Geek week in review

IPhone mania is finally over, thank Jobs.

IPhone mania is finally over, thank Jobs. Here are some stories you might have missed in all the fuss:

SAP zapped. German uber-software firm SAP has admitted to inappropriate downloads from Oracle's servers by its Dallas-based TomorrowNow subsidiary. Apparently SAP has been stealing material from its rival after all, despite its howling protestations of innocence. SAP declined to specify the nature of the downloads, but rumor has it the materials include photos of Larry Ellison en flagrante with the San Diego Chicken. He's always been a sucker for a nice set of drumsticks.

Take this, Jobs, and shove it. Universal Music Group won't renew its annual contract with Apple; instead it will release music to the iTunes Store whenever it feels the urge. (So don't expect any more of those glam U2 iPods any time soon.) This is apparently a slap at Steve Jobs for insisting on selling songs for a mere 99 cents and dissing DRM. Because, after all, CD sales are going so well, right? And there are so many other places where people buy digital music.... right? As usual, Universal appears to taking its marketing strategy from The Black Knight in Monty Python and the Holy Grail: Having lost all of its limbs, the company hopes to bite Apple into submission.

Watch out, granny's packing heat! AOL unveiled its new video site (#72 in a series) this past week, featuring "the best" of YouTube, TMZ.com and other viral video fests interspersed with commercials for Charmin and Kraft American Cheese. Apparently octogenarians make up a big slice of the AOL demographic. Among the top vids: "Woman Terrified of Cotton Balls", "This Granny Loves Grabbing Fannies", and "Machine Gun Granny". Meet the new AOL, lame as the old AOL.

Dead reckoning. In a memo from the grave, the former public relations officer at Roswell Air Base admitted to seeing the egg-shaped alien spacecraft that allegedly crashed outside the town of Roswell, New Mexico, in 1947. In the affadavit, written in 2002 with instructions that it only be opened after his death, Lieutenant Walter Haut also says he saw the bodies of two dead aliens hidden under sheets featuring small child-like forms and very large heads. The weirdest thing? This is one of the few press releases I actually believe.

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Robert X. Cringely

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