How you feel about remote work depends on who you are.
A couple of days ago I started my analysis of this year's report of the German telecoms regulator (RegTP) with a first post on that we are past "peak telephony". The report also clearly lays out that we are past the "human subscription peak" as well.
10 years ago in 2004 there were 89 million mobile subscriptions in Germany. The peak was seen back in 2011 with 142 million subscriptions. Since then the number of subscriptions have gone up and down a few millions year on year and in 2014, 139 million subscriptions were counted. In other words there is no growth anymore despite the push for mobile devices in addition to smartphones such as a tablets that also have cellular connectivity.
So should we see growth in this area in the future again it will probably come from other areas. Machine to machine for example. In other words the number of SIM cards might from now on be a good indicator of how much and how fast non-human machine communication gains traction.
Ignite initiative has far to go before it catches fire.
I’ve decided to go back to writing some things at stoweboyd.com on Tumblr. There’s a lot embedded here, and of course the community I’ve become part of – who do not seem as eager to switch to Medium as I have been.
The Work Futures publication at Medium has become the place that I have collated materials related to the future of work, especially the materials otherwise lost at research.gigaom.com.
But I will be doing more long form writing here, and much of the short form I was doing at medium.com/@stoweboyd. At least until they allow me to point the stoweboyd.com domain there, and bulk import everything.
Also, as I am using Draft as a writing medium, and I can directly publish from there to Tumblr, some of the annoyance of the new editing experience at Tumblr is minimized.
Vannevar Bush's "library of a million volumes, compressed into one end of a desk" may sound quaint to us today. Bush naively assumed that immediate access to a million volumes would require the physical presence of those million volumes. His proposal -- a million volumes in every desk.
According to this letter in the Times Higher Education supplement, the Open University is closing regional offices in places like Leeds, Gateshead, Manchester, Oxford, Bristol, Birmingham and Nottingham. The author writes, "It seems to be odd timing when the political direction is to devolve power to English cities, with the university in an enviable position to take advantage of the possibilities that such devolution could bring." But the model of one central office with a bunch of branch offices isn't the same as decentralized. So what would a proper model look like? Each city and town with its own office, locally managed, with access provided to a variety of institutions, including OU, but also any other institution. Back in the 90s I called this 'the Triad Model' (I did not coin the term, but it fits perfectly).[Link] [Comment]
Many of us now have access to hi-speed 4G networks, with mobile operators around the world racing to roll out the latest flavours of the technology. But what comes next, and what will it mean for you and me? So-called fifth-generation or 5G networks are looming ever-closer on the horizon, and besides the technology giving faster speeds (and greater capacity), there are also expected to be billions more smarter, connected devices in future, all relying on networks that don’t yet exist outside of research labs.
Besides the increased speeds we should see, next-gen networks will also have a huge impact on our way of life, and the content and services we can expect to use. The race to develop 5G networks is well and truly on.
More people than ever before now use the web via their mobile devices, laptops and tablets, and this trend is only going to continue. Telecoms companies are pumping billions into new 5G networks so they can offer customers faster connectivity and better download speeds.
But as it stands today, 4G provides the best mobile data service in the world, but it’s still in its infancy even though it’s now available in dozens of countries. Today, EE leads the European rollout of 4G with a penetration of 36%, with O2 and Vodafone significantly lagging behind. Meanwhile in France, Bouygues (31%) has almost twice the 4G penetration of Orange.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, South Korea leads the world in the development and rollout of 4G networks, which currently stands at more than 60% according to Juniper Networks. Japan, Australia, the US and Sweden have approximately 20% penetration, while Canada has around 8%.
Accurate figures however are hard to come by. In June last year, Ofcom estimated that the US had the highest number of LTE subscribers standing at 140 million, followed by Japan with 51.2 million and South Korea at 32.6 million.
Meanwhile, 4G speeds typically offer around 150 Mbps, although faster standards such as LTE-A (LTE Advanced) are starting to offer 300 Mbps in some countries. Unfortunately as we all know, it’s virtually unheard of for end users to actually achieve these speeds. Ofcom surveys earlier this year revealed that average speeds were more like 15 – 20 Mbps in the UK although that figure may have improved in recent months.
But as 4G improves and the technology becomes more widespread, mobile Internet speeds of 1 Gbps or more could become a reality in the next 5 years.
5G is the terminology that refers to the next generation of mobile networks. But at the moment, it’s little more than a concept and set of standards, given that the attainable speeds of 5G networks appear to be constantly in flux.
Apparently, the Next Generation Mobile Networks Alliance has defined 5G network requirements as follows:
It is becoming obvious that a number of requirements will be driving 5G. Increasing data rates is an obvious one, with a special focus on improving fairness to ensure a good user experience at cell edges. Others are much lower latencies and reduced cost, for deployment certainly – Nokia.
