BBC: The Rise of Disappearables

The transcript of my BBC World Service piece on wearables. Reuters original story here.  Forget ‘wearables’, and even ‘hearables’, if you’ve ever heard of them. The next big thing in mobile devices: ‘disappearables’. Unless it really messes up, Apple is going to do for wearables with the Watch what is has done with the iPod …

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The path to a wearable future lies in academia | Reuters

The path to a wearable future lies in academia | Reuters: My oblique take on wearables For a glimpse of what is, what might have been and what may lie ahead in wearable devices, look beyond branded tech and Silicon Valley start-ups to the messy labs, dry papers and solemn conferences of academia. There you’d …

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Smartwatches: Coming Soon to a Cosmos Near You

This is a column I did for the BBC World Service, broadcast this week.  There’s been a lot of talk that the big boys — by which I mean Apple and Samsung — are about to launch so-called smart watches. But how smart does a watch have to be before we start strapping them to …

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Smarter smartphones for smarter people

This is a piece I wrote for the BBC World Service.. So, the iPhone 5 is here, and while it will sell well, probably better than any phone before it, there’s a sense of anticlimax: this, we are told, is evolution, not revolution. None of the mind-bending sense of newness and change that the iPhone …

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Taking Shady RAT to the Next Level

I know I’ve drawn attention to this before, but the timeline of McAfee’s Operation Shady RAT by Dmitri Alperovitch raises questions again about WikiLeaks’ original data. Alperovitch points out that their data goes back to mid-2006: We have collected logs that reveal the full extent of the victim population since mid-2006 when the log collection began. Note …

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Radio Australia Stuff, Jan 9 2009

For those listening to my slot on Radio Australia’s Breakfast Show, here’s what I was talking about: Palm (remember them?) come up with an iPhone killer: the Pre. Cameras finally get connected: The Sony Cybershot G3 can surf the web. Sacrifice one unhealthy habit for another: Burger King rewards Facebookers who delete friends with a …

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Word Processing: Still in the Dark Ages

I’m amazed by how word processing is still in the dark ages, considering it’s what we spend most of our day doing. Case in point is Microsoft Word 2007, which throws all sorts of weirdness—artefacts, I guess we’d call them—in text. Try scrolling through a longish document—anything over 5,000 words—and you get this kind of …

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Are We Too Obsessed With Our Cars?

More stuff from the observant and thought-provoking Nokia researcher Jan Chipchase: drivers protecting their cars in Beijing from urinating canines:  As Jan points out, lots of issues arise with this: how confused must dogs get that their choice of territory markers move around? (Or maybe that’s exactly what they want—expanding territory without them having to …

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Evernote’s Smart New Look

I like Evernote but I’ve always found the notes a bit messy: different fonts, lots of weird formatting, and not particularly easy to read and scan through. That seems to have changed with their latest version, where the notes are decently sized, free of too much extraneous stuff and easily distinguished from each other with …

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The Alarm Clock is Dead, Long Live the Cellphone

Gadgets, like software and services, often end up being used in ways the creator didn’t intend. But how many companies make the most of this opportunity? Take the cellphone. More than a third of Brits use their mobile phone as an alarm clock, according to a survey by British hotel chain Travelodge (thanks textually.org): Budget …

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