Space supercomputers, office of the future, Apple on Flash

Stories of the month - September 2010
Written by Tim Ferguson, Contributor

Stories of the month - September 2010

silicon.com had a distinctly astronomical theme in September, with a slew of the top stories looking at mankind's exploration of the universe.

However there were plenty of earth-based articles too, including the tech of the office of the future, an exploration of cloud computing and Apple's plans for the iTunes App Store.

Senior reporter Nick Heath's package of content about outer space kicked off with a story explaining how surprisingly dated tech is still playing a crucial role in space exploration.

Next up was a look at the work being carried out by the Institute of Computational Cosmology at Durham University. Researchers there are using a supercomputing cluster with 1.6TB of memory to recreate how galaxies are born and evolve.

The last part of the silicon.com space odyssey was a look at the quest for alien intelligence with a fascinating article about the Search for Extra Terrestrial Intelligence, or Seti, Institute, which has been hunting alien radio broadcasts since 1984 and plans to widen its search to 500 times more stars than it has looked at so far.

Returning to earth, silicon.com turned its attention to cloud computing to find out how it's evolving and what the future holds.

Back on solid ground, silicon.com reporter Tim Ferguson examined the future of the office and found six reasons why working life could look very different in a few years from now.

Sticking with the workplace, the idea of employees bringing their own devices into the office and using them to work is becoming more accepted. But this development means that organisations need to get up to speed about how to keep these consumer devices secure.

Cath Everett also had security on her mind as she discussed the best ways to tackle the looming data security threats in the face of reduced IT security budgets.

silicon.com's CIO Jury did a spot of future gazing, predicting that the average IT department will shrink over the next five years, as cloud computing and outsourcing continue to have an impact on in-house tech departments.

Talking of outsourcing, HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) has one of the biggest outsourcing contracts in the UK with its £750m per year deal with Capgemini. The Aspire contract is helping to cut more than £1bn of costs from HMRC's operations and the man overseeing the deal explained how the government department aims to achieve these changes.

And finally, Steve Jobs explained the reasoning behind Apple's decision to relax the restrictions on submissions to the iTunes Apps Store, which effectively opens the floodgates for Flash-based apps to come to the iPhone et al.

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