Sunday, 30 May 2010

Updating the N900 to PR1.2

I have just completed updating my Nokia N900 to PR1.2. The update was very smooth. I just went into the App manager, tapped on the update icon, and around 130MB later, it was installed. The aspects of the upgrade I have already noticed is:
  • GPS is faster and Ovi Maps has a better interface
  • Browser has portrait mode switched on and working
  • You can choose to only SMS mobile numbers
  • Things start up and multi-task faster
  • I had it multi-tasking 17 different tasks, and there was little slowdown, and must faster swap between them
Ax has also upgraded his N900, but for some reason, he had to do it via the Nokia PC Suite. He also had to re-install his applications, whereas my installation was smooth, with no noticeable corruption of data or applications.

Lastly, it appears that the N900 is finally being sold in Australia - well at least by the Optus carrier.
Optus offering N900

Here is the new kernel, as well as some screenshots:

BusyBox v1.10.2 (Debian built-in shell (ash) Enter 'help' for a list of built-in commands.

mullen:~# uname -a
Linux mullen 2.6.28-omap1 #1 PREEMPT Thu Apr 15 09:47:09 EEST 2010 armv7l unknown

N900 Desktop 1 PR 1.2Desktop #1

N900 Desktop 2 PR 1.2Desktop #2 - With "living" wallpaper (this one actually drips with the code)

N900 Desktop 3 PR 1.2Desktop #3

N900 Desktop 4 PR 1.2Desktop #4

N900 Application List PR 1.2Application List

N900 About Product PR 1.2"About product" page

N900 Ovi Maps PR 1.2Ovi Maps new interface

Saturday, 29 May 2010

Celtics make 2010 NBA Finals!

Well done to the Boston Celtics for making to 2010 NBA Finals. In the journey to making the finals, they have had to go up against some of the toughest teams in the NBA, including the Miami Heat, the Cleveland Cavaliers (the #1 team in the NBA for 2009-2010), as well as the Orlando Magic.

Tuesday, 4 May 2010

Multitasking on Nokia N900 and Ubuntu's new 10.04

I recently tried to push the limits of multitasking (running more than one application) on my Nokia N900. I have not reached the limit (yet). Here are some screenshots of what I've tried:

1st Desktop on N9001st desktop on N900

2nd Desktop on N9002nd Desktop on N900

3rd Desktop on N9003rd desktop on N900

Multi-tasking on N900Multi-tasking on N900

At this point, I am running 14 application on the N900 as well as the 4 desktops. I do not have anything on the 4th desktop, hence why I have omitted it as a screenshot. It does not appear to be slowing down the performance of the N900 down at all. Some of the applications open include:
After transferring some large files onto the N900, I encountered my first bug. It was in the form of corruption of the VFAT /home/user/MyDocs directory. Fortunately, there is already a documented fix for the error - being that the filesystem is "read-only". The long term fix (also documented via a link on the same page) is to convert the VFAT filesystem to ext3. Fixing the VFAT bug (using fsck) caused a second bug - a double directory listing in the N900's file browser. The fix was also documented, being to get the number of files in /home/use/MyDocs to under 32 individual files. This will be properly addressed in the next firmware release.

I've also updated my main computer to Ubuntu 10.04. It is very early so far, but there appears to be a lot of integration with social networking sites, as well as being able to access all the chat / IM protocols they use. I don't know whether this is due to demand from the current users of Ubuntu, or whether it shows that Ubuntu wants to capture a more "youthful and chatty" audience. It also appears that Ubuntu is also starting up services in the form of Ubuntu One.

Overall, it appears to be another good effort from the guys at Ubuntu to produce a usable desktop. Below is a screenshot of my desktop, while I was using GIMP to edit the pictures you see in this post:

Editing images on Ubuntu 10.04Editing images on Ubuntu 10.04

Sunday, 2 May 2010

Additional repositories on the N900

I've added some additional repositories to my N900. Kitty Kat's N900 is pretty much out of the box. I do not think she will alter hers as much as I will mine. In that regard, I don't believe I will alter mine as much as Ax will alter his.

Over time, we will all compare our N900s. Hopefully opening up to new repositories will not mean a lack of stability of the phone / tablet itself. For those that are interested, my repositories look like this:

mullen:/etc/apt/sources.list.d# cat hildon-application-manager.list
deb ./
deb ./
deb ./
deb fremantle free non-free
deb fremantle free non-free

Ax's look like this:

$ cat /etc/apt/sources.list.d/hildon-application-manager.list
deb ./
deb ./
deb ./
deb fremantle free non-free
deb fremantle free non-free
deb fremantle free non-free
deb fremantle free non-free
deb ./
deb fremantle/tools free non-free

In case you are wondering how to add repositories to your own N900, there are many tutorials on the web.