Atwood nails Netbooks, deVilla vents verbosely

Jeff Atwood nails the whole point of the Netbook form factor.

…netbooks are more than just PCs. If the internet is the ultimate force of democratization in the world, then netbooks are the instrument by which that democracy will be achieved.

Joey deVilla verbosely misses that point by such a large margin, I’m not sure whether he’s just trolling for traffic.

Slightly more capable than a smartphone; slightly less capable than a laptop.

I’ve worked on my year and a half old Asus Eee PC 1000H many a time and although it isn’t ideal for every day use, it’s still more than capable of handling development work. It also far outstrips my smart phone in terms of practicality – I don’t even bother replying to emails or forum posts a good percentage of the time unless I’m on either my netbook or my home PC, even if I’ve first viewed them on the phone.

When I read articles like Joey deVilla’s, I wonder what the agenda is behind them – it’s so unbalanced that I doubt I’d bother reading anything else he has to comment on. Somewhat of an own-goal if he really is just trying to stir up some controversy to create traffic.

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Comment, Linkage

Tech de Ra for real

A few years back when I was at Sony I wrote a short back-story for a fictional company in the game WipEout, called Tech de Ra. I don’t even know if I still have a copy of the original text – it was used for the most part to spark the imagination of the graphic design team and was never published on the website as intended. However, it essentially boiled down to orbital satellites with great big mirrors that focussed the sun’s rays onto solar panels on Earth.

The benefit being that the focussed solar energy would generate more power than the scatter-gun methods available to us now. I even had a bit about one of their older satellites being used to provide power and light to the dark side of the moon for the Lunar Parcs holiday complex up there (another one of the fictional companies I came up with!). So – pretty far fetched, I’ll agree.

Then I read this article on Treehugger last month; “Mitsubishi Electric Corp. and IHI Corp. will join a 2 trillion yen ($21 billion) Japanese project intending to build a giant solar-power generator in space within three decades and beam electricity to earth.”

Which is pretty much what I was getting at with the Tech de Ra back-story, and I think it’s quite exciting that it could become a reality.

This kind of thing has happened before with back-story content I’ve written. Back in November 2004 when I was writing the back-story for WipEout Pure, I wrote that the island the game was set on had been created by volcanic activity which ensued from an underwater Earthquake. I was told by my boss at the time that it sounded pretty far fetched. Six weeks later that infamous tsunami, caused by an earthquake beneath the Indian Ocean, struck. Needless to say, I went back into work in January and re-wrote the parts which were a bit too close to reality for comfort.

Conversely, I really do hope that Mitsubishi and partners can bring the orbital solar power project closer to reality.

Update: It turns out I do have the document after all; Companies – Tech de Ra

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Code Comments, Linkage

No harm in getting a head start

John Resig posted last night about the behind-the-scenes movement regarding HTML5 parsing, which you can apparently take for a spin by downloading a Firefox nightly build and enabling the HTML5 parsing engine.

I know I said yesterday that I wouldn’t start coding in HTML5 until it was actually an accepted standard, but I’m enjoying my front end coding so much these days that I’m going to give it a try.

Just for a look-see, mind – HTML4.1 and XHTML will do for now… but colour me impatient to start making use of all the fresh new mark-up that’s on the way.

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