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Ralsina.Me — El sitio web de Roberto Alsina

Publicaciones sobre eee (publicaciones antiguas, página 1)

Thinking in 800x480: Web browsing

Po­de­mos ha­cer lo ha­bi­tua­l, mo­do de pan­ta­lla com­ple­ta, y esas co­sas, pe­ro pa­ra mu­chos si­tios 800 pixels es sim­ple­men­te de­ma­sia­do an­gos­to.

Se pue­de ha­cer que las pá­gi­nas "en­tren" me­jor en un an­cho li­mi­ta­do re­du­cien­do el ta­ma­ño de la ti­po­gra­fía. Una bue­na fuen­te de 8 pun­tos de­be­ría ser le­gi­ble en esa pan­ta­lla, ya que uno es­tá cer­ca de la pan­ta­lla.

Sin em­bar­go, eso no ha­ce na­da pa­ra di­se­ños ba­sa­dos en pixel­s, y por el ta­ma­ño de las imá­ge­nes.

Sin em­bar­go, des­pués de leer que Qt 4.4 in­clu­ye we­bkit y per­mi­te po­ner wi­dge­ts en un QGra­phi­cs­View, em­pe­cé a pen­sar, es­to es­tá mal.

Lo que uno quie­re con una pan­ta­lla li­mi­ta­da es tex­to en el ta­ma­ño nor­mal y la pá­gi­na en un ta­ma­ño me­nor.

Por eso mi idea es:

  • Agran­­dar la ti­­po­­­gra­­fía. Ej: 12 pun­­to­­s.

  • Mo­s­­trar la pá­­gi­­na en un wi­­dget we­­bkit de 1200­­x720 pixe­l­s.

  • Po­­­ner el wi­­dget en una QGra­­phi­­csS­­ce­­ne, y re­­du­­ci­r­­lo 33%

El re­sul­ta­do es una pá­gi­na web com­ple­ta pe­ro que mi­de 800­x480.

Por su­pues­to se de­be­ría po­der cam­biar to­dos es­tos pa­ra­me­tros con un úni­co con­tro­l. Si la pá­gi­na es de­ma­sia­do an­cha pa­ra ver­la en 800­x480 con fuen­tes de 8 pun­to­s...

Pro­ba­mos 1000­x600 con fuen­tes de 10 pun­to­s, y re­du­ci­mos al ta­ma­ño de la pan­ta­lla.

Si­gue sien­do de­ma­sia­do an­cho? Pro­ba­mos 1200­x720, fuen­tes de 12 pun­tos y re­du­ci­mos 33%.

Po­si­bles ayu­da­s:

  • De­­be­­­ría ve­r­­se me­­jor con fuen­­tes sin an­­tia­­lia­s, ya que la re­­du­c­­ción de ta­­ma­­ño ha­­ría las fuen­­tes con an­­tia­­lia­­sing de­­ma­­sia­­do bo­­­rro­­sas. Una fuen­­te an­­cha y abie­r­­ta se va a ver me­­jo­­­r.

  • Las ba­­rras de scro­­­ll se van a ver apla­s­­ta­­da­s, creo. Pro­­­ba­­ble­­men­­te los che­­ck­­bo­­­xes y ra­­dio bu­­ttons se van a ver ma­­l. Pa­­ra arre­­glar eso se ne­­ce­­si­­ta ma­­gia mas avan­­za­­da que la mía ;-)

Por su­pues­to que ha­bría que pro­bar­lo, pe­ro cal­cu­lo que fun­cio­na me­jor que las al­ter­na­ti­va­s. Si tu­vie­ra un Py­Qt 4.4 lo in­ten­ta­ría yo mis­mo ;-)

¡Ya tengo mi Asus eee!

En rea­li­dad que­ría la 4G, no la sur­f, pe­ro mi sue­gra me la trae co­mo un fa­vo­r, y no ne­ce­si­to la we­b­ca­m, así que la úni­ca di­fe­ren­cia es la RAM sol­da­da, que no pen­sa­ba ac­tua­li­zar de to­dos mo­do­s.

What I want for christmas (The cool new trend on preloaded Linux)

Dear fictional character that oppreses the workers of
the North Pole:

This christmas, I want an Asus eee PC, an Everex gPC,
and some bare white box with a nice Phoenix PC 3.0 BIOS.

Why am I ask­ing the red men­ace from the north for these item­s?

Well, they do have one thing in com­mon: Lin­ux. An­oth­er is that they are con­sumer box­es, not server­s.

For many years, one of the huge ad­van­tages win­dows had was that it came pre­loaded with most PC­s. This en­abled peo­ple to turn a blind eye to win­dows in­stal­la­tion and con­fig­u­ra­tion since it was done by Some­one Else (T­M).

Since get­ting Lin­ux has be­come much eas­i­er in the last 10 years [1] this has been very frus­trat­ing. Imag­ine you had some­thing you gave away for free, but peo­ple kept us­ing some­thing more ex­pen­sive be­cause they had to pay for it any­way!

That itch­es. If Lin­ux was not cho­sen be­cause it was in­fe­ri­or for the task at hand, that's one thing, but not even be­ing able to be test­ed be­cause the oth­er prod­uct was bun­dled and paid for? An­noy­ing.

Of course on servers this worked dif­fer­ent­ly. The OS was not the ex­pen­sive part, and was pre­loaded less of­ten. Cor­po­ra­tions have pre­ar­ranged li­cens­ing terms, and adding things to the mix is sim­pler.

