Weekend tech reading: Mozilla halting Thunderbird innovation

By on July 8, 2012, 2:57 PM

Mozilla to stop Thunderbird feature updates It would be incorrect to say that Thunderbird is dead. Rather, Mozilla appears to have moved the desktop email client from the hospital to hospice, and it's now up to the community to decide just how development on the app should continue -- if it's to continue at all. In a post thrown up yesterday on Mozilla chair Mitchell Baker's blog, Baker makes the grim announcement that, "continued innovation in Thunderbird is not a priority for Mozilla's product efforts." PC Magazine

What the WELL's rise and fall tell us about online community In the late 1980s, decades before the term "social media" existed, in a now legendary and miraculously still living virtual community called "The WELL," a fellow who used the handle "Philcat" logged in one night in a panic: his son Gabe had been diagnosed with leukemia, and in the middle of the night he had nowhere else to turn but the friends he knew primarily by the text we typed to each other via primitive personal computers and slow modems. The Atlantic

Microsoft’s downfall: Inside the executive e-mails and cannibalistic culture that felled a tech giant Analyzing one of American corporate history's greatest mysteries -- the lost decade of Microsoft -- two-time George Polk Award winner (and V.F.’s newest contributing editor) Kurt Eichenwald traces the "astonishingly foolish management decisions" at the company that "could serve as a business-school case study on the pitfalls of success." Vanity Fair

Ex-Nokia staff to build MeeGo-based smartphones A group of ex-Nokia staff and MeeGo enthusiasts has formed Jolla (Finnish for "dinghy"), a mobile startup with the aim of bringing new MeeGo devices to the market. According to its LinkedIn page, Jolla consists of "directors and core professionals from Nokia’s MeeGo N9 organization, together with some of the best minds working on MeeGo in the communities." The Verge

That was quick. Facebook shuts down Face.com APIs, kills Klik app, enrages developers Fresh from its acquisition by Facebook last month, Face.com is closing down its facial recognition APIs over the next 30 days. While such a move isn’t that surprising, third-party developers may well have reason to be upset seeing as just weeks ago the company said that it would continue to support them. The Next Web

Life after the personal computer A reader pointed out to me this week that the personal computer is well over 30 years old -- a number that has real consequence if you are familiar with my work. He remembered I predicted in 1992 that PCs as we knew them would be dead by now. I was obviously a little off in my timing. But only a little off. PCs are still doomed and their end will come quicker than you think. I, Cringely

Pirate Bay founder submits emotional plea for pardon After being convicted for his role in operating The Pirate Bay, site co-founder Peter Sunde should soon serve eight month jail sentence in a Swedish prison. Serving this sentence would be a disgrace to the justice system and a personal disaster, says Sunde, who submitted an emotional plea for pardon to the Swedish authorities this week. TorrentFreak

How software-defined radio could revolutionize wireless In 1976, two shaggy-haired college dropouts founded a company called Apple to manufacture personal computers. The company's prospects looked so poor that the third co-founder relinquished his 10 percent stake in the company for $800 that same year. It simply wasn't clear why anyone would want the firm's Apple I computer. Ars Technica

Introducing BitTorrent Torque Over a decade ago we introduced BitTorrent technology and BitTorrent clients, and the Internet was profoundly changed.  This week we are aiming to revolutionize the web once again by integrating the power of BitTorrent with the most familiar experience on a computer: the browser. Today, we are proud to announce the alpha release of BitTorrent Torque. BitTorrent

It never gets better There's an update waiting for you. For your apps, for your computer and phone and tablet and the box attached to your TV. Updates are so routine that when you buy a smartphone or a tablet, you don't just hope it will be better tomorrow than it is today, doing new and wonderful things that it doesn't already do -- you expect it. That's the magic of software. BuzzFeed

Web browser grand prix: Chrome 20, Opera 12, Firefox 13 How do the latest Windows 7-based Web browsers stack up? Chrome and Firefox each have three wins under this operating system; can one become our champion? Or will Opera clean house here, as it did under Windows XP? We set up a new test system to find out. Tom's Hardware

Blizzard timeline Our anniversary website wouldn't be complete without an in-depth chronicle of Blizzard Entertainment’s long history. Twenty years is a long time, and much has happened since the company first opened its doors. We invite you to read on and join us on a stroll down memory lane. Blizzard

Samsung said to plan Windows RT tablet for October debut Samsung, the largest phone maker, will release a tablet that features Microsoft's Windows RT software when the operating system debuts, people with knowledge of the matter said. Bloomberg




User Comments: 4

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Raswan Raswan said:

Cringely was, in 1992, a *****, and he hasn't gotten any smarter since. Reading him is like reading the NYT--fine if you want superficial engagement with the subject and the creation of an artificial framework that is supposed to make it easier to understand complex forces (but actually masks nuance), but worthless for any deeper, more complex understanding of the subject. They go for buzzwords and pizzazz over substance every time. No thanks.

TomSEA TomSEA, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

Peter Sunde (PirateBay co-founder) is living in some sort of personal dream world where the rules apply to everyone but him. He continues to reiterate that he committed no crimes when in fact, he openly flaunted and taunted those who were trying to protect their copyrighted material. Openly posting statements using his real name like, "you'll never catch us," "your laws don't apply to us" and "we can do anything we want, steal anything we want and share anything we want."

Now he wants leniency. Sucks to be him....

gwailo247, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

One thing is pretty sure, and this is proven by the track record, if you mouth off a lot about being untouchable etc, they're going to make an example out of you. Contrary to the personality of a lot of these guys, but staying quiet often has added benefits when you do get caught.

ET3D, TechSpot Paladin, said:

I think that Cringely is right, even though statements like these are always open to interpretation. But reading the responses on his page it's clear that people read him selectively. Many have an allergy to "PC is dead" and don't care what that's meant to say.

Frankly I think it's interesting to define what "dead" means. Vinyl for example still sells, even decently well, but I'd still call it a dead technology.

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