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June 19, 2008

Popcorn, Lebanon, oh, and some Nokia phones

ESPOO, Finland – We, sort of, regularly scan a bunch of top news feeds related to Nokia and general mobile stuff (see ‘Sites we follow’ further down in the right column) and bookmark the more interesting items (see Our picks – eyes right!). It’s our way of showing you what things are sparking our interest and what thoughts might work their way into an article or interview.

I do the bulk of the bookmarking, but recently all of us on the Conversations team have been discussing how the whole social bookmarking trend is rarely backed up with reasoning or insight – it’s so transient and bite-size that we never get time to stop and ask why. So we’re gonna begin doing exactly that. Starting here, highlighting some of these bookmarks with a little more detail about why they caught my eye. Also, instead of a furtive pointing to another site, it’ll give us the opportunity to bring the topic front-and-center. Here goes…

Nokia E66 and E71

Our big news of the week (so far) was the launch of the Nokia E66 and E71. I would be remiss if I didn’t point out the amazing in-depth review by Steve Lichtfield, over at All About Symbian.

Photos from Lebanon

Rita El Khoury is a pharmacy student in Beirut. She also is well known under her nom-de-plume Dotsisx (taken from the file format of software for Symbian smartphones) and her great articles ranging from product reviews to industry analysis. On her personal site, she recently announced she would be doing a series of posts related to gadgets replaced by her Nseries device and another of weekly re-caps. Should be interesting. But what caught my eye is her “Lebanon through the eyes of an Nseries”, a series of daily images she’ll be taking with her new Nokia N82. Should be engaging, since it’s an interesting time in Lebanon and in Rita’s life.

Mobile 2.0 Conference

Mobile20Eu Logo 220

In a few weeks I’ll be in Barcelona for Mobile 2.0, a conference that “brings together experts and thought leaders from all aspects of the mobile ecosystem, including startups, investors, mobile carriers, device manufacturers, and mobile application developers and web technologists.” It sounds interesting. But what stands out to me is the selection of start-ups the conference organizers have decided to promote. I find Europe less friendly to start-ups than my native USA, so I think it’s great the organizers of this conference are working hard to promote European start-ups. And I know that at least two of the organizers, Rudy de Waele and Peter Vesterbacka, have spent that last years aggressively promoting and helping mobile industry start-ups.

You win some, you lose some

One topic we like to highlight here is how Nokia involves customers in creating products. One of our more visible efforts is the Nokia Beta Labs. In Beta Labs, interesting software or services from our internal Alpha Labs are brought before the public for evaluation. Some graduate and go on to live a fruitful life. But some just don’t pass muster and are retired. Such was the fate of PC Phone. [hat tip to]

Carnival of the Mobilists

I’m not the only one going around scanning the world for interesting tid-bits in the mobile world. One long-running round-up is Carnival of the Mobilists. Rotating between the mobilistas, this is the one ‘must-read’ if you want to keep your finger on the pulse of the mobile industry. The latest one is on Ubiquitous Thoughts and covers the iPhone, education, and operator revenue, among other interesting items.

Mobile phones make people disappear, in addition to popping corn

One more thing. What would the Web be without a good dose of humour? We’ve been seeing a flurry of videos purporting to pop popcorn with a mobile phone. Of course, the folks here at Nokia want to let you know that all these are fake and that there is no way to cook popcorn (or an egg) with a mobile phone. But, if you don’t believe me, the folks at Seesmic did a video of all the things fours ringing cell phones can do (below). Let it roll.

Image from Irargerish