Category Archive: Device Selection

Google-Project-Glass

Google has started to unveil a new/old thing.  This week I saw a video showing what Google Glass might or could look like at: http://www.intomobile.com/2012/04/04/google-project-glass-could-androidpowered-augmented-reality-glasses/?utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter

 

The idea of glasses with built in augmented reality technology has been around for years. But it seems more like the next wave of reality is on the verge of hitting the consumer market.  As we become a more and more tech savvy society we are less likely to reject new ideas like “smart glasses”  or wearable devices. We have all seen the si-fi movies that have predicted our current technologies like tablets and cell phones and then said “that makes sense”.  The use of glasses is just the next wave of UI to keep us not only enamored with tech but helping us interact with technology more efficiently.

Google hopes the glasses will appeal to people who want information automatically in front of their eyes. No longer will you be hassled to take your phone of your pocket to take a photo, answer a call, send a text message or look up directions.  All this can be can be handled via your glasses and voice command.

I like the idea of wearing my smartphone instead of pulling it out of my pocket every time i need to do something.  The big downfall is the use while driving, I see this as a major obstacle to the glasses.  The no texting laws are in place to deal with the distractions a phone can have on a driver. I cant imagine having a second viewable pane in front of my eye while navigating a tight curve or heavy traffic.  One other down side might be the weight of them, glasses are relatively light but add the smartphone to your frames and wow your ears would feel it.  On the other hand if the glasses were an extension of your current phone and you could connect them via Bluetooth that would be a great option.  All in all there will be people who will love them and those that will hate them but as technology moves more and more in the direction of user comfort it can only make it better as far as i am concerned.

Rod Puzey

Follow us on twitter: @zenwaremobile or @zenwareinc

Zenware is a Boise Idaho based company that specializes In custom mobile software development, custom iOS development, custom Android development, ipad software development, iphone software development, custom web development, web hosting and Saas based work order management software.

MEAP Nirvana? Is developing your own mobile solution wise?

For the past year I have consulted with a company that has sought to develop their own mobile solution. Early in the consulting process I recommended a cloud based mobile solution that aligned with their business model and processes. My recommendation to go with a pre-packaged solution that met 90% of their needs was primarily based on the fact that they hadn’t put together a dedicated team to work on the project. Their attitude was, “A MEAP will make up for any difficiencies our developer might have in time or expertise”, or “I can work on this project while traveling”.

They have come to realize that while a MEAP solution provides great power to accomplish their mobility goals there are still a lot of challenges and complexities involved with developing an enterprise mobility solution that require time, evaluation, dedication and development.

A very simple example of this happened this week. The same company that decided to build their own mobile application approached us to solve some challenges they had encountered developing their own mobile app. As our team looked at the mobile solution a few simple, yet crucial, points were missed in their application design. Here are two examples:

  1. Work order tables were joined on a customer name without having a unique customer ID. The result – if they changed a customer name from “Freds” to “Fred’s” all ties to previous work orders would have been lost.
  2. Work order numbers were not unique and could be shared between multiple customers. The result – Customer A could end up with Customer B’s information. Not such a good idea.

There were other complications within their app but you can see how a few simple things can negatively impact the results of your mobile solution.  It is important to recognize there are difficulties and challenges in customer developing a mobile solution whether using a MEAP or traditional coding.

The following is a list of questions and considerations you should weigh before embarking in developing your own mobile solution:

  1. Do you have dedicated resources available to gather all the business and technical requirements of your application?
  2. Do you understand the business process in the field? What does the field technician need to be successful? What does the corporate side need to be successful? The key is building a mobile solution that provides the right data at the point of action.
  3. Do you have and can you dedicate the right technical resources to design, develop, test, deploy and support your application?
  4. Do you have experienced mobile application designers that can build intelligent business logic within the application and not simply design a great interface?
  5. What mobile device options are available? What device features are required by the end user – barcode scanning, GPS, RFID or are consumer grade devices sufficient?
  6. With what backend systems do you to have to integrate?

Mobility has become an integral part of business. It’s no longer a “would be nice” part of your business, it is mission critical. Whether using a MEAP or traditional development methodologies the key is developing a mobile solution that can evolve as your business and mobile technology evolves.

Jody Sedrick
Follow me on Twitter: @jodysedrick and @zenewareinc
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Zenware is a Boise Idaho based company that specializes In custom mobile software development, custom iOS development, custom Android development, ipad software development, iphone software development, custom web development, web hosting and Saas based work order management software.

No connection but fully powered on high adventure backpack trip

Frank Church Wilderness - copyright 2011 Jody Sedrick

Climbing the mountaintops and ridges of the Frank Church Wilderness with my 14-year-old son and 4 other boys last week was an unforgettable experience. Last week we ventured off trail across incredible mountain scapes in an attempt to complete the 52-mile Big Baldy-Indian Creek Loop in 5 days.

While we ended up having to come out a day early due to some of our group getting serious altitude sickness, it was an INCREDIBLE experience. We are planning a second attempt next year.

On my trip, I decided to bring my iPhone to capture photos. No, I wasn’t thinking I’d have connectivity and check emails late at night. I was on an adventure and intended to capture every moment on the iPhone’s camera.  So I decided to pack a lightweight

USB + AA solar charger from PowerFilm Solar to keep my iPhone fully charged.

Powerfilm Solar USB + AA Charger

Here are my findings:
  • Time to charge the 2 AA rechargeable batteries: about 2 hours
  • Time to fully charge my battery from 50%: 2 hours
  • Charging my iPhone worked better if I charged the batteries at the same time.
  • Folded up very nicely for easy storage
  • 2 grommets made it easy to attach the unfolded solar charger to my back backpac

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  • Ideal for light charging.
  • Flashing indicator light sometimes was difficult to see in direct sunlight
  • As you would expect, direct sunlight was optimal for charging.  Diffused or indirect sunlight didn’t work nearly as well. Fortunately we had a lot of sun.
Tips:
  • I found charging my iPhone everyday with the PowerFilm Solar ideal.  One of my hiking companions let his iPhone battery drop to 17% capacity. We charged the application for half a day a recharged the battery to 84%.
  • I switched my iPhone to Airplane Mode and shut off all unused applications. This significantly helped reduce the drain on my battery.

Jody and Christian Sedrick hiking in Frank Church Wilderness 2011

All in all I’d give the PowerFilm Solar a thumbs up. Yes it was a little slower than I’d prefer to charge the iPhone from lower battery status. But for continuous light charging it was a great option.

PowerFilm Solar Specs:
  • Solar operating voltage: 3.6V
  • Solar operating amps: .4A
  • Weight w/o batteries: 4.9 ounces
  • Folded dimensions: 3.24 x 5.55 x 1.38 inches  (83 x 140 x 35 millimeters)
  • Unfolded dimensions: 24 x 5.5 inches (620 x 140 millimeters)
  • USB Charging Voltage: 5.0V
  • USB Charging Current (Amps): up to 1.0A

Information about Frank Church Wilderness Baldy Creek Trail – http://www.ultimateidaho.com/sec3/extras/frankchurch.html

Jody Sedrick - Zenware

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