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Jobs & Co. sued again; Mac web share up; iTunes K-12 launches

Some of Apple's top executives, including Steve Jobs, have once again been accused of bad faith in backdating company shares. Simultaneously, Mac web share is nearing eight percent in one report, K-12 educational material has reached iTunes U, and Microsoft has shipped the second edition of Remote Desktop Connection for Mac.

Apple faces backdating scandal once again

Some of Apple's key senior officials are once again being taken to task for alleged stock manipulation.

Although Apple has successfully had its most high-profile case dismissed last year after a combination of internally-run and US Securities and Exchange Commission investigations, Apple shareholders Kenneth Mahoney and Martin Vogel late last week filed a new lawsuit that charges co-founder Steve Jobs, executives, and board members with damaging the company's share value through backdating, triggering a 14 percent drop in the company's stock value during 2006 that wiped out about $7 billion of Apple's worth on the market in just two weeks.

By knowingly dating stock options for executives to dates that weren't revealed to shareholders and falsifying records, the Apple officials were aware of fraud and what the manipulation could do to other shareholders, according to the claim.

While Apple ultimately adjusted its income to address the questionable actions, the move is said in the lawsuit to have given Jobs "instant paper profit" of more than $83.8 million in 2000, and $20.3 million in 2001, that wasn't properly accounted for.

In addition to Apple's CEO, the suit also brings further action against former chief finance officer Fred Anderson and general counsel Nancy Heinen, both of whom were directly blamed for the irregularities that prompted the earlier US government action.

The long-serving board members accused in the suit include Intuit chief William Campbell, J. Crew head Millard Drexler, Genentech's Arthur Levinson, and Harwinton Capital's Jerry York.

Mac web share seen nearing 8 percent

Continuning its upward climb, Mac share on the web is now at 7.94 percent, according to June 2008 results from Net Applications.

The group's over 40,000 tracked websites showed Mac OS X gaining a full tenth of a percentage point from month to month while Windows declined two tenths to 90.89 percent of all visitors. A significant gain by Linux from 0.68 to an even 0.8 percent of all web views is also credited with the shift.

iPhone web share remains flat at 0.16 but is still at an all-time high, and is the most successful mobile or console operating system in the rankings.

K-12 school material reaches iTunes U

Previously reserved just for college and university material, iTunes U is now opening its doors to content suitable for students between kindergarten and grade 12 as well as their parents and teachers.

Like the post-secondary material, the iTunes material for K-12 includes audio and video podcasts as well as text that gives students additional course material and adults more information about school programs.

The initial launch lineup includents content from school departments in Arizona, Florida, Maine, Michigan, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Utah.

Microsoft ships Remote Desktop Connection Client 2

Microsoft on Wednesday released Remote Desktop Connection Client 2, its long-awaited update to its utility for connecting to and controlling Windows PCs.

The new version is more Mac-like and includes several crucial additions, including the ability to reach multiple Windows systems at the same time, to create custom shortcuts for common actions, and to print content from the Windows system through the Mac's existing printer management interface.

The 7.7MB download is free and requires an Intel or PowerPC Mac running Mac OS X 10.2.8 or later with 128MB of RAM.