Stories by Mark Gibbs

Processing, a language for visual output

It would seem that the computer science world is, in general, populated by firm believers in the idea that you can never have too many programming languages. I've covered all sorts of languages over the centuries I've been writing Gearhead and today ...

Wiretapping, whistleblowing and IT ethics

Recently a retired AT&T employee named Mark Klein announced at a Capitol Hill press conference that he had evidence that "An exact copy of all Internet traffic that flowed through critical AT&T cables ... was being diverted to equipment inside the se...

Why Skype and Vonage must die

Skype and Vonage illustrate what is wrong with user communications: They are "closed" and not standards based. These strategies support business models that are not in line with 21st century wants and needs. They have to go!

Outlook to iCal but not automatically

Is it too much to ask? All I want to do is to extract new calendar items from Outlook in iCal format every day at a set time. The reason for this is I am planning to buy a big, new Mac Pro (dual 3.0GHz quad core, dual graphics cards, 8GB RAM - yes, g...

CD fingerprints

An avid PC world reader wrote: "I was particularly intrigued by the fact that after ripping my audio CD to the MP3 format in WinAmp, it would read the song info and fill in the headers."

Hypersociality and texting

I understand that most service providers are the same. You can see it is in the provider's interest not to supply features they don't have to, and when it might impact hypersociality (which they make a ton of money out of) why should they?

The physics of IT

Science is how we try to explain the universe and what the guys who do science (usually called "scientists" but you can call them anything you like because most of them are pretty nerdy) really want is a TOE. No, not those things that stop your feet ...

A great, free VOIP system

Some weeks ago the Gearhead Underground Bunker started to fill up with some really cool VOIP stuff, including 3CX's free software-only VOIP PBX and a couple of D-Link VOIP DVG-2001S Terminal Adapters that convert regular telephones into Session Initi...

The imminent death of Internet radio

On March 2 the Copyright Royalty Board decided to raise the royalty rates for Internet radio stations. My goal this week is to get U.S. readers fired up enough to sign a petition and write to their member of Congress, and demand that this decision be...

Consumers, politicians, toolbars: Full of bull

I am reading a fine book: On Bullsh*t, by Harry G. Frankfurt, professor of philosophy emeritus at Princeton University. Now you may think that BS is a risible topic, but, as Frankfurt points out, BS matters.

We live in a beta world

George Lucas has been quoted as saying that "A movie is never finished, only abandoned." This is actually a profound insight and makes a lot of sense, because creative people always want to refine their vision to be as close as possible to the perfec...

Backspin: 2007: The year of being outraged?

The dawn of a new year should be a time of reflection, of weighing what happened in the last year and planning to make the next 12 months better. I have reflected on the happenings of last year and I would sum up 2006 as The Year of Not Enough Outrag...

Exploding heads and running in circles

You've got to wonder sometimes how people can open their mouths and say things that are so stupid, so downright transparently ridiculous and illogical that their heads should simply explode.

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PCW Evaluation Team

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre x360

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga 910

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

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