October 2010

Welcome back

by Volker Weber

Noch schlimmer

by Volker Weber

Klage in den USA: Toyota soll Bremsprobleme vertuscht haben

Und ich dachte, die Amis vertuschen ihre schlechten Autofahrer.

vowe kocht

by Volker Weber

vowe kocht

Wer bei diesem Duft keinen Hunger kriegt, ist entweder pappsatt oder hat Schnupfen. Mjam mjam.

Minsk Motion Timelapse

by Volker Weber

What is WTF?

by Volker Weber

A boy's dad just joins Facebook. The son puts on his status: 'WTF'. His dad asks: 'what is WTF?' Boy replies: 'Welcome To Facebook.'

[via Timm]

Brauchtum, neues

by Volker Weber

"Da bringst mia etz a Leberkäsn, a holbe Bija und a Brezn"

Wie geht es weiter mit OpenOffice?

by Volker Weber

Frank Patalong über OpenOffice, LibreOffice, Lotus Symphony:

Freuen kann sich Microsoft. Aus Perspektive des unbestrittenen Marktführers wird gerade ein Gegner von respektabler Größe zu mehreren miteinander konkurrierenden Gegnerchen dezimiert. Erst, wenn eine Software eine gewisse kritische Masse erreicht hat, erreicht sie auch die Masse der eher unkritischen Anwender. Das hat das Beispiel Firefox gezeigt: Was der Laie nicht kennt, das nutzt er auch nicht. Was er überall sieht und hört, probiert er gerne aus.

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heise mobil: Horchposten

by Volker Weber

Indien möchte gerne die Kommunikation von Blackberry-Benutzern mitschneiden. Die Vereinigten Arabischen Emirate auch. Saudi-Arabien sowieso. Alle drohen damit, Blackberrys abzuschalten, wenn sie nicht an den Klartext der Nachrichten gelangen können. Der Bundesregierung hingegen ist der Blackberry nicht sicher genug. Ein detaillierter Blick auf die Infrastruktur löst den scheinbaren Widerspruch auf.

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MeeGo 1.1 Release

by Volker Weber

Meego 1.1

Today we are announcing the project release of MeeGo 1.1. It provides a solid baseline for device vendors and developers to start creating software for various device categories on Intel Atom* and ARMv7 architectures.

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On heavy rotation: Rock Dust Light Star

by Volker Weber

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Ovi Maps 3.06

by Volker Weber

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I am going to use Ovi Maps 3.06 beta today. If all goes wrong, I still have a TomTom as backup. ;-)

Update: this worked really well. So what do we have? Best phone camera. Excellent navigation software with turn-by-turn instructions. Very good phone, as in "use as a phone". Software still needs work.

Nokia Social updated to 1.2

by Volker Weber

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Nokia has fixed all my complaints about the Social app in Symbian^3 on the Nokia N8. It now uses a very readable font and it also complies with the clock settings in the O/S to show a 24h clock. The update was suggested by the app, download over the air. Well done! And in short time no less.

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Social interfaces with Twitter and Facebook and lists all status updates in a unified stream. It also lets you post to Twitter and Facebook, including photos and videos.

Into the cloud: Virgin America goes Google

by Volker Weber

Today, we’re excited to announce that Virgin America is the latest company to go Google and switch to Google Apps. Over the next two weeks, all of the airline’s 1,700 employees based across North America will be moving their corporate email to Gmail, and collaborating more efficiently using Google Calendar, Google Docs and Google Talk. Their migration to Gmail will cut Virgin America’s email system costs by about half on an annual basis, in addition to the long-term storage benefits where the move into the Google cloud will save them over 18 terabytes of space as the airline continue to grow and add employees.

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Kids, don't try this at home

by Volker Weber

Real time email

by Volker Weber

Out of office auto-reply:

Thank you for your message. Please note that I am in several meetings today and my answer can be delayed.

That was a first.

Marco Dettweiler: Apple hat endlich das iPhone befreit

by Volker Weber

So soll es sein: Rein in den Apple Store, raus mit einem "freien" iPhone4. Keine Schlangen, keine Drängelei. Drei Jahre hat es gedauert hat, bis dieser Gang in Deutschland möglich wurde. Doch warum rannten heute angeblich alle zu O2 und Vodafone?

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Fuel station

by Volker Weber

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I must have been good recently. Not a single day this week without new stuff. Some vendors are getting smart. After all, I write about stuff that I like. This smart charger for instance.

Two years ago I got a Sanctuary. I initially liked it, but then it failed to work and we returned it. This Belkin Conserve Valet does seem to work just fine, and with a twist:

Push to start

You connect your devices, push the green button, and it starts to charge them. When the devices are full, the charger shuts itself off. Off off. No standby power. It can charge up to four devices with 500 mA each, which is a bit weak, but it does have this "green" benefit. You can wrap around excess wire under the hood, which takes care of cable mess. And last but not least, it's very cheap. Just found it on Amazon.de for less than 20€. On Amazon.com it's still $40.

I see more "green" products from Belkin in my future. It's their new stick.

PS: I removed the "Push" sticker. This is a keeper.

RIM introduces BlackBerry Bold 9780

by Volker Weber

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The Bold 9780 is a revised version of the Bold 9700 with BlackBerry 6.

It supports 3G networks around the world, includes Wi-Fi(R) with support for carrier supported Wi-Fi calling (UMA where available) and GPS for location-based applications and geo-tagging. It comes with a 5 MP camera with a full complement of high-end features including continuous auto focus, scene modes, image stabilization, flash and video recording. The BlackBerry Bold 9780 also includes 512 MB Flash memory and an expandable memory card slot that supports up to 32 GB of additional storage.

I am bit confused about RAM. 512 MB Flash is not RAM. The specs talk about "onboard memory", 128 for the Bold 9000, 256 for the 9700 and 512 for the 9780, which could mean RAM. In any case it's a Bold with Torch specs. Available next month around the world.

Question: when do we get to see a BlackBerry 6 upgrade for the 9700? And do we want it?

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Wirtschaftswoche: Erste Windows-Handys ausverkauft

by Volker Weber

Der Netzbetreiber O2 meldete gestern bereits "ausverkauft". Die erste Tranche der von HTC produzierten Windows-Handys, das neuen Modell HTC HD 7, sei nur gut vier Tage nach dem Verkaufsstart restlos weg. "Der Vertrieb wartet händeringend auf die nächste Lieferung", hieß es in München. Auch wenn offiziell keine Angaben zur  verkauften Stückzahl zu haben sind, gehen Branchenbeobachter davon aus, dass O2 binnen der ersten Tage mindestens eine fünfstellige Stückzahl abgesetzt habe.

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GPS Golf-Armbanduhr

by Volker Weber

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Das neue Approach S1 ist die erste GPS-fähige Golf-Armbanduhr des Navigationsspezialisten, dass ... präzise die Distanz bis Anfang, Mitte und Ende Grün misst. Auf dem praktischen Golfprofi sind bereits fast 5.000 europäische Golfplätze ... vorinstalliert.