Communications company like Ericsson, Nokia and LG Uplus are already well underway in developing 5G, but there is a considerable amount of research still to be done. But they claim that as well as providing network speeds that are significantly faster than 4G, they will be so fast and robust that no matter how many people are connected, users won’t experience a reduction in speed, connectivity or capability. Sounds almost too good to be true…
At the moment all there is to go on are lab tests and theoretical calculations made by mobile operators and equipment manufacturers. For example, last year Samsung managed to deliver speeds of 1 Gbps using 5G, and speed that makes it possible to download a 1 GigaByte (GB) TV show in less than 10 seconds.
But in practice, the speeds we might see as consumers could be anything from 10 Mbps to hundreds of Mbps…the dream of just being able to click to download content and have it appear almost instantly still seems a long way off.
Besides increased network speeds, one of the huge attractions (at least to the operators) of 5G is the increase in network capacity, especially as we move to an era where many of the devices we use every day are becoming increasingly smart, aware and connected.
It has been estimated that more than 80 billion devices will be connected via the Internet of Things by 2020 – everyday objects such as cars, washing machines, coffee makers and everything else that makes up our smart homes. 80 billion sounds like a lot of new devices getting online in just 5 years, so the networks need to be able to handle all this additional load.
It is believed by many that 5G in some form will start to roll out by 2020, once all the standards have been finalised and agreed upon, likely for commercial use and trials, with consumers following a few years behind.
But anyone living in London may have cause to be optimistic, as mayor Boris Johnson pledged in his London Infrastructure Plan 2050 that 5G will be available in the UK capital by 2020 – an ambitious target to say the least.
“London is earning a reputation for being the tech capital of Europe and that is why we need to ensure every Londoner is able to access the very best digital connectivity”, said Johnson last year. “Londoners increasingly regard broadband as another utility and I am expecting a wide variety of providers will want to work with me to make this aspiration a reality”.
Meanwhile, there has been some noteworthy progress in Finland, as a 5G test network is being built by the VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland and the University of Oulu in a joint partnership with partners such as Nokia. The testbed is due to open in the latter half of 2015, providing a testing ground for 5G technologies and applications.
“The idea is to trial different 5G concepts so we can gain the best possible understanding of their performance already before the 5G standard is set”, said Kyösti Rautiola, who is the research team leader at VTT. “But the test network is also an application platform for building new early stage applications and to gain better understanding of the real-world benefits of 5G”.
The test network will eventually evolve into a full scale 5G network as the technologies are developed, and it will later be expanded to cover wider areas of Oulu.
It seems that 5G is the future for mobile, at least that’s what the networks and equipment manufacturers tell us. In the UK, we are only just getting used to 4G, and it could still be several years before the majority of the popular has sufficient coverage.
Now that 5G is looming, we can expect the next few years to be filled with news of 5G test networks, trials and the eventual rollout. It would be fantastic if this time around, London is one of the first cities in the world to get a proper, fully-functioning 5G consumer network. Roll on 2020…!
I usually don't read much into job and degree rankings. The criteria are often arbitrary based simply on data that happens to be available. Or, a bulk of the rankings are based on survey answers where the population is questionable or there is a strong bias towards a specific field. But Fortune got PayScale to rank the top graduate degrees and Statistics PhD came out as the best. So boom. I'll take it.
The pay is similar to other STEM degrees but it's the lower-than-average stress that puts Statistics at number one.
Woo hoo. Statistics doesn't suck.
Maybe this is a good time to revisit my PhD survival guide. [Thanks to my ever so proud wife, Bea]
I'm not sure how this works exactly, but I've long been an aficionado of personal websites for everybody, so this idea - using some node.js code to create your own website on Dropbox - is a natural. Dave Winer writes, "The server is called PagePark. Of all my latest tools, it's my favorite. I love tweaking it, adding little shortcuts. Things that make it work really well for the kind of content I serve." See also.[Link] [Comment]
Inbox by Gmail was conceived as a new way to think about email, taking your Gmail inbox and making it as simple as possible. However, because everybody defines simplicity in email differently, there has been lots of discussion since Inbox’s release about it missing critical features.
After a post on Google+ from Android Police founder Artem Russakovskii on May 7th listing the reasons he can’t move his email to Inbox, including marking emails as unread, adding signatures, and quickly deleting emails. The team from Gmail responded Thursday night from the official Inbox by Gmail Google+ account. The comment confirms “We’re working on both Signatures and Delete. Pin and Snooze are both designed to replace mark as unread.”
This seems to indicate that the team is already hard at work on adding signatures to email, as well as making it easier for users to quickly delete batches of emails. It also tells us that marking email as unread is not a part of current plans, as the team thinks pinning or snoozing emails is more productive for their vision of email.
Ryders Thorn Photochromic Sunglasses are light sensitive, so in the dark they will remain clear and slowly darken as the sun comes out. They are lightweight, durable and very comfortable – yet do not cost an arm and a leg.
The post Best Cycling Glasses under $80 – Ryders Thorn Photochromic Sunglasses appeared first on Average Joe Cyclist.
