2008.9 - Was Re: Third request: what *is* the warranty on the Freerunner?

Roland Mas lolando at debian.org
Thu Aug 14 14:18:31 CEST 2008

Jay Vaughan, 2008-08-13 22:47:28 +0200 :

>>  Oh come on.  After reading all your (and others') scary messages
>> about that, I decided to give it a try.  So I pointed my browser to
>> http://wiki.openmoko.org/wiki/MokoMakefile.  Half an hour later, I
>> had a build in progress.  Most of that half-hour was spent waiting
>> for stuff to download, and part of the rest was due to my running
>> the whole stuff in a particular isolated environment (cowbuilder
>> chroot, for those who care) with its own characteristics (stuff
>> runs as root, and I didn't have a home directory).
> great that its working for you, looking forward to future news of
> your .ipk URL's ..

  I'm more likely to provide *.deb, actually, but that's just because
I'm an arrogant, smug, elitist Debian bastard (and not ashamed of it,

>>  Of course, the build hasn't completed yet (I have a few *.ipk
>> already, but the webpage mentions 5 hours on a computer that's
>> rather faster than mine), but if pasting less than 15 commands
>> straight from a web page is too high a barrier to entry for
>> prospective developers, I doubt they'd be able to accomplish much
>> even if it was a single command to run.
> since where did i say that i couldn't follow the instructions on the
> wiki?

  You didn't, as far as I know.  You did, however, complain loudly
about how it's hard to keep up with them with regards to code changes
and build environments.  Which is what I was replying to: there's a
make target to update all of that in the MokoMakefile, so it's one
command to type.

> the issue is that there is no one stable, common, build system - or
> distribution channel - for developers to pop their stuff into, and
> with the moving targets of 'fso' vs. 'asu' vs 'om2007.2' vs
> 'underground' vs '&etc', its a bother.

  Choice in build systems isn't bad per se, as far as I know.  And
choice a definite bonus when it comes to distribution channels: I
wouldn't want the official feeds to contain random contributed
packages.  I don't have a problem with people adding unofficial
repositories and publishing the URLs, though.

  I do agree with the probably excessive multiplicity of targets, but
my feeling is that this is going to settle down.  OM2007.2 seems to
have entered maintenance-only mode, I expect ASU/OM2008.8 to follow
the same path, and I envision most of the momentum moving to FSO.  As
for the distribution system underneath, I'd be happy to see it migrate
to Debian proper, since that would gain us the whole Debian
repositories, build systems, tools and experience to build on, but
maybe that's just me dreaming (although I'm quite impressed with the
fact that the pkg-fso team has managed to prepare a working
Debian-based image with FSO and Zhone in a few days).

>>  Half an hour.  15 commands to copy and paste.  How much more
>> hand-holding does a developer need?
> please, do not assume i am a fool unless you would consider like
> countenance.

  Whoa, calm down.  I do not assume you are a fool.  I was just
pointing out a discrepancy between your loud complaints about the
barrier to entry, which looked scary to me, and how it's actually
rather easy to setup a development environment.

> its not the hand-holding or the trick makefiles.  its the dire lack
> of a dictator to rally around and form a federation ..  and as a
> result, actually, building apps for the phone *with* the phone is
> turning out to be, frankly, a lot more workable - and lightweight -
> than over a year of mokomakefile groupthink right about now ..

  One more reason that NIH-syndrome is evil.  Should have gone for
Debian right at the start :-)

  (In order not to degenerate into a DSW, here are my own
contributions so far: 1. a Python script to load and save contacts to
files in 2007.2, and 2. a failed attempt at another script to switch
from lock-and-suspend to lock-only when a call is active.  You win
hands down.)

Roland Mas

Why did the elephant cross the road?
Because it was the chicken's day off.

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