See, this is what you at M$ don't get. You don't "improve search" by introducing a big, new, confusing UI paradigm, you "improve search" by improving search! Similarly, I think those "speed improvements" in 8 vs. 7 could have been done without shoving "Metro" down everyone's throats.
Count me among the people who are going to squeeze every last bit of life out of Win7 we can, just as we squeezed more life out of XP until 7 came out and we could forget Vista ever existed.
Apparently, M$ thought that "Metro" was too critical to turn off. They're going to regret that.
Jeff is more widely known for writing computer books, including books on Turbo Pascal and x86 assembly language, Degunking Windows, and Jeff Duntemann's Drive-By Wi-Fi Guide, and for editing one of the better programming magazines of the 90's, PC Techniques (later Visual Developer Magazine), but his SF work is worth anyone's time. The Cunning Blood , his first published novel, is classical hard SF jam-packed with information and ideas, including a prison planet without electricity, kept that way by nanotechnological devices that eat active electrical conductors. (The inhabitants of the planet have developed many non-electrical technologies into a fairly advanced society.) It also posits life after death...with the effects thereof mainly visible at the femtometer scale. (You'll have to read it to understand what that means, and the significance that point has.)
Another group of his works involves the survivors of a lost starship that have built a new home on an Earthlike world...which has thousands of strange machines left on it by an unknown race, consisting of two pillars and a bowl of dust. Tap on the pillars 256 times, in any combination, and an object will appear in the dust. Simple patterns produce simple objects, like saws, knives, and rope; more complex patterns are likely only to produce indescribable metal "thingies," but certain patterns produce powerful objects indeed. The resulting world has something of a "steampunk" flavor in parts, with an additional strong resemblance to frontier America. For one of the books in this universe, he's teamed up with another local author to revive the old Ace Doubles-style book, with two novella-length works bound "back to back" in one volume.
He's currently working on a quite different novel, Ten Gentle Opportunities, that combines fantasy, SF, and humor in some surprising ways. Among other things, it features--I am not making this up--zombies doing the Macarena.
Side by side, both starting with a 100% charge, the Playbook while idle lasts a workweek with light use before the red light starts flashing at me, telling me I have to plug it in.
The Galaxy tab lost 30% of its charge in 10 hours overnight sitting in a sleeve while asleep with nothing running in the background -- no apps, no push email, nothing.
Now take both on a trip and tell me this doesn't matter. If you whip it out to use it at a customer site and it's dead it sure as hell does matter. And this is exactly the sort of massive advantage that I was talking about when it comes to QNX
.vs. Android (and IOS.) [...]
It would be interesting to run this same comparison of the Playbook's battery life versus the Kindle Fire, or perhaps the Nexus 7. But I'm not sure a comparison between the Fire and the Playbook is all that valid, because they're designed and intended for two different purposes (the Fire for E-reading and media consumption, the Playbook for "business" use).
However, since they won't even take the far-easier step of opening BB10 up to GAPPS...draw your own conclusions.
Soon, the only reasonable asset they'll have left will be their patent portfolio...and the best way for one of the other players to acquire that will be to wait and buy it from the bankruptcy judge.
It is possible, however, by rooting the Playbook, to open it up to full GAPPS capability, including the Google Play Store. RIMM needs to do this for BB10...and then they need to promote the hell out of this capability, saying, "BlackBerry runs all your favorite Android apps...and runs them better!" (Which is true; the QNX kernel of BB10 is far more efficient in an embedded environment than Android's Linux kernel is. This translates into increased battery life.) Karl Denninger has argued that this is the only way for RIMM to avoid complete irrelevance in the marketplace...and the company's performance since he wrote that piece in March seems to bear that out.
They could go further, too. One enterprising hacker has gotten (some) unmodified iOS apps to run on the Playbook. And it's perfectly legal, because the developer has just created his own implementations of relevant Apple APIs, and, under the ruling in Oracle v. Google, APIs are not copyrightable and Apple can't stop him. RIMM should acquire or license this technology and extend it to work with more iOS apps, and promote the hell out of this capability, too. Imagine being able to run virtually any popular smart phone app on one phone...with better battery life than either Android phones or the iPhone. (QNX beats the iOS Darwin kernel for efficiency, too.)
If RIMM does these two things, they could go from zero to hero in one fell swoop. If they fail to do either one...well, next stop is probably a bankruptcy court.
I'm a Lisp variable -- bind me!