Feeds

Why are we all still using 1984 technology?

US boffin offers his file wisdom

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Remote control for virtualized desktops

Today's computer file system is outdated and dead, and will be replaced by a set-up allowing users to access their data from any Net-connected device.

Speaking at PCExpo/TechX in New York, Yale University Computer Science professor David Gelernter, said today's "poor" information management tools were in desperate need of a make-over.

Gelernter told conference attendees: "Your cyberlife is scattered as if you'd emptied a filing cabinet out of an aeroplane".

He said finding files should be as easy as finding a phone number on a mobile phone, with the elimination of the need to name files and have them restricted to just one folder.

"There are no everything structures," he said, adding that many people had files stored on multiple machines, such as notebooks, work and home desktops, and PDAs, and were therefore often unable to access them at any one time, from any location.

And although there have been huge improvements in computer hardware over the past two decades, the same cannot be said for information management software, according to Gelertner.

"In short, nothing much has happened in core information management since 1984," he said. "We rely on our core information management on 1984 software. How many 1984 PCs do we have in use today?"

The next step, according to Gelernter, is "narrative management systems", where all files - emails, faxes, Word documents, photos, digital music - appear together chronologically on screen.

Geletner is also chief scientist for US software company Mirror Worlds Technologies, (you must have guessed he was selling something - Ed) which has developed this P2P distributed computing "stream" technology, called Scopeware. This is constantly updated on screen, with the most recent "file" appearing at the front.

It can also be used as a joint stream for companies, with employees getting a private view (including their own personal information such as emails) of the public stream (such as corporate announcements, meetings etc).

The stream can be accessed from any online PC, laptop or cell phone.

"It is designed for computers instead of for file clerks," said Gelertner.

"Today's computing hardware is spectacular," he concluded, adding that information management software needed to catch up. ®

Related Link

More information on Scopeware

Related Stories

How to trace stolen notebooks over the Net
Palm knuckles up to Gartner, sucks up to Big Biz

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
Euro Parliament VOTES to BREAK UP GOOGLE. Er, OK then
It CANNA do it, captain.They DON'T have the POWER!
Download alert: Nearly ALL top 100 Android, iOS paid apps hacked
Attack of the Clones? Yeah, but much, much scarier – report
NSA SOURCE CODE LEAK: Information slurp tools to appear online
Now you can run your own intelligence agency
Post-Microsoft, post-PC programming: The portable REVOLUTION
Code jockeys: count up and grab your fabulous tablets
Twitter App Graph exposes smartphone spyware feature
You don't want everyone to compile app lists from your fondleware? BAD LUCK
Microsoft adds video offering to Office 365. Oh NOES, you'll need Adobe Flash
Lovely presentations... but not on your Flash-hating mobe
prev story

Whitepapers

Free virtual appliance for wire data analytics
The ExtraHop Discovery Edition is a free virtual appliance will help you to discover the performance of your applications across the network, web, VDI, database, and storage tiers.
Getting started with customer-focused identity management
Learn why identity is a fundamental requirement to digital growth, and how without it there is no way to identify and engage customers in a meaningful way.
The total economic impact of Druva inSync
Examining the ROI enterprises may realize by implementing inSync, as they look to improve backup and recovery of endpoint data in a cost-effective manner.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Website security in corporate America
Find out how you rank among other IT managers testing your website's vulnerabilities.