Articles by Crackberry Kevin on Manitoba's SuperStation CJOB
Thanks to Richard Cloutier over at CJOB for having me on his radio show this morning.  We had a grand ole time talking about  If you head over to the Audio Vault , you can listen to the show.

Choose the March 7th, 10am segment.  The piece is about 5 minutes in length, and starts 35:15 into the live replay feed.

Hurry Hard!!!! Curling for your BlackBerry

Hurry Hard!!!!  Curling for your BlackBerry

For all those BlackBerry-abusing Curling Fans out there (and yes we know you are mainly in Canada, and mainly in Winnipeg at that!), this week marks the 2007 Tim Horton's Brier, which this year is being played at the Copps Coliseum in Hamilton, Ontario (not that far away from RIM's headquarters!).

In honor of the occassion I thought I would bring everyone's attention to a game that's been on my berry for nearly nine months now - Curling Challenge. Having grown up in a rural town in the middle of Canada, I did a lot of curling in my youth, teens, and right up into my early twenties (there's not a lot to do during a Manitoba winter but Curl, Skate, and Snowmobile). As a result of my longstanding  committment to the sport (we'll cover that debate in another blog post, but curling IS an OLYMPIC sport), I skipped the trial period and paid the $4.95 for the electronic version upfront.

For BlackBerry gaming novices, Curling Challenge will be a welcome change from Brick Breaker. But for avid curlers who spend their evenings and weekends in curling clubs tossing stones and chugging Mooseheads and OVs between games (or during!) Curling Challenge will likely leave you wanting for more.

The game play is easy to learn. Setting up shots from the hack takes only a few clicks - choose your throwing weight on the meter with a quick click of the trackwheel, take your aim for the broom with a scroll of the trackwheel, and finally select whether you are throwing an in turn or out turn (if you're not sure what an in turn or out turn is it would probably be best to move onto the next blog post!). From there, the rock goes spinning down the ice, and unlike playing with with real people, you will never have to worry about missing the broom - the delivery and release is always nice and smooth.

Is the rock down on weight or running a little tight? Clicking the trackwheel gets the sweepers in full motion, as denoted by the hokey broom icon shown in the top right corner of the screen (seriously...I'm not sure if the graphics guys working on the game have ever seen a curling broom before, but the graphic they used made me laugh - it's more like a Mario Brother's-styled paint brush). It'll take a few ends to develop the aim and sweeping finesse to get a rock to the button or make a take out, but by the time you get to the 5th end break you'll be a sniper and showing that computer who's boss. You also have the option to pass the berry back and forth with a friend if you want to play against a person instead.

Where the game starts to fall short for me is on the realism.  I don't think anybody ran the ice algorithms passed Hans Wuthrich (world's greatest curling icemaker) for approval. He would surely have a heart attack (or the players would kill him) if the rocks at the World's last year curled the way they do in Curling Challenge. The curl towards the centerline with an in-turn/out-turn is fine, but once a rock crosses center LOOK OUT - it's into the boards before you know it.  Not even Steve Gould (known CrackBerry addict) and Ryan Fry on the brushes could hold these rocks straight. Suffice to say, making close-to-the board takeouts will be your greatest challenge. (Side Note - While we're on the topic of curling, incase you were wondering where our resident genius has been the fast few days, Tom has actually been in Hamilton working on the Brier ice - Tom designed the wireless environmental monitor system used at all of the top curling events.  Check it out at

Rules such as the Free Guard Zone have been omitted from Curling Challenge, as well as the ability to sweep your competitor's rocks once they cross the back tee line. For people new to curling this won't be an issue, but assuming most of the people who will download/buy this game are familiar with curling, then I'm thinking this should be a consideration in the next release of Curling Challenge.

The last area to improve upon? Strategy.  This isn't the game to play if you're hoping to learn how to curl like Kerry Burtnyk. The computer is good at drawing to the button,  and if you miss your shots is good at piling more rocks in the house and even guarding them, but as soon as you make some hits, draw to the sides or throw up some junk the computer gets baffled and misses a lot.

Still, the game is a lot of fun!  In nine months of game play I don't think I've ever actually played a full game (I'm not even sure if they are 8 or 10 end games - I usually get tired by 6), but I have taken four 7-enders in a row and been up 34 - 0 after six ends so I think that could be written down as a victory in anyone's book.

