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  • 2 Post By Pilotovef
  1.    #1  
    This loaded up on my BBC feeds today.

    The eagerly anticipated Raspberry Pi home computer is about to go into production. The $25 (16) machine is being created in the hope that it will inspire a new generation of technology whizz kids. The Pi uses an Arm chip similar to that found in mobile phones and is intended to run a version of the Linux open source operating system.

    BBC News - Bare bones Raspberry Pi PC gets ready to launch

    Just imagine if they used webOS on these new machines, new users could come flooding into the market...
    Last edited by leobloom; 12/23/2011 at 12:44 PM.
  2. #2  
    Yeah, it'd be nice to see. We'd need to get something with a working VKB, as well as get a touchscreen attached to it. And a cell modem, unless you wanted it to be just a Wifi device. As is, it'd be somewhat akin to a Wifi Pixi, with a HDMI output.
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  3. #3  
    Porting webOS to the Raspberry Pi would be virtually pointless as anything but an academic exercise, since the following are lacking:

    1. No touchscreen, so input would be "interesting"
    2. No Bluetooth, so no webOS Keyboard(*)
    3. No drivers for touchscreen controllers; need to be written for each different controller
    4. No accelerometer, GPS, compass, etc. that lots of apps/games rely on(*)
    5. Hell, drivers would have to be written for most every hardware component
    6. It's ethernet-only ($35 model); no WiFi option(*). $25 model has no base connectivity.

    And then you have the additional cost of having to buy a Touchscreen if you want the card metaphor / multitasking interface to mean much at all; if you've used the webOS Keyboard for the Touchpad, you know what I mean. Losing the touch interface in webOS makes it a less than fun experience. Hell, it's painful and there are still huge gaps in webOS itself when it comes to keyboard-based control.

    Furthermore, the SoC only runs at 700Mhz--not especially fast considering any port would be rough and unoptimized for a while. If you installed webOS 2.x on an old Pre, that's pretty much what you could optimistically expect, but with more problems, errors, a degraded user experience, etc. since you're dealing with a port involving hardware webOS was never built for, much less been used on. And remember, webOS sits on top of Linux; it isn't itself Linux.

    The Pi also has only 128MB/256MB of RAM depending on the model you buy. "Too Many Cards" errors? Get used to those again; they'll be all over the place, and don't even think about running some of the more resource-hungry apps.

    Just because it's an ARM device and runs Linux doesn't mean it's ripe for porting a mobile operating system to, and it's doubtful that with those hurdles above it'd gain much traction, if any. Users certainly wouldn't come "flooding" to webOS, I can certainly say that.

    Linux, being optimal for lean configurations, will be fantastic on this which is exactly what I intend to install on it once the ordering window opens up. You just can't beat a $35 home webserver/seedbox.

    (*) You need to buy a separate WiFi adapter/dongle if you want to run it wirelessly. You could probably attach a USB hub to accommodate it and also GPS and Bluetooth dongles, but it kind of defeats the purpose of being a compact and cheap platform. And, again, driver support?
  4. #4  
    Quote Originally Posted by eblade View Post
    Yeah, it'd be nice to see. We'd need to get something with a working VKB, as well as get a touchscreen attached to it. And a cell modem, unless you wanted it to be just a Wifi device. As is, it'd be somewhat akin to a Wifi Pixi, with a HDMI output.
    You realize adding all that stuff will make the cost skyrocket, right? So, a $25 computer with $400 of upgrades makes it a....a....a regular priced computer! Not too mention still no touchscreen, gps, network connectivity, etc., etc.

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