07-08-12 03:43 PM
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  1. lawguyman's Avatar
    This is RIM's story about why a delay is neccessary:

    Over the past several weeks, RIM's software development teams have been very successful in the development of substantial features for the BlackBerry 10 platform. However, with the long and strong inflow of the integration -- of those hitches into the integration process into the platform, this has proven to be more challenging and time consuming than anticipated. I want to make clear that these issues are not related to the quality of functionality of the features in the software but rather to the time required to manage the integration of such a large volume of incoming code and to prepare it for commercial use globally.
    Does this story make sense?

    What is he actually describing?
    06-30-12 06:46 AM
  2. Mystic205's Avatar
    its simple spin talk.. for schedule slips playingout in every R&D company in the country today...
    a) the project manager did not a high quality guesstimate for the project. or
    b) the project manager did have a good grasp on timeline, but was scared to tell me; or
    c) the project manager had a grasp, told me, but i told him what the schedule had to be and told him to make it so..and under pressure he agreed.

    i could go on, but i think those are the top three
    purijagmohan and Alex_Hong like this.
    06-30-12 07:10 AM
  3. sosumi11's Avatar
    Isn't "the time required to manage the integration of such a large volume of incoming code and to prepare it for commercial use globally" a form of "functionality"?
    06-30-12 07:12 AM
  4. lawguyman's Avatar
    I know in the law, which is my field, we can have a buch of people working on different points in a brief. Those people can all do a good job but at the end of the day, it falls on one person to put it all together and make sense of it all and make it read consistently. This process can take a long time and can not be made faster by adding more people to the project. This is kind of how I read Heins' comments.

    What surprised me is that he says that RIM has had success "over the past several weeks" in the "development of substantial features for the BlackBerry 10 platform."

    Past "several weeks?" Come again? WTF has been going on for the last two or more years?
    06-30-12 07:18 AM
  5. bk1022's Avatar
    No.

    There is something fundamentally wrong with their software teams that makes things very slow and tortured.

    The best example is that an email and calendar app takes maybe 1000 man hours of work, yet RIM took 18 months to push an update for it because of not understanding the consumer and management insisted on a huge amount of scope creep regarding security and other updates. The PB was missing two huge features for which it was derided.

    App world is another example of incompetence. It is one of the slowest apps ever written. It is extremely poorly written.

    I could assemble a team with $200MM and produce a BB10 device using qnx from scratch in 6 months. Never hire inexperienced UofW programmers to develop software. An experienced programmer is worth ten to twenty times an inexperienced one. There is no savings to be had by having someone spaghettify your code with latent bugs. Compare this with Google hiring practices: the exact opposite.
    06-30-12 07:25 AM
  6. yanicmb's Avatar
    No.

    There is something fundamentally wrong with their software teams that makes things very slow and tortured.

    The best example is that an email and calendar app takes maybe 1000 man hours of work, yet RIM took 18 months to push an update for it because of not understanding the consumer and management insisted on a huge amount of scope creep regarding security and other updates. The PB was missing two huge features for which it was derided.

    App world is another example of incompetence. It is one of the slowest apps ever written. It is extremely poorly written.

    I could assemble a team with $200MM and produce a BB10 device using qnx from scratch in 6 months. Never hire inexperienced UofW programmers to develop software. An experienced programmer is worth ten to twenty times an inexperienced one. There is no savings to be had by having someone spaghettify your code with latent bugs. Compare this with Google hiring practices: the exact opposite.
    This is sooo true i have often wondered who are the minds that rim hires to innovate their software, because for every update they take soo long with it and make it seem like it is a gargantuan effort to get it done ie: email integration, proper gps, video chat integration for other software i could go on, all these nuances have crippled the playbook greatly
    06-30-12 07:36 AM
  7. pbfan's Avatar
    a software engineer myself. For me, what he said does not make any sense since he did not mention real difference between integration of BB7 phones and integrations of BB10 phones. The only thing I can guess is LTE. It is shame for them to fail to work out LTE in time.

