new mailing list for other distros?

Carlos Nazareno object404 at
Wed Feb 18 03:14:05 EST 2009

> I will have my two XO's there, I will try to have them running different
> flavors of DebXO (from USB sticks if nothing else, but quite possibly from
> the NAND), since the future direction is to have them run relativly
> standard distros, having examples of the different distros would be nice.

Would it be good to create a new separate mailman developer list for
non XO OS (Fedora + Sugar) other linux distro ports? (debxo, ubuntu
xo, fedora xo etc) And then keep devel for main XO OS to avoid

In relation to this and other distros, I believe that if more average
people who like to tinker with their gadgets got their hands on XOs,
the OLPC homebrew scene would absolutely explode, be self sustaining,
and I think would actually contribute more upstream to OLPC.

To put things in perspective, the XO IMHO is the
hacker-developer-friendliest "gadget" in existence.

For starters, take a look at the following scenes:
the sidebar of for gadget homebrew

All these other console/device platforms are very developer-hostile
(except the GP2X) compared to the XO where you can create all kinds of
stuff with so many different kinds of languages, and yet the homebrew
scene is very much lively!

As long as a disclaimer exists that official XO support is only mainly
for deployments and official XO OS (meaning consumers should turn to
the homebrew peeps and not the OLPC team for support), the XO
developer scene would be quite active should the XO be made available
to average consumers.

Maintaining an OS + creating apps for it is a herculean task and I
applaud the OLPC dev team for having accomplished such. The usage of
more standard distros on the XO though, would mean way more developers
available developers. I think the only thing that prevents a more
lively OLPC developer scene is availability of units to techie users.

I really hope OLPC would look into a new model to get XOs into the
hands of average consumers (like the oft-repeated "sell em for minor
profit which would go into funding OLPC"). G1G1 is really too
expensive and the Contributors program is a bit... weird. The
Contributors program entails that the project leader would actively
work on the project you signed on to do, whereas owning an XO would
allow the user-developer to tinker around the XO at his/her own pace
and do all sorts of eclectic dev-hackery.

Also, there really is no substitute for developers getting their hands
on actual XO-1 units because experiencing the CPU & RAM limitations
really, really drive the point home on how optimized apps need to be
for the XO. (I mean wow. Flash apps really need a ton of optimization,
especially since the screen has way higher resolution than smartphones
and thus eat more rasterization CPU power)

Off-topic, $250 a pop would be a sweet spot if that provides enough
profit to fund OLPC considering that the $250-$300 niche is already
filled with models that provide way more horsepower than the XO-1
(yes, we can say "that's not XO's objective niche!", but consumers
will still look at cpu,ram&storage whatever anyone says).

Anyway, just a few thoughts.



carlos nazareno
user group manager
phlashers: philippine flash actionscripters
adobe flash/flex/air community
interactive media specialist
zen graffiti studios
"if you don't like the way the world is running,
then change it instead of just complaining."

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