Skype directory is here… Digilantes to the rescue… Global entrepreneurship driven by developing women… Vista competition strong

Skype gets into the business directory business

Skype is moving further into the markets of other online services reports ITWire. It has now introduced SkypeFind, a facility that will create a global online business directory built entirely from user contributions, totally unsupervised by Skype.

The facility is a feature, in beta, of the latest version of Skype for Windows (3.1), which also includes the new Skype Prime. It aims to be a community generated business guide.

SkypeFind lets users rate, review and log businesses no matter where they live. Skype claims that in just three weeks since launch the beta version of SkypeFind has attracted more than 4500 listings in more than 124 countries. Skype expects there to be over one million listings by the end of 2007.

There are extensive disclaimers and warnings to users about the content they post, but you have to wonder whether this will protect the company from liability.


Digilantes to the rescue

It is enough to restore your faith in humanity. As the number of internet scammers and hackers grows, a band of altruistic internet users who spend their free time uncovering scams and letting innocent victims know has emerged. They are known as digilantes and their motives vary from loneliness to revenge to guilt, reports The Australian Financial Review.

If you get a call from one with a warning: don’t hang up. They could save you a lot of money.


Women lead in developing nations

A third of the world’s entrepreneurial activity is created by women, according to a new survey reported in

Women in developing countries are more than twice as likely to be involved in new business that those in the developed world, the survey (by Babson College and the London Business School) of more than 150,000 entrepreneurs in 40 regions around the world found.

Only 1% of Belgian women and 2.3% of Swedish women were involved in early stage businesses, the study found, well behind women in Russia (39.9%) and the Philippines (22.5%).

But while women in poorer nations lead their richer nation counterparts in becoming entrepreneurs, researchers found they were less likely to be able to make the transition to established business success. The study’s authors believe the difference in success rates is attributable to unequal access to education.


Free software boom

Downloads of Sun Microsystems free OpenOffice software — in direct competition with Microsoft’s Office operating systems — have continued to climb since the launch of the new Vista version, reports The Australian Financial Review.

Sun reports that downloads of its OpenOffice software have increased by 5.8 million since Vista’s release. By February 2007 almost 83 million copies of OpenOffice had been downloaded. Sun, also which advises CIOs about how to migrate away from Windows, makes its profits from high margins on computer services.



Daylight Saving – a false economy

Enjoy it while it lasts. With the end of daylight savings looming for most states, questions are being asked about how environmentally friendly daylight savings actually is.

While we turn the lights on later, the evening use of electricity in the evenings, is more than offset by increased use in the mornings, according to a study by Berkeley University in California.


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