BlackBerry 10 Jam Conference sessions hint at BB10 UI, App Integration, App Embedding

The BlackBerry 10 Jam Conference is coming up at the beginning of May and a some of the sessions arenow listed online. The descriptions of the sessions reveal some exciting features that will be coming in theBlackBerry 10 operating system.

DEV105 – “New UI Components for BlackBerry 10”
This session indicates we should expect a user interface quite different to both the PlayBook and current BlackBerry 7 devices. The interface of the PlayBook was a big departure from the typical BlackBerry interface and the majority of it was not even designed by TAT. BlackBerry 10’s interface is said to “combine the visual and interaction design skills of TAT with the smartness and and efficiency of classic BlackBerry UI”.

DEV117 – “BlackBerry 10 Flow and Invocation Framework”
One of BlackBerry’s strengths has always been tight integration between apps. Unfortunately RIM did not have time to enable this level of integration on the PlayBook when it launched, but has introduced it partially with the 2.0 PIM apps. BlackBerry 10 will take this to the next level with the “Invocation Framework” and a feature called ForeignWindow.

“The Invocation Framework in the BlackBerry® 10 platform is designed to allow one app to integrate with another, while also keeping the flow absolutely seamless and natural to the user. See how you can invoke an app with your content and carry out an action while also including an embeddable view of another app inside yours”

This ForeignWindow feature will allow apps to embed parts of other apps within them, to enable integration without ever switching apps. The framework will also take advantage of BlackBerry’s multitasking strength for switching seamlessly between apps while performing tasks or sharing content. This “BlackBerry 10 Flow” is going to be a feature that will really showcase the power on the QNX operating system and the BlackBerry Platform.

DEV129 – “How We Built BBM Using the BlackBerry 10 platform and Cascades”
Obviously BBM will be coming to BlackBerry 10, but this sessions confirms this and even goes into how the BBM team at RIM Built it for the new platform.

This is just a few of the sessions that RIM has in store for BlackBerry 10 Jam. I personally can’t wait to see what else they have in store, and how the BlackBerry 10 Dev Alpha devices work.

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Financial Post’s Bloomberg headline on RIM

The Financial Post regularly republishes Bloomberg news articles on their website. For some reason they deem it necessary to change the headline. In this case, where Bloomberg has a positive story about RIM with a positive headline, Financial Post finds the single negative line in the article and uses it as the headline.

Bloomberg: BlackBerry Fans Cite Reliability as They Snub Competitors

Financial Post: BlackBerry fans fret about their phone’s future

The article goes on to quote several BlackBerry users, all of which are praising the devices and explaining how much they like them.

“As long as I stay involved in this type of job, I’ll need a BlackBerry,” said John Yester, who has been a firefighter outside of Pittsburgh for the past 15 years.

“I’m able to keep in contact faster with clients, and we can actually have real conversation,” said Berry

In Venezuela, where the device is ubiquitous on the streets of Caracas, President Chavez has dubbed his BlackBerry and Twitter account his “secret weapon.”

I wonder why Financial Post had to turn the headline negative?

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Ottawa International Car Show

This past weekend I attended the Ottawa International Auto Show. It was interesting event, especially since I just purchased a new 2012 Mazda 3 last week (pictured above!).

What surprised me about the event was the lack of live demonstrations of in-car technology. Car manufacturers are often promoting their vehicles with fancy infotainment systems, GPS integrations, video cameras, and even the ability to automate parallel parking. But for some reason the companies showing their wares at this event did not bother making a show of these features.

I am skeptical of Ford’s self-parking cars, even though I am told it is not a marketing scam, and would loved to have seen a live demonstration of this technology at the show. When I tested my Mazda 3 at the dealership one of the most exciting features for me what the bluetooth integration to connect my BlackBerry smartphone and tablet to the car for music streaming, GPS navigation, and hands-free voice activated calling. This is pretty basic compared to some of the amazing systems in higher end cars these days, and yet they were not going out of their way to promote these features at the Auto Show. I know not everyone is as enamoured by technology as I am, but I bet a demonstration of a car parking itself would have drawn a crowd.

