Seven Predictions for 2008: Page 2

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5) The “we’re waiting for Vista SP1” excuse will be replaced by “we’re waiting for Windows 7.”

I don’t think anyone seriously believes SP1 will fix all the concerns and gripes people have about making the switch from XP to Vista. Overall, the problem with encouraging XP users to nuke their install and enjoy all that Aero goodness comes down to apathy arising from chronic disappointment. This you don’t fix with a service pack!

I’ll bet you a screenful of random ASCII characters that this time next year Microsoft will still be trying to figure out why people don’t like Vista, only the pressure will be off because the media will be starting to rev the engine on the Windows 7 machine.

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6) AMD will spend another year playing catch-up with Intel.

There was a time when nearly all my PCs ran on AMD processors. However, in recent years AMD has suffered a battering at the hands of Intel and have gone from supplying processors that all hardcore enthusiasts and overclockers wanted to own to being hammered in almost every category of desktop processor. Even the latest Phenom processors have turned out to be pure marketing hyperbole: real-world benchmarking has shown them to be a crippling disappointment compared to what Intel has to offer.

This might make me sound like an Intel fan, but I’m not. Without serious competition from AMD, Intel runs the risk of stagnating, which would mean a return to those 486 days when progress was made at a glacial pace.

7) You think spam’s bad now? You ain’t seen nothin’ yet!

I’m coming to the conclusion there’s little that can be done to stop spam. Sure, Microsoft could be doing more to combat botnets, and ISPs could be making it more difficult for those caught up in botnets to flood the net with vast volumes of email, but even these measures would not turn off the spam faucet for good. I’m bracing myself for the spam load to increase significantly over the next 12 months and I’d encourage everyone to spend some time thinking about how they can give less eyeball time to organized criminals and aggressive marketers pushing bogus financial deals and strange pharmaceuticals which promise effects on the human body that belong in sci-fi rather than the realms of medicine.

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