BlueFletch Enterprise Launcher vs other Android Launchers

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The A-10 Warthog – Useful is Beautiful  

Back when it was first introduced in the early 80s, the A-10 Thunderbolt was cited by the Washington Post as the ugliest and slowest jet in the Air Force.  Due to it’s awkward looks, it was giving the name “Warthog” and the name stuck. If you are not familiar with the A-10 it is essentially a giant machine gun the size of a Volkswagen that fires 70 rounds of 7 inch armor piercing bullets per second, with two engines tacked on, some wings, and a carbon fiber bathtub for the pilot to sit in…. That’s about it.

Machine gun with wings

Over the last 40 years it has continuously proved itself to be incredibly useful in the role that it was built for (tank killer and close air support of troops on the ground).  During the initial Gulf War, the Warthogs destroyed over 4000 ground targets with the loss of only 4 aircraft. The Warthog has continued to operate successfully in campaigns against ISIS and other conflicts all over the globe.  

Poorly Estimated Swiss Army Knife

In the early 2000’s, the US Government decided that it was going to replace the A-10 with the next generation “Swiss Army Knife” jet known as the F-35.   The F-35 was designed to do everything: Air-to-Air Fighter… check, Bomber… check, Ground Support… check, Can opener.. check. Due to the complexity of building a one size fits all multi-role air platform, the program is hundreds of billions over budget and aircraft are just now entering active service roles.  As a result of these delays and the uncertainty around the F-35, it was decided in 2016 that the Warthog would continue to remain in service for the foreseeable future.

One of the key lessons I take away from the success of the A-10:  designing individual tools to solve a specific key mission can be better and more cost effective than building a single tool that solves every mission.
Beautiful A-10 Warthog

 

We Built Ourselves the Warthog of Android Launchers

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Painless Legacy to Android Migration for Zebra Devices

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OS Migrations Made Simple

Over the last 6 years, BlueFletch has been assisting enterprises in their migration from their legacy windows CE devices to Rugged Android Zebra devices.

BlueFletch typically helps organizations with:

  • Proof of Concept
  • Mobile Strategy
  • Application Conversion
  • MDM Structure / Setup
  • Deployment Management

In the attached PDF,  we cover the highlights of our approach and how we can assist organizations with moving to modern rugged Android devices.

Download Here:  BlueFletch OS Migration

 

 

 

 

Richard Makerson Nominated for Atlanta Business Chronicle Small Business Person of the Year Award

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Atlanta, GA – August 13, 2018 BlueFletch, award-winning leader in innovative mobile technology solutions, is proud to announce CEO and Managing Partner, Richard Makerson, has been nominated for Small Business Person of the Year, Best Minority Entrepreneur Award. The annual Small Business Person of the Year Award is brought to you by Atlanta Business Chronicle in partnership with Metro Atlanta Chamber.

The annual Small Business Person of the Year Awards pays tribute to top entrepreneurs leading their companies to success and honors outstanding entrepreneurs in metro Atlanta. Judges evaluate the nominations and choose finalists to return for interviews with the judging panel to determine the winner.

General criteria for evaluating excellence in entrepreneurship includes achieving exceptional business results that may include developing and achieving projected revenue goals, increasing workforce significantly, creating effective market awareness, demonstrating business leadership and/or developing a solid business foundation with clear goals and future growth objectives.

Candidates show exemplary business achievement, customer growth, community leadership, industry influence and entrepreneurial success, as well as demonstrate extraordinary financial success, in the past year.

“Being nominated and recognized by the judges with the Atlanta Business Chronicle has been a great experience. As a small business owner to be nominated for your hard work and sacrifice is extremely special,” said Richard Makerson. “We spend so much of our time focused on our clients, team members and how to solve the next problem that experiences such as these remind us of how much we have accomplished in 10 years.”

Categories include Rising Star, Top Job Creator, Best Veteran Entrepreneur, Best Minority Entrepreneur, Experienced Entrepreneur 7+ Years, Emerging Entrepreneur 3-7 Years, Early-Stage Entrepreneur – 1-3 Years.

Nominees for Best Minority Entrepreneur include Richard Makerson, CEO & Managing Partner of BlueFletch, Liz Frayer, President, Intrepid and Lisa Williams, Chief Insight Executive, L Insight Group.

Award winners will be announced at the Atlanta Botanical Gardens on Thursday September 20, 2018. Register here

Simplify Zebra Android OS Upgrades by Embracing Them

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The Elephant Zebra in the Room

Enterprise mobility’s elephant in the room is that Android security patches are rarely applied to the corporate-owned mobile fleet. The mobile operating system is a proven vehicle for attack via vulnerabilities in the OS, and yet companies struggle to apply patches in a timely manner. 

