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ShoZu Slideshow Beta for Consumers - about to launch

Submitted by Roland on Mon, 2007-09-17 13:05

cool! Shozu slideshow - another viral attractor for ShoZu. Now if only Cognima and the ShoZu team would fix the crashing bugs that I experience when there are over 200 or so photos on my Nokia N93 (which I think is an S60 problem but what do I know? As always willing to run debug versions to help fix this and to act as a tester for S60 and ShoZu teams)

From markbole: ShoZu Slideshow Beta for Consumers - about to launch:


ShoZu is soon to launch a web widget that runs on all major social networking sites as well as other online services such as blogs. ShoZu Slideshow creates a virtual photo frame for camera phone pictures and videos, that anyone can create and anyone can post to any web page on the internet. The content can be updated at any time directly from the mobile phone and updates will be seen immediately by anyone who has a copy of your Slideshow.


Here's my ShoZu slideshow widget:

Nokia N81 & N95 8GB finally have adequate RAM

Submitted by Roland on Thu, 2007-08-30 04:40

I hope the increased N81 and N95 RAM (it's doubled) means I can finally run ShoZu, Jaiku (and heck maybe even a VOIP program) simultaneously and have hundreds of pictures and a few videos without S60 crashing with out of memory errors. Fingers crossed.

From Nokia N81 Q&A Discussion: Darla Mack - Nokia S60 News and Reviews:


Q: How much RAM does the N81 have, and has there been any improvements in sound quality? A: the amount of free RAM will be ~90MB


Russ Beattie Agrees that Nokia should adopt open source core

Submitted by Roland on Thu, 2007-07-26 12:24

Russ Beattie agrees with me that Nokia should adopt an open source core.

FROM Nokia and The Next Gen Mobile GUI


Point 4 is something I’ve written about before: Symbian had its chance to reach critical mass, and didn’t. It may continue to gain developers and new phones, but they’ve hit the high water mark in terms of rate of adoption and units… From this point on, Symbian is going to be doing that slow fade into technological obscurity. Let me put it like this: Symbian is not a platform that any true innovators would ever base their ideas on going forward, and without innovation an OS is dead. Once Nokia moves on to something else, it’ll quickly go away forever. And what would Nokia move to? Linux of course - as shown by their two outstanding web tablets the 770 and N800. The quicker Nokia starts moving that OS to their top-tier mobile phones, the better, IMHO.


Nokia: Buy ShoZu and be done with it :-) !

Submitted by Roland on Thu, 2007-07-26 05:28

<armchair ceo>
One sentence: “Nokia buy ShoZu”

Fix its memory issues, make it work with absolutely everything (it already works with many many sites) and then make it part of S60
</armchair ceo>

This Twango acquisition makes no sense to me; buy a service nobody uses!?! A ShoZu acquisition makes much more sense; it's a great albeit flawed app (S60 memory issues) that works with all the cool services like flickr,, any MetaWeblogAPI enabled blog, etc, etc.

From atmaspheric | endeavors » Blog Archive » Why did Nokia acquire Twango?:


If Nokia’s tag line is Connecting People, why are they going out of their way to develop new stand-alone services, rather than working with what’s already present and being used by communities globally. They could really just focus enabling the experience from Mobile to web and back. From a user perspective, I would much rather have an application or service that could talk with everything else I use to make it simple for content to go back and forth. This would make it easy for me and easy for my friends to stay in touch. We already know Facebook is working on the connection with the desktop and Jaiku, Facebook and even Plaxo offer ways to have content from other syndicate-able sources appear in your profile, but no one has come up with way to link with your mobile.


Couldn't get Bluetooth console working with Python on my N93 - Super Happy Dev House Redux Part 2

Submitted by Roland on Mon, 2007-05-14 07:11

I couldn't do the most basic thing and connect my with my Python running on my Nokia N93. Aaargh!

I followed the Using the Python for Series 60 Bluetooth Console from OS X HOW TO from Erk Smartt but was unsuccessful.

Invoking the Bluetooth console from the python app on the Nokia N93 worked but then after typing "screen /dev/tty.BT_CONSOLE", I get the following error messages: "Cannot open line '/dev/tty.BT_CONSOLE' for R/W: Resource busy " followed by "Sorry, could not find a PTY. ".

What am I doing wrong? I know I had this working with my Mac and Series 60 Python on the N70 back in the day so it's a bit frustrating!

