Tuesday, December 28, 2010

BPN 1561 Looking back at 2010

The year has almost come to an end. It has been a crazy year. In the beginning of the year I had a knee replacement surgery and became a bionic man. Rehabilitation took a while, but I had great exercises as I travelled to Kuwait and Saudi Arabia. And in the second half of the year I was in New York, Finland, Sao Paolo (Brasilia),Austria and Abu Dhabi.

For the content world it was also a great year on two fronts: e-books and mobile content.

E-Readers became popular and cheaper. I saw them on the beach and in airports. They are no longer the private resort of Amazon with the Kindle, but you see them now in Germany and Austria and at very reasonable prices; in fact the price is still going down. Of course the acquisition of these reading devices stimulate the sale of e-books.
However there is a dark side to this success. Where e-readers used to be reading devices provided with displays based on the e-ink technology, and e-reader can now also be an i-Phone, i-Pad, a Samsung Galaxy or any digital pane manufactured in China. In the Netherlands Bol.com even gave away such a device (including a firmware mistake), when a buyer bought 10 e-books.
I think that only the e-reader devices with e-Ink technology should be allowed to be called e-readers and not every digital pane with a tft screen or other display. The fonts are not as sharp as the fonts on an e-Ink display, besides the other screens have an interference, while the e-Ink screen is stable. The e-Ink screens should be marketed for excellence with a pay-off slogan: e-Ink screen for YOUR eyes only.

As mobile telephones are getting smarter, the need for mobile content comes up. Mobile telephones are reaching over 100 percent coverage in some western countries, while in countries like India there are more mobile telephones than PCs (in 2009: 17 million mobile telephone over against 4 million internet subscriptions). As mobile telephones become smarter and the operating system war becomes more heavier (Apple IOS vs Google Android, leaving Nokia Symbian in limbo), mobile content is required for demonstration and use.
So it was great to be at the mobile content conference in Abu Dhabi in December 2010 and to see mainly new publishers exploring the possibilities of the fourth screen. Of course hardly any representatives of hard wire devices were present there as they still suppose that people will come to them. I wonder what the situation will look like in two years time when the next mobile content conference will be held: will the representatives of hard wire devices be there and how will mobile content/apps have developed.

BPN 1561

Saturday, December 25, 2010

Merry Christmas

At Christmas time I have to sing. I did so in many a choir. The best one was in Utrecht (The Netherlands) from 1986 till 1990 in a church which is now abolished. On Christmas day we sang masses by Mozart or Handel with the choir, soloists and an orchestra. But in 1990 that was over. The church was closed and the choir disabandonned; a really bad decision. Since I did not sing on Christmas again.
Now I am again singing in a choir, but not on this Christmas day. But boy, would I have loved to sing along the Hallelujah by handel with this flash mob.

Have a Merry Christmas.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

BPN 1560 European Virtual Academy

Prof. Doru Pop, coordinator of the EVA-project
Recently the EVA-project was kicked off in Cluj, the capital of Transylvania in Romania (domain of Frankestein!). The aim of this project is to build the campus of visual culture studies as a pilot of European Virtual Academy over the next two years. EVA will have courses, library, labs and forums in the digital world, taking advantage of social media tools and Open Source software.

EVA will involve the best experts of learning - the students - to create the campus. Professors, lecturers and artists are already preparing the first nine pilot courses to start next autumn. The general language of the campus will be English, but courses will also be translated or subtitled to Romanian, Italian, German, Hungarian and Finnish.

EVA will allow the students of the media and art programmes of partner universities to do exchange studies in a truly international environment without traveling.

EVA partners are Babes-Bolyai University, Cluj, Romania (coordinator), University of Milano-Bicocca, Milano, Italy, Hochschule Mittweida - University of Applied Sciences, Mittweida, Germany, Sapientia Hungarian University of Transilvania, Cluj, Romania and Tampere University of Applied Sciences, TAMK. Later EVA will also invite other universities to join us.

The project is funded by the European Union Lifelong Learning Programme. The web site of European Virtual Campus will be launched in April.

It is great to see the EVA-project to be launched. Partners involve people who know each other through the Europrix and the European Academy of Digital Media: Babes-Bolyai University, Cluj, Romania; University of Milano-Bicocca, Milano, Italy; Hochschule Mittweida - University of Applied Sciences, Mittweida, Germany; Tampere University of Applied Sciences, TAMK. The coordinator of this EVA-project, Babes-Bolyai University has already experience with virtual courses in the European Master of Interactive Media program (EMIM), in which the European Academy of Digital Media also partakes. Congratulations to Rodica Mocan, Cesare Massarenti, Robert Wierzbircki, and Cai Melakoski. As general secretary of the European Academy of Digital Media I wish the project a lot of success.

This posting is an adapation of the posting written by Cai Melakoski of Tampere University of Applied Sciences, TAMK. See: http://tamk-artmedia.blogspot.com

Tuesday, December 07, 2010

BPN 1559 WSA Mobile on the fast track (4)

In Abu Dhabi I met Ralph Simon. At first glance, he looks like the old man who walked out of the movie 'The curious case of Benjamin Button'. But he is young at heart. At his late age, he is the founder and chairman emeritus of the Mobile Entertainment Forum UK and ... the advisor to Lady Gaga.

