Catching Up With Clicknoise – Muni wi-fi, Symbian, Mobilists and GPS tracking

Hey there, just a base touch, with some sharing of things that have recently caught my attention.

First, in disappointing news, Portland’s free Wi-Fi network is getting shut off due to the failure of its ad support based revenue model. This doesn’t bode well for other urban wi-fi projects with similar potential plans in mind, but perhaps it could help them revise and improve their chances for longevity. Still, it’s a terrible pity to have to physically dismantle something that’s so inexpensive to maintain, especially considering the enormous public value of such a system. Why don’t civic governments get it? I am more than certain that taxpayers in Vancouver would agree with me that free municipal wi-fi is worth spending public money on. Perhaps something else holds cities and other governance layers back in the archaic “public-private partnership” mode of reading this issue?

There’s also some great news in mobile, which I’ve blogged about at Mobile Muse. Symbian’s opening up, Nokia/Motorola/Siemens handsets are set to adopt the same platform, and hooray! It’s (almost) like MIDI all over again! And to boot, coordinating user-centered tech development for mobiles (my day job) is going to get a lot easier to manage.

Also – a quick shout out to my friend Igor Faletski, whose post “Convergence or cooperation” made it into last week’s Carnival of the Mobilists. Awesome stuff, Igor (and I notice they’ve started geotagging their contributors on a Google Map, which is very timely and cool).

One last thing before I go – I’ve been experimenting further with Nokia Sportstracker Beta, and I am gearing up for another post about it, due to popular demand – I’m getting tons of hits from searchers using related keywords, so obviously this research is useful to a number of people out there. Glad to be of service!

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