Community update

Yorick Moko yorickmoko at
Tue Jan 13 17:10:48 CET 2009

thanks for the update Minh!
hadn't heard about Gwaterpas
it's been added to opkg now btw

On Mon, Jan 12, 2009 at 3:36 PM, Minh Ha Duong <haduong at> wrote:
> Hi!
> This is the nineth Community Updates, January 12th issue.
> For the new year we interviewed Sean on everything that matters for the
> community: sales in 2008 were around the low five digits, om-locations is
> what remains of an ambitious mesh network project, and the most surprising
> development to him was the explosion of distributions. Back on the mailing
> lists, activity was rater slow during the first week of the year, but got
> more intense than ever after the holidays. Illume's keyboard received lots of
> localisations. reached a critical mass of packages. SHR and FSO are
> counting down toward their next milestone, while coding continues for kernel,
> drivers, Android and the like. It looks like the switch to 2.6.28 is going to
> happen soonish, before the switch to the Paroli phone stack.
> The newsletter is also available with links at
> Contents
>    * 1 Distributions
>    * 2 New applications
>    * 3 Ports and updates
>    * 4 Community
>    * 5 Hardware and drivers
>    * 6 Tips and tricks
> 1. Distributions
>    * SHR: According to Julien's latest on the SHR project blog, the baby is
> expected really soon now.
>    * Marek announced the new organisation of package and images repositories.
>    * Android: The latest compatible kernel has wifi and bluetooth working
> now. Suspend and reboot are still broken.
>    * FSO MS5 should branch out for really soon now (the roadmap says release
> January 31st, but they want a longer stabilization period this time). It will
> be the first milestone that will have support not only for GTA01 and 02, but
> also for the Motorola EZX A780. meeting minutes.
>    * Hackable:1 buildbot is up and running. Images are generated every
> morning around 4:00. Happy testing !
>    * User:Bytestore has updated assemblage 2008.12 from Russian community,
> work with gprs, headphone jack plug, ru keyboard and many other things were
> updated (download rootfs, see screenshots)
> 2. New applications
>    * LED clock When an Openmoko is sitting unused at night, turn it into an
> alarm clock with large 7-segment digits on a black background in landscape
> mode.
>    * GPRSsettings is a GUI script designed to change apn, login, dialnumber.
>    * Samuel's script for a toggle wifi icon.
>    * ylock 0.1 Python screen lock and low battery monits.
>    * AppManager 1.0.1 Zenity package manager.
>    * Mirko announced that pre-alpha Paroli was now packaged in testing.
> Development moved to their own domain: paroli-project hosts trac, git, blog
> and documentation.
>    * Kurt's Gwaterpas allows to use the Freerunner as a leveling tool.
>    * There are now 75 packages at Novelties include osmupdater
> (updates OSM maps directory), sortdesk (sorts the desk), MokoCard (flashcards
> learning aid), sms-sentry (query the unit's location by SMS, handy if it was
> just stolen), pyring (a key ring), EFpLayer (mplayer GUI), playstankontakarta
> (an icon displaying remaining credit with POLISH PLAY pre-paid phone
> provider), various illume keyboards and more. It was mentioned unofficially
> that Openmoko's community repository is going to be dismantled.
> 3. Ports and updates
>    * Lots of Navit activity. Distributions are kindly suggested to package
> the sample map separately from the main binary to conserve space.
>    * The opkg package manager development moved from OM svn to Google code.
> The recommended stable version is r172, there is a significant data
> structures+algorithm refactorization going on.
>    * Version 2.4 of orrery is now available. It has a new schematic Solar
> System View page, showing the position of the planets and our moon in their
> orbits, a new moon calendar, and a less ugly icon.
>    * The ZOMG! package manager is now available on, and now allows
> to add/remove/edit repositories (i.e. feeds).
>    * Angus updated to work with FSO. With this script, the
> FreeRunner works as a bluetooth GPS.
>    * Marco shared his success in compiling the latest E17 svn on 2008.12.
> There was trouble on SHR with the Elementary widget set, tough.
> 4. Community
>    * Sean's new year interview
>    * Rakshat Hooja's company IDA Systems will be at Mumbai's TechFest. There
> are gifts waiting for the first 10 FreeRunner owners to show up at their
> booth!
>    * The Future of location services thread started as an attempt to clarify
> the GPS drivers tangle, and then turned to using GSM celltowers and wifi
> access points location information. Dima signalled that there are several
> free databases of GSM tower locations, and that his gta02 Perl script to
> query OpenCellID for the approximate tower location, and then initialize the
> AGPS with this data works great. There is a database of Wifi access points at
>    * Two new mailing lists were announced. One to discuss testing of all
> Openmoko Products. The other to discuss administration.
> While we are at it, here are the number of subscriptions as of 07/01/2009
> according to Werner: hardware 670, kernel 692, support 1016, devel 1262,
> community 2323, announce 11258.
>    * The Department CSIE of National Chung Cheng University launched dozens
> of projects this week.
> 5. Hardware and drivers
>    * Werner announced he made an debug board that fits inside the case.
> Schematics contributed as a community member, not as an Openmoko employee.
>    * Filter AUX key bouncing patches.
>    * There is a thread about the touchscreen driver on the devel list, how it
> should be split between kernelspace and userspace, and how to contribute it
> upstream to the Linux kernel. I find the mix of high-level technical
> arguments with social and emotional considerations fascinating.
>    * It is a pleasure to say that the Community localized the Illume keyboard
> to at least nine different languages. This does not only involves layout and
> icon, but also building up a dictionary (the keyboard emits key symbols when
> in "terminal" mode, but uses predictive dictionary lookups when in "strings"
> mode.) The frontier: asian languages input.
>    * The Freeunner is also a target platform for many innovative new input
> methods.
>    * Carl proposed a simple in-car mount: stick a piece of velcro on the
> dashboard, strap the FreeRunner onto it through the hole, flipping the
> display with xrandr -o 2. Add a standard USB car charger, you are all set.
>    * GSM firmware updater and hardware buzzfix program: not released yet,
> still working on it.
>    * Video driver code was ported from kdrive to xorg architecture, Graeme is
> now in debugging mode. Andreas, Chris and Tom are also working on it.
>    * Miguel's video showcases that the Arduino, a popular open-source
> electronic prototyping platform, complements well the FreeRunner when it
> comes to reading sensors and controlling actuators.
>    * Qi supports the zImage kernel format.
> 6. Tips and tricks
>    * Booting 2008.12 from a microsd fails with "Only GTA01 hardware supported
> by ASoc driver" ? Option "ro" on the kernel commandline is fatal for startup
> of 2008.12. Check your U-Boot env if you're using that for "ro", or try
> adding rw to /boot/append-GTA02 if you are on SD Card and Qi.
>    * tangogps 0.9.2 and 0.9.3 have an issue converting between coordinate
> formats in the western or southern hemispheres. If you use the DD.dd format
> it should display the correct value.
>    * Current FSO should support both the 2.6.24 and 2.6.28 kernels. The patch
> to use old FSO with new kernel is here.
>    * Howto get the wrench and QWERTY buttons in 2008.12 with the ASU theme.
>    * Chris Samuel offers a noise reduction+echo suppression patch and binary
> for QtE 4.4.2.
> Yours,
> Minh
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> Openmoko community mailing list
> community at

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