Simon Bisson

Simon Bisson is a freelance technology journalist. He specialises in architecture and enterprise IT. He ran one of the UK's first national ISPs and moved to writing around the time of the collapse of the first dotcom boom. He still writes code.

Mary Branscombe

Mary Branscombe is a freelance tech journalist. Mary has been a technology writer for nearly two decades, covering everything from early versions of Windows and Office to the first smartphones, the arrival of the web and most things inbetween.

Latest Posts

Run any app in Windows 8 straight from the Start screen

You don't need the Run dialog, the pinned taskbar icons or even live tiles in the Windows 8 Start screen; you just need to start typing.Press the Start button, start typing the name of the app you want, or the file you want, or the control panel setting, and a list of matches appears on the Start screen (app first, but you can click Documents and Settings in the filter on the right - or choose any of the apps that have a search contract in the list to see specialised results).

September 22, 2011 by Simon Bisson and Mary Branscombe

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IE10 is the day the Web won for apps, not browsers

Does it matter that the reason IE9 and IE10 are much better browsers than IE8, with far more standards, all accelerated by the hardware that's in all modern PCs, isn't because Microsoft wanted to make a better browser, but because Microsoft wanted to make Windows 8 the best place to run Web apps?What's left to ask for in IE10?

September 21, 2011 by Simon Bisson and Mary Branscombe


The Day The Web Won

"Resistance is futile" intoned Star Trek's Borg as they absorbed everything and everyone into their hive mind collective. That's true for the web, and one of the largest developer platforms in the world has suddenly become part of its growing collective.

September 14, 2011 by Simon Bisson and Mary Branscombe


Cloud fixes on-premise servers too

Not everyone wants to abandon on-premise servers and rush to the cloud. It's not just whether your data is secure or whether there will be an outage when you need the service most; there's the problem of bandwidth and latency - which is always going to be poorer than your local network.

September 10, 2011 by Simon Bisson and Mary Branscombe

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Outlook: Cloudy (with a chance of email)

I've spent much of the last week moving our mail from our own Exchange server, up to Microsoft's Office 365 service. It's been an interesting process, and one that threw up a couple of interesting challenges.

September 4, 2011 by Simon Bisson and Mary Branscombe


Post-PC? Or Just The Return Of Ubicomp?

I’ve been thinking a lot about the whole "post-PC" phenomenon, and have come to the conclusion that there’s no such thing.We’ve always had a continuum of devices, and a similar wide range of use cases, and a continuing evolution of form factors and device types driven by changes in the underlying silicon technologies.

August 30, 2011 by Simon Bisson and Mary Branscombe


Rumour control: Windows 8, WPF and Metro

Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery and the Windows Phone 7 version of the Metro interface should feel very flattered; we've seen the look everywhere from conference Web sites to the new Android Marketplace look (which even has the side-swipe panoramas to go with the Metro tiles) to Windows 7 skins like Newgen and Metro Home to WordPress themes.

August 26, 2011 by Simon Bisson and Mary Branscombe

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Don't be evil to your users; what of collateral damage?

Google's famous 'don't be evil' mantra was intended to be "a bit of a jab at a lot of the other companies, especially our competitors, who at the time, in our opinion, were kind of exploiting the users to some extent" according to Gmail creator Paul Buchheit, who was one of the people behind the original phrasing.

August 24, 2011 by Simon Bisson and Mary Branscombe

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Google's real problem: the smartest kids in the room

For a phenomenally successful company, Google makes a lot of mistakes. Google TV, Buzz, Wave, privacy infringements that earned the company 20 years of privacy oversight - and the whole one-trick pony thing, with 97% of Google's money coming from ads in search.

August 18, 2011 by Simon Bisson and Mary Branscombe


Google and Motorola Mobility: it's not just the phones

Listening in to the Google/Motorola Mobility financial analyst call after the announcement of Google's takeover of the mobile phone pioneer, two things stood out.The first, and the most obvious, was Google's desire to own Motorola's patent portfolio.

August 15, 2011 by Simon Bisson and Mary Branscombe

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