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February 27, 2008

EU fines Microsoft record $1.4bn

Filed under: General,Open Source — wan muhamad azmi mamat @ 8:57 pm

 

eufinesmicrosoft.jpgThe European Commission has fined US computer giant Microsoft for defying sanctions imposed on it for anti-competitive behaviour.

Microsoft must now pay a record 899m euros ($1.4bn; £680.9m) after it failed to comply with a 2004 ruling that it abused its position.

The ruling said that Microsoft was guilty of not providing key code to rival software makers.

EU regulators said the firm was the first to break an EU anti-trust ruling.

The fines come on top of earlier fines of 280m euros imposed in July 2006, and of 497m euros in March 2004.

“Microsoft was the first company in 50 years of EU competition policy that the Commission has had to fine for failure to comply with an antitrust decision,” Competition Commissioner Neelie Kroes said in a statement.

Future improvements?

An investigation concluded in 2004 that Microsoft was guilty of freezing out rivals in products such as media players, while unfairly linking its Explorer internet browser to its Windows operating system at the expense of rival servers.

The European Court of First Instance upheld this ruling last year, which ordered Microsoft to pay 497m euros for abusing its dominant market position.

Last week, the firm announced that it would open up the technology of some of its leading software, including Windows, to make it easier to operate with rivals’ products.

“As we demonstrated last week with our new interoperability principles and specific actions to increase the openness of our products, we are focusing on steps that will improve things for the future,” Microsoft said.

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February 25, 2008

sQuba: world’s first underwater car

Filed under: Technology — wan muhamad azmi mamat @ 1:58 pm

squba2.jpgA Swiss company called Rinspeed has recently announced its newest project: an underwater car. Named “sQuba,” the car can both drive on roads, and then – at the push of a button – dive up to 10 meters (33 feet) under the sea.

Rinspeed describes sQuba as the world’s first real car to drive both on land and underwater, thanks to some cutting-edge technology. The car has a steel chassis, while its lightweight body panels are made of carbon nanotubes.

An electric motor provides rear-wheel drive while on roads. Underwater, two propellers in the stern and two jet drives in the bow propel the “amphibious” vehicle. With zero emissions, the design is even environmentally friendly, eliminating any pollution into the sea.

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The two-seater also includes a self-contained on-board oxygen system to supply the driver and passenger with fresh air for breathing.

Rinspeed CEO Frank Rinderknecht admits that part of the inspiration for the underwater car comes from the 1977 James Bond hit “The Spy Who Loved Me.” The sQuba concept symbolizes the realization of this fantasy that once sparked his imagination.

“And exactly thirty years later this amazing – yet at the time animated – film sequence materializes and becomes reality, in today’s world,” said Rinderknecht.

The sQuba car will be presented at the Geneva Motor Show, which runs from March 6-16, 2008. However, mass-production of the car is not planned for the foreseeable future.

February 22, 2008

Politik: Salah satu cabang kehidupan

Filed under: General — wan muhamad azmi mamat @ 11:59 am

Saya sengaja menulis berkenaan tajuk ini sempena musim pilihanraya umum yang telah bermula dengan pembubaran parlimen pada 13 Februari yang lepas. Namun saya tidak berminat untuk menyentuh secara langsung pentas politik tanahair, tetapi hanya melontarkan beberapa pandangan dari sudut asas sahaja.

Pemerhatian umum saya menunjukkan orang kebanyakan memahami politik dalam bentuk parti samada pada pihak pemerintah atau pembangkang. Pemahaman seperti ini amat sempit dan tidak mengembangkan daya pemikiran. Dari segi bahasa, salah satu definisi politik ialah kepelbagaian taktik atau startegi. Definisi ini adalah hasil gabungan dua perkataan iaitu ‘poli’ yang bermaksud banyak atau pelbagai dan suku kata ‘tik’ adalah singkatan bagi taktik. Saya minta maaf kerana tidak menyatakan sumber rujukan bagi definisi ini, anda boleh rujuk kamus dewan edisi ketiga.

Dalam bahasa Arab, tiada istilah politik tetapi wujud istilah siasah (siyasah). Definisi siyasah daripada wikipedia di sini. Mungkin terdapat di kalangan kita yang memahami bahawa siyasah dan politik adalah sama. Saya tidak berani membenarkannya, tetapi kefahaman saya menyatakan bahawa ianya berbeza dari segi skop. Walaupun kefahaman terhadap definisi juga penting, namun intipati kepada siyasah atau politik tersebut lebih penting, dan ingin saya lontarkan di sini.

