Happy Birthday, Sarah! Can I go back to sleep, now, Nokia?

by Guy Kewney | posted on 04 April 2006

It's one o'clock in the morning, and all is quiet. Heavy snoring apart, nobody is making a sound, and the beginnings of tomorrow's hangover are just developing. Into this peace and quiet, a bell begins to tinkle insistently. It's the mobile phone. Why? Because this is Sarah Keys's birthday.

Guy Kewney

The result: the entire family blundering around the apartment, looking for the wretched phone, terrified that it's an emergency text from some hospital or other, or a special ring tone. But no: it's the diary alarm, warning of an appointment due.

Happy Birthday, Sarah. But I suspect next year, we won't remember it, because, having switched from a Windows Mobile phone to a Nokia N90, we either have to debug the "appointments" system, or delete all-day events from the calendar.

What happens is that Microsoft Outlook keeps tabs on your diary plans, and transfers them to your smartphone. If it's a Windows smartphone, it seems the system is smart enough to realise that an alarm is inappropriate at certain moments.

Alas! - the Nokia PC Suite, about which I've had occasion to moan before, seems to be simpler in mind. It's midnight, GMT, which is 1 AM in daylight savings time, and it's Sarah Keys's birthday! Ring the bells! Sound the alarms! Wake everybody up!

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