The Get-Data Edition Thursday, May 26, 2016

A Traveler’s Guide To Taking A Smartphone Abroad, by Brian X. Chen, New York Times

But while the idea of disconnecting from technology when abroad seems relaxing, the stress of visiting a foreign country without a smartphone connection can quickly counteract the benefits of a digital detox. After landing in an unfamiliar place, you may realize that an inability to look up mobile maps or places to eat on a phone can be crippling. Relying on a printed tourist guide may feel primitive and immediately inform muggers that you are holding lots of cash.

So what to do? There are two ways to take your cellphone abroad and get data — the frugal way and the pay-full-price way. The inexpensive method involves some tinkering and planning ahead, while the full-price way is easy but requires paying even more money to your carrier.

End Of Windows CE

Microsoft Won PC But Lost Mobile, What Now?, by Tom Warren, The Verge

Microsoft will never truly give up on Windows Phone, but it's a dream that has largely failed. Microsoft is now facing the reality that people don't need Windows on their phones. That's a reality that has always scared the software giant, and it's now finally time for the company to embrace it, move on, and make great software for iOS and Android devices. Microsoft has already started doing that, and if it continues then maybe its mobile mess won't seem so messy after all.

The Smartest Thing A Tech Company Can Do? Don’t Make A Phone, by Klint Finley, Wired

This new generation of companies, in other words, realizes the smartphone wars are over. The winners are clear. Microsoft knows it, too. Now it’s showing it understands where the real promise lies by deciding to move on.


Apple Releases Firmware Updates For Its 802.11n AirPort Base Stations, by Dennis Sellers, Apple World Today

According to Apple's release notes, it improves stability and performance for its AirPort Base Stations.

Why I'm Giving Up On Apple's Podcasts App, by Matt Elliott, CNET

Because I'm usually on Wi-Fi, I usually just stream podcast episodes. But when I have a car trip or a long dog walk ahead of me, I will download a few episodes to take with me. And what makes the Podcasts app for frustrating to me is the egg hunt it forces me to go on in order to find the episodes I've downloaded when I'm on a cellular connection.

Pixelmator For Mac Update Adds Magnetic Selection, Retouch Brushes Extension For Apple Photos App, More, by Benjamin Mayo, 9to5Mac

There’s a smarter Auto Selection tool and a brand new Magnetic Selection tool to accurately and quickly cutout objects from a scene in a photograph. There’s also a brand new Retouch extension for the native OS X Photos app, integrating refined brush-style edits into iCloud Photo Library.

ClipBuddy A Useful Tool For 'Power' Clippers On The Mac, by Dennis Sellers, Apple World Today

This multiple clipboard is designed to log all clipboard data. on OS X 10.6 or higher.

Who Needs Git When You Got ZFS?, by Zef Hemel

While called a file system, ZFS is also a volume manager, so also takes over the job of partitioning your disk as well. Why is ZFS cool? It includes protection against data corruption, built-in support for RAID, snapshots and copy-on-write clones, and flexible and efficient ways of transferring data, e.g. for backups.


13, Right Now, by Jessica Contrera, Washington Post

She slides into the car, and even before she buckles her seat belt, her phone is alight in her hands. A 13-year-old girl after a day of eighth grade.

She says hello. Her au pair asks, “Ready to go?”

She doesn’t respond, her thumb on Instagram. A Barbara Walters meme is on the screen. She scrolls, and another meme appears. Then another meme, and she closes the app. She opens BuzzFeed. There’s a story about Florida Gov. Rick Scott, which she scrolls past to get to a story about Janet Jackson, then “28 Things You’ll Understand If You’re Both British and American.” She closes it. She opens Instagram. She opens the NBA app. She shuts the screen off. She turns it back on. She opens Spotify. Opens Fitbit. She has 7,427 steps. Opens Instagram again. Opens Snapchat. She watches a sparkly rainbow flow from her friend’s mouth. She watches a YouTube star make pouty faces at the camera. She watches a tutorial on nail art. She feels the bump of the driveway and looks up. They’re home. Twelve minutes have passed.

Feds Spend Billions To Run Museum-ready Computer Systems, by Richardo Alonso-Zaldivar, AP

The government is squandering its technology budget maintaining museum-ready computer systems in critical areas from nuclear weapons to Social Security. They're still using floppy disks at the Pentagon. [...] Although lawmakers of both parties say they are frustrated, it's unclear whether Congress will act. Part of the problem is finding money to invest in a transition to new systems at agencies across the government.

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Is Microsoft also missing out on the Car?


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