Katherine NoyesSenior U.S. Correspondent, IDG News Service

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Katherine Noyes has been an ardent geek ever since she first conquered Pyramid of Doom on an ancient TRS-80. Today she covers enterprise software in all its forms, with an emphasis on cloud computing, big data, analytics and artificial intelligence.

Adware security

Adware turns a tidy profit for those who sneak it into downloads

If you've ever downloaded software, chances are you've experienced an all-too-common surprise: ads or other unwanted programs that tagged along for the ride, only to pop up on your PC uninvited. Turns out there's a highly lucrative global industry making it happen, with "layers of deniability" to protect those involved.

GCHQ

UK government hit with new complaint about hacking abroad

A group of privacy advocates and internet providers has filed a new challenge to the UK government's use of bulk hacking abroad.

Microsoft Skype Spock

This new Skype bot lets you chat with Spock

Microsoft has made no secret of its grand plans for chat bots, and this week it rolled out five new ones for Skype. Surely the most fun is "Spock," a bot that promises to help you "learn the ways of Vulcan logic."

Dropbox Paper

Dropbox Paper, now in open beta, lets teams collaborate in the cloud

Ten months after Dropbox first unveiled Paper, the collaborative writing tool entered open beta on Wednesday and is getting mobile versions for iOS and Android.

LibreOffice

In pictures: Free, fantastic Office rival LibreOffice 5.2 beefs up its pro features

LibreOffice 5.2 turns its attention towards business.

150914 salesforce dreamforce 2

Why Salesforce just bought this ex-Facebook CTO’s startup

Hard on the heels of its Demandware acquisition in June, Salesforce on Monday confirmed it is acquiring cloud collaboration software maker Quip.

Cloud

Four US firms rule the world's cloud infrastructure

There are plenty of companies vying for a piece of the worldwide cloud infrastructure market, but the top four -- all in the U.S. -- currently dominate by such a wide margin as to effectively leave their competitors in the dust.

ibm jim comfort cto cloud

IBM's Cloud CTO: 'We're in this game to win'

An industry focus is one of the key factors IBM is betting will set it apart from cloud competitors including Google, Microsoft and Amazon Web Services.

netsuite

Oracle and NetSuite: Longtime 'sweethearts' united at last

Oracle's purchase of NetSuite may be the most anticipated acquisition in the history of enterprise software.

google adwords

Google taps AI to help you bid for digital ads

Real-time bidding is an aspect of digital marketing that can seem overly complex for the average bear, so it was only a matter of time before AI entered the picture.

Moscow Institute of Physics and Technology

Quantum computing moves beyond 1s and 0s to make them easier to build

Quantum computers may promise a giant leap forward in performance and efficiency, but none of that can happen until we figure out a practical way to build them. The answer? Objects with more than two quantum states.

HTTP Internet website

For SEO, links are even more important than you think

It's a rare business today that doesn't take at least some steps to optimize its website for search-engine rankings, but how best to do that remains an open question. A new study published Wednesday suggests that inbound links are even more critical than you may think.

Macy's store California

IBM's Watson AI just landed a new job: helping Macy's shoppers

On Wednesday, retail brand Macy's announced that it's testing out a new mobile service that lets in-store shoppers ask Watson for help.

Big Data analytics machine learning

Dark data? Not if Teradata and Nuix can help it

Big data may promise a world of new insight, but if it can't be analyzed, you can kiss that potential goodbye. Enter Teradata and Nuix, which on Tuesday teamed up to bring so-called "dark data" to light.

fbi seal

The FBI is using outdated IT to deliberately foil FOIA requests, lawsuit alleges

The FBI is using antiquated computer systems to deliberately foil requests made under the U.S. Freedom of Information Act, a new lawsuit alleges.