2004: year of the mobile apps

As Russel [link gone] puts it: 2004 is the year of the mobile [applications]. (Okay, here in France, it might shift to 2005, but whatever...)

Of course, the two main markets here are:

  • mobile games (play while commuting...)
  • and mobile enterprise applications (sales forces empowerment/reporting...)
Well, it wouldn't make sense to develop mobile games on any other technology than J2ME since no other technology is as widely available on a variety of trendy phones... the ones the targeted audience will buy, or already has bought.

However, regarding enterprise applications, the equation is quite different. The targeted users often do not have a recent (smart)phone (they just don't care that much, as long as they can use their phone to call! :P) and even if they have: it doesn't matter! Actually, the cost of new phones with a specific technology will just be a fraction of the cost for the global distributed application. Therefore, Microsoft smartphones and Palm based smartphones are just as well positioned to be used for mobile enterprise applications! Actually, the advantage may go to the platform that provides the most efficient middleware/framework to speed up development!

Another question remains: while a color phone screen and a keypad are enough for playing games, we yet have to check what screen size and input method are appropriate to fill out forms. Maybe connected PDAs will prove more relevant... (just add a bluetooth headset for phone capabilities). Personally, I tend to think that smartphones with large screens (P900, Sendo X, 6600, SPV E200) will do the trick, but we really need a reality check here!

A journey into WiFi

I'm on a train right now (typing this into TextPad) and I'm sort of realizing that the WiFi ubiquity I have been experiencing for the past few weeks was actually an illusion! :-/

It all started last month when I bought a new laptop with built in WiFi. It's the kind of gadget you just can't leave unused, even if it's hidden deep inside the machine. You know it's there and you just gotta check it out.

I thought the cheapest way to give it a try was to buy an USB WiFi adapter and plug it into my desktop. So I went for a Netgear USB key and quickly set up an 'ad-hoc' network between my laptop and my desktop. (For the record, the laptop uses an Intel "centrino family" WiFi chip.)

The other way to go would have been to buy a standalone WiFi access point, maybe even one that's merged into an ADSL modem. This would be called 'infrastructure' mode. I thought ad-hoc and infrastructure were basically the same, except I would not have had to turn on the desktop to act as an internet router everytime I wanted to access the Internet from my laptop. So I decided I'd simply go the cheap way.

Well... I was wrong.

Read more »

Underrated PHP & SQL

I realized today that PHP's state of corporate underratedness is probably is similar to SQL's state of corporate underuse.

You could think it's because these technologies are not object oriented enough...

You could also think that they have been so widely misused that they got a bad reputation...

Well, actually I think the main reason is just marketing! There are corporations out there, spending millions to get the press to think (and write) that you need more complex architectures and data access schemes to get things right!

That is true sometimes... but I fear that more than 80% of the uses of things like object-to-relational mapping and other J2EE candies are just overkill... but of course, every manager thinks his project is the kind of project the press is talking about... And of course, contractors are going to give them what they ask for... as long as it pays better...

Funky world out there! :>>

b2evolution.net will be back shortly

Thanks to Travis [site gone] and Jason [site gone], b2evolution.net has found a new home... well two new homes actually! So once we're done with the set up, the site will be back to stay for good! ;)

Also, all the contents, especially from the Forums, will be back just as they left! B)

Thank you guys for your support! :D

Oh wait! Just got a third hosting offer! Hi Ben! This community really rocks! :yes:

Update: 3 a.m. everything is running again. Gonna get some sleep. See you other there...

SourceForge hosting

Some people suggested I consider hosting b2evolution.net on SourceForge. While I'd like to, their acceptable use policy is in several ways too restrictive, essentially here:

You may host a small demonstration site for your software, provided it is not resource-intensive, does not violate our Terms of Use agreement, and does not require outbound connectivity. Users should not be permitted to modify data in your demo site. You may use your project web space for software testing, so long as the testing is performed only by a small group of people (this is not an appropriate place to host a production test involving large groups).