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Submission + - How two bored 1970s housewives helped create the PC industry->

harrymcc writes: One of the first significant PC companies was Vector Graphic. Founded in 1976, it was an innovator in everything from industrial design to sales and marketing, and eventually went public. And alone among early PC makers, it was founded and run by two women, Lore Harp and Carole Ely. Over at Fast Company, Benj Edwards tells the story of this fascinating, forgotten company.
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Submission + - Digg cofounder Jay Adelson on Reddit's meltdown-> 1 1

harrymcc writes: As Reddit has experienced a revolt of its community in recent weeks, many pundits have referenced Digg--the once-mighty social news site which predated Reddit and suffered its own member rebellion. But Digg's cofounder and former CEO, Jay Adelson, told Fast Company's Jared Newman that the two situations aren't as similar as they may appear.
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Submission + - How Etak Built a Car Navigation System in 1985->

harrymcc writes: Thirty years ago, a startup called Etak released the Navigator, an in-car navigation system. It provided turn-by-turn driving directions despite the fact that GPS did not exist, and stored its maps--which Etak had to create itself--on cassette tapes. And some of its data and technologies are still in use in today's navigation apps. Over at Fast Company, Benj Edwards tells this amazing story.
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Submission + - Microsoft is building Surface Hub in a factory near Portland->

harrymcc writes: At its January Windows 10 launch, Microsoft introduced Surface Hub, a giant multi-touch computing device designed for conference rooms. What it didn't reveal: It's building it in its own factory in Wilsonville, Ore. Over at Fast Company, I write about the place and profile Jeff Han, the computing pioneer who's spearheading the project.
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Submission + - The Bizarre Process We Use for Approving Exemptions to the DMCA->

harrymcc writes: The Digital Millennium Copyright Act imposes severe penalties on those who overcome copy-protection technologies. It allows for exemptions for a variety of purposes--but in a weird proviso, those exemptions must be re-approved by the Librarian of Congress every three years. Over at Fast Company, Glenn Fleishman takes a look at this broken system and why it's so bad for our rights as consumers.
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Submission + - In 1984, Jobs and Wozniak talk about Apple's earliest days->

harrymcc writes: In 1984, Apple launched the Apple IIc computer. As part of its promotion, it produced a video with Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, and other employees talking about company's founding and the creation of the Apple I and Apple II computers. Over at Fast Company, I've shared this remarkable, little-seen bit of history. It's full of goodies, from images of Jobs and Wozniak wearing remarkably Apple Watch-like timepieces to evocative photos of early computer stores.
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Submission + - Tim Cook offered Steve Jobs part of his liver->

harrymcc writes: Before Steve Jobs received his liver transplant, his Apple colleague Tim Cook discovered that--remarkably--he shared a rare blood type with Jobs and was capable of donating part of his own liver to him. He offered to do so, and Jobs turned him down. The tale will be in the upcoming book BECOMING STEVE JOBS by Brett Schlender and Rick Tetzeli, which is based in part on Schlender's unpublished interviews with Jobs and which will be excerpted in the next issue of FAST COMPANY.
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Submission + - The threat of certificate-authority fraud, and how it's being fixed->

harrymcc writes: The Lenovo adware that's in the news today reportedly inserts itself via man-in-the-middle attack via certificate-authority fraud. The technique presents real dangers for the entire web, and most people don't know about it. The good news is that several fixes are on their way. At Fast Company, my colleague Glenn Fleishman takes a look at the risks and the solutions.
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Submission + - RIP, pioneering computer animation company PDI->

harrymcc writes: After a string of flops, DreamWorks Animation is shuttering its PDI/DreamWorks studio. Back in the 1980s and 1990s, PDI, along with Pixar, made short cartoons that were part demo, part entertainment--and helped pave the way for today's computer-animated features. Over at Fast Company, I assembled a mini-festival of the company's vintage work, originally seen at venues such as SIGGRAPH.
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Submission + - The untold story of the invention of the game cartridge-> 2 2

harrymcc writes: In 1973, an obscure company which had been making electronic cash registers looked for a new business opportunity. It ended up inventing the game cartridge--an innovation which kickstarted a billion-dollar industry and helped establish videogames as a creative medium. The story has never been told until now, but over at Fast Company, Benj Edwards chronicles the fascinating tale, based on interviews with the engineers responsible for the feat back in the mid-1970s.
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Submission + - On not going to CES-> 1 1

harrymcc writes: I attended my COMDEX in Las Vegas in 1991. Every year since, I've attended at least one enormous Vegas tech show--in this century, mostly CES. But I'm skipping CES next week,. Over at Fast Company, I explain why--and why I think that the notion that enormous shows such as CES were once more valuable than they are now is revisionist history.
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Submission + - Three key reasons for Apple's Mac App Store troubles->

harrymcc writes: When Apple launched the Mac App Store in 2011, expectations were high. But it hasn't had anywhere near the success of its iOS counterpart, and recently, some major developers have pulled apps altogether. Over at Fast Company, my colleague Jared Newman talked to developers about their frustrations, which range from technical matters (highly restrictive sandboxing) to financial ones (no ability to sell paid upgrades).
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Submission + - Khrushchev's 1959 Visit to IBM->

harrymcc writes: In September of 1959, Nikita Khrushchev, the premier of the Soviet Union, spent 12 days touring the U.S. One of his stops was IBM's facilities in San Jose, which helped to create the area later known as Silicon Valley. The premier got to see the first computer which came with a hard disk, which IBM programmed to answer history questions. But what he was most impressed by was IBM's modern cafeteria. Over at Fast Company, I've chronicled this fascinating and little-known moment in tech history, which will be covered in an upcoming PBS program on Khrushchev's U.S. trip.
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Submission + - The quest to restore your faith in humanity->

harrymcc writes: In the era of clickbait, journalists like to make absurd promises in headlines in hopes of helping them go viral--and one of the most powerful, widely-made, silliest claims is that a listicle, photo, or video will "restore your faith in humanity." Over at Technologizer, I've written a history of the meme (which has been booming for the past two years, although I found a precursor in a razor ad from 1930).
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Submission + - After 47 years, Computerworld ceases print publication->

harrymcc writes: In June 1967, a weekly newspaper called Computerworld launched. Almost exactly 47 years later, it's calling it quits in print form to focus on its website and other digital editions. The move isn't the least bit surprising, but it's also the end of an era--and I can' t think of any computing publication which had a longer run. Over at Technologizer, I shared some thoughts on what Computerworld meant to the world, to its publisher, IDG, and to me.
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