Various topics on technology, mainly computers, software, open source, and the like.
US President-Elect Barack Obama was on an interview with Barbara Walters on ABC yesterday.
Among the things that was discussed, was his intention on keeping the Blackberry he currently uses.
What struck me was this quote:
"One of the things that I'm going to have to work through is how to break through the isolation -- the bubble that exists around the president.
Arun Sarin, CEO of Vodafone, the largest cell phone provider in the world, is urging handset makers to cut down the number of operating systems they use.
He wants the 30 to 40 to go down to 3-5. Fewer operating systems would ease the job of developers, who would
only have to design software to work in several different iterations.
He praised Apple for raising the bar for the user interface.
Canadians pay one of the highest mobile phone rates in the developed world. This is due to an oligopoly by the triad (Bell, Telus, and Rogers). The OECD says that Canada is 29th out of 30 countries when it comes to cost.
The government has realized this and is now opening the market to competition.
40% of the spectrum will be reserved for new entrants, who would have the right to rent towers from the incumbents at reasonable costs.
Finally, Google announced its mobile strategy.
It is centered around the Open Handset Alliance (OHC), which has members such as HTC, LG, Motorola, Samsung, T-Mobile and Sprint. Google's offering is Android, which is a mobile phone software stack licensed under an Open Source licesen (Apache V2).
Rumors are mounting that Google will unveil its gPhone strategy tomorrow.
The buzz says that Google will announce an open source based platform supported via an alliance of most phone manufacturers.
Here are some articles on the topic.
The Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) and VISA will trial the use mobile phones as wallets in 2008. The trials will be done in Ontario, and will be limited to amounts of $25.
This is finally catching up to what some countries in Scandinavia have.
Two wireless providers in Canada started offering laptop access via PC cards.
Bell Canada has introduced laptop cards that provide internet connectivity anywhere in coverage areas. The ads tout the fact that they can be used in a cab or on a train.
These cards use the mobile phone frequencies and data infrastructure (EVDO).
The monthly unlimited plan is $75 which is reasonable.
A survey by IT World Canada reveals that employers are seeking experienced workers over new graduates.
In the survey, 61% expect to hire this year. Staffing in 2007 is up 12% for IT workers. The number of IT employees on payrolls is expected to increase by 2%. 68% of new hires are expected to have 10 years or more experience in other companies.Average total compensation increase across the IT industry is 4.1% from 2006 to 2007.
Yet another resource shortage in the tech industry. Companies are having trouble filling tech jobs, and offer perks to try to attract talent. Builder.au has likened that to the dot com era culture.
This CBC article takes a Canadian view of the issue, with enrolment in tech courses being flat, while graduates have no trouble getting interviews and job offers.
After trying the Garmin StreetPilot c330 Navigator GPS, I decided to try a unit that was a hybrid between the car directions GPS and the handheld outdoor/trail GPS.
While a car directions GPS gives turn by turn guidance to get you to your destination, a handheld would provide tracking, a compass, waypoints, ...etc.