Good bye, Maemo. Hello, Android

android, maemo 8 Comments

Now that I got HTC Desire, I bid adieu to my true and trusted n810. I owned it for quite a while – and I it was a very good friend of mine.

So, now let me check if that google phone is as good as they say… First things to notice (beside obvious excitements, I am not going to list them): poor support for syncml and …. Android Market only provides “free” section in Ireland! No way to get something non-free (not that I need that immediately, but still). That’s outrageous, with all major Irish providers selling Android phones! What does make .IE worse than the other island in the eyes of google (having huge office in Dublin, FWIW)?

Ruby on Maemo: second coming

maemo 6 Comments

Some while ago I said farewell to Ruby on Maemo. Now, Ruby is really there on Maemo! Great thanks to Faheem Pervez who made it (and he’s a very responsive guy, I must admit)! Ruby, along with hildon/gtk/… bindings are now in extras repo, available to everyone! I could finally build my little toy prefcalc and upload it to extras too.

Faheem, I really owe you a pint!

Ruby on Maemo: RIP, kinda…

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(Ranting and mourning…)

I like that language. I like that open platform dearly (reserving some comments regarding Fremantle availability on n8x0). And some while ago I was happy to find that I could do some ruby hacking for maemo. Hurray. There were some incomplete implementations for n800, finally the version from rubyx.co.uk got ported to n810. And … the process stopped. Paused, I thought… The debs are still there, in their little repository. Sources (for ruby-hildon binding) … well, for some while you can live without them.

I wanted to put my little app into now-standard extras repo. Nokia offers documented workflow for doing that. But … there is no ruby in extras, so my debs simply could not be build. At that point I started looking for a contact with the lad who was cool enough to do ruby-hildon – in order to ask him for making a final step, publishing sources and putting the code to extras. Thanks to the colleagues, I quickly found that I have to talk to Tom Swindell AKA alterego (#maemo, freenode.net). He turned to be a sensible guy, he agreed with all my proposals. It was March 27, he was going to do things within a week. And … nothing happened so far. The only result I got is that he seems to be ignoring me now (that I discovered about a week after our initial chat)…

I could think it is about me being overly annoying and pushing (which sometimes I truly am). But I got hints from other people, telling me I am not the first one trapped in that scenario. Other people tried before, same sequence, same result.

So, I think all I can do is give up at this point (as other people did). If anyone (not ignored by alterego yet) would have time and interest to continue chasing that rainbow – I can only wish him all the luck in the world… Or, even better, if someone has time and skills (which I do not have so far) to redo ruby-hildon binding and build all the necessary packages – I would be soooo grateful.

Heh…

apps[ruby][maemo] += prefcalc

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One cannot say that ruby is a popular language for maemo platform.  Nevertheless, I spent some time on prefcalc. This is basically calculator for quite popular (at least in ex-USSR) card board game. It is just a calculator, not a way play the game (no AI…)

Version 0.3 should be generally usable on your average desktop linux (if you install .gem) But on maemo… It seems ruby port still has some way to go till becoming stable. Every now and then I keep getting error messages (+crashes) regarding “object allocation during garbage collection phase”. Dear lazyweb, is there any bugzilla to report these things? At least bugs.maemo.org does not have anything about ruby :(

PS Well, if you still want to test it on your tablet, take the code from SVN

PPS I know, there is Java-based program for the same purpose: prefcount.

Maemo-related misc

maemo, xkeyboard-config 5 Comments

First, I would like to thank Nokia for ongoing efforts to develop the maemo platform. But what I do not quite understand is the silence regarding future software updates for maemo for n8x0. Will software “version 5″ be available for us (officially or some kind of “hacker edition”)? Will it give us any benefits (all innovations listed so far are related to the new hardware)? May be, that info is already slipped somewhere – but I did not see it.Second, I just made first commit to xkeyboard-config from n810. Big thanks to the people who built git on maemo (well, GUI would be nice to have, but it is not critical). The missing piece in the “xkeyboard-config maintenance on n810″ puzzle is the old “patch” utility – I could not find it, searching high and low. Funny enough…  If I do not find it, I’ll have to build it.

Ruby/Maemo

maemo 2 Comments

It seems Ruby is not available on Maemo any more. maemo.rubyx.co.uk is down for a long while. What a pity – it would be a great language for the platform :(

Misc

General, maemo 1 Comment

Regarding recent discussions related to (D)VCS for GNOME, I think people might fight interesting results of the voting on highly popular Russian Linux site (analog of Slashdot). The comments is all in Russian, but everyone can read and interpret the results… (Just in case you care to follow the link, “Не использую”=”Do not use”). May be, staying with the current Subversion is not a bad idea, after all?;)

Yesterday, I reformatted internal n810′s flash from FAT32 to ext3. Why? Because root partition is too small and crouded. Now, I have several Megs of canola2 covers, this is too much for my small root…

BTW, I could not find the way to make canola use non-default place for disk covers (and symlinking to FAT32 partitions does not help – there are some issues with Russian dirnames).

Disappointment of the week

maemo 3 Comments

Maemo Diablo SDK cannot be installed on Ubuntu/x86_64. But I could install Chinhook, I remember! How has that regression happened?..

A bit of love for the tablets

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First, a bit of advertising (unpaid, of course;)). Proporta makes really nice cases for mobile devices. I got this for my kid, that for me and that for my darling wife. The velvet(?) case Nokia provided for n800 is simply <censored>. They made it much better for n810 – but still, very far from perfect. So, if you like leather (like I do), my recommendations… The only issue I found so far – there is no space provided for storing the screen-wiping cloth…

I finally found time to organize music retrieval – from my home server into my tablet. The solution of course is rsync-based (now that we have nice grsync UI). On the server, I created a directory (“staging area”) which contains nothing but several symlinks to some directories in the media storage area of the server. rsync server allows read-only synchronization from this staging area (only for some particular IP, just in case…). So once I execute corresponding profile in grsync – all the music from symlinked directories is pulled or updated to the tablet.

A couple of minor things to care about. First, chrooting should be disabled for that rsync server entry (otherwise symlinks do not work). Second, I got funny issues rsyncing into FAT32-formatted microsd. It pulled all files every time – there is some problem with timestamps. Once I started using –size-only option, everything is working just perfect.

The rsync server configuration entry is as  follows:

[lyava2]

        path = /mnt/array1/share/sync/lyava2
        comment = Sync area for n810
        hosts-allow = lyava2
        read-only = true
        use chroot = no

The rsync command line is

rsync --recursive --copy-links --verbose --compress --size-only rsync://bill:10873:lyava2

(Non-standard port is used because built-in rsync in my Buffalo NAS has its config file rewritten every time I change sharing settings through the Web UI – so I have two instances of rsync).

DHCP+NTP and various OSes: Ubuntu, OS2008, …

General, maemo 5 Comments

I am trying to establish my own time server in the home LAN.

First I configured a couple of Ubuntu instances (matter of adding “ntp-servers” to request specified in /etc/dhcp3/dhclient.conf)

Unfortunately, out of the box OS2008 ignores NTP server provided by DHCP. In order to enable that functionality, I had to add a couple of lines into /etc/udhcpc/udhcpc.script:

[ -n "$ntpsrv" ] && echo "server $ntpsrv" > /etc/ntp.conf.dhcp
/usr/sbin/ntpdate-debian

My next question is how to make MacOS X use that information (and check MSWin btw)

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