    But if they can work out LTE playbook in time, they should be able to make BB10 phones in time for the new schedule.
    06-30-12 07:43 AM
  8. Sucroid's Avatar
    I could assemble a team with $200MM and produce a BB10 device using qnx from scratch in 6 months. Never hire inexperienced UofW programmers to develop software. An experienced programmer is worth ten to twenty times an inexperienced one. There is no savings to be had by having someone spaghettify your code with latent bugs. Compare this with Google hiring practices: the exact opposite.
    From scratch in 6 months?! You can't be serious.

    Even with $200 billion, there is no way you could put together a new GUI layer on top of QNX + NFC + USB + BlueTooth + file system + camera + graphics + audio + network + security + gps + magnetometer + accelerometer + all the APIs for devs in 6 months. Just planning how all the pieces fits together will take at least a few months and that doesn't even take into account putting together more detailed design specs for the individual components.
    06-30-12 07:44 AM
  9. lawguyman's Avatar
    No.

    There is something fundamentally wrong with their software teams that makes things very slow and tortured.

    The best example is that an email and calendar app takes maybe 1000 man hours of work, yet RIM took 18 months to push an update for it because of not understanding the consumer and management insisted on a huge amount of scope creep regarding security and other updates. The PB was missing two huge features for which it was derided.

    App world is another example of incompetence. It is one of the slowest apps ever written. It is extremely poorly written.

    I could assemble a team with $200MM and produce a BB10 device using qnx from scratch in 6 months. Never hire inexperienced UofW programmers to develop software. An experienced programmer is worth ten to twenty times an inexperienced one. There is no savings to be had by having someone spaghettify your code with latent bugs. Compare this with Google hiring practices: the exact opposite.
    I suspect that plans changed many times over time. Examples of major changes (some known and some guessed) include:

    1. The intent originally was to run legacy BB Java Apps, including mail and other PIM apps, in a Java player of sorts. This was even demoed. Apparently, it could not be made to work properly and was abandoned in favor of the current ActiveSync approach.

    2. Android support. The intent was that Android apps would run in an Android player. It became clear that this approach broke the user experience so the project was expanded to permit each Android App to run in its own window. In the 2.1 beta, this still does not work very well - I can almost always crash the Android player by opening some combination of Apps. Plus, most good Anroid Apps will not work becasue RIM does not fully support Native Android Code. Contrast this with a lone developer getting sophisticated iOS Apps to work on PlayBook, presumably in his spare time.

    3. User Interface; It is pretty clear that BB10 phones were going to have the PlayBook User Interface. For some reason, this approach was abandoned and the U.I. will now look very much like the one on Nokia's N9. Who knows when this decision was made and how much work had to be thrown away or changed?

    4. Core Apps: RIM clearly has teams working on major native Apps. Take Docs2Go. Whay does it stink as compared to the Android version? What have these guys been doing?

    5. Developer Tools: From what I understand, developers only recently got decent tools to work with. These are TAT created. Why did tool development take so long all the while TAT is demonstrating proof-of-concept apps that look cool but no one can ever use. It sound like people at TAT were more interested in cooking up demos than they were at gettign the tools ready.

    So, big plan changes must have slowed things down.
    06-30-12 07:47 AM
  10. lawguyman's Avatar
    This is sooo true i have often wondered who are the minds that rim hires to innovate their software, because for every update they take soo long with it and make it seem like it is a gargantuan effort to get it done ie: email integration, proper gps, video chat integration for other software i could go on, all these nuances have crippled the playbook greatly
    Yes and the release version of email was still buggy in many ways. The 2.1 beta is much better though.

    It kind of makes me wonder if RIM would not have been better off if it had not simply forked Android like Amazon did. In this way, RIM could build on a lot of work that has already been done but still have a distinctive OS that is different than Android.
    Mister-E likes this.
    06-30-12 07:53 AM
  11. Sucroid's Avatar
    I suspect that plans changed many times over time. Examples of major changes (some known and some guessed) include:

    1. The intent originally was to run legacy BB Java Apps, including mail and other PIM apps, in a Java player of sorts. This was even demoed. Apparently, it could not be made to work properly and was abandoned in favor of the current ActiveSync approach.
    They probably wasted a lot of time on this.

