iPad 2, cyborg brains and augmented reality

Stories of the month – February 2011
Written by Tim Ferguson, Contributor

Stories of the month – February 2011

With the launch of the iPad 2 imminent, there was considerable speculation in February about what the second version of the device would bring to the tablet PC party.

silicon.com's Apple guru Seb Janacek pondered what features would make the grade on the iPad 2, including near-field communication and the iPhone 4's Retina Display, in Apple Talk: What to expect from the new iPad 2.

However, many industry watchers felt the iPad 2 wouldn't be too radical when it emerged, according to iPad 2: Apple's iPad follow-up to be evolution not revolution.

Find out how accurate the predictions were in Natasha Lomas' coverage of the iPad launch on 2 March and her follow-up story about the analysts' take on the new device - plus Janacek's views on the significance of Steve Jobs' appearance at the iPad 2 launch.

Unlike the iPad, it seems Apple's iPhone 4 is fairing less well in the popularity stakes, having dropped out of the UK's top five favourite smartphones. Find out which devices have usurped it, in Apple iPhone 4 toppled by HTC Desire.

Elsewhere in the mobile world, Microsoft and Nokia revealed their strategic partnership for developing smartphone technology. Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer and Nokia chief Stephen Elop explained the thinking behind the move, in Microsoft gets best of Nokia in smartphone love-in.

Chief reporter Nick Heath indulged in a spot of future-gazing when he interviewed science writer Michael Chorost, who predicts that genetic engineering and computer chips based on neural networks could see people's brains linked together in the future, in Cyborg brains: The next evolutionary step.

Meanwhile Mike Lynch, CEO of Autonomy, Europe's second-largest software company, discussed how he thinks machine-learning software based on a theorem developed by an 18th-century mathematician could fuel the shift towards augmented reality, in Augmented reality, machine learning and the cleric.

Also in February, the University of Portsmouth unveiled a supercomputer being used to investigate some of the biggest questions in the universe, including what happened after the Big Bang and the effects of dark matter. Find out more, in UK supercomputer probes dark matter and dark energy.

Returning to the world of business technology, silicon.com separated the cloud computing fact from fiction in Cloud computing: What you should and shouldn't be worried about.

And with many businesses preferring to take the private cloud route to allay cloud computing concerns, Forrester Research said private clouds developed by businesses are unlikely to succeed, in Internal private clouds doomed to fail.

The people charged with making decisions about what technology to invest in - such as cloud computing - is also changing, with other parts of businesses taking a more prominent role than previously, according to Buying technology: Who's calling the shots?.

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