Off Kilt-Er

Geeks of the glen; Symbol klatch; maltware.


Sent: Monday, August 8, 2005 12:17 AM

To: eWEEK readers

Subject: Geeks of the glen; Symbol klatch; maltware

"Och, laddie," burred the Baron of Babble when he heard that every adult in Scotland will get 100 pounds to put toward improving his or her basic computer skills. The computer education funding, which is available to every adult in Scotland regardless of income, is an extension of a program called the Individual Learning Account, which offers 200 pounds to lower-income students to help further their education in any field. "I can just see the Saturday Night Live skit," laughed the Lynx. "Sean Connery, Rod Stewart and Shrek all driving their instructor insane as they disregard their lesson and search for up kilt Web sites instead."


Suddenly, the KattPhones new ring tone, "Purple Heather," heralded a call from a crony who said William Nuti had quit his Symbol Technologies CEO post to become NCR chief exec. Nuti will replace interim CEO James Ringler, who will continue as company chairman. Ringler held the interim post after the defection of Mark Hurd, who left to take over as Hewlett-Packard head honcho. "Ya know," speculated the crony, "if memory serves me right, Mike Lawrie, recently deposed as Siebels CEO and replaced by George Shaheen, has joined Symbols board. One would think hed be a front-runner for the Symbol CEO post. Who knows, maybe he could engineer a buyout by his old friends at IBM." Not impossible, thought the Kitty, bidding his pal adieu. Shareholders must be fuming after the companys second-quarter earnings report showed a $30.5 million net loss. And a recently launched U.S. probe into charges by Symbol rival Intermec that Symbol infringed on three of its patents doesnt help.

Suddenly craving haggis, even though hed never sampled sheep guts, the Kitty sought sustenance in his buildings cafeteria. There, as he settled for shepherds pie, the tartaned Titan heard a fellow diner lament that Looseleaf Software had closed its doors. Seems the president of Looseleaf, Bob Balaban, has taken on a gig with IBM as a senior consulting IT specialist. As Le Chat gobbled his lunch, he chatted with acquaintances about Oracles recent purchase from Citigroup of a 41 percent stake in I-Flex, Indias biggest banking apps maker. Apparently, Oracle is also looking to scoop up 20 percent more of the companys outstanding public shares, with the total deal looking to cost Larry & Co. more than $900 million. "Thats a lot of rupees," pronounced the penniless Puss. Back at his desk, the Katt cracked a cold one and was amused to note that students at the IT University in Copenhagen claim to have created the worlds first open-source beer. Calling the recipe "Vores øl" (Our Beer) Version 1.0, the Scandinavian sudsmeisters said they were inspired by a quote from open-source guru Richard Stallman, who said, "Free software is a matter of liberty, not price. To understand the concept, you should think of free as in free speech, not as in free beer." Fellow imbibers are invited to check out "My two great loves!" exclaimed Spence. "Technology and beer!"

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...