Ist das erlaubt? :-)

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About Sonos Controllers

by Volker Weber

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Sonos offers their own controller in a stylish little aluminum shell. It works really well, but it is kind of expensive. Not so much because Sonos would make a huge profit, but because they do not enjoy economies of scale. No matter what, Sonos could never make a controller at the same price point as Apple hits for its iPods.

Since Sonos wants to make their players affordable to people who would not want to buy the Sonos hardware controllers, they also provide a free software for iPhone, iPod touch and iPad. You bring the hardware, Sonos provides the software. And then there are the desktop controllers for Mac and PC.

So, what's next?

I don't have any inside knowledge, and if, I could not share with you. If you look at what positions Sonos is hiring, then an Android controller is quite likely. If it were imminent though, I'd probably have seen a beta. Then what about other platforms? Blackberry? Support nightmare due to draconian security policies. Windows Phone 7? Too early. Symbian? Well, well, well.

Here is what I would do, if I had to plan for the future.

Did you notice that all 3rd party efforts hit a wall, when it comes to music services on the Sonos platform? That is due to the fact that Sonos has some proprietary information they cannot share with you. Otherwise the music services would not be available on Sonos.

I would encapsulate that knowledge in binary libraries for as many platforms as possible and then license them for free to interested parties. I would also supply some artwork Sonos is using in their own controllers. Good developers are often lousy designers, and we want pretty controllers, don't we?

These controllers aren't exactly rocket science, but Sonos has to test them against all existing hardware and provide translations into all supported languages. 3rd party efforts could be a bit more relaxed under the release early, release often paradigm. Sonos does not do that. They hardly ever have to publish a bug fix. They always test until it just works.

iPhone im deutschen Apple Store

by Volker Weber

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Dein iPhone kommt ohne SIM-Karte, wenn du es im Apple Online Store kaufst. So kannst du dich für einen Mobilfunkanbieter deiner Wahl entscheiden und diesen auch jederzeit wechseln. Hast du Fragen? Ruf unsere iPhone Experten unter der folgenden Nummer an: 0800 2000 136

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Screenshots of Windows 3.1 running on the iPad with the now-banned iOS DOS emulator

by Volker Weber

Christo van Gemert just sent me these screenshots of his iPad running Windows 3.1 using a DOS emulator that appeared briefly on the iTunes App Store last night. Apple soon realised that the application would allow people to run thousands of DOS applications and games - not to mention early versions of Windows - and soon pulled it, unfortunately.

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Pressemitteilung des Tages

by Volker Weber

Sehr geehrte Damen und Herren, anbei finden Sie die Pressemitteilung zu dem Geschäftsführerwechsel der Oridian GmbH, sowie zwei Fotos.

Wow.

Über eine Veröffentlichung ihrerseits würde ich mich sehr freuen.

Die Sensation bringen wir sofort. Das ist jetzt aber etwas hinderlich:

***This e-mail message is for the sole use of the intended recipient(s) and contains confidential and/or privileged information belonging to Online Media Solutions, Ltd. or its subsidiaries, customers or partners. Any unauthorized review, use, copying, disclosure or distribution of this message is strictly prohibited. If you are not an intended recipient of this message, please contact the sender by reply e-mail and destroy all soft and hard copies of the message and any attachments. Thank you for your cooperation.***

Zwei Minuten später kommt die Meldung nochmal. Diesmal mit den versprochenen Anhängen.

mv * /dev/null

Apple delays white iPhone until next spring

by Volker Weber

Oct 26 (Reuters) - Apple Inc (AAPL.O) said on Tuesday that it would delay release of its eagerly anticipated white iPhone again, this time until next spring.

This might as well be the iPhone 5.

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Shot on an N8

by Volker Weber

With "some" supporting equipment. :-)

Wer hat sich denn schon zur Heise Netze Tour angemeldet?

by Volker Weber

heise netze

Habe zur Erinnerung noch mal ein Banner geschaltet.

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Darth Beethoven

by Volker Weber

Google TV is coming to 10,000 lucky developers

by Volker Weber

We want to encourage a new generation of TV developers to come forward to make this vision a reality. Which is why, over the next few weeks, we’re planning to give away 10,000 Google TV devices to help developers start building for TV.

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bluelectric: Sau, durchs Dorf getrieben

by Volker Weber

Die verlorene Ehre eines Bloggers? Blogdorf in Gefahr? Ihr habt sie doch nicht mehr alle.

Das schöne an Konstantin's Beiträgen ist, dass ich immer so heftig nicken kann. Ich meine jetzt, wenn er nicht wieder seine Zeit mit Computer-Basteleien verplempert (rein in die Kartoffeln, raus aus den Kartoffeln.) :-)

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Stephen Colebourne: Babylon 5 and the Great War of Java

by Volker Weber

Because it really is "The dawn of the third age of Java". Its arriving much faster than we expected. And it looks very much like decline into COBOL from where I'm standing.

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The BlackBerry Playbook lives

by Volker Weber

This does not look so much like smoke and mirrors like the BBDevCon announcement did. Bonus: RIM-CoCEO Mike Laziridis announced at Adove AIR Max that each developer who submits an AIR app that gets accepted in BlackBerry Appworld will receive a free Playbook. Get those SDKs rolling.

You will watch it twice. At least.

by Volker Weber

Vodafone und O2 buhlen um iPhone-Kunden

by Volker Weber

FAZ-Redakteur Holger Schmidt vergleicht die neuen iPhone Tarife:

Das Monopol der Deutschen Telekom für den Vertrieb des Apple-Smartphones iPhone ist gefallen. Von Mittwoch an verkaufen auch Vodafone und O2 offiziell das Apple-Telefon. Während Vodafone das Gerät ebenso wie die Telekom nur zusammen mit einem Mobilfunkvertrag abgibt, ist das iPhone bei O2 auch ohne diese Bindung zu haben. Auch Apple beginnt am Mittwoch mit dem vertragsfreien Vertrieb des iPhone 4 (16 GB) zum Preis von 629 Euro und unterbietet damit den günstigsten Anbieter O2 noch um 20 Euro. Wer allerdings gehofft hat, das Ende des Vertriebsmonopols werde das iPhone zum Schnäppchen machen und einen deutlichen Tarifrutsch auslösen, wird enttäuscht:

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Sonos ships the Wireless Dock 100

by Volker Weber

Sonos Wireless Dock 100

When I first heard about this product I immediately thought this will be on the Xmas wish list of every person who has both a Sonos and an iPod/iPhone. When you dock an iPod or an iPhone, it shows up on your Sonos remote under a new category:

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Starting there you can play anything from that device on any group of ZonePlayers in your house. But there is a difference to other sources. The iPod is seen as a line-in. You can control what the iPod is playing, but you can't get at the files. That is why you can only play to one group of players. It also does not build a queue, since you are not talking to a ZonePlayer but to an iPod. Of course you can access any playlist or album on the device.

