Archive for the ‘observation’ Category

Mit der Verfügbarkeit von Microsofts Lumia 950xl Ende 2015 unternahm ich meinen zweiten Versuch, von Apples iPhone Abstand zu gewinnen. Nicht weil ich  muss, eher weil ich möchte und im Kontext einer Microsoft-nahen Beratungsfirma Microsoft-Produkte ausprobiere und mir selbst ein Bild mache (“eat your own dogfood”-style).

Nach den ersten, wenigen Wochen der Nutzung sind folgend ein paar Verbesserungsvorschläge für das Windows Phone aufgeführt, die ich aus meiner Sicht (aViewOnIt) mit hoher Priorität erwarten würde.

Entsperren des Bildschirms:

Ein geräteunabhängiges Entsperren (Wo ist der Knopf, auf welcher Seite, zum Aktivieren des Bildschirms?) über ein dreifaches Tippen auf den Bildschirm halte ich für sinnvoll und kommt der button-less Bedienung von mobilen Geräten entgegen.
Update 15.02.2016: Es scheint Gerätebedingt zu sein, da Win10 generell dieses Feature bereits vorsieht, beim 950XL jedoch  nicht vorhanden ist.

Deutsche Bahn-App:

Die Bahn-App für WinPhone ist mindestens aus 2014 (“Info über …”), eventuell auch aus 2013 (App-Startbildschirm).
In jedem Fall sollte die App auf den aktuellen Stand gebracht und mit den Features aus der iOS- und Android-Welt aktualisiert werden. Den größten Mehrwert würde im ersten Schritt eine Offline-Funktionalität für Bahn-Fahrkarten bringen.
Update – 25.02.2016: Die Win-App “bahnticket” erlaubt den offline-Download von gekauften Tickets.

Akku-Management:

Cortana und eine lange Akkulaufzeit passen nicht zusammen. Cortana ist aus diesem Grund auf meinem Windows Phone deaktiviert, so dass dieses Feature leider nicht zum Einsatz kommen kann. Bei aktiviertem Cortana kann ich einen Ladezyklus für ca. einen halben Tag verwenden. Mit ausgeschaltetem Cortana gibt es eine deutliche Verbesserung. Im Flugmodus verliert das Windows Phone über Nacht (23 – 7 Uhr) ca. 6% Akku, mit eingeschaltetem WLAN und Bluetooth gern auch über 30%, je nach Standort und Umgebung.

Automatische Helligkeit:

Das Feature “Anzeigehelligkeit automatisch anpassen” ist in dunklen Räumen meines Erachtens noch nicht sensibel genug und sollte noch etwas weiter heruntergedimmt werden können.

Lautstärkeregelung:

Leider ein No-Go, zumindest so lange ich durch den Wecker in nicht kontrollierbarer Lautstärke geweckt werde. Am Abend vorher stelle ich die Lautstärke auf 1 während ich in der Wecker-App bin, werde aber am Morgen bei 5 (von 10) Lautstärkeeinheiten geweckt.
Zusätzlich wünsche ich mir von der Standard-Wecker-App ein ansteigenden Weckerton … auch wenn Weihnachten gerade erst vorbei ist 😉

Frohes Neues!

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Dachthema „Managing Trust”

via Ralph Haupter kommentiert CeBIT-Eröffnung – MicrosoftPresse – Site Home – TechNet Blogs.

Leider ist der Blogeintrag von Ralph Haupter nicht wirklich zufriedenstellend, da auch hier die Antwort auf das Thema “Managing Trust” fehlt.

Die Aussage

‚Managing Trust’ bedeutet für uns auch, unseren Kunden selbst die Kontrolle über ihre Daten und Privatsphäre weitestgehend zu ermöglichen.

gibt leider auch keinen Aufschluss über Microsofts Vorstellung.

Configuration vs. Customization

Posted: 30. April 2010 in observation

Vendors offering mainly SaaS or ASP solutions do highlight more and more their software’s configuration cababilities instead of going through long lasting customization exercises.

