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Future of Tech: Huge Screens, ARM Servers, Geosocial Everywhere

Posted by admin | Posted in Cell Phones & Plans | Posted on 29-05-2011

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A new “geosocial” app called Sonar is getting the attention of Steve Peltzman, CIO of the Metropolitan Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York.

The app, which is loaded on his iPhone, combines location information with Twitter and Facebook networks, creating an opportunity for making connections. “It will be able to tell us who is in the museum right now,” Peltzman said.

Some might see this capability as potentially creepy, and Peltzman is aware of social media’s downside. But he sees a way to make it work, as well as a need to use the kinds of capabilities Sonar and others will offer.

Participating in social media is critical, Peltzman said. “If you want to be a business leader today, you have to be on it,” he said.

Peltzman meets regularly with social media developers, investors and authors to get a sense of future trends for social networking.

Frank Gillett, an analyst at Forrester, is also focused on the future and is forecasting some of the changes in hardware over the next five years. Both he and Peltzman made presentations at Forrester’s IT Forum here.

“Hardware innovation will continue to rile the tech ecosystems through 2016, forcing software and services strategists to adjust continuously,” Gillett said. “We are entering a period of significant turmoil.”

Here are some of their predictions:

Data center diversity will increase

The “Wintel” monoculture will see increasing pushback from application-specific servers. Oracle’s Sparc-based Exadata Storage Server is one example. “There will be a growing category of application-specific boxes,” which may or may not have x86 chips in them, Gillett said.

GPU chips, which are good for highly repetitive parallel compute tasks, will also gain traction. Gillett also expects ARM chips to enter the server market, with tiny, low-power 64-bit processors that, for the right workloads, will be more efficient than x86 systems. One company working on low-power ARM servers is Calxeda.

Big displays become the norm

Users will move to 27-in. and bigger displays and increasingly use two of them, expanding the desktop to the limits of peripheral range. But by 2016, the notion of what is a display will change as well and will include opportunistic display technologies that, for instance, project desktops on walls, Gillett predicted.

There will also be increasing use of natural user interfaces with sensors that can detect movement, interpret facial expressions and get data on the local environment.

Minority Report-type advertising enters the scene

In the 2002 movie Minority Report, as lead actor Tom Cruise walks into a mall, his retinas are scanned to identify him, which leads to a series of personalized ads. Peltzman doesn’t believe retina scans will be utilized anytime soon, but he clearly sees the rapid approach of advertising connected to users via geolocation, with more one-to-one ads based on who you that arrive via social media networks.

Peltzman said he can imagine using Sonar to send a message to someone via a social network, such as a discount on museum membership.

Illustration: Christoph NiemanSmartphones won’t necessarily rule

The idea that the smartphone will morph into an all-purpose device doesn’t ring true with Gillett. He expects to see multiple devices and displays, and big improvements in the PC. He is expecting hybrid PCs that use SSDs to speed the system, but disks as well. This blending of storage with the system will require application changes to take advantage of it, he said.

Social media’s relationship to the bottom line comes into focus

MoMA has made social media a key IT direction and has a Web page devoted to all of its networking links, including a Flickr group for people to upload photos they have taken at the museum.

It has more than 750,000 fans on Facebook and 582,000 followers on Twitter.

To help manage its social networking, the museum’s IT and marketing departments share an employee who reports to both.

But Peltzman said it isn’t easy to show how social networking generates money. Using social media for direct funding efforts can undermine it, he argues.

That also makes it difficult to tell the business exactly how much value is delivered by social media. But he believes that in time, analytical tools will arrive that can show how social media does contribute.

Patrick Thibodeau covers SaaS and enterprise applications, outsourcing, government IT policies, data centers and IT workforce issues for Computerworld. Follow Patrick on Twitter at @DCgov or subscribe to Patrick’s RSS feed. His e-mail address is pthibodeau@computerworld.com.

Computerworld

For more enterprise computing news, visit Computerworld. Story copyright © 2011 Computerworld Inc. All rights reserved.

Blackberry Bold Review – the Wave of the Future for Home and Office

Posted by admin | Posted in Blackberry | Posted on 28-02-2010

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For many years Blackberry was the only smartphone available, and it was not designed for personal use. Certainly individuals could use it if they desired, but it was not intended for that purpose. It is highly unlikely that many individuals were interested not only because the price was commercially based but also because it was heavier than the average cell phone, and people just didn’t want to tote it with them. In spite of the inconvenience, personal users stayed with text messaging or mobile IM’s rather than paying extra for a Blackberry.

Once other manufacturers began to make smartphones, we began to see newer and smaller Blackberry’s such as the Pearl and the Curve. These were designed more for the personal user and were RIM’s attempts to capture the individual market. With the introduction of the Blackberry Bold, RIM is clearing to make more of a mark in the smartphone industry as they have added a number of features that have never been on any previous Blackberry such as a bigger display to allow the user to read longer emails easier and support for Microsoft Office that allows the user to view documents almost as they would appear on a desktop computer. This involves using Docs on the Go, a mobile program that supports Microsoft Word, Excel and PowerPoint.