There is a better use case: a friend visits or you come home while the iPod is playing music or a podcast. You just place it in the wireless dock, and it continues to play over a preset ZonePlayer like so:

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The dock uses the same power supply as the ZoneBridge. It charges your Apple device but does not connect to your Mac or PC, so you cannot sync through it. It has volume controls at the side, a connect button in the back and you can fit any iPod/iPhone adapter on the top. The dock connects to your wireless SonosNet, so it has to be in the vicinity of an active SonosNet component like a ZonePlayer or a ZoneBridge, which can be across the room or in the next room. Since the dock itself is an active component it will increase the range of your SonosNet mesh.

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PS: I had some difficulties with a pre-production dock and a 4th generation iPod touch. It just would not fit the dock connector. No such difficulties on the final product. Keep in mind that the 4th generation iPod touch is not officially supported, due to the fact that it could not be throughly tested. All versions of the iPhone are, iPod nano 3rd 4th and 5th, as well as iPod classic and iPod touch 1st 2nd and 3rd.

Fun project for today: install iLife '11 and learn the new features

by Volker Weber

Apple iLife '11

Windows Phone 7 Connector for Mac

by Volker Weber

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Out in beta. And it just works. The most un-Microsoft software I have seen so far. Small download, no reboot required after install. While I would prefer the phone to be mountable as a drive, this does everything I need. Import photos into iPhoto, sync from iPhoto and iTunes. Nice!

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Nokia Map Loader is just one everlasting nightmare

by Volker Weber

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Open seats at ILUG

by Volker Weber

The ILUG agenda is out, and it is an impressive one. I understand there are still a few seats open, so register while you can. If you did register and find yourself unable to come, make sure you tell the organizers so they can give your seat to somebody else. Registering and not attending a free event is bad kharma. You may find yourself in tech support in your next life.

I cannot make it myself since it collides with a conference I have to speak at. I don't command a private jet, so coming to ILUG is out of the question.

What happened at Lotus PR in July?

by Volker Weber

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Sorry IBM, but these are not valid IP addresses

by Volker Weber

Treat QA as an expense center and decide to reduce costs. Result:

Server.Task = SMTP Server: Providing service for 123.45.678.910
Server.Task = SMTP Server: Providing service for 123.45.678.911
Server.Task = SMTP Server: Providing service for 123.45.678.912

Hint: IP v4 addresses are 32 bit, expressed as 4 octets. So they only go to 255.

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Ray Ozzie to Microsoft: "Dawn of a New Day"

by Volker Weber

To: Executive Staff and direct reports
Date: October 28, 2010
From: Ray Ozzie
Subject: Dawn of a New Day

A direct blow into the face of those who want to do business as usual.

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Bequem

by Volker Weber

Bequem

Screen rotation lock

by Volker Weber

I think the iPhone was the first phone to use an orientation sensor to rotate its display from portrait to landscape and back. Great feature if you are standing or sitting upright. Not so much, if you are lying down or are resting on your side. That's where you need a lock that turns off that rotation. The iPad currently has that lock above the volume rocker, but with iOS 4.2 that goes away and is being replaced with a mute switch like the iPhone has:

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The reason of course is that iOS 4.2 provides that capability on the screen. Double tap the home button, swipe right, tap the first icon, tap the home button. That is four to five actions depending on how you count them. I would really like to ask Apple to make the switch configurable. I strongly prefer the rotation lock over the mute switch configuration.

One of the great features of the BlackBerry Torch is that the slider provides a similar experience. Slide it open and it will force the display to portrait. You can't force it to landscape though. The Palm Pre can be hacked to turn the orientation sensor off by sliding it open. In that case the screen is just locked in its current position. I find that feature to be indispensable on both the Torch and the Pre.

Windows Phone 7 and Nokia N8 don't seem to have that capability.

BlackBerry Playbook SDKs become available

by Volker Weber


Today you can download beta versions of:

There are still a few missing:

Coming soon: support for content and applications using Adobe® Flash® 10.1 and HTML5 with the BlackBerry PlayBook Simulator with the BlackBerry Browser.

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Achtung

by Volker Weber

Achtung
Photo: vowe

Symbian is dead. Long live Symbian.

by Volker Weber

There are two reasons why Nokia won’t be abandoning Symbian anytime soon.

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Seaweed

by Volker Weber

[via Ortwin]

AnandTech :: The Windows Phone 7 Review

by Volker Weber

There's a lot of good to say about Windows Phone 7. ... And unlike previous Microsoft OS launches, there’s no caveat necessary. Windows Phone 7 is both functional and attractive.

Anand and Brian post the ultimate Windows Phone 7 review. I agree with most of their findings. And while you read it, the apps come drizzling in. Twitter, Facebook, Last.fm, Adobe Reader, Yelp, the list goes on and on.

Ladies and gentlemen, Microsoft has a winner.

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iPhone ab nächsten Mittwoch bei O2

by Volker Weber

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Keine Vertragsbindung, kein Netlock oder SIMlock. Einfach ein Handy im Ratenverkauf.

Dazu, wer will, ein Datentarif* für 10 Euro im Monat, + 15 ct für die Gesprächsminute oder SMS, mit einem Kostendeckel für alle Gespräche und SMS bei 50 Euro. Für ein iPhone 4 mit 16 GB also von 25+10 bis maximal 25+10+50 Euro im Monat, je nach Telefonaten und SMS. Tarif monatlich kündbar. Und nach zwei Jahren fallen dann die 25 Euro pro Monat weg. Dann sind es 10 bis 60 Euro.

Wie verarscht muss sich ein Telekom-Kunde eigentlich vorkommen?

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*) Ich brauche übrigens monatlich ca 250 MB außerhalb von WLAN-Netzen.

Gooood morning

by Volker Weber

Amazon Web Services Free Usage Tier

by Volker Weber

To help new AWS customers get started in the cloud, AWS is introducing a new free usage tier. Beginning November 1, new AWS customers will be able to run a free Amazon EC2 Micro Instance for a year, while also leveraging a new free usage tier for Amazon S3, Amazon Elastic Block Store, Amazon Elastic Load Balancing, and AWS data transfer. AWS’s free usage tier can be used for anything you want to run in the cloud: launch new applications, test existing applications in the cloud, or simply gain hands-on experience with AWS.

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Lotus Symphony Version 3 is now available

by Volker Weber

After many months of extended testing in beta and great feedback from our community of users we are pleased to officially release Lotus Symphony Version 3.

You need an IBM ID to download. Or you need to register to download. Whatever.