Google proactively (or sometimes reactively) releases monthly patches for Android via the Security Bulletin. The same patches are provided to device manufacturers, like Zebra, for inclusion in their custom Android Device OSs. Those builds, called LifeGuard™ by Zebra, provide security and support beyond the standard 3 year support window for Android.  Extending support extends the life of rugged devices and lowers the cost of ownership.

Are you scheduling OS patches into your release schedule? If a critical patch is required (e.g. Spectre), how quickly can your organization test, schedule and deploy across hundreds–or thousands–of corporate devices?

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The Intern Experience

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Ryan Miles – Android Developer

My summer internship at Bluefletch gave me the opportunity to work on real products and gain firsthand experience in how teams communicate and function. My work focused around Android development for Bluefletch’s Enterprise Mobility Services. I developed a new platform to increase supported devices, built a theming library to allow for instant demos, and researched and prototyped various future features. Each project I worked on came with new challenges that I was able to learn from.

Android for Work Devices    

During my summer, my focus was on developing a new platform to support Android for Work Devices. This platform allowed Bluefletch’s Enterprise Mobility Services to communicate with non-rugged devices if a company already had a supply of Android devices. I was able to get first-hand experience in proper application architecture and using background services. I attended weekly code reviews and received feedback on how to improve the function and style of my code from the senior developers. Toward the end of my project, I started learning how to test and use dependency injection methods like Dagger 2 properly. Learning to test inspired me to practice using other tools such as Espresso and Robolectric along with developing software using Test-Driven Development.

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The Intern Experience

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Joshua Hall – Marketing

During my work experience at BlueFletch, I was fortunate enough to have experienced first-hand the many different stages of what goes into a marketing project. I learned the general process of how a project is initially planned, developed, and completed and how much work and detail goes into every stage. Another valuable lesson I have learned during these 9 weeks, is that a Marketing Associate is not limited to just one job function. The responsibilities that they have can vary from project to project. This has provided me with more insight into the different types of roles and responsibilities that I could perform in the future.

A Day in the Life

Reflecting back to my first day at BlueFletch, it was one of the most memorable days of my time at work. My first day was a Friday and every Friday a company-wide status update is held to promote unity among the workers.  Everyone stands in a large circle and recites what they worked on during the week and one thing that they learned during the week. When it was my turn to speak I introduced myself and told everyone about a Manhattan real estate trend I had learned about earlier in the week. When I was finished a few other people went until everyone in the circle had finished. I assumed that since everyone in the room had gone we would all promptly return to our desks and get back to work. I was wrong. After we finished up everyone headed to the kitchen where there was a catered breakfast waiting on us. I was very surprised because I wasn’t aware that every Friday breakfast (and sometimes lunch) was brought in for everyone to enjoy. During breakfast that day I began to really get to know my co-workers. They were from a wide range of backgrounds and education levels, but they were all very intelligent and kind. Everyone that I interacted with made me feel welcome and included. The individuals that work here are great. Read More

Retail Insights from the Amazon Go Store

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The problem with my typical convenience store experience is that I wind up in the checkout line behind the guy who is indecisive on his cigarette selection, then can’t remember his wife’s lottery numbers, and finally wants to pay for everything in pennies. This experience is the opposite of the convenience that I am looking for.

Amazon’s Solution

Amazon appears to have found a way to solve my problem through the magic of technology. You walk into their new Amazon Go store, grab your groceries, and you just walk out.

I recently had the chance to stop by the Amazon Go store in Seattle and try out this experience. While there wasn’t anything super fancy about my shopping trip on the surface, there were several observations that stood out to me when I took some time to reflect back on the experience.  A number of these items should be very relevant to retailers as they start to think about how technology is going to impact their store experience over the next few years.

The Amazon Go Store Experience

The general premise of the Amazon Go store is that you:

  1. Download the “Amazon Go” app that links to your Amazon account
  2. Scan a barcode on the app to enter the store
  3. Pick items off the shelf.
  4. “Just Walk Out”
  5. <magic happens here>
  6. You are charged for the items a few minutes after you leave the store.

During my visit, I did my fair share of picking up items off the shelf to look at them and then returning the items to the shelf. I was not charged for any of the items. I also “walked out” with multiple items of the same type and it was able to accurately count my picks. I received a notification about 5 minutes after I left the store that accurately displayed the items I had just walked out with.

