pavelmachek's Journal

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26th December 2006

2:32pm: Olympus c-765 and crappy ui
I hate hate hate that olympus c-765. Its user interface is brain-dead,
with _very_ non obvious side effects. Enable multiple-picture mode,
and your flash stops working. It took me quite a while to figure out.
Now I hit another nasty side effect. Turn on audio recording, and
camera will not let you zoom while recording. Oops?

Yes, I realize that its zoom motor is just loud, but I was trying to
capture running horses at zoo, and needed that zoom. I'd have deleted
the audio track at the computer, anyway...

I was looking at some SLR reviews... and I still don't think if SLR is right
model for me. Yep, controls are nice... but c-765 has them, too, you just have
to go through the menu. OTOH zoom from 1x to 10x is very easy on c-765, and I'd
have to exchange lens to do that on SLR... Exchange _expensive_ lenses... Plus SLR
is unable to record video...

21st December 2006

10:08am: Phone software for sx1 is now available on sourceforge. I decided to call it "tui", for telephone user interface. Project is at .../projects/tui.

China mandates common charger plugs for cellphones... which is great news. I'm tired of having to carry 4+ chargers with me. News at techdirt.

Opera mini just got more useful: some Russian hackers hacked it a lot (including more windows, wow!). It is at I just wonder how to get any version of opera-mini to run on sx1... it keeps claiming connection does not work -- even for sx1 version downloaded from Russia. Plus... can someone recommend good email client for sx1? I'd like to access my suse email from cellphone, unfortunately that needs imaps. sx1 does imaps fine against atrey, but not against I guess I should just improve mujmail...

BTW mujmail... is slowly getting more useful. It now contains on-device caching, and nicer progress indicantion, thanks to Sontung. It is at sourceforge, in javaphone project.

(edited the entry to fix urls.)

13th December 2006

2:06pm: Dialing and receiving calls on sx1
You can get tarball at

Incoming calls now work (siemens does vibrations in hardware!), and battery/signal status now works. (Outgoing calls worked before). I added simple vcard parser, with search. PIN entry is supported (but be careful not to kill your SIM). "Exec selected script" feature added.

Now... this is actually usable on sx1... but with 5hours battery life, sx1 is not too usable itself. Help wanted, especially suggestions how to make it graphical. "Console telephone" is a lot of fun, and very simple, but graphics display uses display space a bit better...

(I even have an ascii art battery/signal indicators :-)

7th December 2006

7:34pm: First call on sx1 (with linux & open-source front-end, anyway)
I hacked console application for mobile front-end, and was able to do the first call with it... Thanks to Vladimir for all the support. (Well, it is currently possible to start a call, but not to end it; but i guess that should be easy).

Harald: congrats on your OpenMoko project. Yes, I'm looking forward to your in-kernel multiplexer.. and I guess I'll need to move AT+CMUX handling inside kernel, too, because sx1 needs multiplexer to work in order to charge the battery, drive the sound card, etc... Crappy hardware :-(.

27th November 2006

11:51pm: Debugging nVidia problems is illegal (and sx1 progress)
Did you know, that nVidia problems are illegal to debug? Section 2.1.3:
No Reverse Engineering. Customer may not reverse engineer, decompile, or
disassemble the SOFTWARE, nor attempt in any other manner to obtain the
source code.

I belive we should disable oops printing with nVidia binary modules loaded, so that
users do not accidentaly reverse engineer it ;-).
I talked with Vovan today, and apparently sx1 port is in better shape
than I thought. sx1 is misdesigned and for most things (battery
charging and sound, for example) it is neccessary to communicate with
eGold GSM coprocessor. Unfortunately to do that, multiplexing is
needed, and that is only implemented in userspace.

That means that sx1 is *very* depended on userspace helpers. In
future, it should be possible to push multiplexing into kernel (Harald
may be working on that one?) and fix that uglyness in matter
transparent for userspace.

...ouch, and that thinkfinger thingie... It does not work on many machines. It should be relatively easy to do that, just do dump of working communication (binary-only driver is available even for linux) using usbmon, dump again using thinkfinger, compare and figure out what the critical difference is. I can't do that as I do not have hardware.

