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Comment My humble suggestion for a solution (Score 2) 178

1) All patents expire after 2 years. If you can't make money from having a 2-year monopoly on an invention, it obviously wasn't very good anyway. 2) Getting a patent costs a €LARGE_AMOUNT of money, which goes into a fund that the government uses to invest into research. 3) No sales bans. The only penatly for "violating" a patent is compensation for actual damages, the burden of proof for which lie on the patent holder. 4) If out of a random sample of five university students in the appropriate field, at least three find your idea obvious and/or trivial to come up with, your patent is rejected. 5) (Very) generous exemptions from the all of the above for non-profits, educational users and independent (non-corporate) inventors.

Submission + - The Argument against Android Forking (

An anonymous reader writes: In recent days, there have been many reports stating that numerous Android handset manufacturers are working on launching smartphones with their own forked versions of Android. Recent comments by Skyhook CEO, Ted Morgan, and the success of Amazon's Kindle Fire seem to have fanned these flames even more. But ignoring Skyhook's stormy relationship with Google, is this really a sound business strategy for OEMs? Let's take a look.

Comment Re:The Most Secure Mobile OS (Score 1) 291

E-mail uses push notifications, you make it sound like it's on a 30 minute polling interval but that's simply not the case - it's nearly instant, certainly every bit as fast as on Android. Twitter does the same thing. Just read the documentation if you don't want to take my word for it. Using polling for any kind of instant messaging is not something you want to do since it's massively inefficient, much better to let the server tell you when there's something new to fetch.

As for porting, what you are describing is the same on every platform. You have an iOS app and want to port it to Android? Better brush up on those Java skills because your ObjC is worthless there. You can theoretically use C/C++ as a lowest common denominator between the two but almost nobody does that except possibly for some very core functionality and then you have to write a ton of platform-specific wrappers for the device-dependent stuff anyway. Oh and the UI, which is probably the most time-consuming single part of your app if you want to get it right.

I will give you this - being the minority platform, WP7 certainly stands more to lose from not sharing a common language with Android/iOS than the other way around. I don't really want WP7 apps that are just least-effort ports of Android apps though, and if you're as concerned about battery life as you say then you should find the thought of porting over a big fat VM just to run a few more apps abhorrent. It's not like porting is that hard, and unlike Android, WP7 is actually fun to code for. I've put one app on the market already and am working on a second. Never could muster up the energy to do that for Android, well not on my spare time anyway, there's just too much pomp and ceremony required to get anything done. I do code for Android at work though, since they're paying me well to put up with it. :)

Comment Re:The Most Secure Mobile OS (Score 2) 291

Strange, I seem to have no trouble receiving mail while I'm doing other things on my WP7. Perhaps because the "extremely limited means" are actually quite sufficient. I believe limiting multitasking a bit is a tradeoff for better battery life, and that's certainly fine by me. Apps like navigation and music players (Spotify, Nokia Music) seem to have no trouble whatsoever with me switching to a different app and back. The web browser dutifully remembers which tabs I had open. So no, not a big deal at all. The Skype limitation I believe is a beta issue.

C/C++ support is probably coming eventually but - are you kidding me? Lack of a Java runtime an impediment? C# is by far a nicer language to program in, and is instantly accessible to any Java developer (being basically Java++ by design). Lack of Java support doesn't seem to have particularly hurt Apple in their quest for global mobile domination. The only possible use I can see for Java on WP7 would be to make porting of Android apps easier but they would feel right out of place on WP7 anyway since it has a very different UI.

Comment Re:The Most Secure Mobile OS (Score 5, Interesting) 291

Not really true anymore. I've had a Lumia 800 since november and the only two things I'm really missing now is a native app for Google+ (though the mobile web version works fine) and something that can talk to the OBD2 Bluetooth dongle I have for my car. Not exactly your Angry Birds of smartphone apps. Also, a lot of the WP7 apps feel more polished than their Android versions. The Facebook app for instance.

Comment Re:Feet, foot, inch? (Score 2) 54

Maybe this varies from country to country, but here in Sweden, the decimeter, deciliter, centimeter and centiliter, hectogram (typically just called "hecto" for short) are used very frequently and you would have a hard time finding anyone over the age of 7 who doesn't have an intuitive understanding of them.

However, we pretty much never use "deca" and "hectoliter" is very rare, though most people know what they are.

Comment Written by the captain of the losing team (Score 3) 447

This article stinks on so many levels. It is well-known that Nokia had an internal war going on for years around the Symbian platform, resulting in, among other things, the well-designed but effectively DOA Nokia N9 which in effect became the prototype for the Lumia 800. Maybe Meego would have gone on to be a market-leading platform, but it got buried by politics. Clearly this guy was on the losing team and now he's trying to use whatever authority he still thinks he has to trash-talk Nokia.

Yet the very first comment on his blog post is proof that Nokia is far from dead. No, market share for Windows Phone 7 isn't that great, but it's obviously growing at a rapid rate, and even if it never passes Android or iOS - there's plenty of room in the market for a third player. Blackberry was it for years until they shit the bed.

What the world most certainly doesn't need is yet another Android phone manufacturer. We already have more than enough. Microsoft had the cash that Nokia needed and an OS that, while not perfect, is certainly a differentiator. Couple this with Nokia's design sense and you get a phone which stands out in the sea of blandness (and the fact that the Lumia 800 alone now accounts for something like 85% of all WinPhone7 sales in the EU is evidence of this).

I don't want to go too much into subjective opinion here, but my own experiences with the Lumia 800 is that it is a damn good phone and a pleasure to develop for. It performs much better than its meager specs would suggest. It is certainly proving popular in my circle of friends, almost all of which owned high-end Android phones before. Thanks to the apparent ease of porting stuff from Xbox, there is a ton of great games for it. And it's being marketed VERY competently - certainly better than any Android phone I've seen except possibly Samsung's. I have a very hard time believing it will flop.

However - and this is important - even if I'm wrong, Microsoft can easily afford not to have Windows Phone 7 be an instant success. They are swimming in money. And so can Nokia, because they are feeding off Microsoft. It's happened before with the Xbox, the same Xbox that got laughed at and is now making enough money that Microsoft can afford to keep going at the smartphone business until they succeed.
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So... hi, Slashdot. I used to be really active here, but now I mostly lurk and read. I've missed you.

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