Attendees rocked out in the Big Apples Hudson Theater as rock legends Gary U.S. Bonds, Chubby Checker and the Shirelles helped Hewlett-Packard launch its Compaq Tablet PC last week. The audience was also treated to host Dick Clark, of "American Bandstand" fame, quizzing HP execs on music trivia. "Who knew company Prez Michael Capellas knew so much about the Jackson Five," cackled the Kitty. The crowd really cut loose when Chubby Checker invited them on stage with him as he performed "The Twist." The Furball interpreted Capellas movements as something closely resembling the twist, but it was HP CEO Carly Fiorinas bump dance with Checker that drew cheers from the crowd.
Later, when Fiorina asked the audience, "Is this a sexy product, or what?" El Gato was pretty sure it had been the dancing—not the demo—that prompted an audience member to yell back, "Youre sexy, Carly!"
Frequent fliers may soon find the phrase "The pilot has asked that you turn off all electronic devices" replaced with "The captain has OKd Internet access." At least on overseas flights, anyway. It seems Lufthansa, using Connexion by Boeing, successfully sent the first e-mail via a broadband Internet connection during a flight from Frankfurt, Germany, to Washington.
Using a laptop to connect to Lufthansas intranet, the German airline has now gone where U.S. airlines have chosen not to go. American, Delta and United all shelved plans to implement Connexion last year. After suffering tremendous monetary losses after the Sept. 11 attacks, the U.S. airlines cut plans to install the system.
But starting Jan. 15, Lufthansa will allow passengers to test the service, currently dubbed FlyNet, at no charge for about three months.
El Gato hears the launch of a new storage "coalition" that included Hitachi, IBM, Sun and Veritas, which planned to support the storage industrys evolving Common Information Model, didnt go as smoothly as planned. In a tense, hour-long conference call, reps from the Storage Networking Industry Association convinced current and future members of the nameless coalition that a separate splinter group "would do more harm than good." A Tabby tattler claimed a lot of folks listening to the conference with their mute buttons on were having quite a laugh over the debacle. The negative reception that the conference received forced coalition members to cancel a planned follow-up announcement that included new members.