49, the world's most boring number
I tried very hard to come up with a theme for this week's Carnival of the Mobilists. Unfortunately, I used up all my best carnival photos and metaphors the last time I hosted, so I had to search elsewhere...
It turns out that M49 is the Messier catalog number for an elliptical galaxy in the constellaton Virgo. Unfortunately, it's one of the most boring-looking galaxies you've ever seen, just a featureless blob.
M49 is also a five-mile-long motorway in the UK. Someone who's driven it writes, "There is nothing of interest on this motorway between the start and end. Oh dear god, I'm falling asleep just looking at the photo."
As a resident of the San Francisco Bay Area, I can also report to you that the 49ers are the local American football team. Their name is a reference to the Gold Rush miners of 1849. As for how the 49ers are doing this year, let me put it this way – you'd have more fun driving the M49.
I also checked on Wikipedia, but about the most useful information it had was that 49 is the number that comes after 48 and before 50.
So to heck with the theme and let's get down to business.
Mobilists survey. First off, I have a little announcement to make. Russell (the majordomo of the Mobilists program) and I are both curious about who's reading the Carnival. So I put together a little online survey. It's totally anonymous, and consists of about a dozen multiple choice questions that ask fun things like your favorite mobile hardware company, plus some demographics. The survey should take no more than five minutes to complete. To take it, click here. A new window should open with the survey.
And now, on with the articles...
Mobile radio. Krisse at AllAboutSymbian submitted an outstanding article on the future of radio, and the potential for Internet radio + mobile phones. It's a fascinating write-up, highly recommended.
America discovers texting. MoPocket reports on how the New York democratic party is using mobile text messaging to coordinate party activists. I have a sneaking suspicion that this is one of those articles that will make folks from other countries roll their eyes and say, "oh, those primitive Americans."
Mobile advertising. Mobhappy carried an interesting article on a new report detailing the use and effectiveness of SMS pull and push marketing. The results are enormously different from country to country.
And Always On Real Time-Access discusses the success factors for mobile advertising.
How to build a mobile phone. A newcomer to the Carnival this week is Everything and the Mobile Software Universe. Thomas submitted an article that explains the whole ecosystem for building a mobile phone. It's surprisingly complex. If you've ever wondered about the difference between an ODM, OEM, and EMS, this is a good place to start.
How to improve a mobile phone. Daniel at the Mobile Enterprise Weblog wrote about his failed attempt to use the LG Fusic and Sprint's EVDO data network to check a flight schedule. His conclusion about the phone: "It's really great if you just think of it as an EV-DO modem, because it works best in that scenario and you get much better battery life on your laptop than with the Wi-Fi radio turned on."
Tarek Speaks Mobile offers an idea for a design improvement to the Nokia E61.
Mobile culture. Xellular Identitiy has a very interesting take on the philosophical importance of the recent concert in New York in which the audience's chirping cellphones were a deliberate part of the performance. If you missed this story, the concert and Xen's comment are both interesting.
HTC + Palm = ? Another newcomer to the Carnival is Alfredo at Mobile Penguin. His submission this week discusses the status of HTC and suggests that the company should buy Palm.
Commentary, reviews, and questions. Steve at AllAboutSymbian submitted an article on finding the right balance between paper planners and mobile devices. He's found that an S60 smartphone with just a few applications is the right balance for him.
Jim at Feet Up speculates about what might or might not be announced at the upcoming Symbian Smartphone conference.
WAP Review evaluated Mob5, a web service that allows users to create a mobile-optimized personal home page.
Trent at Stockmarketbeat contends that Nokia's announcements about Wibree and licensing from Trimble Navigation were less about advancing technology than getting control.
Darla Mack asks how to export feeds and podcasts from her S60 device. Drop by and post a comment if you know how to do it.
Here's a quandry. What do you do when someone at a mobile-focused website submits an article that's very interesting but not really mobile-related? In the spirit of the Internet and openness, I think you link to it anyway – although it doesn't get to compete for Post of the Week. So here is the article from Open Gardens speculating on why some community sites grow exponentially and others don't. It's an interesting viewpoint if you're interested in the Web 2.0 thing (which you should be if you want to understand what's happening to computing).
Post of the week.
No question, it's Krisse's post on the future of radio.
As you probably know, to submit articles to the Carnival, authors send e-mails to a special Gmail address. The address gets some other mail as well, and as this week's host I felt obligated to review it. I'm pleased to announce that the Mobilists' e-mail address has won $2 million in the South African lottery. However, the Mobilist EBay account and Bank of America account have both been blocked, and we'll need to log into a special website and input our password and other personal information to clear the block. Unfortunately, there wasn't any word this week about the secret Nigerian bank account that was transferred to us a couple of months ago.
Please take the survey. Thanks for visiting, and please drop by the Mobilists survey if you haven't filled it out already. I'll write up the results next week, but if you want a sneak peek click here.
Next week the Carnival will appear at MobHappy.