The spirit of London will prevail ..

There is an enchanting exhibit at Madame Taussads in London called ‘The Spirit of London’.

The spirit of London is a ride in a ‘black cab’ that takes you on a journey back in time through the history of London from Sir Francis Drake, Shakespeare, wars, famines, the blitz, the swinging sixties etc.

The point of that brief but magical ride is: The spirit of London prevails despite all that it encounters ...

Since the first time I saw it, many years ago, it has remained unchanged and I have seen it many times when I take visitors to Madame Taussads

Ironically, over the last three months, I happened to see the same ride thrice.

Once with my son, then with my sister when she was here from India and finally with my godson, when he was here from Germany.

After seeing it three times in as many months, I was getting a bit bored of it ..

But today, that ‘spirit of London’ has taken on a new meaning ..

The last week has witnessed unprecedented scenes of riots in London

The riot, as the great Dr Martin Luther King said, is the voice of the unheard ..

But the revered Dr King was referring to human rights and not the ‘right’ of the rioters to help themselves to designer shoes and HD TVs

Being born in India, and having seen real poverty, there is something strange about watching these rioters helping themselves to designer branded goods i.e. they are not helping themselves to ‘food’. (And in a curious twist, the homeless who probably do really lack food, are not rioting!)

In most parts of the world, poverty means ‘no food’.

These riots was not poverty driven

Strangely, in a span of a few weeks, we have gone from Royal weddings to riots.

But the spirit of London is strong in my view

As someone who runs a niche business in London, I am happy to call myselves a ‘capitalist’.

By that I mean, a capitalist is a ‘cathedral builder’ – someone who looks at a block of stone and adds value to it to build a cathedral.

And the strength of London, and its spirit, rests in that basic ‘creator’ ethos over the millennia

By capitalists, I mean the businesses like 150 year old House of Reeves, which was burnt down, but I am sure will rise from its ashes stronger with the support of the community and the small Turklish shopkeepers who defended their businesses

While even the likes of Robert Mugabe has taken it upon themselves to remind us that there are ‘no fires in Zimbabwe’ (but we should remind him that there are no free elections in Zimbabwe either!), this is a time to remind us of the spirit of London.

Finally, I cannot ignore the role of ‘mobile’ and ‘ad hoc networks’ in this riot.

What to make of the malevolent ‘flashmob’ driven by Blackberry messengers?

Mobile devices and technology are tools but they lead to fundamental changes in society (and I have been saying this in my books and blogs for a while – Would you hire a woman who maintained a f**k book in college and The girl named Facebook: The Russians (and the Egyptians and the Libyans and the Tunisians and ..) love their children too ).

Specifically, Internet related technologies are breaking down hierarchies and creating fluid, often ad-hoc networks, for better or for worse.

While our prime minister calls for a ‘fightback’ (and people in the UK will support any such efforts), the reality is: We are living in a new era where politicians are demonstrably less empowered.

What is the solution?

Maybe a decentralization of power and a reduction of hierarchy (aka – a more network oriented governance) – and there is already talk of that idea –  In this crisis, our cities need local leaders with real power and even ultimately to a more Swiss canton like system of government ?

This debate will continue but I believe that the spirit of London will prevail and will see us to a great Olympics in a year’s time

Image – Madame Taussads

A row of electric buttons – Google is not making us stupid it is making us like Henry Ford ..





My latest book is about the mind, meditation and its implications for human evolution..  Hence the findings that Google Is Ruining Your Memory to be interesting ..

A recent study suggests that even if you may have a little deficit in your memory with age, the internet is speeding up the process. Not because it’s damaging your memory, but because you’re simply using the internet as a crutch. The information is at your fingertips, so you don’t have to remember.

In my view, this ‘study’ follows a long line of similar work that states the obvious.

Others who have engaged in this scaremongering include the likes of  Nicolas Carr ( who seems to have made a career out of Internet bashing and Google bashing ..)  and the  neuroscientist Susan Greenfield who claims that social sites such as Facebook are causing alarming changes in the brains of little children.

But I believe that instead of making us less intelligent, the Internet is making us more intelligent by being selective .. and the model for that type of intelligence is Henry Ford

The findings of this study made me remember a section in Napolean Hill’s classic – Think and Grow Rich in which he describes how lawyers for a Chicago newspaper attempted to prove that Henry Ford was ‘ignorant’.

The attorneys asked Mr. Ford a great variety of questions, all of them intended to prove, by his own evidence, that, while, he might possess considerable specialized knowledge pertaining to the manufacture of automobiles, he was, in the main, ignorant.

Mr. Ford was plied with such questions as the following: “Who was Benedict Arnold?” and “How many soldiers did the British send over to America to put down the Rebellion of 1776?” In answer to the last question, Mr. Ford replied, “I do not know the exact number of the soldiers the British sent over, but I have heard that it was a considerably larger number than ever went back.”

Finally, Mr. Ford became tired of this line of questioning, and in reply to a particularly offensive question, he leaned over, pointed his finger at the lawyer who had asked the question, and said, “If I should really want to answer the foolish question you have just asked, or any of the other questions you have been asking me, let me remind you that I have a row of electric push-buttons on my desk, and by pushing the right button, I can summon to my aid men who can answer any question I desire to ask concerning the business to which I am devoting most of my efforts.

… Any man is educated who knows where to get knowledge when he needs it, and how to organize that knowledge into definite plans of action.

There is a lot to be said for this response from Henry Ford and it indicates an optimistic evolution path for humanity!

