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Details Emerge About Spark Linux-Based Tablet

samzenpus posted more than 2 years ago | from the check-it-out dept.

KDE 188

MojoKid writes "There's a new tablet in town called the Spark. The Linux-driven tablet, based on the Zenithink C71 and KDE was unveiled by developer Aaron Seigo recently. The tablet will be available for pre-order this week and will start shipping worldwide in May. In terms of specifications, the 7-inch (800x480) multi-touch slate will run a 1GHz AMLogic ARM processor and Mali-400 GPU, sport 512MB of RAM, 4GB of internal storage (with a microSD slot for expandability), 802/11b/g WiFi, a pair of USB ports, a front-facing 1.3MP webcam, and an audio jack. The UI of choice is Plasma Active and there will apparently be a content store where developers can peddle their wares and users can snag software."

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The dev team thinks of everything (4, Funny)

emurphy42 (631808) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940213)

From TFA:

Seigo also noted that the tablet will indeed blend, although that would void the warranty.

Re:The dev team thinks of everything (4, Funny)

symbolset (646467) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940359)

If somebody comes out with an Android tablet that will blend and not void the warranty, I'm buying it. I have small kids.

Difference between Android and Linux ?? (2)

Taco Cowboy (5327) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940481)

Have a tablet running Android 2.3 (version 4 isn't available for it yet, still waiting)

Need to know what's the difference between a tablet running Linux and Android ?

Will Android apps work in the Linux tablets, and vice versa?

Re:Difference between Android and Linux ?? (5, Insightful)

MrHanky (141717) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940547)

Are you sure that four digit UID really is yours?

Re:Difference between Android and Linux ?? (3, Informative)

TuringTest (533084) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940599)

Surely he is the first Slashdot troll? :-P

Re:Difference between Android and Linux ?? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38940551)

You've just discovered why Stallman advocated the GNU/Linux naming scheme. While Android kernel is based on Linux, Android as an OS is very far away from conventional Linux/Unix systems. Afaik Spark will be closer to conventional Linux (like what you could have in desktops and servers). Thus whatever Spark is running is probably completely incompatible with Android.

Re:Difference between Android and Linux ?? (1)

Nikker (749551) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940745)

You must be trolling. Of course Android supports ARM most of the devices out there are ARM now.

Re:Difference between Android and Linux ?? (2)

Noitatsidem (1701520) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940989)

I don't see ARM being mentioned in the post above?

Re:Difference between Android and Linux ?? (4, Informative)

chrb (1083577) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940575)

Android and traditional "Linux" are not quite the same thing. Imagine taking a generic Linux distribution like Ubuntu, cutting it to the bare minimum, replacing xorg and the desktop with an app launcher, add a web browser and media player, add a Java runtime environment like the JRE linked to an online app market, and then you have something that resembles Android. Command line Linux apps will run on Android, but you will usually have to recompile them if nobody else has (you can cheat though, and say, run Debian in a chroot). Linux graphical apps (X) will not run on Android (you can hypothetically run them through VNC, but it's not great). Apps written for other graphical backends like OpenGL and SDL should work on Android once you get them to compile. Android apps will not run on Linux because there is no Android runtime environment for Linux. At some point I expect we'll see an open source "Android player", but nobody has done it yet (I recall Canonical working on it at one point, but I haven't heard anything about that for a while).

Re:Difference between Android and Linux ?? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38940913)

Hmm - sounds like what I have been reading about Ubuntu with Unity/HUD/Wayland ...

RO

Re:Difference between Android and Linux ?? (1)

nadaou (535365) | more than 2 years ago | (#38941061)

> Android apps will not run on Linux because there is no Android
> runtime environment for Linux.At some point I expect we'll see
> an open source "Android player", but nobody has done it yet

seeing how simple it is to set up the Android qemu/kvm based SDK in a virtual machine on Linux, I don't know if that itch is really very scratchy.

> Command line Linux apps will run on Android, but you will
> usually have to recompile them if nobody else has (you can
> cheat though, and say, run Debian in a chroot)

please tell us more about this debian chroot solution.the idea intrigues me and I wish to subscribe to the newsletter.

