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Comments on: PalmSource Acquires China MobileSoft, Will Develop Palm OS for Linux

PalmSource today announced entry into an agreement for the acquisition of China MobileSoft Limited (CMS), a leading Chinese mobile phone software company with business operations headquartered with its wholly-owned subsidiary, MobileSoft Technology (Nanjing), in China. PalmSource has also announced plans to work closely with the Linux Community to develop a version of the Palm OS that will run on top of Linux.
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Palm OS on Linux

voice of chaos @ 12/8/2004 11:15:16 AM #
The last paragraph is the big announcement - they'll put Palm OS on top of China MobileSoft's mLinux. That is good news.

RE: Palm OS on Linux
pbarthelemy @ 12/8/2004 11:31:51 AM #
I remember that years ago, AmigaOS tried the cool-OS-on-top-of-linux thing...

It did not Amiga much them much...
The point is that PalmOS-under-linux will be inferior to customized linux... Well, maybe not technically inferior, but the price/overhead/cost/features ratios won't be good for PalmOS...

That's more a death announcement to me...
Farewell, palmOS...

RE: Palm OS on Linux
dq @ 12/8/2004 11:35:11 AM #
Big news - yes, good news - not so sure.

A PalmOS 6 device has not arrived yet and they are already announcing a new OS core? PalmOS 6 was supposed to use all the great technology they got from Be, right?

The best option for developpers is to stick to 68K apps and wait for the next OS...

Daniel

RE: Palm OS on Linux
JonAcheson @ 12/8/2004 12:08:49 PM #
mLinux info here:

http://www.chinamobilesoft.com/product/mlinux.asp



"All opinions posted are my own, and not those of my employers, who are appalled."

RE: Palm OS on Linux
treo007 @ 12/8/2004 12:11:49 PM #
Only took 2 comments for someone to sound the "death-knell". Some of you are just too predictable.

RE: Palm OS on Linux
statik @ 12/8/2004 12:13:41 PM #
hmmm, the mention of needing to recompile non PACE apps worrys me.

As for running on top of Linux? It might not of worked for the Amiga, but the same idea seems to be doing wonders for the Macintosh platform. Macs have really gained a lot of respect in the *nix community since OSX was released.

If PalmSource can pull it off, this could really open up a lot of new markets for them in non PDA areas. Palm OS on your TiVo anybody?


RE: Palm OS on Linux
Wolfgard @ 12/8/2004 12:58:19 PM #
What happened to the Cobalt kernel? Why switch to Linux so late in development? What happened to the Be technology in Cobalt? I think that's what everybody wants to know now.

I don't know if I should be happy with this news or not. Swithing the OS core is not as simple as it seems, and I doubt many apps would be compatible with the new operating system.

Sounds like they're skinning the palm interface over linux (ala Trolltech's Qtopia over linux on the Zaurus). I know that's bogus, but I just can't help thinking bout that.

pen & paper -> m515 -> Zire72 -> TH55 & Handera 330

RE: Palm OS on Linux
Michael Mace @ 12/8/2004 1:11:06 PM #
Wolfgard wrote:

>What happened to the Cobalt kernel?

Still there in Palm OS Cobalt. Palm OS for Linux is an addition to the line, not a replacement.


>Why switch to Linux so late in development?

We didn't switch, we're adding. We'd been thinking of supporting Linux for some time. CMS had already done a lot of Linux work, letting us accelerate our development.


>What happened to the Be technology in Cobalt?

Still there, and we plan that it'll be in Palm OS for Linux as well. We'll be moving the Palm OS Cobalt software frameworks (graphics, multimedia, wireless, etc) onto Linux. Much of the Be technology went into them.


>Swithing the OS core is not as simple as it seems,

Agreed.


>I doubt many apps would be compatible with the new operating system.

Our intent is to include the Palm OS emulator in Palm OS for Linux, so properly-written 68k apps should run. We'll also support apps written for the new "Protein" APIs in Palm OS Cobalt. Those apps may require a simple recompile in order to run in Palm OS for Linux.


>Sounds like they're skinning the palm interface over linux

I don't know what's the best term to use, but the way we're describing it is that we'll put the Palm OS interface, apps, and frameworks on the Linux kernel.