That row of buttons is now Google and you don’t to be as rich as Henry Ford to have access to them at your fingertips. Thanks to the Web and the Internet, Information is now democratised ..

Mobile Web influencer interview – C Enrique Ortiz

Following Dan Appelquist’s interview, I am very pleased to present the next Mobile Web Influencer interview – Good friend and industry guru C Enrique Ortiz

Even in this brief interview, I really like the way in which Enrique defines webapps in terms of design philosophy!

Enjoy!

1) What do you think is the biggest reason you are optimistic about the mobile web?
The adoption of the WebKit browser-technology (http://www.webkit.org/) across mobile device vendors is one of the main reasons I am optimistic about the mobile web. Having the major vendors focus on a single, advanced, browser baseline implementation translates to consistency across such devices, which directly benefits developers who can now focus on creating great design, apps, and content vs. dealing with inter-browser inconsistencies. The WebKit has proven to be a killer platform, which I hope is going to continue to be adopted by others, if not by all, major device and browser vendors. Again, enable developers to be able to create/write great webapps and maximize their ROI and the result is more quality mobile webapps.

2) Which web technologies are you optimistic about?
The WebKit, HTML5, HTML Canvas element, SVG, the power of JavaScript and CSS3 transforms and media queries – all are going to play a key role in the advancement of awesome mobile webapps.

Another area is what many of us have touted for years — the importance of secure access to device capabilities (using a consistent way/set of APIs) from within the browser or “web runtime” as a very important capability that is going to enhance the mobile experience. In the meantime, developers have to continue rely on Hybrid applications (native applications that wrap WebViews) as a way to offer the best of both worlds.

Last but not least, another area I am optimistic about are the new mobile web developer tool-kits such a jQuery Mobile, Sencha, PhoneGap and others, that are playing a very important role by helping developers in the creation of great mobile webapps across browsers.

3) Who, in your view, is a thought leader for the mobile web?
There are a number of great leaders in this space. Some are “old-timers” from the days of WAP (circa 2000), and who have seen the whole evolution to today. These are folks who lead by example and are awesome; James Pearce, Jason Grigsby, Brian Fling, Bryan Rieger and Mike Rowehl to mention a few. Then there are Evangelists such as Dan Appelquist and Ajit Jaokar, also to mention a few. More recently, folks like Luke Wroblewski, and traditional Web designers (what I call the new generation) are now embracing mobile webapps and bringing a lot of value by leading and educating others.

4) What does the mobile web lack and how is that gap being bridged?
The two major technology gaps today are lack of consistent browser technology across devices (from iPhone to Microsoft) and complete and consistent access to device capabilities.

5) Which areas/domains will the mobile web extend to in the near future?
I see the inclusion (and standardization) of the Augmented Reality (AR) technology within the standard browser, as a new domain for mobile web. This is enabling the browsers to support this new kind of (very exciting) application interactions natively. This means standardizing how to define and publish the AR resources, discover and consume such AR resources, render such AR resources, and how the user interacts with such AR entities, all browser-based, all cross-browsers. The AR space then becomes mainly a content-space vs. technology-driven as today.

6) What is the biggest gap/concern for developers (w.r.t. mobile web)
In my opinion, the biggest gap today for mobile web developers is around design philosophies for mobile webapps.  For example: many traditional web designers and developers are now embracing mobile, but are focusing on specific platforms (typically iPhone and Android) and bringing traditional web into mobile. But mobile is special, not only at the platform-level, but on the user experience, and it requires special attention.

7) Can you expand on this mobile webapp design gap?
While it has greatly improved over the recent years, there are many issues to address such as how to handle the different handset characteristics, screen sizes, orientation, browser support, and how to create a mobile webapp that works (adapts) properly. Many developers today are focusing their apps on the iPhone and Android, but as many of the thought leaders I mentioned above will say, that is not proper; a proper design will address and should work across most if not all mobile devices. For this, mobile web designers and developers must familiarise themselves with design concepts that include device-detection, device adaptation either server-based or client-based, and graceful degradation (or progressive enhancement). The goal is for the less-capable devices to degrade nicely into more basic behaviors and features while at the same time, allowing for the most advanced devices and browsers to provide the maximum experience possible by maximizing the capabilities of HTML, JavaScript and CSS.

Note my use of the word mobile webapp in contrast to mobile websites. That is another important design philosophy, as a mobile webapp is not the same as a mobile website, yet for many, both developers and customers, mobile web still translates to mobile websites. Due to the characteristics of the mobile handset, specific application-flows (vs. websites) are more appropriate for the mobile user experience; such specific flows are what I refer to as mobile webapps. These are well-defined, very focus and mobile-specific/enhanced application flows. These mobile webapps are standalone, or part of a larger set, and can be pushed or discovered independently.

About C. Enrique Ortiz

Digital agenda survey

Introduction:

The objective of the blogger outreach has been to complement the Digital Agenda Assembly by spreading awareness of the Digital agenda through an bloggers and influencers  and soliciting feedback.

To achieve this, I asked open ended questions to active bloggers who are influential in the digital world, but have no clear knowledge of the EU’s Digital Agenda.  We produced for them a summary of the key pillars of the Digital Agenda, and asked what comes to mind?

Results

In a short time span, we had about 15 detailed responses.I was pleasantly surprised with the depth of the responses as we can see below. The ages ranged from 27(youngest) to sixties.

The below is a synthesis of responses, organised around the DA themes, and our selection of “the top 5 questions” received.

Top five questions: (sources below in specific DA sections)

1)    Is there a formal process to include hackers into the conversation? That would add to overall cybersecurity.