Re:Difference between Android and Linux ?? (1)

jbolden (176878) | more than 2 years ago | (#38941225)

The virtual environment works well for developers. If Android apps become something that people want to use on their desktop then the virtual machine solution doesn't work.

Apple is confronting this now with a wealth of iOS applications that are very popular and that people would like to run on their macs.

Re:Difference between Android and Linux ?? (4, Informative)

chrb (1083577) | more than 2 years ago | (#38941353)

seeing how simple it is to set up the Android qemu/kvm based SDK in a virtual machine on Linux, I don't know if that itch is really very scratchy.

BlueStacks [bluestacks.com] got over $10m funding, so some people think it's a good idea. It should be really easy to do, too - all the source required is open and already runs on Linux/Android, it just needs porting to Linux/desktop.

please tell us more about this debian chroot solution.

http://www.mayrhofer.eu.org/debian-on-android [eu.org] http://www.saurik.com/id/10 [saurik.com]

Please dont use such shitty wordage (1)

unity100 (970058) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940221)

'....... where users can SNAG software ......' really. this wordage makes it sound as if the store will operate as charity and not with profit oriented sales. makes it sound as if we arent going to pay anything.

'oh, we can just SNAG software eh ?' ..........

why not directly use 'buy'.

Re:Please dont use such shitty wordage (1)

Anne Thwacks (531696) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940283)

He probably meant "snarf", but "buy" does explain it better.

Words mean things (2)

symbolset (646467) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940365)

I would know. In this case "snag" means to acquire through purchase or through gift - to achieve ownership without theft.

Re:Please dont use such shitty wordage (1)

Necroloth (1512791) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940463)

much better than squirting...

Re:Please dont use such shitty wordage (1)

Zontar The Mindless (9002) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940553)

"Snag" is merely slang for "get", "obtain", "acquire", "take", etc. I agree it doesn't sound very professional, but it in no way implies stealing AFAIK.

E.g. (from my misspent youth ca. 1980) Dude, I've got major cottonmouth--let's roll by Mickey-Dee's and snag a milkshake.

No connotation of stealing. Perhaps you're thinking of "boost"?

Re:Please dont use such shitty wordage (1)

Zero__Kelvin (151819) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940619)

"No connotation of stealing. Perhaps you're thinking of "boost"?"

Nope. Boost [boost.org] is free! No need to steal it.

Re:Please dont use such shitty wordage (1)

Skapare (16644) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940991)

"Snag" also means you're stuck with it until you make a significant effort to get rid of it. Other possible words include "Snarf" (get it quickly) and "Snatch" (get it with the impression you are stealing it or getting it for your girlfriend). But I do like "boost" in this case.

Re:Please dont use such shitty wordage (1)

shiftless (410350) | more than 2 years ago | (#38941097)

really. this wordage makes it sound as if the store will operate as charity and not with profit oriented sales.

Exactly. It's a psychological trick which is a standard piece of the Marketing tool bag.

Why KDE? (1)

Pieroxy (222434) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940237)

And I thought Unity was the way to go for tablets... I don't know what to think anymore ;-)

Re:Why KDE? (1)

Skapare (16644) | more than 2 years ago | (#38941039)

It's Linux. Exercise your OS-bildskilz (or just wait for others to do it for you and steal theirs). Just replace what bits you don't want with what you do want. I might get one of these and put Armed-Slack on it with Xfce. Or I might not just to tick you off.

Rise of Linux (5, Insightful)

Wowsers (1151731) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940239)

I am interested in this tablet, not because it is best / most up to date, but it pushes Linux. What I mean is, it's not relying on a locked down version that the likes of Google pretend is Linux. It's not just a question of free as in no cost OS, but freedom to do what you like... which is not the same as installing re-engineered OS versions but might brick your device as that's how the hardware was designed.

To that end, I'd love to see a 100% Linux phone, nothing relying on Google with it's bits locked down or tracking

Re:Rise of Linux (5, Informative)

loufoque (1400831) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940257)

Try the Linux phones Nokia made before being bought by Microsoft.

Re:Rise of Linux (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38940339)

Those phones dont have a future, so by buying them you only subsidize Nokias future Windows phones. You need to put your money somwhere where it benefits the Linux ecosystem in the long run.

