garrylengthorn

Archive for November, 2012|Monthly archive page

25-Nov-12 IOS 7. Really?

In Blog, Personal, Technology on November 25, 2012 at 11:00 pm

Today I started thinking about a number of features that are unlikely to be in the next Apple, IOS 7 release.

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Here are my top three.

How unlikely would it be to see a start menu type icon on the next release. Wishful thinking for Mr Bill Gates.

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A new command level language for Apple. How useful in this new age of applications!

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A classic status bar to keep you informed during slow application installs.

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I know these are all unlikely, but no one thought 30 years ago that dumb computer clients would return…

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23-Nov-12 Please release me…

In Blog, Personal, Technology on November 22, 2012 at 7:27 am

After a few weeks of will they, won’t they, Microsoft have now released Windows Mobile 7.8 to the manufacturers, which probably means that we are likely to see a product release of this update over the coming weeks.

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For those who are unclear, Windows 7.8 has been released for those individuals who currently have a Windows 7 mobile device that cannot be upgraded to the full mobile 8 experience (including IE10) due to hardware limitations!

For those who invested in Windows 7, this is a tad disappointing and I reckon Microsoft may have missed a trick, as I am not sure these individuals are going to make a further investment in to mobile 8 devices.

The big question for me is whether the applications that are developed for 8 will work on 7.8. If anyone knows the answer to this, please post me a reply?

Personally I cannot wait to see the 7.8 update, as I’m getting a tad bored with the current version and some of its limitations. Some of the new updates sound quite cool, so let’s hope the release is out before the end of this year.

To close out today, one of my favourite pictures over the last 30 years of computing.

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And I’m worried about 7.8 running my applications. How life has moved on, because back then, it was whether you had a pocket big enough for your phone?

17-Nov-12 Squeezed!

In Blog, Music, Personal, Sports on November 17, 2012 at 11:07 am

The weekend started with a squeeze last night. Literally, as we went and saw the eighties band and their support Paul Heaton in Guildford.

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Squeeze played a real mix of both old and new material, with the highlight for me being ‘Labelled with Love’.

If I am to be honest, I was a tad disappointed, as a lot of unfamiliar new material was played. It also did not help that a middle age drunk decided to make an idiot of himself and was throwing abuse at the band whilst playing the new stuff!

Paul Heaton, as their support was Brilliant. Better know for his material from the ‘Beautiful South’ and ‘Housemartins’, he also played a real mix of old and new material with the highlight being ‘Caravan of love’.

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Paul seems to have a real knack for writing very clever lyrics and his 30 minute stint was brilliant!

This morning, I went and ran 5km at our local park. A run, which is part of the park run scheme. It was my first outing!

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It was a wet and muddy run this morning, but I was extremely pleased on my first attempt to come 153rd in a time of 30 minutes and 24 seconds.

My goal (always pushing myself) is to break 30 minutes.

13-Nov-12 Blue screen of death!

In Blog, Personal, Technology on November 13, 2012 at 5:15 pm

During the mid nineties IT professionals became familiar with a blue screen boot problem with Windows operating systems that became commonly known as the blue screen of death.

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For those who were working on IT systems back in this period, it was very bad news, as inevitability it meant a fatal error and a long night or weekend ahead!

For some Microsoft senior folk, the last month must seem like a blue screen of death for them.

Their woes started a month ago when both Steve Ballmer, their CEO, and Stephen Sinofsky, one of their top Windows executives, were formally reprimanded and then punished with a lower than expected bonus over Windows missteps.

Things seemed to be looking a tad more positive last week when their new range of Windows 8 seemed to get quite a good public and press review, but just like the Windows product, the unpredictable happened today when Stephen Sinofsky exited after a 23 year spell. Especially surprising, as he was one day predicted to get the top job!

I guess the question is now how long Steve Ballmer lasts? I guess this depends on how successful the new product release is?

Let’s hope its more stable than previous versions..

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12-Nov-12 Hold out for infinity and beyond…

In Blog, Personal, Technology on November 12, 2012 at 7:18 pm

As my title implies, you should definitely hold out if you are looking for a deal with your broadband supplier over the coming weeks, as I found to my benefit late last week.

Being someone who always looks for the best deal, I have bucked this trend in terms of my home voice and broadband supplier, as I have always gone for quality, hence my selection of BT for many years.

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In fact, on may occasions I have been tempted by the lure of competitive solutions from Virgin and Sky, but have never succumbed to their solution, as this has been tainted by poor reviews over speed and reliability.

I’m sure there are a number of you out there who probably have your own alternative views of this, but this has been the view from my own personal space, where I want a crackle free call and certainly the megabits per second I’ve been promised.

Anyhow, although I have been offered an upgrade to Infinity on several different occasions over the last 2-3 months, I was offered a free upgrade last week, as part of a special campaign.

For me, this means a connection that should be significantly faster (about 10 times faster if you believe the press releases), which should hopefully satisfy the demands of a teenage family that truly does need super fast broadband for those gaming, music and film downloads!

The lesson. Hold out for that deal. The market is getting more competitive by the day and speeds are getting faster. Hard to be believe it was only 12 years ago, that 56k seemed fast!

