Since starting this blog after my last job loss I’ve taken Nokia to task over what I perceive to be shortcomings and errors, particularly in staffing and ambitious enterprise projects like Ovi.
But in the spirit of fairness and balance, and in preparation of my trip to Amsterdam for the Nokia-sponsored Maemo Summit 2009, I want to take a moment to acknowledge one team that I believe is doing a fantastic job: Maemo.
The Maemo project started small but with a big promise: deliver a commercial, highly-mobile touchscreen computer running a (mostly) open source Linux-based operating system named Maemo. This began with the simply-designed 770, improved dramatically with the retro-inspired N800, saw the introduction of a handy keyboard with the sturdy N810, and now stands to fulfill a large part of the potential with the exciting N900.
Through it all the Nokia Maemo software team has been the firewall for developer and even consumer frustration, and I say with much professional admiration they have seemingly weathered it well. The device guys appear pretty much insulated from outside criticism but I have to wonder if that will remain so very long– the N900 is garnering attention from a much broader audience than previous models, as one would expect, and surely this will in turn broaden and intensify the light of scrutiny.
But for now I’m focusing on the software guys and what they’re managing to do on incredibly short timetables and fewer resources than I would allot if I were king. ;) I get the feeling sometimes their efforts are not always fully appreciated so this post is for them: I am thankful for your work.
One thing Nokia does very well is identify, hire and cultivate extreme talent. In the case of Maemo, the company has outdone itself. Thanks all, and I look forward to what you do next!