XP Users: Alternatives to Internet Explorer 8

I was just reading an article about old web browsers holding back the Internet. It’s a bit technical, but the gist of it is people want the Internet to be easy, intuitive, and instant. Technology is a balance: if you want something very easy and user-friendly on the user’s side, it often has to be very complicated and advanced on the designer’s side.

For example, when digital video came out in the 1990’s, you needed a lot of special hardware, software, and patience to watch a tiny video clip. The quality was often grainy, sound was out of sync, and there were a lot of adjustments the users had to do to make the video viewable. Today, we often watch several videos every day on a computers, and they’re plastered everywhere.  You don’t have to download anything or own any special equipment — you just click “Play” and the video starts.

Behind that simple play button is a lot of advanced technology. File compression, video encoding, bit-rate streaming, automatic resolution settings, and a bunch of other technical mumbo-jumbo are all in play behind the scenes to bring you this video. This technology took years to develop and continues to improve. However, any improvements need to have the proper tool to implement them. Older tools aren’t going to work, so it’s important to keep up to date. Continue reading “XP Users: Alternatives to Internet Explorer 8”

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Internet Explorer 8’s Last Hurrah?

Google Services to Stop Supporting IE8 on Nov. 15th, 2012

Those still using Microsoft’s older Internet Explorer 8 will not be able to use Google services after Nov. 15 until they upgrade to a more modern browser.

Google made the announcement last week on its Apps Blog as part of its on-going commitment to keep products up to date. Google firmly believes older products introduce  more security flaws, and newer browsers provide the best user experience.

“We support the latest version of Google Chrome, as well as the current and prior major release of Firefox, Internet Explorer and Safari on a rolling basis. Each time a new version of one of these browsers is released, we begin supporting the update and stop supporting the third-oldest version,”” Google mentioned in the post

Microsoft announced that Internet Explorer 10 (IE10) will be introduced on Oct. 26.  Google will therefore stop support for IE8 on Nov. 15, according to their blog post. IE8 users can expect to see a notice telling them to upgrade to a newer version after that date. Users of TOAST.net’s residential email system, as well as Google Apps for Business, Education, and Government will be affected. Continue reading “Internet Explorer 8’s Last Hurrah?”

Bringing Tablets to the Table

I was at a local big-box electronics retailer the other day and noticed there is still a big deal being made about the iPad.  Adults were swiping their fingers across the screen saying “Well, this could be very handy around the house.”  Senior citizens were flipping it around saying “Geeze Louise!  Look at this hotsy-totsy thing-a-mabob!”  Teens were texting friends that were standing right next to them saying “OMG DAT IPAD’S BANGIN IT 2M2H! IWO!”

The first thing that came to mind:  apparently I am only capable of understanding people who fall within my own age group.

The second thing that came to mind:  The iPad has been available for over a year now, and yet there is not a single successful competitor to the product.  It’s not due to lack of attempts.  Motorola released the Xoom tablet  a few months ago, the Dell Streak is available, Samsung’s Galaxy series is in stores…and nobody is buying them.  Tablets will be the primary way we’ll be using the Internet within the next few years, but it seems that Apple is holding all the cards at this point and it’s holding up progress.  It’s not that Apple is doing this on purpose…it just so happens that they have a number of factors that are working in their favor at the moment. Continue reading “Bringing Tablets to the Table”