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September 18, 2008

Nokia's (life)viNe

by Ms. Jen

1. The Flash intro page to Nokia's lifeviNe Mobile App 2. Start / Recording with Nokia's lifeviNe Mobile App 3. If you didn't upload your media when you stopped recording, upload by selecting "Past Journeys" 4. Scroll through each "Journey" to pick the one you want to upload. 5. lifeviNe allows one to then see the number of photos to be uploaded & a thumbnail of a photo. 6. lifeviNe allows you to "Upload Everything" or "Choose Media", I like to choose my photos 7. At this stage you can also rename your Journey or append to the date 8. Here is the screen where you can choose the photos by thumbnail

For the next two months I, Ms. Jen, am participating in the Nokia viNe project, of which a number of different folks from around the world have been given trial Nokia N82's that have a new Nokia geo-tracking-photo-video-music application* called lifeviNe**. At its most simple, lifeviNe is a 2nd major iteration of SportsTracker mobile app that has been repurposed and redesigned for photo and video geo-tracking rather than adding photos to one's workout. This past February, I had the opportunity to participate in the  Nokia Urbanista Diaries, where four bloggers / photographers were sent around the world in four separate two-week trips. During the Urbanista Diaries trip, we used Nokia N82's to take photos, all the while we ran SportsTracker as we went out and about.  At the end of every "Workout", I would upload the "Workout" to my account at the SportsTracker web site, and then the Urbanista Flash app on the Nokia Nseries website would display my/our photos on the geo-tracked-located-mapped route for each of the Urbanista Diarists.

I had several objections to using SportsTracker, of which my two greatest were that I was unable to pick and choose the photos I wanted uploaded and other other was that I was unable to upload the photos and geo-tracked kml files to my own blog but could only upload them to Nokia's SportsTracker web app.  I am a big believer in owning your own stuff and still love Nokia's LifeBlog after four years of use due to the fact that I can upload all the photos to my Movable Type blog. Then my posts and photos are on my server, not a company that may or may not have the service in a few years or may or may not ever offer the ability to export or backup my data.

Why did it matter if the SportsTracker app on the mobile uploaded all my photos from one "Workout" session? Well, I belong to the shoot frequently and often school of photography. I uploaded nearly 1300 photos in the two weeks that I was on the Urbanista trip. this was overkill.  I also like to send my very best photo of the day to my blog, a few others to flickr, and then I am willing to share the other good ones up to other services (many times these photos will overlap).

The true treat of the lifeviNe mobile app is that it allows me to choose which media (photos taken, videos captured, or songs listened to) I want to upload with each "Journey."  As stated above, lifeviNe appears to based on the same mobile app as SportsTracker, but it has been overhauled in not just the user interface and experience, but also in the language used (Yay, I am not Joe Average anymore!). Overall, it is a much better user experience for a mobile photographer who loves to take daily photo walks.  Now, if they would only allow me to add in my own server information so that I could send the chose photos and geo-tracked data to my own server.

At this point, I don't know when the lifeviNe Mobile App will be available for download to your Nokia mobile, but I will ask this (past) week when I am in Helsinki and report back to you all. 


* No, I will not call lifeviNe a widget. A widget is a snippet of code that has functionality that one can paste onto one's website and it does something (like the flickr badge is in essence a widget). An application on one's mobile is a mobile app. lifeviNe and SportsTracker are mobile apps. Sorry to descend into semantics here, but when we tech folk toss around buzzwords is makes it very confusing for average folk. If we are clear and consistent in our terminology***, then people might understand what we are talking about and use the product or software.

Please further note, that due to various IP/trademark/corporate bits that at this time the LifeviNe mobile app will now be called Nokia viNe, even though the app on the N82 in my mitts is lifeviNe.  Yes, it is confusing, but please take up all complaints to the lawyers at Time-Life.

** At the time of publishing, the mobile app's name will most likely be changed from lifeviNe to Nokia viNe, due to certain company's with the name of Time-Life who feel that there is a trademark infringement, although I personally prefer lifeviNe to Nokia viNe.  One company can't own every use and combination of the word life. WtFE.

*** While we are at it, can we throw out any phrases that use "Rich" in front of the words web, app, application, mobile, etc? And then convince the marketing folk to do so as well? kthxbai.

**** If you are viewing this post on Black Phoebe :: Ms. Jen, click on the thumbnails, as it will walk you through a Lightbox slideshow. If you are viewing this post on Darla Mack's S60 News and Reviews, then I don't have access to Darla's templates to add the Lightbox scripts, sorry, but you get the idea.


