Posts about CherryTV

To the other three guys (or gals)....

... who own a HP Jornada 720 and are using Opie on it and they have the spanish/latin-american keyboard... here is your keymap.

I will write something about how to get Linux going right on it soon, but here's the status report, 48 hours in.

This baby (unnamed yet) has:

  • 32MB of RAM
  • 1 GB of Flash
  • Wifi (802.11b pcmcia) + IRDA + Ethernet (pcmcia) + Anything once I find a 16-bit pcmcia-USB card (anyone has a spare and wants to recycle it? ;-)
  • Decent battery life (6 hours use with wifi, 9 without)
  • A keyboard
  • A decent screen (640x240)
  • A decent Linux-based GUI (Opie)
  • A somewhat erratic touchscreen

So, what can I do with it:

  • Email
  • Web browsing ( With Konqueror goodness )
  • Programming (Python, even PyQt2!). They keyboard and screen are surprisingly decent.
  • eBook reading. This is the most important one. In my work, I spend a lot of time waiting. Waiting for the train to arrive, for the trip to end, for someone to come to a meeting, for the waiter to bring my meal, for stuff to compile, for stuff to download... maybe I wait 3 hours a day. So I read. And this screen (long and somewhat thin) is quite spectacular for reading. Opie-reader is pretty good.
  • MP3 and Video player (haven't used it yet). I have streaming TV at home, courtesy of CherryTV (check the links at the left). This should work great when Rosario wants to see Montecristo and I'd rather see Penn & Teller's show.
  • General PIM stuff. Although I tend to keep that stuff in my head and my phone.

The bad side:

  • The bizarre screen aspect ratio confuses many configuration dialogs.
  • Almost no game works unless you rotate the screen.
  • The keyboard configuration took a while, and is not perfect yet ( I can't make dead_acute work for some reason)
  • The extra buttons don't work (external audio recorder, and alarm light-button)
  • I can't find a way to bind the function keys to apps in Opie
  • The reset button doesn't work (it's now a hang button)
  • Suspend is not really suspend on Linux (for unavoidable hardware reasons), so it spends battery when suspended (may last 12 hours or so, I think).
  • The only way to really turn it off is to take out the battery (not as bad as it sounds).
  • If you do that, it takes about one minute to boot.

So, I am using it more as a laptop (although a really, really small one, with very, very good battery life :-) than as a PDA.

The small memory and CPU means I can't run very demanding stuff, but I never seem to do that, anyway.

And of course, the really bad thing: it's so much fun to hack with, I have trouble working!

All in all, a great toy, lots of fun, and rather useful.

CherryTV

A simple (yeah, sure!) solution so you can watch TV on all the computers in your home. CherryTV!

It's small, it's cherryPowered, and it does work.