Katt Has Laundry List of Tips

Opinion: An MP3 player that washes clothes, too; Microsoft scrubs its Professional Developers Conference this year.


"We all know that crap is king, give us dirty laundry," sang the dulcet-toned Drudge, Don Henley-like, when he heard that LG had applied for a patent for an MP3-playing washer and dryer.

The Katt sighed when he read the abstract of U.S. patent 20070118862, which describes a home appliance that includes an "MP3 player adapted for storing contents and a washing device for washing or drying clothes."

"Hmm, yet another thing to break down around the house," groused the Grimalkin. The Lynxs iLaundry lament was soon interrupted when the KattPhones new ring tone, Sonic Youths "Washing Machine," brought forth a call from a crony. The caller was a fund-raising friend of the Feline who noted that Siebel Systems founder Tom Siebel has made provisions to leave $100 million to his alma mater, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, upon his death.

"Must be kinda creepy knowing an entire school is now anxiously awaiting your health to fail," mused the Mouser. The pal also pointed out that the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation tossed $105 million toward creating a public health institute at the University of Washington. Amusingly, the center will be run by Dr. Christopher Murray, who was slated to head a similar program at Harvard until Oracle boss Larry Ellison reneged on a pledge of $115 million to fund the project. "Rivals even in philanthropy," tittered the Tabby.

The Katt soon skatted off to Beantown to meet an old Microsoft watcher at Luckys Lounge. There, with some Jack in a rocks glass and a cool Rat Pack soundtrack in the background, the duo talked shop. The pal told the Puss Microsoft has canceled its PDC (Professional Developers Conference) for October. The current buzz is that the Red-mondians feel people need time to digest everything the company has currently tossed out at them, although one would think developers would still like to get together and compare notes.

As Sinatras version of "Where or When" played lightly in the background, the pal mentioned that rumors that Microsoft is still looking to overtake Google in the search business have heated up again. Word has it that Microsoft has a crack team of developers attempting to create an über-search engine in an underground lair in Silicon Valley. "Why am I picturing Ballmer running the project in a nehru jacket and stroking a white cat?" cackled the Kitty.

The pal asked Spence what else was new. "Well, I hear that Dell may stop manufacturing TVs and that Nintendo may be announcing an external hard drive to boost memory for its Wii gaming console," said Spence.

After ordering another round, the Furry Ones friend said that folks have been chuckling about Gates appearance at the recent D: All Things Digital conference. "Imagine a game machine where you can just pick up the bat and swing it or the tennis racket and swing it," Gates reportedly told attendees. "Boy, dya think the Wii developers at Nintendo wish theyd imagined such a device?" chuckled Spence.

Dont forget me at go.eweek.com/kattoon

Spill your guts at spencer_katt@ziffdavis.com, or give the Katt a howl at 781-938-2627.

Spencer F. Katt

Spencer F. Katt

Spencer F. Katt, the Whiskered Wonder, has been the mascot and tipster extraordinaire for eWEEK and its predecessor print publication PC Week since 1984. The Gadabout Gatto makes the rounds of...