Sungle rises, M$ sets

People are getting really excited about Sun and Google teaming up. I can't quite see why though. The only concrete thing to come out of is that you can now get the Google Toolbar as an optional add-on when you download the Java runtime.

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Some of you may find US-hosted streaming music and other content over the internet slow or not working at all, depending on which international transit provider your ISP uses. The reason for this could be the recent depeering between big backbone boys Cogent and Level 3. In brief, the two rather large networks are no longer punting packets to one another and customers on the two different networks can’t reach each other directly.

As with past peering wars, this one’s all about money and will end when one provider decides it is hurting too much – usually when customers get fed up with spotty connectivity and head off to another provider.

The arguments that Level 3 put forward sound familiar though. It felt it was offering free capacity because it is the bigger network provider. No prizes for guessing which large New Zealand network provider said the same.

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- Sungle rises, M$ sets?

People are getting really excited about Sun and Google teaming up. I can’t quite see why though. The only concrete thing to come out of is that you can now get the Google Toolbar as an optional add-on when you download the Java runtime.

Yes, there’s talk about Google building a web-based office productivity suite based on Sun’s Star Office and giving it away for free but… aren’t we over running apps in web-browsers already?

Nevertheless, share traders see something in the deal, because the price of MSFT stock has dropped like a stone in the last few days. Google’s share price has rocketed however.

Google is currently the company that can do no wrong, and everything it touches must turn to gold. Does that include an outfit like Sun though, which seems so good at picking technology trends like network computing, but which is so bad at capitalising on them? The Java development platform is Sun’s only success story lately. Sun’s hardware platform was as the forefront with many things like 64-bit support and multi-core processors, but it has been mangled by cheaper and more powerful Intel x86 gear to the point that it itself is selling AMD-based boxes. With its customers shifting to Intel x86, there is no real reason for them to use Sun’s UNIX operating system, Solaris, because Linux and BSD did everything they wanted and were free. Sun is now giving away Solaris 10 for free whereas Microsoft is still in a position to charge for Windows.

One of the early adopters of cheap x86 servers running Linux was Google, in fact, making the deal with Sun seem curiouser and curiouser. Google is a big user of Java however, and may want to use that as a counterweight to Microsoft’s upcoming WinFX platform, which pervades all its future products from desktops to applications to servers.

We shouldn’t forget either that Sun is the company that last year struck a deal with Microsoft over OpenOffice. Under that deal, Sun’s StarOffice customers were protected from being sued by Microsoft, whereas OpenOffice users could be taken to court for patent infringement.

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