HP Dropping the iPod -- Only one month after adding the iPod shuffle to its product lineup, Hewlett-Packard reportedly plans to stop reselling Apple's iPod digital music players by the end of September 2005. The reselling arrangement between Apple and HP was launched in January 2004 to much fanfare and, at the time, seemed like a good way for Apple to get the not-yet utterly iconic digital music player into new retail and marketing channels. But that's not quite how things worked out: HP apparently never made much money selling iPods, and its versions often fell behind Apple's product offerings and were sold as discounted also-rans. HP's portion of the iPod phenomenon reportedly amounted to less than 5 percent of iPod units sold. And HP has bigger problems to solve: it's currently in the process of jettisoning about 10 percent of its workforce in order to make its bottom line roughly $2 billion fatter. [GD]
Shorten URLs in TextExpander
If your Twitter client doesn't automatically shorten URLs for you, you can use TextExpander to shrink those long links to tweetable lengths. First, add the Internet Productivity group by choosing File > Add Predefined Group > Internet Productivity Snippets. Then, to shorten a URL using a service like TinyURL, copy the destination URL to the clipboard, and type the abbreviation
/tinyurl to insert the shortened URL at the insertion point.