Cell phones become mobile

I’ve been waiting for tomorrow for a long time. The rest of the country has been waiting for tomorrow for a long time. And that time has finally arrived.

Wireless number portability is now here.

Canada is finally catching up with the rest of the world and unshackling phone numbers from phone companies. My number is mine alone, and I’ll be taking it wherever I want!

I’ve already decided to switch. I’ve been with Bell for a couple years now, and although the plan I’m on is pretty good, the reception is often deplorable.

When I’m sitting at my desk at the office, on the 17th floor of a 17-storey building surrounded by no other taller or as-tall buildings, I lose calls within a few seconds of answering them every time. So I’m anxious to try another provider to see if their towers are more advantageously located.

Tomorrow will mark a momentous day for consumers in Canada. It has been a long time coming.


Nortel completes latest restatement

Nortel released their 2005 financials Friday and completed more restatements of prior years’ results. The restatements related to revenue recognition and decreased revenues and net income because the revenue should’ve been booked in different periods.

Maybe this will mark a turning point for the Canadian communications equipment company and they can retain (or regain) their position as a market leader. The fact they released these disappointing results on a Friday afternoon is of course a little trick to reduce their media exposure. Not everyone is fooled!


Corporate intranets and their effects on productivity

A post by Jeffrey Veen talks about the typical corporate IT department and how it influences (negatively) external and internet web projects. The thrust of the post is that a centralized corporate IT department consists primarily of “technologists [more] accustomed to controlling resources and managing services” than user-centered design and the user experience.

I can relate to his findings in my own firm. We have a national intranet as well as an office intranet. The national one was recently updated and looks a bit sharper, although it still clings to using frames to lay out and organize content. More bells and whistles, but still no easier to find what you’re looking for unless you know where it is. In its defence, it has to serve a diverse national firm with large offices in the major urban centres like mine of nearly 100 and smaller offices in rural Canada of less than 10.

But the office intranet is something else. The color scheme is, in a word, hideous, and it makes liberal use of the marquee tag, and probably has looked the same for many years. It certainly looks very Web 1.0, as in Netscape Navigator 1.0. I’ve been toying with the idea of throwing the office intranet into something standards-compliant, use some CSS for the layout perhaps perform radical surgery on the information architecture. I think the standards argument would resonate with accountants.

Maybe once busy season is over.