Thursday, March 6, 2008

Canola2 : Gone in 60 Seconds

After a few tries, I installed Canola2 and three related apps on my Nokia N810 on Wednesday.

After launching it, I was immediately impressed with the graphics- it looks great, almost like an Apple iPhone application.

I wanted to use it for autodownloading podcasts.
The main screen featured nice, large buttons designed for fingertip use, again very iPhoney. One for Music, another for Videos and the third Photos.

What the? No Podcast button?

Instead, logically, the Podcast setup is found behind the Music button. From what I had heard about Podcast support, I was expecting a Podcast button on the main screen.

I setup a feed for The Onion Radio News, one of my favorites. I used the N810 web browser to get the URL.
I was unhappily surprised that I could not Copy & Paste the URL into Canola2, but had to manually type it in after app switching to be sure it was right.

This is ok for short URLs but would be a pain for long ones.
I pressed return/enter and Canola2 spun a little loop to show it was working and then feed name appeared above a list of 5 or 6 recent episodes. Small downward pointing arrows at the right to Download each.
Looks good.

But no apparent download time scheduler or 'get all' buttton or sync functonality as in iTunes. Perhaps in a hidden menu I just can't find. I didn't RTFM. I expected intuitive ease of use.

I clicked one Download button and nothing happens. Tried another- the same.

No download progress indicator or thermometer to show progress. Not good.

Unless it wasn't working.

No error messages, however.

I also installed a related app called Canola2 Cleanup.
In the Applicaton Manager it is only described as an 'Installation clean up utility' Kind of redundant, and not helpful or informative as to what this app actually does.

Bad description.

Maybe software developers know clearly what that means.
But this is software for a Consumer device. Non dev dudes will be using these apps as well.

The slick graphical interface is so much nicer than the more developer/ programmer oriented command line so this is a sign to me that this is a Consumer application.

So I launched Canola2 Cleanup. Nothing apparent as to what it does from the main screen.

But there is an Execute button.

I clicked it and the app ran.

Turns out Cleanup means Uninstall.

Canola2 was gone in 60 seconds.

I'll have to re download it and try again another day.
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