What has the QNX auto team been up to?

Well, let's see...

The Twisted Soul Which Is The Internet

An alternative title for this entry could have been, "Ron Brynaert, welcome to my world."

Oh, now I remember what was supposed to go into this entry. It concerns a recent brush with greatness I had back in August 2010.


I found a contact address for Angharad Aubrey. She played the little girl, Susy Fane, in the Bette Davis' 1965 vehicle The Nanny. Here's what she wrote back.
Yes, that is me - a long time ago! Thanks for the lovely comments. You are right, it is a classic. I remember being terrified of Bette Davis off set - I don't think she was a big fan of little kids and she would fix me with that famous stare and I'd be off and running - William Dix was positively evil as well! I didn't pursue acting as a career after I graduated from school, but I have great childhood memories to cherish. All the best. :)
That's what we refer to in the business as a sweetie.


No Más, No Más

Today I officially move on with the rest of my life. This is my "No Más" moment. I will never blog again anywhere except for right here at DFQ2. I gave my "Goodbye Cruel World" tweets hours ago (@Prepostericity). I gave up on Pffugee Camp well before then. It's pointless.

Nothing will be deleted. I didn't close the Twitter account. I still drop a "bump" post at my first blog every once in a while to keep it from being scrubbed due to inactivity. I will still maintain my fantastic movie channel. But that's it. I refuse to run around like a chicken with its head chopped off ala Ron Brynaert. Now what in the heck is he thinking? No one is listening and no one cares. Get off the net and write a book. Save your soul.

Yeah we all know Twitter is useless anyway. I suppose it's got some value. If you find some nice folks who tweet interesting links, then cool whoop de doo. That's not too shabby.

Anonymous is toast. It's been confirmed by credible sources that one in four hackers is an FBI informant. Neal Rauhauser is most definitely on their payroll. And what's that say about our Military-Industrial Complex that they would pay such a dumbf*ck to spread convolution? Who in the hell could be stupid enough to believe the crap he dishes out? Who in their right mind would waste any time reading what he posts? He's basically the lowest form of scum a human can be. He would have fit in well in Nazi Germany. He is that pathetic. Bet on it.

This is going to be a lame excuse for my tail off in blogging, but my computer is on its last legs. I could fill ye in on that, but it's the truth take it or leave it.

I used to be able to do what Brynaert does. What has become part of the vernacular known as socratisation is actually basic googling + writing skills + academic training. You can try this at home.

I will be getting a new computer in a few weeks. Yeah, I could parlay that into a second wind of blogging life. But that's not the plan. Yes, I will still blog from time to time. It's in my blood but the bulk of my future writing will be done in private. If I'm ever able to string together some good pages, I will approach a publisher. However, I am no longer going to keep doing this for free except for as a basic hobby.

Let's see what I have on my to do list:

*** Find volunteer work
*** Get a library card
*** Form book ideas

Maybe donkeytale will show up again. My plan with him is to simply not engage. He is not a nice person. He's actually quite vicious at times. I do not need that in my life.

I'm a very good person. Or I used to be. The internet's negatives have rubbed off on me. That brings me to this fork in the road. I can continue to drift and let the internet corrupt my soul. Or I can get back to how I used to be, pure at heart.

I have told my story to the best of my abilities. It was actually not too badly done. I am satisfied with it.

Above I had a few paragraphs where I was spewing a lot of hate towards Neal Rauhauser. I deleted them. He is not worth it. Donkeytale is not worth it.

Do I have a good idea what's going on? For sure I do. There's simply no point in pissing into the wind. Sure you gotta keep pissing, for it's not healthy to keep body waste in your bladder. Ugh, I was never that good with euphemisms.

There was a certain freedom in having been outed. It forced me to tell my story. That I never asked for a cent means my words had great integrity in regards to truth.

I can perhaps crank out some new stuff once the new computer arrives. Yet for all intents and purposes I will no longer consider myself a blogger. I will be content to resume to being a regular guy who just so happens to have a blog.

I have no regrets. I done good.

It's time to let the anger go and rejoin humanity.

As a leftier than thou, I will leave you with the following:

In-car infotainment and the art of doing more with less

No, not that kind of squeezing.
Granted, the title for this blog post doesn't have the pizazz of, say, "Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance." (Are you old enough to even remember that book?) But it does capture the gist of a webinar that my colleague Andy Gryc will deliver next week.

His title for the webinar is "Squeezing high-end technologies into low-end infotainment systems." Admittedly, it's more direct than mine. Which is fitting, given that Andy has direct experience designing in-car systems. OnStar, for example.

But I digress. I'm sure you'd like to know what Andy plans to cover, so here's the overview:

    Squeezing high-end technologies into low-end infotainment systems
    Today's infotainment systems have it all – full multimedia, mobile device integration, POI-enabled navigation, speech recognition, high-resolution graphics, and cloud connectivity. The only problem is all of these features come with a big price tag.
    Join Andy Gryc, automotive marketing manager, for this webinar, where he answers the question: Is it possible to build an infotainment system that meets today's customer demands with yesterday's price tag?
    A 50-minute session (plus Q&A), this webinar covers a number of techniques to help slim down your next infotainment's BOM cost; it also suggests ways to target the luxury segment as well as the more cost-conscious, high-volume one with the same basic technology.
    Date: Tuesday October 23, 2012
    Time: 12:00 pm ET
    Duration: 1 hour, including Q&A
    Who should attend: Automotive software engineers and managers

This post also appeared on the QNX Auto Blog.

