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


We live in a graphical world, where people judge us by the fonts we use and the colour combinations on our web pages. Post-industrial culture demands that design is everything, with careful sculptured looks encasing the mass-produced gubbins that fill our homes and workplaces.

September 5, 2010 by Simon Bisson and Mary Branscombe


2010: The Year We Make (Email) Contact

It's been an interesting few days here in our office, as I took the opportunity of the end-of-August lull to do some major network reconfiguration and upgrades.

September 2, 2010 by Simon Bisson and Mary Branscombe


Over-sharing on social networks; do we care more about it when it's Google?

Why do we give Facebook less hassle for proxy sharing in Place than we gave Google for Buzz?I was furious about Buzz on a personal level; it did the initial turn-itself-on thing on a Gmail account I don't want to have share anything with anyone and I had the emotional response to having the system interfere in my personal life.

August 23, 2010 by Simon Bisson and Mary Branscombe


Smart, but not in a business suit.

Earlier this week I suggested that the name "smartphone" seriously underestimated the capabilities of today's pocket computers. The latest ARM-based mobile processors (especially thise with GPU support, like Nvidia's Tegra and Qualcomm's Snapdragon) have plenty of horse power to handle what just a few years back were complex computational problems.

August 21, 2010 by Simon Bisson and Mary Branscombe

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Why all that crapware will kill the PC

Turn on a brand new PC - like I did for my mother-in-law last weekend - and the first thing I do is close a popup from a security app. Then I close another popup from the same app.

August 13, 2010 by Simon Bisson and Mary Branscombe


Microsoft's data-driven black hole

Microsoft has the telemetry religion; the development of IE 9, like Windows 7 and Office before it, is driven by data about what people actually do. In IE 9's case, it's things like a list of the 7,000 programming APIs that are in use on the most popular Web sites (the most popular JavaScript API, incidentally, used in 91% of them extracts a substring from a string).

August 11, 2010 by Simon Bisson and Mary Branscombe


Browse Tomorrow, Today.

You can't criticise Microsoft for not having a sense of humour. The latest set of demo web applications that have arrived with the release of Internet Explorer 9 Platform Preview 4 stress your browser while letting you de-stress with a good laugh.

August 4, 2010 by Simon Bisson and Mary Branscombe


Privacy: what Windows Live knows about your friends

The way that Windows Live lets you control your privacy online is a model other social networks and aggregators would do well to follow. You can easily make things private, shared with just close friends, open to friends of friends or public to the world and you don't feel like you'll have to write your own social network to do it.

August 2, 2010 by Simon Bisson and Mary Branscombe