Nokia is buying Trolltech

I think this is one of the greatest news of 2008: Nokia is buying Trolltech! Not only will it let Qt through some previously closed corporate doors, but also will introduce Qt and Qtopia to many more people on many more devices. Finally people will not be afraid that toolkit may belly-up one day.

What’s more I’m hoping that the next Internet Tablet OS will be based around QTopia 4.x which is much more appropriate then XServer + GTK.

Way to go for my favourite C++ GUI Toolkit and amazing Jambi. Now I wish Trolltech will acquire Riverbank Computing and make Python’s PyQt API bindings official and bundled by default. May be I’m dreaming….

New Home Phone Number

My home phone number starting today it has changed. I don’t want to publish it right here on publicly accessible blog, but if you e-mail me, I will immediately let you know.

So what did happen? Since 2004 I was a happy customer of FCI Broadband (Futureway Communications) a GTA’s local communications company. Last June I’ve got a happy letter from Rogers telling me that FCI Broadband is no more, they have bought it. But they claimed that I shall not worry – nothing is changing. Though I knew that “nothing is changing” is not for long, Rogers, like any other monopoly closes competing businesses fast, so that they do not compete with their main offerings. Fast forward to January 15th, 2008 and I got a letter from Rogers this time telling me that I have to switch to their “uber-cool” Rogers Home Phone (basically VoIP phone over cable) and I have to do it within next month or my phone is no more. I knew that this was the time to say “Good Bye” to Rogers. Now I have a VoIP phone from Netfone.ca. All features, free unlimited local calling, etc all for 9.95 + GST (no PST as they are in BC) (and you can transfer your existing phone number if it is in the area of their land-line switch – mine was not).

Voice quality seems to be fine, but now I have flexibility to call from anywhere, where there is a free WiFi using my Nokia N800 and its build-in SIP phone (I’ve tried and it works like charm).

Abandon monopolistic Bell and Rogers, switch to VoIP, there are a few choices in Canada.
http://www.netfone.ca/ (they are my current VoIP provider)
http://www.unlimitel.ca/ (they have an ugly website, but I’ve read they are quite good)
http://www.vbuzzer.com/ (very cheap and very popular in GTA)
http://www.gizmoproject.com/ (international, biggest Skype competitor, but Skype does not offer SkypeIn in Canada, otherwise they would have been my choice)
http://www.primustel.ca/ (a friend of mine is there, like it a lot, but it costs twice as Netfone.ca)

You can also order VoIP from Bell or Rogers, but then you will have to pay same old $40+ CDN + Taxes)

Btw, netfone.ca for GTA is routed through https://www.voipportal.ca/ so it might be the same quality as other providers that use this network.

One more thing.

Right now you can get a FREE 416 VoIP number for Life from http://www.freephoneline.ca only about 300 out of 5000 numbers are left. I’ve got mine, they have a Java based Soft Phone and you need to use computer to call, but hey it is FREE!

Final nail gets hammered into HD-DVD coffin

It seem that the final blow to HD-DVD is almost here, according to Financial Times it might come as a result of Paramount leaving HD-DVD only camp like the Warner Home Videos just did.

… Paramount, which is owned by Viacom, is understood to have a clause in its contract with the HD-DVD camp that would allow it to switch sides in the event of Warner backing Blu-ray, according to people familiar with the situation.

It is a bit sad that the war ends in such a way without concessions from the Blu-Ray camp like removing everybody hated region locking. I really thought that this was the thing of the past, apparently not. I also wanted somewhat more relaxed rights to copy movies (transcode on my own) for use in portable gadgets like my Nokia N800 without getting a DVD and putting it into DivX or MPEG 4 AVC/H.264. In addition to that I want SONY to relax license fees from the media producers like Ritek and CMC, so that they can drive of the blank media somewhat down.

Good bye HD-DVD, I did not think it would be over so soon.

HD War is Over – Official

Great news came just as I was thinking going home (from work).

The news is that Warner has joined Blu-Ray exclusive club. All of sudden my grief about not being able to buy HD-DVD player during the boxing day is gone. HD-DVD is dead, long live Blu-Ray. Now 70% of all movies will be released in Blu-Ray format exclusively. This will eventually lead to the HD-DVD camp studios to abandon that exclusive camp and join Blu-Ray group since nobody will have players for their HD-DVD stuff, except a few hundred thousand early adopters.Too bad so many folks spent their hard earned $$ on HD-DVD equipment…

Get PS3 for $369 from Dell while you still can! What a great device it is…