Samsung Android and Daylight Bamboozlement

Apple sues Samsung on Android

 

Apple and Samsung have gone to the courts. Apple contends that Samsung Android ripped off iPhone’s design.

As a part of this process it was revealed how Apple took inspiration from Sony’s industrial design approach. Many online took this as an opportunity to paint Apple in a negative light, saying they too copied. I have always believed being inspired is one thing, outright theft quite another.

Today am happy to link to one example of what outright theft looks like. Please see below an internal Samsung document presented in court that goes through screen by screen where Samsung Android fails in terms of usability. See every screenshot in the document and determine for yourself if the UI of almost every app was copied or not. They obviously could not get every detail right so were doing some reviews.

Android-Samsung-Design-Review

I have written about Android before. But this level of blatant copying is ridiculous. No wonder Steve Jobs was pissed off.

Every creator goes through a soul-wrenching process to create anything. Companies like Samsung/Google with their Android are a blot upon the finest instincts of humanity and spirit of capitalism.

[Update: Removed Scribd embed, linking to Samsung Design Review file now.

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Nest Gets Engineering and Marketing Right

Nest-thermostat

Nest is a thermostat. A thermostat is not usually worth talking about. Nest though is worth talking about and many have in the past.

Engineering or Marketing

There are products that are engineered well but the messaging falls flat. Some products get the marketing right but engineering fails to measure up. But there are times when engineering and the messaging surrounding it come together in perfect harmony. In such rare moments, the engineer and creative person can be content at what they have accomplished.

Nest’s latest advertisement does justice to the engineering behind it. Watch it first.

Reminds me of another product messaging.

Thinking Time

Instead of listing down how both examples resonate with me, am going to try something different.

First. Which other unsexy and green utility like Nest has better marketing?

Second. How would you introduce an iconic device like the Apple iPhone that might change how people communicate?

Fire away in the comments or drop me a note..details in the contact page. I shall post my views in comments mid next week.

On the iPhone, the Alien Monolith and Descent of an Avatar

Nature proceeds in her seemingly purposeless circles. Until nudged to a higher orbit. Where does the impulse to this nudge come from? As esoteric as this topic may sound, I believe we could better understand evolution by looking at a few parallels in technology, literature/art and Hindu mythology.

Mobile Industry and the iPhone

iphone

The mobile industry was a fairly docile world. You had phones with increasing in-built memory, cameras with larger megapixels and larger screens. Forms of clam-shell, flip-phones and the works. In this calm market entered the iPhone. There was nothing in it that was not known earlier-touch interface, accelerometer and the suave graphics.

Yet the tying together, the overarching superiority of the coming together of these elements made it seem almost alien to our common perceptions. Everything, even the usually lumbering telecom providers, yielded to the vision of the iPhone.

Ever since, the mobile industry has not been the same. In trying to emulate and better a competing product, the entire industry is under a evolutionary pressure to up their acts.

2001 Space Odyssey

monolith

Moonwatcher, the pre-historic simian protagonist, leads a sedentary life in this unique novel/movie. Hunting for food, defending his pack of simians from another tribe of simians and so on. Until IT arrives, the monolith. Inscrutable and unlike anything Moonwatcher has ever seen. While monkeying around the monolith he touches it.

Nothing outside has changed. He is not hurt or burnt. Yet, imperceptibly, he has changed within.

The docile simian has learned of aggression. And in the next encounter with those of another tribe shows he means business. Until then death was an immutable reality, but now he knew and understood that death could be conferred by the strong.

Here again, the introduction of another principle, rendered artistically as monolith, determines the course of evolution. The presence of danger in the environment alone could not cause Moonwatcher to gather the skills necessary to survive by aggression.

An, as of now, unknown causal agent triggered a change within Moonwatcher.

Descent of an Avatar

PitchingTent

The evolution of life proceeds in its Darwinian pace. The dinosaurs and the reptiles all. Some chosen for continuation and some for cessation. And then comes the impulse, that higher order and harmony which lifts life to the next level.

The first fish that peeped out of the water to breathe air. That transmuted suffocation into breathing. The first simian that stood up to gaze upon its environs. The mind that stumbled upon introspection. The first question. The first poetry. The first perception of anguish. Everything. Each was a push of our evolutionary impulse.

After each impulse we did not remain what we were just a moment ago.

The environs supported these but the Hindus believe that the cause for these high changes, these spurts and bursts of evolving life was the Avatar, a manifestation of the Supreme Divine who descends for a purpose.

There have been many Avatars. The popular ones are Narasimha, Sri Rama, Sri Krishna, with the detailed list available here. Follow the history of each and you find the evolutionary impulse working from the level of gross forms towards the subtle forms of Dharma.

A Common Theme

In each of these cases there is the steady progression of normal progress, until impelled by an element that exceeds our current common perceptions.

This impulse is named variously as genius, evolution and even called an Avatar by subtler perceptions.

Each is a facet of the one master impulse. And in that impulse will be the key that answers this manifold becomings of our individual selves and the Universe.

The Poor Man’s Nike+ iPhone, Without the iPhone and Nike

I just saw this post on LifeHacker about rolling your own Nike+ iPhone for free. The option that I use, while not exactly free, does the same job without having to nod to the Apple hype machine and Nike.

My setup requires.

  1. A Nokia NSeries Phone with GPS
    • This could be any N Series phone with GPS
  2. Free Sporttracker application
    • Download this from here. Page also contains list of phone models that are compatible. Follow the usual route to install applications on the Nokia phone.
  3. Data Plan
    • You will need this for just about any decent application
  4. You actually run
    • No amount of wizards, or tech platforms, can help you here..you need to get your lazy butt off that chair and run instead of browsing the net!
    • With or without a shoe! 

The Sporttracker application allows you to export your run routes to Google Map etc. The graphs are quite accurate, you can measure every run and see how things have been fairing since you took that fire-vow to get yourself fit.

Of course, you still can’t do anything about the Apple Fanboys who will insist that their’s is the coolest device on the planet. But what could you do anyway about people who have donated all reasoning to St. Steve!

Do note that this user experience of Apple’s AppStore will be absent here. But Nokia with the NSeries 3rd edition has been making giant leaps on our behalf, and for their survival, on the user experience front. 

Highly recommended. Anyway, have you tried this? What are your experiences?

And Apple Can Get Away With This? WTF!

Well, it goes like this. A commercial product goes to sale, say people call it the iPhone. They have an SDK.

An enterprising publisher sees a legitimate opportunity for a book on the SDK. Publisher goes through all formal processes, or at least I guess so from the description provided, by signing NDA and all.

Now the hitch is the book is blocked, because the NDA is not lifted.

Are these guys serious?

[Update: Today, the 3rd October IST, I read that Apple have lifted their NDA. Good for them. The walls keep away innovation on their own platform. Without innovation, even Apple will turn out to be a commodity platform. And that cannot be good for the industry!]

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