He is not a stranger in the entertainment industry. He co-founded the independent Zomba Group of music companies (now a subsidiary of Sony Music Entertainment) with Clive Calder in the 1970s. In the mid-90s, he was Executive Vice President of Capitol Records and Blue Note Records in Hollywood and started EMI Music's global New Media division. He started Yourmobile (later renamed Moviso), the first ring tone company in the Americas, Europe, UK, Australia and Africa, in 1997.

Presently he also the consultant for mobile media for Lady Gaga. The star has many consultants around, telling her how to get clothed and what to sing. But Ralph Simon advises only on mobile media. Lady Gaga has discovered Twitter and publishes regularly tweets. In the meantime she has built up an army of followers of more than 7 million people. But Lady Gaga has set herself an goal: not 7 million followers but ….26 million followesrs.

And here is old Ralph Simon, who will have to think up a trick or face extinction. Of course more meat clothing will not attract more followers. But by looking at the Twitter tools and talking to the Twitter people, Ralph Simon will pull off the asignment and get Lady Gag no less than 26 million followers.

15/12/2010: My dear friend Marcella Lorenzi wrote a comment on the posting: I've been to Gaga's concert in Torino, last month... she knows how to entertain... as she claims, she's "a free bitch, baby"... at the end exaggeration will not pay..

BPN 1559

Monday, December 06, 2010

BPN 1558 WSA Mobile on the fast track (3)

This is the winners list of the World Summit Award Mobile

Category: m-Business and Commerce
Mobile vending
Consumer Reports Mobile Shopper
Mark & Spencers mobile commerce

Category: m-Government and Participation
German Government/ Deutsche Bundestag
Boston Connect
e-Gov Mobile Portal
Many to One SMS

m-Learning ad Education
BBC Jalana
Tickle Taps App
Hesabi (My Maths)

m-Entertainment and Lifestyle
Angry Birds
Hidden Park
Sekai Camera
African Digital

m-Tourism and Culture
Wikitude – Mobilizy
Ligo Ligo
Hungarian Tourism

m-Media ad News
You are Reporter
m.guardian.co.uk and the Guardian iPhone App
ABC iPhone/iPad application
Apontador Traffic/Apontador Transito

m-Environment and Health
Welldoc Diabetes Manager System
excellent mobile medical application – E.M.M.A
Mobile Te-Tol/Mobilne portal Te-Tol

m-Inclusion and Empowerment
Emergency Chain for Guatamala/ CADENA DE EMERGENCIA de Guatamala
Dialog Tradenet
Mobile Voices/Voz Mob
Mobile Link Services
My Handicap

BNP 1558

BPN 1557 WSA Mobile on the fast track (2)

On Monday December 6, 2010 the award ceremony was held. It was a fabulous event. Some 250 people in the room, seated for dinner, saw the show presented by Peter Bruck and his Abu Dhabi co-presenter.

Ready for the gala event

The gala was held at the Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Center.

Photographs had to be taken before the ceremony. Here my friend Osama Manzar with his friends/winners of India
And a photograph of Walter Betschel of the South African company TelFree and wife.

Peter Bruck and his co-presntor on stage

This was the award to be received by the winners of the WSA Mobile (photographs taken by Juha Kaario from Newelo via Facebook. The award was so heavy that many had to pay overweight to transport it to their home country.

The speech by H.E. Rashed Lahej Al Mansoori of ADSIC

After the award ceremony the buses arrived again at the YAS Hotel, where the fountain kept changing colours

The award ceremony was the best ever gala held in the history of the World Summit Award since 2003.
BPN 1557

Sunday, December 05, 2010

BPN 1556 WSA Mobile on the fast track (1)

I am in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. A few weeks ago I was looking at the racetrack during Formula 1 races, now I have a hotelroom on the racetracks. But no cars. This is a dreamplace, when you look at the buildings and ornaments, but you need to have a gold card! Here is my first photo-impression (You can enlarge the photographs by clicking on them; go back with the escape key).

This is the crown prince visiting the UN Global Alliance for ICT and Development (GAID) Conference and the World Summit Conference for Mobile Media exhibition.

This is the entrance to the Grand Prix Formula 1 race track and the track itself (below being cleaned every day, even if there are not any races).

The bedroom in the hotel is spacious; I guess 5 by 15 meters with a view on the race track. The wet dock is like a fish bowl.

This the Yas Hotel. It is a cubile with a free form around it full of lights, which change every second by colour.

This video is a view from my hotel room into the marina and watch the racetrack!

I received a comment from my friend Nick Clarke on the word 'dreamplace': Nick schreef: Jak, this is not the time for democratic European states to be seduced or corrupted by Sheikdoms.The wealth they produce fuels terrorism. I am very surprised by your last 2 posts. A 'dreamplace' - is a outrageous observation in a country that has no human rights and is one of the most lucrative sources of Taliban funds. Sleep in a bed funded to kill European Service Women and Men - killed in part by the Country you comment as 'dreamplace'. Jak I thought you were wise. Nick

Okay Nick, I guess that you mean my last post and not the last two ( an e-reader is not controversial). I did not use the word dream palace and I specified the word 'dreamplace' now in terms of buildings and ornaments.

BPN 1556