Morgan Stanley is the banker representing Electronic Arts in its unsolicited buyout bid for rival game publisher Take-Two, the investment bank confirmed Monday.
While that news alone is no big deal, consider this: Morgan Stanley is also representing Microsoft in its unsolicited buyout offer for Yahoo, which was announced a mere 25 days ago.
That's two megabillion-dollar buyout bids the premier investment banking firm has agreed to handle in the past month. And both have the potential to get mean and nasty, should the target companies kick and scream all the way to the altar.
So, this raises the … Read more
Linus Torvalds, leader of the Linux kernel project that's among the best-known open-source threats to Windows, has words of praise for Microsoft's announcement last week that it would share some previously hard-to-get technology with open-source programmers.
"I may make fun of Microsoft occasionally, and yeah, I think they do stupid things at times, but I think this one was a step in the right direction," Torvalds said in an e-mail.
"Could it have been even more? Sure. But give them credit for at least seeming to open up a little, even if it probably was … Read more
Has your tech company played coy with a potential suitor lately? You may want to rethink your reaction.
In the past four months, Oracle, Microsoft, and Electronic Arts have all launched high-profile, unsolicited buyout bids for reluctant targets. Such efforts are otherwise known as bear hugs.
Oracle put the squeeze on middleware competitor BEA Systems in October; Microsoft did likewise with Yahoo at the start of this month; and on Sunday, EA made a play for rival game publisher Take-Two Interactive Software.
Did someone forget to put the lid back on the honey jar?
In the case of Oracle, it … Read more
I suppose this was inevitable: Best Buy has the Xbox 360 HD DVD drive $49.99, down from $129.99 (the price still listed on Microsoft's site). You get one free movie in the box (King Kong--blech) and five by mail.
I've got one of these babies, and it's pretty good. It serves up 1080p and provides a pair of USB ports. However, it employs component video outputs, not HDMI, so it can't upconvert standard-def DVDs (unless you have an Xbox 360 Elite, which does, of course, offer HDMI connectivity). That's a pretty big downside, … Read more
Some have asked me to clarify what this means that I'll be a "consultant [to Microsoft] on these interoperability initiatives." It's very easy to do so: I'm not and I don't know. I have not been asked to be a "consultant" to Microsoft; rather, I've been asked to serve as an advisor to Microsoft (completely uncompensated) to help keep it honest in its efforts, as have a few other members of the open-source development and business community (to be announced at some point, though I don't know when).
But on the second part ("I don't know"), I have no idea what this will entail as all I've received to date is an informal invitation over the phone from Sam Ramji.
I wouldn't read too much into it - I've been very public about my criticism (and sometime admiration) for Microsoft's products and business strategy. My opinion won't change until Microsoft changes.… Read more
Microsoft is proposing on Monday a new way for marketers to think about the value of clicks on Internet ads, with the understanding that the last click a consumer makes isn't necessarily the most important.
Say a consumer sees an ad for a product in a video ad one day, and then clicks on a text ad to visit the retailer's site the next day, and then eventually sees a banner ad that leads to a purchase. All of the monetary credit tends to go to the text link that was clicked on, says John Chandler, principal analyst … Read more
You trust Microsoft Office with your most important documents, spreadsheets, e-mail, and presentations. Unfortunately, many of the default security settings in Office applications may not provide a sufficient level of protection for your data, your system, and your reputation. Follow these steps to fine-tune the security settings in Office 2003; tomorrow I'll cover the new security options in Office 2007's Trust Center and elsewhere.
Office 2003 lets you encrypt files so that you need a password to read or edit them. In Word 2003, open the document and click Tools > Protect Document. To restrict the styles that … Read more
Got a good idea for a health care application? If so, you could get as much as $500,000 in funding from Microsoft.
Microsoft has created a $3 million fund to invest in applications built for its HealthVault electronic medical records platform, the company announced Monday at the start of the Healthcare Information and Management Systems Society (HIMSS) 2008 annual conference in Orlando, Fla.
Launched in October, HealthVault is intended to allow people to access their medical records through any device, regardless of the health care provider or insurer.
Google is expected to make a health care-related announcement of its … Read more
Microsoft will end production of the external HD DVD drive for its Xbox 360 video game console, according to a report by the Associated Press.
The company said it would, however, continue to offer warranty support for the peripheral.
"HD DVD is one of the several ways we offer a high definition experience to consumers and we will continue to give consumers the choice to enjoy digital distribution of high definition movies and TV shows directly to their living room, along with playback of the DVD movies they already own," Blair Westlake, a corporate vice president of Microsoft'… Read more