Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Cloud computing

The idea of Cloud computing has been around since the days of 'Main frame computers' and 'Dumb terminals', where the programs resided on the 'Mainframe Server' and the user gave instructions and saw the results from the 'Dumb terminal Client'. These early systems only used text, shading and line drawing and were only on a private network. Fifty years on we are doing a similar thing but with pictures and movies using an Internet connection which is hundreds of thousands times faster, but the basic principle is the same. Still a Client, Server type of operation rather than individual programs on a Personal Computer (PC). In cloud computing the PC only has to be able to send a request to the main server eg Google, Azure etc and display the results back on the monitor. The main processing is not done on the PC and the PC is called a 'Thin Client'. The 'Chromebook' is an example of a 'Thin Client'. Windows 'RT' was similar but has been dropped by 'Microsoft' but a replacement could be Windows 'Cloudbook' low cost computer.

Libreoffice 5.0

Libreoffice releases a major upgrade on Aug 5. The basic uncluttered layout still looks the same with better usage of the side panel. In the word processor, photos can now be cropped inside the application. This feature has long been asked for. It is still a free open source program for Windows, mac and Linux. A viewing only app is available for Android but editing is in progress.