Nokia: please build Christian Lindholm's Transformer Mobile OS around an open source core

Submitted by Roland on Tue, 2007-05-08 05:49

Awesome vision (I am not a fan of Lifeblog (his previous vision) but I am fan of Christian! And of course I am a fan of Series 60 which was one of Christian's first visions!). Go Christian go! Wouldn't it be cool if Christian Lindholm built this OS at a startup around an open source core like Linux and wouldn't it be cool if Nokia bought that OS and used it on future phones? This would blow the iPhone out of the water. In the long run, this is what has to be done if the iPod-ization of mobile phones is to be avoided IMHO (but hey I could be wrong :-) !)

FROM My speech at MEX, The SW Transformer A Vision for a mobile OS:


I was asked by Marek Pawlowski from PMM to give a keynote at the MEX conference, a small mobile user experience conference. It is great small conference with key people in mobile user experience.

My brief for the talk was this manifesto:

"Manifesto point #4:

Handsets, applications and services should be more aware of the user's physical environment and adapt to provide the most appropriate interface for sound and visual conditions. We think multi-modal interfaces should be supported on many more mobile devices and can dramatically improve the user experience."


We are at a stage where a new mobile operating system should be created. One that enables the creation of a cheap monoblock enabling best of breed convergence of mobility and computing. I envision an OS that morphs to accommodate both moving use and mobile use. Focused use and multi-tasking. I call it a Transformer OS.

One way to think of this is to think of RSS in terms of comand. Each command or feature in the user experience is wrapped into a meta language of context. This language of context will drive the use cases and the rendering. We do not only separate funtion and presentation we make function and context interdependant.

With such an operating system we would tear down classic application boundaries: like calling, camera, idle, and calendar into a fluid dynamic environment. The operating system is broader than the footprint of the silicon. It extends into the environment and the network.

I think this kind of device and system could be a massive hit in emerging markets where they choose a mobile before they buy a computer.


Nokia S60 3rd Edition Devices Need to run Positioning app to activate external GPS?!?

Submitted by Roland on Thu, 2007-05-03 15:02

This might eliminate the need to run Nokia maps to get ShoZu to put GPS coordinates in photos. Need to try this. Cyprien can I borrow that GPS again :-) ?

FROM Nokia S60 3rd Edition Applications Review » Tips & Tricks: Accessing Hidden Apps (Navigator, Landmarks, etc):


One last thing to note is that some people may have experienced problems when trying to use apps that require an external bluetooth GPS receiver. Within s60 3rd devices there is an app called Positioning that allows you to enable/disable your GPS methods. My N80 for example, shipped with bluetooth GPS disabled and I wasn’t able to use any navigation apps with my Nokia LD-3W until I enabled it.


My Symbian History - 7610 with my own money, rest from Nokia Blogger Relations

Submitted by Roland on Sun, 2007-04-15 21:55

Don't usually play these tag games, but this will be the exception that proves the rule. My first Symbian device was the Nokia 7610 which I bought unlocked in August 2004 from a Vietnamese grey market vendor here (thanks Harry!) in Vancouver.

I bought the 7610 because of its 1 megapixel camera which was fab for its time and also because S60 was and is a platform where I knew I could get 3rd party apps and possibly develop my own. I bought the 7610 as a belated 40th birthday gift to myself (much better than a sports car :-) and much cheaper!). I was was smart enough to also buy an unlimited GPRS data plan for my phone which is no longer available in Canada and allows me to monthly use about 250 MB of data traffic photos and videos which is a lot over GPRS.

Took plenty of photos and uploaded many with HuginAndMugin (which my friend Simon wrote in Java; the Java mobile platform annoyed me back then because it couldn't take 1 megapixel photos and it annoys me now because there is a new JSR released seemingly every month and every phone has a different implementation of the Java mobile platform but I am still willing to be convinced that Java on mobile is actually a viable platform ) and via ShoZu.

Went to BloggerCon III where I spoke about HuginAndMugin at the mobile session and met Andy who later became the man behind Nokia Blogger Relations.

From there, the rest is history. N70 and then N91, N93 and N73 and many, many photos and videos taken with all of these phones. Hopefully N95 soon. Oh and I also had a Newton 2000 and one of the first Palm Pilots. I used the Newton alot and the Palm for about 3 or 4 months; never liked Palm; too simple, really ugly fonts compared to the Newton :-) and didn't meet my geeky needs!