What is the difference?

Following a statement from SuccessFactor’s blog :
“[…] if something is configurable, it means the existing software can be worked (via the standard user interface) to reflect the change.
If it requires customization it means software code has to be changed (added or moved around) so the software can do what you want it to. […]”

The following might be a two word definition:

Configuration = no coding
Customization = coding required

As nothing is black and white (except “black” and “white”), vendors offer a “customizable configuration”, which is about adding custom code to standard and configurable elements such as text boxes, workflows, etc.
Some people also call it “exits”, which indicates that this concept is not new at all.

Example: Create a workflow, which gets triggered if a status field changes from “new” to “in progress”. The workflow action could be a field update or the creation of an email, which gets send to [whoever]. If the availabe standard workflow action list does not meet your requirements, you can add an exit. This exit allows to add custom coding/logic like usage of certain fields or calculations.

At the end you get a customized solution again.

How could you avoid it? -> use standards
Can you even avoid it? –> use standards
Apparently, a provocative answer, which just triggers further thoughts and discussions … also on processes and automatisms.

Also interesting: Would you configure or customize an XML settings file?

I recently spend some thoughts on email etiquette and whether to follow the proposed rules or how to improve my and the others email sending behavior.

After reading tips such as “Top 26 Most Important Rules of Email Etiquette” or “Email etiquette” I tend to say that you should NOT follow any of these rules without considering the context your are writing an email´.

For instance – “Avoid using URGENT and IMPORTANT”:
Why should the usage be avoided if something is really urgent or important? There are so many unimportant emails that highlighting of something important could makes sense.

Or – “Do not overuse Reply to All”:
If someone starts using a certain distribution list, it certainly can make sense keeping all people in the loop, which requires using the reply all function multiple times. Otherwise, who is doing the de-briefing session, then!?

Certainly, this can be completed for all the other rules, but I do not want to break potential blogger rules 😉

When checking out cloud / SaaS solutions the focus should not only be on functional requirements, but also on non-functional requirements.
They can be different to requirements for on-premise solutions.

Requirements
1. Integration into the Corporate Intranet
2. Look and feel like the Corporate Intranet
3. Availability of LDAP user data in cloud solution
4. (re-)Usage of user’s domain login name and password
5. Storage of data in [country]
6. Workers council  proven customization capabilities for German users
7. Integration with existing (Enterprise-)Search
8. Integration with existing collaboration platform

For sure some of them are old-world-thinking, not cloud-related or just too picky. However, new paradigms such as cloud or SaaS solutions require updated requirement catalogues.

Others are just seen as standard,  but still the cloud paradigm requires a change of people’s mind set or would you require “high scalability” explicitly? No, it’s part of the paradigm and nothing on top. (However, challenging is always recommended 😉 )

So, how could an evaluation result for cloud solutions look like … !?

Evaluation
… as always we find some good things and bad things at the end of an evaluation.

1. Prototyping – good
Impressive (!) to see how quick cloud vendors implement prototypes based on a detailed design process chart, which they received two days prior to the workshop.
2. Flexibility – good
The platform is outstandingly flexible in terms of customization for visualizations, field definitions, workflow and escalation settings,etc.
3. Licensing – bad
Being an optimist I wanted to combine Cloud and SaaS, so we asked for more flexible license models compared to the offered ones. Unfortunately, this is something we are still dealing with as the license models are still “old-world-thinking”, i.e. buy a license for one year and it stays for one year independently of usage, etc.
4. Self-Perception – bad
They cannot take over the world and deliver solutions for each and every requirement/situation, which is just ok. However, they think they could and they think they’ll beat each and every market leader out there – whatever they’re are offering.
(ok – a little bit extreme, but still the message remains)

In regards to the non-functional requirements it was “ok” (only), because:

