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It has been 10 years now, more or less, that I have run with a hybrid infrastructure for email.

Let me explain what I mean by that.

I have "two worlds" in which I live when it comes to email -- mobile and not.  "Not" encompasses desktop and laptop type machines; real computers.  I have an utterly enormous store of emails, going literally back to the 1980s, in hundreds upon hundreds of folders.  I file things away and archive everything else on a calendar basis.  Yeah, it's a big hunk of data.  Yeah, I may never look at 98% of it ever again.  But for that 2% given how cheap disk is these days, and that I can store it encrypted at rest having access to it is very, very nice.

Well, phones don't get along with that paradigm very well.  Among other things the amount of data involved that they can potentially get to, and their rather foolish decisions on how to keep indices (or whether to at all!) along with limited storage capacity means that trying to point one of these things at a mail store like that is asking to blow it up.

Further, even when they allegedly comply with "open standards" like IMAP or sorta-open ones like Exchange, mobile devices often don't implement it correctly (e.g. "Delete" means "file in Trash", not DESTROY), and there's enormous risk involved in allowing a client that you do not trust 100% to have access to that big store of data -- if it gets hosed you're in a heaping lot of trouble.

So for the last decade all my incoming email has been "forked", with a copy going to a special "phone" account.  It's transparent to everyone on the outside but it means that I have to delete or file the emails twice, basically -- with the phone copy just being thrown away when I'm done with it.  I've lived with this because the alternative -- losing something I cannot afford to lose -- is simply not acceptable.

Through the years various devices have improved on multi-device access to contact and calendar databases, although I refuse to give any of that data to Google and similar -- I insist on running it on my own infrastructure for obvious reasons.  The capability to have a "one data store, many clients, all transparently able" has existed for that information for quite some time -- but not for email, at least not reliably.

Needless to say this is somewhat of a pain in the ass.  Start writing an email on your desktop and have it in "Drafts"?  Can't get it on the mobile, since it's not the same mail store.  Or the other way around.  Want to look up a sent email from "the other side"?  Can't do that either.

Today, this has ended.

Today, I have one device -- my BlackBerry Passport -- that has passed my testing to be trusted without the fork, which means I now have access to everything from everywhere, "deleted" emails don't really get deleted (they get filed instead as they should) and the archives, including what I send, get archived as they should too.

Yes, there are a few compromises. I have had to move some of my very old archive folders out of my primary working space, as there are still things that aren't done right with IMAP (for example); "Delete" still, to BB10, means delete rather than "move to Trash" or even better, move to a hierarchy of Archive folders by year or year and month.  Desktop clients have known how to do this for a long time and it's well past the point where mobile ones should know how as well.  As a result to maintain both compatibility and safety of my data I must implement and use a somewhat-cobbled together combination on the back end.

But BlackBerry is the first phone manufactuer that has made a device that can be put to work in this fashion and thus can be trusted not to trash your archives -- and incoming email.

Android's various incantations do not and Apple does not.

BlackBerry does.

Now maybe none of this matters to you, and in fact if you live in a world where you don't really care all that much about your email and the history it generates, along with the resource that provides to you when you need to go look something up -- this is something you shrug at.

But I live in a world where data that I want to keep has to be kept, and only intentional destruction should ever destroy it.

I've been testing the various releases available and 10.3.1 meets the requirements.  I assume 10.3.2 will as well, but the point here that bears noting is that 10.3.1 is in common and public release now.

Yes, you do need to know how to set it up and use it properly, but if you do -- the true unified view is now yours without exception.

Simply put, I'm impressed.

It's not quite 100%, but it's close enough -- and the remaining issues can be worked around.

BlackBerry folks.  Yes, there is a reason they're still around and there are still things their handsets do that nobody else does well, or even at all.

This is one of them.

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As they say, oops!

Gross billings for the quarter are expected to be in the range of $35.5-$37.0 million, below the company's guidance of $40.0-$42.0 million. Recurring billings as a percentage of gross billings increased from 57% in the fourth quarter of 2014 to approximately 65% in the first quarter of 2015. Total non-GAAP revenue is expected to be between $32.0-$33.0 million, compared to guidance of $34.0-$37.0 million. Non-GAAP revenue excludes perpetual license revenue recognized from licenses delivered prior to 2013. Cash from operations is expected to be in the range of negative $10.0 to $11.0 million. The company ended the quarter with cash and equivalents plus short-term and long-term investments of approximately $132.0 million.

So they're losing money and missed on both non-GAAP (gee, I wonder why non-GAAP?) and gross billings.

Why?

"Near the end of the quarter, we witnessed multiple large deals from North American customers that did not close as expected. Further, we saw a large shift by customers to our monthly subscription offering, which resulted in lower billings and revenue." Said Bob Tinker, CEO, MobileIron.

I wonder if BES12/Cloud, that is to say BlackBerry, has something to do with that.....

A nice monthly, hosted option by a major competitor that is both cross-platform and works very well, never mind being hosted for small and midsized businesses removing that cost center from the equation?

Yes, that might have something to do with it.  See, IT infrastructure (and the people to run it) is expensive.  BlackBerry's BES12 competitive offering, now available in the cloud with BlackBerry running the IT end at a highly-competitive cost-per-device, appears to have driven a stake through the heart of at least one competitor.