Re:Rise of Linux (5, Informative)

MrHanky (141717) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940577)

Untrue. Nokia still develops Qt for use with future phones, both Symbian (which is being phased out in a few years) and cheaper 'feature phones' targetting what Nokia calls 'the next billion' internet users. Nokia has stated the Swipe UI of the N9 is going to live on, and obviously not in Windows phones.

Re:Rise of Linux (2)

tikram (1262046) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940489)

I see this very often around here, but people don't seem to know that large parts of the OS on those phones are closed binary blobs - mainly the drivers, and parts of the UI and the bundled apps. Not exactly an open phone, I'm afraid.

Re:Rise of Linux (1)

Wizzu (30521) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940873)

They are still probably the most open phones that are available in the mass market. (Not that I have read or done any studies on that.) You can replace the kernel too on the N9, if you want, even if it does have an impact on some of the features.

Full disclosure: I am a Nokia employee.

Re:Rise of Linux (1)

tehowe (1974640) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940265)

I'm keeping my eye on the Tizen project, which is the Lnux Foundation's latest kick at the can after Elop killed Meego. https://www.tizen.org/ [tizen.org] I won't be updating my beloved N900 until there's a new FOSS solution.

Re:Rise of Linux (1)

gl4ss (559668) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940309)

if N900 is free enough for you, why isn't N9? it's available just as widely and in fact in some areas advertised much more than n900 ever was..

Re:Rise of Linux (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38940491)

If only it had a hardware keyboard...

Re:Rise of Linux (1)

MtHuurne (602934) | more than 2 years ago | (#38941231)

You can use a (mini) bluetooth keyboard with it. Not out of the box, but it's not overly complex to set up either. I even saw an app for this appear in the Ovi store a couple of days ago.

Re:Rise of Linux (1)

hobarrera (2008506) | more than 2 years ago | (#38941209)

I find maemo superior to meego in terms of flexibility and usability, and the hardware keyboard is a must for me.

Re:Rise of Linux (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38941361)

there's this aegis crap, phone api doesn't give you neighbouring cells, you can't access sms storage and there's surely more. don't get me wrong, i like this n9 - but there apparently was some pressure to cripple it a bit

Re:Rise of Linux (1)

hobarrera (2008506) | more than 2 years ago | (#38941223)

Tizen sound a lot like an Android from a usability point of view. Apps are to be programmed in javascript or something alike. Not GTK/QT like maemo/meego. I feel tizen will be more distant to gnu/linux than maemo is.

Nokia N9 (3, Informative)

srussia (884021) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940267)

To that end, I'd love to see a 100% Linux phone, nothing relying on Google with it's bits locked down or tracking

MeeGo Harmattan close enough for you?

Re:Nokia N9 (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38940377)

I'm glad someone mentioned Nokia N9 here. In fact, as soon as I can afford to spend the money, I will buy one. I hope to accomplish two things with this purchase:

  • - I will own a phone with a free/open and modern OS (or at least less controlled then the competition)
  • - I will contribute a tiny little bit to changing Nokia's mind about abandoning Meego

Re:Nokia N9 (1)

Fri13 (963421) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940497)

What makes Linux in Android more closed than Linux in Harmattan (aka Maemo 6.0)?

Linux is under GPLv2 license and no one can not close it. Heck, you can even install any wanted Android version with wanted Linux version what is just available on your chosen handset.

Welcome to Android community where people actually run own compiled Linux operating system in their customized Android system.

Re:Nokia N9 (2)

cdp0 (1979036) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940717)

But why go through all that when you can buy one phone (Nokia N9) that gives you what you need right from the start ? With N9 you basically have root access from the beginning, no jail breaking, no flashing, no nothing. This is what I call freedom (well, in this context).

Re:Nokia N9 (1)

DrXym (126579) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940961)

Some android phones are rootable too. Also, a phone's rootability says very little about the OS sitting on top. I'm sure Nokia could have closed the phone down if they wished.

Re:Rise of Linux (1)

gl4ss (559668) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940305)

try openmoko.

or if you want something actually useful - which has other users as well - buy a N9.

tizens philosophy of webapps hints at aims for manufacturers to ship pretty tightly locked versions of it, so you might just as well get a N9 now and enjoy it.