    2. Android support. The intent was that Android apps would run in an Android player. It became clear that this approach broke the user experience so the project was expanded to permit each Android App to run in its own window. In the 2.1 beta, this still does not work very well - I can almost always crash the Android player by opening some combination of Apps. Plus, most good Anroid Apps will not work becasue RIM does not fully support Native Android Code. Contrast this with a lone developer getting sophisticated iOS Apps to work on PlayBook, presumably in his spare time.
    Android support is getting better every iteration. What they have achieved is quite remarkable, really. Not many people expected it to work as well as it did. There is probably nothing you can do about Native Android Code since native is OS-specific.

    3. User Interface; It is pretty clear that BB10 phones were going to have the PlayBook User Interface. For some reason, this approach was abandoned and the U.I. will now look very much like the one on Nokia's N9. Who knows when this decision was made and how much work had to be thrown away or changed?
    UI can kill a lot of time.

    4. Core Apps: RIM clearly has teams working on major native Apps. Take Docs2Go. Whay does it stink as compared to the Android version? What have these guys been doing?
    Indeed. This is really inexcusable. How can the core apps be so lame? Just look at the stock PDF reader.

    5. Developer Tools: From what I understand, developers only recently got decent tools to work with. These are TAT created. Why did tool development take so long all the while TAT is demonstrating proof-of-concept apps that look cool but no one can ever use. It sound like people at TAT were more interested in cooking up demos than they were at gettign the tools ready.
    It's much easier to write proof-of-concept stuff. But building APIs that devs can use is non-trivial. Just take a look at the documentation for UIKit on iOS. It's like an encyclopedia! And Cocoa on OS X is even worse (better?).
    06-30-12 08:08 AM
  12. bek816's Avatar
    "I could assemble a team with $200MM and produce a BB10 device using qnx from scratch in 6 months."

    Then you are clearly wasting your time on these forums. Get yourself some venture capital money and get it done.

    Remember, nine women can't make a baby in a month. Some tasks need to be completed serially.

    As others have said above, I suspect that this is a really a case of scope creep.
    06-30-12 08:20 AM
  13. moretreelessbush's Avatar
    I think it's entirely possible.

    For a release as complex as BB10, there are probably half a dozen branches, each for some different major features. While those features may be completed individually on their respective branches, each branch needs to be re-based from the main branch (to pick up the latest) and further tested before they can be integrated. That's time consuming.
    06-30-12 08:36 AM
  14. the_sleuth's Avatar
    RIM has a lot of co-op students writing/testing code for BBOS 10 according to my source. RIM is laying off most of the experienced programmers due to JAVA only coding skills. Also QNX is doing a great job with the OS but BBOS 10 is the most complex project it has ever undertaken.

    It took Apple 3 years to develop iOS. QNX built the foundation with PB OS 1.0 but I think there will be another delay perhaps like to April or May 2013.

    RIM strategic blunder is not hiring/headhunting experienced Mobile OS talent from Apple, Google, and WebOS. People with coding skills in C++.

    QNX team is learning mobile OS as it goes along the development curve.

    No.

    There is something fundamentally wrong with their software teams that makes things very slow and tortured.

    The best example is that an email and calendar app takes maybe 1000 man hours of work, yet RIM took 18 months to push an update for it because of not understanding the consumer and management insisted on a huge amount of scope creep regarding security and other updates. The PB was missing two huge features for which it was derided.

    App world is another example of incompetence. It is one of the slowest apps ever written. It is extremely poorly written.

    I could assemble a team with $200MM and produce a BB10 device using qnx from scratch in 6 months. Never hire inexperienced UofW programmers to develop software. An experienced programmer is worth ten to twenty times an inexperienced one. There is no savings to be had by having someone spaghettify your code with latent bugs. Compare this with Google hiring practices: the exact opposite.
    Thunderbuck and ptpete like this.
    06-30-12 08:46 AM
  15. sf49ers's Avatar
    it doesn't matter what all the self proclaimed software engineers on this site think? but there is some truth in what RIM is saying since I am an Integration Engineer myself (that is what I do for my living, I integrate systems and software), Integration is one of the most difficult jobs than building an application in silo: here are some facts