2)    Any views on Bitcoin? (the open source, virtual P2P currency).

3)    Is there a proposal to introduce the equivalent of NSTIC (US national identity process)?

4)    Is cable not the last ‘walled garden’? Cable uses public property – is there no obligation to ‘open up’ the cable ecosystem?

5)    Rather than mandate towards a high speed Internet, shouldn’t each country in the EU be mandated to boost to acceptable coverage Internet coverage in their ‘rural areas’? Each country has thousands of mini areas where internet connectivity is pathetic at best

Digital Single Market

-       Ignoring digital – for one Europe, why is Postage much more expensive across borders?! Is that on the agenda?  Jonathan Marks

-       DRM initiatives are often designed to benefit the publishers. How do we ensure that the interests of the artists are protected? (and these may be different from the publishers) Dr Nick Allott

-       Is cable not the last ‘walled garden’? Cable uses public property – is there no obligation to ‘open up’ the cable ecosystem? (Ajit Jaokar – OpenGardens)
Interoperability and Standards

-       Standards are too slow – why not embrace open source as a faster way to encourage “collaboration”?  Dr Nick Allott

Trust and Security

-       Is there a formal process to include hackers into the conversation? That would add to overall cybersecurity. Muriel Devillers

-       Any views on Bitcoin? (the open source, virtual P2P currency) Muriel Devillers

-       Is there a proposal to introduce the equivalent of NSTIC (US national Identity process) (Ajit Jaokar - OpenGardens)

-       Germany has its national implementation of identiy and perhaps payment in the future based on data more or less securely on the national id-card. What about other countries? Would it be compatible?

Martin Sauter – wireless moves

-       Every country needs a cyber task force, if it hasn’t already got one. Jonathan Marks
Very Fast Internet

-       Rather than mandate towards a high speed Internet, shouldn’t each country in the EU be mandated to boost to acceptable coverage Internet coverage in their ‘rural areas’? Each country has thousands of mini areas where internet connectivity is pathetic at best .) Christine Maxwell Director, New business Development Morodo Ltd

Research and innovation

-       The process of managing FP funding is too long and cumbersome. What is being done to reduce the bureaucracy to not put off the real innovators!Dr Nick Allott

-       Is there an emphasis on e-health? Europe could establish competitive advantage here (US medical system is broken)  Werner Souza (India)
Enhancing e-skills

-       Develop playful e-skills to improve cross-border understanding. If the US can set up schemes that re-captcha to improve the scanning of books, why can’t we set up playful schemes to encourage the public to improve machine-translation? About 200 million CAPTCHAs are solved by humans around the world every day. Imagine what that could do for cross-border understanding. Europe has the broadest range of language knowledge on the planet. Jonathan Marks


ICT for Social Challenges

-       EU should champion Net Neutrality. I want the freedom to choose providers that do not filter based on the applications I am using. The Netherlands is to be the first European country to guarantee open and free access to the internet. Economic Affairs Minister Maxime Verhagen has embraced an opposition bill about ‘net neutrality’. In future, telecom operators will no longer be allowed to charge extra for internet services.Jonathan Marks

-       Access to Information is a human right. The attempts by some governments to set up “Three strikes and you’re out” policies are not only unenforceable, but in all cases where you isolate communities and individuals, they will rebel and become open to influence from extremists. Solitary confinement is the one of the worst forms of punishment. Doing this to a community is a recipe for disaster. Jonathan Marks

-       Improve Access to Europe’s Cultural Heritage There are EU organisations like Europeana which are trying to provide public access to heritage. They need help in understanding the business models and also much closer cooperation with public broadcast archives and production houses. Such organizations need to understand that putting a library on line doesn’t work, unless they provide context to their collections.  Jonathan Marks

How would the Internet of things look like if it were driven by NFC (vs RFID)

As NFC catches momentum in Europe and North America, I have been thinking of yet another gedankenexperiment :

How the industry would shape up if the Internet of things were driven by NFC?

To understand this, we have to break down the concepts.

Internet of things

Firstly, Internet of things is a concept driven largely by academia so far.

There are several partially overlapping definitions: (source Wikipedia)

Casagras:[5]: “A global network infrastructure, linking physical and virtual objects through the exploitation of data capture and communication capabilities. This infrastructure includes existing and evolving Internet and network developments. It will offer specific object-identification, sensor and connection capability as the basis for the development of independent cooperative services and applications. These will be characterised by a high degree of autonomous data capture, event transfer, network connectivity and interoperability

SAP:[6]: “A world where physical objects are seamlessly integrated into the information network, and where the physical objects can become active participants in business processes. Services are available to interact with these ‘smart objects’ over the Internet, query and change their state and any information associated with them, taking into account security and privacy issues.

ETP EPOSS:[7]:”The network formed by things/objects having identities, virtual personalities operating in smart spaces using intelligent interfaces to connect and communicate with the users, social and environmental contexts

CERP-IoT: [8]:”Internet of Things (IoT) is an integrated part of Future Internet and could be defined as a dynamic global network infrastructure with self configuring capabilities based on standard and interoperable communication protocols where physical and virtual ‘things’ have identities, physical attributes, and virtual personalities and use intelligent interfaces, and are seamlessly integrated into the information network. In the IoT, ‘things’ are expected to become active participants in business, information and social processes where they are enabled to interact and communicate among themselves and with the environment by exchanging data and information ‘sensed’ about the environment, while reacting autonomously to the ‘real/physical world’ events and influencing it by running processes that trigger actions and create services with or without direct human intervention. Interfaces in the form of services facilitate interactions with these ‘smart things’ over the Internet, query and change their state and any information associated with them, taking into account security and privacy issues.

