Wednesday, 20 June 2012

MSIE overtaken

    Back in April I wrote a piece about the rise of Google Chrome and the pending loss to MSIE of the number one browser slot. Based on StatCounter GlobalStats data I predicted that this would happen in June.

    I was wrong. It happened in May. Finally we're in an era in which supporting outdated, insecure, and non-standards-compliant browsers is no longer considered a priority.

    It would be tempting to slam MSIE. Hell, the product deserves it! But I hope losing the top spot reveals Microsoft at their best. When they're top dog they don't behave well, but when they're the underdog, they innovate. It would be great to see a future version of MSIE that really gave Chrome and Firefox a run for their money, a super-fast, secure, up-to-date, non-proprietary, and standards-compliant browser.

    Well, I can hope, can't I.

Tuesday, 19 June 2012

Oxon-RaspberryPi meetup 2

   Here's a quick report on my return from the second meeting of the Oxon-RaspberryPi group.

    So, about twenty people gathered in the meeting room at Electrocomponents on Oxford Business Park. Electrocomponents are the parent company of RS, one of the companies selling the Raspberry Pi, so a massive thank you to them for allowing us to use their space, and for providing us with some very interesting insights into some of the details behind their Pi offering.
    It was interesting to see the diversity of attendees, of their interests and level of expertise. We were treated to demonstrations of XBMC media centres running on a Pi, of a wireless serial link between a Pi and an Arduino, to a demo of simple GPIO interfacing and to my favourite of the evening - a Pi running RiscOS. My demo of a Pi running the Natural Language Toolkit seemed paltry by comparison.
A Pi running RiscOS
    Most importantly we discussed the idea of a group project, something diverse enough to allow all group members to contribute yet unique enough to allow us to contribute something to the Pi community. Several good ideas have been proposed, no doubt a front-runner will have emerged by the time we next meet.
    So all in all a positive experience. One of my fellow attendees remarked to me as we left that it was likely some of the major tech businesses of the coming decade would receive their start from the Raspberry Pi. I thought of the Silicon Valley garages of a few decades ago and couldn't help but agree. Where did we lose our way, back in the 1990s?