Ryan Rix, Vice Administrator

Parker and Marshall Minardo, most famous in the PalmOS world for the Saguaro widget engine, which after a few years of development was scrapped. After scrapping this project, the pair was unsure of where to go. Apparently, they made the right choice in going to the iPhone:

Parker and Marshall Minardo, owners of a software company called EdgeRift, created a $1 iPhone application called Emergency Radio that gives users access to more than 1,200 radio feeds from police, fire and emergency frequencies around the country.
Within days of its launch in early May, the application shot up to No. 2 on Apple’s list of paid applications. As of Friday, Emergency Radio was still ranked in the top 40.
More than 180,000 iPhone and iPod Touch owners have downloaded Emergency Radio, and the application is currently averaging between 1,000 and 1,200 downloads per day, said 20-year-old Parker, Edgerift’s CEO.

The boys net in 70% of each sale, bringing in more profit than they probably ever got in PalmOS sales…

Congratulations, Parker and Marshall. Now come develop for the Pre ;)

Read the full story: Tucson brothers create iPhone sensation.

A blogger by the name of Jon Lech Johanson has released a small snippit of (presumably) Pre code which tells, in layman’s terms, iTunes that it is an iPod while in their recently announced “Media Sync” mode.

What does this mean for you?

Well, it means that current versions of iTunes will indeed sync with the Pre — Until Apple pushes out an update to iTunes to block this, as it inevitably will. The sync technology taht they use is, like all Apple technologies, held very close to their company and they are really a fan of the Walled Garden philosophy of software design (we will provide you with approved software for your iPod, approved software for your media sync, and these will only run on approved hardware.) They will change the technology used in the sync on their products, push it out in a iPhone upgrade and an iTunes upgrade, and make it impossible for the Pre to use this Media Sync Feature.

It also entails negative effects on open source applications with the ability to sync to the iPod, such as RhythmBox and Amarok. These tools rely on the standard method of sync that has been reveresed and changing these sync methods will break existing software, if these updates are pushed to the devices.

What does this mean for Palm?

Apple won’t sue The Big Orange over this, in my opinion. Unless there is more code than what Jon originally posted, mimicking a “trade secret” or patented sync method, there is little grounds for anything else that would stand up in court. Sure Palm used iPod values in standard USB descriptors in place of their own, but that is in no way patent infringing or in any way illegal.

The question is not the legal ramifications, but the egg that’s going to be splattered on their face when Apple decides to do something to break this “feature” that Palm has announced as supported and hyped. People buying the phone expecting it to sync flawlessly and JustWork will be disappointed, and Palm will get ever more bad PR.

Just what it needs.

What do you think Apple will do? Will their suits be banging on Palm’s door, or will their sync finally be set free by Big Orange?

An insider report from a close friend of mine over at Palm has informed me of talks that Nokia has begun talks to make a bid for 50% of Palm’s stock, giving them majority share and ownership of the Sunnyvale, California company. Nokia, who recently bought Trolltech’s Qt software, may be planning on turning the webOS into a platform for their newer Symbian devices while also taking out their top competitor.

After filing for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection last week, Palm asked their CEO Ed Colligan to step down and brought in Kimmo Kinnunen, Nokia’s Director.
No news has been released on the fate of Palm’s much anticipated device, the Pre, however my sources have information that Sprint may be getting a shipment of new Nokia devices on April 31, including a device known simply as Nebula.

This news is breaking and I have very little information, however, I will update this post with the latest information as it comes to me; my source has gone dead currently, so hopefully I can get some more information as soon as possible!

Palm  has recently released some fresh information of the Mojo SDK and development of webOS applications:

The first chapter of the official resource for programming the new webOS platform, “Palm webOS: Developing Applications in JavaScript Using the Palm Mojo Framework” is now available. The book is written by Palm Vice President and Software Chief Technology Officer Mitch Allen along with members of the webOS development team and is being edited and distributed by O’Reilly Media.
O’Reilly is also hosting a webinar with Mitch Allen on February 25 at 10 a.m. PT to offer developers a preview of the webOS operating system and development environment, followed by a Q&A session. A link to register for the webinar will be available here on Monday February 16th.