It is too bad QNX wasn’t at the show demonstrating their latest in-car technology integration:

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Canadian Business Magazine: Digital Freedom? Not quite…

Here is a funny ad from Canadian Business offering “Digital Freedom”


How is it “digital freedom” if I can only get the digital version of my Canadian Business Magazine subscription on an iPad? Where’s the version for my BlackBerry PlayBook or Galaxy Nexus? That would be digital freedom, not support for a single device.

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Many Notes for BlackBerry PlayBook now available on App World

My new PlayBook app has just been released on BlackBerry App World. Introducing Many Notes, a fun and powerful note pad application. Check it out on App World here:

App Description

Many Notes is the fun, flexible, and powerful app for making and storing notes. Enables quick note taking and a visual way to organize your notes. A beautiful hybrid of a classic notes application and the flexibility of real sticky notes.

– Auto-save & Fast Entry
– Drag & Drop organization
– Copy & Paste
– Predictive-text & Spellcheck
– Portait & Landscape
– Expansive canvas
– Add & Delete notes
– Make notes wider and longer
– No titles, tagging, manual saving, or anything else to slow you down!

More features are planned in future updates. Get it on App World:

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It’s coming… Many Notes for BlackBerry PlayBook

It is taking RIM a little longer to approve my new PlayBook app than first anticipated. They got swamped with submissions leading up to the PlayBook 2.0 launch. Here is a fresh teaser shot of my new app, Many Notes!

I have designed Many Notes to be the perfect note taking companion to the new PlayBook OS 2.0 productivity apps. It is a hybrid between a traditional (boring!) note pad app with the fun and power of sticky notes.

I expect RIM will approve the app for App World by the end of the week, so keep an eye out for it!

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PlayBook App Two: submitted!

I made my first PlayBook app, Temp Notes, back before the PlayBook was released. It has had more downloads than I had expected, but I have always intended to follow it up with more… functional apps.

The time has finally come, my second PlayBook app is done, tested, and submitted to App World! It was not the app I intended to do next, but a time crunch and some difficulty implementing Twitter’s OAuth login led to a change of course.

My new app Many Notes is the perfect follow up to Temp Notes. I’ll hold off revealing what the app is all about for when RIM approves it for sale on App World.

While I wait for Many Notes to be approved on App World I am going to keep working on the other PlayBook app ideas I have. Many Notes and my future apps have been made possible thanks to Codecademy and Nettuts+. I have been learning JavaScript, JQuery, and some new HTML5 thanks to these two great websites, all of which make it extremely easy to write PlayBook apps using BlackBerry WebWorks.

Hopefully by Monday I’ll be announcing Many Notes’ availability on App World!

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CrackBerry Kevin: time to rename RIM to BlackBerry

Kevin from CrackBerry is saying now is the time for RIM to rename the company to BlackBerry.

Looking at some of their recent acquisitions and careers sites, it seems they are moving in that direction. A few examples



Jobs At BlackBerry

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Video from BlackBerry #BBMUglySweater Party

Back in December I took a quick drive down to New York City for a BlackBerry party with a few friends. Turns out RIM liked what we had to say at the party because we made it into the video recapping the night.

Even better than a trip down to New York or the new BlackBerry Bold 9900s that we picked up there, thanks to the party my girlfriend finally switched to a BlackBerry. I predict my monthly sent text messages to drop to zero now that she is on BBM.

Checkout my previous post about the BBM Party in NY and the BlackBerry Blog’s recap of the night. Also thanks to RIM’s Luke Reimer for interviewing us and the Edelman crew for putting together such a great contest/event.

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PlayBook app downloads by country

After reading Ebscer’s blog post about the majority of Pixelated’s downloads being from Canada, I was curious to know whether the same would be true for my app, Temp Notes.

Using the App World download reports, I found that my stats are similar to Ebscer’s, though with a smaller proportion of downloads in Canada.

32% of Temp Notes downloads were in Canada, 22% in the United States, 9% in Mexico, 6% in the UK, 2% in India, 2% in UAE, and 83 other countries each with less than 1% of downloads.

(based on 3327 downloads from App World)

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