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fountainhead777
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As of 3 months ago, I have a Motorola Droid also and I don't remember how I was able to live without it. My only concern with it is that once its usefulness is widely realized, that dude in the white house is going to put it on the list of "rights," right next to "the right to high speed internet."

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I'm too frugal most of the time to go out and buy one of these phones. I don't like being so connected all the time, so I just stick with my $25 boost mobile phone that I bought two years ago. Has anyone here used both, one of these Motorola's and an iPhone? I keep hearing that the droids are an iPhone killer.

Edited by RussK
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Could you elaborate?

Android is the flag ship OS of the OHA or Open Handset Alliance. The OHA consist of over sixty different companies each contributing to the design.

There is also no quality control for the android or its apps. Its ripe for viruses and security flaws. Here is a article from today's Wall Street Journal about the security flaws: Dark Side Arises for Phone Apps

Unlike Apple or BlackBerry maker Research In Motion Ltd., Google doesn't have employees dedicated to vetting applications submitted to its Android store. Google said it removes apps that violate its policies, but largely relies on users to alert it to bad software.
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Android's open source nature allows a level of freedom that mobile platforms have never facilitated before - both on the level of the consumer and the developer/designer.

The Android platform itself is quite secure, and the security risks posed in the WSJ article can easily be avoided by not being an ignorant, uninformed user.

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The Android platform itself is quite secure, and the security risks posed in the WSJ article can easily be avoided by not being an ignorant, uninformed user.

Is it easy to become educated and informed, if one is not already, or does it require a more than negligible investment of time and effort?

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Android's open source nature allows a level of freedom that mobile platforms have never facilitated before - both on the level of the consumer and the developer/designer.

The Android platform itself is quite secure, and the security risks posed in the WSJ article can easily be avoided by not being an ignorant, uninformed user.

The open source freedom you hint at doesn't work. That's why Linux isn't popular. Nothing designed by multiple teams and committees can compete with an individual goal and idea. Perhaps the next Android phone should be called "The Courtland".

Also I don't think its unreasonable for a consumer to demand that a product work seamlessly out of the box without having to worry about defects or security.

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I have had my phone a week and there hasn't been one issue. I know guys who had their phones for months and not a single issue. Regardless of how it was made it works and works better or as well as other phone OS's. And here's a newsflash all OS's are made by groups. They're divided into parts and made piecemeal then patched together and worked with to be better. That is the reason Microsoft made a mediocre performance with vista is because they do that more than anyone. This is the same as any because while the OS was owned by the OHA it was actually created by Android, Inc. and some of google.

As for apps its real easy to tell which ones are safe because of capitalism. The entire marketplace is sorted by popularity and use and the majority of apps are created by companies you already know, ie the WSJ. It is never hard to pick out false apps if you have common sense; just check their website and get your application from known sources you already trust instead of shady ones. The WSJ arcticle asserts the apps are less safe because they are not checked before they are put up but they still register every single purchase so they can keep track of a false application.

Finally There is nothing wrong with Open Source, every other product google has created is free, gmail, google docs, google calendar, google chrome, google itself. They all work well and are user friendly and useful. Linux isn't used despite being open source because its complexity is too much for most users and the price of another OS is worth the saved time.

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I have had my phone a week and there hasn't been one issue. I know guys who had their phones for months and not a single issue. Regardless of how it was made it works and works better or as well as other phone OS's. And here's a newsflash all OS's are made by groups. They're divided into parts and made piecemeal then patched together and worked with to be better. That is the reason Microsoft made a mediocre performance with vista is because they do that more than anyone. This is the same as any because while the OS was owned by the OHA it was actually created by Android, Inc. and some of google.

As for apps its real easy to tell which ones are safe because of capitalism. The entire marketplace is sorted by popularity and use and the majority of apps are created by companies you already know, ie the WSJ. It is never hard to pick out false apps if you have common sense; just check their website and get your application from known sources you already trust instead of shady ones. The WSJ arcticle asserts the apps are less safe because they are not checked before they are put up but they still register every single purchase so they can keep track of a false application.

Finally There is nothing wrong with Open Source, every other product google has created is free, gmail, google docs, google calendar, google chrome, google itself. They all work well and are user friendly and useful. Linux isn't used despite being open source because its complexity is too much for most users and the price of another OS is worth the saved time.

It still lacks the cohesion of a single goal. Too many hands in the pot as it were, all with different goals, values, and objectives.

One of my favorite stories of the iphone is when the development team at Apple gave Steve Jobs the first iphone prototype. After inspecting it he proclaimed " I just can't talk myself into loving it" he then promptly told them to start over from the beginning. This is the kind of vision and oversight that Android lacks. There may be a team of engineers working out the details but at the end of the day they still take their marching orders from the vision and objectives of a single architect who has a master plan. No alliance or committee can ever match that.

Edited by Rearden_Steel
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It still lacks the cohesion of a single goal. Too many hands in the pot as it were, all with different goals, values, and objectives.