Except for the memory problems and the user interface problems of S60v3 (both of which can be fixed or improved, more on that later in a future post), I am quite happy with Symbian and S60.

I truly believe that if the iPhone is 1/4 as usable as it appears and ships 1/2 of the units Apple expects to, then this will be great competition and cause S60's memory problems and usability to be fixed rapidly. Vive la competition!

FROM atmaspheric | endeavors » My Symbian History:


Ok - that was probably far too long and rambling, but I suppose that’s the point of this exercise. For the next round, I will tag people from my Twitter and Jaiku contact lists and ping Matthew Miller, Roland Tanglao and Ken Camp.


N80i not supported by ShoZu Geotagging feature

Submitted by Roland on Wed, 2007-02-28 15:52

OK, the N80i is not supported. I hope the N93 is supported! Sorry about those having comment problems; I need to upgrade to Drupal 5 to fix it. Soon!

FROM Geotagging not working (Nokia N73):


You won't need to wake the GPS antenna, ShoZu will do this when necessary so you don't need to do any more than pair the device. What you will need, however, is a very strong GPS signal. ShoZu will wait until you have signal from 5 or more satellites before tagging your images because any less than this can produce inaccurate results. You'll notice sometimes on weak signal that your navigation software will jitter for a moment, if we tagged images at this time they would be way off. So please make sure you don't just have signal, but you have a very strong signal. We've done this because we figure geotagging is no use unless it's 100% accurate all the time!

By the way Roland, the N80i is not supported as yet and there are a lot of memory issues on this phone so just be weary of this also. Tried to post a reply on your blog but it had an internal server error and now I'm listed as a spammer and it won't let me post! Now's the time I finally get to ask you for support :-D


N80i + ShoZu + Tom Tom GPS works 50% of the time -N80i, S60, ShoZu, or Tom Tom bug?

Submitted by Roland on Wed, 2007-02-28 08:22

GeoWalk Bryght to VAG - Yahoo map

Using a borrowed Tom Tom Navigator 6 GPS from Cyprien (thanks!), I did a little outdoor GeoWalk from Bryght at 1 Alexander to the Vancouver Art Gallery, I took 29 photos with my Nokia N80i. Only roughly 50%, 15 out of 29 were geotagged, shouldn't that number be 100% or closer to it?

Is this a S60, N80i, ShoZu, or Tom Tom bug? Suggestions to make this closer to 100% gratefully received.

Please improve memory management and thumbnail generation in S60 Feature Pack 2

Submitted by Roland on Thu, 2007-02-08 07:37

I don't need any new features in S60 FP2. Please fix the following bugs:

  • Memory Management (may not be a bug, maybe N series phones just need much more memory, my guestimate would be double the current memory)
  • Thumbnail race condition with ShoZu (might be a ShoZu bug but just in case! I want my reliable ShoZu back! ShoZu on the pre S60V3 devices seemed much more reliable).

Making multiple apps run fine without running out of memory (I can make all of my N series phones run out of memory by simply running the S60 browser, surfing to and using the Nokia wireless keyboard) and ShoZu work perfectly would greatly improve the S60 user experience in my opinion!

From See into S60:


S60 3rd Edition Feature Pack 2 has been announced! On Friday I'll be doing an interview for the Voice of S60 with the head of S60 Platforms Marketing, Mikko Röntynen. Please send me any questions or comments you might have for Mikko and I'll ask him during the interview! You can leave your questions/comments below in the comments section...


Symbian "bad" OS from developer point of view?!?

Submitted by Roland on Sun, 2007-02-04 23:34

UPDATE: I don't really expect Nokia to respond. "Can't wait for Nokia's response to this!" was a crude attempt at humour that obviously failed.

Hmmm. If it's really this bad (I am unencumbered by technical knowledge :-) when it comes to Symbian other than the user level knowledge that S60 on the mobile phones I get for free from Nokia crashes and hangs a lot), I'd suggest to Nokia to "pull a Mac OS X" and move to another OS or acquire one or develop one. Can't wait for Nokia's response to this!

FROM Readers Write About Symbian, OS X and the iPhone:


One developer writes, “In most regards, Symbian's reputation as a modern, robust, stable and advanced OS for smartphones is not well deserved. Sure, Symbian works, it has a very long feature list, and it's probably even the best smartphone OS available today. But it's mostly because the competition is pathetic than anything else.

