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Microsoft Mishaps and More!

That's Gotta Byte!

The best-laid plans of mice and

Microsoft

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often go awry! As the

Chicago Sun-Times

so aptly puts it, "Windows 98 didn't take Microsoft Chairman Bill Gates where he wanted to go Monday -- it crashed while 4,000 amused techies watched at McCormick Place."

The

Los Angeles Times

reports that Microsoft will open its first retail outlet in

Sony's

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. Not to put too fine a point on this, but these two guys aren't the best at accomplishing what they set out to do. In the

Washington Post

.

Because There Is No Monopoly on Knowledge...

Help support the

American Library Association

and be the first to get what is sure to be the hottest office accessory this year! Bill Gates reads

The Old Man and the Sea

for the

American Library Association

.

In Other News

The

Boston Globe

reports that it's been a lean year for

Interneuron Pharmaceuticals

(IPIC)

after its controversial weight-loss drug

Redux

had to be withdrawn from the market. Now, it's halted its bid for approval of

CerAxon

.

"French Prime Minister

Lionel Jospin

yesterday reasserted French claims to the most important job in Europe, the presidency of the

European Central Bank

, and threatened to use his veto in Brussels next month if he is thwarted." In the

Telegraph

.

The

Houston Chronicle

reports that even though oil prices are near the bottom of the barrel, oil-field service companies

TheStreet Recommends

Western Atlas

(WAI)

,

EVI

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,

Smith International

and

Schlumberger

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are all floating near the top.

Fund management group

Franklin Resources

has bought an 11.18% stake in

SCMP

(Holdings), making it the company's second-largest shareholder after

Kerry Media

. In the

South China Morning Post

.

The

Globe and Mail

reports that while Bill James has rescued some of Canada's largest mining ventures from disaster, his talents are really being put to the test by

Inmet Mining

. Shareholders are pushing him "to reconsider his bold strategy to revive the ailing company with the $2.5 billion (U.S.) Antamina copper and zinc project in Peru."

Hoping to increase competition from California schools,

Intel

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will sponsor the

Science Talent Search

, a prestigious contest for high school students that had operated under the auspices of the

Westinghouse Foundation

for 57 years. In the

San Jose Mercury News

.

Titanic Takes a Nose Dive

What does it take to sink the Titanic? A Full Monty. The

South China Morning Post

reports

The Full Monty

, Britain's highest-grossing movie ever, scooped best film at the

British Academy of Film and Television Arts

awards.

Titanic

claimed only one prize.