Jamie Bennett Speaks

Thoughts from Jamie Bennett

Archive for the ‘Linux’ tag

The New UI for ARM Based Ubuntu Devices

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ARM based platforms traditionally have a problem with graphics drivers and free software. Encumbered by licensing issues, many platforms only ship with 2D based drivers whilst the 3D driver-enabled offerings only frequent the poshest of circles such as Nokia’s N900. There are exceptions, but its a painful reality at the moment.

Vendors are trying to work around it, especially as there is the expectation of a ramp-up in the availability of ARM based hardware. Super long-life netbooks, low powered touch based computers, and even a flurry of smaller embedded devices are forecast to hit the market this year, many of which will be based on the Linux operating system. Ubuntu would be a great match for this.
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Written by JamieBennett

February 15th, 2010 at 9:38 am

Ubuntu live cd’s, now 33% faster

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One of the goals for the Lucid cycle was to investigate why it took so long to boot an Ubuntu live cd session. Why is this important I hear you ask? Well the live cd is usually the first thing a potential new Ubuntu user sees. They get an Ubuntu Desktop (or other flavour) cd from their friend/colleague/random person, insert it into their machine, wait for a while and are then presented with a live session. All well and good but if your running on slower hardware, even a different architecture such as ARM, this initial slowness can be orders of magnitude more than a fast desktop/laptop. For example, the ARM images we shipped for Karmic took over 3 minutes to boot into a live desktop session.
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Written by JamieBennett

February 12th, 2010 at 2:27 am

Posted in Linux,Ubuntu

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Ubuntu Platform Sprint

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Taken from the dinning area in the Hilton Portland & Executive Tower Hotel


So its that time of year again, a great Ubuntu release was made late last year and the team is frantically trying to make the next release even better. So to facilitate this the Ubuntu platform team got together for a sprint in the most awesome city of Portland, Oregon last week. Whoever designed the city must be commended, its easy to explore, well laid out and you never get the sense that you are lost, much kudo’s to them.

Anyway, back to team business. The mobile team managed to get a metric tonne of work done (possibly more) in the 5 short days. To date we now have a new default UNR styled UI, 33% faster-to-boot live-cd images (thats across all images, not just ARM), mature and optimized (can you say Thumb2+NEON) images, the Chrome web browser on ARM, greater integration of testing and many, many, bugs squashed. All this and we are only half-way through the cycle.

ARM hardware is only just proliferating onto the market but when it becomes mainstream, we hope our hard work will make Ubuntu the default operating system. The team is working hard to make Lucid the best ever ARM optimized Linux release and we invite you, if you have hardware, to use, test, and contribute to make Linux the choice for ARM hardware.

Written by JamieBennett

February 9th, 2010 at 9:38 pm

Posted in Linux,Ubuntu

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Why I lo(ve)athe the n900

with 14 comments

Edited to include some of my gripes, if you just want to see the list, scroll to the bottom

This is going to get an instant dismissal from the Nokia faithful, but bear with me and I guarantee you will see what I see in some capacity.

Lets get one thing straight first, I love what Nokia have done for Linux, from their first offerings pre-770 to what they do today, they do a great job. I know many of the current (and past) team that care so much about how Linux will someday become the default smart-phone choice that I somewhat feel a little sorry that they pioneered a route that may be occupied by others.
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Written by JamieBennett

December 11th, 2009 at 11:16 pm

Posted in Linux,Maemo

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What would you like to see for ARM based embedded distro’s?

with 8 comments

So its that time of year again, we released a great product and instead of being content, we want to make an even greater one next time. It’s scary to think that I leave for the Ubuntu Developer Summit (UDS) next week but as a Canonical employee we are all charged with coming up with great idea’s on how to make our particular field of interest even more awesome than it is now.
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Written by JamieBennett

November 3rd, 2009 at 8:38 pm

The future of Linux for the mass market?

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There was a little uproar in the open source community here in the UK when the BBC covered the Windows 7 launch. It was rightly pointed out that Apple didn’t get any coverage for Snow Leopard and Linux in general never really gets a shout at all so what’s going on?

Well in the interests of fairness one Canonical employee decided to send the reporter a netbook with a copy of Karmic (the next Ubuntu release) on it.
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Written by JamieBennett

October 26th, 2009 at 10:29 pm

Posted in Linux,Maemo

Tagged with , , , ,

ELC2009 Europe

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On the 15th and 16th of October 2009 around 200 people gathered together in the beautiful south-easten French city of Grenoble, situated at the foot of the French Alps, to talk about embedded Linux. Although there were many talks over the two days the underlying theme of the conference seemed to be boot-time reduction and android.
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Written by Jamie Bennett

October 21st, 2009 at 1:38 pm

Posted in Conference

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The State of Android Development, the way I see it

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The past couple of weeks I’ve been learning how to develop apps for Google’s Android platform. I’ve looked at it before but only at a high level, these past weeks I have actually been using it for real. So what do I think?

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Written by Jamie Bennett

August 20th, 2009 at 12:32 pm

Posted in Android

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