“I have a done several Symbian projects and have a thorough knowledge and low-level understanding of Symbian. And I just hate it. It's a very bad and uninspiring OS even from a programmers point of view.”


N73 Review Part 5 - Steven Wittens reviews the N73

Submitted by Roland on Thu, 2007-02-01 06:06

Fellow Bryght guy Steven's N73 review is brutally honest (he's Belgian but still just as blunt as the Germans)! I agree with his review, the N73 is a sweet cameraphone marred only by the less than optimal and not easy to use S60 software (which is better than the competition but could learn a thing or two from Apple's iPhone) and by the non standard ports (the POP port is cumbersome and unnecessary but to be fair to Nokia the competition features lots of proprietary connectors too)! Luckily it appears Nokia is "doing the right thing" and standardizing on USB and standard headphone ports!

From Nokia N73 Review | Steven Wittens -


After two months, the only thing I've consistently used other than voice calls and SMS is the camera, because it is really good for a phone. All the pictures on my Flickr page since December 1st were taken with the N73. I also listen to music whenever I can, but the MP3 player and proprietary headphones are too cumbersome.

The only part of the N73 that really stands out for me is the phone's form factor. I love that in spite of all its features, it's only as big as a typical phone. It's clearly designed for snapping pictures with and the screen is large and gorgeous. If the data-cable and file system didn't suck so much, I'd probably use it as a USB stick too (or better, if you could mount Bluetooth storage as local, ejectable drives).

Having used this phone, I can clearly see why traditional cellphone makers should fear Apple's iPhone. I've consistenty avoided using the phone's built-in tools like address book and calendar editing, because doing it on my Mac is orders of magnitude easier and faster. From what I've seen, the iPhone changes that. I really wish the iPhone will bring a fresh wave of usability improvements for mobile devices. But, if usability was all that mattered, we wouldn't be seeing so many Windows installs out there either...


N93 Review Part 9 - S60 Browser runs out of memory with flickr and wirelesskeyboard

Submitted by Roland on Thu, 2007-01-11 19:46

Aaargh. The N93 S60 Browser consistently runs out of memory when surfing to flickr and using the Nokia wireless keyboard.

Hopefully fixed in next firmware upgrade. C'mon Nokia put more memory in these phones! BTW Nokia TV Out is great (this pic is of my TV)!

N80i Review Part 5 - Truphone to South Africa success but then it "crashed" the phone

Submitted by Roland on Thu, 2006-12-21 03:56

Truphone-ing to South Africa was a success on the N80i but the quality wasn't as good as my call to Holland. There was no echo but there was a noticeable lag between the time I spoke and the time it was understood at the other end and vice versa.

After the call the N80i "crashed". In quotation marks because the phone still worked but it wouldn't re-acquire my cellphone provider, Fido. Instead of displaying my provider, it displayed nothing (as if the SIM had been deactivated or I was in offline mode).

A bug in the SIP stack on the N80i, a bug in TruPhone, a bug somewhere else in my S60 V3 firmware manifesting itself (I am running V 4.0632.0.38 13-10-2006 RM-92 Nokia N80 (01)) ?

I fixed it by rebooting the phone!

N91 Review Part 18 - Great iPod Phone for power users not a blogaphone

Submitted by Roland on Fri, 2006-11-17 23:26

This is the final post of my N91 Review series. One sentence summary: The N91 is an awesome music phone if you are a power user who's not in love with Smart Playlists and if you are not looking for a blogaphone.


  1. Great iPod phone if you can live without iTunes Smart playlists OR you don't mind drag and drop
  2. Great Standard hardware ports - Down with the pop port. Up with headphone jacks and USB jacks!
  3. WiFi rocks - I will never pay my own money for a phone without WiFi. The value of having WiFi cannot be underestimated if you live and work in a sea of WiFi which is almost everywhere in Vancouver and elsewhere that I frequent.
  4. ShoZu over WiFi rocks


  1. Symbian Series 60 v3 is not stable enough
  2. ShoZu on S60 is not stable enough (not to diss Cognima or Symbian, it's just the way it is, hopefully fixed in firmware upgrades and ShoZu upgrades) - in my opinion ShoZu working stably especially with WiFi phones should be used to test S60 and if it's not stable enough that S60 v3 phone should not ship. But I am biased :-) !

