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News, analysis, features, podcasts & Live Chats by Gavin for The Register, Europe's biggest IT and science site

Geek’s Guide to Britain: boffin road trip!

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Britain is credited with designing more than half the world’s most important inventions. Scientists, engineers, architects and inventors in Britain have made their mark with trains, jet engines, TVs and the internet, achieving major breakthroughs in the fields of electricity and medicine. The Geek’s Guide to Britain is an on-going series for The Register I […]

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The Big Data wrangling CIO you’ve probably never heard of: But his kit probably knows YOU

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Firms like Littlewoods in the ShopDirect group, one of the UK’s biggest private firms, were trailblazers in retail, pioneering paper catalogues, home delivery and ordering over the phone. Today, cataglogues are out with 80 per cent of ShopDirect business done online – half via mobile. I interviewed ShopDirect CIO Andy Wolfe on the group’s agressive […]

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Mozilla re-negotiates Google multi-million dollar sugar-daddy deal

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Firefox maker Mozilla is entirely dependent for its cash upon ads-search giant Google. I revealed how Mozilla’s funding deal is now in re-negotiation.

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Firefox decade: Microsoft’s IE humbled by a dogged upstart. Native next?

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Firefox changed forever how we browse the web, cracking Microsoft’s iron-clad domination. 10-years on, Firefox isn’t the one that’s growing – it’s Google’s Chrome and web access via smart phone. I spoke to Mozilla’s chief technology officer Andreas Gal about the reasons for Firefox’s success and the browser’s Act II.

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The charity CIO who landed a $15m data re-org

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Charities are getting smarter at finding ways to make us give while donors are demanding greater accountablilty. Most third-sector IT languishes, so Plan International undertook a $15m SAP rollout to centralise and digitise. I spoke to CIO Mark Banbury on the overhaul and how he liberated a crtical project he says was “floundering. You can […]

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SAP, IBM snuggle up for HANA-as-a-service

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When HP bought Compaq, Sun Microsystems CEO compared it to “two garbage trucks colliding.” The metaphor was thrown back at him when his beloved Sun spent $4.1bn on tape-storage giant StorageTek. But what is the sound of IBM’s latest partnership with SAP, on systems as a service? The two on-prem  giants have been undone by […]

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HP’s Whitman rolls out canned predecessor’s PC plan

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Hewlett-Packard’s on-again, off-again divorce with its muti-billion-dollar PC business is once more on. Upheaval is a familiar tool used by HP’s CEOs and Meg Whitman’s guaranteed her place in the company’s corporate history, but why did she employ a plan that helped get her predecessor canned? I write here.

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Larry Ellison: Who’s the dinosaur now?

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Silion Valley’s longest-serving CEO Larry Ellison stepped aside on the back of repeated underperformance by Oracle in the face of younger, fresher cloud challengers. Weeks later he was on the attack as CTO, casting Salesforce and Workday as incumbents and Oracle the newcomer. Oracle’s secret weapon? The thing that made it a giant – the […]

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The PHD brain box who went web scale in one year

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Benjamin Hindman started his Mesos project as a PHD at UC Berkley in 2009, was poached by Twitter to turn Mesos into a critical production system one year later, and now – five years on – has gone into business with the man who brought him on at Twitter to build a commercial business called […]

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Worse than war – Russia sanctions over Ukraine

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Western tech firms tell me EU and US sanctions against Russia over Ukraine have had zero effect on their business; with a fresh round of trade restrictions in the air, the real fear is what comes next and how Russia responds with counter measures. You can read my report here.

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