Three Issues Causing PPM Managers Major Concern

People are upset with PPMIt would appear that the list of people upset with the popular online sports manager game, Powerplay Manager, is growing by the day, driven by frustration and a sense of unfairness.

Powerplay Mananger, arguably the internets #1 hockey and soccer manager games have created a true masterpiece with their system. The features far beat out their closest competitor and the game engine drives a competitive, and sometimes heartbreaking game experience.

But as good as game may be, there are issues that are causing some managers, even the experienced and most loyal managers, to re-think their participation in the game. And that concerns me.

Here are the big 3 issues that are causing grief amongst the managers, causing some to leave the game.

National Teams, or lack there of.

PPM have always said that in order for a country to have a national team, they must have their own league. This is fine for the majority, but there are always countries that will struggle to gain enough managers to get their own league; Australia and New Zealand are two such examples. We have great managers with brilliant players but due to the way PPM is programmed, we can’t have a national team. We miss out on the opportunity to represent our country, and as such, get the OTR gains that could come with that. We are a close knit group in Other World (hockey) and Oceania (soccer), and don’t actually want an Australian league, as it would mean losing many of our friends who we play with in our current leagues.

Vlady confirmed on the PPM forums today that this is not a programming issue, and is simply a policy decision.  This is very upsetting, as clearly there is a demand for this feature to be made available!

Credit Features, the extras that cost

Credit features have their place in the game, there is no arguing that. The problem here is that for every feature added to the pro pack, there appears to be 3 or 4 added as extra credit features; many of which are included in pro packs in similar games. Many loyal pro pack users are starting to opt out of paying for pro because of the alleged lack of support they feel they get from PPM. To the credit of PPM, the credit features do add incredible enhancements to the game and are still worth the cost, if of course, you can afford it after paying for pro pack, etc.

Pro Pack & Advertising

It’s really hard to believe i’m actually writing this, as in almost all other membership sites (games or not), if you pay for an upgraded membership it usually means you get little or no advertising. This is not actually an issue, or at least would not be an issue if people were not paying for the extra credit features already. But there is great news. If you use Firefox you can install the adblock extension which will completely remove all of the advertising.

Help Us

We would love your help. If you’re a manager at PPM and you believe that all countries should have a National Team please contact tuttle or vlady at PPM and tell them your thoughts. Hopefully, if enough people express an opinion on this issue PPM will think about changing the way the National Team system works. Thanks in advance.

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How You Can Get The New Facebook Timeline

One of the most anticipated launches of 2011 has to be the exciting new Facebook Timeline. Unfortunately, there has been no release date given as to when the Timeline will be rolled out globally, but did you know that you can beta test the Timeline yourself, today? The image below is my Facebook Timeline, which I captured just today. Click the image to view a full size version in detail.

Facebook Timeline

So how can you, the everyday Joe Blogs get your hands on the Facebook Timeline? All you need to do is register as an Open Graph developer on Facebook, and follow a few simple steps.

Luckily for us, Jeff Dunn at has put together a fantastic article that outlines the process in simple steps.

As the Timeline is still being developed, it’s important to note that:

  • Your Timeline is not live, so the general public will only see your regular profile
  • As the Timeline is in testing, it may be buggy
  • As the Timeline is in testing, loss of data may occurr
  • The Timeline rocks! (not so important, but i’m sure you’ll soon agree with me)

If you’re keen to see what Facebook have planned, don’t hesitate, get your Timeline testing page today!

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PPM Sponsor Offers Strategy: Marketing Manager Specialists

Staff MembersAs we fast approach the end of season 5 at PPM Soccer, it’s time to start thinking about preparing for the off-season, and the end of season sponsorship offers.

Specifically, one key factor your team will need are two good quality managers, specifically trained in marketing.

From the guide: 2. Marketing – this attribute indicates the ability to negotiate better contracts with general and media sponsors.

Depending on your managing style you will already have managers, so the question is how good are they, and how big an impact will they have on your potential offers?

My suggestion is to train or buy off the market 2 managers specifically trained in marketing (attribute 2). There are always plenty of managers on the market, but the prices tend to increase the closer to the end of the season we get, so i recommend you start looking now.

What are your thoughts on this strategy? Do you do something different? Leave your thoughts below.

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Highly Recommended: FourSquare API Plugin For WordPress

FourSquare API Plugin For WordPress

We have taken time to review an incredible plugin designed by NZGuru; the foursquare WordPress Plugin

Unlike other widgets which tend to use the foursquare RSS feeds to deliver your latest checkins, the foursquareAPI Plugin uses the API system to deliver a high quality, slick looking widget, complete with images and timestamps. 

In a nutshell, here is what the foursquareAPI plugin provides:

  • display the check-in timestamp
  • display the venues icon image and mayorships
  • display the venues stats
  • display your check-ins/badges on a Google map
  • display the badge description

NZGuru is also hard at work adding new features, which will include a full page template replacement system and customizable CSS.

This plugin can be seen live on the NZGuru website, and also on my own LizardInsider hockey blog. 