Hope this helps.

Mike
CCO, PalmSource

RE: Palm OS on Linux
Timothy Rapson @ 12/8/2004 1:59:02 PM #
This is a nearly perfect move. Linux is super and Palmsource is/was a standard in mobiles. I really dreamed that Palm OS5 was going to be Linux with a Palm OS4 emulator to run legacy apps. But, if this comes at OS 6 level it is still welcome news. There will be thousands of apps for this kind of handheld. It will likely result in a lot of pure Linux handhelds being brought out too. Good news. Overdue, but good.



RE: Palm OS on Linux
Strider_mt2k @ 12/8/2004 2:53:40 PM #
I guess it sounds cool, but didn't PalmOS used to be able to stand on it's own? -and not all that long ago?

I know the buzz says there will be separate OSs, but watch the gemstones go flying out the window if this takes off.


I'm honestly left simply hoping for the best.
I really hope this result in us the users getting better operating on more and better systems.



similar to Mac OS on Unix
hotpaw4 @ 12/8/2004 3:11:39 PM #
The Mac OS Classic GUI and API on top of BSD Unix has been a big win for Apple. An even bigger win was Microsoft layering Windows 1.0 - 3.x on top
of MS-DOS.

The PalmOS GUI and library API's on top of a linux kernal would certainly bring a more attractive, familiar and consistant user interface to the general public than most of the other linux/X-based attempts around.


RE: Palm OS on Linux
LiveFaith @ 12/8/2004 3:17:20 PM #
Michael Mace,
Thanks for taking the time to share your thoughts. Sounds like a strategy with all sorts of good opportunities. Palm on PDA, phone, tablet, notebook, watch, dashboard & PC.

I do wonder about PACE emulation here. Let's see 68K apps running thru a Cobalt emulator which is built on top of Linux kernal. Whew, somebody better get another truckload of "Zen". We may be runnin' out. :-o



Pat Horne; www.churchoflivingfaith.com

Mike Mace: Damage control?
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 12/8/2004 5:00:04 PM #
Why does PalmSource (PalmSores™?) constantly trot you out to do damage control? I feel embarassed for you.

http://www.palminfocentre.com/comment_view.asp?ID=7258




******************************************************************
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.

RE: Palm OS on Linux
Altema @ 12/8/2004 6:34:08 PM #
"I guess it sounds cool, but didn't PalmOS used to be able to stand on it's own? -and not all that long ago?"

PalmOS can still stand on it's own as far as I'm concerned. It's funny all the comments we run into about "limitations", while in the real world, others wonder how we can do the things we do. Yea, I'm a hardcore user who has gone through at least 12 devices in 4 years including those with Windows Mobile, and we no longer have PPC evangelists looking for confrontation at our workplace of 13,000. However, that is not because I'm any great expert, it's because I have a very capable tool and know how to use it.

This change is not about fixing weaknesses, it's about embracing a growing segment of technonologically astute users, and providing for future expansion.

I'd say more, but I'm in a rush right now...

RE: Palm OS on Linux
mikecane @ 12/8/2004 7:10:40 PM #
>>>I have a very capable tool and know how to use it

Give us who *really* know how to use it a friggin break, you prat.

32K Memos. 1K Clipboard.

Nuff said for those of us who REALLY know.

voice of chaos??? Verrry suspicious. SPIN baby, SPIN!!!!!
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 12/8/2004 9:53:29 PM #
voice of chaos @ 12/8/2004 11:15:16 AM

The last paragraph is the big announcement - they'll put Palm OS on top of China MobileSoft's mLinux. That is good news.

"voice of chaos"??? W T F???

So you joined PIC yesterday and your first post was to hint at the Linux Palm before it was officially announced? Interesting. Conspiracy Theorists are working overtime.

Ryan, this Palm "insider" is hurting my feelings with his user name. Is he just another developer, or is he really an Astroturfer working for Palm, "created" to ask a bunch of nicey-nice questions for Michael Mace to answer + somehow spin this flip flop into a positive? ;-) Palm wouldn't do that, would they?

TVoR



******************************************************************
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.

RE: Palm OS on Linux
Altema @ 12/8/2004 10:50:39 PM #
"Give us who *really* know how to use it a friggin break, you prat.

32K Memos. 1K Clipboard.

Nuff said for those of us who REALLY know."
=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

You use the stock memopad?

Is Palm Astroturfing at PIC?
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 12/8/2004 11:55:07 PM #
so how did Little Miss "voice of chaos" know about PalmSource's plans to port PalmOS to Linux before it was even announced to PalmSource's licencees?

http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=7359#101041

I smell Astroturf.

Looks like Palm is sinking to the kind of manipulation games Microsoft is legendary for. Wow.



******************************************************************
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.

Comment Time Differences
Admin @ 12/9/2004 1:16:48 AM #
Voice, this is because my server clocks are not aligned.

Long story short, the webserver is on PST, the Database is on EST, thus there is a 3 hour difference. I obviously need to fix it.

-Ryan

Guess again, Ryan
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 12/9/2004 2:09:39 AM #
The post from "voice of chaos" was done on Tuesday - the day before PalmSource announced their latest blunder! Ooops!


http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=7359#101041



******************************************************************
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.

RE: Palm OS on Linux
mikecane @ 12/9/2004 9:00:33 AM #
>>>You use the stock memopad?

What exactly is "stock" these days? It's what came with the TE.

If you had a TH55, you'd have the option of Sony's "stock" Memo app (separate from the traditiobal one).

If you have a Zod, you'd have the traditional and pathetic and hair-pulling and near-useless *4K* Memo Pad (hey, STILL with an INADEQUATE Clipboard!!!).

I don't know what they did with Memos for Cobalt. I'm afraid to find out...

PalmLinux
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 12/9/2004 11:14:15 PM #
The post from "voice of chaos" was done on Tuesday - the day before PalmSource announced their latest blunder! Ooops!


http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=7359#101041

A dumba$$ from TapWave. Way to be, G. Wrap your loose lips around Mike Cane's flaccid member.




******************************************************************
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.

That's good news and bad news.

JonAcheson @ 12/8/2004 11:28:00 AM #
The good news is, the Palm OS 6 debacle is nearing an end.

The bad news is, we're waiting for a new Palm OS again.

"All opinions posted are my own, and not those of my employers, who are appalled."

RE: That's good news and bad news.
LiveFaith @ 12/8/2004 3:24:29 PM #
"No waiting" for those not into Linux tho. I personally have no need for it, but I'm also not on the enterprise-cutting-edge either.

Pat Horne; www.churchoflivingfaith.com

Yeesh

mikecane @ 12/8/2004 12:28:43 PM #
This is rather extreme to get Sharp to license PalmOS! Ha!

But really, it's Microsoft that should be worried.

And we PalmOS adherents should be appalled.

No Cobalt. Now this.

Do Nagel, et al, have ADHD?

RE: Yeesh
mikecane @ 12/8/2004 12:33:14 PM #
RE: Yeesh
neuron @ 12/8/2004 12:41:55 PM #
That's for phone. There is no sympian handheld edition. Don't get confused.

RE: Yeesh
mikecane @ 12/8/2004 7:11:43 PM #
You have not been paying attention. Get in the corner and put on that Dunce Cap.

PDAs are dead.

They all think it's now the Smartphone.

Good news

neuron @ 12/8/2004 12:33:17 PM #
I think it is a good news for all Palm users. POS v6 is only a dream for us, we may get one or two POS v6 in the next two years. Considering the current situation of POS v6, I didn't see much high hope from it.

But basing on linux is another problem. PS won't have to tweak the OS core any more since the multiple task and multiple threads are buildin. PS can focus on the improvement of interface, built-in PIM and browser. For accessory support, linux has a great base of hardware drivers. PS is easy to tweak them to fit Palm device. The R&D money of OS upgrade and debugging will be greatly decreased.

Sharp uses Linux all the time. This new POS will also provide more potential for sharp becoming POS licencee. Considering the big success of sharp in Japan handheld market, it will be a great breakthrough for POS oversea market.

For most users, we will see a little bit price decrease. We will also find some kind of hacks will make the linux softwares (for Sharp) can be run in new POS without problems.

RE: Good news
LiveFaith @ 12/8/2004 3:26:50 PM #
The best news for PSRC would be that products able to run Palm OS or Linux could run on one device. Right?

Pat Horne; www.churchoflivingfaith.com

Open Letter to Palm OS community

Michael Mace @ 12/8/2004 1:00:07 PM #
Folks,

We've posted an open letter discussing our announcement and answering some of the common questions. You can find it here:

http://www.palmsource.com/announcement/communityletter.html

Mike
CCO, PalmSource Inc.

RE: Open Letter to Palm OS community
neuron @ 12/8/2004 1:15:00 PM #
Buying CMS is very smart move, much better than buying BeOS, which is proved to be only a waste of money.

RE: Open Letter to Palm OS community
Gekko @ 12/8/2004 1:34:43 PM #

Mike - Don't take anything posted here personally. It's business, not personal.

GG



RE: Open Letter to Palm OS community
voice of chaos @ 12/8/2004 1:37:38 PM #
Michael,

Everything there is great, but let's look at this from both the short term and the long term for the software developer.

From the short term, at this point there are no Cobalt devices shipping. Even before a single device has shipped you announce a new OS platform. Since it will support PACE, that is the API set that I can guarantee maximum portibility, ergo for at least the short term PACE is my only real alternative.

In the long term the OS set that you provide will be decided by the marketplace. Maybe Cobalt will be more successful, maybe the Linux-based Palm OS will win. Maybe they will win in different segments. In either case, if I want to really take advantage of what the platform has to offer, I will focus on what is selling.

The move to Linux was smart. I like it a lot. You've just got to make me understand why I would want to move to Cobalt - right now I'm glad I haven't spent a lot of time learning the Cobalt API's.

RE: Open Letter to Palm OS community
Gekko @ 12/8/2004 1:42:11 PM #

And before someone else says it, yes, MSFT pays me a penny a post - and I've almost made a nickel today!


RE: Open Letter to Palm OS community
Gekko @ 12/8/2004 1:48:53 PM #

>"Buying CMS is very smart move, much better than buying BeOS, which is proved to be only a waste of money."

Don't tell that to "Jumpin'" Jean Louis Gassee - the guy who sold them BeOS for millions and who is now the same guy who is now the CHAIRMAN of PSRC!!! What's wrong with that picture?

Benhamou sure knows how to cut deals!



RE: Open Letter to Palm OS community
Michael Mace @ 12/8/2004 1:50:29 PM #
Gekko wrote:

>Mike - Don't take anything posted here personally. It's business, not personal.

Don't worry, I don't pay much attention to anonymous posts.

How're those Geico commercials going, by the way?


VoC wrote:

>>The move to Linux was smart. I like it a lot. You've just got to make me understand why I would want to move to Cobalt - right now I'm glad I haven't spent a lot of time learning the Cobalt API's.

I think you're asking the right question. Quoting from the engineers now, our intent is to move the Cobalt frameworks to Palm OS for Linux. So a Cobalt application using the "Protein" APIs should be portable to Palm OS for Linux with a simple recompile.

I know "simple" is a loaded term, so I checked with engineering to make sure they really meant that. They said yes.

So, I think you're safe to learn the Protein APIs. That'll make your work compatible with Palm OS Cobalt, and your effort should also transfer to Palm OS for Linux. That's our intent, anyway.

Mike
CCO, PalmSource

Mike Mace: a little honesty, please.
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 12/8/2004 4:50:25 PM #
http://www.palminfocentre.com/comment_view.asp?ID=7258 (Scroll throgh the flames to the posts by "hackbod".)


-------------------------------------------------------------------
Disappointed Palm User:
"For PalmOS 6, I had expected that Palm would have been brave enough to think UNIX flavor + pretty GUI + PACE clone (the "emulator" I naively envisioned being folded into the Clean Sheet™ OS) running on modern 400MHz processors. Give 30 experienced engineers 1 year to bind all these elements together. I think it could have (and should have) been done."


PalmSource Dominatrix:
Easy claims, for someone who is essentially posting anonymously. Tell me, what is your engineering background to be able to make such a statement? Have you thought about these things:

* What the heck do you mean by "UNIX flavor"? Do you know what that is? (Bonus question: do you know what it is about the ARM architecture that makes it very difficult to efficiently implement the traditional Unix process model?) Are you talking about licensing an existing kernel like Linux or FreeBSD? Sure, licensing this stuff makes sense... which is why we licensed STREAMS for our IO subsystem. The kernel itself is a very small part -- we actually have only a few engineers working on ours, not much more than what would be needed to do customization and integration if we had licensed it. Oh and think about this: Be already had a fully functional Unix-like protected memory kernel, one that had been in production use for many years. Cobalt did not ship with the BeOS kernel. Are you saying the Be engineers are so stupid that they just kind-of forgot they had this thing?

* What is this pretty UI? Are you talking about running X Windows? Maybe embedded KDE? What are the trade-offs of these? If you aren't talking about licensing something, how is this any different than what we did for Cobalt?

* PACE clone. Cobalt -has- PACE. That is what runs all of the existing applications. The main difference I can imagine between what is there and what you are thinking is that in Cobalt PACE (for the most part) doesn't take care of translating the old system calls into what is needed in the new system architecture. Instead, we implemented that part of the compatibility layer outside of PACE so that (a) ARM native applications could also use them (to ease porting of existing applications to ARM); and (b) for the initial release we could re-use and grow the existing APIs instead of introducing a completely new application framework. This decision was a significant measure in cutting down on the time to market: by making the traditional APIs available in ARM it was much easier for us to port all of our own existing apps, and we could avoid a -ton- of work in designing, documenting, and testing a full set of new APIs.

Enough of the spin. Enough of the games. Get your house in order and let us know when you know when you finally figure out what you're doing (assuming that ever happens).





******************************************************************
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.

RE: Open Letter to Palm OS community
mikecane @ 12/8/2004 7:13:59 PM #
>>>I know "simple" is a loaded term, so I checked with engineering to make sure they really meant that. They said yes.

OK, now even *I* am disgusted by this.

We were told the same damned thing about COBALT -- the OS Missing In Action. In fact, PS's PR trotted out a dev who adapted his app to Cobalt in about a "half hour." (Those quotes are QUOTES.)

Now we have some Linux nerd who says, Oh, I'll just type 'make' and boom! PalmOS on Linux.

WTF?!

Look, you guys just put out that damned installer app that's been wreaking HAVOC on my TE. I wake up yesterday to discover -- ONLY BY USING FILEZ -- that the damned Aggression demo (WHICH DIDN'T WORK!!! it went into some lunatic loop that eventually forced a HARD RESET!) was put on my SD and named with a HYPHEN in front of it (and maybe even a space or other hidden character) so it wasn't easy to find on my SD. That effer was eating nearly a MEG of my SD space WITHOUT MY KNOWLEDGE. THIS is the new "simple" for PS?

I've investigated the Linuxed Sharp Zaurus. You practically need a goddammed engineering degree to load apps onto that thing. And even the Linux cultists couldn't tell me HTF to get FONTS onto it to use with the Hancom WP app!

We've already had hackbod here (I like her; so shut up, youse guys!) defending the telecom-dictated security measures that made Cobalt much more "closed" that PalmOS has traditionmally been. And now you expect these same telcoms to go for LINUX?! Something so OPEN? And not just Linux, but CHINESE Linux?

Your credibility as a spokesman is shot with me. PalmSource looks like it doesn't know what the eff it is doing (well, the execs sucking at its malnourished teats know what *they* have been doing!). Not one device with Cobalt yet. Eleven unnamed ones set to announce next year -- allegedly (and, yes, not ALL of them will be doing Cobalt -- and that could mean as few as ONE allegedly will!). Hey, if I was one of those licensees, I'd be screaming into Nagel's ear about this. And I'd *dump* all current development and write it off as R&D that didn't pan out. Maybe their local government will reward them tax-wise for the wasted effort.

Yes, I know you guys inherited a legacy of Benhamou, et al, foot-dragging. But, damn, these were *Be* people! HTF could you have so much talent and yet have so LITTLE to show for it?

I'm disgusted.

The winner for quote of the year: Mr. Mike Cane!!!
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 12/8/2004 10:54:35 PM #
"Your credibility as a spokesman is shot with me. PalmSource looks like it doesn't know what the eff it is doing (well, the execs sucking at its malnourished teats know what *they* have been doing!).


