Tag: Xerox

Xerox spin-off opposed by shareholder

One of Xerox’s  largest shareholders has sued the photocopy maker over its spin off plans.

For those who came in late, Xeros wants to spin off its document outsourcing business into a new publicly traded company.

Darwin Deason sued Xerox  in a US District Court over its plans to create a new company called Conduent. Xerox said in a Thursday statement that Deason’s lawsuit was meritless and the company would seek its dismissal.

The Conduent business includes the operations of Dallas-based Affiliated Computer Services Inc, the company that Deason founded and that was acquired by Xerox for $6.4 billion in 2010.

Xerox announced the split in January and also said at the time that activist investor Carl Icahn would get three Conduent board seats after the spin-off. Icahn disclosed his stake last November. Icahn Associates Corp owns 9.77 percent of Xerox and is the company’s largest shareholder, according to Thomson Reuters data.

Deason owns 6.1 percent of Xerox stock and is the company’s largest individual investor and fourth-largest overall, according to Thomson Reuters data.

Deason’s complaint said he obtained preferred convertible stock in Xerox as part of the ACS deal, and that stock will now be marooned in the legacy business after it spins off Conduent, which Deason said was the faster growing business.

Deason asked the court to block the separation of the Conduent business and to declare that depriving him of his right to receive a convertible stake in Conduent violated Xerox’s certificate of incorporation.


Xerox gets a new head

copycatXerox has appointed Jeff Jacobson, the president of its technology unit as its new CEO after the company splits its business process outsourcing unit into a separate, publicly listed entity.

Jacobson, 56, joined Xerox in 2012 and he was appointed the president of the technology business, which includes the company’s hardware and software offerings, in July 2014.

Xerox will house the company’s legacy printer business. Its business process outsourcing operations will be held under “Conduent”, which will be led by Ashok Vemuri.

Xerox, which announced the split in January, said its current CEO Ursula Burns would become the chairman of the printer company after the separation is completed at the end of 2016.

Apple squashes “right to repair” bill

Details of Man working with electrial components

Details of Man working with electrial components

Extensive lobbying from Apple has managed to save its users from a bill which would have meant they could have helped save the planet by repairing their own gear.

The New York state legislation that would have required manufacturers to provide information about how to repair devices like the iPhone so they could be fixed locally and kept going long after Apple believed they should be scrapped.

But the bill mysteriously failed to get a vote, ending any chance of passage this legislative session. Similar measures have met the same fate in Minnesota, Nebraska, Massachusetts and New York.

It is a quaint way that US lobby groups keep their steel-capped boots on the throats of democracy by gumming up the proceedings.

New York State Senator Phil Boyle (R) who sponsored the bill was disappointed that it was not brought to the floor.

Gordon-Byrne said lobbyists from IBM, Apple, Xerox and Cisco were particularly active in working against the legislation.

Right to repair laws would protect consumers and help the environment by insuring that devices last longer, thus reducing electronics waste. If you or a business can affordably repair a broken device, you may have less incentive to buy a new one, the logic goes.

The Corporate oligarchs who have rule the US since the country revolted against its lawful constitutional monarch, oppose right to repair legislation because it would relax their total control over their products.

Consumer Technology Association once claimed that anyone posing as a repair shop to reverse-engineer such a device to create counterfeit devices.

New Yorkers will have to wait until next year before right to repair legislation has another chance.


Printer and copier trade slump guts Xerox

Images/Getty Images)Xerox reported a 4.2 percent fall in quarterly revenue due to lower sales of printers and copiers as the company frantically tries to restructure itself out of trouble.

The outfit  said it expects to incur about $100 million in restructuring costs in the second quarter as it splits into two companies, one holding its printer operations, and the other its business process outsourcing unit, which offers business process outsourcing and document outsourcing.

Chief Executive Ursula Burns said that Xerox will appoint its top staff by the middle of the year.

Xerox said revenue from its document technology business, which includes sales of printers and copiers, fell 10 percent to $1.6 billion in the quarter.

Sales of printers and copiers, its mainstay for over half a century, have fallen for more than four years.

