[maemo-users] Nokia device usage

From: Mark wolfmane at gmail.com
Date: Fri Mar 6 19:22:29 EET 2009
On Fri, Mar 6, 2009 at 9:56 AM, Andrew Flegg <andrew at bleb.org> wrote:
> I'm trying to turn a flaming trollfest into something more
> constructive. Instead of calling me names, can you actually respond to
> my question: what has Nokia advertised that you can do on the device,
> that you can only do by opening X Terminal, fiddling with
> configuration files etc?
> The device may be well suited to hackers, but - as far as I can tell -
> it meets its stated goals adequately without having to resort to such
> things. A number of times in this thread, people have said "you have
> to be a hacker to do anything with it and Nokia don't advertise that".
> What did Nokia advertise that you've got to be a hacker to do?
> Cheers,
> Andrew

1) It can't navigate out of the box. You have to pay a seriously
prohibitive fee for a limited-time subscription to get that
functionality, but even then the maps are ancient and the
functionality is primitive compared to dedicated GPS receivers (many
of which can also do lots of non-GPS functions better than the
tablets...) and pretty much any commercial map/navigation software.
Delorme's TopoUSA is only $99, has all the navigation features, much
more up-to-date street data (plus - admittedly limited - free updates
and specialty map downloads), loads of other features, and no time
limitation. If you don't need/want topo, you can get just the street
version for $50, which includes a free version for mobile devices.
Other street navigation apps sell for $35-$50 as well. None of the
installable apps do native routing, and all have some significant
limitations. Even the command line won't help you here.

2) It *does" email, but in a very limited fashion that doesn't work
for me. I do all my email online or in SSH, which has nothing to do
with the device's advertised capability. The command line won't help
you here, either.

3) The webcam is a selling point, but is practically useless out of
the box. You have to install apps in order to take still photos or
videos (and those weren't even available until the middle of 2008),
and videoconferencing is out of the question unless the other party
also has a tablet. No help in the command line.

4) The contacts applet as shipped is useless for anything but phone
numbers and email addresses. There's no way to add street addresses or
other important information. Not even the command line can help you
with this one. Even the installable apps have serious import/export
issues. Command line tools might help here, but I don't have the
expertise necessary.

5) Media support - an advertised point - is very limited out of the
box. Even if you install an app that supports the necessary codecs,
converting video with good results requires lots of trial and error.

6) Other Internet usage requires a great deal of command-line
expertise and additional installs. After all, they are "Internet
Tablets", right? That implies they are good - out of the box - with
all kinds of Internet applications, not just the Web. Otherwise, they
should be named "Web Tablets".

Shall I go on?


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