Survey about the Touchscreen

Al Johnson openmoko at
Sat Nov 22 13:28:04 CET 2008

On Saturday 22 November 2008, Anton Persson wrote:
> Hi,
> I think this is the best argument for the need of a precision stylus yet.
> However, as I see it, if you make this argument it means that you want
> a phone that works just like your desktop computer, but which you can
> carry along easily.. Maybe an EeePC is better suited?

I have an Aspire One, but it's too big to carry all the time. I'm looking for 
something to replace my old and dying Psion 5. I had high hopes when EPOC32 
became Symbian that a suitable smartphone would appear, but one of the first 
things they did was to remove the office type apps.

> The current OpenMoko compromise is not suitable for running a spreadsheet
> application or a word processor.

For you maybe, but Abiword and Gnumeric are working fine for me.

> If you want those applications then you 
> need to have some sort of keyboard. When the Ilume keyboard is active
> you only have perhaps 60% left of the screen. That means your application
> only have _half_ a VGA display. This practically eliminates the pro that
> people here have been bringing up, the full VGA display.

The Psion's only half-VGA and it works fine there. The Psion does make better 
use of the screen space, but that's an application issue.

> Then add the fact that 
> using the Ilume keyboard with a spreadsheet is, well, daunting. I can't
> imagine the pain I would feel if I had to go through that ordeal.

For you maybe, but it's fine for me in light use. If I need to do anything 
heavier there's always the Bluetooth keyboard.

> So yes, the current situation makes it easy to _run_ ye old' X applications
> we all love on the desktop... But _using_ them in this setup.. I don't
> think so.
> If you think I'm wrong, could you please tell me in which situations you
> really
> could use application X or Y on your OpenMoko? And I mean in a situation
> where you would not have easy access to your EeePC in your back-pack.

Exactly the same situations where I use them on the Psion, probably more 
because I would carry it in situations where even the Psion is too big. When 
I first got the Psion I found myself using it in many more situations than I 
had expected, simply because it was there and it worked.

> On the other hand, if you add a multi touch capable LCD panel, then you
> would
> enable software developers like myself to develop a whole range of new
> applications that are _not_ possible on a desktop or on the current
> OpenMoko...
> Applications that you will never see on the current OpenMoko.
> (I'm still not ruling out the possibility of a multi touch enabled
> resistive screen,
> but I never heard of such a thing...)

I've never seen a commercial one, but I don't think it presents too many 
technical hurdles. unfortunately Openmoko aren't big enough to push a 
manufacturer to make such a thing, unlike Apple.

>     Best regards
>        Anton Persson
> On Sat, Nov 22, 2008 at 1:26 AM, Leonti Bielski <prishelec at> wrote:
> > Why do we need capacitive display?
> > We still are not going to solve hanging up during the call - because
> > capacitive screen does it too - the only way to avoid that is by doing
> > it in software.
> > Someone said - it will be a good motivation to make programs more
> > finger-friendly. What I like about Freerunner is that I can find some
> > program, compile it and use it straight on Freerunner. With the
> > capacitive screen we can forget about most gtk, fltk apps, just
> > because they need stylus to be used. Do we really want to have a
> > system that is based on linux, but looks like every other phone
> > platform?
> > Now imagine we have calc sheet application on the phone. Whis the
> > resolution of FR we can see really a lot, and what is important we can
> > manipulate cells in it. Can you do it with your finger? (with the
> > capacitive touchscreen you can't even use your fingernail).
> > What I mean is that  the ability to use other objects to manipulate
> > the screen is an advantage, not a disadvantage.
> >
> > Leonti
> >
> > _______________________________________________
> > Openmoko community mailing list
> > community at
> >

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