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PalmSource Installer v1.5 Released

PalmSource has released version 1.5 of thier PalmSource Installer developer tool. It is a significant update that address a number of key developer issues.

PalmSource Installer is a Palm OS application installation technology designed to streamline the online and over-the-air (OTA) download and install process of Palm OS applications onto Palm Powered smartphones and other wireless devices. As part of PalmSource’s effort to make software titles more easily accessible for end users, PalmSource Installer can minimize the complexities commonly associated with loading software by providing one-touch software download and install functionality for Palm Powered smart mobile devices.

PalmSource states, "Our goal is to make it possible for ALL Palm OS applications to be available over-the-air directly to users who may rarely (if ever) synchronize with a PC.  As developers, this should be your goal too.  This new Installer release is the next step towards realizing this vision." Some highlights of what is new:

  • Self-extracting EXE creation for simplified Windows install
  • Self-extracting PRC support for Macintosh/Linux installation fallback
  • "Universal" URL supports OTA and desktop from one link
  • "Universal" browser support: IE, Firefox, Mozilla, Netscape, Opera
  • Installation support for OS selection and Device ID selection (in addition to language and screen resolution)
  • Auto-Run of app after install
  • Simple documentation install (“Installed Packages” Directory)
  • Improved graphics/icons
  • Updated documentation and samples

This iteration of the Installer is very much ready for prime-time, and PalmSource intends to be announcing some significant partnerships at the DevCon around this. They will also be prominently featuring a showcase of applications that take advantage of the Installer, and which show off how easy OTA application install can be. 

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Finally!

The_Voice_of_Reason @ 4/22/2005 1:23:17 AM # Q
Too bad only about a dozen people will actually ever use these features. I hope the install routines don't leave any detritus on the PDAs, Windows-style. I think I'll keep using my three year old copy of PInstall and let braver souls be the guinea pigs this time. I've already given up my share of blood living on the cutting edge over the past 7 or 8 years...

And does anyone really buy software for Palms? Between freeware, included apps and warez it seems that developers must be having a he11 of a time trying to make a living. Personal "Thanks" goes out to the developers of DateBk5, Ultrasoft Money, LauncherX and HandyShopper. Your apps are a big reason why I'll never give up using my PalmsOS PDAs.


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Press release: CUPERTINO, California — February 11, 2005 — Apple® announced today that Steve Jobs will begin selling his own feces to Apple Cultists beginning March 1. Apple's new iPoo™ lineup is expected to easily surpass the iPod shuffle as the company's most popular product. Yes, Apple Cultists can already easily create their own iPoo™, but feces didn't seem cool until Jobs told them it was cool. Remember, kids: the ONLY cool feces is Jobs' highly individualistic, rebellious iPoo™ (coming soon in six different colors/flavors, including the red [hematochezia] and black [melena] U2 GI bleed model)

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Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.
------------------------

Say hello to my little friend...

RE: Finally!
skeezix @ 4/22/2005 10:55:07 AM # Q
(I might add it makes it harder on us when people go posting the name of patchers in a public forum for all to see :/)

jeff

The Shadow knows!

RE: Finally!
DevPOV @ 4/22/2005 12:01:33 PM # Q
I second that: Let's leave out the WaReZ AdZ. It doesn't help any developers and we all know what you're referring in the abstract.

RE: Finally!
budrowilson @ 4/22/2005 3:05:40 PM # Q
"Warez" is the term given to any patched program on any platform, therefore you cannot get upset with him for using that word choice. If the person reading the passage already knows of the site he'd be indirectly referring to (if in fact he was referring to the site at all), then you've already lost that person as a customer anyway if their morals include getting pay-for software for free. On the other hand, if the reader didn't know of that specific site, then he/she would just read it as "patched software" with no affiliation to a specific site.

RE: Finally!
skeezix @ 4/22/2005 3:39:58 PM # Q
The post was editted to remove the name of the software in question thankfully :)

To get back on topic: yes, you can make a living on software, but its very hard (especially in some genres.) Like any other small business its a lot of work (development, support, marketing, administration, accounting, ecommerce, etc) all day and night while everyone else comes home from work and relaxes... but at least you're proud as heck at your achievements :) Its quite a challenge due to the sheer variety of devices out there, thats for sure. Doing some software on the side is a good option for a lot of people .. keep it relaxed.

jeff

The Shadow knows!

Words on Warez. (Denial is not a solution.)
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 4/22/2005 9:23:41 PM # Q
skeezix @ 4/22/2005 10:55:07 AM

(I might add it makes it harder on us when people go posting the name of patchers in a public forum for all to see :/)

jeff

The Shadow knows!


