Summer of Code — Phase 1, complete

A few minutes ago, the official rankings were closed for the PSF-mentored projects for the Google Summer of Code. I don’t know yet how many slots the PSF will get, but we had enough “appropriate” mentors for 19 projects that we felt quite good about. It was both hard and easy to triage 300+ applications. Easy because some applicants clearly didn’t think very hard (or care, it seems). Hard because no matter how much people put in the application process, and how good the applications were, we were limited by the number of mentors available, the time available to do the ranking, and some technical issues. Still, I’m quite looking forward to seeing how this group of clearly motivated, bright students do over the summer — and, how well the mentorship process goes. It’ll be a first for all of us.

IBM and Apple

I’ve been playing around on a beautiful Powerbook and falling a little bit in love, so I went to the Apple store to find out what the damage would be. Check out what happens if you mistype!

Everyone’s talking about the relationships between Intel and Apple, Apple and Sun, IBM and Sun. It seems clear from the above that IBM has eyes on Apple!

The cellphone industry is broken

I need a new work cell phone (or “sellephone”, as the kids say). My carrier at work (Telus) doesn’t have any of the phones I want (Nokia Series 60), and I can’t find any useful information from sites that review cellphones on any of the phones it carries. That is a marketplace in need of some serious simplification. I won’t even go into the acronyms, incompatible standards, locale-restricted capabilities, etc.

I’ll almost certainly end up going cheap (thereby depriving someone of more margin) because I can’t trust the recommendations of peers, journalists etc. towards a particular phone, because phones have a shelf-life of 2 weeks, so reviews are obsolete before they’re published.

We don’t need twelve thousand models of phones. We really don’t.

Lazyweb, any suggestions? (For a phone, I mean — the “obvious” suggestion for fixing the industry is to combine VOIP, WLANs and a manufacturer with their head screwed on straight and provide Saturn/ING Direct type “simple” plans. Maybe can’t happen for regulatory reasons, but it should.).