Net income attributable to the company fell to $34 million in the first quarter ended March 31, from $225 million last year.

Revenue fell to $4.28 billion from $4.47 billion, compared to analysts’ estimate of $4.24 billion.

About the only thing that Xerox can be happy about is that rival printer makers are also suffering.  Lexmark International has agreed to be taken private by a group of investors led by China-based Apex Technology Co and PAG Asia Capital in a deal valued at $3.6 billion net of cash.

There’s no such thing as the paperless office

Zortrax Inventure 3D printerBack in the 1970s, pundits were predicting that we’d be well into the sphere of the paperless office by the 21st century. Our offices are still stacked with papers and the print market – especially the production print market, appears to be buoyant.

Well, according to a survey from IDC, that’s far from the case. The worldwide production print market grew by 9.9 percent in the third quarter of this year.

Shipment value increased too by 5.9 percent, so the value was over $1.2 billion.

All categories in the production print market grew, with label and packaging up 15 percent and high speed inkjet shipments growing by 8.8 percent in the quarter, compared to the previous quarter. Canon, Ricoh and HP rule the roost in this sector.

The top five vendors in the quarter were Xerox, HP, Ricoh, Konica and Canon.

Amy Chado, research manager at IDC, said: “High speed inkjet experienced a tremendous rebound in the third quarter, with system shipments growing 110 percent from the previous quarter and nine percent annually.”

Serious fault means Xerox copiers make stuff up

Scanners in the Xerox WorkCentre line have started randomly altering numbers in the pages in which they are scanned.

The error was found by D Kriesel who wrote in his blog that this was not an OCR problem, just that the printer didn’t like the numbers it was given and put something else in.

Kriesel stopped short of blaming elves, but it was clear that was what he meant.

The scanned images look correct at first glance, even though numbers may actually be incorrect. The problem could cause incorrect invoices, dodgy construction plans, incorrect metering of medicine and tennis elbow.

The copiers in question are the common Xerox WorkCentres, and Xerox seemed to be unaware of the problem until Kriesel discovered it.

Different WorkCentre models appear to be affected although so far the problem was tested on the Xerox WorkCentre 7535 and 7556. The current software release, as installed by Xerox support, did not solve the problem and probably existed when Adam wore shorts.

Kriesel said that the error has been confirmed by a Xerox rental firm in the meantime, and Xerox is investigating.

He pointed out that anyone who has been using a Xerox work centre needs to worry about the documents they have scanned over the last years.

He said that Xerox seems eager to solve the problem, and because of the possible dangers an immediate publication of the issue is advisable.

A Xerox spokesperson says: “As I’m sure you’re aware, technically Xerox does not make photocopiers rather multifunctional devices for scanning, photocopying, printing and faxing.

“Therefore the vast majority of Xerox customers are unlikely to be affected by this issue. It will only occur if the user selects the scanning function on the user device or the user changes two separate settings on the scan ,compression level and image quality”.

Xerox jumps on the cloud for SMEs

Xerox is yet another company to roll out a cloud service that includes support for IBM i workloads but this time it is targeting SMEs.

There are lots of SMEs who want to run IBM i, AIX, Windows, and Linux applications on a cloud and Xerox thinks that it is the company for the job.

IBM based SMEs are seen as a big market for Xerox, which is better known as a printer maker, but since it bought ACS two years ago it is pressing itself into the cloud.

It appears that Xerox is tapping into ACS’ big server expertise and its multiple North American data centres to run Xerox Cloud Services.

What Xerox is doing, which is slightly different from the rest of the cloud pack, is run IBM i, Windows, AIX, or Linux on a pay by month basis. This makes clouds more attractive to SMEs who do not want to spend an arm and a leg.

Rob Schilperoort, vice president of product management for Xerox Cloud services, told IT Jungle that it means punters can turn up and turn down capacity as they need it. All the company would have to do is pay for the use of that equipment as they need it. They can also buy operating system management and the application and data management, but those are optional items.

Xerox has six data centres, with a seventh to come online soon.