RE: Finally!
DevPOV @ 4/22/2005 12:01:33 PM

I second that: Let's leave out the WaReZ AdZ. It doesn't help any developers and we all know what you're referring in the abstract.

Get serious. By now do you actually think anyone isn't aware how easy it is to "patch" PalmOS apps? It's likely that there is more warez on an average Palm than there are legitimately acquired apps. Mentioning the most effective patching app by name isn't going to suddenly change that. People who use warez will keep using warez and people who buy their apps will keep buying their apps.

Warez has always been Palm's Dirty Little Secret. I'm amazed that there are never serious discussion about how ridiculous it's been for Palm to boast about nurturing its fabled "Palm Economy" on the one hand but have such WEAK piracy protection for said developers on the other hand. Good old Aaron Ardiri should pop up now and say a few words about this subject which is so near and dear to his heart...

The developer community and Palm continue to keep their collective heads in the sand re: the piracy epidemic that has long since effectively killed off the fabled Palm Economy.

I would have expected a more intelligent response from you (of all people!), Jeff.

TVoR



------------------------
Press release: CUPERTINO, California — February 11, 2005 — Apple® announced today that Steve Jobs will begin selling his own feces to Apple Cultists beginning March 1. Apple's new iPoo™ lineup is expected to easily surpass the iPod shuffle as the company's most popular product. Yes, Apple Cultists can already easily create their own iPoo™, but feces didn't seem cool until Jobs told them it was cool. Remember, kids: the ONLY cool feces is Jobs' highly individualistic, rebellious iPoo™ (coming soon in six different colors/flavors, including the red [hematochezia] and black [melena] U2 GI bleed model)

------------------------
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.
------------------------

Say hello to my little friend...

RE: Finally!
budrowilson @ 4/23/2005 3:22:02 PM # Q
The only real argument here is, if you'd never shown Anakin the power of the dark side, he never would have converted. All you can do is hope that more Palm software customers are like Luke, and after seeing both sides, denies the call of the dark side.

Yoda says:
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 4/23/2005 6:29:10 PM # Q
Trying to remove freedom of choice and free will are you?

Stop warez by pretending it does not exist you will not.


------------------------
Press release: CUPERTINO, California — February 11, 2005 — Apple® announced today that Steve Jobs will begin selling his own feces to Apple Cultists beginning March 1. Apple's new iPoo™ lineup is expected to easily surpass the iPod shuffle as the company's most popular product. Yes, Apple Cultists can already easily create their own iPoo™, but feces didn't seem cool until Jobs told them it was cool. Remember, kids: the ONLY cool feces is Jobs' highly individualistic, rebellious iPoo™ (coming soon in six different colors/flavors, including the red [hematochezia] and black [melena] U2 GI bleed model)

------------------------
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.
------------------------

Say hello to my little friend...

RE: Finally!
skeezix @ 4/23/2005 6:35:00 PM # Q
TVoR --

There is a certain degree of piracy *of course*, but its certainly not the norm. Most people try and do the right thing just as most people don't go looking for warez. Natch, many people will use it if they stumble across it while others will seek it out.. such is life, and I don't see the need to debate piracy philosophy here :) However, obviously it doesn't help the developers to post the name of the patcher software here in public, so I don't see what you're going on about -- do you prefer it were left in the public? Did you need it? :P

The 'Palm Economy' for third parties .. the mailing lists for developers is still quite busy is it not? I don't see your point.. being negative for negative sake again? Bah!

jeff

The Shadow knows!

Don't be silly, Jeff.
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 4/23/2005 7:02:09 PM # Q
For some reason, there appears to be a greater-than-average aversion on the part of consumers to purchase PalmOS software. Partly because of the high quality and sheer number of freeware apps. People have grown to expect that every Palm app is free or ridiculously cheap - no matter how much use they may derive from the application in question.

Given the choice between paying a couple dollars for a well coded, well supported app and stealing it, I think most people would choose/are choosing stealing. That the Palm OS makes it so easy to steal almost EVERY decent commercial application out there compounds the problem tenfold. Pretend the problem doesn't exist and maybe it will go away. Good idea.

Not a damn thing has been done to improve PalmOS vulverability to piracy in the past 8 years. Pathetic. People with attitudes like yours don't help. I've had my share of differences with Aaron Ardiri in the past, but he's actually one of the only developers with the cojones to try and take on the PalmOS Piracy Problem. Developers should have biotch-slapped Palm into fixing the OS years ago.

