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ExtraBITS for 5 December 2011

We have three additional bits for you to read this week, including a critical examination of browsing versus searching in iOS lists, a look back at QuickTime on its 20th anniversary, and a reality check on just how massive tech company data centers affect employment where they’re located.

Bruce Tognazzini Discusses Browse vs. Search in iOS — The venerable interface designer Bruce Tognazzini devotes his latest “Ask Tog” column to the question of whether it’s better to browse or search lists in iOS, such as in the Contacts app. It’s a fascinating read, not so much for his proposed redesign, but for the background of why aspects of iOS can be so frustrating for some people.

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QuickTime Turns 20 — Hard to believe, looking at the modern Web, that playing video clips on a computer was once reserved for the jetpack-wearing future. But then, on 2 December 1991, Apple released QuickTime 1.0. Twenty years on, QuickTime can barely remember when it was a much smaller window.

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Few Jobs for North Carolinians in the iCloud — According to this Washington Post article, Apple’s massive new data center in North Carolina created only 50 jobs associated with running the facility, and Google and Facebook data centers in the state have also failed to dent the unemployment rate due to a lack of technical skills among local residents. Construction-related jobs are created, but they’re temporary. That’s not to say the data centers won’t help the local economies some, but not as much as it might seem, especially in light of the massive tax breaks used as lures.

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