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Tweet des Tages

by Volker Weber

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Auch nicht schlecht:

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Complexity kills

by Volker Weber

Stuart notices (1,2):

So interesting to compare the route Apple is taking with OS X apps (instant download/install/update) with IBM's Eclipse-based app focus. Everything about IBM software shouts 'weight' (Eclipse, WebSphere, DB2, MQ), everything about iOS/OSX10.7 yells 'agile'. #whosright?

Stuart is mixing server and client software. Let's look at the client:

Example: in theory, IBM could use an Eclipse update site to slipstream updates into Notes, Sametime, etc. In practice you have a mess of different Expeditor runtimes. Which means customers have to do full scale rollouts for maintenance releases.

On the client, simplicity wins. Big time.

Free BlackBerry Enterprise Server for Domino to become available in November

by Volker Weber

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In February I wrote:

BES Express is unlimited, comes with fewer IT Policies (35 instead of 450), and supports Exchange 2003, 2007, 2010 and Small Business Server 2003 and 2008. It does not support clients for Instant Messaging, Mobile Voice or the Lotus portfolio.

No support for Domino so far. But next month, RIM will make the same server available, also free of charge, for Domino servers. This has been announced by RIM today at an IBM event in Stuttgart. I am going to wait until its available for download before I run it on Heise, and for now, you have to take my word for it.

Apple makes Facetime available on the Mac

by Volker Weber

Apple has a free Facetime beta for the Mac. You can call other Macs or iOS devices. You need to login with your Apple ID and password, and then Apple sends you a mail to verify that ID. Did not work for me, since id.apple.com is overloaded on the https port. If you are on a safe network, just remove the s and call the site on the http port.

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So kann man das auch sehen

by Volker Weber

So kann man das auch sehen
Photo: vowe

HP announces webOS 2.0 and Palm Pre 2

by Volker Weber

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If you just bought a Pre Plus in Germany, don't feel bad about it. Looks like none of the German operators has bought into the Pre 2 yet. It's going to be available at the end of the week in France, but there are no announcements for Germany (yet). Looks like the operators are busy pushing the iPhone 4, and to a lesser extent, the new Nokia N8 and the new Windows Phones.

The Pre 2 gets a new glass screen, a new bezel around the upper half. And it loses the fugly MicroUSB door. Best of all, it finally gets a 1 GHz processor. I have been pimping my Pre Plus to 1 GHz as well, without any issues, when the screen is on. You need a different kernel and a governor to do that, but it's quite easy to setup.

Existing devices will get the new webOS 2.0 software "in the coming months", whatever that means. The carriers need to certify the OS, and then it's rolled out OTA to your phone. There is no need to talk about the features until it's there. My guess is that it will only take a few weeks, not months.

Quote of the day

by Volker Weber

Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend. Inside a dog, it's too dark to read.
— Groucho Marx

[via David R. on Facebook]

Benign envy sells iPhones, but malicious envy drives consumers to BlackBerries

by Volker Weber

People are willing to pay more for products that elicit their envy—but that's only when they are motivated by a positive, benign form of envy, according to a new study in the Journal of Consumer Research.

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Lotus Mobility Konferenz

by Volker Weber

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Das hör ich mir dann mal an. Bin auch gespannt, ob der Mann mit der Mütze im echten Leben vielleicht etwas freundlicher ist als hinter seiner Tastatur. Die Veranstaltung scheint nicht ausgebucht zu sein, falls sich noch jemand anmelden mag.

Es gibt keinen zweiten Bill Gates

by Volker Weber

Als Bill Gates sich aus dem Tagesgeschäft zurückziehen wollte, sah er sich mit dem Problem aller Gründer konfrontiert: wer soll mein Nachfolger sein? Bei Microsoft konnte niemand existieren, unter einem stattlichen Baum wächst kein zweiter. Der Einzige, den Gates finde konnte, war Ray Ozzie. Er investierte in seine neue Firma Groove Networks und übernahm sie schließlich. Nicht etwa, weil ihn das Produkt interessierte, sondern weil er Ozzie haben wollte. Gates zog sich aus der Geschäftsleitung zurück und installierte sich in einer bisher unbekannten Position: Chief Software Architect. Eine Position, die für seinen Nachfolger maßgeschneidert war. Abseits des Tagesgeschehens alle Fäden in der Hand zu halten, um Microsoft auf dem richtigen Pfad zu halten.

Das konnte für Gates funktionieren, weil niemand seine Rolle hinterfragen konnte. Gates war die überragende Persönlichkeit innerhalb von Microsoft. Sein Wort war Gesetz. Eine Autorität, die sich auf niemand übertragen ließ.

Ray Ozzie hatte alles, was Gates in ihm suchte. Weit vorausausschauend, fähig, Wichtiges von Dringendem zu trennen, ein Mensch, der Software atmet. Er konnte Microsoft entscheidende Impulse geben. Die Neuausrichtung auf Cloud Services, die Hinwendung zu Open Source, eine freundlichere Kultur. Aber Ozzie hatte nicht Gates' Autorität. Er konnte sie nicht besitzen, sondern nur leihen. Ohne Gates im Hintergrund galt Ozzie bei Microsoft nicht viel.

Wie viele Unternehmensgründer ist Bill Gates an der Aufgabe gescheitert, sich selbst zu klonen. Es gibt keinen zweiten Bill Gates. Die Trennung ist konsequent.

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Apple Reports Fourth Quarter Results

by Volker Weber

"We are blown away to report over $20 billion in revenue and over $4 billion in after-tax earnings—both all-time records for Apple," said Steve Jobs, Apple’s CEO. "iPhone sales of 14.1 million were up 91 percent year-over-year, handily beating the 12.1 million phones RIM sold in their most recent quarter. We still have a few surprises left for the remainder of this calendar year."

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I am surprised you don't know Marco

by Volker Weber

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Sorry girls, I don't know you. Even if you know Chris and Chris.

Ray Ozzie to step down as Microsoft Chief Software Architect

by Volker Weber

I have been expecting this for a while:

Ray and I are announcing today Ray’s intention to step down from his role as chief software architect.

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IBM Third-Quarter Earnings announced

by Volker Weber

IBM wins:

"In the third quarter we grew revenue in our hardware, software and services businesses, expanded margins and again increased earnings per share at double digits," said Samuel J. Palmisano, IBM chairman, president and chief executive officer.

Lotus und Rational, not so much:

Revenues from the WebSphere family of software products increased 14 percent year over year. Information Management software revenues increased 5 percent. Revenues from Tivoli software increased 9 percent. Revenues from Lotus software and Rational software were flat.

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TITANIC: Neuer Personalausweis nicht sicher

by Volker Weber

Der neue Personalausweis offenbart eklatante Sicherheitsmängel: Mit einem handelsüblichen Lesegerät (Auge) und einem Gehirn, welches das lateinische Alphabet und die arabischen Zahlen beherrscht, lassen sich ganz einfach alle Daten vom Ausweis ablesen. So können sie dies verhindern:

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Win a Sonos ZoneBridge and ZonePlayer S5

by Volker Weber

So far only 66 (pages of)* people entered. Giveaway ends today. Rules:

The Weblogs Giveaways (the “Giveaways”) are open only to individuals who are legal residents of the fifty (50) United States (including the District of Columbia) and Canada (excluding Quebec) and are 18 years of age or older.

