Microsoft Ends Internet Explorer in 2022

Microsoft is saying good-bye to the Internet Explorer. The company has announced that from June 2022 on it will no longer pack the legendary browser with its Windows operating system.

The software company has been trying to replace the Internet Explorer for some years. In 2015, it introduced the IE’s successor Edge. It is faster, more secure and can display modern websites better.

The Internet Explorer was first released over 25 years ago with the Windows 95 operating system. At the time it was a revolutionary browser that proved to be a strong competitor to Netscape’s Navigator. By the beginning of the new millennium, the browser’s market share rose to 95 %.

As time went on, the Internet Explorer became slower and more unreliable. Users started looking for alternatives and found them in Mozilla Firefox and Google’s Chrome browser. Today Chrome, is the most popular browser with a market share of 70%. Only 4% of Windows users are surfing the web with the Internet Explorer.

Even though Microsoft is shutting down the browser, Edge will still have a special mode for diehard IE fans.

Words

  • announce = to say something officially; in public
  • competitor = alternative
  • diehard = here: those who want to use the old browser no matter how good new ones are
  • display = show
  • even though = while
  • introduce = start
  • legendary = very famous and popular for a long time
  • market share = the percentage of sales that a product has around the world
  • millennium = the year 2000; the beginning of the next thousand years
  • pack = here: to put software into the operating system
  • release = to make available for people to use
  • replace = here: to develop something else instead
  • revolutionary = completely new and different
  • rise – rose = to go up
  • secure = safe
  • shut down = close; not develop anymore
  • successor = here: a browser that has taken the IE’s place
  • unreliable = here: it doesn’t always work the way it should

London City Airport Operates By Remote Control

London’s City Airport has become the first major commercial airport in the world to become fully remote controlled. Normally, air controllers sit at the top of a tower at the airport. At City Airport they are operating take-offs and landings from 70 miles away. It is the first time remote-control technology is used at a commercial airport.

Air traffic controllers can see everything that happens from 14 cameras that sit atop a 50-m high tower. The cameras record everything that happens on the runways and can be set to pan around and zoom in on certain areas. Controllers also receive weather and aircraft information on their screens .

The technology was developed by a Swedish company and has been tested at Swedish airports. Several backup systems provide security in case the something goes wrong with the main computers. British authorities claim that the new technology is safe and will make operating an airport more efficient.

Aerial view of London City Airport
Ercan KarakaƟ (GFDL or GFDL), via Wikimedia Commons

Words

  • aircraft = airplane
  • air traffic controller = someone whose job it is to give instructions to pilots by radio
  • atop = on top of
  • authorities = the people or organizations in control of something
  • backup systems = computers that start working when the main computers are damaged or don’t work the way they should
  • claim = to say that something is true
  • commercial = used by businesses, not military or private
  • develop = make something new for the first time
  • efficient = to work in a better way
  • fully = completely
  • major = important
  • pan around = to move around and follow an object
  • provide = give
  • receive = get
  • remote-controlled = operating or working on something from a distance
  • security = things that are done to protect something
  • set = here: instructed, programmed
  • several = here: a few

SpaceX Lands First Successful Starship Flight

SpaceX, a private American space company, has successfully launched and landed its Starship spacecraft from a launch site in Texas. In the three previous attempts the rocket exploded during the landing phase.

The 50-metre tall reusable rocket rose to an altitude of almost 10 km over the Gulf of Mexico, then turned and descended in an upright position back to its launch pad. A small fire after touchdown was quickly put out.

The Starship rocket has three engines and can carry 100 tons of cargo into space. It is scheduled to bring NASA astronauts to the moon in the next few years. The rocket is also part of a more powerful system that will one day bring astronauts to Mars.

The successful mission came on the 60th anniversary of the first American, Alan Shepard, to travel into space.

SpaceX is owned by Elon Musk, an American entrepreneur, who plans to set up an American colony on Mars.

Artist’s drawing of Starship to bring astronauts to the moon
Steve Jurvetson, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Words

  • altitude = how high something goes up
  • anniversary = date on which something important happened years ago
  • attempts = to try to make something work
  • cargo = machines, instruments and other objects
  • descend = to come down
  • entrepreneur = businessman
  • successfully = if something works the way it should
  • launch = here: to send a rocket into space
  • launch pad = place from where a rocket is sent into space
  • launch site = place from where a rocket is sent into space
  • mission = here: flight
  • owned = belongs to
  • previous = earlier
  • reusable = something that you can use over and over again
  • schedule = plan
  • set up = create
  • upright position = vertical; standing up

IBM Creates New Powerful Computer Chip

IBM has created a new computer chip that will improve performance by 50%. 50 billion transistors can be placed on a 2nm chip the size of a fingernail. Up to now IBM, has produced 7nm chips. More transistors, the basic parts of computer chips, lead to better performance.

In addition, the new chip uses up to 75% less energy. This will increase the battery life of cell phones dramatically. The chip is also expected to boost performance in huge datacenters that need a lot of power. Faster graphic cards and speedier object detection on cameras are other effects of the new chip. Artificial intelligence, which relies heavily on computing power, would profit massively from a new generation of chips.

Even though computer experts are excited about the new development, it will take a few years before the new chip can be mass-produced. This comes at a time when a shortage of computer chips has hit major manufacturing areas, including the automobile industry and smartphone production.

For years IBM has been concentrating on chip development and sold its chip production in 2014.

Words

  • artificial intelligence = the way computers do intelligent things that people can do, like thinking and making decisions
  • boost = increase, make better
  • concentrate = focus on
  • datacenter = large building with many computers
  • development = making a new product
  • effects= results
  • even though= while
  • heavily = a lot
  • hit = affect
  • huge = very large
  • improve = to make better
  • increase = improve, to make better
  • in addition = also
  • manufacturing = production
  • mass-produced = to make something cheaply in large numbers
  • object detection = the way you find and identify an object or person
  • performance = how well something works
  • rely on = need
  • shortage = not enough
  • speedier = faster
  • transistor = a very small object that controls the flow of electricity

China Launches First Module of Space Station

China has successfully launched the first module of its space station, called Tianhe or Heavenly Harmony, from the island of Hainan. The module contains the living quarters for crew members.

After 10 missions to deliver parts to low Earth orbit, China’s space station is expected to be fully operational by 2022. It will be used for scientific and medical experiments. 12 astronauts are currently training to live in space for a longer period of time.

China’s space station will not be as large as the International Space Station ISS, but similar to the Russian Mir space station which was in operation between 1986 and 2001.

The construction of its own space station is seen as a further step in China’s ambitious billion-dollar space program. The first satellite was launched in 1970 and the first manned mission was carried out in 2003. Recently a lunar probe has brought back the first samples from the moon since the 1970s.

Illustration of the Chinese Space Station and its modules
Saggittarius A, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons

Words

  • ambitious = if you really want to be successful in doing something
  • currently = at the moment
  • deliver = bring
  • further = another
  • launch = here: to start a rocket into space
  • living quarters = rooms where the astronauts live
  • lunar probe= unmanned spaceship that landed on the moon
  • manned mission = space flight where people are on board
  • module = part
  • operational = working and ready to be used
  • orbit = to move around a planet
  • recently = a short time ago
  • samples = here : rocks from the moon
  • satellite = object that is sent to space and moves around the Earth, moon or other planet
  • similar = like