The Android has a single goal. The goal was to make a portable Linux-based OS that could be utilized by multiple entities on multiple platforms, with a variety of developer and user input possibilities.

The open source freedom you hint at doesn't work. That's why Linux isn't popular. Nothing designed by multiple teams and committees can compete with an individual goal and idea. Perhaps the next Android phone should be called "The Courtland".

Also I don't think its unreasonable for a consumer to demand that a product work seamlessly out of the box without having to worry about defects or security.

Open source does work, which is why the BSD-based Mac OSX commands about 5% of the market share for workstation use, and why Linux runs on ~15% of the world's servers. The popularity of other products, like Java, OpenOffice, and Firefox, should also be indicative of the open source license's ability to facilitate excellent software (and hardware) development.

Linux really isn't meant to be popular. It's meant to be versatile. With that versatility comes portability. This is what makes Linux highly desirable for mobile devices. To be able to build the OS on multiple platforms while ensuring a high level of cross-compatibility means that device manufacturers need not concern themselves with hardware and software requirements that binary-based OSes like Windows and Windows CE force on us, meaning hardware innovation potential is higher, while costs are lower.

It's absolutely not unreasonable for a consumer to demand that a product work seamlessly out of the box. But when that user then goes and buys faulty or dangerous applications for their device, that's (for very obvious and legitimate reasons) outside the realm of the device manufacturer's (and Google's) responsibility.

Is it easy to become educated and informed, if one is not already, or does it require a more than negligible investment of time and effort?

As Mr. fountainhead777 pointed out, it is more a question of common sense than anything else. The average user will have no difficulty discerning a trustworthy app from a dangerous one, and capitalism does play a large role in regulating the Android Market.

Edited by Andrew Grathwohl
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  • 3 months later...

The open source freedom you hint at doesn't work. That's why Linux isn't popular. Nothing designed by multiple teams and committees can compete with an individual goal and idea. Perhaps the next Android phone should be called "The Courtland".

Also I don't think its unreasonable for a consumer to demand that a product work seamlessly out of the box without having to worry about defects or security.

Linux isn't popular because, in addition to reasons mentioned above, it's not compatible with popular software. That's partly because some of the high-demand software is licensed and so it would be illegal for the Linux creators to produce and distribute the OS with that kind of software--most notably, to my mind, is software that plays most DVDs, and also Photoshop. However, at least in the former case, most Linux users just find illegal software that plays DVDs. Problems like the lack of Photoshop are more serious, and I imagine the reason there isn't a popular illegal version (that I know of) is that it's hard to reproduce that kind of sophistication. But given enough time, I see no reason why the Linux community couldn't produce comparable software, in light of the fact that they have the most efficient and secure OS that's popularly available.

Let's also just note that market popularity isn't a mark of a good product. How many people own Caterpillar dump trucks? Far fewer than those who own a Dodge, I'm sure. Does that mean Dodge trucks are superior? No, they're just targeted to a different market. Windows targets the market that generally doesn't know or care a whole lot about the details of technology, which is not a bad thing. Linux targets people who are more tech savvy. Also, let's note that Atlas Shrugged isn't on the top of the best-sellers list, either.

There are some highly suspect trends in the philosophy of open-source software, but that doesn't mean that all open-source software must be associated with that philosophy. There's nothing wrong with contributing freely to a community, if the fostering of the community is rewarding. Everybody who posts on this forum recognizes that.

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Until now,I have taken the cheap and basic route with cell phones. At least, as cheap as you can get in Canada, the land of expensive and noncompetitive mobile phone providers. My wife and I both use ancient (2006) LG flip phones operating on a pay-as-you-go basis with Virgin Mobile. We have never used iPhone or Blackberry or any other sort of smartphone. I am sure that I would be blown away by the capabilities of any of these little marvels. I have been watching the market progress, from Blackberry dominance to iPhone supremacy. It seems to me that the Android phones have finally provided competition to the iPhone line, and that Apple's design focus leads it to some rather dogmatic decisions like not having a memory card slot, or not supporting Adobe Flash. As cool as the iPhone is, I must admit I bristle a bit at the thought of buying one and joining the "iPhone club."

I am not sure if I am finally ready to take the plunge and buy a smartphone. I suppose I am a bit of a cheapskate and can't really get excited about a cellphone. But the Androids have made my potential choices a lot more interesting!

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I've had an HTC Evo for a month and love the capabilities (I'm poking/typing on it now) and the giant screen. Previously, I owned a Palm Pre.

The Evo is just like owning a PC in that it will do everything, you just have to figure it out for yourself. The Pre knew what you wanted before you did, but there were so very few apps available with no signs of improving, and it came with internet-related shortcomings.

All said, I'm now on the smartphone boat with my eye on the tablet ship.