For now I'm going to give Curling Challenge three stars out of five.  What would it take to make it a homerun?  Fix up the realism and make it playable over the wireless net. Man O Man, I know a lot of people who would spend days at their berries playing this if there was an online bonspiel mode. 

Game: Curling Challenge

My Rating:  *****
(3/5 stars)

Played On: BlackBerry 8700R 

CNET's Review of the BlackBerry 8800

Since we're still waiting to get our hands on an 8800, we'll have to direct you in the meantime to CNET's can't argue with an 8.0/10!  Good job RIM!

Read CNET's Review Here. featured @

eWeekA big Hello, Happy Birthday and Thank You go to Wayne Rash over at eWeek who took the time to chat with me this week about Wayne told me his birthday present from eWeek was that he had full reign to pick a fun story he personally want to do and put it on his show, and bada bing bada boom he chose us!

You can find the Wayne's Wireless Wired podcast featuring here.

Thanks for the help in spreading the word Wayne!

the Confess Your Addiction and WIN Giveaway!

"Confess Your BlackBerry Addiction" by Registering with and you will automatically be entered to win.

The Grand Prize winner will have the choice between Getting A Fix! or Getting Some Rehab! (packages valued at $2,000!).  We're also having a number of early bird draws with awesome prizes, so register now for multiple chances to win!

* * Click Here For Full Prize & Contest Details * *

Already a member of Then you are already registered to win!

New to
Click here to find out what the #1 site for BlackBerry Users & Abusers is all about! Confess Your Addiction and join the growing CrackBerry community - Click here to Register Now!

Registration only takes a minute and is FREE, so what are you waiting for?!

Network World AsiaI had a nice interview today with Lalou Ramos of Network World Asia . We discussed and a host of topics surrounding the online space. One of the questions Lalou asked about is whether or not we have plans to offer the site in other languages. My answer was of course Yes!!!  But we currently don't have the in-house capabilities to make this happen. If there's anybody out there who would like to help us take to all corners of the globe in all languages, please be sure to contact us and help make it happen!

Check out Lalou's article here...  

Welcome! is Open for Business!

Read the official press release on PRWeb.
Read the official press release on 24-7 Press Release. 

Welcome to! We actually put the site up live just over a week ago so we could make sure everything was running smooth prior to our official launch, and in that time the site has received overwhelmingly positive reviews from the BlackBerry Users and Abusers who have managed to find their way here.

We're still working to add a few finishing touches to the site, but since things were over 98.6% there we simply could not keep quiet any longer.  The time to start spreading the word about is Now!

Here are a few links to get you started on your way:

1.  Our Official Welcome - explains what we're about!

2.  The Crack Team Story - explains how this site came into existence.

3.  The CrackBerry Store - downloads galore, plus any accessory you could ever want to buy for your Berry. If you need anything BlackBerry, think

4.  CrackBerry Forums - this is where registered members hang out and converse on all things CrackBerry.  Rumors, News, Help, and more.

5. The CrackBerry WAP Site - Check it out now on your PC.  This is the site you will get when you visit on your BlackBerry.  It's basically your portal to the mobile web - all the best sites that are viewable on your berry, plus lots of games, downloads and more. Download the desktop launcher (works on Pearl & 8700s) and you're never more than one click away from You will LOVE this site when it comes to killing time at the airport.

6.  Register Now -  Registering is free, and it gives you full access to all content areas of the site, full access to the forums, and allows you to create your FREE @ email address.  If you're a true BlackBerry User & Abuser, getting an is a must!  You simply choose any you wish, and then specify an address and any emails sent to your email will automatically redirect to the final destination you have chosen. Easy, Painless, and FUN.  The good names are going quick, so hurry!

There are nearly 10 Million BlackBerry Users out there.  We'd like to see 1 Million of them admit their addiction and become members of  We want to make this the biggest community of BlackBerry Users ever!  Register Now!  

Enjoy the Site! 

Update - Off to a Good Start!

Update - Off to a Good Start!

We have been running live for a few days now, and the initial response we have received from the blackberry addicts who have stumbled upon the site has been overwhelmingly postive.

