A fascinating story not only about the development of MeeGo (and the decisions, compromises and changes along the way), but how products lose their way as they journey through the corporate machinery to get to market.

“The Harmattan UI was originally based on the Activity Theory principle, a frame of reference for studying human behavior and development processes…The system would adapt to the way the user interacts eith it, to ensure reciprocated interaction.

“…The people who became the directors of the user interface design in late 2009 didn’t understand the whole concept of the Harmattan UI and it was abandoned…Home view was [re]designed to be straightforward and simple. It would only contain a quick launch bar and an application launcher button (in the middle of the screen in the picture). Widgets were abandoned completely and lot of effort was put on multitasking. The UI was simplified largely.

“The user interface became very similar to competing smartphones in the market. Although the UI was cleaner and familiar looking for the developers, it wasn’t competitive.”

Link: The story of Nokia MeeGo (taskumuro.com)