Ramai juga di kalangan kita yang bersetuju dengan konsep pemisahan antara pemerintahan dengan agama, mengasingkan urusan dunia dengan urusan akhirat. Konsep ini yang telah sebati dengan masyarakat Eropah dan Barat dikenali sebagai sekularisme. Sekularisme mula berkembang di Eropah setelah revolusi rakyat tercetus akibat rasa tidak puas hati kerana kongkongan dan kawalan yang dominan daripada pihak gereja terhadap pemerintah yang menyekat perkembangan tamadun mereka. Kesan daripada sekularisme dapat dilihat pada hari ini di mana ramai rakyat Eropah yang penuh dengan material tetapi jiwa kosong.

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February 13, 2008

Tanggungjawab muslim

Filed under: General,Religious — wan muhamad azmi mamat @ 4:12 pm

Tanggungjawab muslim

Tanggungjawab muslim sebenarnya telah digariskan dalam oleh Allah Taala dalam sepoting ayat dan kemudian diulangi beberapa kali pada ayat-ayat yang lain dalam al-Quran. Ayat yang menggariskan peranan umat Islam dalam kehidupan ini ialah firman Allah Taala:

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Wahai orang-orang yang beriman, rukuklah serta sujudlah (mengerjakan solat), dan beribadatlah kepada Tuhan kamu (dengan mentauhidkan-Nya), serta kerjakanlah amal-amal kebajikan; supaya kamu berjaya (di dunia dan di akhirat). Dan berjihadlah kamu pada jalan Allah dengan jihad yang sebenar-benarnya, Dial ah yang memilih kamu (untuk mengerjakan suruhan agama-Nya); dan Dia tidak menjadikan kamu menanggung sesuatu keberatan dan susah payah dalam perkara agama, agama bapa kamu Ibrahim. Dia menamakan kamu: “Orang-orang Islam” semenjak dahulu dan dalam (al-Quran) ini, supaya Rasulullah (Muhammad) menjadi saksi yang menerangkan kebenaran perbuatan kamu, dan supaya kamu pula layak menjadi orang-orang yang member keterangan kepada umat manusia (tentang yang benar dan yang salah). Oleh itu, dirikanlah solat, dan berilah zakat, serta berpegang teguhlah kamu kepada Allah! Dialah Pelindung kamu. Maka (Allah yang demikian sifatnya) Dialah sahaja sebaik-baik Pelindung dan sebaik-baik Pemberi pertolongan. (al-Hajj: 77-78)

Ungkapan yang cukup jelas, tiada kekeliruan dan tiada kekaburan. Demi Allah, ungkapan ini amat indah dan menarik. Apakah umat Islam tidak pernah mendengarnya atau mereka pernah mendengarnya tetapi hati mereka terkunci? Oleh kerana itu mereka tidak pernah menyedarinya?

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February 10, 2008

Supersonic jet could slash flying times

Filed under: General,Technology — wan muhamad azmi mamat @ 12:48 pm

An international team developing a new type of supersonic jet that would allow air travel at more than eight times the speed of sound said today that a test flight appeared to have succeeded.

A prototype of the scramjet, which uses the rush of oxygen in the air at high speeds to ignite hydrogen fuel, was blasted into the upper atmosphere on a rocket and allowed to plunge back to earth in the south Australian desert.

Researchers said they would have to wait a couple of weeks to marshal all the data before giving an authoritative assessment but the project leader, Dr Allan Paull of the University of Queensland, said: “It was at least a 95% success.”

Read more and see video here.

February 1, 2008

Switch to Linux

Filed under: Open Source — wan muhamad azmi mamat @ 5:54 pm

tuxmedium.jpg

Have you ever see the picture above? Yes, it’s a penguin! But it’s not a regular penguin, it is a logo for Linux identification. Linux developer call it as Tux. For peoples who are familiar with computing and software environment, they should know about Linux even though they not use it. But for those people who are not in this area, and for those whose playing with computer once a month, i don’t think they know about it unless they read something or heard from someone.

What is Linux? And what the relationship between Linux and penguin? Linux is an operating system (OS). For example, Windows is the OS that familiar with Malaysian. So what the different between Linux and Windows? What are the features to be announced about Linux here?

Linux is an open source OS. Open source? Open source means users can use, modify and distribute it. And most of open source software is free! Yes, FREE!!! User can simply download it through an internet. Linux is a UNIX based OS. For those who are familiar with OS, they know and fully accept that UNIX is the most stable OS. About the penguin, i even don’t know and does not found it yet.

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During one of the conference i used to attended at Petaling Jaya, the guy from Bogota, Colombia said that he really shocked because he saw all Malaysian using Windows. He was presenting his paper on security system development for military department of Colombia said that most of the computer user at his place is using Linux.

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