Category Archives: Inviting Change

New Year, New Direction

I want to thank WordPress for the very cool blog stats job they did for the 2011 summary.  Saved me a lot of work!

Which is especially good since I’ve been working hard on something new (I know, I know: what’s new in that, right?).  But bear with me! Continue reading

Microsoft + Nokia Babies: Hate at a Distance, Love Up Close

original source: http://www.pop.com.br/

Apologies to QML fans but I’m going to to extend the interruption of that series by at least one more article.  Blame a cynical friend’s recent conversion to the Dark Side of mobile MicrosoftContinue reading

More Post-MeeGo Musing: Community Echoes

Ever since Intel’s MeeGo-cedes-to-Tizen announcement, I’ve been in a slightly unfocused state.  It’s familiar territory– when Maemo was set aside by Nokia for MeeGo, there was the same quandary: what now?  Better yet, what next?

After a little over two years of scant free time, I’m finally working normal hours.  So that liberates me for more community engagement, aka the stuff I really love.  It also frees me up to think.  But looking back on the past 5 years of support for open source projects with great promise but ultimate abandonment, I’m left to wonder what to target.  Continue reading

The Un-local Nokia

I’ve been pretty easy on my favorite former employer lately, even to the point of gushing over Nokia World 2011 and pouring out pure fanboy praise over a fantastic phone that will only see limited release.  But I don’t think I’d be performing my duty as a recently-renewed Developer Champion if I didn’t provide some much-needed critical feedback.  Lovingly, of course.

Nokia’s physical withdrawal from certain locales is not a new subject for me, but it’s reached a point where I’m more concerned than ever.  Of course most of my focus is on the United States, and more specifically, my home near Dallas, Texas.  In just a few years Nokia as a brand has become a complete non-factor here and just about the entire country.  I’m keenly observant of devices used by others and, outside of a small circle of open source enthusiasts, I’m seeing everything but Nokia phones in the hands of the general public.

None of that is news to most people.  And Nokia has made it very clear that it expects its fairly new Windows Phone strategy, coupled with impeccable and compelling industrial design, to get its high-end products back into regions (like the US) where product sales margins matter.

The continued problem as I see it, though, is that Nokia seems to expect that they can concentrate all efforts on a few key cities.  Its shrinking supply chain system has led to greater consolidation of localization activities at sites far removed from the end customers.  Now, for core needs this consolidation need not be an issue; a phone engine is a phone engine is a phone engine.  But as many companies are becoming increasingly aware, last-mile localization is an absolute must for finished goods.

This translates to customer Care activities as well.  Contract employees at remote call centers just cannot identify with many of the diverse clientele they are called upon to support.  It’s not just language barriers; cultural differences can be a real hindrance (not to mention cybersecurity risks).  But more than that, trade customers (i.e., AT&T, Telcel, Orange, et al) will not tolerate delays in problem resolution.  They will require local presence in key markets.  Continue reading

Nokia’s N9: An Unexpected Owner’s Review

source: conversations.nokia.com

I didn’t expect to be able to say anything first-hand about the Nokia N9.  I really thought my semi-facetious post a while back would be pretty much it unless I came up with some other abstract commentary to inflict on you all.  And I really haven’t used this meandering blog for device reviews, unless you count one admittedly unusual attempt for the slightly-less-cool N8.

So I was genuinely surprised to receive a sleek black N9 in London last month the day before Nokia World 2011, at a special Champions Day event.  And I’ve used it enough to share some juicy details.

First, however, a disclaimer:

The following review is from a drooling, starry-eyed device nut who is contemplating super-gluing an N9 to his hand.  Don’t expect much objectivity.

So let’s do this.  Continue reading

My Derailed Journey Back to Nokia

This is a highly personal post so for those whose eyes roll or minds reel at the thought, click past this one and I promise more juicy tech stuff next.

As regular readers know, I lost a great job with an awesome company in January of 2009.  As of this past Monday I started a challenging new role with what seems like another awesome company so far.  In between, I worked at something that didn’t work out while keeping an eye on Nokia opportunities the whole time.    Continue reading

Thoughts from Nokia World 2011

A few weeks ago, Nokia Connects held a media contest to award tickets, travel and accomodation for some lucky blogger to express why he or she was excited about Nokia World 2011.  I already had all that covered, but gave it a shot just in case my wife or a friend could use the prize.  Worth a try, right?

Granted, my entry began by addressing cynicism, some personal but largely general, which had to make it a long-shot.  I walked readers through my Nokia journey for this year, with the aim of providing an objective yet ultimately optimistic view of the company’s prospects.   Continue reading