Other:[9]:”The future Internet of Things links uniquely identifiable things to their virtual representations in the Internet containing or linking to additional information on their identity, status, location or any other business, social or privately relevant information at a financial or non-financial pay-off that exceeds the efforts of information provisioning and offers information access to non-predefined participants. The provided accurate and appropriate information may be accessed in the right quantity and condition, at the right time and place at the right price. The Internet of Things is not synonymous with ubiquitous / pervasive computing, the Internet Protocol (IP), communication technology, embedded devices, its applications, the Internet of People or the Intranet / Extranet of Things, yet it combines aspects and technologies of all of these approaches.

If we identify the common elements for IOT then:

1)      Objects should be uniquely identified

2)      They should be network enabled and hence objects can be queried and activated remotely

3)      Services enabled through such ‘smart objects’ will be co-operative

In addition, some other notes for IOT

1)     The original idea of the Auto-ID Center is based RFID-tags and unique identification through the Electronic Product Code. So, IOT is tied to the idea of RFID/Barcodes

2)     IOT is different from ambient intelligence / pervasive computing / ubiquitous computing which are ideas designed  such that machines modify their behaviour to fit into the environment instead of humans forcing humans to change their behaviour.

3)     There is an alternate view of IOT which is fulfilled by making objects web addressable and that means the object has an agent in the cloud and objects can communicate in the cloud without directly communicating with each other. Ipv6 has a role to play in this space ie if objects become internet addressable

4)     IOT systems will be event driven, complex (ie not deterministic)

5)     But the most important consideration for IOT is the scale: IOT aims for trillions of objects which will lead to billions of parallel and simultaneous interactions requiring massively parallel systems

The uptake of NFC

The original concept for IOT came from the RFID ecosystem. NFC could be seen to be a subset of IOT. NFC is compatible with RFID and the main difference is the range. Also, RFID started with supply chain, asset tracking etc and NFC with transportation. So far, RFID has not become ubiquitous as a technology. But NFC is on the verge of a major uptake in Europe and North America. NFC has applications in access control, access control, consumer electronics, healthcare, information exchange, coupons, payments and transportation.  Thus at an application level, NFC and RFID are comparable.

The uptake of NFC in EU and North America is driven by various factors:

a)     Three different constituencies are driving NFC  - credit cards(visa), telecoms(SIM), Web(Google wallet, paypal)

b)    NFC will show an initial uptake through interactions(informational type requests) and a portion of these could be transactions

Analysis for IOT

As we have seen before, the various definitions of IOT have some common elements. But let us imagine what IOT would look like if NFC were the driving technology

The key requirement to fullfill the true potential of IOT is the scale. Now, if NFC takes off then most of the requirements for IOT could be fulfilled except the scale of interactions. This means, the more emergent/ complex services for IOT may not emerge (at least initially) with NFC but still NFC will be useful.

In addition:

a)     If mobile devices will take up NFC, then we are likely to see more A2P (application to person – ex payment) rather than person to person services. This is good because it provides an initial use case and then as more devices and objects become NFC enabled, more complex use cases will emerge leading to network effects

b)    Hence, the larger scale vision of IOT will not be realised unless you achieve  large scale standardization and interoperability. In the West, I do not see governments attempting this level of standardization. Which makes NFC very significant because much of the promise of IOT will be achieved through NFC but without the scale

c)     Japan, South Korea,Singapore and ofcourse China could achieve standardization in their respective countries. That could achieve scale / IOT vision within their local geographies

d)      China is different since it is a large scale market in addition to a creator of technology. So, internally within China, a lot could be achieved which will add value especially considering the emphasis in China based on the Chinese premier Wen Jiabo’s vision that: Internet + Internet of Things = Wisdom of the Earth.

e)      Can China influence standards? This is a more complex and perhaps a non technological question. But the observation I make it – the rate of uptake of NFC will mean that in the west a parallel ecosystem will develop based on NFC which will mean that influencing standards on a global basis may not be so relevant as a competitive advantage.

Conclusion :

I suspect that NFC will achieve much of the goals for IOT but not on scale but we may see scale in specific geographies where governments can influence standards and achieve interoperability. We saw the same with Korea and Japan for mobile ecosystems. Both achieved high mobile growth within their respective geographies but could not translate it into global uptake.

I also find the alternative view of IOT(that of making objects web addressable) interesting especially when tied to the Cloud

In any case, I love studying ecosystems and IOT will be very interesting ..

Mobile Web Influencer interviews – Interview with Dan Appelquist @torgo

This interview was a part of the The Mobile Web influencers list but I am posting the interviews separately  as well

Interview with Dan Appelquist @torgo

1) What do you think is the biggest reason you are optimistic about the mobile web?

I’m optimistic about the mobile Web because it’s going away. What I mean by that is The mobile Web is now ubiquitous and it’s mass market. If you take into account emerging form factors such as tablets, then it’s fast becoming true that the Mobile Web is just becoming the Web.

2) Which web technologies are you optimistic about?

I am bullish on device APIs these days. I’m very excited about the w3c geolocation API that we had a hand in. Geolocation in the browser was first released on the mobile and (predictably) has had a huge impact on mobile Web applications, particularly social applications. The geolocation API success story now needs to be replicated for other APIs – accelerometer, camera, calendar, etc… This work is going on in W3C right now and hopefully will bear fruit soon. It’s all about making the Web a richer platform for developing applications and creating great user experiences.

