A Thing of Beauty

Given the diversity (and temperament) of the customers we serve, I don’t normally do product plugs. But having just used (not just installed – I said used) Google Maps on my new Blackberry Pearl mobile handset, I have only one thing to say.

The grace with which it works comes close to a religious experience.


Filed under General

21 responses to “A Thing of Beauty

  1. God I know.. It’s not really about the food / smart people / etc. It’s the idea that someone would let you sit there and perfect something as much as they seem to be able to on a lot of their apps. Green with envy doesn’t even come close.. :/

  2. Peter

    It would seem now that handheld devices are becoming considerably more powerful, the need to tie oneself to a desk & PC is diminishing. Could it be that the usefullness & useablity of handhelds can displace PC’s?
    Can’t wait for roll out screens, or some other solution to provide more screen realestate for ultraportables / handhelds 🙂

  3. mika

    Very well said, sir! Very well said!

  4. Jay Edwards

    It is one of the most smoothly useful pieces of software I’ve ever had the pleasure to use.

  5. Tim Bradshaw

    There is a lesson in google maps for Sun, I think. Google maps is a really good example of a service provided over the net to people. And it’s good mostly not because it’s clever but because it actually works: they can get the data to you fast enough for it to be usable, and they can do it all the time. Google are really good at network services.
    Now look at a couple of services Sun provide: sunsolve and docs.sun.com. I probably don’t need to tell you the problems with them (if I do, then the first hit for “tim bradshaw sunsolve” on google will give you some idea of just some of the problems). These things suck, frankly.
    Now, of course, Sun are not in the business of public-facing network services the way google are. But my guess is that you would quite like to be selling stuff to people who are in that business. One of the ways they decide whether to buy Sun’s kit/software/services is how well Sun can do this stuff. And the answer at present is “not very well”.
    Of course, the reason for the grottiness is not anything to do with Solaris, or Sun kit: only a fool would think that. But, well, there are lots of fools. And even for the non-fools, Sun’s inability to deliver this stuff does not bode well for their ability to understand and support what their customers are trying to achieve.
    I think you need to make these things work better. I know it’s not as easy as it looks (I’ve worked for large e-commerce places and watched the horror from the inside), but it’s not *that* hard, and there’s a lot of experience doing this stuff out there by now.

  6. Mobile Electronic medical records ( now with Adsense ) and mPayment. Now if we can just tackle the real time adjudication of medical invoices. Oh wait, SUN’s helping on that…

  7. Jim H

    Well, I’m sitting on a Solaris X86 box and I can’t surf http://www.blackberrypearl.com/. No flash 8 for Solaris. What is up with that. My Solaris Desktop says it is Adobe Flash enabled. Very Sad – I had to jump to a Windoze box to take a look… Very nice presentation by Black Berry. How well will it compete with the non java iPhone?

  8. Horray, enterprise mashup!

  9. an.

    To JimH : actually flash 8, and flash 9 are available for Solaris x86, check out http://labs.adobe.com/downloads/flashplayer9.html for flashplayer 9.

  10. Mark

    I had the same experience with Google Maps on my Treo. It is one of those rare “wow” moments of experiencing a product. I use it all the time. And the live traffic feature is awesome.

  11. Mark Edwards

    Google Maps is old news. Google Maps has been on the mobile device for a long time. Google is not all wise, either. It took them months to get Google Maps to interoperate with the Palm Treo despite this being one of the most obvious devices to support at the time of release.

  12. Zoltan Farkas

    Can you actually talk using the device?
    Voice quality on these devices used to be poor. Typically when you get a “smart phone” you end up with something that does a lot of things, bot not well.

  13. I wish we had cool Google toys like that here in the UK – we only get Gmail over here :o(

  14. Jonathan,

    as others have mentioned: Welcome to the Google Maps World: I have that on my Palm Treo 650 for more then five months now. And I still love it: Read more…

    It’s even supposed to run on nearly every Java Enabled Mobile Phone, just go to http://www.google.com/gmm/ from your webbrowser on your mobile phone, and install it directly from there. Very convenient!

    Still, I’m curious, are you using Push-Email on the Blackberry, or “Pull Email”, as we tend to use inside Sun (for security reasons!)? Or what was the reason to select the BlackBerry as the mobile device of choice?


  15. Jim H

    To an. Thanks for the flash 9 pointer for Solaris! Now we just need the latest acroreader for Solaris x86. Shouldn’t it be a recompile??

  16. numpty

    Give me a decent road atlas any day. I’ve blissfully survived the last 35 years without a PDA or a cellphone, and some fuzzy maps on a tiny screen sure aren’t going to change my mind.

  17. Will

    It would be religious experience for my sales reps and I if Sun could register deals, provide timely price quotes, reasonable reseller margins, and deliver product in a timely manner without having to touch 50 people inside Sun everytime the wind blows.
    Is someone going to ever fix this?

  18. WhatNeedsToBeDone

    To Will: Sounds like a familiar reseller lament. As a long time Sun customer I hear you. It used to be that Sun reps could hide the bureacracy from their customers. That’s no longer the case. It’s painfully obvious that the reps have to deal with a *lot* of internal roadblocks and it sounds to me like it’s just not Sun’s customers but its partners as well who get to see some part of that mess. I think it’s all being casued by Sun’s misguided selection of an Operations person to run sales instead of a seasoned sales manager. It seems that Sun is seriously lacking the true sales leader in the molds of Roebuck, Zander, and Pinto. I have a good relationship with my rep and his opinion is that sales leadership, especially in the US, is non-existent. I hope that Sun figures this one out sooner than later. They have products people want.

  19. Anonymous

    While you are happy about your new shiny gadget, I am very frustrated because Sun didn’t provide a laptop Solaris solution. I tried several laptops and my experience so far is not positive. Many of Unix guys have moved to Mac OS-X (this is a real story). Why couldn’t Sun provide a ready-to-go laptop solution? Maybe Sun doesn’t want to be compared with Apple’s OS-X.

  20. Antoine

    Google Map is avalaible in UK along with all the rest of good Google toys 😉

  21. Matt Linden

    I would like to add a little back ground about SunSolve in response to Tim Bradshaw’s comments about it. I have been associated with it in the past and I can tell you that it is not about talent or desire, but about priorities. I personally believe there is untapped potential there to serve our customers. I encourage anyone who has thoughts about SunSolve and other Service tools to provide that feedback to our VP of Service & Sales Donald Grantham (don.grantham@sun.com) or our Service Chief Technology Officer, Dan Berg at daniel.berg@sun.com.

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