Tag Archives: open source

Maemo is Dead… Long Live Maemo

Before I launch into coverage of the MeeGo Conference in San Francisco this past week, I’d like to touch on a touchy and related issue:  the future of Maemo.

As most readers here are already aware, Maemo was Nokia’s enigmatic attempt at a Linux operating system for mobile devices.  I don’t want to go into the history in this article; it’s easy enough to find on this blog and elsewhere and I want to focus clearly on the future.   Continue reading

MeeGo Limbo

Several people have asked me to put my thoughts down on Nokia’s new partnership with Microsoft.  Twitter just isn’t the place for it; several 140-characters-or-less postings were met with responses quite distant from where I was going.  I’ll try to say something useful and coherent– but keep in mind this will be an opinion piece.  Very personal.  And lengthy.

To understand my take on things you need to understand where I come from.  Six years ago I was perfectly happy without a cell phone.  I had no need for one, even despised and sometimes pitied people enslaved to them.  And smartphones?  I dismissed the idea entirely.  What would I do with a “computer in my palm”?  How smart could a phone be?   Continue reading

Marketing MeeGo: Introduction

One of the biggest challenges facing the MeeGo venture will be creating tangible interest around its (eventual) offerings.  iOS and
Android enjoy the buzz right now, the latter now benefiting more than the former.  At some point MeeGo as a product (or family of products) needs to establish the same sort of excitement if it is to seize significant market share.

It’s only natural to assume that any corporate entity utilizing MeeGo in some manner would craft unique marketing campaigns for their implementations.  But grassroots or community-led marketing is something else entirely.   Continue reading

Input on a feedback ecosystem

I am about to plunge this often-erratic blog over a sharply-defined edge and into a sea of clear certainty.

Now that I have your attention, let’s talk feedback.

How many times have you been presented with a survey in which you were highly interested but failed to complete?

How often do you play a song you enjoy yet neglect to rate it?

How many software bugs have plagued your mobile device of choice and were not followed by reports sent to the developer(s)?

I think it’s safe to say that the one aspect of feedback that keeps our complaining (or praising) confined to unproductive quarters is the frequent disconnect between the usage and the feedback opportunity.  At least in my experience, far too often the feedback mechanisms are separated from the origin of their need, especially when that starts with a mobile device.  The greater the gap, the less likely we may be to take the step that can actually serve to prevent future aggravation.

Continue reading

Qt | Podcasting + conferencing + Twitter

A handful of people with ties to the maemo.org community have been kicking around the idea of a new podcast.  I’m not going to go too deeply into the proposed format at this time but rather will present the technical wishes discussed so far and solicit input from the readers on how to address them.

Interested?  Read on!

Continue reading

Maemo 5 plus FOSDEM 2010 = ?

Thanks to Dave Neary I was reminded this morning of the upcoming FOSDEM 2010 conference in Brussels, Belgium, and brought up to date more-or-less on Maemo participation.

For those unfamiliar, FOSDEM stands for “Free and Open Source Developers’ European Meeting” and is an event held annually in Brussells.  The website description is:

FOSDEM is a free and non-commercial event organized by the community for the community. The goal is to provide Free Software and Open Source developers and communities a place to meet to:

  • get in touch with other developers and projects;
  • be informed about the latest developments in the Free Software and Open Source world;
  • attend interesting talks and presentations held in large conference rooms by Free Software and Open Source project leaders and committers on various topics; and
  • to promote the development and the benefits of Free Software and Open Source solutions.

Participation and attendance is totally free, though the organization gratefully accepts donationals and sponsorships.

Continue reading

Apples and applets

Just as Nokia does some perplexing housecleaning by shuttering Flagship stores (more on that later perhaps), Apple engages in a bit of store flushing of its own.

Turns out a Chinese software publisher was gaming the iTunes App Store with a little insider trading of sorts.  “Give me 5 stars for my app, I give you promotional codes”.

The payoff of course was a meteoric rise in rankings for what turned out to be crudely-constructed code fluffed up by equally low-grade user reviews.

Continue reading

Chickens, eggs and N900s

In my previous article I alluded to Maemo community outreach as a “chicken and egg scenario”.  The exact point is that it can be hard for a corporation to justify outreach expenditures if there’s no proof of significant interest.  Easy to swallow as reality but still tough for a community evangelist to fully digest.

In this case that outreach translates to developers, particularly those attracted to Linux, Qt and especially the mobile computing ecosystem.

Continue reading

Maemo rubber hits the road

I just got back from the Maemo Developer event held in Santa Clara, California December 3 and 4.  The tenor was more about developer outreach than training but that was not a bad thing at all– sessions like these are needed to cultivate interest, especially amongst commercial contributors.

The trip was made all the more… well, exciting for me because everything was last minute.  I did not know for sure I would be attending until a week or so before, then received three day notice I would be presenting on behalf of the community.  Halfway there on the plane it became clear to me (thanks to GoGo wifi and Ovi mail) after a couple of exchanges with Maemo folks that the event’s main audience would come from the business side of the software world, which meant more changes to my presentation.  By the time I got done there was so much text on the slides I tripped myself up trying to read it!

Ah, the benefit of time to practice… ;)

Continue reading

Opening up to Open Source

It’s funny the turns Life takes.

I started programming in the eartly 1980s, on Timex Sinclair, Commodore 64 and TRS-80 computers in short order.  In those wild days when high-level languages were really coming into their own, free and open source software seemed more readily available than retail equivalents.  Hobbyist magazines, online bulletin boards and even the fledgling internet (pre WWW) were stuffed with code just waiting for eager learners like me to take and tweak.  There wasn’t much in the way of formal free and open source protocol at the time– that evolved soon enough though.

But as I evolved myself, from hobbyist to ad hoc developer for various employers, I found myself drawn in deeper and deeper to the closed source world.  I discovered I had a liking and knack for Visual Basic and thus fell into the Microsoft development vortex.

It’s a seductive and powerful sucker, too.  It was all too easy to be “bought off” by events with (ironically) free training, free food and even giveaways of free software.  I ultimately joined a Microsoft program that dumped thousands of dollars of tools in my lap for an embarrassingly small outlay.  Resistance was futile.

Yep, I was assimilated.

Continue reading