3) Who, in your view, is a thought leader for the mobile web?

I think the Mobile Web has a number of great thought leaders and I’ve suggested many of them for your list. The nature of the Web is that it is multi-polar and so you cannot really point to one person who has led the way in the Mobile Web space. I do think @jamespearce deserves some special respect for being a participant in and follower of standards (particularly the W3C work on Mobile Web Best Practices) and putting that into action through real-world coding projects that have made a huge impact on the experience of the mobile Web (such as the WordPress Mobile Pack).

4) What does the mobile web lack and how is that gap being bridged?

Tools. Tools. Tools. We need more high-quality tools for Web developers and designers that fit the mobile platform and allow developers to use progressive enhancement and “mobile first” design techniques more easily.

5) Which areas/domains will the mobile web extend to in the near future?

Device APIs is the big growth area right now. We’ve already seen how the (w3C) geolocation API has transformed the use of location on the Web with social applications like Twitter and Facebook being the most aggressive adopters. Emerging device APIs will allow access to the camera, device data (such as address book contacts but also things like roaming status), and other sensors such as accelerometer. This will open up new opportunities for Web developers to create more immersive experiences that leverage the rich capabilities of mobile devices.

6) What is the biggest gap/concern for developers(wrt mobile web)

Discoverability and monetization of mobile Web applications is a big concern. Right now developers rightly perceive that putting their applications into app stores, promoting them and selling them through these app stores is their best route to customers and revenue. Advertising platforms for mobile Web apps are not mature enough yet. The mobile Web does not have the equivalent of an App store. These issues need to be addressed if the mobile Web platform is going to thrive. Part of the problem is inconsistency in how these Web apps are presented to consumers. Web developers need to be consistent about applying the “thematic consistency” principle that we developed in the Mobile Web Best Practices group. This principle is as relevant today as it was five years ago when we developed it. Web sites should adapt the presentation of content appropriately to the device.

You can find those mobile Web best practices at
http://www.w3.org/TR/mobile-bp/ along with the more recently developed
“Mobile Web Application Best Practices” (useful for targeting more advanced
mobile browsers): http://www.w3.org/2010/09/MWABP/

The Mobile Web influencers list

Earlier this year, I asked if 2011 was the year of the Mobile Web and following that I announced a few weeks ago that I was compiling a curated list of Mobile Web influencers (The Mobile Web influencers list – the background). This list took a while to create, but finally here it is! I would like to thank Daniel Appelquist @torgo for his help with the list

Some notes

1) This is a curated list. I have tried to keep it purist in terms of a Web agenda. See my views about the Mobile Web from the links above.

2) The balance between companies and individuals was not easy. Where possible, I have tried to include individuals rather than companies.

3) Similarly, the inclusion of consortia and bodies was a separate category.

4)  Finally, I added some people who I personally thought were influencers to my thinking plus especially for the future (for instance @webofthings)

We will also have interviews – and the first one from Dan below

Many thanks for all the help and I hope you find it useful

You can follow the list at - twitter list for Mobile Web Influencers and on peerindex list of mobile web influencers

The list below and following it is the interview from Dan

Mobile Web Influencers – People

@ppk Peter-Paul Koch

@ppk Amsterdam, Netherlands
Mobile platform strategist | consultant | writer | conference
organiser and speaker | blogger | trainer | browser compatibility
expert

http://quirksmode.org

@firt Maximiliano Firtman

@firt Argentina
Mobile & web developer. Author, Speaker, Trainer. Forum Nokia Champion and Adobe Community Champion. Author of Programming the Mobile Web, from O’Reilly. HSS.

http://www.mobilexweb.com

@twhume Tom Hume

@twhume Brighton, UK
Brighton Mobile Scrum UX Agile Aikido

http://tomhume.org/

@torgo Daniel Appelquist

@torgo London
American expat; Londoner; Vodafone R&Der; @W3C Web/Social standards, @OneSocialWeb; @MoMoLondon, @overtheair, http://mobile2event.com founder; speaker; writer.

http://www.torgo.com/

@mtrends Rudy De Waele

@mtrends iPhone: 41.401575,2.166520
Entrepreneur, Mobile Strategist, Business Angel, Speaker. Co-founder dotopen.com, AppCircus, Mobile Premier Awards, Mobile 2.0 Europe, MobileMonday Spain

http://m-trends.org

@kiwanja Ken Banks

@kiwanja Currently Aspen, Colorado
Mobile technologist. Anthropologist. Conservationist. Tech Awards Laureate 2009. National Geographic 2010 Emerging Explorer. Founder: kiwanja.net @FrontlineSMS

http://kiwanja.net

@russellbuckley Russell Buckley


@russellbuckley Munich and London
A mobsesssive, a blogger, a writer and seeker of the New New

http://www.mobhappy.com

@eortiz Enrique Ortiz


@eortiz Austin, Texas
Mobilist — for fun and profit: strategy, software, author.

http://cenriqueortiz.com/weblog

@jamespearce James Pearce

@jamespearce US, Belize, India, Ireland, UK
DevRel @ Sencha. And living the mobile dream.

http://tripleodeon.com

@bryanrieger Bryan Rieger

@bryanrieger Edinburgh, UK
design, devices and distractions… EDI, LHR, BKK

@lukew Luke Wroblewski

@lukew Silicon Valley, CA + the Web
Digital product design & strategy guy in Silicon Valley, CA. Author of Web Form Design & Site Seeing. Currently CPO and co-founder of Bagcheck.

