Browser uptake in enterprises has just released browser usage statistics for its service which is interesting in that the company’s clients are enterprises. What this shows is a much more conservative picture than we are used to: 51.7% of users are still on IE 6 even though IE 7 was launched in October 2006.

As web usability guru Jakob Nielsen points out in his Alertbox newsletter, web users are becoming more, not less conservative. The upgrade speed, which was 2% per week historically, has now dropped 1% per week with the latest browsers, he says.

it now seems to take about two years to move most of the users to a new browser version.

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What our readers are really interested in

There’s a though-provoking post from Jeff Jarvis commenting on the difference between what people say they are interested in, and what there really are interested it. (The inspiration is the Florida obscenity trial where the defence lawyer used Google Trends data to shine a light on the local population’s real behaviour). His basic contention is that people have always said one thing but done differently and in the world of the internet there is now more visibility than ever of this tendency. This should remind us to spend more time looking at our usage data from Hitbox (or whatever) and less listening to the "experts" in our midst – or even, perhaps, sometimes, our research?

Getting past inertia

The Point (from Malcolm Gladwell’s book, The Tipping Point, apparently) is a site which aims to get collection action past the critical point when it will work. Users sign up to a pledge (dontate $10, boycott a particular store, etc) but are only committed when the required numbers of people have also signed up. That way, presumably, prospective campaigns can avoid the ignominy of being the only one with the placard.

I wonder if we could run our business like this?

  • conferences only take place if the required number of people have committed to them upfront?
  • newsletters only get published if there are enough subscribers already signed up?

Interesting idea…

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Microsoft Office self help

My colleague Phil Harris points out a resource I hadn’t heard of – Office Labs’ Community Clips. The idea is that Microsoft employees and users anywhere can record simple "how to" videos which demonstrate in easy steps how to do things in the Office Suite. It’s a nice idea and could be a useful place to start the next time you can’t remember how to make a pivot table or change the master template on a PowerPoint…

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Salary surveys Web 2.0 style


Glassdoor is a new site which aims to bring the era of Wikipedia and user power to the traditional field of the salary survey. They encourage "insiders" to disclose salary levels and to rate the company and provide reviews to help others to decide whether to take that job offer. There is a give/get approach to information – you have to post your salary in order to see those from others who have already posted. 

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Times archive goes online

The Times has launched its entire archive, dating back 200 years, in a new section of the site. There are 20m articles, ads and photographs in the archive. I particularly like the interactive timeline and the way the PDF pages are embedded into the site, and surrounded by integrated content about the major events covered. There are 150 topic pages which feature subjected like Winston Churchill, the Crimean War and Scott of the Antarctic. Great stuff.

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