Working in Tech

Best practices, new technology and products, and tips to help you stay on the cutting edge.

What PlayStation 4 Winning the Console Wars Means for Developers

EA Game Screen Shot
  Sony’s PlayStation 4 is plunging ahead of Microsoft’s Xbox One in total sales, according to reports. The PlayStation 4 has managed to sell 7 million consoles in its first five months of release, along with 20.5 million games. That’s a striking contrast to the Xbox One, which has sold 5 million units since its November debut. Click here for game development jobs. In an attempt to put a positive spin on the numbers, Microsoft executive Yusuf Mehdi released an… continue…

The Future of Robots: Soft, Flexible, Squeezable

Posted In Working in Tech
Otherlab Soft Robots
If someone asks you to picture a robot, the first image that probably comes to mind is the steel exoskeleton from “The Terminator” films, or one of those creepy mechanical “dogs” produced by Boston Robotics. But if teams of researchers at MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL) and other institutions succeed in their latest endeavors, the robots of the future could look very different: soft, squiggly, and flexible. Click here to find robotics jobs. “There are only maybe… continue…

Why You Might Want to Hold Off Developing Apps for Windows 8

Windows 8
Microsoft executives have spent the past year and a half promoting Windows 8’s app store, in the hope that third-party developers would create a thriving ecosystem of games and productivity software. What’s the result of all that time and energy? As InfoWorld relates in a new posting, some 150,000 apps currently reside in the Windows Store—not a very impressive number, when you consider the number of Windows devices currently on the market, not to mention the hundreds of thousands of… continue…

Mark Zuckerberg’s Management Tips

Facebook Home App
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg sat down with The New York Times recently to discuss some of his company’s latest moves, including its high-profile acquisition of WhatsApp. Much of that discussion focused on Creative Labs, which is tasked with building standalone apps—not all of which will feature Facebook’s branding. “In mobile there’s a big premium on creating single-purpose first-class experiences,” Zuckerberg told the Times’ Farhad Manjoo. Click here to find IT manager positions. On that front, Facebook’s Messenger app—which, as the… continue…

How One Apple Employee Survived a Steve Jobs Product Review

Posted In Working in Tech
Steve Jobs
In the popular conception, the late Steve Jobs is a megalomaniacal jerk who screamed, bullied, and pushed until he got whatever he wanted. But according to Don Melton, who started the Safari and WebKit projects at Apple, Jobs was a bit misunderstood. “Steve was not some mercurial ogre or cartoon autocrat. He was just very, very busy,” Melton wrote in a recent posting on his personal site. “He didn’t have time for ‘yes men,’ the easily frightened, or those who… continue…

Google Glass on Sale: Who’s Buying?

Google Glass Sunglasses Thumbnail
Google has made its Google Glass augmented-reality headsets available for sale April 15. There’s just one catch: It’s a one-day sale, starting at 9 A.M. EST. “Any adult in the U.S. can become an Explorer by visiting our site and purchasing Glass for $1500 + tax—and it now comes with your favorite shade or frame, thanks to feedback from our current Explorers,” reads Google’s official posting on the matter. “The number of spots available is limited, so mark your calendar… continue…

Amazon’s Fire OS: Worth Your Development Time?

Kindle Fire
If rumors (and The Wall Street Journal) prove correct, Amazon will release a smartphone near the end of 2014. Those rumors have percolated for quite some time; in early 2013, for example, Amazon hired a former manager of Microsoft’s Windows Phone developer experience to work on “something secret,” which sparked a flurry of publications proclaiming that such a device was in the works. Click here to find mobile development jobs. Amazon already has a handful of branded devices on the… continue…

For Best Data Analytics, Collaboration is Key

Posted In Data, Working in Tech
Data Collaboration
A new report from research firm IDC suggests that “Big Data” projects yield best results when a company’s IT, analytics, and line of business (LOB) units collaborate tightly together. Seems obvious, right? Except that, as interest in analytics increases among companies, there’s the perception that employees tasked with data crunching can (and should) do their jobs without the involvement of other business units; the rise of powerful “self-service” business-intelligence tools has only emphasized that theme. With many companies’ personnel resources… continue…

What Microsoft Dropping Windows Licensing Fees Means for You

Nokia Phone
Microsoft plans on offering Windows licenses for free to manufacturing partners who install the operating system on devices with screens smaller than nine inches. This is a wholesale shredding of the company’s traditional playbook, which dictated that all Microsoft software come with a licensing fee of some sort, and it suggests the danger that Google Android and Apple’s iOS pose to Windows’ traditional dominance of the operating-system space. To wit: a few years ago, the PC sat at the center… continue…

Using Netcat to Read, Write Data Across Your Network

Posted In Linux, Working in Tech
Wi-Fi Testing
Testing a network connection or troubleshooting a data flow is a common job for the system admin or developer. One tool they can take advantage of: the Netcat command line program, which provides a quick way to read and write data between two devices over a TCP/IP network. I recently used several flavors of Netcat to help me develop a servo control program between the new Arduino Yun and a simple companion slider application, written in Processing, on my Linux… continue…