Each week, we review the press, highlighting and responding to interesting and relevant articles in the news.

Head in the Clouds

Last week, Google Cloud and SpaceX’s Starlink announced a partnership to deliver data, cloud services, and applications to enterprises with distributed teams. Starlink ground stations will be located within Google data centres, supporting the nearly 1500 satellites the company has launched into orbit. With Google’s Cloud Infrastructure and Starlink’s capacity to deliver high-speed internet around the world, the partnership will bring connectivity to even the most remote of remote working. As hybrid working and distributed teams become the new normal, having the capability to connect all remote team members via cloud and internet is critical for workflow and efficiency. This partnership capitalises on a need that is sure to continue, even after the pandemic subsides.

Colonial Pipeline

The Little Pipeline that Couldn’t

The Colonial Pipeline disruption that ravaged the US East Coast last week demonstrated a critical need to modernise and diversify fuel and energy. The Pipeline supplies 45% of the fuel for the East Coast, and the recent ransomware attack shut down the pipeline for nearly a week, causing fuel shortages, price spikes, and panic-buying (you’d think we’d learn after the 2020 toilet paper fiasco). This cyberattack shouldn’t come as a surprise. Most of the US’s energy systems, especially oil and gas pipelines, use outdated control systems with little to no sophisticated cybersecurity. Additionally, this disruption revealed a concerning energy reliance on oil and gas. Energy diversification is critical for energy security and implementing this could have eased the disruption caused by the Colonial Pipeline’s shutdown. We think there’s a silver lining to this though. For proponents of clean energy, the crisis presents an opportunity: a chance to highlight our overreliance and the faults of the aging oil/gas industry while promoting the transition to renewable alternatives.

Data from StatCounter

RIP Internet Explorer

Prepare your eulogies because Microsoft has announced it will retire Internet Explorer on 15 June 2022. Internet Explorer won’t just live on in our hearts; Microsoft Edge will have an Internet Explorer Mode to support both legacy and modern websites. Microsoft is moving closer to the Edge, that is, Microsoft Edge, as the future of internet browsing on Windows computers. Microsoft cites improved compatibility, streamlined productivity, and better browser security as motivations for the browser migration. However, Edge only holds a global market share of 2.34%, compared to Chrome’s 64.55% monopoly. Even with the retirement of Internet Explorer (boasting just 1.1%), will Microsoft Edge be able to keep up with its competitors?