Tag Archives: podcast

Rockbox on FLOSS Weekly #43

Randal Schwartz and Leo Laporte interviewed our own Paul “Llorean” Louden about the Rockbox project on FLOSS Weekly and we were a bunch of Rockboxers hanging out on the IRC channel #rockbox while it was streamed live. This will be in the FLOSS Weekly episode #43 that’s supposedly going to become available on friday the 3rd of October.

I think Paul did a great job explaining a lot of things, big and small, around the project and how it works and runs.

Not Based on Linux

Linux Action ShowOk so the guys on the Linux Action Show podcast don’t really get a lot of bonus points from me lately. The episode after they had their “we need to sell proprietary software” outburst, they slammed the Rockbox 3.0 release (roughly 23:40 into the episode for you who want to fast-forward to it).

They started off the news about Rockbox 3.0 claiming it is based on Linux (which it isn’t and never was), only to mention that they failed to install on their ipod 3rd gen at their first attempt (but succeeded at a second attempt), whined somewhat on the installer and then again complained about the inability to install themes even though this is 3.0 yada yada yada.

All in all, pretty much a complete non-understanding for the hard work and endless time that hundreds of people have put into Rockbox. Nothing particular to hear or care about, just a bit annoying.

They can’t do it so I won’t

I listened to a recent episode of the Linux Action Show podcast the other day (s9e4), and in that episode the hosts Bryan and Chris really lost touch with reality.

First they started ranting about how “the Linux Desktop” needs an eco system for proprietary closed-source applications. They claimed that we cannot make good quality software entirely open source, that open source products and tools won’t be as good as proprietary ones. They apparently decided that the reason there’s a lack of some tools (notable example that these guys like to bring up: video editors) is that the creators of these tools don’t make them proprietary so that they can sell them.

Of course they had nothing to back up their claims but a few random guesses from their behalf.

Then, after that whole weird segment that seemed to be taken out of the blue, Bryan strikes with announcing how he intends to improve the linux desktop environment by start selling two proprietary tools to the world to show that it can be done and yada yada.

I mean, this guy has never done any particular open source or free software contribution of significance. It’s not like he even tried to contribute and make a living off of something related. They decided that others have tried and failed, so he shall not.

The two tools he now sell are two minor tools that will prove nothing about how proprietary programs can or cannot survive on the Linux market. If he fails to sell enough to make a living it just says nobody wanted his niche products well enough (or that he asks too much money for them), and in case he does get money from the products to make a decent living it is not a proof that he couldn’t have made a business case for an open source version.

These are two guys who tend to praise linux and open source and everything in episode after episode. In my view, the open source world has proven over and over again that it is capable of producing and making just about anything to a quality that matches and surpasses those of the proprietary closed-source world. These guys just happen to come to a conclusion that this concept doesn’t work exactly at the same time when one of them decides it’s time to sell proprietary linux software?

I say hypocrites.

gdgt #2 said Rockbox

Ryan and Peter from Engadget and Gizmodo fame are now making a new site and podcast series. The latter seem to have climbed the “charts” very rapidly and it is a top podcast in the tech sector on itunes apparently.

Anyway, in the second episode (about 20 minutes into it) they did a very brief and non-explanatory reference to Rockbox about wanting to install it on a SanDisk Sansa e280. Anyway, they didn’t say much about it at all but I simply enjoyed having it reached that level of no-need-to-explain-what-it-is-when-mentioned.

lugradio s5e14

sansa e200RI listened to lugradio’s season 5 epsisode 14 podcast today and I thought I’d share that at roughly 1:20 into the show there’s a brief mentioning and discussion around Rockbox. The subject came up thanks to a listener’s email explaining how he got his Sansa e200 player to play ogg by installing it.

Unintentionally, it was also quite ironical how Adam (one of the podcast hosts) just minutes before this mentioned how he has an iAudio X5 that can play ogg vorbis (and flac) natively (as a response to a user asking what players the guys would recommend) – without mentioning a single word about Rockbox even though Rockbox worked on the X5 long before it worked on the Sansa and I would think that any Linux- liking Open Source geek should know about Rockbox and use it on their mp3 players at least as long as they have targets that Rockbox is already ported to and working fine on… and when asked, I can only recommend getting any player that can run Rockbox before one that can’t. Of course these days this is somewhat of a dilemma since none of the players Rockbox supports are manufactured anymore…

I also liked in a elbow-poking sort of way how they referred to the ipodlinux project as one of the most pointless projects in existence. Of course, that may very well also be one of the reasons why that project is now more or less dead. This also makes me think of this lwn.net post by debacle, who argues that having Linux on a portable music player is better than Rockbox simply because “there’s where the developers are”. As the ipodlinux example shows, the reality is not that simple.