But for con­sumer­s, preload­ing has been a huge prob­lem [2]

So, if the jol­ly tres­pass­er brings me what I or­dered, I will find the fol­low­ing:

  • Asus eee: A cheap sub­­note­­book with Lin­ux and KDE pre­load­ed.

  • Ev­erex gPC: A cheap Desk­­top with Lin­ux and En­­light­en­­men­t(!?) pre­load­ed.

  • Phoenix PC 3.0 BIOS: an em­bed­d­ed hy­per­vi­­sor and Lin­ux OS.

The eee is prob­a­bly the most ap­peal­ing. It's ide­al for many us­es:

  • Sales­­men who are now us­ing some un­­god­­ly Black­­ber­ry app (or worse)

  • Sys­tem and net­­work ad­min­s. Re­al­­ly. I would love to have a cheap note­­book I won't hes­­i­­tate bring­ing to a roof, a bar, the beach, what­ev­er. It would live in my bag. My cur­rent note­­book? Be­­sides weight­ing 8 pound­s, it's ex­pen­­sive and large. All I need are we­b­­pages email and SSH ses­­sion­s!

  • Kids and stu­­dents (it's cheap! You can buy a re­­place­­ment if he drops coffe on it!)

  • Ba­sic users and old peo­­ple. Re­al­­ly, an of­­fice-­­like thing and a web browser? And I can use it wher­ev­er there's wifi? Neat.

And it is go­ing to get a lot cheap­er, and it's go­ing to get a lot bet­ter. I ex­pect there will be a 32G­B, 10" mod­el by the end of next year for $350, and the cur­rent mod­el avail­able for $250 (after al­l, half the com­po­nents are cheap as dirt al­ready, on­ly flash is ex­pen­sive, and that's a fluke)

And so on and so forth. If Asus cre­ates a de­cent dock [3] and a nice rdif­f-back­up-based back­up so­lu­tion (it should be at least as nice as Ap­ple's Time Ma­chine), this box turns in­to my main com­put­er when­ev­er I am at home, and is a use­ful tool on the road. I re­al­ly can live with those spec­s.

The gPC is a bit hard­er to grasp.

First, it's even cheap­er. $200 is cheap. The CPU is slow­ish, but there are a whole range of tasks that are not CPU bound. I re­al­ly want one of those as a home serv­er. This is the first time I can see one of these ITX box­es as ac­tu­al­ly cheap not just small (in fact this one is not small at al­l).

  • I have a TV cap­­ture card, I could make a PVR out of it us­ing Lin­uxM­CE? It does have enough CPU for that (s­ince I am do­ing it with a slow­er box al­ready)

  • A file server? More than good enough for that.

  • A house­­guest com­put­er?

  • A MPD server?

  • All of the above?

And do all this while be­ing qui­et and pow­er-­ef­fi­cien­t? Neat!

And the Phoenix PC 3.0 BIOS sim­ply would be cool be­cause I can vir­tu­al­ize with­out jump­ing through any hoop­s. This one is still fuzzy for me, but I on­ly found out about it to­day. I need time for things to grow.

Why do I think these box­es mark a trend? Be­cause they are def­i­nite­ly low-end prod­uct­s. These are meant to be made by thou­sands and hun­dreds of thou­sand­s, and make small mon­ey on each.

The mak­ers are be­ing smart about pro­vid­ing as lit­tle func­tion­al­i­ty as they can and mak­ing them sim­ple, niche, con­sumer prod­ucts in­stead of mon­stru­osly pow­er­ful Lin­ux mon­sters (sor­ry for how ug­ly that sound­s).

An­oth­er fac­tor is the huge growth of web apps that work well on non-IE browsers. This is mak­ing the OS ir­rel­e­vant just like Net­scape hoped in 1996. If the OS is in­vis­i­ble, Lin­ux won.

So, Santa, for this christmas I ask for all these toys,
and if it has to be only one, please make it the Asus eee.

                                            Roberto Alsina

PS: and if you don't do your part, the raindeer's a goner!

Asus sucks at math.

This is just lazy, guys! Any­one who can guess change when buy­ing a pack of mints can guess this bet­ter than what you wrote!


Sales fig­ures since the re­lease have been as­tound­ing, with 200 pieces snapped up in 20 min­utes on Tai­wan's shop­ping chan­nel, ETTV Shop­ping - av­er­ag­ing an Eee PC sold ev­ery two sec­ond­s.

Let's see, that would be 200 pieces in 20 min­utes, 10 a min­ute, I guess that's one ev­ery 2 sec­onds plus/mi­nus 4 sec­ond­s. Or rather, just plus 4 sec­ond­s.

Read the whole Asus press re­lease here.

Way too excited about the Asus eee

Re­al­ly. I can imag­ine hav­ing one of these as my main com­put­er (with ex­ter­nal HD and mon­i­tor).

I prob­a­bly won't and use my ful­l-­size note­book or a desk­top when at home­/of­fice, but it should take me back to the days when I sim­ply car­ried my Li­bret­to ev­ery­where be­cause it was light enough.

Here's the best re­view I found so far.

Peo­ple wor­ry about the 4GB or 8GB "disk". If you keep your me­dia (ISOs, movies, mu­sic) on an ex­ter­nal HD, you prob­a­bly can have ev­ery­thing else there.

Us­ing rsync to keep two box­es synced... lots of po­ten­tial.

I am prob­a­bly buy­ing two of the cheap ones.

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