http://www.lukew.com

@grigs Jason Grigsby

@grigs Portland, Oregon
Portland, Oregon
Mobile Web Strategist, Co-Founder of CloudFour.com and MobilePortland.com, Co-Author of Head First Mobile Web available Winter 2011

http://cloudfour.com/blog

@hollobit Jonathan Jeon

@hollobit Daejeon, Korea
관심사 – Mobile 2.0, mobileOK, Mobile Services, Augmented Reality, Social Web & Future Web, Web Application & Web App Store, Web Standardization, W3C/OMA/ITU-T

http://www.google.co.kr/profiles/hollobit

@jorabin Jo Rabin


London
@jorabin London

@yeswap Dennis Bournique,

@yeswap San Francisco
Mobile web blogger

http://wapreview.com

@edent Terence Eden

@edent London
I make the interwebs go mobiletastic. I’m a long haired geek: Dr Who, Star Wars, Ubuntu. Developer for @Dabr @wpmp. All tweets ©

http://shkspr.mobi/blog/

@jeffsonstein Jeff Sonstein

@jeffsonstein Rochester, NY 14620
IT prof @ RIT, mobile tech junkie, old hacker.

http://www.it.rit.edu/~jxs/

@robinberjon Robin Berjon

@robinberjon Paris
Standards, Politics 2.0, at times Vociferous Hired Gun

http://berjon.com/

@stephanierieger Stephanie Rieger

@stephanierieger Edinburgh/London/Bangkok
Mobile web, UX, technical writing, design, books. Mostly based in Edinburgh.

http://yiibu.com

@ricmacnz Richard MacManus


@ricmacnz Petone, New Zealand
Founder & Co-Editor of ReadWriteWeb.com. This is Richard’s personal Twitter a/c. You can also follow the professional Richard (and his team mates) @RWW.

http://ricm.ac

@sarahintampa Sarah Perez

@sarahintampa Tampa, FL
Writer for tech news site ReadWriteWeb.com, syndicated by NYT, obsessed with mobile. Google Voice: (813) 377-2545 / Email: sarah AT readwriteweb DOT com

http://www.readwriteweb.com/archives/author/sarah-perez.php

@brianleroux xnoɹǝʃ uɐıɹq

@brianleroux iPhone: 49.276150,-123.126800
I’m a free/open source software developer at Nitobi working on top secret things and not so secret things like PhoneGap, XUI, Lawnchair and WTFJS.

http://westcoastlogic.com

@fling Brian Fling

@fling Seattle, USA
creative director at @pinchzoom, author of @oreillymedia Mobile Design & Development, father of @pennyfling

http://pinchzoom.com

@miker Mike Rowehl

@miker San Francisco, CA
16th level Hacker

http://thisismobility.com

@AjitJaokar Ajit Jaokar

@AjitJaokar

http://www.opengardensblog.futuretext.com

@beep Ethan Marcotte

@beep Cambridge, MA
Designer, developer. Started that whole “responsive web design” thing. “Eight? Who taught you math?”

http://ethanmarcotte.com/

@adactio Jeremy Keith

@adactio Brighton, East Sussex, England
An Irish web developer living and working in Brighton, England.

http://adactio.com/

@scottjehl Scott Jehl

@scottjehl Boston
Web designer. Filament Grouper. jQuery Mobiler. Co-author of Designing with Progressive Enhancement. Reluctantly tweeting a bit more lately…

http://scottjehl.com

@scottjenson Scott Jenson

@scottjenson Palo Alto, CA
Creative Director, frog design (ex-Apple/Symbian/Google)

http://designmind.frogdesign.com/blog/author/beyond-mobile/

dalmaer Dion Almaer

Dion Almaer
Dion Almaer technologist and human dev aggregator
robinjewsbury Robin Jewsbury
Robin Jewsbury
robinjewsbury Robin Jewsbury Make your own mobile apps from your own content at eyemags.com, no tech knowledge required-works on most phones. Robin is the founder of eyemags.com.
London Web Standards
webstandards London Web Standards Monthly London meetup for people who are passionate about the web. Check our site for videos from our events, and details of the next meetup.
brucel bruce lawson
bruce lawson

brucel bruce lawson Opera web evangelist (but tweets are personal, not Opera); co-author of Introducing HTML5; web standards lovegod. Guinness-drinking, kickboxing poetry freak. http://www.brucelawson.co.uk

@dontcallmedom Dom Hazael-Massieux

Dom Hazael-Massieux

W3C Staff, French, working on new gen of Web technologies and doing Software development; co-author of “Relever le défi du Web mobile” http://lewebmobile.fr

@nallott Nick Allott
Nick Allott
Technologist and Strategist. Things I am/have been involved in: webinos, W3C, WAC, BONDI, fastmobile. Specialisms: Venture capital, open source, IPR standards

Companies and Organizations

@EricssonLabs Tor Bjorn Minde


@EricssonLabs Sweden
Open Innovation, APIs, new tech, mobile apps, content, communication, maps, 3D, location, NFC, sensors, web tech, html5, graphics, machine learning, security

http://labs.ericsson.com

@w3c W3C Team


@w3c MIT | ERCIM | Keio University
The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) develops interoperable technologies (specifications, guidelines, software, and tools) to lead the Web to its full potential.

http://www.w3.org/

@webinosproject Webinos project

Webinos @webinosproject
An EU-funded project aiming to deliver an open source platform for web applications across mobile, PC, home media (TV/set-top boxes) and in-car devices.

http://webinos.org

@webfoundation

Web Foundation
@webfoundation Boston, MA, USA
Advance the Web to empower people. Learn more and find out how to get involved!

http://webfoundation.org/

Web of things

Web of things blog

@webofthings

Interview with Dan Appelquist @torgo

1) What do you think is the biggest reason you are optimistic about the mobile web?