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11-Nov-12 Fijians at a loss..

In Blog, Personal on November 10, 2012 at 10:04 am

Yesterday I had a complete break from technology for the day and had the pleasure at being a corporate guest of the England versus Fiji friendly game at Twickenham.

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England were certainly in dominant form yesterday scoring several tries in a 54-12 victory.

Twickenham is an excellent stadium with very good facilities, but it is yet another national stadium in far from the most perfect position in London for transport.

With this in mind and a opportunity to walk off the corporate hospitality, we did the 2 mile hike to Richmond taking on route one or two local public houses! I’d recommend this to anyone, as Twickenham and Richmond have some friendly hostels.

Although not a huge Rugby Union fan, we had a fantastic day yesterday that was made all the better by the friendly crowd and player behaviour both inside and outside the ground.

On leaving the ground, we shared an elevator with Lewis Moody, ex England international, who was the perfect gentlemen in ensuring the elevator could accommodate as many adults and children as possible.

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Football can learn a thing or two from this sport!

07-Nov-12 Apple about to be eaten…

In Blog, Personal, Technology on November 7, 2012 at 8:34 pm

As Windows mobile version 8 is now officially available in the UK, the big question now is whether this new range of devices can actually make any inroads in to the market space already proliferated with Android and Apple devices.

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Microsoft have certainly got a chance to close the gap with Apple, as they will deliver their mobile platform on a number of Nokia and HTC hardware platforms, whilst Apple will be limited to their own designed shell.

The real game changer is going to be the variety of applications of course, but the good news already is that 46 of the top 50 downloaded applications are already available, which include the key social tools (Twitter and Facebook), as well as Angry Birds!

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All this is great news. My only disappointment is that my current Windows Nokia Lumia will only get the stop gap upgrade to Windows 7.8 (I wonder if that will support Angry Birds), as apparently the hardware does not support the full version!

I’m wondering which of my blog readers will be the first to purchase a full mobile 8 device? Let me know.

06-Nov-12 Britpop Windows!

In Blog, Personal, Uncategorized on November 6, 2012 at 7:27 am

The mid nineties might be remembered for the age of Britpop dominated by bands such as Oasis and Blur, but its hard to believe that 17 years ago the first Microsoft operating system to introduce Internet Explorer was released.

Windows 95, back in the day, was a bit of a game changer, as Microsoft promised that it was the biggest transformation in desktop computing (at the time).

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Back then, Microsoft were the leading software company in the world, as IBM faded from being the previous masters. Apple were only a little thorn in Bill Gates side at the time; how times have changed.

95 was significant, as it was truly Microsoft’s first attempt at a proper network operating system, after 3.11 (Windows for Workgroups) followed Windows 3.

These were indeed special times, as the iconic start menu button was released to the world and Microsoft were keen to get Internet Explorer released, as there was a view that the World Wide Web might become quite a big thing!

The current Windows 8 version might also be an iconic release for Windows, as the world and the desktop space has certainly changed dramatically. Let’s hope this version keeps them in the game, as although not always the most popular giant, they have certainly transformed my industry and my life over the last 20 years!

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02-Nov-12 Which tablet? The choice is yours…

In Blog, Personal on November 2, 2012 at 4:56 pm

My first blog in November, and, as we head towards the seasonal festivities, I wonder how many of you are debating what tablet to put on your shopping lists!

Over the last week or two, it seems the scene has developed even more so than normal, with a plethora of 7″ and 10″ devices hitting the marketplace.

With so much choice, and even more devices no doubt ready to launch, this is my quick assessment to give you some food for thought!

Apple – With the launch of the iPad mini, are an obvious choice for those who still are attached to the charisma of this leading brand.

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Being only a converted Apple user earlier this year, I have been extremely impressed by the pure simplicity of the device, the capability of sharing data amongst various models, the streaming features and support of mainstream applications (Twitter, Facebook etc).

Google – With the launch of a wider set of devices and 3g, the Nexus is now becoming a real competitor for Apple. Especially as Android mobile devices are now also eating in to Apple’s market share (Samsung, HTC etc).

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Being a recent adopter, the range of applications and the persistent nature of running applications (in the background) make this a real winner. With built in YouTube and Google Map applications, this is a fully featured device that is fun to use.

Microsoft – The once largest software company is now back in the game with their new surface product.

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Unfortunately this is the only device that I don’t have personal experience of yet (happy to trial a unit if any sponsors out there), but know the metro interface is pretty cool, as I have been using the older mobile version for many months.

In terms of Apple, I have to wonder whether the creativity of the product range is now exhausted? From personal experience, IOS 6 was a complete disappointment and you feel the mini is literally a reaction to what other brands are doing in the market!

I’ve said it before about the Microsoft mobile products, but it is all about the variety and depth of applications, as even some of the social media products are not yet ready (Twitter).

If they can go some way to matching the variety of apps on Apple or even Android devices, they have a chance of breaking market share.

Am I standing in the Google corner at the moment? I think its safe to say I am, as I think it ticks all the boxes. One thing you can be sure of though is that any investment is short term, as even more cool and practical devices are literally just around the corner!

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