It’s official, I have resigned my position at University of Mary Washington, and will be going full-time at Reclaim Hosting. It’s almost surreal, and I follow in the footsteps of the great Tim Owens—-whose hard work these last six months has made it all possible. And while I reference the opening sequence of The Prisoner above in honor of #prisoner106, my resignation was neither premature nor acrimonious, and it won’t be immediate. I will be working through September at UMW to ensure a smooth transition. What’s more, one couldn’t have asked for a better situation over the 1o years I’ve been at UMW. I had amazing colleagues in DTLT, a remarkable level of autonomy, and the best faculty and students you could imagine. I think the work I’ve done at UMW speaks for itself, and I leave feeling I was part of a group that truly made the campus a better place to teach and learn. There can be no greater professional satisfaction than that in this line of work.
As to why, it’s pretty simple and I alluded to it in an earlier post. I’ve been longing to explore some of the exciting work Tim and I have been doing with Reclaim Hosting and this is my chance. We’ve been growing Reclaim slowly but surely for almost two years now, and it’s at a point where we can both devote our full attention to what’s next. I’m looking forward to working more closely with Tim on a daily basis because he has been an unbelievable source of inspiration for me these last four years. I would follow him and his edtech work to the ends of the earth. I learn a ton from working alongside him, and I want that to be my full time job. What’s more, I think we complement each others skills quite well: he’s awesome and I can promote awesome pretty well
I’ll be transitioning most of my attention on this blog to exploring the work we’re doing with Reclaim, while at the same time working through what will certainly prove an amicable, but deeply emotional, breakup with UMW (that’s the real reason I need three months to transition ). I love that school! It has provided me countless opportunities to explore and experiment as part of my day job since 2005. While I am thrilled with the future prospects Reclaim provides, I will remain forever grateful to everyone at UMW—it’s truly a remarkable community of committed, talented, and generally awesome people. It’s been an honor to serve in your ranks for the last decade.
I love conferences that happen in my hometown, and I’m lucky that the Canadian Association of Geographers (CAG) conference this year will take place in Vancouver. I’m here now, and will come back after Edmonton (where I’ll be speaking at IASC 2015, presenting two papers) to do some fieldwork and participate in two panels that I organized with Dr. Kate O’Neill (University of California Berkeley) on the geographies of waste. Kate and I will also be presenting our research on informal e-waste recycling in Mexico, the US and possibly Canada. If you’re at CAG and are interested in my work, send me an email and we can schedule a one-on-one meeting.
I’m very grateful to Dr. Roger Hayter, the chair of the organizing committee for CAG 2015, and a former member of my doctoral dissertation committee, and I’m really excited to see him and many other Canadian geographers this week.
The rumoured split of Google’s photo backup service from the social networking aspect of Google+ has been discussed by Sundar Pichai, Senior VP at Google, since March of this year. We reported last week that the standalone service and associated app was ready for launch at this week’s Google I/O conference, but hadn’t seen or heard any details about what the service would look like.
However, as is common these days, this kind of information is hard to keep secret in the days leading up to a big announcement.
Android Police has gotten an exclusive look at the new app’s functionality and design, and it looks like a huge upgrade. From automatically tagging and indexing people and objects in photos, to powerful search functionality, this new app appears to be a considerable update from its predecessor.
Another big update to the service is a feature called “Assistant” that will give you more control over albums, and functions like Auto Awesome collages and animation.
The editing suite has also been redesigned to make theming your photos and common adjustments simpler. Basically every aspect of the app has been cleaned up and reconsidered for the modern smartphone user, and looks to be equally interesting to Google+ users and those who prefer other photo sharing services.
In addition to all the new features, the app also leans heavily on Google’s Material Design, and fits well with Google’s other built-in apps on Android. Though these screenshots appear very convincing, Android Police is careful to say that final designs for the app may be slightly different than they appear, but given that Google I/O starts on May 28, it’s likely that this is what we should expect to see at the keynote.
Twenty years ago (May 22nd 1995), Pulp released the single "Common People":
Unfortunately, that version is censored. At 2 mins 30 seconds the lyrics are:
You'll never watch your life slide out of view,
and dance and drink and screw
Because there's nothing else to do.
The version on youtube omits "and screw". This song has some great lyrics:
Smoke some fags and play some pool, pretend you never went to school.
But still you'll never get it right
'cos when you're laid in bed at night watching roaches climb the wall
If you call your Dad he could stop it all.
This was a defining song of the Britpop era and I can remember it clearly being part of an Oasis (Manchester) vs Pulp (London) rivalry.
Of course, you haven't made it until William Shatner covers it:
Of that Jarvis said:
In 2011 Jarvis Cocker praised the cover version: "I was very flattered by that because I was a massive Star Trek fan as a kid and so you know, Captain Kirk is singing my song! So that was amazing."
Apparently the subject of song is a lady who might have been named Danae, my wife's name.
There is a documentary about Pulp I haven't seen:
I'm now going to go listen to every Pulp song ever.
SPECTRE #007 (at London Film Museum Events)
Not sure which is crazier: that birds utilize spectrum frequencies to pass information undetected – or that different species are able to communicate with one another for warning signals.