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Comment: Re:Cost (Score 1) 134

by dos1 (#49749455) Attached to: Pre-Orders Start For Neo900 Open Source Phone

>it would be much harder work

Yes, of course, you can fight your own device to just make it behave in the way you want it to.
However, you can also get a device that's *made* to behave in the way you want it to.

I've had my share of working on various OS ports for mobile devices. It's never ending cat-and-mouse play. I've had enough.

Comment: Re:Cost (Score 1) 134

by dos1 (#49749433) Attached to: Pre-Orders Start For Neo900 Open Source Phone

No, read carefully and don't spread false info! There's 64GB of *internal* eMMC, plus 0.5GB of internal NAND (mostly for N900 compatibility), AND additional external microSD memory.

If you say that Neo900 "doesn't do anything special" compared to any Android phone, you surely just don't understand what this fuzz is all about. Almost any Android phone out there is hardly comparable to a openness level of devices like Neo Freerunner, GTA04 or Neo900. The best you can get from Android devices is Replicant or some libhybris abominations, and after using Freerunner and N900 for a long time I'm not exactly interested in either.

The price is simply how development of such things divided by low production yield costs. It's as simple as that. When you're comparing something developed with external funds for a order of magnitude more people, then prices drop *very quick*.

Also, obviously you cannot "take Samsung and replace GPS to more open one". Those devices both lack basic info about what's really inside and how it's connected, reworking is *very* error prone (and producing it means REing it from scratch, which would be even more expensive than Neo900 which already used GTA04 design for some of its parts), they're not FLOSS friendly, the architecture of GSM communication often isn't even privacy friendly... heck, today even finding a device with physical keyboard would be a trouble. Your ideas are simply disconnected from reality. That's not how you make devices, especially not for such a niche as this one.

That's the level of openness and transparency that is the basic requirement of this project that differentiates it from other ones:

Also, the project's take on user privacy and how a modem module will be handled is very unique:

And that's just early stuff. Good luck finding any other suiting phone for someone for whom this stuff is important.

"The execution" of Neo900 is a result of years of experience with real open devices like those from Openmoko and OpenPhoenux community, both as their users and makers. There's hardly any comparable hardware on the market - and virtually none that is "much cheaper", as you postulate. The closest one right now is Jolla, which is still a few steps backwards compared to what Openmoko already did years ago.

Comment: Re:FAQ (Score 1) 134

by dos1 (#49746431) Attached to: Pre-Orders Start For Neo900 Open Source Phone

Capacitive screens are still annoying to use and Wacom layer requires additional stylus to make your input more accurate. On my N900, I can pretty accurately select 8px text just with side of my fingernail, plus it doesn't register accidental presses as soon as I make a skin contact with the screen - and those are killer features for me.

Comment: Re:It. Will. Fail. Period (Score 1) 134

by dos1 (#49746369) Attached to: Pre-Orders Start For Neo900 Open Source Phone

I'm still using my Openmoko Neo Freerunner and my Nokia N900.

I love the form factor of N900.
I love complete freedom over the software of Neo Freerunner.
I love the resistive screen of N900.
I love the fact that I run full GNU/Linux on my phones - came handy in lots of cases already.

I love tinkering with these phones. I got Freerunner as a late teenager - it was worth the investment. I gained a lot of knowledge just by playing with that phone.

So in future I will use Neo900, as any other device would be a downgrade for me. You won't - and it's fine. It's not for people like you. It's for people like me.

Your mention of "0.5GB storage" is a FUD BTW. Neo900 has 64GB + 512MB of NAND.

Comment: Re:Cost (Score 1) 134

by dos1 (#49746275) Attached to: Pre-Orders Start For Neo900 Open Source Phone

0.5Gb storage? It's rather 64.5 Gb - read more carefully.

Of course you can build a "phone" from Arduino shields or other stuff like that. That will be great learning experience and really fun thing to do - I guarantee! But it won't be more than a toy - the aspect of power management alone is a hard topic and you can't expect your phone toy to behave reasonably well there.

This project is not for you, I get it. However, from other point of view, Apple devices can't do anywhere near as much as devices like Neo Freerunner, GTA04 or Neo900 - or heck, even plain N900. I'm not interested in iPhone at all, Android or FirefoxOS devices aren't attractive to me either. For me, the choice is limited - it's either Jolla, or Neo900 - and Neo900 wins for me on both openness and form factor.

And the price? It's just how much things like that cost. If you build a device for a few hundreds of hobbyists, FOSS believers and generally other people similar to you, you cannot benefit from economy of scale. But that's fine. As long as there's someone working on it, and not just a bunch of people wishing that someone would, it's heading in the right direction :)

Comment: Re:I would not be surprised... (Score 5, Informative) 137

Have you even checked how this attack looks like? The traffic is *NOT* coming from Chinese servers, but that's not the point. That's actually why it's so powerful. Baidu serves the malicious JavaScript in place of their analytics tracking script. Inside of China it's normal, but when it goes through the Great Firewall it gets changed to malicious script that turns any visitors of webpages with Baidu script (Google Analytics equivalent) attached to them into part of DDoS. The way that script worked initially was actually pretty hilarious. It attached new tag to the page with src attribute being github URL. This allowed github to replace content under those URLs to "alert('WARNING: malicious script detected');", which got executed in every browser that was turned into an attacker (and due to blocking nature of alert, limiting the impact). Of course there's more to that and the techniques used by attackers changed over past days - for instance, now TCP SYN floods started as well. But the fact is that there's definitely some big Chinese player behind it, even if it's actually not the most likely one - the government.

Comment: Re:Proof (Score 3, Informative) 137

But the actual traffic is international and there's nothing odd in it. It's the actual source of the attack - the hijacked Baidu script that changed non-Chinese visitors of Chinese pages into botnet (well, not really, but very botnet-like) nodes instructed to attack GitHub - that without any doubt came from the Great Firewall of China. It might not be the government, but unless there's a massive man-in-the-middle attack covering the whole non-Chinese Internet, it's definitely something that comes from China.

Practical people would be more practical if they would take a little more time for dreaming. -- J. P. McEvoy