The iPhone’s 3G is off, the Wi-Fi is shut down and my flamboyantly sadistic 19-year-old son has taken custody of my iPad for the next week. Out comes the network cable and I draft an automatic reply for email messages. As the witching hour approaches, I bid farewell to my 200,000-odd followers on Twitter: “Internet addiction check-up. Off-line for a week from tomorrow. Be in touch”.

Continue reading: “A week without the worldwide web”

There are many laws that help us to make sense of the world: the laws of physics; the law of averages, write George Osbourne, the UK finance minister, and Eric Schmidt, Google chairman. However, one of the more significant is Moore’s law, which forecasts that the processing power of the latest computer chips doubles every two years. This prediction has proved to be unerringly accurate over the past 50 years, and means that the pace of technological innovation is accelerating, not slowing nor flatlining.

However, it is not just the pace of technology progress that is accelerating. The role that technology plays in driving job creation and economic growth becomes more important each day.

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I used to think that each new generation of workers was pretty much like the last one, at least in big ways. We all want more money, more praise, more interesting work and colleagues who are pleasant enough to join for a sandwich at lunchtime.

Yet last week I started to wonder if 20-year-olds might be something different altogether. I had a conversation with a young man who, far from sharing sandwiches with his colleagues, has never even met them. He doesn’t talk to them on the phone either. Instead, Jamie Holmes has spent the past two years interacting with his bosses and with the people he recruits and trains entirely by text message and email.

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In the afterglow of Apple’s big iPad 3 reveal yesterday comes the somewhat souring realisation for its legions of European fans that they will not be able to use the much hyped 4G capabilities for some time, if at all on this device, writes Dan Thomas.

Sure, they will get the high-definition screen and the spruced up processor, but Europeans will not be able to happily “facetime” 4G LTE iPad owners in North America on super speedy mobile broadband. Read more >>

Sean Maloney asks the question that is on my mind before I get to ask it. “Do you think I’m better or that I’m not better?” he inquires, barely 15 minutes into our conversation.

In his case, it is not such an odd question. Two years ago, he did not even know if he would talk again after suffering a stroke. He had been running with his 20-year-old son, then sat on the bed in his San Francisco home and everything went blank. “When I woke up there was nothing. It was terrible, waking up like that and asking what was I doing with my life,” he recalls.

By then, the London-born Mr Maloney was widely seen as the heir apparent to Paul Otellini, Intel’s chief executive, who is due to step down in 2015. Mr Maloney had risen rapidly through the ranks at the company since joining in 1982 – but the stroke called his inexorable ascent into question. “It almost killed me,” he says. Read more >>

From the FT’s Business blog:

Fujitsu’s plan to enter the European smartphone and tablet market has a 1980s ring to it. By the early part of that decade, Japanese companies had already grabbed large shares of the markets for televisions, hi-fi, calculators, electronic toys, and digital watches. These days, Europeans are more used to hearing about new Chinese, Taiwanese and South Korean entrants.

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A list of hacked private data belonging to 537 customers, posted anonymously on the internet on Friday led Dutch telecoms company KPN to shut down email access for two million clients for two days while it reinforced security, writes Matt Steinglass in Amsterdam.
But it soon turned out that the hacked data didn’t come from KPN at all; it came from an online baby-products store called Baby-Dump (baby-dump.nl).

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In what the Twittering classes have universally seen as a retrograde step,  Sky News introduced a new social media policy on Tuesday, which includes an effective ban on its journalists retweeting non-Sky sources, writes Ben Fenton.

I haven’t seen the email myself, but I am confident from several sources that the offending sentence runs like this:  “Do not re-tweet information posted by other journalists or people on Twitter”. Read more >>

by Dan Thomas, Telecoms Correspondent

Google is taking Chrome mobile for the first time with the introduction of its web browser across the Android phone platform.

The company promises to make surfing the web a seamless experience from desktop to phone by allowing users to sync opened web pages, bookmarks and preferences across devices. Read more >>

Mark Zuckerberg

At long last Facebook has filed for its initial public offering, the most eagerly awaited event in Silicon Valley since Google went public in 2004. Having read the prospectus, with its details of how profitable and cash-rich the social networking enterprise is, may I suggest it calls the whole thing off.

There is still time to cancel its IPO and the filing provides plenty of reasons why it ought to, and why Mark Zuckerberg, its founder and chief executive, would probably be happier if it did. He could carry on running Facebook as a private company and would not have to justify himself to outsiders.

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