Thousands of customers, developers and investors are set to convene in San Francisco for Apple's Worldwide Developers' Conference, hoping to catch a glimpse of its latest high-tech wonders.
But while Apple made waves with its unveiling of the 3G iPhone at last year's event, this year's takes place against a more uncertain backdrop.
Steve Jobs, Apple's charismatic CEO and master showman, is still on medical leave and not due back until July. And the first credible challenger to Apple's iPhone, Palm Inc's new Pre smartphone, makes its grand debut on store shelves just two days before Apple's gala.
The other feature is what Microsoft calls SafeSearch content control technology. "If you set SafeSearch to 'strict,' you will not see any explicit text, image or video content," Nichols post continued.
Normally, that feature is set to default to not return any sexually explicit images. However, the user can easily reset the feature's permissions to turn off SafeSearch. All that SafeSearch asks is that the user click a box to attest that he or she is over 18.
"You could watch hours of porn within Bing without going to a porn site," Stanley Holditch, a marketing manager at InternetSafety.com, told InternetNews.com on Tuesday.
Microsoft responded Thursday by posting a scripting example that corporate systems managers can code into every outgoing Bing search query -- it will enforce Bing's highest restrictions, called "strict," which blocks any explicit content from being delivered to the user's PC.
"In the next couple of months we will formalize this work so that a broader range of partners, applications and tools can take advantage of this functionality more easily," Nichols' post said.