Re:Rise of Linux (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38940983)

Or try the successor of the OpenMoko Freerunner (GTA02), the Phoenux (GTA04), available for online ordering. A group buy effort is ongoing to ramp up mass production at reduced cost.

More details: www.gta04.org
and : www.handheld-linux.com/wiki.php?page=GTA04

There has been a presentation on FOSDEM this past weekend.

Re:Rise of Linux (1)

blackest_k (761565) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940341)

When I first heard about this tablet I was a bit disappointed especially with the price being so much more than the android version.

I am getting a bit more interested mainly because Linux has pretty good support for usb peripherals, where android is pretty much mass storage and hid devices only. Cups should be available which will mean you can print without going through Google.

Ok the chrome browser has a server component which lets you share your printer so for example I could take a photo on my android phone select my printer shared via the cloud google would push the print job to my netbook which will then pass it to my nas to serve to my printer and print the thing.

Other devices will be supported Cd/ dvd drives tv cards hardware video encoders, a usb to serial port real barcode readers and other devices that most people will have no interest in but could be kind of useful in specialised situations.

The screen resolution is a bit low for general use but its the first implementation, later models will be better.

Chances are it will be dual booting android and linux not long after initial release so maybe this could be a nice tablet to have with the best of both worlds.

wonder how well the kde tablet edition would work on the raspberry pie boards ...

Re:Rise of Linux (1)

chrb (1083577) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940673)

The price does sound a little high, but (assuming the Spark is completely open source) it will hopefully open up a whole new market of cheap clone devices.

the tablet (about $265 USD) will be available for pre-order this week and will start shipping worldwide in May. In terms of specifications, the 7-inch (800x480) multi-touch tablet will run a 1GHz AMLogic ARM processor and Mali-400 GPU and sport 512MB of RAM, 4GB of internal storage (with a microSD slot for expandability), 802/11b/g WiFi, a pair of USB ports, a front-facing 1.3MP webcam, and an audio jack.

The Ainol Novo 7 Paladin has similar hardware specs and been spotted as low as $80, it would be a good candidate for a Linux/Plasma port:

Ingenic JZ4770 Xburst, 1GHz; Vivante GC860 GPU, 8GB Flash, 512MB RAM, Screen Size 7 inch 800X480 supports 1080P HD Video

Well... (1)

symbolset (646467) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940389)

I'm tempted to twist a line from "Finding Nemo" here: Just keep waiting, just keep waiting...

I've got a lot of wants too on my list. But until they let me back into the labs where we invent this shit I gotta take what's on the retail counter.

Re:Rise of Linux (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38940621)

We' ve had a usable full linux phone (complete with its terminal and apt-get) for more than 2 years now with the Nokia N900. Right now you can get the N9, which, unfortunately, does not have a hardware keyboard so typing on the shell is not as nice as on the N900 - but is is otherwise a much better phone.

Re:Rise of Linux (1)

chrb (1083577) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940631)

The Nexus phones aren't locked down. The source is available for the kernel and libraries etc. the only thing you don't get the source for is the Google apps. There are replacements for some e.g. Opera for web browser, various email clients. I don't think there's a replacement for YouTube yet though, though mplayer has been ported now, so it shouldn't be long before we see packaged mplayer frontend apps appearing.

If you're talking about the architecture as a whole, it sometimes does "feel" less accessible, because you neeed to learn a lot of stuff before you are able to build a ROM and swap bits out. It would've been nice if there were a unified backend architecture (Wayland?) and similar base libraries (eg libc) that Android and the Linux distributions were both using, so that cross-platform desktops and their apps would've been easier to develop on desktops and tablets. KDE on desktop & tablet & phone, with cross-compatibility for QT apps (with size specific UI layout) sounds good. Throw in an Android player and a generic backend so non-QT graphical apps work, and it's a potential winner.

Re:Rise of Linux (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38940835)

Well, there is a phone, pure Linux based and pure Open Hardware and Software. The successor of the OpenMoko Freerunner, called Phoenux, is available for online ordering. A group buy effort is ongoing to ramp up mass production at reduced cost.

More details: www.gta04.org
and : www.handheld-linux.com/wiki.php?page=GTA04

There has been a presentation on FOSDEM this past weekend.

