Microsoft's Internet Explorer team has kept up its tradition of sending the Mozilla team cake when they ship a new version of Firefox. Firefox 4 has just been made available, and the cake duly arrived with the usual inscription: "Congratulations on shipping!
News and comment on what's happening in the technology industry, and the direction it's heading.
Jack Schofield spent the 1970s editing photography magazines before becoming editor of an early UK computer magazine, Practical Computing. In 1983, he started writing a weekly computer column for the Guardian, and joined the staff to launch the newspaper's weekly computer supplement in 1985. This section launched the Guardian’s first website and, in 2001, its first real blog. When the printed section was dropped after 25 years and a couple of reincarnations, he felt it was a time for a change....
The University of Bath has invested £80,000 in switching its library's network of computers from AC to DC, in the attempt to reduce energy consumption. Later, the system -- which will act as a showcase for this type of project -- may run on wind or solar power, both of which generate DC rather than AC power.
People shopping for Adidas trainers may soon be able to use an in-store touch-screen interactive wall display that shows them the full range of shoes in 3-D in all available colours and sizes: the system is expected to appear in May. Those shopping for Lego can already find in-store augmented reality Digital Box displays that identify the box the customer is holding, and superimpose 3-D images of the model they will be able to build.
Microsoft's share price has bumbled along going nowhere for the past decade, while the value of Apple and Google shares has rocketed to the heights. It might therefore be a surprise to find out that Microsoft is the technology stock "most owned" by "successful value oriented 'super investors' such as Warren Buffett and Bruce Berkowitz".
Who are the "technology elite", how do you find out what they're doing, and how might you get in touch with them? Today, one answer is Twitter, which provides a socially approved form of stalking.
If you are close to Great Portland Street tube in London, you could pop across the road to One Marylebone, a former church, and look at Intel's Remastered art exhibition. According to the blurb: "With its curatorial and creative partner Jotta, Intel re-tells the stories of some of the most famous pieces of art from history, using technology to re-interpret their meaning for a contemporary audience.
Paul Graham, the founder of the Y Combinator venture capital group, has given a 10-minute interview to Bloomberg about backing startups. Towards the end, he says he's worried about another "era of monoculture" where software developers concentrate on a single platform.
Apple has been turning its product launches into "events" for decades, and this marketing strategy has been extended to include users queuing up outside its stores. In the iPad 2's case, it would be much more efficient to take pre-orders online, but Apple has decided against doing this in the US.
Microsoft is famous for spending vast amounts of money on research and development (R&D), and journalists tend to conclude that it gets little or nothing in return. I usually take the view that if Microsoft can't be bothered to correct them, it's their problem not mine….
Jason Fitzpatrick is trying to raise £1.5 million on Twitter, by getting 1.