Nov

15

Neo Battery Failure?

10 years ago, mid-November | Leave a Comment

I’m a little worried about my Neo 1973, or more precisely it’s battery. We all know that the Neo doesn’t last particularly long with its battery, even after powering down, unless you take the battery out for a few minutes first. The problem started a few days about when my Neo seemed to reboot itself for no apparent reason. I noticed it about three times and thought nothing of it. Until now that is. I’m wondering how many times and for how long the battery can take being plugged into my laptop, getting charged and discharged on an almost daily basis. I’m trying to work it out, my Neo arrived on July 31 2007, If I estimate 1 charge / discharge per day that comes out at only 107 recharges, which is surely well under the life of a battery?

Looking at the graph below it appears that my battery is not charging while the Neo is powered up, or at least, it’s only getting enough charge to keep it at a fairly static level – ie not actually charging over what it takes to run the device.

I’ve Updated the graph because the Neo lost its charge competely, the graph should show this clearly and seems to mirror the results from here

I used a simple bash script to check for the voltage from

/sys/devices/platform/s3c2410-i2c/i2c-adapter/i2c-0/0-0008/battvolt

every second and then dump it to a file on my laptop. The Neo was plugged in via usb. To me the graph, measured over an hour, looks like it’s falling.

So it looks like either my battery and/or the charging circuit is damaged or I’m reading the data wrongly. I’m going to run the battery monitor for a day or so, or at least until the neo reboots itself. Once that is done I’ll put the second battery that I got with the advanced kit and see how that does in the same tests.



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November 15, 2007 13:51

Nov

13

When is a door not a door?

10 years ago, mid-November | 2 Comments

Or more appropriately, when is open source not open source? The answer, I’m sad to say, is when Google get involved. With the release of Android many people got excited about this new open source development environment for mobile devices. Unfortunately, the current license is not an open source one. Android, at this point in time, is not released under the Apache license. What they do say is:

Once the SDK reaches a more finished form, Google intends to release most of the components under the Apache v2.0 open source license

which could mean tomorrow, next year or never. Also note the use of ‘most’ – either it’s open source or it’s not – pick one Google. It also means that even if most components get released under the Apache license, Google could still keep, and use any licensing they like on key components. That is to say Google would be able to pull a “Tivo”.

Don’t get me wrong, I fully understand that Google paid for Android and it’s their product. What I do object to is the claims that it is opensource. At this juncture is is most definitely not. So far all that Google have released is what is required by the GPL and LGPL.

Truly, I’m disappointed.



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November 13, 2007 13:18

Nov

12

Booting the Neo 1973 from SD

10 years ago, mid-November | Leave a Comment

After a somewhat lengthy session trying to get a Neo to boot from and image on SD I’ve finally managed to get it working. It took so long because u-boot is broken. Having taken the risk of flashing u-boot many times I finally found one that works properly and, after flashing, the Neo booted perfectly from SD. Sadly for one person, also trying to achieve the same on their Neo, they have a brick after flashing a bad u-boot. Incidentally, when I say ‘booted perfectly’ what I really mean is it part booted and then I got a kernel panic. This was caused by it not being able to mount the root partition which although I’d created as ext2 didn’t work. A quick reformat as ext3, a recopy of the appropriate files, and it booted without issue.

The good news is that I now have a dual booting Neo with Qtopia and Openmoko, although I don’t know how badly booting like this this will affect the current very poor battery life. At least I can now test either as I want without flashing I might even buy myself a bigger SD card and partition it off and have a number of bootable versions, who knows maybe Android will get on there.



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November 12, 2007 9:42

Nov

10

There is no spoon

10 years ago, mid-November | Leave a Comment

It’s true. There is no GooglePhone. What we are going to get is an SDK, Android, which will hopefully allow us to build quickly and simply. Sadly the licensing still allows devices to be locked down tight, so don’t expect to see a flood of Opensource devices hitting the streets any time soon.

Since the SDK isn’t due to be available until the 12th November 2007, I’ll hold back for now. Once I have my paws on it I’ll let you know what I think. As it stands I don’t see it as any sort of challenge to Openmoko, in fact I think it adds strength to it.



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November 10, 2007 17:10

Nov

10

Rio / DDAR Made useful once more.

10 years ago, mid-November | Leave a Comment

Previously I’d talked about slimrio, software that enabled the DDAR/Rio to talk to Slimserver. Now that I have it installed I can say that it works, to some degree. The slimrio software was a doddle to install, basically requiring nothing more that untaring the slimrio root filesystem over the existing one. Rebooting the DDARs resulted in a rather swish looking logo sliding in from the right, followed by some author info, also sliding in. This, I thought, was a good sign. Unfortuneately the DDAR screen is only a fraction of the size of a real Slim devices player so everything beyond that looks dire. It’s usable, but my wife is never going to like it or get used to it at all. Thankfully the solution appears to be a Nokia 770 web tablet. The slimserver allows its layout to be configured one of those options is Touch, making the software very usable from a Nokia 770.

Nokia 770

Once I’d got AlienBBC installed and the streams set up everything worked as planned. While the interface isn’t perfect it certainly makes slimserver usable with the DDARs. I can now put my plans to buy the overpriced $299 Slim devices players on hold, in favour of the 5 DDARs I have and a couple of the, now reduced in price, Nokia 800’s.

 



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November 10, 2007 17:02


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