Re:Rise of Linux (2)

DrXym (126579) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940949)

"100% Linux" is a meaningless term. Perhaps you mean 100% LGPL/GPL. I'm not sure how such a device would be guaranteed to be free of a backend like Google or tracking.

Also, you can fetch and build Android yourself. Nothing to stop you forking it and stripping out anything you disagree with. A vanilla Android doesn't include any of the "premium" Google apps anyway so the tracking is minimal unless you count the default homepage of the browser and a few other vestigial traces. It would be easy enough to fork and strip them out.

Cyanogenmod is example of an Android fork, one that tracks the mainline but also provides a substantial number of enhancements of its own.

Re:Rise of Linux (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38941093)

By 100% linux, he means 'not running the horrible Android java crap'. HTH.

Re:Rise of Linux (1)

Kagetsuki (1620613) | more than 2 years ago | (#38941043)

Sharp Netwalker ran Ubuntu: http://www.sharp.co.jp/netwalker/pct1/ [sharp.co.jp]
It's also got basicaly the exact same specs as this but in a smaller form factor and comes with standard Gnome 2

Re:Rise of Linux (1)

Skapare (16644) | more than 2 years ago | (#38941083)

We don't need hardware that pushes Linux. We just need open documented hardware that doesn't impede end users from installing whatever they want on their own hardware. The penguin will come, followed by a red demon.

Re:Rise of Linux (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38941183)

replying to you from my n9 (ha), running opera mobile. getting ssh client (or console) was simply enabling the "developer mode". it also gave me sshd and i can ssh to the n9...
nokia shareholders really should throw elop out the window or something, with n9 outselling their much more widely available and advertised windows phones

Multi-touch? (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38940245)

I wonder what framework it will use for multi-touch and how well the installed applications are optimized for touch input. Actually, (formerly) Nokia's QT was starting to get good touch support, might be a reason why they went with KDE?

Re:Multi-touch? (1)

loufoque (1400831) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940261)

Does X11 even have multi-touch support?

Re:Multi-touch? (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38940269)

Yeah it does. Since like 2008?

Re:Multi-touch? (3, Informative)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940353)

Earlier than that. the Wacom tablet driver supported multiple pens on screen at once before that.

Re:Multi-touch? (1)

DrXym (126579) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940975)

QT doesn't need to run on X11 thankfully. So it's more a question of whether QT supports multitouch. X11 is such a dinosaur laden down with stuff that most desktops work around or abstract away (e.g. with QT/GTK, Cairo, Freetype etc.) that even desktop distributions are looking forward to the day it can be dumped.

Re:Multi-touch? (1)

RoccamOccam (953524) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940869)

Aaron Seigo is one of the principle developers of KDE and that is why they went with KDE. I'm glad to hear it -- KDE will be an excellent UI for a tablet.

Preorder... (4, Informative)

psergiu (67614) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940259)

This "preorder" business sounds fishy.

Anyone remembers the "CherryPal Africa" $99 laptops ? I preordered two. And almost 3 months after the date they were supposed to be shipping i got the money back by filling a complaint with my bank. Some of the people who preordered used Western Union or simmilar money transfer services and they never got their money back OR the laptop.

Be carefull if preordering vapourware from unknown companies.

but the most important question... (3, Funny)

mrt_2394871 (1174545) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940275)

even for someone who wants a full Linux stack, is: 'Can I play Angry Birds on it?'

Re:but the most important question... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38940441)

why ask for Angry birds when you can wait patiently for Pissed Of Penguins (this is a real project)
http://filmsbykris.com/pop/

YMMV

Re:but the most important question... (1)

MtHuurne (602934) | more than 2 years ago | (#38941309)

Or what about Slightly Annoyed Rodents [annoyedrodents.com] ?

Re:but the most important question... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38940755)

If there's a version even for my crappy LG "cookie", the answer should be: "sure, you can".

Obligatory... (4, Funny)

axedog (991609) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940281)

2012 - year of the linux tablet!

Close but not enough (1)

larppaxyz (1333319) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940315)

To me, this look's like cheap Chinese tablet, with plastic screen and low specs. With 260 dollars you can have WeTab with 10" 1366x768, 3G, GPS, 32G SSD and Intel Atom. I'm not sure why WeTab pretty much failed, custom WeTab UI is pretty good and tablet runs unmodified Debian and Ubuntu if you wish. However, i'm happy to see something like this appearing and it could be useful if it would only cost around 150 dollars.

