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Re: 8.9" CT-PC89E ARM netbook .... UPDATE 04 FEB 2010 12:00

On Thu, Feb 4, 2010 at 3:09 PM, Hector Oron <hector.oron@gmail.com> wrote:
> Hi !
> 2010/2/4 Alejandro Mery <amery@geeks.cl>:
>> been "engineering samples"... what about the UART, serial port (even 2
>> pins help a lot) and jtag reachability? =)
> That's an important part. :-)
> Let me explain our experience. A bunch of Debian Developers met at
> Taipei (.tw) and we got a netbook (MIPS based) under $100. After we
> got it, we had *no shell*, *no root*, *no loader access*, *no
> serial*,...
> We had to exploit a vulnerability in the pdf reader order to start
> telnetd and we were lucky to get a remote shell. After making some
> pressure to the company to release source code because they were
> violating GPL, they putted up some source packages, but not kernel
> (linux), nor bootloader (uboot).


 *sigh* yes, a chinese MIPS cpu, whilst wonderfully cheap,
reverse-engineering - i've done it: i have 9 HTC Linux phones and one
ETEN G500+ to prove it - is a complete pain.  i'm not doing it again

 so, this time we play a different game: use the fact that of the 20
people wanting machines _fifteen_ of them are software engineers who
will happily help this factory to improve its value for the world
market by getting debian packages on it, right?


> This device has really nice price, but its openness really sucks. Be
> aware on what you buy, always make sure it really supports open
> source.

 that's why adam's going along with his phone, laptop and a webcam and
skype.  we can definitely see from the photo that it has a swirly "G"
and from that we're guessing it's "gOS", converted to chinese.

> The laptop I am talking about is http://www.g-netbook.com/GL-740I.html
> I would not recommend to anyone to buy it.

 okaaay, thaat's what the Ingenic CPUs are, i wondered what those
numbers were.  4720 etc.  ok, they're MIPS processors.  yes.  USB 1.1.
 SDRAM.   366mhz CPU.  wouldn't touch it.  or, more specifically: i'm
looking in a different kind of price-range and a different kind of
feature-set.  between adam and i we must have looked at over 300
systems over the past few months.

> In the case of ARM netbooks, I have been reading on the 'Always
> innovating Touchbook' based on the beagleboard (OMAP3)
> http://www.alwaysinnovating.com/home/index.htm

 yes!  very nice machine, i know the hardware designer - really quiet guy.

 the touchbook is more expensive so as to give them a good safety
margin.  and the OMAP3530 CPU on its own is $35 even in 1k volumes!
add $20 for 256mb POP memory and you start to see why the price is
$USD 299.

 i've spent absolutely damn months looking for systems like this and
they are juust starting to crawl out the woodwork.


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