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Problems like the lack of Photoshop are more serious, and I imagine the reason there isn't a popular illegal version (that I know of) is that it's hard to reproduce that kind of sophistication. But given enough time, I see no reason why the Linux community couldn't produce comparable software, in light of the fact that they have the most efficient and secure OS that's popularly available.

The GIMP ('GNU Image Manipulation Program') is a pretty sophisticated image manipulation program. I'm not a graphic artist so I can't comment on whether it has all the features required of a fully professional image editor, but from my layman's point of view it does anything I can imagine needing to do and more. There's also a version for Windows.

Linux targets people who are more tech savvy.

I'm a professional software developer -- ergo, tech savvy -- and I use Linux as my standard work environment both at home and in the office. I've used Linux, Solaris (on Sparc and x86), MacOS and Windows at various points in my career, and my experience has been that I'm most productive using Linux.

Also, let's note that Atlas Shrugged isn't on the top of the best-sellers list, either.

I think they don't consider the sales of books once they've been on the market for more that a certain period. It's possible that a new book with the sales numbers of Atlas Shrugged would be on the best-seller list.

There are some highly suspect trends in the philosophy of open-source software, but that doesn't mean that all open-source software must be associated with that philosophy. There's nothing wrong with contributing freely to a community, if the fostering of the community is rewarding. Everybody who posts on this forum recognizes that.

Very true. The two ideological poles are the 'Free Software' movement of Richard Stallman (bad) and the 'Open Source' movement of Eric S. Raymond (better). Don't confuse the two.

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I think they don't consider the sales of books once they've been on the market for more that a certain period. It's possible that a new book with the sales numbers of Atlas Shrugged would be on the best-seller list.

I doubt it for a couple of reasons. One, it wouldn't make sense for that to be the way they organize the best-sellers. The idea of the best-seller list is to encourage book sales by making consumers aware of what everyone else is reading, so that they feel like they can talk to other readers. I can't imagine a good reason for eliminating a classic from that list. Also, I once worked in a bookstore and remembered seeing some best-sellers stay on the shelf for more than a year, so I'd have to wonder when that cut-off period would be.

Now it's true that the best-seller list measures sales within the last week, and while Atlas Shrugged has been selling steadily for decades. So some Janet Evanovich book, which lasts three weeks on the best-seller if she's really done a good job, isn't going to out-sell Atlas over the course of the next 50 years. But is that really the way to quantify sales? Wouldn't things like the Bible and A Tale of Two Cities win that competition? And also, if we're talking about what's winning in the market today, the weekly best-sellers seems more appropriate.

Very true. The two ideological poles are the 'Free Software' movement of Richard Stallman (bad) and the 'Open Source' movement of Eric S. Raymond (better). Don't confuse the two.

Never knew there was a difference.

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Never knew there was a difference [between Stallman's "Free Software" and Raymond's "Open Source" movements].

Oh yes, definitely. Stallman's position is basically that property rights do not apply to software because its duplication costs are trivial. On his view, property rights are a socially-convenient mechanism for adjudicating competing claims to scarce resources. Physical objects like toothbrushes are scarce in that only one of us can use them at a time. If I take the toothbrush, you can't have it, and vice versa, so we need some way to figure out which one of us gets it. Software and digital media aren't like that. If you have Photoshop, and I make a copy, you still have yours. It isn't scarce in the relevant sense -- there is no need to adjudicate access because we can both have it, ergo no need for property rights. On this line of thinking if I have a piece of digital media and I refuse to let you copy it, I'm guilty of 'software hoarding'.

This view of property rights is false and its consequences are pernicious. At OCON2010 GMU law professor Adam Mossoff traced this theory back to Bentham and the utilitarians and connected it to a variety of modern attacks on the very concept of intellectual property.

Eric Raymond's justification for "Open Source" is much more pragmatic. In effect he argues that for certain kinds of software all parties benefit from releasing their source code to the public. It's just a different model for creating value in the software industry. If an individual developer judges that his interests are best served by opening his source code, or by contributing to an open source project, then he should do so. If not, not. Open source is entirely compatible with egoism, as long as you understand that not all value trades are binary or monetary.

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  • 3 weeks later...

I have the G1 which I believe was the original android phone (came out in nov. 2008). My contract expires in two months and I will be purchasing the G2 unless I discover a better alternative. Since I found the amount of space provided for apps and games on the G1 to be very small, I rooted my phone so that I could store them on my SD card. All of the options that rooting opens up is what I love about Android.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Just got the G2. The internet is extremely fast compared to the G1. Battery Life is about the same. Much better screen resolution and camera. Faster processor. I'm currently not planning on rooting it but my attitude will probably change in the future.

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I don't think Stallman's 'Free Software' means free as in zero-cost, it means free as in 'liberated.'

Basically he thinks users should demand more control over software they install on their computers. We should only buy programs where the source-code can be examined and then altered to our satisfaction. By letting proprietary licences lock us out of the contents of our own computers, we're handing over part of our liberty to corporations (apparently).

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