Saturday 15 January 2011

A quick thought - and a possible explanation?

Well below is something I've seen written up before on various web sites & forums - so no credit to me - but it could certainly be a good explanation for a fair number of business projects, proposals, technologies and products I've been pitched over time :-
In The Beginning Was The Plan
And The Plan had Assumptions
And The Assumptions Were Without Form
And The Plan Was Without Substance
And The Darkness was upon the face of the workers

and they spoke amongst themselves, saying 
"It is a crock of st, and it stinketh"

and the workers went unto their Supervisors and sayeth "It is a pail of dung and none may abide the odour thereof"

and the Supervisors went unto their Managers and sayeth unto them, "It is a container of excrement and it is very strong, such that none may abide by it"

and the Managers went unto their Directors and sayeth "It is a vessel of fertilizer and it has great strength"

and the Directors went unto the Vice Presidents and sayeth unto them, "It promotes growth and is very powerful"

and the Vice Presidents went unto the President and sayeth unto him, "This new Plan will actively promote the growth and efficiency of The Company"

and the President looked upon the Plan and saw that it was good and The Plan became Policy.
Certainly worth remembering that sometimes there is nothing better than clear and direct communication to the people at the very top, and never assume the people at the top understand what's really going on, or being done, or sold...

Sunday 2 January 2011

Some thoughts on little green men

No not the aliens that your typical tinfoil hat wearing nutter will recount in detail whilst drooling slightly - but as some of you will know I've been a user of Google Android for a couple of years now, on a number of different phones, versions and builds. Currently I'm using the native Android v2.2.1 on the Google reference Nexus One platform - and I have to say it's really rather good...

Naturally there are however some annoyances that I'd like to see tweaked :-

Memory Related
  • More memory - the standard 512 MB ROM & 512 MB RAM (and in my unit an additional 32GB of SD card) might sound big compared to some devices, but the phone really would benefit from at least 1GB (but better 2GB) of RAM. With 160+ applications installed I find I'm now at the point of 'remove one to install one' re the dreaded 'low memory' warning...
  • Cache management - with a number of common applications (eg Browser, Tweetdeck etc) I've started to notice that they consume RAM memory as cache but don't release it automatically, leading to applications having 10-15MB of RAM memory as cache (often triggering the 'low memory' warning)  until you manually clear the cache using the application manager.
  • Not an Android core issue but some applications should handle memory better - for instance ChompSMS stores MMS images in RAM and not on SD storage, and refuses to receive text messages if the 'low memory' indicator is showing despite having GBs of SD card space free.
SD Card Storage Related
  • There should be the ability to force any application to be moved or installed onto SD card storage - works fine on 'rooted' ROMs so should be a possible setting for standard ROMs
  • Google to enable their applications to install on SD card storage, rather than the majority currently refusing to support it (for example gMail, Earth, Maps, Voice Search, YouTube, Listen, )
  • To be able to 'partition' the SD card (or have a better USB driver) so that when the phone is connected to a PC via USB the applications & widgets on the SD card continue to operate.
  • Fix the update bug that occasionally occurs (ie twice in 4 months for me) for applications installed onto SD card storage detailed here and fixed here
Application MarketPlace
MarketPlace improvements, for it to have :-
  • Verified developers - ability for developers to get some for of 'tested & verified safe' certificate from a trusted authority, to ensure that the developer name shown in the MarketPlace really is from the perceived developer / company
  • Verified applications - ability for applications to get some for of 'tested & verified safe' certificate from a trusted authority (eg to protect against malware & trojans etc)
  • The application profile should be updated to show if the application supports move/install to SD card storage, and how much RAM the application uses after install (not just how much storage it needs)
  • Ability to manage my phone's applications from a desktop PC browser - to be able to uninstall existing applications, browse & search the marketplace to install applications and upload my own APK applications for install. All of these changes to then be synchronised over-the-air to the device.
  • To be able to do 'bulk backup/restore/installs' of applications onto devices - eg when I change device to be able to 'backup' all my existing installed apps and then 'restore/install' them onto new device in a single action
  • To better align the various MarketPlace versions around the world - it's getting more than a bit irritating seeing applications that only exist in the USA version of the MarketPlace and not the international ones
  • Sort out billing and payments to international developers - it's frustrating to only be able to get the 'lite' or 'free' version of an application via the MarketPlace, but then have to go to some other website to purchase a license key for the full featured version.
  • It would be good to add-in age rating 'certificates' (eg as per films & PC games etc) for applications in the MarketPlace
  • To be able to search and/or filter the display of applications in the MarketPlace by attributes (eg age suitability, support SD or not, size, release / update dates etc)
  • Support for folders on the home screens (and more home screens - think a 5x5 grid of screens rather than current 1x5) - to allow applications to be grouped together into nested folders on any of the home screens
  • Add back the WMA / WMV codecs that were previously in Android 1.x - yes MP3/MP4 are fine but support for WMx should also be standard as it was originally
  • WiFi connectivity - now it might just by the CostlyCo utter junk that I'm currently suffering as a wireless router, but there does appear to be some fragility with working with wireless N based wifi networks
  • Of course the topic of proxy servers and authenticated proxy servers via the wifi connection needs to be resolved in order to be able to use to enterprise networks properly
  • Enable Live Wallpapers to work automatically upon reboot if they've been installed onto SD
  • Full native OS / device backup/restore into the cloud - not just contacts and application purchases but all content on the phone. Yes you can purchase applications to do this but it really should be standard.
  • To be able to completely uninstall some of the standard OS bundled applications I never use or want (eg Facebook & Twitter native clients etc)
  • To be able to do remote phone location discovery/tracking and also secure erase management from a PC browser (ie should I leave my phone somewhere I can remotely discover where it is and issue a 'remote destroy' command etc)
  • It would also be rather useful if they could 'fix' the Google 'Finance' application, as it spend more time failing to work or synchronise than it does working
For some of my previous posts re Android see here - as I said I'm a major fan of Android and what it's done to overturn a lacklustre & incumbent marketplace (anybody remember Symbian?). So for 2011 I'm looking forward to Android v2.3 & v3.0 to see just what of above gets done, and how far this real OS flies onwards past the competition...