    1) RIM is building a mobile platform from scratch - Firstly what is present in the playbook is bare minimum - they are various things like radio stack, app integration framework, voice and data modules, PIM integration all across the system, backend services, BES/BIS integration, 3rd party developer APIS, Cloud integration etc. Building those things is one thing but integrating them is a total different ball game and it takes good amount of time and obviously some surprises might crop up while they integrate since no human could anticipate all failure/error scenarios (there is no software product without these kind of issues and of-course it takes time to find, debug and fix issues, also most of the software products fail due to prematured delivery owing to the pressure from management and shareholders to meet already announced deadlines - classic examples are Storm, Playbook etc ). Frankly speaking it was one of my worst fears with BB10. Also keep in mind the amount of time went into planning designing the system and agreeing up on a framework to build BB10, these tasks usually take up 30-50% of the project timeline ( I suspect BB10 development might have started only late last year)

    2) MYTH busters - It took Software giants like Apple and Microsoft forever to deliver a Mobile OS and still missing on many fronts - you need to ask yourself, for how many years was Windows Phone 7 in development (4 years)? Apple (8+ years still lacking on many fronts), Android (stated in 2002 and debuted in 2007). If takes $200 million to build a mobile OS then every tom, d_ick and harry would have got one. RIM is one of the companies who have pioneered this space and it is beyond doubt if someone can build a better mobile OS it is them - smart phones are not just about games or apps and what we customers oversee subtle but very important aspects live longevity, efficiency, productivity, security and functional rather than glossy interfaces.

    3) RIM has backend NOC integration which is big concern for them since they are building BB10 for enterprises as well.


    People be patient, RIM owes the Blackberry brand more than any body else and it's survival depend on it, and I have 100% faith in RIM, QNX and Tat teams. What they have done with Playbook is something remarkable, it was brought to fruition in less than an year after QNX acquition and that speaks volumes about their capabilities.
    Last edited by sf49ers; 07-03-12 at 12:07 AM.
    06-30-12 08:49 AM
  16. Sucroid's Avatar
    RIM strategic blunder is not hiring/headhunting experienced Mobile OS talent from Apple, Google, and WebOS. People with coding skills in C++.

    QNX team is learning mobile OS as it goes along the development curve.
    I wonder if RIM hired any top mobile system architects.
    06-30-12 08:51 AM
  17. sf49ers's Avatar
    RIM has a lot of co-op students writing/testing code for BBOS 10 according to my source. RIM is laying off most of the experienced programmers due to JAVA only coding skills. Also QNX is doing a great job with the OS but BBOS 10 is the most complex project it has ever undertaken.

    It took Apple 3 years to develop iOS. QNX built the foundation with PB OS 1.0 but I think there will be another delay perhaps like to April or May 2013.

    RIM strategic blunder is not hiring/headhunting experienced Mobile OS talent from Apple, Google, and WebOS. People with coding skills in C++.

    QNX team is learning mobile OS as it goes along the development curve.
    it took IOS 3 years but see what QNX had done with playbook OS in less than year, IOS was missing on 100s of features when it debuted - no proper email, no corporate support, no active sync, no bluetooth, no multi-tasking, no flash, no led blinker, no notifications, no folder support, poor battery. RIM can't afford to miss any key features that competition has at this stage as it is competing with matured systems and for that it need time although it is fast running out.

    hmm..people have a very short memory?
    06-30-12 08:56 AM
  18. Sucroid's Avatar
    it took IOS 3 years but see what QNX had done with playbook OS in less than year, IOS was missing on 100s of features when it debuted - no proper email, no corporate support, no active sync, no bluetooth, no multi-tasking, no flash, no led blinker, no notifications, no folder support, poor battery. RIM can't afford to miss any key features that competition has at this stage as it is competing with matured systems and for that it need time although it is fast running out.

    hmm..people have a very short memory?
    People just expect BB10 to outdo iOS.
    06-30-12 08:58 AM
  19. sf49ers's Avatar
    No.

    There is something fundamentally wrong with their software teams that makes things very slow and tortured.

    The best example is that an email and calendar app takes maybe 1000 man hours of work, yet RIM took 18 months to push an update for it because of not understanding the consumer and management insisted on a huge amount of scope creep regarding security and other updates. The PB was missing two huge features for which it was derided.

    App world is another example of incompetence. It is one of the slowest apps ever written. It is extremely poorly written.