Making the move to a Blackberry Bold will make a big difference in the way you communicate with family, friends or co-workers. Instead of having to rely on text messaging, you can use email instead. If you choose text messaging, the QWERTY keyword that is standard on a Blackberry Bold will make for quicker and easier conversations. The fact that RIM is adding so many features that have never been on previous Blackberry issues shows that it is coming into 3G technology and 21st century requirements. The Blackberry is no longer just for business use although personal users will likely prefer the smaller Pearl and Curve.

Since the Blackberry Bold is not yet available everywhere, you may have to search a little harder to find a Blackberry Bold review based on actual usage. It may be worth your while to wait and see it when it is released in your area so you can see all of the new features firsthand as well as discover what mobile phone deals may be in effect at the time. Keep in mind that if you already have a carrier, there may be different mobile phone deals with other carried. If the mobile phone deals are more important to you than the carrier, take some time to inquire, but if you are satisfied with what you current provider offers, it’s simply a matter of waiting until you can take advantage of any mobile phone deals that are available through your current mobile phone provider. With all of the new features RIM has put into the Blackberry Bold, there is little doubt this model is going to be the most popular of all the Blackberry models that have been sold so far.

Nokia 5800 Product Focus – is This the Future of Touchscreen Mobile Phones?

Posted by admin | Posted in Symbian | Posted on 10-01-2010

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Recently announced is the first mainstream touchscreen device from Finnish manufacturer Nokia. They’ve made touchscreen mobile phones before, but… nothing like the awesomeness of the new Nokia 5800!

Nokia and touchscreens – lessons from history

Believe it or not, the Nokia 5800 isn’t the first of their mobile phones to feature a touchscreen. That accolade goes all the way back to the Nokia 7700, a mobile phone that, well, never actually got released. But it was still the first, nevertheless. It’s just a shame, really, that Nokia’s first attempt at a touchscreen mobile phone was, frankly, rubbish, since it had a bit of a dodgy interface, the looks… well, the looks were described as anything from ‘a bit misjudged’, to ‘looks like a taco’, all the way up to ‘bad prop from Star Trek’. The follow-up, the Nokia 7710 wasn’t much better, being a bit buggy, still huge, and it lacked the features that other mobile phones were rapidly starting to have (cameras, 3G and so on). After that, the only Nokia devices to have touchscreens were not actually mobile phones, as the concept was shifted over to their range of internet tablets.

But now, touchscreen mobile phones are all set to make a triumphant return to the Nokia range, with their newest and bestest touchscreen mobile phone ever: the Nokia 5800.

Nokia 5800 – touchscreen mobile phones for the masses

Soon to be released, the Nokia 5800 is sure to have a very big effect on their portfolio of mobile phones. And the inspiration of it can be traced back to the release of the iPhone, so you can be absolutely sure they’ve made the Nokia 5800 as slick and as user-friendly as possible. The new S60 Touch interface in the Nokia 5800 is tremendously elegant, as well as being really rather powerful. Put simply, it’s a joy to navigate round, and so much nicer than many other mobile phones on the market. Combine with a list of top-notch features, like 3 megapixel camera, HSDPA and so on, and you get a really cool smartphone. But it’s with music that the Nokia 5800 really shines, as it’s music that this beautiful mobile phone lives for, with a music player that really is second to none. In conclusion, I can sincerely say that the Nokia 5800 is one of the most impressive mobile phones I’ve seen in a long time.

But the surprising thing is… the Nokia 5800 is a mid-range mobile phone, not a top-ender. So what will happen, when the Nokia 5800 magically morphs into the first touchscreen Nseries mobile phone.

Captain N – the future is Nseries

There’s no doubt that the Nokia 5800 is a really cool mobile phone. It’s slick, pretty and clever. but what will the new S60 Touch interface be like when it gets put into Nseries mobile phones? Are we going to see something akin to the Nokia N96 that you control by prodding the screen? Well, the answer, unsurprisingly, is yes, as confirmed by Nokia themselves. The Nokia 5800 is merely the first toe in the water, as it were, and there WILL be Nseries mobile phones released with the new touch interface. That’s when we’re going to see the big, uber-top-end, ultra-powerful mobile phones, with cameras probably in the tens of megapixels, massive amounts of storage, and frighteningly fast internet access. They won’t be the Nokia N96 with a touchscreen, though, for the simple reason that they’ll blow everything away, the Nokia N96 included!

“Way of the Future!” Nokia Nanotech “Morph” Concept Phone!!

Posted by admin | Posted in Symbian | Posted on 06-01-2010

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Mobile phones are one of the most common pieces of technology used in our daily lives. Some reports put the number of cell phones sold in 2007 worldwide at 1.1 billion. With that number of cellular phones sold in 2007 alone, the market is very hot leading to expanded research and development of new handsets. Nokia and the University of Cambridge have teamed up on a new concept phone called the Morph described as a nanotechnology concept device. The concept design was launched at the “Design …