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David Strom

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Top Stories by David Strom

Is it time to retire Microsoft Office, as my colleague Eric Lundquist says in his latest Information Week column? Much as I would like to, I can’t. Part of the problem is addiction, part comfort, and part because it just works well enough that there isn’t any reason to get rid of it. Office is the kudzu of the computer world: you can’t easily get rid of it, it has grown like topsy to take over other apps, and it holds you in its grip something fierce. Why addiction? Let’s face it, we have enough keystroke and command syntax memory that switching to something else isn’t useful. And yes, there are all these fancy tools that didn’t exist a decade ago, or even last month. Okay, I’ll admit it: my name is David and I have been a Microsoft user for 20 years. I would guess Eric is too. But retire Office? No chance. Comfort should count for a lot when you boot up your PC and... (more)

Deusm: Khan Academy Teaches Coding Basics

Primary school students — or adults who are complete computer novices — looking to learn programming skills now have a new resource with a sequence of online classes from Khan Academy. Khan has been assembling more than 3,000 free self-paced videos on a wide variety of science, math, and other topics. Last week, it added computer science basics to its repertoire. You can read my post on Develop in the Cloud here. ... (more)

Time To Join The DevOps Movement

CA Technologies says, “For DevOps to work correctly, it must be treated as a movement, not a market for a specific vendor’s products.” As Arlo Guthrie once sang, with three people it is an organization. But if we can find 50 people who can sing the praises of DevOps, it can become a movement! Trouble is, many software developers are stuck in the past. In a 2012 service virtualization survey of IT executives and managers by analyst firm voke, only 6% of the group responded they were completely confident that new IT applications would be delivered to market on time. But maybe its h... (more)

Google vs. China, Our First Cyber War

Last week we witnessed the first Cyber War, but it didn’t go down quite as many of us expected. Instead of a group of anonymous hackers trying to take over thousands of infected PCs or trying to cut off access to critical infrastructure, we saw Google declare the first salvo in its war against Chinese censorship by moving its servers to Hong Kong. The more I thought about this, the more I realized that this was war, declared by a private company on a nation state. Just because Google doesn’t have its own army (yet), or that no actual physical weapons were fired doesn’t make it a... (more)

How to Extract Your Contacts from LinkedIn and Facebook

Facebook on Ulitzer If you have spent any time online using social networks like LinkedIn or Facebook, you know they can be difficult to grow your network and add contacts. But even harder is the ability to extract your contacts once you have built up a reasonably sized network. None of the social networks makes it very easy to get this information. Why would you want to do this? Several reasons. First is the peace of mind that you have control over your own data. Should you decide to leave the network, or should the network decided to leave you (either for cause or for lack of... (more)