Reviews

Visual Studio 2013 Released – Worth Upgrading?

Posted In C++/C#, Working in Tech
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Visual Studio, Microsoft’s flagship development tool and considered the best IDE around, has had an overhaul, a new coat of polish and some new features added. But is it worth upgrading, when everyone upgraded to Visual Studio 2012 so recently? First appearing in 1997, Visual Studio has a long heritage. A year after its initial debut, Microsoft released version 6.0. After that, there wasn’t another upgrade for four years. In fact, I was still using Visual Studio 6.0 at work… continue…

Scott Adams: Goals are for Losers

Posted In Looking in Tech
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“Goals are for Losers” and “Passion Is Bullshit” are among the messages Dilbert creator Scott Adams shares in his new book, How to Fail at Almost Everything and Still Win Big. And yes, this is a book about Success. Adams is probably one of the most unlikely failures that you’ve ever heard of. And again, yes, we’re talking about Scott Adams. In his book, Adams takes a very personal approach to show how he failed his way to success, but… continue…

How to Hire the Next Steve Jobs

Posted In Living in Tech
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Nolan Bushnell knows how to spot talent. Among the hires he made two years after he founded Atari in 1972 was an intense and difficult young man who wasn’t fond of bathing. His name was Steve Jobs. In fact, Bushnell was one of the very few bosses Jobs ever had, and the two were close friends for decades. In Finding the Next Steve Jobs (written with Gene Stone), Bushnell  reveals his strategies for identifying out-of-the-box thinkers who can propel a company forward… continue…

An Internet Pioneer Is Worried About the Future

Posted In Living in Tech
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Jaron Lanier, the dreadlocked digital media pioneer who is sometimes referred to as “the father of virtual reality,” has been looking hard at the online world we now live in, and he doesn’t like what he sees…even though he freely admits he helped create it. In clear, engaging, and for the most part non-partisan language, he worries about a future of digital haves—the Silicon Valley elites whose super servers collect our valuable online behavior—and have nots—all of us who freely… continue…

Big Data in Our Lives: For Better and For Worse

Posted In Living in Tech
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An engaging and thought-provoking book like Big Data: A Revolution that Will Transform How We Live, Work, and Think couldn’t be any timelier. Given the crash course on data collection and analysis the American public has gotten from our national security agencies in recent months, we need to know more, and we need to know now. Victor Mayer-Schonberger and Kenneth Cukier call themselves “messengers” about Big Data and not necessarily “evangelists,” but it’s hard not to get a little excited… continue…

Morozov: The Internet Can’t Save the World

Posted In Living in Tech
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When you learn that Evgeny Morozov’s previous book was called The Net Delusion: The Dark Side of Internet Freedom, you quickly realize that his new book, To Save Everything, Click Here, isn’t likely to be an ode to the utopian wonder of the Web. And indeed it isn’t. Morozov, a scholar and writer who studies the political and social implications of technology, scoffs at what he calls “solutionism,” the idea that with enough Big Data, computing power, and crowdsourcing, the… continue…

Review: Favi’s SmartStick Falls Short

Posted In Living in Tech
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Smart TVs are expensive and quickly become outmoded, so choosing a dumb HDTV and Internet-connected set top box is a budget-wise alternative. Set top boxes get smaller every year but will, I believe, be replaced with even smaller devices that are more closely related to the USB flash drive than a cable or satellite box. We’re already seeing evidence of this in the marketplace. Recently, I had the opportunity to test one of these shrinking TV devices. Favi Entertainment invited… continue…

Present Shock: Stuck in The Now

Posted In Living in Tech
present shock book cover by douglas rushkoff
Way back in 1970, futurist Alvin Toffler, the author of the best-selling Future Shock, warned us that “too much change in too short a period of time” was certain to cause both individuals and societies “shattering stress and disorientation.” No kidding. Today, however, we’re no longer obsessed with the future because the urgency of the present moment — everything from stock prices to texts to tweets — distracts us from both the lessons of the past and our plans for the… continue…

Google Execs Predict a Future of Online Turmoil

The New Digital Age book cover
Despite the seismic changes wrought by the Internet over the past 20 years, there’s a sense out there that we’re really only getting started. Who better to piece together a book full of sweeping predictions about the Internet’s impact going forward than Eric Schmidt, the executive chairman and former CEO of Google, and Jared Cohen, director of Google Ideas and a fellow at the Council on Foreign Relations? In The New Digital Age: Reshaping the Future of People, Nations and… continue…

Food and Learning Strategies: ‘The 4-Hour Chef’

Posted In Living in Tech
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Timothy Ferriss is a force to be reckoned with. A Silicon Valley lifestyle and self-improvement guru who has made a name for himself as a prophet of ultra-efficiency in all aspects of life, he’s a non-stop self-promoting idea machine with more than 300,000 Twitter followers, most of whom probably found him through his first book, the optimistically named 4-Hour Workweek. To follow up on that tome and its fitness-related sequel — The 4-Hour Body — Ferriss has come up with The 4-Hour… continue…