My experience with warez has been for "educational" purposes. Like the Bad People say: "If you like the app, then buy it!"

The Palm Economy is moving from a Recession to a Depression. Feel free to pretend this isn't the case if it makes you feel better. There probably aren't more than 20 companies that have made any real $$$ from selling PalmOS apps. But then I'm sure you knew that already...

TVoR



------------------------
Press release: CUPERTINO, California — February 11, 2005 — Apple® announced today that Steve Jobs will begin selling his own feces to Apple Cultists beginning March 1. Apple's new iPoo™ lineup is expected to easily surpass the iPod shuffle as the company's most popular product. Yes, Apple Cultists can already easily create their own iPoo™, but feces didn't seem cool until Jobs told them it was cool. Remember, kids: the ONLY cool feces is Jobs' highly individualistic, rebellious iPoo™ (coming soon in six different colors/flavors, including the red [hematochezia] and black [melena] U2 GI bleed model)

------------------------
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.
------------------------

Say hello to my little friend...

RE: Finally!
skeezix @ 4/23/2005 8:10:38 PM # Q
You have me at the disadvantage.. you evidently know what I do, but I don't know if you develop in the mobile industry (be it Palm and/or Pocket PC and/or Symbian etc). I must admit it doesn't sound like you're a Palm OS developer working on a significant (large) application, though perhaps you dabble or do small apps or perhaps you do a big app... clear it up for us? (One thing to note is that while there are many high quality freeware apps such as Handyshopper etc, there are forty times that in terrible apps that are screwy or don't support all devices etc. It is both hard to find the good ones, and often in the specific genre a person is looking for there may be no good ones, free or otherwise. Mind you, things have changed alot the last few years, as the devices got more powerful .. 5 years ago there were some 20,000 apps, almost all terrible :) Course now its just a pain for all the devs to keep up with the variety of devices and uh, er, 'issues' :)

Obviously I do not ignore the issues of piracy or the rise and fall of the market (and if you think otherwise, you'd be very very wrong... you know how long I've been building mobile apps :) - I don't know why you are trying to drag such discussions into a *news post*.. feel free to email me or find an appropriate message board or blog if you'd like to gab it over.. as all know I'm chatty as heck :) Suffice to say that most developers try some rudimentary protection or another, and some of us even try more sophisticated approaches.. most of course just do enough to keep honest people honest, and let pirates do as they will. Furthermore, many have barely enough time after regular support and development and operating a business to continously deal with cracks. (The common thought since the very first shareware some 20+ years ago is that of course anything and everything will be cracked, but most people won't go looking for it. Most apps can be cracked with a single byte change, and there are automated apps to do this sort of thing with no knowledge...)

I don't see why you'd trying to aggravate me over the issue, with your implied slights (suggesting I know nothing of the market? I'm sure I know more about it that most people, obviously :) Feel free to talk openly or privately, but avoid the implied attacks.. we're all in this together.

jeff

The Shadow knows!

The Shadow knows Jack
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 4/23/2005 8:40:36 PM # Q
Don't be offended, Jeff - it looks like we'll have to agree to disagree on this one.

Sorry, I can't tell you who I am. Someday all may be revealed, leaving PIC readers slackjawed (and Mike Cane even-slackerjawed), but until that time I'll keep posting using my remailing software from a remote location unknown to mere mortals.

You're one of the best developers around, but some of your apps have helped foster the "Everything must be free" mentality pervasive in the Palm world. Yes, there's a lot of crap apps on the platform. Always has been. PDA Toolbox, anyone? But with HandyShopper as freeware and an incredible app like Datebk 5 selling for less than $25, there's no way for the average Joe developer to make a buck. What's a poor developer to do if someone makes it his Progect™ to code a professional quality piece of freeware? Some might redouble their efforts and make their app even better than before, catering to every ridiculous user request imaginable and add a slick desktop component to complete the package. Only to see their app patched a few minutes after it's uploaded to PalmGear. Life's a biotch. Then you die.™


------------------------
Press release: CUPERTINO, California — February 11, 2005 — Apple® announced today that Steve Jobs will begin selling his own feces to Apple Cultists beginning March 1. Apple's new iPoo™ lineup is expected to easily surpass the iPod shuffle as the company's most popular product. Yes, Apple Cultists can already easily create their own iPoo™, but feces didn't seem cool until Jobs told them it was cool. Remember, kids: the ONLY cool feces is Jobs' highly individualistic, rebellious iPoo™ (coming soon in six different colors/flavors, including the red [hematochezia] and black [melena] U2 GI bleed model)

------------------------
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.
------------------------

Say hello to my little friend...