Xerox’s midrange customers pay primarily by the amount of RAM they are running. This starts at 4 GB of RAM up to 2 TB. Any disc-based storage for customer application data is charged at a standard industry rate, Schilperoort says.

Practically this means that an SME can run as many IBM i LPARs or AIX images as they want across their memory allocation. 

PARC wants to make money

Famous for not making money out of its research, Xerox PARC say that it has a cunning plan to stimulate inovation by making pots of it.

Palo Alto Research Center (PARC) is in the unfortunate position of everyone thinking that Steve Jobs invented the mouse because it failed to commercialise its brilliant ideas.

Xerox did commercialise PARC’s laser printing, Ethernet networking, the PDF file format, and electronic paper were made famous by others.

Now, according to Technology Review, PARC is going to change its strategy and make money like the rest of the technology industry.

Last month, a Norwegian company called Thinfilm Electronics and PARC showed off plastic film that combined printed transistors and printed digital memory.

Lawrence Lee, PARC’s director of strategy said that advances in printing transistors came at around the same time the lab was being reorganised, making the idea a key proving ground for the new money making plan. .

PARC at first hoped to develop organic electronic displays, a potentially huge market, but the technology proved difficult to manufacture, and it fell far short of silicon-based displays in performance.

In the old days, PARC would have given up and waited for someone else to pick up the idea, particularly as Xerox could not see the point of pushing inventions which were not copier related.

But now PARC has started shipping the technology to manufacturers, telling them that printed transistors could also provide very cheap, flexible sensors and computer logic for packaging, and toys.

While manufacturers liked the idea they wanted to see a benchtop experiment. So PARC got together with Thinfilm, which was already making printed memory. The resulting prototype circuit was the first to combine both printed transistors and memory. 

Microsoft is the most ethical company in the known cosmos

Further proof that the fabric of the universe has been fundamentally changed since CERN was switched on has appeared.

Microsoft is among the world’s most ethical companies, according to a list put together by the Ethisphere Institute in New York.

There are 110 companies in the Ethisphere list, including Microsoft and 35 other newcomers. Getting on the list is decided by whether or not companies have leading ethics and compliance programmes, particularly compared to their industry peers.

More than 26 companies dropped off from the 2010 list because of litigation and ethics violations, as well as increased competition from within their industry.

Ethisphere publish the list to prove that it pays to be ethical. Those that land on the do-good list have performed better than the S&P 500.

However Starbucks also is on this year’s list probably for providing TechEye with much needed wi-fi back up in times of crisis.

Other tech outfits which made the list were Adobe, Google, Cisco, Symantic, Terradata, Ricoh,T-Mobile, Vodafone and Xerox.

Missing from the list are Oracle, HP, Intel, IBM, and Apple. Oracle was there in 2009 and seems to have slipped off. Oddly HP was also there the year before, despite being involved with snooping on hacks and the time. Other exits from the 2009 list include Intel and Freescale. Apple never was on the list.

If we had asked Apple about ethics it would have told us about its plans to build an Apple store in Chelmsford, so we didn’t bother.

Apple, Adobe, SAP, IBM, HP, others sued over object orientation

A case started in the court of the Eastern District of Texas Marshall Division accusing a number of companies of breaching a patent relating to object orientation.

Ganas sued Sabre, SAP, SAS, Scottrade, TD Ameritrade, the Charles Schwab Corporation, Tivo, Unicoi Systems, Xerox, Adobe, Apple, AOL, Axibase, Directv, Dish DBS Corporation, E Trade Securities, Exinda Networks, Fidelity Brokerage Services, Firsttrade Securities, Hewlett Packard, Icontrol, IBM and JP Morgan Chase of appropriating US patent 7,136,913, and breaching other patents.

That patent is called Object oriented communication among platform independent systems across a firewall over the internet using HTTP-SOAP.

They’re also accused of breaching other patents Ganas owns – US patent number 7,325,053 – which is related technology, as well as US patent number 7,734,756 and patent number 7,007,094 called Object oriented communications system over the internet.

Ganas wants a jury to decide in its favour and damages, costs, expenses, post-judgement interest and enhanced damages as a result of this alleged breach.