Small evaluation,city: 4 Internet Cafes, 3 Copy Shops, 2 Photo services; university: 1 library , 1 computer room

Richard Franks spontificus at
Wed Nov 29 21:40:25 CET 2006

On 11/29/06, Robert Michel <openmoko at> wrote:
> *IDEA*
>   Wait, because these systems support USB mass storage device - couldn't
>   we use a normal browser and on download to a FIFO file and an upload to
>   a   FIFO  to FIFOs on our server? So no local installation, nor Java
>   support (I would have doubts that Java will be allowed to access the
>   USB mass storage device, especialy not a USB network device...)
>   So with this trick we could run an SSH tunnel via the FIFOs and would
>   have Internet connection on our NEO at all these locations :))
>   This would avoid the need for and USB eterneth adapter and the best:
>   - Our device would be charged during visiting the internet cafe
>   - no softwareinstallation on the workstation neccesary
>   - no network configuration
>   - AND it would work with other people PC/Laptop as well - beeing on
>     the campus / caffe / airport lounge where other use Wlan - just
>     ask them to plug in your USB cable and use a ssh tunnel over
>     bidirectional "webbrower to USB mass storage device" routing
>   I thing this "hack" would need some keep alive packed from time
>   to time ;)

A possible problem with the FIFO-file for networking idea is that it's
a bit trickier to determine exactly when the PC side will send data to
the Neo, instead of caching the file locally. Or maybe I don't
understand the implementation of your idea?

How would the browser 'know' how to automatically use a FIFO-file?  If
I'm in a web-cafe, I hook my Neo into the USB, point the PC browser to
my trusted server.. there's a link missing:

Now.. you could hack the PC-side to write-immediately to the USB
device, but files are not FIFO in the ring-buffer sense.. that could
be hacked on the Neo end.. hmm.. I guess the results stream could be
just that - the equivalent of downloading a file of unknown size. To
upload (Neo-Server) requests.. that may be more tricky.. because you
want to upload without continuously hitting the 'file upload' dialogue
-- a fetch will (IIRC) see a file of X bytes, and upload just those X

Still not sure about the Neo-PC-Server communication path, although
the Server-PC-Neo path is easier but with some hacking.

Oh wait. You mean hosting the HTML file(s) on the Neo? By pointing the
PC browser to the HTML file on the Neo's memory, you could in effect
set up a meta-refresh every second or so, or use AJAX to read files
(requests) from the Neo's memory, and pass them on to the external
Server as subsequent requests.

GWT has a nice feature whereby it regards return requests as asyncronous events.

All it would require is javascript support.



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