RE: Finally!
skeezix @ 4/23/2005 9:23:28 PM # Q
Pricing is definately a problem; my prices have probably helped keep my competitions pricing down, since I've always aimed for keeping things very low and living on volume. Really, both of us should be jacking our prices way up to make a buck. (ie: The US dollar tanked, which cost us an enormous chunk of the profit on each sale; further, with stores raising their cut from 15% to 40-50% has really really hurt.. so we're making half as much per sale now as we did years ago.)

Really, the entire industry needs to raise its prices, but we've all teained the customers to expect great value and low prices. Yes, I've even contributed with low prices, plus all my freeware on the side for fun.

That is a tough one, but none of us see an easy solution of course :/

(And yes, most of the developers agree that its bloody tough to keep afloat in this industry and a lot of developers left or went under when the stores raised their cuts, and when the USD tanked, etc.. its been belt tightening of late, but we do okay :)

Now I am extra curious who you are; why not let me know, and I'll even sign an NDA and never reveal it ;) Have we met?

jeff

The Shadow knows!

RE: Finally!
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 4/23/2005 10:06:44 PM # Q
PalmGear makes me sick. Developers should have joined together LONG AGO to create a developer-friendly site to showcase software. It wouldn't take much effort to create a site that links back to a developer's site to process payment. Sites like eSellerate are an improvement, but that's not enough. For years I've advocated boycotting those sleazebags at PalmGear, but there aren't a lot of alternatives. Handango isn't much better and seems to be pushing other platforms a lot more these days.

At this stage, it's too late to raise prices. People have come to expect Palm apps to cost less than $30, so raising prices will only result in driving them to less expensive competitors or else even more use of warez (which users rationalize is "necessary" to combat "overpriced" software). You can't win. If you're in a narrow niche (like you) collusion with your competitor(s) might lead to you both being able to charge a better (reasonable) price, but your customers will get pi$$ed off in a hurry when prices go up. And then some 15 year old Russian wunderkind goes and code a better app than yours over his Christmas holidays and distributes it as freeware. Life is Hard.™

So much for the "Palm Economy"...

We haven't met, but I have a lot of respect for the amount of energy you've put into improving your apps (is CESD your role model? ;-O) over the years.

As Palm now knows, NDAs mean nothing in China, so I'll have to remain anonymous. At least until Geraldo Rivera and I do our story on PalmSource and Cobalt.

TVoR


------------------------
Press release: CUPERTINO, California — February 11, 2005 — Apple® announced today that Steve Jobs will begin selling his own feces to Apple Cultists beginning March 1. Apple's new iPoo™ lineup is expected to easily surpass the iPod shuffle as the company's most popular product. Yes, Apple Cultists can already easily create their own iPoo™, but feces didn't seem cool until Jobs told them it was cool. Remember, kids: the ONLY cool feces is Jobs' highly individualistic, rebellious iPoo™ (coming soon in six different colors/flavors, including the red [hematochezia] and black [melena] U2 GI bleed model)

------------------------
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.
------------------------

Say hello to my little friend...

warez and patchers and cracks... OH MY!!!!!
ackmondual @ 4/25/2005 4:56:06 PM # Q
budrowilson @ 4/23/2005 3:22:02 PM

The only real argument here is, if you'd never shown Anakin the power of the dark side, he never would have converted. All you can do is hope that more Palm software customers are like Luke, and after seeing both sides, denies the call of the dark side.

>
nah. To me, going by this post alone and not knowing from the context of previous posts, I'd swear u were talking about going to PPC and not warez :p

Even so, IMO, isolating Anakin from the dark side wouldn't have been enough. He still would've turned. The only real solution would have been to *NOT* make Anakin a jedi knight in the first place.... Just like to keep Palm piracy, to not even introduce PDAs to those pirates in the first place.

.

The Voice of Reason @ 4/23/2005 7:02:09 PM
Given the choice between paying a couple dollars for a well coded, well supported app and stealing it, I think most people would choose/are choosing stealing.

>
I beg to differ. I think I speak for many of us when I say I'd rather pay a couple of $$ rather than go through the trouble of warez. I hear people can wait/spend up to 2 months just to find cracks and patched files and sometimes even usually end up empty handed.

Of course, the fact that there *areN'T* ANY well supported, well coded apps for only a couple $$ ends up proving your point anyways. Hell, we'd be lucky to have a well coded, well supported app for even $20 nowadays.

Nothing personal against the stout community of Palm devs. I have had many of my problems and concerns resolved within a timely manner, but there have been some bad apples as well.

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