Mad as a Red Hatter

The solar system and CA downsize, as Sun officials apologize

Great Neptunes ghost!" the Katt cried into the KattPhone to a feline friend at the news. "Plutos no longer a planet?!" Astronomers were meeting in Prague, Czech Republic, on Aug. 23 to vote on whether they should add three—or more—planets, but instead they subtracted by one. "Walt Disney must be spinning in his grave," said Spence, hanging up.

His mind reeling with the ramifications of downsizing from the magical number 9, the frazzled Feline was furiously e-mailing his sources for more Pluto information when a note landed about CA and its $200 million cost-cutting efforts. Employees are hopping mad that the company formerly known as Computer Associates is cutting out the free-breakfast tradition that founder Charles Wang instituted more than 20 years ago.


Never mind that more than 1,000 employees will be getting the ax as well, were talking doughnuts here! Coffee will still be served—good for those working late hours—but dinners for such employees (at least those who are left) are also going away. "Whats next, desks and chairs cost extra?" laughed Le Chat. "Maybe they should cut back on Swainsons helicopter!"

Spence couldnt get through his e-mail without one negative news nugget about Dell. The beleaguered vendor has decided enough is enough when it comes to MP3 players and is discontinuing the Dell DJ Ditty unit—this on the same day that Apple agreed to pay Creative Technology $100 million to settle a patent dispute over technologies used in the iPod. "Now," said Spencer, "if only they had decided to name it the DJ Kitty ..."

Unable to get astronomical antics out of his head, Spence calmed himself by watching some old "Star Trek" reruns—the original series, of course. He was just settling in to "The Naked Time" when the KattPhone rang once more. "Sun is at it again," the tipster tattled. "Sun Microsystems."

The caller related that an e-mail sent out by one of Suns agency representatives was a bit overzealous not only in speculating that Oracle is eyeing an acquisition of Red Hat but also in trashing the Linux distribution vendors service and support and suggesting that recipients Google "Red Hat sucks." The writer implied that Red Hats absence from LinuxWorld was a sign to some Sun supporters that Red Hat is toast and ripe for the plucking.

The missive was so malicious that Sun officials sent out apologies for the rep being over the line and not getting official sign-off. Other tipsters remarked that it wasnt too long ago that Sun was kissing Red Hats you know what and Scott McNealy was wearing a penguin suit.

"Aye," remarked Mr. Scott from the telly, "the haggis is in the fire for sure."


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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...