YouTube. Hardly eight months later, Google swoops in and buys that eyeball-drawing site for $1.65 billion. And Origami? That story is still unfolding — under the radar.

InfoSpace

The Bellevue company still hasn’t officially identified the customer that decided to take a big chunk of ringtone business in-house, but the consequences were felt this week. InfoSpace said it was laying off more than a third of its workforce — 250 out of 670. The customer in question is widely believed to be Cingular Wireless. .

Microsoft

Will it make the launch when it said it would or not? Microsoft seemed to answer that a bit more definitively today when it said it had — from its perspective — worked out competition concerns over Vista that were lodged by European and South Korean regulators, and that it was moving ahead with launching the new operating system in November to business customers and in January to consumers.

Wireless broadband

Any broad-based new technology is guaranteed to set off the hype machine. Such was the case in Boston this week, and the technology showered with attention was WiMax, the wireless broadband technology some have called Wi-Fi on steroids. Tricia Duryee’s stories from WiMax World captured some the industry’s excitement and reservations.

Financial

More fallout from stock options backdating investigations. Top executives from McAfee and Cnet resigned, and none other than Steve Jobs One could say it was a bad week for McAfee, as even the team that plays in the Oakland stadium that carries the virus fighter’s name pretty much resigned the first two games of the American League Championship Series. (As this is being written, the A’s just lost the third game, 3-0.)

T-Mobile USA

It’s not often that T-Mobile USA CEO Robert Dotson speaks to the press, but Tricia, who had a busy week, got him to sit down long enough to for an interview — in a car navigating the streets of Manhattan, no less.

Quote of the week

“Ray was one of the innovators of the Utah Miracle. He launched what would become Utah’s technology sector. He has left behind a monumental legacy and we are all in his debt..” — Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman, speaking of Ray Noorda, the Novell founder called the “Father of Network Computing,” who died this week at 82.

If you missed it …

Few stories get as much reader interest in what we produce as those that involve working at Microsoft. In May, addressing concerns over employee recruiting and retention, the company implemented a new compensation and benefits program. Ben Romano this week wrote an engagingprofile of Lisa Brummel, the senior executive behind those changes.

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