The lighter side of IT
  • Slideshow: The World's Weirdest Portable Computers!

    Posted September 11, 2009 - 4:13 pm

    For more than a quarter-century now, inventors have been trying to improve upon the clamshell-style laptop computer case, with folding screens, screens on stalks, folding keyboards, two-screen clamshells, tri-fold clamshells, and more. Most never even get off the drawing board. Herewith, a gallery of designs from Google Patents. Are there any you would consider buying?
  • How 10 Famous Technology Products Got Their Names

    Posted September 11, 2009 - 2:34 pm

    Coming up with a great technology product or service is only half the battle these days. Creating a name for said product that is at once cool but not too cool or exclusionary, marketable to both early adopters and a broader audience, and, of course, isn't already in use and protected by various trademarks and copyright laws is difficult—to say the least. The makers of these 10 tech products—the iPod, BlackBerry, Firefox, Twitter, Windows 7, ThinkPad, Android, Wikipedia, Mac OS X and the "Big Cats," and Red Hat Linux—all have displayed certain amounts marketing savvy, common sense and fun-loving spirit in settling on their products' names. Here are the intriguing, surprising and sometimes predictable accounts of their creation.
  • Facebook pwns TechCrunch

    Posted September 11, 2009 - 11:11 am

    The number one danger of blogging is that in the drive to be first to report on a topic, you'll get things wrong. Usually this happens because of miscommunication or human error. This time it was deliberate!
  • 51-year-old Connecticut man attempts to sell parents on Craigslist

    Posted September 11, 2009 - 8:25 am

    Also willing to trade for younger models or new erector set.
  • Review

    A new way to learn languages

    Posted September 10, 2009 - 6:03 am

    There is a better way to learn a new language via a new online site called It offers a variety of techniques and lessons for moving among ten different languages.
  • No Cats for You! -- The Day the Internet Ignored Cats

    Posted September 9, 2009 - 3:29 pm

    The Internet is suspiciously quiet today, and it's not solely because all eyes are glued on the Apple iPod event. There's something . . . missing. No paws on keyboards, no faces peeking out of ceiling holes, no household pets climbing up the underside of a staircase. Today is A Day Without Cats, and it's oddly unsettling.
  • Software giant tangles with angry pachyderm

    Posted September 9, 2009 - 8:00 am

    Thomas Siebel faces rampaging elephant in Tanzania.
  • Who watches the baby-sitter?

    Posted September 8, 2009 - 5:44 pm

    We assume that our security software is there to protect us. Sometimes, though, as in the case of Sentry and FamilySafe kid-filtering software, the software is actually harvesting their information for advertisers.
  • The Triumph of the Geek: The Evolution of Tech-Obsessed Nerds Through Time

    Posted September 8, 2009 - 12:20 pm

    "I am a geek" hasn't always been something to proclaim proudly. No matter: Thanks to smartphones, Facebook and other must-have tech, we reign supreme today.
  • Thieves clean out Apple Store in 31 seconds

    Posted September 8, 2009 - 10:16 am

    The key to a great smash-and-grab job is speed -- and clearly the five- man teamed that broke into a New Jersey Apple store took that credo to heart.
  • Labor Day - the ultimate geek holiday?

    Posted September 4, 2009 - 8:15 am

    With huge geek expos book-ending the country, has Labor Day Weekend become the ultimate celebration of geek culture?
  • Worst co-workers ever

    Posted September 1, 2009 - 9:00 pm

  • Apple disasters

    Posted September 1, 2009 - 2:34 pm

    With the success of the iPod and iPhone, Apple has become celebrated for sleek devices that fly off the shelves. But deep in the annals of Apple history are a number of products that were commercial flops.
  • British ATM baffles users with comical Cockney slang

    Posted September 1, 2009 - 8:02 am

    Cockney slang is mostly out of use in the East London areas where it originated, but it's alive and well in one bank's ATM machine.
  • The GUI: The early years

    Posted August 31, 2009 - 4:54 pm

    Before there were shiny buttons and clickable interface elements, just the sight of windows could inspire wonder.
  • Microsoft practices ethnic cleansing with Photoshop

    Posted August 31, 2009 - 8:00 am

    Microsoft's Polish business unit decided to spice things up a bit by Photoshopping a white guy's head onto a black man's body (though his hands were left alone).
  • Fox adding Twitter to re-runs. Why?

    Posted August 31, 2009 - 7:52 am

    Fox TV thinks adding Tweets to re-runs will get you to tune in. Conceptually it's an interesting idea, but is Twitter really the right tool for the job?
  • Multitaskers bad at multitasking

    Posted August 28, 2009 - 9:56 am

    In a baffling study, British scientists have determined that those most likely to establish a multitasking workflow are exactly the people who are bad at multitasking.
  • IT Underworld takes on Windows

    Posted August 27, 2009 - 8:00 am

    From a beer-fueled expression of love for Vista to shoehorning Windows 7 onto a netbook and Windows Update fire drills, IT Underworld takes it all on.

  • How projects really work

    Posted August 26, 2009 - 2:47 pm

    The classic 'project cartoon' still rings true after all these years.
  • Back to school quiz for techies

    Posted August 26, 2009 - 11:17 am

    Start the new academic year with a pop quiz about the institutions where momentous technology advances were made.
  • IT mandates Apple tattoos

    Posted August 21, 2009 - 9:05 am

    And Windows users feel the burn of brand awareness.
  • Video ad to appear in Entertainment Weekly

    Posted August 20, 2009 - 8:27 am

    So you're flipping through the pages of the September issue of Entertainment Weekly and suddenly The Big Bang Theory's Sheldon (Jim Parsons) starts talking to you via a small video panel embedded on the page. Are you a) amazed, b) annoyed, c) startled, or d) all of the above?
  • Help desk denial of service

    Posted August 14, 2009 - 8:57 am

    DDoS attacks may take down Twitter, but apathy takes down the help desk.
  • Stalking the iTablet

    Posted August 14, 2009 - 8:18 am

    Our quarry escapes us yet again. But at least we're pretty sure there's a September Apple event to introduce... some new products or features?
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