The plugin works better than anything I have come across thus far, and the constant updates show that NZGuru is working hard to ensure this is the single best go-to widget for WordPress users.

Click on the images below to view them in full size.

foursquareAPI Screenshot 1 foursquareAPI Screenshot 2

Not a member of foursquare yet?   Click here to create an account today, and don’t forget to checkin!

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Did Apple Steal Technology & Ideas? Who Really Stole From Who?

Steve Jobs never liked Android, that much has always been known. It is afterall a direct competitor to the Apple flagship product; the iPhone (and iPad).

Walter Isaacson, in his authorised biography of the recently departed Jobs sheds insight into how deep that dislike really went. An extract from his book reports Jobs as saying “I’m going to destroy Android, because it’s a stolen product. I’m willing to go thermonuclear war on this.”

Very passionate words from a very passionate man.

But who really stole from who?

Apple is in the process of suing several smartphone manufacturers who use the Android operating system, claiming breach of patents. Samsung, one of the biggest Android brands in the world was recently blocked from selling it’s Galaxy Tab 10.1 in Australia after Apple was granted an injunction. That case is ongoing, and Samsung are in the process of appealing that desicion, as well as filing counter-claims against Apple, involving claims that Apple stole technology created by Samsung.

But take a trip back in time, to when this all started; the original iPhone 3.

One of Apples biggest claims is that the iPhone style smartphone was their design, and all other similarly designed phones have “stolen” the idea from them. This is one of their arguments against Samsung with regards to their Galaxy Tab 10.1 and also the Galaxy S phone range. In fact, most touch screen smartphones right now tend to have the same slick style, but does that mean they all stole the idea from Apple? Absolutely not.

It’s very possible that the iPhone 3 was built on a design ALREADY in use by Samsung on their F700 smartphone (seen below).

Samsung F700 vs Apple iPhone

The F700 was first introduced in 2006 and went on sale in early 2007. The iPhone 3, using the allegedly Apple designed style was released on the market in mid 2007, almost 5 months AFTER the Samsung F700.

A report on the F700 vs iPhone 3 goes into a little depth about the style of the 2 phones. Both have similar style, both have touch screens, both have a single button and both have an icon display using a grid layout.

So who stole from who? The article best sums it up by saying: “The answer: no one is stealing from anyone. Apple didn’t invent icons, nor did they invent the grid in which they sit. They didn’t invent the rectangle. They didn’t invent the touchscreen. They surely didn’t invent the nice looking button sitting at the bottom. And last, but not least, they didn’t invent phones.”

Could Samsung file charges against Apple for the very thing Apple are accusing them of doing? Where does this end? Could Ford take Toyota to court for breach of design because their cars use 4 wheels and an engine? Where does the line between an original design and fair game start and finish?

Greg Hughes, creator of the wifi sync app
Greg Hughes with his Wifi Sync app icons

And then there is the story of Greg Hughes, a third-year computer science student who contacted Apple in May 2010 about an iPhone app he created; a wireless sync system that would allow your phone to sync with iTunes wirelessly. Apple rejected the idea claiming it was a security risk, so Hughes has been selling his app for the last year on Cydia, an online store for “jailbroken” phones.

When Apple recently launched iOS5, WIFI Sync was one of the big selling points that Apple has pimped the hell out of.

Greg Hughes was shocked and upset with the news about the Sync on iOS5. “I’d been selling my app with that name and icon for a year. Apple knew about it as I’d submitted it to them, so it was surprising to see that they had pinched it for iOS 5.” Greg Hughes is getting legal advice on the issue and plans to follow this up. “At the end of the day you have to stand up and defend your work,” he said.

From hardware to software, Apple have been very outspoken about other companies stealing their ideas, yet it appears that Apple may not be entirely innocent themselves.

Dear Pot, meet Kettle!

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Native Gmail App For iPhone Is Coming (rumor)

Native Gmail app for iPhoneAccording to recent reports, it is rumored that Google are working on a native Gmail app for the Apple iPhone.

MG Siegler reported the rumor, saying “Google is on the verge of launching their native Gmail app, multiple sources tell me. In fact, I believe it has already been submitted toApple for review. If it gets approved, it should be out soon. And I think it’s going to be approved.”

I think it’s safe to say that the very suggestion of a native Gmail app is enough to bring a smile to our faces. The problem is, a native email app for Gmail could be seen as direct competition for the core mail system that is integral to the iOS Platform.

“The native Gmail app will likely bring other key functionality as well: like Priority Inbox and one-click starring of messages.” says Siegler in the report, and goes on to say “Other possibilities include some of the stuff Google is about to roll out for Gmail proper: like contact icons, better threading, and deep searching functionality. Maybe there will even be some Google+ integration, which Google is also hard at work on for Gmail.”

A native Gmail app for iPhone would bring Apple in-line with other smartphone platforms such as Android, who have had a native Gmail app for some time now.

Social Media network Mashable is following this story closely and have contacted Google for confirmation. Watch for updates, as news of a native app would be very big news indeed for Gmail iPhone users.

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