26th November 2006

9:13pm: gaia sources
...are now offline, and I think that's a shame. Does anybody still have a copy? (I think goodling for it would be bad idea :-). I never agreed to google's terms of service, so playing with it should be fair game for me...

(Plus, I believe google is violating their "don't do evil" rule here.)

19th November 2006

2:53am: ThinkFinger has new home
So... it seems there's quite a lot of interest in hack called thinkfinger. It now has new home, at, and thanks to Timo's great work, it is now library with autotools, etc... that should make bioapi integration easy.

(Heh, I guess we need some webpages... and we should probably add an mailing list. But at least code is there in the svn. If some web designer is lurking around, yes, we could probably use your help :-).
2:19am: Vista cracked
I had long debate with Rolf Karlsson about security of Windows Vista (with my line something as "hope they get it right this time; getting security right means they loose all the home users immediately, meaning they are irrelevant in few years", in Czech republic, anyway).

So now it looks like I was wrong; Vista were cracked at the day of release. (Or should I say two months before release?) It is apparently easier to crack Windows then buy them ;-).

Some info here.

I just hope that their DRM is as secure as their installer ;-).

8th November 2006

9:25pm: OpenMoko linux phone
...looks nice. Actually, it looks very nice; motorola had chance to do something like this with their a780 line, but they failed :-(. Being open really matters here.

Still, it is touchscreen phone => not the beast you can control in a bus on a rough road, not a beast you can use while walking (needs both hands), and not a beast you'd like to use while riding a horse. I've actually used nokia 6230 for navigation (compass, maps) and sms communication while riding arabian mare, and going pretty fast... attempt to do that with touchscreen phone would certainly result in me sitting on the ground, and mare moving away at 40kph. Plus, there's no word on phone's weight.

Details here. Ouch, it looks like it has _no_ keyboard at all. I guess that's going to suck for single-hand control... it does not seem to have bluetooth (bad!) and no word about UMTS (but I assume the answer is "no").

So... they picked the easy target -- touchscreen phone is relatively simple to do, because all the infrastructure can be used. Still, bringing it to market is probably not the easy task, so thank you, FIC. (Now... anyone wants to send me one of those to play with? Is it likely it will be possible to buy one in Czech republic/europe?)

6th November 2006

10:43pm: Microsoft agreement and sx1
So I got useful linux running on siemens sx1... graphics now works here. I could even do call with some hacks... Unfortunately, I killed symbian in the process, and so I can't charge my battery any more. That's bad.

Our management decided to do "Microsoft promotes SUSE Linux" agreement... I believe it is very bad idea for variety of reasons, but apparently management thinks they can get money from Mickey$oft... lets see. Hopefully GPL protects Linux even from our management.

26th October 2006

9:53pm: Shell on sx1
...ok, so I'm stupid. I did not look at the initscript... and they change usb0's ethernet address, breaking nfsroot. Once I removed offending lines from scripts... voila, I can telnet to sx1. Thanks to team!

/dev # cat /proc/cpuinfo
Processor : ARM925Tid(wb) rev 2 (v4l)
BogoMIPS : 74.75
Features : swp half thumb
CPU implementer : 0x54
CPU architecture: 4T
CPU variant : 0x0
CPU part : 0x925
CPU revision : 2
Cache type : write-back
Cache clean : cp15 c7 ops
Cache lockdown : not supported
Cache format : Harvard
I size : 16384
I assoc : 2
I line length : 16
I sets : 512
D size : 8192
D assoc : 2
D line length : 16
D sets : 256

Now... question is... how to get framebuffer running? Backlight is on, I can cat files to framebuffer (and read them back), but see nothing on the display :-(.

13th October 2006

11:39am: qtopia phone edition
I just checked again, and no, qtopia phone edition is _not_ available for download.

Does anyone know about similar software (free?)? I guess I'll need something for sx1... unfortunately that beast only has 16MB ram and no touchscreen. I'm not sure if X+gomunicator will fit, and it would be "interesting" to make it work without touchscreen...

(Oh and btw the sx1 now boots to linux for me. Unfortunately, screen does not yet work, and cable is very flakey).

10th October 2006

7:05pm: QTopia phone edition
While trolltech tries to paint themselves as big friends of opensource (and they mostly are)... they will not tell you that QTopia phone edition is not available under opensource license. Actually, you don't get to see the source code unless you pay $BIGNUM of money... and their web is confusing so it took me hour-or-so trying to figure that out.

