[kwlug-disc] Apple Rocks! No linux tablets?

Johnny Ferguson hyperflexed at gmail.com
Sun Jul 18 06:17:44 EDT 2010

On 07/16/2010 10:32 AM, Raul Suarez wrote:
> My thought on what has been said:
> I like Free software not because it is always better feature by feature,
> but because it is better on the main feature I care about: Freedom.
> Let's not fall in the trap of measuring success based on proprietary
> values, FLOSS has a different set of values.

I suppose this falls under freedom (partially design), but I like it 
because it breaks everything down into small modular chunks. Often, the 
most programming one has to do to be useful is a shell script.

> OpenMoko didn't fail because it was "clunky" as it has been said. All
> prototypes are clunky. It "failed" because no one with deep pockets saw
> the opportunity and helped it grow. But ultimately, did it fail? I am
> not sure, it was a proof of concept and it proved it quite well. Were
> the first cars a failure because they were clunky?

I guess I might have been harsh to suggest that "clunkiness" was the 
only part of its downfall. I say downfall in the sense that it didn't 
succeed in any kind of meaningful market penetration. It did a lot to 
push forward the idea that complicated objects could be created with an 
open-source ethic.

But to defend my claim of its clunkiness, the thing is shaped in a 
massively illogical way. I guess some people might thing the circular 
ends are "cool", but in my mind they look like a total waste of space. 
And actually, they look quite dumb.

While they do provide all the CAD and schematics, it's a little beyond a 
hobbyist to modify that design and create a new prototype. At that 
point, I guess we'd hope for someone to come in with money. But isn't 
that what happened with the open moko? I don't see how that could have 
been put together by a single hacker (unless they were loaded). So we 
threw money at it, and it still failed.

Technically the project was quite impressive, I just think they failed 
from a design angle.

At the same time, I wonder if the freedom we see in phones is reflective 
of the lack of freedom we see in cell phone plans and wireless data 
services. I'd love to be able to SSH and rsync with my phone, but at the 
cost of current data plans, would it even have meaning?

I'm just a bit sour over how close the open moko came... and then they 
put it in that awful shell. I remember hearing about the project in 
infancy, but ever since I saw those pictures I've cried myself to sleep 
every night

> Raul Suarez
> *snip*


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