QNX at SAE Convergence: Cool screens and a mobile theme

Let's start with the theme. And no, I don't mean the kind of theme you download onto your smartphone. I'm referring instead to the main theme of a press release that QNX issued yesterday at SAE Convergence.

First, some context. If you're an automaker, you have little choice: you have to offer infotainment systems that can keep pace with the crazy fast advances in mobile devices. You also need to keep your systems fresh with apps, features, and content that consumers will expect long after they've bought your car. And to do that, you'll need to tap into the skills and products of the mobile app community. Otherwise, that ultra-cool infotainment system you ship today will rapidly transform itself into the 8-track of tomorrow. Goodbye, brand image.

The QNX CAR 2 application platform, with its solid grounding in HTML5, is designed to help infotainment-system designers conquer these (admittedly difficult) challenges. HTML5, after all, has become the lingua franca of the mobile apps market and offers an ideal bridge between the mobile and automotive worlds.

One thing was missing, though — a toolkit that would make it easy for mobile app developers to target the QNX CAR 2 platform. Yesterday, at SAE Convergence, QNX announced a new HTML5 SDK designed to do just that.

An SDK for (auto)mobile developers
The HTML5 SDK for the QNX CAR 2 platform is an extension of the open source BlackBerry WebWorks framework, specially optimized for automotive environments. It allows developers to write, test, and package feature-rich automotive apps based on HTML5, CSS3, JavaScript, and other open standards. It also provides the missing glue between high-level apps and the car, through specialized APIs that provide access to automotive devices and hardware.

Runtime emulator for quicker testing and debugging
This is where the first of the screens comes in. To speed development, the HTML5 SDK provides an emulator that lets developers quickly see how their apps would look and function in a car. Developers can use the emulator to perform JavaScript debugging, HTML DOM inspection, automated testing, and screen-resolution emulation, all from the convenience of a web browser. They can even make changes to their apps and view the results without having to recompile. The simulator is based on the open source BlackBerry Ripple emulator, used by thousands of mobile developers.

For instance, in this screen capture, the emulator is being used to test the virtual mechanic provided by the QNX CAR 2 platform:

Click to magnify

Here's another example, where the emulator is being used to test an audio control application. If you were running this emulator session, you could manipulate the app's onscreen controls to adjust volume, bass, treble, fade, and balance; you could also observe the changes to the underlying data values in the right-hand panel. And you could work the other way: by changing the controls on the right, you could observe changes to the app.

Click to magnify.

QNX also plans to create a virtual marketplace that will allow developers to make their QNX CAR 2 applications available to automakers. The marketplace will provide common ground for app developers and automakers to work together, and will allow automakers to preview the applications that best fit their brands and satisfy their customers. The marketplace is expected to go live when the HTML5 SDK is released.

By the way, my colleague Kerry Johnson provides an interesting back story to the SDK, including the kinds of APIs it provides. You can read his post here. You can also find more images of the emulator on the QNX Flickr page.

3D navigation from Elektrobit
Now for the other screens. Besides announcing the SDK, QNX has brought its QNX reference vehicle, a modded Jeep Wrangler, to the SAE show floor. As always, the Jeep is running the QNX CAR 2 platform. But this time, the Jeep also includes a cool 3D navigation app from automotive software vendor Elektrobit. Here are two examples of the Elektrobit app:

That's it for now. But before you go, be sure to follow @QNX_Auto on Twitter, where we are covering the latest developments, both QNX and non-QNX, from SAE Convergence.

Taking a little break

I do not believe in deleting but just whitewashed my last entry. Though I didn't use the name of an ex-girlfriend, it would've been better to have not been posted.

I'm a bit burnt out for blogging but not too bad. I am done with donkeytale. He's off this blog. I am going to make a fresh start. He can find some other place to leech off of and be abusive to that blog's owner.

It's time for a clean slate. With all that other internet convolution behind me, I'm ready to have fun again as a blogger. If no comments come in or the views dwindle, so be it.

I'll try to get back into the swing with a new entry next week.

Now on YouTube: The incredible 1.44M QNX floppy demo!

You have got to watch this. But before you click Play, keep this in mind: The 1.44M QNX floppy demo dates from the late 1990s and its web browser was built for the 1999 Web, not the 2012 Web. So, as you'd expect, the browser in this demo displays some error messages when it's pointed at modern websites.

Other than that, prepared to be amazed. Everything you see here — OS, windowing system, web browser, TCP/IP stack, file manager, games, etc. — fit on a single, self-booting 1.44M floppy. No CD, no hard drive. And as you'll see, the demo could even download and launch new features (including a graphics driver), all on the fly. Cool, that.

Did you know? The ISO image for the 1.44M floppy demo was downloaded more than 1,000,000 times, making it the first truly successful marketing campaign for QNX Software Systems. The purpose of the demo was simple: to show developers how much performance and functionality QNX could squeeze into a resource-constrained device.

A big shout-out to ToastyTech for posting the video!

Want to see a pic of an even older QNX demo disk? Click here.