No GPS? (1)

hcs_$reboot (1536101) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940327)

No GPS! One of the great advantages of tablets over smart phones is the bigger screen, and GPS/Maps display. Sorry but No GPS, No Go.

god. (1)

unity100 (970058) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940723)

cheap Chinese tablet, with plastic screen and low specs

why that fixation to have hard, heavy metal casings on handheld devices ? isnt it stupid to haul around something heavy ? or, 'shiny' is more important than 'light' for you ?

Re:Close but not enough (1)

oodaloop (1229816) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940839)

Where do they make the good tablets, if not China?

Zenithink rubish (1)

wmac1 (2478314) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940323)

I have used 2 different zenithink tablets (7 and 10 inches) before and they are rubish. Both of them provide less than 2 hours of battery, the WiFi does not work at even 6 meters distance, display quality is rubbish and tablet back becomes hot (specially the WiFi section). Wife reception becomes even worse if you "do not hold it right", i.e. put your hand on the antenna section.

Re:Zenithink rubish (5, Funny)

psergiu (67614) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940333)

> Wife reception becomes even worse if you "do not hold it right"

Learn to hold yor wife right and she'll be more receptive :)

Re:Zenithink rubish (1)

Clueless Nick (883532) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940883)

...but the antenna section is in the hub-by.

Re:Zenithink rubish (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38940417)

Wife reception becomes even worse if you "do not hold it right", i.e. put your hand on the antenna section.

So THAT would explain the fairly cold reception I got when coming home late the other night: I didn't hold my wife right. But I'm curious, where are females' antenna sections??? (Just so that I can avoid that area, when the need arises in future....)

Re:Zenithink rubish (1)

DrXym (126579) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940987)

Wife reception becomes even worse if you "do not hold it right", i.e. put your hand on the antenna section.

If your wife has an "antenna" I think you should check she is a he on her birth certificate.

Re:Zenithink rubish (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38941389)

Nope. She's a Mantis-Woman from Green Alien Planet number 6.

Have they fixed.... (1)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940347)

Where the Tablet edition of KDE does not pop up the keyboard for Chrome or Firefox text input boxes?

They're doomed (5, Insightful)

TuringTest (533084) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940351)

"The vision of Plasma Active is to create an innovative and fresh data-centric UI which is not concerned with applications but rather offers a user oriented interface with logically combined items through activities, which reflect the workflow and usage of the device by the user".

Didn't understand a word? Me neither. And this is from a commercial company [basyskom.com] trying to sell the thing. No more luck with the promotional video [basyskom.com] , which only shows some loading times for some unexplained tasks for which the benefit is not clear.

Until they hire some marketing people able to explain why consumers should buy the thing, and some UX people making the users feel at home when using it, nobody -not even geeks- will want to buy one.

Re:They're doomed (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38940401)

Check out "What is plasma active ?" at http://www.plasma-active.org/ for a better description.

You're right, the one at basyskom is not clear at all.

Re:They're doomed (1)

Zontar The Mindless (9002) | more than 2 years ago | (#38941033)

"The vision of Plasma Active is to create an innovative and fresh data-centric UI which is not concerned with applications but rather offers a user oriented interface with logically combined items through activities, which reflect the workflow and usage of the device by the user".

Didn't understand a word?

Oh, I understood it perfectly. Allow me to interpret: We've not got a single blessed clue about this Plasma doohickus--hell, we've not even seen the thing--and the hardware has no standout features, which is why we're not actually telling you about them. And we're just generally full of crap, in any case.

Google Translate really needs to add Marketing BS to their supported languages. :)

Re:They're doomed (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38941051)

Fully agree with the above. Furthermore, they look set to announce the launch of the only tablet on the market with no 3G wireless networking capability. I'm as big a Linux fan as any (and I like KDE), but holy schmoly, even I wouldn't buy one of these. What's the point? If I get a tablet, it needs to have 3G.

Re:They're doomed (1)

shiftless (410350) | more than 2 years ago | (#38941299)

Until they hire some marketing people able to explain why consumers should buy the thing, and some UX people making the users feel at home when using it, nobody -not even geeks- will want to buy one.

