Google, The Platform

Listening to Google CEO Eric Schmidt talk about the importance of a "new platform" while noting that "enterprise-focused" engineers are a small percentage of the company's engineering team, I flashed back to 1984. When Apple introduced the Macintosh with that Ridley Scott commercial, the company was making a statement about the "cultural implications of personal computers." Apple's deliberate shunning of IT departments, Steve Jobs' goal of democratizing technology, the 1984 slogan "The Computer For The Rest of Us”, the 1998 slogan "Think Different” -- each are examples of a company positioned as the alternative to "the enterprise." …continue reading →

About Those Ubiquitous Networks

Microsoft Research is creating a WiFi-style system operating in the UHF TV band that allows multiple clients to connect to a local access point from a long distance. This is a direct result of a late 2008 decision by the FCC to allow "unlicensed broadcasting devices access to white spaces in the television spectrum" (from Ars). Why is this important? The biggie, distance. This "WhiteFi" system can operate as far as one kilometer away! Can you say "wifi for rural areas"? The engineering challenges have been non-trivial. For example: …continue reading →