[Gta04-owner] Experimental userspace with web UI, connman, dasher etc.

Neil Jerram neil at ossau.homelinux.net
Fri May 9 19:49:37 CEST 2014

On 2014-05-09 02:15, Sebastian Krzyszkowiak wrote:
> Hi,
> On Fri, May 9, 2014 at 1:46 AM, Neil Jerram <neil at ossau.homelinux.net> 
> wrote:
>> For me the great thing about the GTA04 is how I can experiment with 
>> it.
>> It's wonderful that we have QtMoko and Replicant, but it's also fun to
>> try creating a system from scratch.  I'm particularly interested in a
>> few things:
> Yes, it's great, but it's truly awesome only when someone actually
> uses this possibility! :)

Many thanks for your commenting!

>> - A userspace that is more like standard GNU/Linux than QtMoko or
>>   Replicant; for example by using Xorg for display, and more generally
>>   by reusing useful components where they already exist instead of
>>   reinventing lots (e.g. oFono, offlineimap).
> That's why I've been always using SHR on my Freerunner - it provides
> much more standard GNU/Linux experience while still being somewhat
> mobile optimized.
> However, is there any particular reason why you mentioned oFono
> instead of freesmartphone.org?

Well, I have not done exhaustive research, but:

- The FSO community appears to me a bit unpredictable.  For a while 
there is a burst of activity, then maybe nothing for a year, and then 
maybe someone will decide to rewrite the whole thing in another 
language, instead of fixing/polishing the last remaining problems.

- Current FSO is written in a language (Vala) that I'm not personally 
familiar with, and for which I recall hearing anecdotes about people 
having trouble getting a toolchain working.  Possibly this isn't true 

- FSO as a project tries to do too much: fsodatad, fsoaudiod, 
fsonetworkd, fsopimd etc.  That's exactly the kind of empire-building 
"forklift" solution that really puts me off.  fsogsmd is fine (in 
principle), but can I use it on its own?  Also I wonder how hard it will 
be to connect an fsogsmd data connection into Connman.

> I think that besides of fsogsmd (direct oFono competitor, which
> actually came long before it) you might want to look at other FSO
> daemons like fsodeviced or fsousaged. Depending on how low-level you
> want to get with your DIY stuff, they might be very useful and they
> IMO fit quite well into standard GNU/Linux ecosystem. They're even
> packaged in Debian.

OK, thanks for the tip.  I'll take another look at those three.  Is 0.12 
the latest release?

>> I've been _very_ slowly working on this and have just recorded and
>> posted a video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d-b8kAdtHko.  
>> Apologies
>> in advance that the audio quality is so appalling!
> Thanks for sharing it *now* - just as I gather material for a local
> OpenPhoenux talk I'll be giving in a week, so you can expect some
> screens from your project to be shown there :) (BTW - if there's
> someone from Poland reading this - zapraszam na P.I.W.O w Poznaniu :)
> http://piwo.informatyka.org/ )


>> - The main UI pages are HTML+CSS+Javascript pages running in the 
>> "surf"
>>   browser, with two phone-hosted web servers: lighttpd for static
>>   content and my own Guile Scheme code for dynamic content.  The next
>>   piece of infrastructure I need here is server-side WebSockets so 
>> that
>>   the server can signal updates without the web page having to poll.
> Some time ago I've been also experimenting with similar idea, but due
> to lack of GTA04, I used Nokia N900 for that (actually, it was
> N900/Freerunner hybrid, as I launched GUI on N900 and backend on
> Freerunner, cause it was easier for me to properly set up FSO for
> Freerunner's modem :D)
> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jKyK-h4i_wM
> Browser here was fullscreened Chromium (launched in Debian chroot) and
> backend based on node.js, which was communicating via dbus (forwarded
> to another, off-screen Freerunner) with fsogsmd.
> Great job, looking forward to future progress!

Thanks, I very much appreciate your comments and encouragement, and hope 
to provide more news soon.


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