start writing applications - how?

Thomas Wood thomas at
Tue Nov 13 14:27:21 CET 2007

On Tue, 2007-11-13 at 10:13 +0100, Andreas Jellinghaus wrote:
> sorry for first asking on the wrong mailing list (community).
> Still I'm a bit worried that noone wrote back how he wrote his
> apps. if you wrote anything, even only a hello world, please
> give a hands up and share your experience with us. Thanks!

I am writing applications for OpenMoko, including Contacts, Dialer,
Package Manager, as well as other bits and pieces.

A simple hello world tutorial is available on the wiki:

> On the list I see next to no mails about people writing applications for
> moko. What would be the best way to start doing that?
> I'd prefer some script language over C or C++ by far. Has any script
> language been integrated into the openmoko default image these days,
> or would I need to install some ipkg files? Or even recompile to build
> my own package (something most people won't like, takes far too much
> time, cpu and disk space)?

To be honest, it isn't that hard to write programs in C. C is a really
simple language. The only tricky bit in this case is cross compiling.

If you really don't want to write applications in C, then I suspect
Python will be the next best supported language.

> Are there any examples written in some script language that features
> beyond "hello world", such as being optimized for the neo screen size
> and to be used with fingers, or even gestures, or are optimized to
> use the least amount of battery / cpu / memory? are optimized to be
> used / unused (e.g. is it preferable to save state and quit and be
> re-started or should the application rather sleep and not use the cpu
> unless it is selected by the user)? or any example app using data
> shared with other applications such as the address book etc? or some
> application with example code for syncing data with a pc/desktop
> application?

Common sense applies most of the time. Don't make your application wake
up excessively (e.g. avoid polling anything). Only keep in memory what
you need, unless you are likely to need it quickly. Basically, if you
apply good general programming techniques and practises, you probably
won't run into any problems.

> sure, I understand openmoko is new and has a long way to go, and I'm very
> happy about everyone contributing. but I'm somehow worried that I see
> no discussion about these issues, or only "I want" type of discussions,
> but not "how can I?" or "what is done / what can I do"? even if none
> of these features I mentioned are available so far, that would be fine
> for me, at least I would know where we are so far and what I can already
> do and what I can't. having more information what the current status is
> would be great.

Well, a lot of people are excited about the project, but most of them
don't have the time to contribute anything more useful than the
occasional e-mail on the community mailing list. :-)



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