Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Pics from Yokohama

I couldn't stay asleep last night, so I got up at 5am.  Here's the reward: a beautiful view of  Shin-Yokohama from the 19th floor of my hotel.  Dawn has just broke, and rain clouds cover the city.

This last pic is just for fun. Its not Engrish (of which, I've seen a couple awesome examples), but I had to laugh at the audacity of the little packet, telling it like it is--Japan-style. After my instant coffee with creamy powder, I took a nice quiet run while the city was waking up, cooled off with gentle sprinkles.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Driver Distraction meeting in Kyoto

Although driver distraction is a serious topic, who said it has to be devoid of any humor? I'm currently representing QNX at the ITU-T Focus Group for Driver Distraction in Kyoto. Despite my jetlag, I've been hanging in there at full attention during all the discussion and debate, even when it came to the drawn out interchange about world wide standards bodies that relate to, intersect with, provide input , or receive output from our work here. That particular conversation was brutal.

That's why I especially appreciated having started the day out with the following picture:
It gave a good chuckle to the crowd of twenty or so representatives from industry, standards bodies, academics, and government agencies present, including myself.  This came from a presentation from Dr. Motoyuki Akamatsu from Japan's National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST), the picture itself being from an earlier 1990 Driver Study.  After that little bit of levity, we went back to the remainder of Dr. Akamatsu's presentation regarding distraction measurement with periodic   occlusion techniques, a slightly more studious topic.

After two days, we've had a lot of great contributions and participation, and I think we've made some good progress.

Why I Love My PlayBook

The more that I use it, the more that I truly appreciate just how incredibly useful a device my PlayBook is.

I'm currently travelling on business.  I edited my presentation back at the hotel and copied the Powerpoint onto the PlayBook, along with various other backup PPT, PPTx, PDFs and PNGs, so I'm prepared for absolutely any question that might come up.  I can present directly from my PlayBook using a little HDMI cable stuffed in my suitcoat, and look at the speaker notes on my tablet while the audience just sees the slides.  I love knowing I can have all my backup material pre-loaded and ready to go, and with a swipe get to what I need.  Now I take all my meeting notes with the PlayBook in Word To Go, so not only do I not have to try to transcribe my notebook scribbles, I can format them and highlight important parts so they're ready for emailing to my colleagues when the meeting is over.  And maybe I'm just a bit sensitive to it, but I always hated a table full of laptop "shields".  Now I don't have a big obtrusive laptop screen hiding me from my customers.

All I need to bring is this one conveniently small tablet, and instead of lugging around my laptop bag from train to taxi, it stays at my hotel.  While I'm waiting for the next meeting to start or on public transport, I have an easy way to kill time by catching up on news, surfing the web, or playing games.  I've downloaded close to a hundred different interesting apps, which gives me lots of variety when I get bored.  (Since I've tried quite a few apps, I should really start blogging about the best PlayBook apps to download...)

With moving around so much, I am so very thankful for carrying one pound instead of twenty! (Disclaimer: I never actually weighed my massive laptop backpack, so that's just a guess.  That eff-ing bag!)

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Google buys Motorola and RIM's fortune's improve

Watching investor analysis about RIM fluctuate all over is both entertaining and frustrating.  The latest surprise being Google's buying Motorola Mobility causing RIM stock to go up.  The primary logic appears to be "if Google is buying up Motorola, patents must be worth something--RIM has way more patents, and they have more phones in the market place, so they're probably not as bad off as we thought."

Of course, nothing has changed for RIM except investor attitude, which caused the lift.  Not everyone is so uplifting, thinking that RIM will do badly because they don't have a dance partner. (What about HP? )

Good to see that there's a more positive RIM blush these days!