So you were warned... and if you get their greenphone... it may be nice toy, but you are not getting sources for important parts. I guess I should start developing user interface based on phone keypad... having sx1 running linux is useless if you can only use it by telneting in it..

2nd October 2006

12:20am: uboot on sx1, and Firefox stupidity
Firefox went crazy: "if you want to call it firefox in your distribution, we have to see the patches first" (here). I'd suggest you to switch to galeon or something...

...or maybe... just use "firefox" and "mozilla" in as many contexts as possible, ignore their trademark, to make sure they loose the trademark...

I got uboot to work on sx1, it needs lots of special setup, including special kermit config (that bite me). Now I can upload the kernel... unfortunately then the watchdog kicks in, and reboots it. Apparently firmware patch is possible, but that may require Windoze.

28th September 2006

1:03am: sx1 to play with
So I got sx1 to play with... fortunately it was relatively cheap at 3000Kc. Its keyboard is crap; bad backlight, and pretty much impossible to type on. OTOH I was lucky and got 32MB one, and uboot seems to work. Unfortunately I do not have serial cable, so I can not quite verify it.

27th September 2006

10:42am: collie 2.6, and siemens sx1
There seems to be linux port to siemens sx1... wow. Maybe that's good enough reason to get a new toy?
It seems to be in pretty good state, see

Now I know why collie is running so slowly... it is running with only
16MB of ram (out of 64MB), ouch. It is amazing that it managed to boot
to X.

Strange thing with software keyboard... it works... but only for
characters that are on hardware keyboard. There are no numbers on
hardware keyboard => software keyboard will not let me type
them. Fortunately xmonobut works, so I should be able to cut&paste the numbers.

24th September 2006

11:39pm: gpe boots on collie 2.6
...things were relatively easy after getting touchscreen to work. pango-querymodule can be used to recreate /etc/pango/pango.module ... but how do you do that without working ">" key?

Fortunately shift-space aka "|" works, so solution is relatively easy... pango-querymodule | tee /etc/pango/pango.module. Now I can get gpe booting, asks me for my username/password, complains about missing image loaders a lot, and then presents me with (dead) "Home" screen.

Funny, on second boot, "Home" screen actually works, and I can navigate around menus. Entering games, but no games installed ;-). This actually looks like usable system!

Trying to launch system info gives me "couldn't recognize the image file format for file /usr/share/gpe/pixmaps/default/save.png" and machine started to be _really_ slow... system info will not start, but gcalculator seems to be okay (but its startup took 10seconds or so :-() and xshells work. Good. I guess it would be fun to get gpsdrive working here, but I fear collie is just not powerful enough for _that_.
11:06pm: Collie: touchscreen now works in X
Start with openzaurus, use gpe image (we want X, right?). Use kernel with my patches (from git); I'm not sure if openzaurus carries all the neccessary patches.

oz includes wrong ts.conf, edit it to say:
module_raw input
module linear

for some reason, oz does not create /dev/input/*, which is actually neccessary for touchscreen. Hack initscripts so that following code is started before X:

mkdir /dev/input
mknod /dev/input/event0 c 13 64
mknod /dev/input/event1 c 13 65

xtscal should now work, and touchscreen should work. Keyboard map is unusable, unfortunately. (I have not figured out how to enter numbers and special characters). gpe-based programs seem to segfault... and only left half of messages makes it to the screen:

(gpe-calculator:3592):: Pango-WARNING
were found. Pango will not work correc
there was an error in the creation of
You may be able to recreate this file
Segmentation fault

...guess I'll have to play a bit more.
9:58pm: Using children for spying goals...
Gonzales wants to spy on you, using child pornography as an excuse.

Funny, when people copy music online, it is assumed to hurt music industry. So... to stop people from producing more child pornography, it should be enough to copy existing one as widely as possible, no?

Anyway, what happens in US is crazy. Any picture of naked child is immediately child pornography, and used as an excuse for more spying.

As a bonus, here's picture of one-year-old trying to make love with 6-year old. No children were harmed while producing this photo.