N91 Review Part 15 - After Opera Mini installed, spontaneous phone reboots

Submitted by Roland on Thu, 2006-11-02 06:32

Here's what I did:

  1. updated firmware on N91
  2. reformatted hard disk
  3. installed LifeBlog

At this point everything was OK

I then installed Opera Mini (latest version, the built in web browser based on Apple's Web Kit doesn't work too well on my N91; it runs out of memory when you go to flickr for example! It's fine on Boris's E61 with flickr so this may be an N91 specific issue) and noticed over the next couple days several spontaneous reboots of the phone. Was this because of Opera Mini or is this just a coincidence? I have read (but can't dig up the link) of other people having the same problem

Needless to say I am not impressed with the stability of Series 60 v3. As an ex-developer I can however see that: i) it could very well be Opera Mini (but Java programs are sandboxed and shouldn't cause reboots right :-) ? ) ii) no software is perfect (although I didn't experience reboots like this with the N70) iii) this is Nokia's first phone with a hard disk which is much slower than flash memory which most Nokia phones use instead

My hope is that this will be fixed in future firmware updates and/or Opera Mini updates.

N91 Review Part 14 - ShoZu still rocks but is not stable on my N91

Submitted by Roland on Thu, 2006-10-12 06:39

ShoZu rocks! With the N91 and WiFi, you can set it up so that if you live in a "sea of WiFi" (i.e. spend most of your time at places with WiFi like I do), that it will automatically upload photos and videos over WiFi to flickr or wherever you want. No r*poff GPRS or 3G data plan needed.

Shozu is great on the N91 .... when it works. Unfortunately even though I am using the latest firmware on the N91 and the latest version of ShoZu, reformatted the Hard Drive, crossed my 't's and dotted my 'i's and tried throwing salt over my left shoulder :-( ShoZu starts freezing the phone after 50 or so photos.

I don't think my phone is a lemon :( Everything else works! My unfortunate reality is that adding ShoZu to the mix, destabilizes my N91. Lifeblog (even though I hate its 10 photos at a time limitation) works so it's not the WiFi stack (or so it would appear).

I blame ShoZu's tight integration with the operating system. My guess is that ShoZu has some sort of event handler or interrupt or some such operating system integration which is buggy or problematic in Symbian Series 60 v3. I figure it's a V3 issue since I uploaded over GPRS thousands of photos with ShoZu and the 7610 and N70 (both of which are v2 phones) without this instability.

Lazyweb HELP! I'll buy whoever fixes my problem lunch. Until then, I'll keep doing the ShoZu reset dance every 50 or so photos.

N91 Review Part 9 - V1.10.030 05-05-06 RM-43 N91 (17.01) Firmware first impressions

Submitted by Roland on Thu, 2006-07-13 13:39

Now running V1.10.030 05-05-06 RM-43 N91 (17.01) Firmware courtesy of Nokia Vancouver (whose lab is pictured above in a picture by Richard Smith).

First impressions:

  • Still have out of memory error in Nokia Webkit web browser which makes it almost unusable. Luckily Opera and Opera Mini work well.
  • Haven't seen the theme reset bug. Hopefully it's fixed by this version of the firmware
  • ShoZu beta crashed again, aaargh! Other people don't have this problem with their N91 and ShoZu and other devices running ShoZu and Series 60 v3 like the N80. I am going to reformat the hard drive and do a reset of the device before I make a definitive judgement on this.

N91 Review Part 7: Firmware blues cured by reformatting hard disk?!?

Submitted by Roland on Fri, 2006-07-07 04:47

I had the N91 firmware blues. I was having the theme reset problem and various other weird problems (including a beta version of ShoZu crashing randomly) reported by others as a problem with the V1.00.028.13 29.03.06 RM-43 version of the N91 firmware that I have (apparently V1.10.030 05-05-06 RM-43 and newer versions fix these problems as reported at mobile 9) until I reformatted the hard disk.

Fingers crossed, things are working now (for me a phone isn't working until ShoZu works :-) ! ). It looks like my problems were due to one or more of the following

  1. the firmware version
  2. the Nokia podcasting app (which is in beta)
  3. the Nokia Wireless Keyboard app (which doesn't officially support the N91 but I was assured would work)
  4. puTTY series 60 v3 beta or
  5. the ShoZu beta

which were the only apps I had installed (and yes I am well aware as an ex developer of the perils of running beta software which is why I am not flaming or blaming anybody :-) ! ).


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