[Link added by editor]

The book is currently nine pages long, and provide new insights and screenshots of webOS and what development on this platform will be like! Among the information given is information about the notification area, how Cards — the webOS method of displaying what applications are active and what they are up to — are handled and displayed. even some small snippets of UI code are given:

Typically, you would declare the widget within a scene’s view file, then direct Mojo to instantiate the widget during the corresponding scene assistant setup method using the scene controller’s setupWidget method:

// Setup toggle widget and an observer for when it is changed.
// this.toggle attributes for the toggle widget, specifying the 'value'
// property to be set to the toggle's boolean value
// this.togglemodel model for toggle; includes 'value' property, and sets
// 'disabled' to false meaning the toggle is selectable
//
// togglePressed Event handler for any changes to 'value' property

this.controller.setupWidget(‘my-toggle’,
this.toggle = { property : ‘value’ },
this.toggleModel = { value : true, disabled : false });

this.controller.listen(‘my-toggle’, Mojo.Event.propertyChange,
this.togglePressed.bindAsEventListener(this));

Development Tools

The Palm Developer Tools (PDT) are installed from the SDK and include targets for Linux, Windows (XP/Vista) and Mac OS X. The tools enable you to create a new Palm project using sample code and framework defaults, search reference documentation, debug your app in the weOS emulator or an attached Palm device, and publish an application. Chapter 2 includes more details about the tools in Palm’s SDK and third-party tools, but you’ll find a brief summary in Table 1-1

The introductory chapter of the webOS programming guide can be found here.

What do you think about these new revelations on the webOS front?

The boys who put together iPhoneDevCamp in July 2007 to prepare applications developers to develop using the iPhone SDK are putting together an event specifically for Pre developers.

The event, dubbed preDevCamp is hsoted by @whurley @giovanni and @dancrumb (all they provide are their twitter handles) and events are being set up all across the world, including yours truly’s home town Phoenix, Arizona.

The dates of these events, since they are not officially affiliated with Palm, Inc, are being held a week AFTER the Pre is released. These events will give developers much needed time on these devices, even if they are not able to get their own from Sprint/Palm for development purposes.

See here and here for information of preDevCamp, and here for registration information — you’ll need to select your particular city.

News from Linux Pro magazine is that Sony is releasing a 10MP camera which runs busybox, and believe it or not, ALP, ACCESS’s thought-to-be-deathware-like-cobalt Operating System.

The camera, the Sony DSC-G3 runs busybox and kernel 2.6.11 for ALP. The makefile (source available here) for the kernel states in part:
VERSION = 2
PATCHLEVEL = 6
SUBLEVEL = 11
EXTRAVERSION := $(EXTRAVERSION)-alp
NAME=Woozy Beaver

What this may mean for the ALP platform in the future is beyond me. Having a full fledged camera running a handheld operating system seems like far overkill to me, but perhaps Sony may be shifting in a new direction with their devices, taking steps to slowly but surely integrate these two platforms into one.

This is not a full ALP operating system on the camera; only the kernel is used from ALP.

As the holidays approach one may be left looking for a gift for that special gadgetphile in their life. New phone? no. New case? no. New operating system? no. Whatever shall I do?

What about a new car mount? The boys over at USBFever have managed to put together a fine stock of various style car mounts ranging from suction cup mounted, to air vent mounted, to even a mount that goes straight into the lighter, allowing for a constant charge and little clutter!

We at TamsPalm have obtained a version of the first, a suction cup mounted, 2-in-1 car mount. The shipment comes with the actual mount, and two holders, which are universal to all USBFever products.

trans The USBFever 2 in 1 Car Mount

The mount is unique in that each arm is made out of a flexible material (USBFever terms it as goosePipe) allowing you to position it anyway that you see fit.

img 3205 300x225 The USBFever 2 in 1 Car Mount

While the dual armed design may seem a little over the top and unnecessary at first glance, having easy access to two devices at once (ie, my lifeflash, which is playing music while I am driving, and my cellular which has speaker phone enabled) is very handy indeed. The dual arms could also be used to hold a gps device or other standalone gizmo along with your Treo smartphone.

