[maemo-developers] [maemo-developers] Too busy to accept help? I'm not complaining

From: Shawn Gordon shawn at thekompany.com
Date: Wed Apr 19 23:06:19 EEST 2006
At 12:23 PM 4/19/2006, Philippe De Swert wrote:
>Hello Shawn,
>On Wed, 2006-04-19 at 11:59 -0700, Shawn Gordon wrote:
> > I've already got Nils slamming me privately because I dared to
> > mention Qtopia, but let me provide some perspective as a company who
> > was very successful with Qtopia and the Sharp Zaurus and what Sharp
> > and Trolltech did both right and wrong that Nokia could learn from (I
> > don't care if they use Qtopia at this stage, I just honestly think it
> > would have been faster and cheaper than going the route they did, but
> > I am not privy to the information that went in to making that decision).
>Why would Qtopia be faster and cheaper?

faster because it is done, has been used, refined, debugged and 
developed for for years, so other than device drivers in the kernel 
it wouldn't have taken hardly any time at all to get it up and running.

cheaper - I'm assuming cheaper based on what I know of the licensing 
costs and the costs to hire a bunch of developers for years to 
develop and support the software.  Nokia is not going to just rely on 
the open source community for something that they depend on, they 
will certainly have their own developers and these are going to be 
far more expensive than simply paying a small per unit license cost 
(I'm talking ones of dollars per unit).

>I am not trying to troll here
>but both have wide support in the Free Software community. (However in
>the embedded space GTK might have an edge. GPE is atm better supported
>and has more active developers than Opie for example. And I am not
>stating that because I happen to be involved with GPE, but because both
>Opie and GPe are involved with familiar we know about each other
>projects and we even co-operate on certain parts.)

Keep in mind that Opie is simply a fork of the GPL version of Qtopia, 
so they get the advantage of all the things I spelled out above.

> > Now by the time the Zaurus was commercially available, my company
> > already had a dozen products running on it, maybe more, and there was
> > a big and healthy open source movement that was also producing
> > software, I don't remember how many apps, but it was a good amount
> > and grew very rapidly.
>Well Nokia might not have had applictions readily available before the
>product was released. But I do remember porting an app in the maemo SDK
>before the device was actually available
> > What was done right:
> >
> > 1.Sharp actually located about 50 companies and individual developers
> > 2.They worked with Handango to create a web site where commercial and
> > 3.Trolltech hired a liaison to work directly with the embedded
> > community and keep the line of communication open.
>Ok. That indeed are valid points that could contribute to success with
>an "open" project. However *again* I see no reason why Qtopia would have
>been an advantage. In it's own right I believe the technical choice GTK
>vs QT(opia) has nothing to do with the success of these projects. As you
>point out political choices are much more important. Nokia has supported
>Gnome and has hired professional companies to support them as can be
>seen in Ari Jaaksi's presentation from Boston see (slide 7):
>http://www.kotiposti.net/jaaksi/ME9_LinuxWorld_2006_AriJaaksi_.pdf .
>So the one thing they really need to do is having somebody that can put
>time in co-ordinating the community and pass on all interesting
>developments to the people in Nokia who take the decisions. This last
>part has not yet been done. And if they manage to pick up the good
>things from the community it will become a killer product. So they
>definitely need to work on point 3. Apart from that the used toolkit
>point is completely moot. The 770 would probabely be as good/bad as it
>is now regardless of GTK or QT.

I'm not espousing the benefits of one technology over another here, 
I'm simply making the point of how the business was and was not well 
handled in my opinion.

>| Philippe De Swert
>| GPE developer: http://gpe.handhelds.org
>| Emdebian developer: http://www.emdebian.org
>| Please do not send me documents in a closed
>| format.(*.doc,*.xls,*.ppt)
>| Use the open alternatives. (*.pdf,*.ps,*.html,*.txt)
>| http://www.gnu.org/philosophy/no-word-attachments.html


Shawn Gordon

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