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*) Thanks, Adam :-)

Take me out

by Volker Weber

[Thanks, Heiko]

Microsoft ad lies. Ballmer doesn't.

by Volker Weber

ballmer_phones_web

The clever Microsoft ad depicting people who miss the important moments in their life, because they are looking at their phone, claims Windows Phone 7 to be "designed to get you in, and out, and back to life." Steve Ballmer called Windows Phone 7 "always delightful and wonderfully mine".

I think Ballmer hits it better than the ad.

From having used one of those new phones, an HTC 7 Trophy, I think you will spend more time on it instead of less. It's not faster than the BlackBerrys Microsoft is making fun of. It's not more effective. But it's "delightful". Beautifully designed, with great interactions and a good flow between different parts of the phone. Much like RIM claims for BlackBerry 6. Only prettier, and not as fast. Try checking what's new on Facebook. You will have to look in three different hubs: contacts, photos and me.

Prepare to spend more time with your phone if you get one of those. And that's what you want to do, if you spend so much money on it, don't you?

Modern man

by Volker Weber

Experimental - vowe.net gets a Like button

by Volker Weber

If you like the Like button, press the Like button. If you don't, don't. Yes, I am aware there is no dislike button.

Update 3 days later: No, I did not like it. Gone for now. Maybe later ...

wissel.net :: Progress in data structures

by Volker Weber

Four decades ago COBOL ruled business IT. Its DATA DIVISION. contained all the data structures we ever would need. COBOL had clever constructs like REDEFINES and (in the procedure division) MOVE CORRESPONDING. Of course during the last fourty years we made progress. COBOL data was un-throned by XML (OK I skipped some steps in between) which is getting un-throned by JSON. Comparing the formats you clearly can see the progress made:

Ah, the memories. :-)

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Quote of the day

by Volker Weber

Ich habe noch drei Wochen meinen Job als Chefredakteur bei Focus.de. Ich kann langsam anfangen die Wahrheit zu sagen.
Jochen Wegner

Kevin

by Volker Weber

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FAS 17.10.2010

Your Facebook profile photo is more important than you might think

by Volker Weber

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Some of my devices pull contacts in from multiple sources and merge them into a single entry for each person. Palm calls this Synergy:

Palm webOS uses the Palm Synergy™ feature to bring together information from multiple sources automatically, so the information you need is all in one place. It gathers contact and calendar information from places like Facebook®, Google™, LinkedIn®, Microsoft® Office Outlook®, and Yahoo!, and puts it in one view.3 It recognizes text and IM chats with the same person and combines them in one conversation. And many apps built for webOS are integrated with other apps on the phone, sharing information with each other and doing more for you in fewer steps.

My Android phones pull Facebook information and join it with my address book. The new Windows Phone does the same. It may start on one phone and end up in my address book. No matter if you send me mail via your personal or your business account, you are likely to look the same. So, whatever you chose to represent you on Facebook, might as well represent you in all of your communications going forward.

On Facebook I commented:

Your Facebook profile photo gets more important with each smartphone that syncs contacts with Facebook. Make it a good one. Not your dog or your kid. And lose those stupid shades.

One answer was: "my LinkedIn profile has a little more serious picture." Sorry to burst your bubble, but I am going to see your Facebook photo a lot more often than your LinkedIn picture. It's going to be in my contacts, my email, my call log, everywhere. It becomes your avatar.

impressions

Helsingin Sanomat: Knock, Knock, Nokia's Heavy Fall...

by Volker Weber

Nokia has lost its way. What on earth happened to the mobile phone pathfinder?

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Schlanke fünfzigtausend

by Volker Weber

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Für die Extras gibt's alternativ auch ein Beiboot.

Good morning. Did you enjoy your breakfast?

by Volker Weber

[via Samuel on Facebook]

Interested in a REALLY expensive Nokia E72?

by Volker Weber

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Photo: Vertu

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[via misp]

MeeGo calling - on N900

by Volker Weber

After many busy months of MeeGo development, we have finally come to a stage that justifies proud blogging around our MeeGo for N900 adaptation project. As you may already suspect, or have heard from IRC or discussion forums, we now have 3G audio call functionality with proper ofono signaling and pulse audio stack working on N900, including our brand new open source modem adaptation for N900!...

On the Maemo side, there have been interesting, supporting developments going on, as well. The PR 1.3 update is quite close now, and with that you can easily dual boot between Maemo and Meego on your N900.

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New kid on the block

by Volker Weber

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You met three of them. None of them runs Android. :-)

I haven't signed any NDAs, but I understand that my colleagues have to wait until the 21st before they can publish formal reviews. In the light of that I am going to hold back more than I usually do.

What I can tell you is that the software is very different from what you have seen so far. A breath of fresh air. I very much like the design of the screens, although they seem wasteful. The largest fonts are reserved for the least import information. At launch Steve Ballmer promised "delightful and wonderfully mine", and after I played with this phone, I think, yes, that does make sense.

I was not forced to register the device with Microsoft, I did not have to sign in to Windows Live*. Google Mail, Calendar, Contacts and Facebook were set up in a matter of minutes. And I haven't used Exchange once. It remains to be seen how the phone will integrate with other Internet services, but so far, this has been incredibly smooth sailing. I am impresssed.

There is however one showstopper. You need a media management software on your PC, akin to iTunes. And that is so far only available for PCs. However, neowin.net reports:

In a surprise move, Microsoft UK’s head of Windows Phone marketing, Oded Ran, tweeted that Mac users will be able to sync Windows Phone 7 devices with a version of the Zune software for Macs. This tweet has since been removed from Twitter.

Apart from this roadblock, it is going to be very easy to sell these devices. They are extremely appealing. Some impressions after the break:

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What a pity that I was never this crazy

by Volker Weber

Mixed Tape 35 "Blue Mood" is out

by Volker Weber

mixedtape35

01 FIVE ON TOP | THE SAY HIGHS | 5:02
02 GONE | LAURA DUGMORE | 3:07
03 THANK YOU FOR | VONLEWALD | 3:42
04 MOVE AND REMOVE | FLAMANTE + CAMILA LÓPEZ | 3:49
05 COSMOLOGICAL | KAMP! | 3:46
06 SZRON | SELEDYN | 2:58
07 SOUNDS FORM THE SEA | LITTLE LION | 3:09
08 RISE & RISE AGAIN | THE APRIL SKIES | 3:08
09 FANGS | CULEBRA | 3:51
10 I’M LOST WHEN I CAN’T SEE THE STARS IN THE CITY | THE BUTTERFLY GRAVEYARD | 4:31

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[Thanks, Alper]

Amazon to Launch "Kindle Singles"

by Volker Weber

SEATTLE--(BUSINESS WIRE)--(NASDAQ:AMZN)—Less than 10,000 words or more than 50,000: that is the choice writers have generally faced for more than a century—works either had to be short enough for a magazine article or long enough to deliver the "heft" required for book marketing and distribution. But in many cases, 10,000 to 30,000 words (roughly 30 to 90 pages) might be the perfect, natural length to lay out a single killer idea, well researched, well argued and well illustrated—whether it's a business lesson, a political point of view, a scientific argument, or a beautifully crafted essay on a current event.

