Why ChromeOS is relevant in the middle of a tablet revolution

Google announced this week that ChromeOS finally ... well, it's still not shipping. But there is light at the end of the tunnel, evaluation units are being shipped to lots of people, and both Acer and Samsung plan to pop ChromeOS netbooks in a couple of months.

Some people are impressed. Others are questioning the very existence of ChromeOS: Why would anybody want a computer that's totally tied to network access? How is this relevant in the middle of a tablet revolution?

It's not a paywall

A year ago I wrote a blog post titled Thinking about a paywall? Read this first. If you haven't read it, please do so now, as it's a prerequisite for this one.

Friday, the Augusta Chronicle announced that it's implementing a metered-access system using the Press+ system.

Four Drupal tools that solve 90 percent of your sitebuilding challenges

There are two ways to solve problems when building a website. One is to find a specific tool for each problem. The other is to find and thoroughly understand how to use just a few very powerful, very general tools.

When building a site using Drupal, you can go either route ("there's a module for that").

I prefer the second option, because it lets you invent instead of just employ solutions, so here is a list of four tools that can solve 90 percent of your problems.

Baby duck syndrome

Screenshot: Text-mode Citadel interface, still working after all these years


A mixed review for a no-name Chinese Android tablet

For some time I've been convinced they're coming: tablets and netbooks in the $100 range.

Not quite. But I finally got tired of waiting and ordered a $150 Android tablet direct from Guangdong: the iMito iM7. At 7 inches, it's exactly half the size of an iPad and, coincidentally, almost exactly the size of a 15-year-old Apple Newton MessagePad (pictured here).

A tale of an unsuccessful suicide attempt

It was the summer of 1969. I was in Lawrence, Kansas, scratching chigger bytes, watching Neil Armstrong walk on the Moon, and attending journalism classes at the University of Kansas.

I was a high school kid attending a summer program along with a bunch of other high school kids. I was learning to write headlines and run a radio show. My roommate was studying fourth-dimensional math, something about turning a tennis ball inside out without harming it. Other kids were studying the trombone or, judging from observed behavior, card-playing.

Has the paid-content bogeyman lost his bogey?

A couple of months ago, when a small Pennsylvania newspaper started testing Press+ technology, there arose such a clatter in the online journalism world that you would have thought somebody had set up a Mapplethorpe exhibit in a church lobby.

A tablet revolution: It's like it's the '70s all over again

Blast from the pastI first became interested in computers in the 1970s, back when cars were big, hair was long, gas was cheap, and beer cost 25 cents a glass.

Dynamic Web fonts: A long way from HTML 1.0


We've come a long way since I first started coding Web pages in 1994. If you read this post on my blog -- not on Facebook, Google Reader, etc. -- and use a modern Web browser, the first five words of this post are rendered in a font that probably is nowhere to be found on your computer.

Beware, journalists: Apple is not your friend

Decades ago I read a business book by Robert Ringer called "Winning Through Intimidation." Ringer is a political kook (he's gotten much worse over the years) and more than a bit paranoid, but he sounded a warning that should be the first rule of commerce for every consumer and every businessperson: Everybody else at the table is out to take your chips.