1. Integration into the Corporate Intranet
yes, e.g. iFrame, deep link.
BUT: no iFrame for specific parts of the window (e.g. Dashboard); only the entire window possible
2. Look and feel like the Corporate Intranet
good; some customizations such as logo via GUI. Further customization through CSS adjustments or developments in provided environment
3. Availability of LDAP user data in cloud solution
good; Web Services interaction – as far as the theory is concerned
4. (re-)Usage of user’s domain login name and password
good; Web Services interaction, SAML
5. Storage of data in [country]
no (of course) – no promise on which data centers worldwide store data
6. Workers council  proven customization capabilities for German users
good
7. Integration with existing (Enterprise-)Search
most challenging requirement, which requires deeper analysis on requirements and technological solutions/options
8. Integration with existing collaboration platform
so la la, as they prefer their own functionality. Offered solutions: deep links

Conclusion

You have to go into the cloud!?
This question is just to high level. It strongly depends on what you want to put into the cloud.

Go for infrastructure – yes, go for storage – yes, go for smaller delineated areas – yes.
For large movements better have a second look on whether your requirements and expectations will be met or you better plan with a phased approach, because there is one thing for sure … the number of cloud offerings will grow rapidly and their maturity will do so as well.

In any case: cloud solutions are worth to consider for “optimizing” the IT landscape and reducing costs.

Searching with Google goggles is one example of how the Internet gets more and more extended by the Outernet (not this one ;-)) and how the digital life connects with the real life.

Various recently published articles (e.g. pressrelations) also describe the latest activities on new apps and devices supporting human beings to find information in real time.

This always reminds me of the move “Minority Report” from 2002, which is a science fiction film directed by Steven Spielberg and loosely based on the short story "The Minority Report" by Philip K. Dick (1956).

Now, today’s technology allows us to get exactly what we dreamt of years ago. Look:

or this one related more to the Outernet.

And of course, as the release of new apps and devices will become faster and faster also our life will be affected by it faster.

BUT how will people deal with all this new technology stuff?

What about those groups of people, who are not too much into technology or IT at all?

It is not only the report created in 2006 by the Communications Consumer Panel shedding some light on older people or people, who do not have regular interaction with technology.

I’ll stop here as this post could go in different directions …

However, the main message is said: Life becomes faster and more integrated with everything!

Outernet – What is it!?

Posted: 8. December 2009 in observation
Tags: , ,

Somehow related to Internet, but still not yet defined entirely; at least it seems there is still no common understanding on what “a Outernet” is.

Screening the net – or better the internet to be correct – does only show up a very few findings on definitions or use cases.

In summary, the Outernet is an extension of the Internet and brings the Internet into our real life.

image

The Urban Dictionary defines the Outernet as external reality, unlike the Internet which is the internal reality.

The Outernet as an extension allows users of it to:

  • Browse in real life to get data about user’s surroundings (e.g. Wikitude)
  • Take any device to access the Internet where ever you are, e.g.  mobile, computer, watch, net book, on wall screens, magazines
  • Integrate any information from the Internet into real life and vice versa, e.g. make a picture and get further information about it or get information on the next restaurant from the Internet and get your meal in real life
  • Consider surroundings actively in communications via Internet
  • Share messages, pics, voice streams, etc. to others in real time
  • Communicate with others over the net were ever you and they are

Babylon has provided a definition for Outernet as well, which links also to the terms “Matrix” and “the Net”.

Outernets
Systems of computer networks that are not bundled on the Internet but nevertheless can be accessed to the Internet through gateways that translate outernet protocols into Internet protocols. The worldwide system of gateways is called the "Matrix" or "the Net".

Both, the Internet and the Outernet would make the Net”.

Nils Müller from Trend One also shares his view on the Outernet and highlights the current developments in Asia, Europe and the US.

Interesting to see is view on Shy-Tec, Print+ and printable loudspeakers … watch out:

Considering the speed of new apps and devices allowing us to bring the Internet to real life, there will be huge impact on us in the coming month and years.

I am confident that discussions about the Outernet will rise suddenly soon.