by André ThomasThere has been A LOT of tech news in just the first month or so of 2012.
Apple has been raked through the coals over employment
conditions in China.
MegaUpload has been shut down and most of those
who ran the site have been arrested.
SOPA & PIPA have been stopped for now.
We saw some awesome new tech at CES 2012.
What do we have to “look forward” to?
There are even more things to look forward to, we just don’t
know what they all are yet.
Apple – Foxconn, Apple’s primary contract assembly company, has
seen a lot of bad press of late. There have been a wide range of complaints:
workers as young as 12 years old (possibly younger), 12-15 hour work shifts,
pay of less than $1 per day, and extremely unsafe/dangerous work environments. Why
is Apple taking the heat for this? They provide roughly 40% of Foxconn’s
revenue. You can read more about this in the New
York Times exposé on the Apple – Foxconn debacle.
MegaUpload – One of the most widely known online file hosts has
been shut down for alleged Copyright Infringement, Racketeering, Money
Laundering, and more. What does this mean for you? If you hosted files, that
answer is still up in the air. There have been a lot of complaints from Indie
artists and even those who used the sites for online backup; years of personal
photos/videos, and terabytes of independent media projects are in danger of
losing it all. Several groups are trying to get access temporarily restored to
legitimate/legal files. More information
on the “MegaUpload file retrieval” process can be found here.
SOPA/PIPA – In what can only be seen as a victory for internet
freedom, these two controversial bills have been stopped for now. This isn’t the last we’ll hear on this issue so keep your
ears and eyes open.
The Windows 8 Beta/Consumer Preview is set to be released
late this month. We’ve been playing with the developer preview on a Dell
Inspiron Mini and it boots in 28 seconds and has the new version of Internet
Explorer, IE10. There’s also buzz about the release of Office 15 to coincide.
Speculation (but little info) abounds
about new releases from Apple including the iPhone 5 and the iPad 3.
Unfortunately, not everything we’re seeing is good news.
There has been a rash of new (and extremely aggressive) viruses lately and
they’ve been targeting Windows, Mac OS, Linux and mobile devices alike. As
always, be vigilant! Make sure your computer/device is up to date (most updates
are security updates), make sure you have an up-to-date and high quality
anti-virus program installed, and be careful where you click.
As a word of warning, don’t be too surprised by tech issues
this year as solar activity is increasing greatly. The Sun is coming out of the
dormant phase of its 11 year cycle. Solar
flares can cause interference and interruptions with everything from
spacecraft to the electric grid, so don’t be surprised if you have issues with
dropped calls, intermittent gps signal, and much more.