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One more article of note appeared today in the <i>San Francisco Chronicle</i>: <div>&nbsp;</div> "Tech ties to Russia: Silicon Valley weighs risks, opportunities"<div>&nbsp;</div> http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2006/02/07/BUG5IH3OHC1.DTL&amp;hw=russia&amp;sn=001&amp;sc=1000<div>&nbsp;</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> An excerpt:<div>&nbsp;</div> <blockquote>IBM, last week said it will provide free software in Russia to allow developers to download open-source versions of IBM codes, tutorials, software and blogs on which IBM experts provide technical advice.<div>&nbsp;</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> All told, Hanny said, IBM is spending some $1 billion a year on such outreach and educational programs in such developing markets as India, China, Brazil and Russia. Hanny said the company wants to help businesses in Russia attain what he calls "ease of use and customization'' of IBM programs.<div>&nbsp;</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> <div>&nbsp;</div> So far, it seems to be working, Hanny said. "Demand is six to eight times the rate we see in the U.S. and Western Europe. We saw double-digit growth in our revenue last year in Russia,'' he said, without disclosing dollar amounts.</blockquote>