20th September 2006

3:56pm: Indian Summer 2006
SUSE Labs conference was immediately followed by "Indian Summer" event... We had quite a lot of fun (including going down the rope and going up the horse). Some pictures are on my web. I did talk about power consumption of notebooks, available nearby.

14th September 2006

10:47am: Motorola A1200 to play with
So motorola has linux phone... nice! Unfortunately the phone is mainly targetted at Chinese market => not so nice. User interface is not good, flickers a lot, is inconsistently translated, and I do think you can use it without using touchscreen. Oh and the joystick is horrible.

Anyway, having linux-based phone is cool. Motorola did they best to prevent you from hacking it.. you are expected to use java for development. (At least it can install .jar from transflash card -- but you need to use "My Favourites"). Fortunately telnet is possible, some info is in openezx wiki, but the basics are:

install linlodaer
install telnet/smbd
ifconfig usb0

Being able to telnet into phone is nice... having selinux preventing you from acccessing system folders sucks :-(.

Oh, and for the x60 and fingerprint reader.. if suspend does not work for you, fingerprint reader is probably not guilty -- it works okay for me. Make sure you use vanilla kernel.

12th September 2006

6:36pm: Don't follow my way
Marcin Juszkiewicz wrote comment on my collie entries ( -- and of course he's right, I should have just used mkfs.jffs2 -- unfortunately I do not seem to have it installed on my system. Yes, you'll end up with broken system.

I also don't think I can run ipkg anything... I'd have to run it on the host, and that is not easy. (And I could not even run it at collie, as keymap prevents me from typing "-"). Is /etc/ts.conf really used by X? I took a look at sl-5600, and it did not seem to have ts.conf... Or maybe I'm just confused.

10th September 2006

12:09am: X running on collie-2.6
I found out that gpe image from openzaurus can be worked around to get X shell. initrd can actually be mounted, if you do

losetup /dev/loop0 initrd.bin
modprobe block2mtd block2mtd=/dev/loop0,$[65536*4]
mount -tjffs2 /dev/mtdblock0 /mnt

(it took me quite a while to figure out). But you'll quickly find out you can not write anything to it. Freeing little space will not help, you have to free a _lot_ to be able to do even small writes. Just rm -r usr/lib/ipkg -- it will be awhile before _that_ will work.

Now peek into /etc/ts.conf. It says module_raw collie; oops, that should be module_raw input, and you'll also need /dev/input* . Unfortunately, that is not enough to get mouse in X to work :-(. (Can anyone help?)

So next step.. getting at least shell. Just edit
etc/X11/Xinit.d/30xTs_Calibrate , include /usr/bin/rxvt as a second line. Shell actually works (wow!)... unfortunately only about half of keyboard works, anything special does not, and Fn does not work. 12keymap should initialize it, and /proc/cpuinfo looks as expected... I'll play a bit more, but unix shell without special characters and numbers is not easy.

Ouch and for person asking about thinkfinger & PAM integration... be little patient, Timo is working on that.

8th September 2006

1:28pm: Collie-2.6 now supported by openzaurus
Wow, and big thanks to openzaurus team.

Well, and then some problems... I'm testing (perhaps some shorter versions would be nice?).

bootstrap image complains about no altboot config, wrong kernel, then hangs with splashscreen. I'll have to figure out how to turn the splash off... some hint (alt-leftarrow) flashes there briefly, but I do not know how to press alt on collie. fn-lshift-left nor fn-rshift-left helps (AFAICT, my keyboard is old and arrows are no longer reliable).

opie image also stops in splash screen, this time with "ln /etc/resolv.conf: No space left on device". I lost my patience after 4 minutes-or-so.

Ok, moving on to gpe image.. wow, gpe got past "splashscreen", I'm now calibrating touchscreen... except that touchscreen does not work at this point. Is there some trick? But X seem to work, and that is good. I'll need to figure out how to break into shell somewhere.

6th September 2006

11:04pm: thinkfinger is still broken on many machines, unfortunately I do not have one to reproduce. To get some interesting dumps:

mount /dev/zero -tdebugfs /mnt
cd /mnt/usbmon/
cat 5t run binary application. It is easier if it works for you :-). Then figure out what is wrong with thinkfinger...

If you get this far, (and can't figure anything obvious) let me know, I have dumps where it works and sed script to make dumps more readable.

Good luck!
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