Ok, this is sample photo from 6630 from the dinner. It is clear that cameraphones are getting better, yet it is easy to find problems with the sharpness and colours.
Since yesterday, I have been trying out Nokia 6630, which has now replaced my worrisome Vodafone mobile data card. As far as I can tell, it turns out that my Thinkpad T43 uses a version of bluetooth stack that is not supported by Nokia PC Suite (a Broadcom one), so a USB cable is the only option for getting online; that seems to do it. But the phone itself seems to work fine. The camera resolution is 1,3 megapixels which is much better than the VGA of my old 6600, but way behind the 2 or 3 megapixels that the latest multimedia models are packing. But the OS is reacting fast, screen is clear and I like the touch of the keyboard. As the Nokia N series still has various baby illnesses, and E series delayed until summer, this model appears to be a nice compromise if mobile data is mostly what you are looking in a phone right now. The new HSDPA models are not far in the future also, and obviously we need a new communicator model with 3G/3,5G connection speeds. Until then, I will ride with this 6630. (Coming in from a bicycle trip, it just automatically transferred all shots via bluetooth to a date-format folder in my laptop, perfect! Now, if it only could use that bluetooth for a PC modem connection, too.)
I visited Leinola school in Wednesday evening, speaking in a Media Education panel. Finns tend to be rather liberal and open-minded in international comparison, and this was also rather civilized event. I talked about need of parents to 1) pay attention to games, 2) to listen their children in order to understand both them and their relation to games, and, 3) join games themselves, to bridge the digital divide, and to enjoy some free time. Media fasting was also discussed; my point was that it is demeaning our lives and anything of value in media culture to bury ourselves in media indiscriminately — it might be wise sometimes to switch off all media from our lives for a few days. Might try that even myself. Sun, outdoors, what a combination.
Everyone is usually so cheerful about the coming spring that very few get nostalgic about the ice melting and snow going away. I like summer, but actually it is the transitions I like best — the movement from one state to another. “Liminality” is a nice catch-all-phrase, but I wonder can we really pin it down so easily. In the cultural and religious history fields, one can point towards change of seasons being the symbolic and concrete moment when we see in action the change where our lives are fundamentally just one part. In media studies it is not so typical to think along these lines, and in science and technology studies almost certainly not. But I would like to see us taking more seriously our urge to create multiple layers of reality, all on the top of each other, and ask what is so inherently enjoyable finally in these transitions, overlays, and complexities related to them.
Today there was the first PhD seminar in the Department of Information Studies to discuss the thesis project of J. Tuomas Harviainen. With Markus Montola’s work already on the way to the Media Culture, there is interesting research into role-playing in the works. It is just a shame we do not have Game Studies or even Hypermedia (New Media Studies) established subjects that one could do a BA/MA or PhD in our university. In practice it means that I am volunteering or working as a “hired consultant” then to these other departments when supervising game related theses like these. Working title of J. Tuomas’s work: Information Seeking Patterns in Pseudo-autonomous Temporary Realities.
Studying the Google Calendar again, I did found a way to import Outlook meeting data into it, from a tip from a Google Calendar Help forum. It seems you need to change your Windows XP system language into US English before doing the Outlook data export, to get date format right for Google Calendar. Well, there still seems to be various kinds of bugs in it, but the idea of having an easy way to share calendars is of course nice. Now, if this would only really work… 😦
Flocks of birds; cold country. I got now some of the photos shot during the Easter into Flickr and a bit more into my own archive: