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[News] Review of the Openmoko WikiReader and Some E-Readers Based on Linux

  • Subject: [News] Review of the Openmoko WikiReader and Some E-Readers Based on Linux
  • From: Roy Schestowitz <newsgroups@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Tue, 29 Dec 2009 16:08:33 +0000
  • Followup-to: comp.os.linux.advocacy
  • Newsgroups: comp.os.linux.advocacy
  • User-agent: KNode/4.3.1
Hash: SHA1

Openmoko's WikiReader

,----[ Quote ]
| Openmoko, the company that first gained 
| attention for its Linux-based phone 
| platform, launched a new pocket-sized open 
| source product in time for this holiday 
| season, the WikiReader. The WikiReader is an 
| inexpensive ($99), low-power, 4-inch square 
| touchscreen LCD display device pre-loaded 
| with the text of three million Wikipedia 
| pages on a microSD card. In the smartphone 
| era, skeptics might dismiss the device as 
| woefully underpowered, but to the open 
| source community the more pertinent question 
| is what else can it do?
| [...]
| For today, however, the product makes for a 
| fun stocking stuffer for the family hacker. 
| Openmoko is positioning the device in its 
| advertising as a way to get content into the 
| hands of the "75% of the world [that] is 
| offline" â including people in airplanes or 
| on beaches, and "most everywhere." The 
| WikiReader certainly does that; several 
| online reviews have praised its value in 
| museums and tourist locations, where data 
| plan charges would make a connected device 
| prohibitively expensive to operate.


Not all ereaders are the same

,----[ Quote ]
| As we count down to end of 2009, the 
| emerging star of this year's holiday 
| shopping season is shaping up to be the 
| electronic book reader (or e-reader). From 
| Amazon's Kindle to Barnes and Noble's 
| forthcoming Nook, e-readers are starting to 
| transform how we buy and read books in the 
| same way mp3s changed how we buy and listen 
| to music. 



Hands-on: OpenMoko WikiReader is simple, appealing

,----[ Quote ]
| OpenMoko's WikiReader is a unique gadget with
| a single function. The simple handheld device
| stores the text of over 3 million Wikipedia
| entries, enabling convenient offline access to
| the popular Internet encyclopedia. We have
| conducted some hands-on testing with the new
| product and found it to be surprisingly
| compelling despite its limitations.


More changes at Openmoko

,----[ Quote ]
| Former Openmoko employees have already started redesigning the Freerunner
| hardware (gta02-core) using only Free Software tools. Werner Almesberger,
| working with many others, has made great progress. Recently, we have released
| more information to accelerate their efforts. In the coming weeks, all the
| design information will be handed over to the community along with all of
| openmoko.org (Wiki, GIT, Trac, Planet, ...). Openmoko Inc. then will act as
| the sponsor of this effort. We will continue to fund all necessary server
| infrastructure and support, in areas where corporate help is needed, future
| open phone development. (Parts of this process will require legal work - so I
| request your patience.)

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