You're right that he needs to hire a good marketing person, but the device does have value as it stands. I'd love to have one for personal use. It's Linux based; I don't care about the interface, that can be changed.

I can definitely see where some businesses might like to purchase something like this for use in an integrated system; for instance this caught my eye because among other things I'm designing a restaurant which uses a tablet-based ordering system, and proprietary solutions (as well as anything requiring Java) are completely off the table.

There's plenty of Chinese suppliers already out there who I am sure have all types of Linux tablets available, but this guy has already done the legwork of putting together a more or less finished product that is ready for market. All that's needed is to customize it to the specific application.

Games might make it live (2)

erroneus (253617) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940487)

I hate to sound like someone else when I say "developers, developers, developers" but if this thing shipped with Angry Birds on it, people would buy it and keep using it. Combine that with some really good navigation, and that would keep people from playing with it and dropping it in a drawer later.

Know your target... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38940495)

If you want to sell a "tablet/laptop" to the "Joe Plumber" then don't make a website/news/blog about "IT RUNS LINUX"; sell it for what it can do! Not what "YOU THE HACKER" can make it do!

Slashdot is NOT your target customer!
I love linux but I don't want to hack a tablet/laptop just to have what I need to do the job.
If I need a little more than than it has installed; I can "apt-get/yum/pacman/etc" what is "outthere" in the "OSS" world.
If that is not working then no sale!
Good package selection to start with and good support of all other packages too.
But we all know this don't we; why are these "it runs linux" things keep comming up on /.?

And yes I'm buzzed. Sorry if you don't approve.

Re:Know your target... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38940957)

Actually, slashdot IS their target customer. I've been following it for a month or so, and it's aimed at developers/linux junkies/free software advocates.

Packaging format (1)

thoughtspace (1444717) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940509)

The Linux and Android mob really need to standardise the packaging connector location and shape. Let alone too many variants of OSes.

Re:Packaging format (1)

Robert Zenz (1680268) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940757)

I don't know what you mean, there is only one OS in that mix, Linux.

But if you mean Distributions, then no, that doesn't need any standardization or unification by definition. I'm not sure what you mean with "packaging connector location and shape", though...

Wait for Oracle to sue for trademark infringement (0)

Chrisq (894406) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940535)

Wait for Oracle to sue for trademark infringement: 3 .... 2 ..... 1

Actually I wouldn't blame them if the did. Who's to say that sometime in the future they won't make a low-powered SPARC processor and a tablet. Heck, with Android being GPL'd they might be the only people who have the undisputed rights to release an android tablet.

Re:Wait for Oracle to sue for trademark infringeme (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38940969)

Do people really name tablets after the processors?

important question (2)

Gravis Zero (934156) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940609)

Can it run Flash in a browser?

Re:important question (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38940655)

since it uses an ARM processor you can forget about adobe flash but I suppose gnash or lighthouse or something might work... but I'd say "no".

Re:important question (2)

hobarrera (2008506) | more than 2 years ago | (#38941261)

Totally wrong. The N900 runs a firefox-based browser, and ARM, and has a flash plugin out-of-the-box.
Maybe that's usable (would need to check it's license), or maybe adobe will make one/license one for them.

The real solution would be for adobe+flash to die once and for all! :)

linux confusion (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38940667)

Is it Android or Linux. Some people mean the same with those, some don't.
A GNU/LINUX tablet, that's what we want.

Sparc Linux! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38940725)

64 Cores on my cellie? I'm there!

emerge details... (1)

TeknoHog (164938) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940743)

...but does it run Gentoo?

Raises the question... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38940801)

But does it run Windows?

I only have one question: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38940845)

How much?

Re:I only have one question: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38940861)

Oh, there is a price. Let me rephrase that question:

Will you please take my money?

The price is right, but needs support (1)

Mithent (2515236) | more than 2 years ago | (#38940931)

A single-core 1GHz Cortex A9 and 512MB RAM isn't cutting edge these days, but the price is low. I guess it's in the Kindle Fire bracket, and judging by that device's success, that might be no bad thing - if it's well-promoted and has a strong selection of software easily available. It could fall down on both of those counts, though... we'll see!
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