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She is a thing of beauty

by Volker Weber

Scoopertino - All the news that's fit to fabricate

by Volker Weber

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iPhone bald bei O2 Deutschland

by Volker Weber

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Aus der FAQ:

1. Haben die von O2 verkauften iPhones einen SIM Lock?

Nein. Bei O2 verkaufte iPhones haben keinen SIM Lock.

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Vodafone wird ebenfalls folgen. Mal gespannt, wie es dort mit der Sperre aussieht.

Create panorama images right on your phone

by Volker Weber

Nokia N8 Panorama outdoor
Photo: vowe

Panorama application produces high-quality smooth panoramic images by automatically capturing and processing input images into a panorama, directly on your device.

This is a spin-off from an internal Nokia project to build streetview images for Nokia maps. Available for free, for the Nokia N8 and the N900.

Nokia N8 Panorama indoor
Photo: vowe

Put something like this on your next business card

by Volker Weber

qrvowevcard

This is my business card, readable for QR Code scanners. Create your own here, and print in on your next business card. If you keep this graphic as a photo on your phone, you can let people scan your details right from the display of your phone.

Android users will probably have Barcode Scanner already installed on their device. iPhone users should look for the free i-nigma (iPhone 4 or earlier) or Mobiletag in the iTunes store.

Oracle and IBM Collaborate to Accelerate Java Innovation Through OpenJDK

by Volker Weber

REDWOOD SHORES, CA & ARMONK, NY - 11 Oct 2010: Oracle (NASDAQ: ORCL) and IBM (NYSE: IBM) today announced that the companies will collaborate to allow developers and customers to build and innovate based on existing Java investments and the OpenJDK reference implementation. Specifically, the companies will collaborate in the OpenJDK community to develop the leading open source Java environment.

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Do you want a Windows Phone 7?

by Volker Weber

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I have been watching this Windows Phone 7 space since Microsoft announced it in Barcelona in February. It takes guts to start all over, and to announce it months in advance, rendering your current line of products obsolete.

Today, Microsoft announced availability in many countries for next Thursday. I will probably have one on Tuesday or so. And I am really looking forward to trying it out. Forget the silly cut&paste drama. The UX is quite slick. When you look at some of the screens, for instance the inbox, you only see five mails. Tell you what, I only see five on my iPhone as well. My Torch shows seven, so does the N8. While the interface looks wasteful on pictures, it may prove to be nice when you touch it. So I am completely open.

I do hope that Microsoft is equally open. If they only tie this phone into their own services, like Nokia initially tried with Ovi, I am going to drop it really quickly. But if it does live with GMail, Google Calendar, Google Contacts, Twitter and Facebook, then why not?

Funny ad, btw:

Palm Pre 2: 1GHz processor at last

by Volker Weber

palm-pre-2-sfr-leak

HP is fixing the performance bottleneck:

1GHz processor, 512MB RAM, Same design as the current Pre series, but with a "flatter screen" (we’re supposing glass) and "more refined design."

That's inline with my expectations. It's becoming less round and more edgy. And it will be running at 1GHz, which makes all the difference. The new system software will also run on existing devices. Nobody mentions a release date, but I am confident to speculate "well before Xmas". Everything else would not make sense.

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Claire Grube, Anna Lyse und Frank Prengel

by Volker Weber

winphone7_kontakte_01 winphone7_outlook_02
Photos: Microsoft

Sent from my Windows Phone

Network updates

by Volker Weber

LinkedIn says:

Ed Brill has an updated current title: Director, Product Management -- Messaging and Collaboration at IBM

Congratulations, Ed. :-)

Mike Gotta: Collaboration, The Long Journey

by Volker Weber

After 15+ years of deploying more and more tools, we need to ask ourselves "why haven't organizations realized the level of breakthrough collaboration necessary for them to excel" or in some cases, survive?

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Heise Events: Das mobile Firmennetz

by Volker Weber

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Was den Einsatz von Mobiltelefonen und Tablets angeht, leben wir in spannenden Zeiten. Noch ist der BlackBerry die dominante Plattform im Firmeneinsatz, aber die anderen holen mächtig auf.

In vier Wochen geht's deshalb wieder auf Reisen mit Heise Netze. Ich muss mir langsam mal Gedanken machen, was genau ich erzählen will. Premiere: ich darf als erster sprechen. Sonst muss ich die Teilnehmer nach dem Mittagessen aus dem Fresskoma wachküssen. Wir haben wie immer sieben Referenten, von denen sich nur zwei das Kinn halten. :-)

First manned flight of Spaceship 2

by Volker Weber

Flies like a piano. 40,000 ft in 10 minutes. Excellent pilot as you can see in the last 100 ft.

[Thanks, Hajo]

What is 24x7x365 monitoring?

by Volker Weber

Just checking out pricing of LotusLive Notes. When I was looking through the features, I stumbled upon "24x7x365 monitoring". How does that compute? Is that 24 hours x 7 years x 365 days? The German translation makes more sense: "Überwachung rund um die Uhr, 365 Tage im Jahr". 2012 is going to be a problem though. That has 366 days. ;-)

Nokia N8 has some annoying issues

by Volker Weber

While I am very impressed with Nokia's progress, there are a few annoying issues. I am going to start a list, and I as I find more annoyances will amend them. I will also post fixes here, so come and revisit.

  1. Nokia provides a social client with basic plugins for Twitter and Facebook. Unfortunately it uses a very small font which cannot be adjusted. The app also does not inherit clock settings from the operating system. Update: fixed
  2. The N8 browser requires lots of screen taps and does not support reflow, like Android and BlackBerry 6 do.
  3. I cannot get Nokia Multimedia Transfer on my iMac to recognize the N8 over USB, no matter which setting I use on the phone. Without Multimedia Transfer Nokia Map Loader does not work.
  4. Connected N8 via Bluetooth to Multimedia Transfer as USB wasn't working. Loaded Nokia Map Loader. Map Loader shows no maps at all. When I hit Update Maps, Map Loader bombs. Submitted debug information. Nokia, this is SNAFU. Provide download links for maps. I know how to move files with a file manager. I guess most people do. Workaround: used Ovi Suite on PC.
  5. Ovi Store apps are not current. A number of times I have downloaded and installed apps from Ovi Store, to be told on first launch, that there is a newer version available, which required yet another install of the same app, now downloaded from the app web site. Bloomberg was the latest one.
  6. Widgets on the home screen cannot be moved from one of the three screens to the other. When you use the shortcut widgets, you cannot move shortcuts around with drag&drop. Instead you have to select the app you want for each of the four positions from a long text list.
  7. I have installed a few apps from Ovi Store that I am unable to delete. They don't show up in the application manager. I have also removed the Ovi Store icon from the shortcut widget, and now cannot add it since it does not show up on the list of available apps. [Partly resolved: Mikael Jonsson told me it's called Store instead of Ovi Store.]

