Clive Portman: linked

Antitrust: European Commission sends Statement of Objections to Google on Android operating system

Original article from European Commission press release:

The Commission alleges that Google has breached EU antitrust rules by:

- requiring manufacturers to pre-install Google Search and Google's Chrome browser and requiring them to set Google Search as default search service on their devices,

Forcing users to use the best search engine and the best browser? That's a disgrace!

- preventing manufacturers from selling devices running on competing operating systems based on Android,

Making sure Android apps work on all Android devices? What's going on?

I'm being sarcastic above, but, seriously, why do the EU think Android exists in the first place?

The US have Trump. We in the UK have Boris and the EU! And the latter is doing it's best to embarrass us in front of the world again. One for the Out campaign, this is...

Are the Lumia 950 and 950 XL victims of the Surface's success?

Original article from Jason Ward, Windows Central:

Ironically, many fans have decided to pass on the best Lumia's yet in lieu of what they are certain will be better devices next year.

Based on what? The phones aren't even available to buy yet and Jason has written these phones off as 'victims' of the Surface's success, supposedly because Windows fans aren't interesting in these phones? Personally, I can't wait to get mine. And, judging by the comments, I'm not on my own.

And then this:

What we don't yet have is pen. I believe pen input has an even greater place on a phablet than on a Surface for everyday scenarios.

I can't think of one everyday scenario where I'd like a pen.

Craft 2.4 is Now Compatible with PHP 7

Original article from Pixel & Tonic:

We just released Craft 2.4.2697 with a few minor improvements and bug fixes, and one really awesome improvement: Craft 2.4 is now fully compatible with PHP 7!

That feeling when you know you've picked a winner and it just keeps on giving. Keep it up!

ExpressionEngine + Salesforce + Google Analytics + Overbuilding

Original article from Mitchell Kimbrough, Solspace:

We knew from the client that in the beginning there would be only a handful of consumers of the API. We needed to password protect the API, but we did not need to support an extensive authentication layer to get this. Additionally, the client, at this early stage, did not need to charge for access to the API so there was no need for an e-commerce layer. The API was never going to be a read / write application. Instead it was merely going to support browsing and searching across the product and certification database.

In order to support the above all we needed to do was create an API endpoint in a normal ExpressionEngine template. To support both browsing and searching, we fed the data through our Super Search ExpressionEngine add-on. And because there were only about 5 consumers of the API in the beginning, we simply password protected the API url behind Basic Access Authentication. Don’t overbuild.

Those last two words. I enjoyed reading this article and it resonated with me because I'm going through a situation right now where this is really relevant. I'm working with a third-party's JSON feed and have been asking myself "What if?" much more than I probably should have.

ExpressionEngine 3 is here

Original article from Ellislab:

Having moved away from ExpressionEngine for all new projects, it'll be interesting to see whether they can tempt us back.

The control panel is redesigned and rewritten from the ground up... Some of the smart interactions include small things that anticipate your needs. The Create menu always refers to content, but what if you don’t have any Channels yet? The Create menu will offer to let you create a Channel instead of an entry.

I know Ellislab are no slick PR machine, but this blog post is their announcement to the world that ExpressionEngine 3 is ready. And they're leading by telling us the control panel looks and works better than it did. I know the control panel was bad, but, come on, is that the most exciting thing they've got to shout about?

If we're going to switch back, some essentials for me are support for re-using custom fields between field groups, less need for addons and one-click updating. I can't see any mention of the first two, and am disappointed they think the following is progress when it comes to updating:

Updates are simpler, faster, and less error-prone. As many users became more and more dependent on add-ons, what was once a quick and simple update became a bit of a chicken and egg scenario, especially before we adopted Semantic Versioning. Two basic changes prevent a world of problems: user-servicable folders, and not trying update All The Things™ at once.

With the new user-serviceable folders, you have two folders to replace when updating: system/ee and themes/ee. That’s it. You don’t have to pull any files out to save for later, and you don’t have to remember to put things back when you’re done.

Having chosen ExpressionEngine as our go-to CMS for several years, when it was the best in the business, I felt it needed much more than iteration. I've been told that updating from ExpressionEngine 2 to ExpressionEngine 3 shouldn't require any template work - if that's correct, I'm disappointed. While that makes my life easier for older projects we've already built with ExpressionEngine, I wanted templating to improve significantly and I don't think that's the case.

Fast iteration. We’ve previously thought of major versions as monolithic releases that need to completely change the software. The result is a product that is too long in the tooth by the time the next version is released, and too many new bugs because so much code has changed. Our mantra for ExpressionEngine’s future is iterate, iterate, iterate. Releases for 3 will come steadily, and it will not have a six year life cycle like version 2. We will go to 4, 5, and beyond at a much faster pace as we ship and deliver our ideas for what makes a great content management system.

I think a ground-up rebuild, followed by iteration, would've been a much better strategy if they want to attract new clients or pull back clients who've left for greener pastures. Instead, I feel they've played it safe, and by doing that I suspect it's not going to stop their decline to irrelevance in the CMS space, at least in my eyes.

How not to look good, by Microsoft

Original article from Andy Chalk, PC Gamer:

The Microsoft Solitaire Collection, which bundles the classic Klondike with other familiar variants like Freecell and Spider Solitaire... has ads.

You can make the ads go away, but, as you may have guessed, it'll cost you.

Why not just unbundle it from Windows? This makes Microsoft look cheap.

And separately, the ads on that PC Gamer page nearly brought Firefox to its knees.