The holders themselves are ingeniously designed, allowing you to use virtually any device in any position imaginable. The devices are held in place by two spring loaded arms on the sides of the holders which, when squeezed together, clamp the device into place.  Releasing the device once you have reached your destination is as simple as pressing a button on the back of the holder.

img 3207 300x225 The USBFever 2 in 1 Car Mountimg 3206 300x225 The USBFever 2 in 1 Car Mount

The holder, when attached to the mount arm, allows you to rotate the device 180 degress in each direction, allowing you to view your device in landscape mode (however, I don’t recommend watching videos while driving!) which is preferable for some PocketTunes skins.

img 3208 300x225 The USBFever 2 in 1 Car Mount

The device also has one of the most thought out suction cups I have seen. Most require you to push and prod until the correct suction is reached, or God forbid, you have to lick the cup to attain proper suction, however USBFever’s mounts use a hingy thinger, to obtain an insane suction with little effort on your part by using a locking hinge to gain leverage and suction . The suction can withstand running over even the hardest speed bumps at full speed (believe me ;-) ) and make for an insanely reliable mount. The suction cup even allows you to attach the mount to a desk, doubling it as an office cradle, should the need come up!

img 3210 300x225 The USBFever 2 in 1 Car Mount

All in all, the Twin Holder car mount is a wonderful deal at only $25.99 at USBFever. (http://usbfever.com/index_eproduct_view.php?products_id=428) To anyone who is ever listening to music while they are driving, has a GPS kit, or would simply like easy access to their speaker phone, USBFever is the place to go!

Palm is preparing to release their new operating system, codenamed Nova, and devices designed to run on it at CES 2009, as recently confirmed by Business Week. According to Jon Rubenstein and others, ” the goal is to create products that bridge the gap between Research In Motion’s BlackBerry devices, oriented to work and e-mail, and Apple’s iPhone, oriented to fun.”

Investors as always have high hopes, but will the crazy boys at Palm be able to pull out something big enough to help the ailing company?

After a year long stint trying to configure Debian Sid to work stably on my laptop — and for the most part failing miserably; maybe that’s why sid is ‘unstable’ :P — I decided it was time to stop pretending I could configure Debian, so I installed Ubuntu, which happens to exist specifically for people who can’t handle configuring debian.

Jokes aside (please don’t comment on my horrid sense of humor, I’m probably legally insane right now.) I installed fedora 10 on my Gateway MT3423 laptop. Here’s what I have to say about the newly released distro: Very sound, very stable, very reliable, even running KDE4.1.3, I have had little to no issues with it; only positives.

Let me start by saying this: RedHat did a superb job on the Anaconda installer. It is by far one of the easiest installer system that I have ever used. It’s fast, it’s clean, it’s concise. It let me deploy an entire system based on the packages I wanted, which, based on my prior experiences is not the norm… at least with debian, you are hardwired to set up either a desktop (GNOME, no other option) webserver, sql server (only postgresql) etc… With Anaconda, you can choose individual packages, or just choose a desktop environment (KDE, GNOME, XFCE, LXDE, etc)

So, after a nice install, I got to see the shiny new KDE4.1 desktop. Fedora 10 ships with a very nice blue and black theme called Solar, which is primarily an image of the sun, or some other star, filtered through a blue filter, imo. It looks really snazzy; everything matches, from bootscreen (which I could, for the life of me, not get working on Debian) to the desktop background. The only thing I had to do out of the box was change KWin to use a different color scheme, to match the desktop — I used Zion (reversed), a nice high contrast black theme.

kde desktop with plasmoids 320x200 First Look: Fedora10 and KDE4.1

KDE4 introduced the concept of plasmoids, little widgets that can be stuck anywhere on the desktop, little widgets for, say, taskmanagement, calculating, even twitter. The choices were a little paltry, but then again most users have yet to upgrade their desktop, leaving the core of developers still at kde3.

