The dumbing down of Windows 8

Beta versions of Windows 8 this week lost their nifty Aero user interface, which Microsoft’s top user interface guy now calls “cheesy” and “dated,” though two weeks ago he apparently loved it. Developers are scratching their heads over this UI flatification of what’s supposed to become the world’s most popular operating system. But there’s no confusion at my house: Aero won’t run on a phone.

Look at the illustration to the left. It shows projected growth in Internet devices.  Keep in mind while reading this that a PC lasts at least three years, a phone lasts 18 months and nobody knows yet how long the average tablet will be around but I’ll guess two […]

The next Japanese nuclear accident (it’s inevitable) will be even worse

quake-probThis is my sixth column about the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear accident that started last year in Japan following the tsunami. But unlike those previous columns (1,2,3,4,5), this one looks forward to the next Japanese nuclear accident, which will probably take place at the same location. That accident, involving nuclear fuel rods, is virtually inevitable, most likely preventable, and the fact that it won’t be prevented comes down solely to Japanese government and Tokyo Electric Power Company (TEPCO) incompetence and stupidity. Japanese citizens will probably die unnecessarily because the way things are done at the top in Japan is completely screwed up.

Understand […]

Google+ versus Facebook: It’s the apps, stupid!

With Facebook now public and sitting on a huge pile of cash, let’s turn the conversation to the social network’s most pressing competitor, Google. Google and Google+ don’t appear to present much of a threat to Facebook, but the game board was reset on Friday and tactics at both companies will change accordingly. Now Facebook has to find a way to grow revenue and users and will increasingly bump up against Google’s huge advantages in search and apps. For Facebook to achieve its goals, the company will have to enter both spaces with gusto.

Google has learned how to leverage its strengths and suddenly one of those strengths is Facebook’s success. Now that Facebook is a […]

Why Facebook isn’t embarrassed by its IPO

So Facebook is now a public company but with the shares only one day old the news is already bad: Facebook shares didn’t pull a Google or a Yahoo or a Microsoft or even a TheGlobe.com and soar out of sight on IPO day. They ended right where they started pretty much after the day traders took their easy profits. And while Wall Street sees this performance as a dud, Facebook itself sees it as a masterful piece of financial engineering.

If you are an investment banker — and let me re-emphasize that, if you are an investment banker — you want IPO shares to go up on their first day, […]

Facebook IPO defies Cringely (would you like that in BOLD?)

Proving once again that I am an idiot, Facebook went public this morning with neither a whimper nor a bang. Back in January I predicted that Facebook godhead Mark Zuckerberg would implode during the company road show and the social media giant would back into becoming public simply by buying another company that’s already traded. From recent stories it looks like Zuckerberg did implode (blowing-off investors, hiding in the bathroom, etc.) but it didn’t matter: the deal was sealed long before any of that happened.

What’s next for Facebook of course, is fulfilling its promise as a public company. I still don’t think the company will ever […]