[Tinkerphones] eelo - LineageOS-based alternative smartphone OS

H. Nikolaus Schaller hns at goldelico.com
Wed Jan 10 09:06:45 CET 2018


Hi Arsenijs,

> Am 09.01.2018 um 15:07 schrieb Pičugins Arsenijs <crimier at yandex.ru>:
> 
>>>  I hope they consider working with existing libre and/or ethical hardware
>>>  vendors before starting something from scratch.
>> 
>> Yes, I also hope that all such projects would do research and find us
>> and ask for experiences before starting and announcing a new project...
>> 
>> But that never happens. Well, the NIH-syndrome is everywhere - and I admit
>> that I suffer it as well :)
> 
> Well, I've started a similar project, and I did do my research, and I did
> find you - I just never asked questions =) I've been folowing this ML from
> February 2017, and reading about Openmoko history from about the
> same time - till now.

So welcome to this list!

> Internet (including mailing lists' archives) still
> contains a lot of information, and most of it I don't have to ask
> anybody for - it's just more efficient, I don't have to bother anybody
> and ask people to retell things that I can find on forums or in the 
> mailing list history.

Ok, that is something I haven't though of.

But there is as usual a lot of "hidden" information not available to
desktop research which you can get only through asking people.They
either have additional links (google search has no creativity to
"jump out of the box") or tips and tricks which initially seem unrelated.

So please feel free to ask anything you like.

> 
> + one more reason for why nobody comes to ask is that,
> ultimately, projects make different decisions. For example,
> I'm working on ZeroPhone - a phone that doesn't even have a
> touchscreen display, and is a kludge compared to a
> proper single-PCB phone base. However, its hardware is
> optimized so that its parts can be sourced independently,
> and the phone then can be assembled manually. It also
> leverages the Raspberry Pi popularity&hardware support
> + uses Raspbian Linux as a base, so that its hardware and
> software is more familiar to people using it.

Yes, that is a different goal from why I am doing but it nicely
fits into the idea of this list/community/forum.

If you have something which should go to the www.tinkerphones.org
page, please raise your finger.

> 
> So, it's not that similar to Freerunner phones in terms of
> hardware, it won't run the same graphical applications
> and it, likely, won't be assembled in Europe. It has
> different goals - self-assembly option, for example,
> as well as giving access to the same Linux distro
> that Raspberry Pi enthusiasts are used to.

It seems that the common basis is Debian plus some bells and
whistles here and there.

> As a 
> drawback, it is pretty thick (and I can only shave
> off so much thickness off it by switching to pouch cells),
> and the battery life is not as good (20h on one charge).

To be honest, the GTA04 isn't much better. We are fighting
against very subtle kernel driver bugs which prevent SoC
components go down to deepest sleep states and reduce suspend
current consumption to the minimum. We know that the N900
using essentially the same SoC is better by factor 2-4.

> Nevertheless, it's an interesting experiment that other
> people are interested in, and it tries to approach open
> phones from a different angle. I'm working on it full-time
> now - as I'm preparing the hardware, software and the
> whole project for crowdfunding a manufacturing run
> of ZeroPhone kits (which is long overdue, but I have
> to balance the project with part-time jobs, too).
> 
> So, some things from Openmoko history apply to my
> project, and I hope that what I've learned is what's there
> to be learned. By the way, if there's something valuable
> I've found that I'd like to re-use, it's FreeSmartphone API
> I understand just how valuable it is to have a good API
> for app developers, and FSO seems to be a well-defined
> standard to follow.

Indeed. IMHO it is a pity that it is not used more widely
and maintained. The mailing list isn't very active either:

http://lists.goldelico.com/pipermail/fso/

> 
> I might not have learned everything, though - that's the
> problem with never asking, undoubtedly. If there's
> anything important that I haven't found or noticed, I'd
> love to hear about it. + sorry for this wall of text, I'm
> in a rush and might have missed some important point,
> or worded something the wrong way. =)

No problem. This letter is also a lot of value to others
who will in let's say 5 years build on your experiences
like you did on Openmoko etc. So please post from time to
time what you think is interesting (e.g. when your
crowdfunding starts).

> 
> Happy New Year to you all, too!

Same to you,
Nikolaus




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