    I could assemble a team with $200MM and produce a BB10 device using qnx from scratch in 6 months. Never hire inexperienced UofW programmers to develop software. An experienced programmer is worth ten to twenty times an inexperienced one. There is no savings to be had by having someone spaghettify your code with latent bugs. Compare this with Google hiring practices: the exact opposite.
    RIM brought cloud on Mobile even before it is called a Cloud, don't underestimate their capabilities, building an email client was not their problem but making a decision was - to go with Active sync or not? and kill their cashcow BIS forever
    06-30-12 09:03 AM
  20. berklon's Avatar
    People just expect BB10 to outdo iOS.
    And from the position RIM is in, it had to. People aren't going to be patient while RIM fumbles about trying to add features to a phone that the competition has had for years. Why wait around waiting for something that's already available elsewhere? Who would want to stick around with very few apps available?

    At this point it no longer matters as people will NOT wait for BB10. The delay is the final nail in RIMs coffin. Everything management is saying right now is to keep as many people as possible from jumping ship - to reduce the amount of losses as much as they can while they pray for someone to buy them.

    Sadly, other than patents - I don't think there's anything RIM has that any company wants to buy. Their shares have been pretty low for a while now - still no interest.

    It's over.
    JeepBB and kennyliu like this.
    06-30-12 09:11 AM
  21. bk1022's Avatar
    I suspect that plans changed many times over time.

    So, big plan changes must have slowed things down.
    Oh, I don't disagree. This is a problem at the project management and team leader level. But this isn't the only problem. And I dare say, a more senior software team would give starkly realistic timelines that would have the effect of telling the moronic management to suck it.
    06-30-12 09:12 AM
  22. morlock_man's Avatar
    While I do believe they may have underestimated the difficulty in writing code for such a deeply integrated distributed system, maybe this was a strategic decision.

    Why launch their new platform in the Fall when everyone else is completing their refresh?

    Wait for them to commit their products to market, then deliver a platform that offers features they can't compete with.

    Epic Win.
    gryphon13 and Cesare21 like this.
    06-30-12 09:24 AM
  23. bk1022's Avatar
    "I could assemble a team with $200MM and produce a BB10 device using qnx from scratch in 6 months."

    Then you are clearly wasting your time on these forums. Get yourself some venture capital money and get it done.

    Remember, nine women can't make a baby in a month. Some tasks need to be completed serially.

    As others have said above, I suspect that this is a really a case of scope creep.
    I don't have the skills to raise $200MM... You see, I'm aware of what my limitations are. I don't go promise the sky and miss deadlines all the time. I have been programming since I was 7, and I dare say, I am pretty good at real-time application programming, since that's my primary job. I have worked at several large public corporations over the years, so I have some understanding of what can and cannot be done depending on quality of execution.

    I can tell you straight up, that I can meet technical requirements at twenty times the rate of a junior programmer -- and humbly, I don't think I'm very special, there are many people out there better than I am.. Perhaps RIM should have hired them instead of Google or Apple.

    Most of the phone's critical functions are done in hardware and kernel modules, which if not completed already means RIM will be bankrupt before it is finised. The delay is mostly with the dev API and the UI -- THIS IS TOTALLY UNACCEPTABLE -- reduce the scope and get it out.
    06-30-12 09:28 AM
  24. Mystic205's Avatar
    its simple spin talk.. for schedule slips playingout in every R&D company in the country today...
    a) the project manager did not a high quality guesstimate for the project. or
    b) the project manager did have a good grasp on timeline, but was scared to tell me; or
    c) the project manager had a grasp, told me, but i told him what the schedule had to be and told him to make it so..and under pressure he agreed.

    i could go on, but i think those are the top three
    06-30-12 09:29 AM
  25. lawguyman's Avatar
    The delay is mostly with the dev API and the UI -- THIS IS TOTALLY UNACCEPTABLE -- reduce the scope and get it out.
    This makes sense in an ideal world but I think that RIM will be crucified in the press if BB10 is not competitive pretty much feature for feature with iOS and Android AND offer something different on top of that.

    This became clear to me when the press got to see PlayBook before it was released and the "reporters" (ie fanboys) from Engadget (or one of those sites) attacked PlayBook's multitasking as unnecessary and without purpose. There are plently of people actively rooting for RIM to fail (and RIM generally plays into these people's desires, unfortunately).
    06-30-12 09:36 AM
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