Microsoft Windows

Paul Little seems…uhm…ahh…err…’confused’

Paul Little has a rage in the Herald on Sunday about monopolies, triggered by the proposed merger of his employer NZME. with Fairfax.

When the all-but-inevitable merger of media companies NZME and Fairfax was announced, journalistic reaction fell into two camps. Those with secure jobs regretfully accepted that it was probably for the best in the long run. Those without security of tenure heard the bicycle bell of the Newspaper Boy of the Apocalypse.

Some members of the public lamented yet another kick in the guts of journalism, and many more worried about possible effects on their daily diet of Naz and Jordan.

Whatever else this merger is, and whatever its results in terms of the information we get, it is part of a seemingly unstoppable trend towards monopoly in all areas of commerce.

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How big is that rock they live under in Alexandra?

Stupid People

Seriously, this scam’s been going over two years and there are still people who don’t know about it?

This is nothing more than a stupid tax.  

At this stage, if “Microsoft” phones you and wants your money, and you don’t know it’s not Microsoft, you deserve to be cleaned out.

Two Alexandra residents have been defrauded thousands of dollars by scam artists posing as Microsoft employees, police say.

The fraudsters have been calling residents and stating that viruses had been detected on their home computers.    Read more »

Is Internet Explorer finally dead?

Could it be, the world’s worst internet browser software, Internet Explorer, is about to be killed off by Microsoft?

Microsoft is secretly developing a new web browser to replace Internet Explorer, it has been claimed.

Experts say the new browser, codenamed Spartan, will be unveiled on January 21st when Microsoft shows off Windows 10 for the first time.

It is believed the new browser will look more like Google’s Chrome browser, and be faster than IE.

Faster than IE? ..that won’t be hard….dead squirrels are faster than IE.

‘Microsoft is building a new browser, codenamed Spartan, which is not IE 12 — at least according to a couple of sources of mine,’ said Mary Jo Foley of ZDNET.

Thomas Nigro, a Microsoft Student Partner lead and developer of the modern version of VLC a media playing app, claimed on Twitter earlier this month that he heard Microsoft was building a brand-new browser.     Read more »

Unsurprising really, I haven’t used Microsoft products for years

I haven’t used Microsoft Office products in years.

I mostly live in the cloud and where possible use Google Apps and in the past have used OpenOffice as a viable alternative to Office.

Office applications became more and more bloated and the days of massive installations on hard drives to do basic things like simple spreadsheets and documents is long gone.

The advent of tablet and mobile computing has pretty much killed off applications like Office.

It may be one of Microsoft’s biggest squandered opportunities.

Tired of waiting for Office to be optimised for their mobile gadgets, a growing contingent of younger companies is turning to cheaper, simpler and touch-friendly apps that can perform word processing and other tasks in the cloud.

Take Artivest Holdings, a New York-based financial services startup that sells alternative investment products. The New York-based company uses an app called Quip, which combines word processing and messaging, to handle all but the most sensitive legal and financial files.  Read more »

WhaleTech: Microsoft Blue: Good grief, Ballmer’s off his leash again

crazy steve

Via fakesteve.net.

Thanks to the flop of Windows 8, Steve Ballmer’s trying to tell us all that more frequent updates to the company’s flagship product is the new normal. Instead of admitting that the latest Windows is an abject failure and that this necessitated the fast-track of the ‘fixed’ version,  he’s been spotted jumping around at Microsoft’s developer conference declaring ‘Rapid Release! Rapid Release!’.

Be warned: when the Microsoft CEO romps, he means business. For those who haven’t seen what kind of a loon is in charge of the company, feast your eyes.

Steve’s claim that Windows 8.1, known to some as ‘blue’, heralds a new dawn of short cycles for product updates isn’t entirely unprecedented. While Windows isn’t exactly an iStore app (or, indeed, a Windows Store app…did I just see a tumbleweed blow past?), it does enjoy a long history of very frequent updates – except these have consistently focused on the many security problems in the shipped software.

Windows 8.1 is a free upgrade, of course, from a company notoriously unabashed about charging lots for its software. Rapid release! Rapid Release! Should have called it Service Pack 1, Steve, like you used to in the good old days.

Those unfortunates who have Windows 8 and are hankering after a ‘Start’ button, settle down. It’s not coming back, or at least, not as you have come to know and love it. Instead, the major changes include such arbitrariness as ‘better organisation and customisation on the Start Screen’, and ‘improvements to Windows Store and Start apps’. You can boot it into Desktop mode….and then the Start button kicks off that abominable Start Screen.

Windows 8.1 Beta preview is available as a preview from 26 June in the Windows Store.  As with all software, download and install at your peril; messing with operating systems is particularly risky and can bork your entire machine. If you’re going to do that, you might as well bite the bullet and revert to Windows 7. It is, after all, a far better operating system.

Whaletech: The Nokia Lumia 920

Nokia Lumia 920

This is a review provided by the wife of a long term reader of the blog.

Before I begin this I should point out that we are an iPhone family.

Admittedly my two previous phones from the Apple family have been hand me downs from my partner but I have been amazed at how these phones work, the features and apps available have made life easier and I have found myself able to do most of my online work and leisure through the handset rather than having to switch on the computer.

So it was with some scepticism I received the news that I was to be given a new phone to trial and it was not an Apple. Big boots to fill you could say.

My requirements beyond the usual making and receiving phone calls and texting the kids have grown to fit the modern smartphone world with email, taking photos, Facebook and browsing the web becoming an increasing part of my usage.

The first thing that struck me upon opening the box was the wireless charging. Quite how it works is a complete mystery but surely all rechargeable items will be using a similar method soon. You just lay the phone on the charging pad and hey presto! No more knotted wires, no more trying to plug it in. Just put the phone on the pad and away it goes.  Read more »

WhaleTech: Microsoft stuffed up its mobile strategy – Bill Gates

In an interview with CBS This Morning, Microsoft chairman Bill Gates has admitted that the software giant didn’t nail the mobile market when it had the opportunity. “There’s a lot of things like cellphones where we didn’t get out in the lead early,” says Gates. “We didn’t miss cellphones, but the way that we went about it didn’t allow us to get the leadership.” Gates says this strategy was “clearly a mistake.”

Some refreshing honesty there.   Read more »