February 9th, 2007


Fear my detective ability

A lifetime of reading murder mysteries, watching Veronica Mars and asking tricky questions at press conferences has not been wasted; at the murder mystery dinner last night I sat, like Hercules Poirot, exercising the little grey cells and sent Simon scurrying around as my Hastings (unlike Holmes, Poirot let his Watson do the legwork and ask the questions), caught the fairly hefty hint from the acting troupe and solved the mystery. Actually, almost everyone solved the mystery but our team had all the clues and evidence and I was asked to deliver the denoument! Apart from being utterly exhausted by that point, it was huge fun.

Spotting inconsistencies, evasions, uncertainties and other clues: all in a day's work for us technology journalists. Even better if there's a drink in it ;-)

WiMax or WiMesh?

Rumours of a ZunePhone are talking up the OFDM in the FCC filing as meaning Microsoft is going to do a WiMax device; while it would be nice, I'm not sure the chipsets, power consumption or the netowrks are there to make that a reality this year. Talking to Siemens, they expect the mobile WiMax services to hit the UK around 2008 and I;m not sure Sprint/Nextel will be much faster than that in the US.

And OFDM is a technique, not a standard. It's used in DSL, in some WiFi implementations - and in UWB. A wireless mesh - like the one Sonos ZonePlayers use to distribute music around your house - or a UWB connection between Zunes; those make more sense to me for social music.

Want to share tunes faster? Siemens has a class 1, 100 foot Bluetooth interface for pushing music over A2DP to five headsets at once...

Y'know what bugs me about blogs as sources? Blog A says they got it from site B, which says they got it from blog C, which might credit blog D. Blog E credits blog F - often not mentioning any of A-D. None of them have a link to the primary source - the FCC. I don't blame them - I can't find the application on the FCC site with both hands and a shovel. But this 'I'll mention what's cool that I saw' round robin makes it very hard to find out more. I linked to the blog where sbisson first saw this, which claims to have made (gasp) phone calls and checked stuff out; if they had an FCC link I'd really rate them...

Windows Mobile 6

I wasn't going to be talking about this in public until Monday, even though we saw it at CES, but thanks to La Tribune I dropped everything in the middle of a press event yesterday to write up the features of Windows Mobile 6 for IT Pro. I'm really looking forward to predictive dialling on the more powerful Windows Mobile devices, to HTML email and to searching my whole mailbox via Exchange 2007 (lucky sbisson gets to install Exchange 2007). I don't like that I still can't search the body of emails on the phone and I think Microsoft has looked too much at Symbian in some places. No CardSpace, no XML file formats for a while. But an update I'll want to get. Pretty please Mr Network Operator...