I think members are loving the fact they can register an email address, and the action in the forums shows me that the blackberry community is eager to turn into a site they frequent on a regular basis.

I still consider the site to be in pre-launch mode.  We have some tweaks and improvements to make over the next few days that should really help with the the functionality and usability of the site. Once complete, our efforts will turn towards promoting and growing the awareness and content of  So if you can have some patience with the Crack Team over the next few days it will be very much appreciated.  If you notice anything really awry with the site, please don't hestitate to contact us.  And if you have any ideas or suggestions on how to make even better, feel free to stick them in the comments section of this post.

To all the people who have registered with the site, thanks for getting us off to a great start! Spread the word!  And if you haven't registered yet....what are you waiting for?!

The Prada Phone by LG - How Will I Convince My Girlfriend to Buy a BlackBerry Now?!

For the past year I have been trying to get my girlfriend Erika to buy a BlackBerry Pearl or the new 8800 when it hits the market. For the first 6 months the answer to my pleas was a flat out NO. But over the past few weeks, mainly thanks to my annoying non-stop talk of the upcoming launch of, her NO's turned into MAYBES and I could tell by next week the answer should be a YES. 

But yesterday, the unthinkable happened.  She discovered the Prada phone by LG. It was announced on January 18th, 2007, so it was sort of old news to me (read the official press release here), but it was news to her when she saw it online, and I knew the moment  her eyes fell upon that PRADA logo that my mission just failed. 

So RIM, if you're listening, can you please get your business development team working on a deal with Versace or Louis Vuitton.  Until then, I think you will be losing out on the business of at least one potential customer and I'm sure she's not the only one out there who values fashion as much as high-tech gadgetry.

First take, no excuses!  These Video Tip posts will get better with time, but I wanted to get one up here quick. This tip shows you how to install the desktop launcher onto your blackberry (works on 8700 series, Pearl, and should work on newer devices coming out from RIM too).  Also gives a quick sneak peak at the WAP site, which you should definitely check out!


BlackBerry 8800 Video!

Captured by Shiny Shiny , here's a peak at the new BlackBerry 8800 that was announced by RIM at the 3GSM World Conference.


RIM Officially Launches BlackBerry 8800

RIM Officially Launches BlackBerry 8800

CrackBerry Addicts Rejoice! After months of rumors, speculation and online debate, RIM has officially announced the launch of their new BlackBerry 8800 Smartphone. will dive into the features of the new 8800 Smartphone in the days and weeks ahead, but for now you can get your fill at RIM's official site - .  RIM's official press release for the new device can be found here. Goes Live! Goes Live!

To find out more about how this site came into existence and why, and who we are, click here for the full story.  In the meantime, here is a quick overview of what you can expect from the Crack Team and

Our aim is simple – we want to establish as the premier resource for anything and everything BlackBerry.  Whether you are at an airport with time to kill and want some games to play, need a replacement case for your Berry, want to stay on top of the latest news and rumours in the mobile industry, want to buy a Bluetooth headset but don't know which one to buy, or are not quite up to CrackBerry Addict status yet and need help figuring out how to use your BlackBerry, is the first place you go.

We view the BlackBerry as a serious device that also has a lighter side and we've built to reflect that.  We've done our best to keep the site simple and intuitive while providing all the features we thought a site with a name worthy of the "2006 Webster's New Word of the Year" award should have.

We've broken the website down into three main categories – Community, Forums, and Store.  Think Community for news, reviews, rumours, entertainment and useful information for new and experienced berry users alike. The Forum is your way to interact with other CrackBerry users  and the store will offer you the latest software, hardware accessories and downloads for every type of BlackBerry.

If you register with the site you have the option of setting up your free @ email redirector.  Set up and the system will redirect emails sent to your new address to any existing email address you specify.  It's simple. For those of you whose BlackBerry addiction has reached the point of unhealthy, be sure to check out the Rehab section.

We've built the wapsite as your portal to the mobile web.  Using the mobile browser on your wireless device, visit (or if you don't get automatically redirected).  The site features hundreds of links to the best mobile sites.  You can download the CrackBerry launcher (it installs a sweet icon onto your BlackBerry's desktop) to make it easy for you to use as your starting point on the mobile web.

Enjoy the site!