Technology

From iGeek
Jump to: navigation, search
Technology.png
I used to be an industry tech writer and blogger. Due to my current job (and knowing too much about what's going on, and various non-disclosure agreements as well as diplomatic decorum), this is one of the more constrained areas for me. So while I'd like to write more, I'm restrained to very select and generic topics. Or just share articles from decades ago.

Apple

2016 MacBook Pro w/Touch bar

MBPrComic.png

There's a lot of whining and complaints about the New MacBook Pro's (MBP2016). Some valid, many overstated but heartfelt. But I think the problem was more about messaging than delivery. For me, and most users, it's a great product.

Apple's Greatest Misses

MasterFails.jpg

I'm not an Apple basher, or Apple fanboy. Apple is a company, like any other. The problem is once you're big, you attract attention (good and bad), and the most newsworthy stories are those with the most drama or sensationalism. I hate them both -- the rabid fans and Apple haters. But I do like to document the stuff others aren't. This article isn't into their many revolutions and successes, just a few highlights of technologies or ideas they went *splat*. Not to bash my Fruity Cupertino friends, but any mistake is useful, if you learn from it.

2015 iPad Pro (1st Gen)

IPadPro.png
A better iPad. It 's better in every way -- bigger, better, faster... and more expensive. OK, better in all ways but price. My Big-iPhone (7 Plus) meant that I was using my iPad's less -- but give me a bigger screen and keyboard that works, and I find that the iPad fills a niche for me, as a great travel/note-taking and entertainment device, when it's not worth bringing out my laptop. And with an App, it works as a second screen for my laptop when I do real work.

General

Information Age: Interesting Times

Interesting.png

These article were first written as BBS posts, in the 1980's or in the 1990's computer forums. Microcomputers (you probably know as desktops) displaced "Big Iron" and dumb terminal, but these battles and questions had been raging for decades back then. Did people want all their data on them, or just be able to access it from anywhere (and any device). And the answer was, and still is, "yes", both please.

Information Age: History Repeating

InfoAge2.png

Alan Kay thought up the idea of the DynaBook in 1968 (which later became laptops, or tablets), by listening to those around him, predicting the same things. History and progress is happening in slow motion. It only seems fast, because we're moving slower.

Information Age: Dueling Futures

InfoAge.png

What is more import, our physical data or network access to that data? We flipped from timeshared terminals to PC's. The Web, Java and Chromebooks are all trying to return us back to the tether. And remember, there is no cloud, there's just network access to someone else's computer. So who wins? So far, we do, as both are getting better and competing for our hearts and wallets.

Balanced tech company

WellRunCompany.jpeg
As an oversimplification, balancing opposing forces in Sales/Marketing, Finance/Operations and Engineering is key to having a well run Tech Company. Throw in some other difficulties like good communication, good focus, and reducing politics, and things will hum along smoothly. But it's like trying to keep jugglers riding unicycles-sticks on a slack-line: while the theory is easy, the continuous shifting makes the real-life implementation hard.

Hollywood Hackers versus real life

CSICyber.jpeg
Intrusion and prevention is nothing like the movies. Think months to deliver an attack, to get through layers of defenses. And most counter-hacking is computer forensics to figure out what they got, days or weeks after they're gone: following log trails, or decoding some payload. If you know they're there, they can block you -- and they can usually only figure out someone was there, long after they're gone.

Origins of the Internet

Internet.jpg

Government/ARPA research gave us the Internet the same way they invented the car or airplane. By 1976 (founding of ARPA) we had hundreds of computers networked, by 1993 the Internet only carried 1% of the information traffic (and we had plenty of traffic). But by 2007 that had flipped and most traffic was TCP/IP based, because it was free, standard and good enough. However, without TCP/IP, one of the other protocols would have become a standard, and we’d still have had everything we have today (in some areas, more). The government gave us nothing that we didn’t already have (or wouldn’t have). Politicians (as usual) took credit for other people’s work.

Countdown to Zero Day

Countdown.jpeg

My knowledge runs deep into security, but I loved the book: through I wanted it a bit more technical in some areas and a bit tighter overall. Definitely a good book for futurists who want to think about what the future might look like as these hacks and attacks become more common.

Driving by watching the rear view mirror

RearviewMirror.jpg

A common mistake I've seen businesses repeat, over and over again - or more accurately I've seen many companies do once or twice until they go out of business or the idiots doing it are fired, is to "drive by watching the review mirror".

Instead of analyzing and thinking, learning technology (and markets and customers), they decide, "someone else is doing it, and since it worked for them, it'll work for us".

I want to head-smack them.... and then point out the first rule of Italian racing; "what's behind you, is not important". You're not them, they're not you: different timing, resources, talents, markets, culture, personalities, and so on -- so crushing brilliant new ideas (e.g. my ideas) because that's not what someone else is doing, is just stupid. I have no problems being told "no", if you have an intelligent reason for it, and can back it up. But "that's not what everyone else is doing" is called a bandwagon fallacy, and isn't intelligent or support. So, "everyone else does it that way", makes as much sense to me, as driving while watching all the cars behind you. By the time they slam on their brakes or swerve (and you notice and react), it is already too late. I prefer to keep my eye's on the road, and not try to lead by following.