I’m optimistic about the mobile Web because it’s going away. What I mean by that is The mobile Web is now ubiquitous and it’s mass market. If you take into account emerging form factors such as tablets, then it’s fast becoming true that the Mobile Web is just becoming the Web.

2) Which web technologies are you optimistic about?

I am bullish on device APIs these days. I’m very excited about the w3c geolocation API that we had a hand in. Geolocation in the browser was first released on the mobile and (predictably) has had a huge impact on mobile Web applications, particularly social applications. The geolocation API success story now needs to be replicated for other APIs – accelerometer, camera, calendar, etc… This work is going on in W3C right now and hopefully will bear fruit soon. It’s all about making the Web a richer platform for developing applications and creating great user experiences.

3) Who, in your view, is a thought leader for the mobile web?

I think the Mobile Web has a number of great thought leaders and I’ve suggested many of them for your list. The nature of the Web is that it is multi-polar and so you cannot really point to one person who has led the way in the Mobile Web space. I do think @jamespearce deserves some special respect for being a participant in and follower of standards (particularly the W3C work on Mobile Web Best Practices) and putting that into action through real-world coding projects that have made a huge impact on the experience of the mobile Web (such as the WordPress Mobile Pack).

4) What does the mobile web lack and how is that gap being bridged?

Tools. Tools. Tools. We need more high-quality tools for Web developers and designers that fit the mobile platform and allow developers to use progressive enhancement and “mobile first” design techniques more easily.

5) Which areas/domains will the mobile web extend to in the near future?

Device APIs is the big growth area right now. We’ve already seen how the (w3C) geolocation API has transformed the use of location on the Web with social applications like Twitter and Facebook being the most aggressive adopters. Emerging device APIs will allow access to the camera, device data (such as address book contacts but also things like roaming status), and other sensors such as accelerometer. This will open up new opportunities for Web developers to create more immersive experiences that leverage the rich capabilities of mobile devices.

6) What is the biggest gap/concern for developers(wrt mobile web)

Discoverability and monetization of mobile Web applications is a big concern. Right now developers rightly perceive that putting their applications into app stores, promoting them and selling them through these app stores is their best route to customers and revenue. Advertising platforms for mobile Web apps are not mature enough yet. The mobile Web does not have the equivalent of an App store. These issues need to be addressed if the mobile Web platform is going to thrive. Part of the problem is inconsistency in how these Web apps are presented to consumers. Web developers need to be consistent about applying the “thematic consistency” principle that we developed in the Mobile Web Best Practices group. This principle is as relevant today as it was five years ago when we developed it. Web sites should adapt the presentation of content appropriately to the device.

You can find those mobile Web best practices at
http://www.w3.org/TR/mobile-bp/ along with the more recently developed
“Mobile Web Application Best Practices” (useful for targeting more advanced
mobile browsers): http://www.w3.org/2010/09/MWABP/

Digital agenda survey

First Digital Agenda Assembly, Brussels, 16-17 June 2011

Hello all

Here is a brief survey about the Digital Agenda. If you complete it and send it to me, I can send you a powerpoint which is a summary of the EU web sites which will be concise way to get the big picture about these issues

email me at ajit.jaokar at futuretext.com (should take about 5 mins)

The Digital Agenda is Europe’s strategy for a flourishing digital economy by 2020. It outlines policies and actions to maximise the benefit of the Digital Revolution for all. To achieve these goals, the Commission will work closely with national governments, concerned organisations and companies.  An annual Digital Assembly will bring stakeholders together to assess progress and emerging challenges.

The digital agenda is based on Pillars(themes), actions(for each theme) and a scorecard. Hence, it aims to be very focused and measurable.

Question: based on the brief description below, what do you think are the key issues that come to mind in each section (the idea is not to look back at the commission documents – but to see what is valued by thought leaders)

Once I get the feedback, I will follow this up with a powerpoint based on a summary of the commission’s analysis which would be useful to know

Many thanks

kind rgds

Ajit

Digital Single Market

Too many barriers still block the free flow of online services and entertainment across national borders. The Digital Agenda will update EU Single Market rules for the digital era. The aims are to boost the music download business, establish a single area for online payments, and further protect EU consumers in cyberspace.

Issues which come to mind:

Interoperability and Standards

The internet is a great example of interoperability – numerous devices and applications working together anywhere in the world. Europe must ensure that new IT devices, applications, data repositories and services interact seamlessly anywhere – just like the internet.

The Digital Agenda identifies improved standard-setting procedures and increased interoperability as the keys to success

Issues which come to mind:

Trust and Security

Only 12% of European web users feel completely safe making online transactions. Threats such as malicious software and online fraud unsettle consumers and dog efforts to promote the online economy. The Digital Agenda proposes a number of practical solutions, including a coordinated European response to cyber-attacks and reinforced rules on personal data protection

Issues which come to mind:


Very Fast Internet

New services such as high definition television or videoconferencing need much faster internet access than generally available in Europe. To match world leaders like South Korea and Japan, Europe needs download rates of 30 Mbps for all of its citizens and at least 50% of European households subscribing to internet connections above 100 Mbps by 2020. The Digital Agenda aims to turn this ambition into reality by stimulating investments and proposing a comprehensive radio spectrum plan.

keywords/issues which come to mind:

Research and innovation

To attract Europe’s best minds to research, world class infrastructure and adequate funding are crucial. The best research ideas must be turned into marketable products and services. Currently, EU investment in ICT research is still less than half US levels. The Digital Agenda seeks to maintain Europe’s competitive edge through increased coordination and elimination of Europe’s fragmented efforts.

