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.
Back at FSCONS ’07, I asked the guy doing the Openmoko presentation about whether they are going GTK or Qt, as his talk mentioned both and he didn’t really spell it out on what horse they were putting their money on. He then thought it was a really funny question and went on to explain how the Openmoko is like a small computer that can run anything you want. A bit like he was educating us that embedded devices do have CPUs that can run actual software. As if they wouldn’t have a main branch and a main development selecting one of these particular toolkits…
Many moon laps later, I discussed Openmoko with a friend over a few stouts at Snaxx 18, and he explained how he’d got one of the dev boards a long time ago and had kept up and tried a lot of versions of it and that it basically never worked to even make simple phone calls. He gave me the impression that perhaps the project wasn’t really that well run if it after this long still don’t have even the most basic functionality present and running stable.
Therefor I was happy to listen to TWIT 143 about the Dash Express and them telling me about it being based on the Openmoko platform. It felt like solid proof they are moving in the right direction then, so at least parts of the project must be functioning!
Then, to round it up it was with a big grin I read about the recent news that they are abandoning GTK and are now going to use E17 and Qt instead. Not a trace of any “this is like a small computer it can run anything” talk now (although I do understand that the statement was just something from this person and not any public endorsement from the project or so). This very same Ars Technica article says the first Openmoko based phone called Freerunner is going into “mass production stage next month” (that would be June 2008).
Personally, I can still see how making Rockbox run as an application on an Openmoko device would be a very cool thing.