Android Rant: Why not run on the reference platform at least…?


OK, so I’m on a Nexus 4, which is a very nice smartphone.

Imagine my surprise when I had to find out that a game that I previously bought – FIFA12 by Electronic Arts – would not work on the Nexus 4?

Don’t get me started on the fact that months after FIFA 13 is out for every platform in the world it still is nowhere to be seen for Android (and not a word by EA why that is the case).

But shouldn’t a company like EA not at least make sure that their stuff runs on Google’s reference platform devices? I can understand that there may be incompatibilities with some of the Android devices, but the select few that run the reference system?

Can I get my money back?

Analysts – What’s wrong with those people?

You know, as an employee of a publicly traded company you’re constantly being told you need to do better to support reaching the company’s financial goals, in order to satisfy the analysts’ demands.

I’m starting to believe (hah!) that’s not such a good idea. I’ve always been a sceptic, but what I read in today’s Handelsblatt is the best confirmation so far:

“Now, SAP seems to be focusing on innovations again, which costs a lot on money and diminishes the operative margins. (Original article in German)”

Are you kidding me? You’d rather have us deliver the same-old same-old and fire development, so that margins go up?

If you want a look into the kind of future that this kind of thinking might create, I suggest you read Douglas Adams’s “The Restaurant At The End Of The Universe“:

“Thank you. Since we decided a few weeks ago to adopt the leaf as
legal tender, we have, of course, all become immensely rich.”

Ford stared in disbelief at the crowd who were murmuring
appreciatively at this and greedily fingering the wads of leaves
with which their track suits were stuffed.

“But we have also,” continued the Management Consultant, “run
into a small inflation problem on account of the high level of
leaf availability, which means that, I gather, the current going
rate has something like three deciduous forests buying one ship’s

Murmurs of alarm came from the crowd. The Management Consultant
waved them down.

“So in order to obviate this problem,” he continued, “and
effectively revaluate the leaf, we are about to embark on a
massive defoliation campaign, and … er, burn down all the
forests. I think you’ll all agree that’s a sensible move under
the circumstances.”

The crowd seemed a little uncertain about this for a second or
two until someone pointed out how much this would increase the
value of the leaves in their pockets whereupon they let out
whoops of delight and gave the Management Consultant a standing
ovation. The accountants amongst them looked forward to a
profitable Autumn.

“You’re all mad,” explained Ford Prefect.

“You’re absolutely barmy,” he suggested.

“You’re a bunch of raving nutters,” he opined.

Couldn’t say it any better, I suppose.

(#disclaimer: I speak for myself here, which should be obvious. But looking at the possible audience, I’d better make it extra clear.)

Want to be rewarded for doing bad business? Join an oil company!

You may have noticed that prices at the gas pump went up last week. This has become standard, so we don’t even realize it anymore. The reason given was the shutdown of a pipeline in Alaska.

“Oil prices jumped by $2 a barrel Monday following a shutdown at an Alaskan oil field that accounts for about 8 percent of daily U.S. production.

Gasoline futures also rose, and experts are expecting prices at the pump to increase by about 10 cents a gallon.

BP Exploration Alaska Inc. began shutting down 400,000 barrels of daily oil production Sunday at Prudhoe Bay, in Alaska’s North Slope region, due to severe corrosion on a pipeline.”

Sounds normal, doesn’t it? But wait – there was no explosion or anything serious, it’s just rust. When the pipeline has been repaired, the oil will be flowing normally again. So, there is no current shortage of supply, no loss of oil, it just starts flowing through the pipes a bit later.

Why does that have to affect the price? There is no loss for BP, on the contrary: due to the rising prices, they get rewarded by more money for the oil they deliver now! Anyone ready to take a bet that the price won’t go down by the same amount after the pipeline is repaired?

Also, rust doesn’t exactly build up in a day – I heard that these pipelines hadn’t been serviced for fourteen (!) years – so it was just sloppyness that led to the problem.

I’m in the wrong business….