Issues which come to mind:

Enhancing e-skills

Over 50% of Europeans use the internet daily – but 30% have never used it at all! Moreover, disabled persons face particular difficulties in benefiting fully from new electronic content and services. As ever more daily tasks are carried out online, all our people need enhanced digital skills to participate fully in society. The Digital Agenda tackles this unacceptable digital divide.

Issues which come to mind:

ICT for Social Challenges

Digital technologies have enormous potential to benefit our everyday lives and tackle social challenges. The Digital Agenda focuses on ICTs capability to reduce energy consumption, support ageing citizens’ lives, revolutionises health services and deliver better public services.

ICTs can also drive forward the digitisation of Europe’s cultural heritage providing online access for all.

Issues  which come to mind:

Thanks for all the comments. Please keep them coming.

See the attached for the summary of the issues from the Digital Agenda

http://www.opengardensblog.futuretext.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/06/digital-agenda-issues-and-actions.pdf

Is the future of ‘mobile’ voice – fixed??

Is the future of ‘mobile’ voice – fixed??

Let us see the underlying trend behind three announcements/posts

1) Yesterday, the Pew Research Finds Popularity of Internet Phone Calls Has Jumped Dramatically

Specifically, The survey found that almost a quarter of American adult Internet users (24%) have placed a phone call online. That’s 19% of all American adults.
+
But even if the mention of Skype triggered a more affirmative response than in previous surveys, there’s little doubt that placing phone calls over the Internet has become more popular. Pew points to several reasons why this is the case: “It is free or cheaper than other types of phone calling; it is enabled on many handheld devices like smartphones and tablet computers; more and more meetings and classroom activities exploit online phone connections along with video capabilities; and more families and friends are building online calls into their communications streams.”

2) Over time, Operators have been abandoning fixed rate prices and telling customers to go to fixed line networks to download video etc. The fixed line networks, especially Sky + Cloud, and Virgin have been making WiFi investments. Apple supports WiFi. So, fixed networks now have the attention and the capacity (through Wifi)

3) Combine this with the idea from a previous post Have mobile operators lost their voice which pertains to the lack of IP level interconnect

Then we could argue that .. the future of mobile voice could be fixed especially if fixed line players use the wifi networks to provide VOIP services and mobile telcos keep pushing away customers towards them and there is no IP level interconnect for Mobile for 4G

The Telco/Mobile Operator Cloud – what are the unique aspects for Operators?

I have been asked this a few times .. and its a changing goal post ..
Time to do a quick recap of my views

Qs is: What are the unique differentiators/ advantages for the Telecom Operator for the Cloud?

Here is a brief summary

The Cloud
- The Cloud can be seen to be ‘on demand/metered’ access to HW, SW and services. Hence, its all about business models

- Cloud converts CAPEX to OPEX. The ideas are not new but the technology is here which makes the business model feasible. There are many advantages – ex scaling, outsourced sysadmin etc

- Amazon S3 and EC2 clouds provide access to computing resources – ex disk storage, CPU etc and are one of the best example of Cloud services

- The problems with Cloud are the same as that of any ‘outsourcing’ –security, privacy etc etc

What can ‘telecoms’ do for the Cloud?
- In a word of ‘on demand’ services – the question arises – which services can telecoms uniquely provide(typically then Operator) – which others like amazon cannot

- Convergence is one i.e. you are with one provider and that provider manages your mobility ‘seamlessly’ at home and outside and also stores all your data

- This model has some limited success(typically in fixed to mobile convergence for homes) and in enterprises but has not really taken off

- ‘Bandwidth’ is another service that can be provided by the Operator ‘on demand’

- Ericsson is widely reputed to be speaking of 50 billion connected devices by 2020. The management of these devices could be an important part of the Mobile cloud

- Similarly, management of sensors in venues such as cafes could also be ‘outsourced’ and managed by the Operator

- The Operator could also sell QOS(Quality of service) but end to end QOS is hard to sell and gurantee for Operators

- There is now a clear trend to store music in the cloud (maybe followed by other content) ex from Apple to be announced next week

- Security, Privacy and Identity will always the the forte for the Operator

Managing the Cloud ecosystem end to end for the Telecom operator
- One of the unique challenges which Operators face, especially in the West, is that Operators do not control the device.
- This has relevance in the cloud context since many of the benefits (ex security, guaranteed QOS etc) cannot be provided unless the Operator also has a ‘footprint’ on the client(device)

- This can be achieved in at least three ways: A SIM card (which is controlled by the operator), an operator managed ‘on device portal’ or devices like femtocells

Hypothesis
considering the view that the Operator Cloud advantages can only be deployed if they have some footprint on the device, then there are three possible options

a) Security, privacy, Identity – you do not have to necessarily go via the Operator route for these, but the Operator has a long history in this space and also the motivation. I am moderating some webinars (free) at the Sim alliance on this topic and I will summarise these ideas more

b) Sensors and other devices – these are ‘greenfield’ and in some cases, the security, privacy and Identity arguments also
apply

c) There is also a wider aspect of ‘Voice and the Cloud’ which Martin Geddes and Dean Bubley are speaking of and that is also a differentiator for the Operator

That’s my thinking so far ..

comments welcome