Breakfast Briefing: Sandy washes out Google launch, Surface RT’s Google fail and Tech City turns two
Good morning. The week’s first tech stories include Google’s lost Nexus launch, how Surface RT users are left without Google and how IBM hopes to reverse chip manufacturing
Sandy takes out Google’s launch
The arrival of Hurricane Sandy in New York has led Google to cancel its press conference today. The nasty weather means Google has delayed the expected launch of a 10in Nexus tablet – yes, that’s right, they’re copying each other – as well as a new phone. Now we’ll have to wait until the weather clears to find out exactly what Google has planned. All Things Digital has the details.
Surface RT users lost on the web
When Apple launched it’s latest version of iOS it was lampooned for the mapping service that meant people couldn’t find their way out of a paper bag. Surface RT owners might have similar problems finding their way around the web, with Search Engine Land reporting that the RT models don’t have a Google app.
Microsoft blamed the glaring omission on Google. “Apparently their search app doesn’t work on ARM devices,” the company said. “We just checked the app details in the Windows Store and ARM is not listed as a supported architecture.” Still, there’s always Bing. And the built-in browser.
Tech City two years on
Happy second birthday, Tech City – it’s been two years since East London was renamed by the government in the hopes of drawing digital firms to the area. Has it been a success? A piece in The Observer suggests it’s still a work in progress, with Rohan Silva, the advisor who came up with the clever idea – presumably after watching too many episodes of Nathan Barley – citing the recently opened Google “campus” and new CEO Joanna Shields as signs of Silicon Roundabout’s success.
He also admitted more could be done, including starting a local university and improving transportation. Sadly, the story also claims the area’s seen a five-fold increase in tech firms in the area, a stat we know just isn’t true.
Government refuses call to put Turing on £10 note
The Treasury has responded to a petition to put Alan Turing on the £10 note. The petition now has more than 21,000 signatories, and Turing’s name has been added to a list of potential names for future banknotes – but that list includes more than 200 names submitted by the public, including such varied figures as architect Inigo Jones, famed diarist Samuel Pepys, and singer Robbie Williams. Really.
While it’s still possible Turing’s name could eventually be picked, the Treasury noted that to have the issue debated in parliament, the petition would need to gain 100,000 signatures. You can sign the petition here.
IBM shows off nanowire processors
Shrinking processor features is becoming increasingly difficult as the connections approach a scale where they are only a few atoms across. Nanowire processors have been tipped as a possible replacement technology, and IBM has demonstrated a chip that includes 10,000 such transistors. The idea works, according to Ars Technica, because instead of starting with a solid block and etching away unwanted material, nanowire processors are built in reverse.
“Silicon is a solid you carve down,” he told Ars, “while nanotubes are something you have to build up.”
Chinese comms company ditches Cisco
Call it tit-for-tat, or irony, but Chinese comms company China Unicom has notched up a score in the cyber spat between China and the US. Weeks after the US issued a warning against businesses dealing with Chinese company Huawei over security fears, China Unicom has ditched Cisco Systems in one of the county’s biggest backbone networks.
It’s a familiar story that the Morning Whistle describes. “Analysts indicated that the product vulnerability and back door problems are the main worries of China Unicom,” the site said.