Fedora 10 also ships with integration with SELinux, a kernel level tool used to verify that security is at it should be and to prevent root use as much as possible. While this is kind of a pain the behind for me, a regular laptop user running virtuall no services, and not minding an occaisional typing of his root password, I can definitely see the cool-factor and reasons behind it. It was just a bit of a pain to get NetworkManager to work when SELinux blocks it from doing a dhcp reservation. I fixed that though with a minor bit of hacking in the policy files, which, by the way, is managed by the Fedora system configuration tools, another stellar part of Fedora 10.

Fedora — and I assume RHEL — use system-config-* tools to bind up all of their configuration tools into one quick little interface, which keeps one from dredging around in /etc and keeps the system nice and easy to administrate; I haven’t had to vim a single /etc file except once to change the desktop manager to KDM.

While KDE4 is still a little rough around the edges (no way to hide unused tray icons? what?) it shows great promise and great, erm, entertainment for little technophiles like me. :) And that hiding unused tray icons will be in KDE4.2 :)

Palm has been at work advertising on their hardly little PalmOS device, the Centro. Their newest ads, centerred around the holidays focus on “Claüse,” the reinvented Santa, whose life was turned around after he received a Centro.

While the man is definitely creepy looking, this seems to be a very interesting advertisement campaign, and has the hopes of capturing some sort of press coverage ;)

This is just the next step in a long line of palm’s dealing with Facebook; perhaps Palm is looking to attract a wider range of users, branching from their usual corporate appeal. Perhaps some new, exciting devices are in the tubes?

Anyways, the ad campaign is here (palm.com) and here (facebook.com)

What do you think Palm is up to?

PS: Cheers to Nicoya over at #palm on irc.freenode.net for the tip!

Our overlords have been updating their mail client, GMail. For those of you who don’t know, gmail provides (currently) 7265 MB of storage space for any mail you can possibly chug into it. I highly recommend google mail to anyone who is looking for a new account.

At any rate, they have recently updated gmail adding themes and making labs available to all users.

The themes are basically just css hacks that give gmail an entirely different feel:

mail fullscreen 320x200 Gmail adds themes, labs for all

There are about twenty themes to choose from, ranging from plain color changes to images, and full theme conversions. However the ability to use user created themes is not involved (probably a good idea, imo!)

Along with themes, those of use who are into bleeding edge features can play with ranging from a quick links tab next to your list of labels, which allows you to throw any sort of link you would like and have it available at any gmail session . Also available is mouse gestures, keystrokes, signature tweaks, and mail goggles (not googles, as I thought when I first read it):

mail goggles Gmail adds themes, labs for all

Both of these new features can be available from the settings menu in GMail.

Dataviz has recently updated their Word Document editor to version 11.000.

This new version is available for 30$ (standard version) or $50 (premium version)

New features include:

* View tracked changes in word processing files
* Apply and view Styles in word processing files
* View border and wrapped text in spreadsheets
* 10 starter Templates included for creating Word and Excel files

This update brings Documents to Go as the only way to view and edit Word 2007 files, so if you need to use these files on a daily basis, it is a highly recommended piece of software!

Full details, including purchase information

Just a quick hit to all Linux/Mac users here at TamsPalm:

While I certainly do not condone the use of nonfree software I felt this worthy to pass on:

So on Tuesday, all of CodeWeavers products, which allow Mac and Linux users to run Windows applications, can be downloaded for free — instead of $40 each — at the company’s website, www.codeweavers.com.

not sure exaclty the time of its expiration, but I am currently watching a friend blast away on Battlefield 1942 :)

Original source: http://www.startribune.com/lifestyle/33338904.html?elr=KArksUUUU

Donald Kirker of OpenMobl systems made a presentation at Monday’s Stanford Palm User Group displaying the new UI behind Universe, code named Graphite.

The preview is “mostly showing what I hope to have implemented in the future” and does not have much besides the new UI system.

Graphite is a completely new UI system which does not use the standard PalmOS UI, giving Universe a more modern feel, somewhat similar to the (now defunct) LineUp and Saguaro vapourwares. However, Universe is not vapourware. :)

Feel free to download the UI preview (local copy for posterity: universe.prc)

Here are some screenshots of the beta (courtesy SimonPF from IRC via Alexander Gratz)

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