Do you notice that there are no hardware issues? :-)

Notice to Nokia fans: I like the N8. See:

Nokia N8 as portable HD media player

by Volker Weber

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Having both an iPad and an iPhone I am thoroughly impressed with the N8 as a media player. I have thrown a couple of HD movies on my memory key (here without my keychain) and it has played them without any issues on my Sony flatscreen TV through HDMI. At 1080p no less.

What you need to have with you is the HDMI-to-HDMI-mini connector if your videos are an your N8. And the USB adapter to play anything from an attached thumb drive or hard disk. The N8 has a USB host, so you can simply connect other USB devices.

It will also let you move files in and out of your phone's storage through the on-board file manager. If you have some MP3 files on a thumb drive, you can easily import them to the phone. The same is true for pictures you may have taken with your camera. It's a bit like the camera connection kit for the iPad. Only much more powerful. And it comes included with the N8.

Where do you store all that? The N8 comes with 16 GB of internal memory and it has a microUSB slot that can hold up to an additional 32 GB on SDHC.

Smell like a monster

by Volker Weber

Bought any music from Rhapsody? Burn & Rip. NOW.

by Volker Weber

This is a friendly reminder for our customers to backup any and all files purchased from Rhapsody or RealNetworks Music Stores before July 2008.

Within the next 30 days we will be upgrading our internal systems and will no longer be supporting Rhapsody encrypted (RAX) files. These files will still continue to play. However, if you have any of these files on your computer, we advise you back them up by burning them to audio CD, as you will no longer be able to re-license these files. Once you have burned your tracks to audio CD, they can be converted and stored in any format you desire.

We want to make sure you keep the tracks that you paid for, so be sure to back-up your tracks for safe-keeping!

Thanks,

-Rhapsody

Repeat after me: DRM is bad for the customer.

[Thanks, Daniel]

Easily overlooked

by Volker Weber

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This my dear friends is a Xenon flash. Not a LED flash or a dual LED flash. It's the real thing. The last phone I have used with this type of flash was a Nokia N82. People bought this phone exclusively for the camera. The Xenon flash is only one indication that Nokia is very serious about the N8. The other one is a dedicated camera button that actually works:

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It. Just. Works.

by Volker Weber

IMG_1617

Remember the difficulties I had when trying to get the excellent BH-905 to work with an iPhone? Child's play on the N8. Set the headset to discoverable. Go into Connections on the N8, add the headphone, trust the headphone connection. Done. It. Just. Works.

I have alluded to Symbian^3 not being ready. In reality, I have not stumbled once. OK, it helps that I have a long history with Nokia phones and know where I find stuff. And Symbian^3 requires way more taps on the screen than iOS. But this is definitely the first Nokia touch device that I would have no difficulty working with.

One more thing: Ovi Store is getting better. The N8 downloaded an update on first open. And this one has not had me screaming and kicking. And that is a big change.

Nokia N8 Sample Photos

by Volker Weber

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You want samples from the N8 cameras, I heard you. So I took a walk around the neighborhood and shot a dozen frames. The N8 is in full automatic, and the photos are straight off the memory card. No edits at all. Since the sun is out and the sky is blue, this is not a good photo light. There is lots of it, which is good, but there are also extreme contrasts. A slight overcast would be much better for the camera.

Click any of the photos and it will take you to a Flickr slideshow.

The Nokia N8 has arrived

by Volker Weber

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As expected there was a box at the door in the early morning. The mighty N8 has arrived. Now it has to fight against the iPhone 4, which I currently like a lot.

First impressions: small box, excellent stuff inside. The phone, the tiny charger, one USB-cable, two dongles, one for playing video through HDMI, one for attaching USB media, an ear canal headset (!). Nokia also sent an O2 SIM, my favorite German network.

I was up and running on my Wi-Fi, with GMail, contacts and calendars synced through Mail for Exchange against my Google account, Twitter and Facebook within about 10 minutes. The browser needed some tweaking, since it insisted on using the O2 APN instead of defaulting to Wi-Fi where possible. My only complaint so far is the social application Nokia provides. Tiny font, does not inherit settings from Symbian. The clock for instance shows am/pm instead of 24h clock.

I will keep you posted. This is miles apart from the dreaded N97.

It's only been a week

by Volker Weber

A Little Old Friend
Photo: Chris Saulit

The bicycle tour was my most memorable crossing by far. If you ever have the opportunity, go for it.

Cat chat

by Volker Weber

Quote of the day

by Volker Weber

Note. If you are going to lie about conversations you had with people, make sure they are not nearby to be asked about it.
Paul Mooney

Paul, habitual liars don't even know what's true anymore. They start to believe their own lies. And as a German saying goes, a person who lies, also steals.

What a nice character

by Volker Weber

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Thinly veiled death wishes. And aren't all novels fiction?

Android users, bend over

by Volker Weber

T-Mobile's Latest Android Phone Comes With Free Freedom-Destroying Rootkit

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XPages - where did that come from?

by Volker Weber

XPages is currently heralded as the future for Domino applications. Some people know that the technology was salvaged from the Workplace fiasco, but how did this begin?

In 2004, during the "dual highway" strategy, IBM needed a programming environment for Webphere Application Server that would appeal to Notes developers. Documents, forms, views. So they bought XSP from a small partner called Trilog Group, a company headquartered in the US, with research and development in France and Lebanon. Together with the deal, IBM scored the technical lead Philippe Riand. Trilog tells the story like this:

Founded in 1997, Trilog Group is an established leader and visionary in the IBM Lotus community. The company is best known for inventing the innovative XSP programming model, which IBM Lotus introduced in Domino Designer 8.5 as XPages. First developed by Trilog in 1999 under the FlowBuilder XSP brand and subsequently acquired by IBM in 2004, XPages let Domino developers easily create Web 2.0 user experiences for Domino web applications.

There is a small part missing: the years between 2004 and 2009. XSP morphed into Workplace Designer, then Lotus Component Designer. When it was killed, the team fought to be attached to Domino to stay alive. Thus, XPages. Philippe Riand is still the lead architect for the product. He works closely with Maureen Leeland, who owns Domino Designer.

Speculation: If the group continues to build a WAS implementation of XPages (taking it full circle to where it started), you could be running those XPages apps in the future on WAS, and with that on Portal, Connections and thus Vulcan. Without ever needing a Domino server.