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Adam F

Just curious you mentioned in the Urbanista events you used N82's with sports tracker, were you guys able to run this all day? how did you find the battery holding up? These apps seem really neat but I can't see my N82 going much more than 5-6hrs before it's outta juice


Ricky Cadden

Adam took the words out of my mouth - battery life is already a big factor in mobile devices, and when I'm traveling, it's an even bigger issue. I wonder, Ms. Jen (glad to see you over here, btw, congrats!), if you could include, as part of your testing, a good battery life comparison, in 2 parts:

1. Overall daily usage. Use your N82 as you normally would, through a normal day, geotagging photos, etc.
2. Now, do the same, only keep LifeviNe/NokiaviNe/GrApevIne/whateveritscalled running while you're on your photowalk, and pretty much anytime you're not sitting at your house.

Difference? In minutes, hours? Anything else noticable?

Also, snap a few pics with the Vineyard running on your N82, and then snap a few with just the built-in geotagging, while you've got this application running: http://www.forum.nokia.com/main/resources/user_experience/power_management/nokia_energy_profiler/

That should give us a good idea as to the real powersuckage of this app, and whether it's really worth using.

Ms. Jen

Hi Adam & Ricky,

I have one answer to the battery problem:

The One Device to Rule Them All: The PowerMonkey Explorer.


Seriously. I have very small hands for an adult (the N95 8GB is too wide for my hand and the iPhone is outrageously large. The N82 is perfect.) and the Proporta charger is just too big for me to hold while it is charging the device.

I like small purses, what can't fit in a small purse does not go with me. On the same tip, I hate backpacks or hip packs. If I am out walking and exploring and photographing, and if it can't fit in my hand or purse or pocket, then it doesn't go with me.

Now, when I was in Inida, and since, I took my PowerMonkey eXplorer with me and when the N82 (or my own N95 v.1) runs low on batter after about 4 hours or less of photos & GPS/Sportstracker/Shozu/lifeviNe/whatever, then I can hold both the phone and the PowerMonkey in one hand while I push the camera shutter with the other. I can get 3-4 charges out of the PowerMonkey, so I can go all day plus on one PowerMonkey.

Most days, I only run the GPS/SportsTracker/Nokia viNe/ShoZue for tracking when I know I want to record the geo-location or path. I don't run it all the time. So, the N82 or N95 lasts the whole day with no real troubles, and if it doesn't, out comes the PowerMonkey to solve the problem.

At the risk of sounding like a commerical (which I am not and the PM I have is purchased), the best part is the solar charger for the PowerMonkey. I have had to use it and it works.

On other tips, I don't run a lot of apps at once on my Nseries devices. If I am not using it right now, I keep it off. Thus, I am able to reduce battery wear and tear.

If you would like me to run the Energy Profiler during a photowalk, I can and report it back to you.

Ricky Cadden

Ms Jen - thanks for the response, and the tip on the PowerMonkey - checking it out now. I would indeed still like to see some Energy Profiler readings with LifeviNe and some with just the N82's geotagging facilities.

Ms. Jen

Aye Aye, Commodore Cadden, I will do so this late this afternoon when I take the dogs to Dog Beach.

Ms. Jen

Ricky, I do have one question per my assignment, by "just the N82's geotagging facilities"...

Do you mean running the GPS while photoing, or should I be running another app (like locr, etc) as well?


Adam F

Thanks for the Tip on the PM Jen i'll check into it, I currently have a crappy little thing i got at walmart that takes 4AA batteries and charges over USB, the problem is that it gets HOOOOOOOOT! :) which leads me to believe it's using more energy to generate heat than to charge my device :)

I usually get a whole day out of my N82, that includes downloading 12-14 podcasts maybe a picture, possibly 30-40 minutes of GPS and some email. I use it as an mp3 player on the plane however, that Murders the battery :) those days I need the little recharger.


Ms. Jen

Hi Adam - What I like about the PowerMonkey eXplorer is that it charges by wall socket, USB, and solar. I used the solar part in India, whilst on a boat in Kerala, but most of the time I use the USB or wall.

Avast ye Commodore Cadden, Arrrrrrr.... I have some somewhat scientific results for you.... Nokia viNe is sucking less power than the native GPS & photo. How would you like your somewhat scientific pirate results?


Happy Talk Like a Pirate Day!


I'm more concerned that this NokiaviNe is focused, yet again for the N-Series devices. I currently own an E-Series (E71) and its my only S60 device. I'd like to be able to use this Vine application, not everyone is multimedia/business only focus - our needs & uses are elastic.


Helsinki? What fun. The Urbanista trip sounds intriguing as well. I'm all about the travel- not so much the tech stuff- I'm a DSLR grll, and even b&w film again lately.

Ms. Jen

Hi Cynthia!

Have you been down to Columbia and Ecuador in recent years?

The Urbanista Diaries trip to India was very good. I have tons of photos at my web blog (blackphoebe.com/msjen).

Helsinki, I loved. It is my new fave city. It bumped London off its top perch of the last 20 years. Bye London, Hello Helsinki!

smiles, jen ;o)

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