When Dartmouth College launched the Basic language 50 years ago, it enabled ordinary users to write code. Millions did. But we've gone backwards since then, and most users now seem unable or unwilling to create so much as a simple macro
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....
Vic Gundotra's resignation has cast doubt on the future of Google Plus, the social networking site he launched in 2011. But despite forecasts of doom, the survival of Orkut suggests Google won't close it down.
Firefox is the only major browser that is written to serve users and the open web, and it's now more than a match for Google Chrome. And the new Australis version, due later this month, could be a good time to make the switch
The end of Windows XP support was almost as hyped as the Y2K bug, but it's hard to see any rational reasons why so many organisations stuck with an antique operating system long past its use-by date
Lookback lets developers do usability testing on iOS apps while users are doing real work, or travelling, rather than in a laboratory setting. And the Swedish start-up now has $2.2 million in seed funding to take it further
Malwarebytes Anti-Malware Premium has introduced heuristics-based detection designed to identify malicious software based on behavior instead of on virus signatures, and "will support XP users for life".
The web's 25th birthday has been celebrated around the web, but Tim Berners-Lee has used it to start the Web We Want project to develop a Magna Carta or "bill of rights" to protect users' freedom of speech and freedom from surveillance
The open web faces a serious challenge as smartphone users move to closed apps, but Dr Jeff Jaffe, CEO of the W3C, explains how they're meeting that challenge and expanding the web into new areas
Optical discs have been left behind by the rapid growth in storage requirements, but Archival Discs may get Sony and Panasonic back in the game with 300GB discs next year and 1TB on the way.
"Infinite scrolling" is fashionable but, as usually implemented, it breaks important web features and makes things harder to find, even for Google. But Google has a demo that might help...
In the battle of the cloud giants, Microsoft's Azure is matching Amazon, at least on its own turf: Windows hosting.
Today's Kantar's Worldpanel ComTech report shows Windows Phone has made gains but Android still dominates the European market. "The real battle now is among the Android manufacturers," it says.
Smartphone users who are worried about the increased use of location tracking in airports, malls etc can register their phones on the Smart Store Privacy website, where many of the leading tracking companies will enable them to opt out.
The Year of Code is supposed to teach all the UK's school children to code, but even if you support this fashionable American idea, this doesn't seem to be a useful way to do it
If you paste text from Microsoft Word into an email, you may not see what the recipient will see, and this includes hidden text. Microsoft ought to fix this in Outlook.com. Until it does, the solution is 'Inspect Document', which also lets you remove hidden personal information.
The best of ZDNet, delivered
- 1 Now is the time to switch back to Firefox
- 2 Google Plus: three years old and still failing as a social network
- 3 Google tries to save the web from the curse of 'infinite scrolling'
- 4 Google will fix the battery-eating 'bug' in its Chrome browser
- 5 Petition about Apple MacBook Pro failures passes 10,000 signatures