What's missing? A software product that turns Notes apps into XPages apps. One of the things you did not hear this week was a sales pitch from a Lotus Business Partner to the attendees of a super secret conference about a product that turns everything into server side Javascript. Would not be the first attempt at converting Notes apps, would it?

Lotus has great news for you

by Volker Weber

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No, not that huge IBM customer Daimler, maker of Mercedes, Smart, Maybach, Freightliner, Fuso, Western Star and Detroit Diesel cars and trucks, is moving 180,000 seats to Microsoft's cloud offerings. That is insignificant.

The good news is that Finnish company Atria, already a Notes customer, is consolidating their multiple mail system across geographies to the IBM product.

Show the product - in an interesting way

by Volker Weber

[via Peter Glaser]

Girls on longboards

by Volker Weber

Google Goggles now available on iPhone in Google Mobile App

by Volker Weber

Back in December we introduced Google Goggles on Android: it lets you search by taking pictures. Today, we’re excited to announce that Goggles is now a feature of Google Mobile App for iPhone. Google Mobile App already lets you speak your queries, and it can also use your phone’s location to give you more relevant search results.

More >

Nokia BH-905 revisited

by Volker Weber

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Photo: Nokia

I have used this headset now for a couple of weeks and it has performed absolutely flawlessly. I even got it to work with the iPhone 4. You connect it and as soon as you hear the connection beep, you keep on hitting the play button on the headset until the iPhone gets it. Once you have established this connection, the iPhone will react to all the relevant commands like play/pause, skip forward and backwards. I have also been able to use it for phone calls with the iPhone.

On my 12 hour flights, I have used it with an iPod touch 3rd gen. I don't want to run down a phone battery in flight and find myself with a dead battery on arrival. I just put the iPod on a long playlist and left it inside my bag in the overhead compartment. I put on the headset for noise cancellation and when I wanted to listen to music, I just hit the play/pause button. When I did not like a track I just skipped forward. No wires to tangle up. It was just brilliant. Batteries never wore down. I recharged them when I was able to, but I have no idea how long they really last.

Big, big recommendation.

Nokia's MeeGo device chief quits

by Volker Weber

The VP in charge of Nokia's MeeGo Devices has resigned. Ari Jaaksi confirmed to Finland's Talous Sanomat that he resigned last week. According to a Nokia spokesman his departure does not affect MeeGo's rollout schedule which had called for a first device to be delivered before the end of 2010

More >

Quote of the day

by Volker Weber

Arschlöcher erkennt man besonders leicht daran, dass sie sich selbst stolz "Querdenker" nennen.
— Hanno Z.

If tree falls in forest ...

by Volker Weber

ZZ405B4F03

These are link counters. Every time somebody clicks, the counter goes up by one. Disregard the blue circles. The first column tells you how long the links have been up. Two of those line items have been pimped through Twitter to push them higher. But why? Nobody's looking anyway.

Sicher ist sicher

by Volker Weber

Sicher ist sicher
Photo: vowe

Es lebe die Glühbirne

by Volker Weber

Heatballs sind technisch der klassischen Glühbirne sehr ähnlich, nur dass sie nicht zur Beleuchtung gedacht sind, sondern zum Heizen.

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A few thoughts on the BlackBerry Torch 9800

by Volker Weber

IMG_1608
Photo: vowe

I have used a BlackBerry Torch, actually two of them, for a week now and I feel confident enough to tell you a bit more about it. A few random thoughts:

It's heavy. At 162 g it is considerably heavier than a Bold 9700 which only weighs 122 g. Since it is not much larger though, it "feels" more expensive. I have a theory that heavier items seem to be more solid than lighter things of the same volume. The slider mechanism is built like a tank.

Does it have a touch screen? Since the Torch has the same controls as a Bold, you can use it exactly the same way. Muscle memory wins. You just slide it open, and then everything is in the right place. It takes a while to realize you can actually touch things instead of moving the cursor with the trackpad. I have not used the virtual onscreen keyboard once.

BlackBerry OS 6 is a winner. While I don't like the different icon trays for All, Favorites, Media, Download, or Frequent, I love everything else. The browser is so much better, the icons look nicer, the popup menu is better since it gives you more visual and spatial queues. The apps have gotten a lot better and the integration between them is great. Example: a contact will list the recent activities with that person.

Social Feeds is shallow. If you want to dive into an item you are immediately thrown into the real app. I have put it aside and prefer the original apps that Social Feeds taps into.

The screen is way better than it looks on paper. Way better than the Bold. Easy to read in direct sunlight, much larger. There is no way I can go back to the Bold without feeling relegated. Once you have used the Torch, the Bold feels rather cheap.

Battery life is sucky. The Torch battery is smaller than the Bold's. And it has a larger screen to drive. Before my software upgrade I could easily drive the Torch into the ground within a few hours. On a bicycle trip from San Francisco to Sausalito I had both an iPhone 4 and the Torch in my pockets. The Torch was dead in Sausalito when the iPhone still had a 82% charge. I have now applied a newer software build that has not yet shown this behavior. This needs further investigation.

The Torch is the best BlackBerry yet. And still I don't think that is is as desirable as an iPhone 4. The Apple product is smooth, it has great features like the "retina" display, an excellent camera, a video call feature that works great. And it's the default choice for app developers. The BlackBerry is solid, has great enterprise support and provides some great application integration. Two years ago it would have been a killer.

Social Junk

by Volker Weber

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There is a social equivalent to junk mail. It's quite easy to produce. You create accounts on all social services and then link them all together. You track your workout with Runkeeper, then you publish that to FourSquare, which in turns gets published to Facebook and Twitter, which feeds Buzz and Facebook, and then you link it all once more with FriendFeed and include that link in Facebook. Your friends can deal with that junk, right?

The problem is not that you like to use RunKeeper or FourSquare or Twitter or Facebook or Buzz. The problem is cross pollution.

Yes, I like Alex. In real life.

Autumn Leaves

by Volker Weber

Autumn Leaves
Photo: vowe

AT&T BlackBerry Torch upgraded to latest release

by Volker Weber

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The AT&T BlackBerry Torch 9800 is being delivered with OS 6 Bundle 278 and can be upgraded with the latest Rogers Build to Bundle 695. Just remove the vendor.xml file after installing the Rogers update to the PC.

Golden Gate from the water

by Volker Weber

Golden Gate from the water
Photo: vowe

Public transportation

by Volker Weber

Public transportation
Photo: vowe

Warning sign at hotel back entrance

by Volker Weber

Warning sign at hotel back entrance
Photo: vowe

Twitter used to live here

by Volker Weber

Twitter used to live here
Photo: vowe

Ceci n'est pas un blog

I explain difficult concepts in simple ways. For free, and for money. Clue procurement and bullshit detection.

vowe

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