It also appears that the pump and hype machine by the underwriters of the IPO that have, in part (Morgan Stanley-cough-cough!) been slamming BlackBerry repeatedly has finally run out of gas.  Or maybe it's so-called "press releases" by the company claiming that people expect to write emails on a smartwatch!

Whatever the cause Mobile Iron's stock dove after the bell yesterday when this ditty was released, taking a $3 dirtnap representing an immediate loss of value of about 30%.

Good night Charlie.....

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I have to chuckle at what passes for "reporting" among these buttclowns:

Apple Watch is already having a ripple effect.

A lot of employees who already use mobile devices for work plan to buy an Apple Watch or similar device, according to a global survey by mobile device management company MobileIron.

And what did said people say they were going to do with said device?

Taking phone calls 58%
Reading email 56%
Writing email 45%
Getting alerts, such as meeting reminders 44%
Accessing calendar 40%
Reading documents 37%
Surfing company intranet 30%

You can't possibly be serious?

I can make a possible argument for two of those listed items, but not the rest.  Taking a phone call?  How?  You're going to hold your watch up to your ear?  Shirley you jest!

Reading an email?  On a 1.5" (roughly) screen?  Writing an email?  With what, may I ask?

Surfing a corporate intranet or reading documents?!

This much I'll say right up front -- MobileIron is the "source" of this alleged "survey", and their CEO along with the firm (that issued the "press release" to cite these claims) just outed themselves as buttclowns and unworthy of serious consideration by anyone in the corporate space.

And since their entire reason to exist comes from said consideration, well.....

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This is true but doesn't speak to the real issue at hand...

More small businesses are falling victim to “ransomware,” in which malicious code locks up computer files and cybercriminals demand a ransom to free them.

Mark Stefanick, president of a small Houston-based firm, Advantage Benefits Solutions, was shocked when one of his consultants suddenly found his work computer locked. Within hours, rogue computer code had spread from the consultant’s computer to the server and backup system at the firm. The code encrypted the claims information and financial data.

A ransom note popped up on the infected computer: Pay $400 within 72 hours to unlock the data.

I've seen this; in fact I have a friend's laptop here right now that has been hit by it.

The code in question is usually using RSA public-key encryption, which is effectively unbreakable.  The files are there but encrypted, and guess what -- you don't have the private key and it was never on your machine in the first place so there's no way to "find" it either.  The public key is there but is worthless; that's the point of public-key cryptography.

The ransom demand "gets" you, at least in theory, the private key and then the same code that trashed you decodes your files.  It takes a while, needless to say.

Now here's the real question: Why do the manufacturers of these operating systems allow executables to be loaded via email in the first place?  What possible legitimate use is there for such a thing?  Yes, I can see the argument for allowing downloads of software (of course), but there are ways to be reasonably protected in that environment -- at least requiring that https be used and that the certificate verify or, if it fails to, displaying a prominent and explicit warning that what you're about to do is very high risk.

But no! Instead we have manufacturers of operating systems that allow you to click on an attachment and execute it, by default.  The attackers take advantage of this and send you an email with an executable file; I've seen literal dozens get trapped in my spam filter on a daily basis before.  I'm willing to bet any number of them were full of ransomware (no, I'm not about to run one to find out either!)

I've yet to see an argument for permitting this, particularly in today's world where programs are measured in the tens or even hundreds of megabytes in size.  Email systems will typically refuse to pass messages over a couple of megabytes in size and that makes them essentially worthless for distributing legitimate software -- but it is perfect for distributing this sort of trash.

So why hasn't Microsoft, to be specific, prevented that execution path from working at all?  How about the third-party makers such as Thunderbird?  What decent legitimate reason is there to allow an executable to be sent as email, in short, when virtually every legitimate program these days exceeds the configured transport capacity of a single email message?

Would someone please use a liberal application of the infamous clue-by-four to Microsoft's head along with the others in the consumer and small-business space?

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Moore's Law is a never in fact stated principle that Gordon Moore said would guide electronics development -- that the transistor count on a chip would double every year (later updated to every two years.)

Gordon, however, never actually stated this as a law.

That's probably because he didn't fail arithmetic in middle school.

He also didn't, however, speak out and refute it.  That might be because he co-founded Intel, and believed that a chips arms race would benefit his company (he was right in that regard) and he'd be gone before the wall was hit (right again.)

Exponential functions can never continue indefinitely as physical limits eventually intrude and force cessation of the series.  Before that happens, however, costs usually get you -- so the actual "limit" that arithmetic gives us is never achieved.

In the case of transistors the physical limit is defined by the width of an atom or molecule of material; you cannot make a logic cell smaller than the physical building block of matter, so packing things more-tightly is impossible.  You can cheat by layering things (and manufacturers have) but then you run into another problem which is the dissipation of heat; since no circuit is 100% efficient and thus some of the energy it consumes must be rejected as heat and drawn away from the chip or it will melt.

But before you reach that point cost ramps out of control and makes further development non-economic.

We could learn something about this when it comes to debt and market manipulation if we bothered to, especially considering the number of people who believed that Moore's Law would never end.

Arithmetic cannot be cheated folks, and neither can physics.

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