2001 wasn’t just an interesting year in space. I just came across some stuff from the distant past that still resides in a dark and abandoned corner of the interweb. It gave me a smile as it resonates with we’re trying to achieve at work today…
It is important to us that the advice we give about building traffic or managing communication on the internet be challenged, so we build experiments to test our theories and bench-test the assumptions of our consultancy.
These tests are performed using full-size, properly developed environments which we develop and run online. These projects generate data which we feed back into client projects, further increasing the accountability of our services.
Some experiments are so successful that they become self-sustaining. Others are interesting in the way they shine new light on existing business models. In this section of our website you will find a collection of reports, articles and features written by the project leads.
On low bandwidth email (popwml)
Email on your telephone? (posted 11 aug 2001) Wap is dead. Yes I know, all right already. For those of you in the UK market who beheld BT’s ‘silver surfer’ last year, the whole wireless application protocol thing has been a massive disappointment. The small (tiny, even) screen, lack of colour and restricted browser experience were never going to live up to the hype.
Wireless applications are not dead, in fact they’re in their infancy, and as is often the case with networked applications, the technology is less relevant than the way you use it. In other words, there are so few useful wap sites out there that the general public has largely given up on wap.
Well, Pumpernickle people use a service we created called popwml. It is essentially a wml (the markup language used by mobile phones) front end for our pop (incoming mail) server. It performs a pre-determined subset of our normal email client commands. For instance, it does not allow me to send email. That would be silly - if I’m on a train, the last thing I want is to fumble with a tiny keyboard typing a long email. Why not simply call my office (it’s a telephone after all?) or send a simple text message.
The tool is designed to load a remote database with the contents of the mail server, and allow the reading and deleting of messages. Further, the listing is customised to allow the spotting of important mail. Instead of saying “you have 72 messages and listing them all in one long, hard-to-digest list, the system lists the names of the senders of those 72 messages (which makes for much smaller list).
We think this is so cool everybody should try it. If you have a dial-up connection, we can hook you up in minutes. Send us a note if you want to give it a go (this is just for fun, to give you an idea of what you can do with mobile telephone, so it’s free of course).