Time is the ultimae in precious and scarce commodities. With work and travelling up North to kayak, I spend most of my spare time away from a workstation. Hence the convenience of owning a N810. I can code and write anywhere!
Ok so I haven’t tried putting gcc or other c development tools on this tablet. While with Jalimo I can run Java code… I’m not sure on the feasibility of running Tomcat. And there is no way Eclipse will fit. Actually Tomcat would need an SDK, so running a full Java web development platform is most likely a no go. Instead I could set up a hosted test server.
Still I can edit the code itself. Originally I installed Vim. Then I tried PyGTKEdior and it works for me. Additionally I installed subversion. So now I can work on justCheckers while on the go.
With such a cold wet summer, I thought I would spend more time hacking. Yet this year spare time is a scarce commodity and most of that time I find myself far from a proper development workstation. Fortunately with an Internet tablet in my pocket, I can at least start on learning about Maemo development.
For an embedded device, the maemo platform is neither the easiest nor the hardest device to start hacking. Setting up the SDK on Ubuntu takes only a few minutes. In fact I also managed to setup Eclipse to do maemo development too. But I didn’t try to compile any source code so far.
Developing on Maemo, requires knowledge in both Linux and C programming. The N810 itself uses a heavily modified version of the 2.6.27 Linux kernel, Gnome and GTK. GTK seems to handle the GUI side of things in much that the same that Java Swing does. And I like the fact that GObject brings some semblence of OO programming to C. I’d prefer to learn Qt instead of GTK, but I guess I have to start somewhere. Judging by blog posts from KDE developers that got N810s at Akademy 2008, the state of Qt and KDE on Maemo is in its infancy.
In a recent conversation with Dan D’Alimonte, he suggested that I should think about reviving the justCheckers project as a web application. Considering the state of the codebase I work on a daily basis, the justCheckers codebase is very much maintainable. As a web application, the releases can happen faster and casual users can play with the program. And I’d like to play around with some more advanced Java web technologies. Now whether or not I actually revive the project is another matter. It is a definite maybe for now.
Technorati Tags: Justcheckers, java, maemo, internet tablets, gtk,
So far I’ve had some success at blogging at daily intervals. As you may have noticed that the brievity of my recent blogs. First, the device I blog from now doesn’t let my type as fast as a regular keyboard. Second I am concentrating on the science fiction novel I’m writing now. Just finished the rough draft of chapter 3.
I broke my Internet Tablet today. Not physically.
Rather I used Dolphin from KDE 4 for some file transfers yesterday. Me and my obsession running beta versions. And to add insult to injury, yanked out the cable without unmounting (safely removing) the device. Silly me.
Well now the internal memory is read-only. Dmesg reports filesystem panic, and fsck.vfat errors out. So it looks like I’ll need to backup and reformat that partition. But hey at least I learned to gain root access on the N810 (install rootsh and run sudo gainroot in the x-terminal.
A big thanks to johnx, and others on #maemo on irc.freenode.com for all the help.
Ok, I’m just gonna post a quick update as part of my resolution, to post daily. I reckon that my life is not as half boring as I make it out to be…
I surprised my system admin at work that my N810, is in fact a Linux device. It is true that there isn’t too many Linux of such a small form factor. Updating to the newest version was a great idea.
Also we played a round of soccer (European football). I played a fantastic game. Maybe a bit aggressive, but thats just my intense focus when I game. I would love to do this on a weekly basis.
These past few days, I’ve a bit panicky. So many new adjustments and things happening to me. I am still adjusting. Please bare with me.
While I’m writing this in Notes application instead of Blogger, I’m impressed with my new Internet Tablet. Not as powerful when not tethered to the seamy underbelly of the Internet, the N810 performs well as a handheld computing device. Even the thumb keyboard is quite comfortable. The device can seem a bit heavy at times. But I prefer a heavier sturdy construction, than a lighter flimsier one.
Ok it is not a phone. But that’s a good thing: I don’t have to pay for data charges, etc. That said, relying on open wireless LANs is not best way to go. I’ve seen interesting networking combinations involving USB-OTG cable, which I’d like to explore.
I like the fact that maemo (the operating system stack running the Internet Tablets) lets you run a large number of applications. I will report on some of them, once I upgrade to the latest version of Internet OS2008 later on tonight.
Last Thursday I got the chance to play with a Nokia N810 at the TigerDirect store in Mississauga. A pretty nifty device, but the price was not so nifty. So I ordered one via the Web. And hopefully it’ll arrive sometime today. Yay!
My initial review (after using for a few minutes) is that the N810 is a nice little device. I love the fact that I can carry an Internet-capable device in my pocket, without paying gigantic data transfer. Definitely useful to keep connected with people. And having a computing device that I don’t have to share is very useful.
A few negative points: the N810 loads slower than I thought. Faster than most Linux workstations, but slower than my Palm Pilot Tungsten E. The GPS doesn’t lock quickly. And tablet comes with a plastic stylus, instead of a nice rugged metal, rubber tipped stylus.
Getting to run on a Linux environment, means I’m familiar with the applications. Screen resolution is decent enough to handle the majority of sites. The slide-out keyboard is way more convenient than the infrared wireless one I have to tug along with my Palm. And there are a lot of apps already ported to it.
Overall I looking to playing on, working with and developing for the Nokia N810 Internet Tablet. I can hardly wait to get mine. 🙂
I haven’t blogged about myself in a bit. So here is an update on me:
Have less than a month left of my probationary period at work. All the signs, indicators and omens point towards my staying on as a fully privileged employee of VisionMAX Solutions. I am very pleased with this situation. I can’t stress how much I enjoy hacking away at a web application. My only rant is not being able to see the forest from the trees at times. And I’m outgrowing my aversion to spontaneous human interaction.
I’m still figuring out how balance work and life. I seem to be winning that battle. Actions and rituals smooth out over time, so long as no one turns my universe on its head. God promises not to. And people are too busy in-fighting. So nothing should change in that manner. Hopefully I’ll be able to take on more stuff in the future. Anyone following my journey through life on Facebook, don’t hold your breath. I’m migrating away from Facebook, since I don’t have any say in how my information and content is handled.
As noted earlier, I don’t blog (or journal) as much as liked to. But that just because I’m adjusting to everything nowadays. However, I do have success in my writing of prose. Right now I’m writing chapters 2 and 3 of a dark science fiction novel. I’ve uploaded all my typed up writing so far to Google Docs, for my own convenience. However that also means I can share my current drafts with anyone with a Google account. If you’re interested (and I know you personally), I’ll let you see what I wrote so far. Just e-mail or IM me.
Outside of work, I don’t do much coding. However I plan on getting involved with the KDE and maemo communities in the near future. I would love to learn C++ and further the state of art of both KDE and maemo. Watch this space for further details.
You got your update of Dorian already. Now go do something productive!