Google

Google Now: Android’s Ambitious App Pulls You Into The Google Ecosystem

Google Now and the Android ecosystem

If you have a new Android phone running the latest version of Android (“Jelly Bean,” Android versions 4.1 or 4.2), you can turn on Google Now, one of the most interesting and forward-looking smartphone apps available on any platform.

I don’t have a Jelly Bean phone, so I’m relying on news reports, blogs, and comments by knowledgeable tech journalists. […] continued

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Happy Holidays From Bruceb Consulting!

xmastablet

Season’s greetings! I hope you all get lovely new technology for the holidays and have a wonderful time poking and clicking and pinching and zooming!

I’ve been looking ahead to 2013, trying to guess what will fill our time in the technology world next year. Here are some of the things that are coming, in no particular order. […] continued

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Clash Of The Titans: The War Of The Ecosystems

walledgardenbarbedwire

Previously: Clash Of The Titans – The Battle Over Skydrive On iOS

War has broken out.

Apple, Google, Microsoft and Amazon have been building walled gardens, ecosystems of services that work best if you have multiple devices on the same platform. Example: once you buy an iPad, it is far more likely that your next phone will be an iPhone, because you’ve become familiar with how iOS works, and because the Apple ecosystem will make the two devices work together. […] continued

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Gmail Goes Down! And Other Tales Of Outages

internetisbroken1

Gmail was down today for most users for at least an hour, with Google Drive, Google Docs, Google Play and some other Google services remaining down for another hour or more. A side effect: attempts to access Google services during the outage was causing Google Chrome to crash.

Facebook was down today for about 15 minutes, following another brief outage on November 30. […] continued

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A Snapshot Of The Tech Market

Windows 8 - computers, notebooks, tablets, phones

Let’s catch our breath for a minute and do a quick recap of where things stand as we head into November.

COMPUTERS

Windows 8 is becoming available, at least as an option, on new computers from the major manufacturers. At the moment everything is in transition, so you might run into something like the order page this morning for a Dell Inspiron 14z Ultrabook, which says in boldface “Dell Recommends Window Pro 8” and then does not offer Windows 8 as an option. […] continued

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Windows 8: The View From 36,000 Feet

Windows 8 Start Screen

Windows 8 is a term that will be used to refer to several different things. It is the next operating system for Windows computers, but you’ll also see the name used loosely to describe a tablet operating system, a phone operating system, the environment for apps that run on those different platforms, and the design aesthetic that Microsoft is using for the operating systems, for apps, and for its online services. […] continued

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Use InPrivate To Manage Multiple Online Identities

Internet Explorer - InPrivate

Here’s a tip for anyone who runs into trouble juggling multiple identities in Internet Explorer. Most of you can look away and stop taking notes – this is extra credit material and won’t be on the test. This is primarily of interest to anyone who provides tech support.


SUMMARY

Internet Explorer and Windows are designed to remember logon credentials. […] continued

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Sixty Days Of Technology

changescoming

Get some popcorn, keep a grip on your wallet, and settle down. The action is about to begin.

There are big changes coming up in the world of mobile devices, and the thrilling conclusion will affect your computers as well when Microsoft officially releases Windows 8.

Here’s a look at what lies ahead. […] continued

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Microsoft Reinvents Hotmail As Outlook.com

Microsoft Reinvents Hotmail As Outlook.com

When Microsoft realized that it was on the verge of missing the implications of the Internet, it famously turned the company around in the mid-90s, building web access into all of its products and working out the implications of online access more thoroughly than anyone else.

The turnaround that Microsoft is engaged in this year might be even more impressive. […] continued

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Technical Notes About Dropbox, Google Drive And Skydrive

Dropbox, Google Drive, Skydrive technical notes

Previously:
Dropbox, Microsoft Skydrive, Google Drive: Send In The Clones

This is not an exhaustive list, just a few things that stand out about the cloud syncing services in their current forms. None of these is a reason to choose one or the other service, they’re just interesting things to know. […] continued

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Dropbox, Microsoft Skydrive, Google Drive: Send In The Clones

Dropbox, Microsoft Skydrive, Google Drive - send in the clones

Microsoft and Google each introduced services this week that are copies of Dropbox in rather precise detail.

Taken together, these services represent a fundamental change in the way we use technology. Here’s my best effort to sum it up:

Storing files on one device or in one physical location is now just another option – and not a very useful one. […] continued

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Getting Through A Transitional Year

changeahead

Let’s gather up all the things that are on the verge of changes large and small. It covers just about every category.

The common thread is that not one of them is ready now.

Everything is in play. Anything that you buy now will seem like a poor decision in hindsight within a short time. […] continued

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The Latest Toys

Ultrabooks - HP Envy Spectre 14

New toys are coming on the market, just as promised. As you look at them, keep in mind that this is only the beginning. This is a transition year that will be filled with new products, each one looking better/cheaper/shinier than the one before it.


ULTRABOOKS

By summer the shelves will be full of 13” ultra-thin, ultra-lightweight notebook computers. […] continued

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Walled Gardens Postscript: Just Tell Me What To Do!

Walled Gardens - what to do

Previously:
Walled Gardens, Part 1: Apple
Walled Gardens, Part 2: Google
Walled Gardens, Part 3: Microsoft

This is a transition year. There are no right or wrong answers. Buy whatever feels right and be prepared for some bumps and the possibility that you’ll replace a device or two in 2013 to consolidate everything in one garden. […] continued

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Walled Gardens, Part 3: Microsoft

walledgarden5_thumb2

Previously:
Walled Gardens, Part 1: Apple
Walled Gardens, Part 2: Google


MICROSOFT

Set your clock ahead by eight months. It’s the holiday shopping season in late 2012.

Make two assumptions.

  • Microsoft has delivered Windows 8. In its final form, the design is solid and well accepted. The app store is lively and the cloud components work as planned.
[…] continued Read more