 

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BlueFletch Named Atlanta’s Best & Brightest Companies to Work For

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Atlanta, GA – May 17, 2018  BlueFletch, award-winning leader in innovative mobile technology solutions is proud to announce it has been selected as 2018’s Atlanta’s Best and Brightest Companies to Work For. Atlanta’s Best & Brightest is awarded by the National Association of Business Resources (NABR).

The Best and Brightest Companies to Work For® competition identifies and honors organizations that display a commitment to excellence in their human resource practices and employee enrichment. Organizations are assessed based on categories such as communication, work-life balance, employee education, diversity, recognition, retention and more.

At BlueFletch, we’re thrilled to be named one of Atlanta’s Best and Brightest for the fourth year in a row. It’s a testament to our leadership, our amazing team and our commitment to keeping innovative HR initiatives as a touchstone of our corporate culture. BlueFletch’s dedication to employee excellence includes flexible work hours and the ability to work at home, a commitment to continuing education and team outings organized for maximum fun and team bonding. Communication is king at BlueFletch and the secret to our success. We’re proud to know that listening to and learning from our team members is the reason we’ve been awarded this honor.

BlueFletch will be honored at the Best & Brightest Awards Gala will be held June 28th at the Atlanta Marriott Marquis.

 

About the National Association of Business Services

Established in 1996, the National Association of Business Services (NABR) fosters a collaborative environment in which companies and leaders learn best practices, trends and vital information benefiting the company and its employees well beyond the finances. Through the Best and Brightest programs, the National Association for Business Resources provides specialized business services, education and resources for businesses throughout the United States.

Starting a Project the Right Way

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Workshops are an easy way to get projects off to the right start, which is one of the many reasons why BlueFletch encourages these engagements.

If setup and run correctly, these sessions can reveal the client’s needs, business goals, and written assumptions, while also allowing your team to better determine the cost, effort, and risks of a project. Ultimately, the goal of a workshop is to define the project roadmap and help stakeholders move from uncertainty to certainty.

Sure, there are some scenarios where a workshop may not be necessary; for example, if you have worked with a client before, know their working style and have clear documentation of the project goals, a workshop session may not be the best use of everyone’s time. However, if you’re working with a prospective or new client, workshops should strongly be encouraged. If a workshop doesn’t take place, you run the risk of misconstruing project objectives, scope and deliverables, slowing down a project (you can cover in one workshop what you might cover in 5 shorter meetings), missing an opportunity to showcase your team’s expertise and thought leadership, and most importantly – getting into business with a client that doesn’t jibe with your company’s principles and culture.

If conducted properly, workshops can bring a high level of clarity into the conversation, enabling you to understand the project requirements, functional specifications, content modeling, solution architecture, and so on. But to run an effective workshop, a degree of preparation and strategy is required beforehand.

Here’s some key points to consider leading up, during, and after the workshop:

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Determining the Appropriate Test Strategy for Your Project

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Congratulations! After extensive meetings to finalize requirements and solidify designs and many intense hours of coding, what once existed as a potential solution to a client need is on its way to becoming a fully tangible mobile or web-based application. I know you are so relieved. Your completed application will soon be in the hands of your desired users. You are so excited to give them an awesome product! They are going to be so happy with it that they’ll tell everyone they know how much they appreciate your hard work!

But don’t celebrate quite yet. No… Put down the champagne… Not. Yet. For your application to be a success you must first conduct a series of tests to ensure it works. The Quality Assurance Analyst is responsible for confirming the overall behavior, aesthetic, and performance of the final product. We’re the people responsible for making sure that the reality matches the agreement you made with the client. The QA Analyst will perform this feat of magic by implementing functional test cases based on the requirements, assessing UI test cases based on the designs and user flows, evaluating performance, load, and stress, and testing unknown- unknowns.

QA testingThe Quality Assurance effort may, nay, MUST look different depending on the size of the project. Determining the right testing effort hinges upon the complexity of the application built, the length of time allotted for development and testing and the need for testing the performance of an application. Imagine that you are a University research team needing an application to effectively test a scientific hypothesis in 4 years, or a small startup that needs a proof-of-concept application to obtain funding from a VC in 2 months. You will have different requirements for your application and in the types and extent of your testing than a Fortune- 500 corporation that requires a suite of applications for use in all of their stores and warehouses created over the course of a year with continuing maintenance after deployment. Goldilocks would agree that to get your solution “just right” you need an understanding of what is important and necessary. Here we will discuss the guidelines BlueFletch uses to help our Quality Assurance Analysts perform at the highest standard of excellence

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