Congratulations, Mike. Where would you like your prize (a used Tungsten E) mailed to?

It amazes me that Michael Mace is brazen enough to show up on Palminfocenter with his dog and pony show. Many will find his attempts at spin doctoring to be an insult to the intelligence of the Palm enthusiasts who look to PIC as the place for HONEST information regarding the PalmOS world.

I'd be shocked to see that the market buys PalmSource's spin. PalmSource just reached a 52 week low price today and is still falling. Realistically, it will likely drop below $10 within a few days.

Desperate moves from a desperate company. Palm has basically just written off the Be acquisition, Cobalt and the past three years of development, all in one fell swoop. And does PalmSource think the market will keep waiting for them forever? Brilliant.

Just wait until you see what's in the PalmSource's SEC filing on December 22!



******************************************************************
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.

RE: Open Letter to Palm OS community
mikecane @ 12/9/2004 9:06:56 AM #
Mace's silence is thundering.

Yet speaks volumes.

RE: Open Letter to Palm OS community
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 12/9/2004 4:45:09 PM #
He won't reply to any questions here because he knows the marketing-speak BS won't fly. Anyone with any significant degree of familiarity with PalmOS and Palm's history can see through the BS, lies and "optimistic" statements.

Plus, he's too probably busy "sucking at [Palm's] malnourished teats" to care!


******************************************************************
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.

RE: Open Letter to Palm OS community
hackbod @ 12/10/2004 3:35:59 AM #
Addressing this suggestion for how Cobalt "should" have been done using Linux and my reply about the numerous problems it was glossing over:

"For PalmOS 6, I had expected that Palm would have been brave enough to think UNIX flavor + pretty GUI + PACE clone (the "emulator" I naively envisioned being folded into the Clean Sheet™ OS) running on modern 400MHz processors. Give 30 experienced engineers 1 year to bind all these elements together. I think it could have (and should have) been done."

Everything I said still stands. The key point is: THE KERNEL IS ONE FAIRLY SMALL PART OF AN OVERALL PLATFORM. Whether we had initially selected the BeOS kernel, Mach (as one Be engineer was advocating) or the kernel in Cobalt now that Palm had started working on before Be was acquired, this would have had little impact on how long it took to finish Cobalt. (For what it's worth, if this choice did have any impact, I think the kernel with the quickest time-to-market would have been the BeOS one, since it was already a working production kernel and we just happened to have a few engineers with a lot of experience with it.)

For some perspective: for the 2 years that basically the entire engineering team was working on Cobalt, maybe 1/8 of those engineers were working on kernel-level stuff that wouldn't have been done by us if we had used Linux instead of building our own kernel. And it wouldn't have even helped that much, because we still would have needed kernel engineers to work on the Linux kernel to tweak it and add features needed by the rest of our platform.

The OS described above is, in fact, little more than what we have today on Palm OS Garnet, except running on top of Linux instead of the in-house kernel it currently uses. But you basically couldn't use anything in Linux, because none of the rest of the Garnet platform knows how to do anything with multiple threads, protected memory, multiple processes, or anything else like that. About the only advantage you would get with it is you might be able to write Palm OS applications directly in native ARM code.

"Palm has basically just written off the Be acquisition, Cobalt and the past three years of development, all in one fell swoop."

This is absolutely not true. While we don't know many of the details right now about how all of this will work out, it seems likely that nearly (if not all) of the Be technology that is currently in Cobalt will carry over to the Linux flavor. This gets back to the fact that the overall platform is much more than the kernel, and the kernel we ended up using in Cobalt was not from BeOS. (As an example: did you know that during its lifetime so far Palm OS has gone through three different kernels, and this is merely a fourth?)

Nobody is trying to pull something over on you. Read right from the announcement: "bringing the benefits of Palm OS to the Linux community, including ... software frameworks based on the best of Palm OS and BeOS". This is all that stuff on top of the kernel that, to the developer and the user, largely makes Palm OS what it is. It is the Data Manager, event queues, windows, forms, notifications, attention manager, sync, and a ton of other things. What this announcement means is that we are basically bringing all of these Palm OS things (along with the significant new infrastructure we have in Cobalt) over to Linux, very much the same way that MacOS X uses Mach/FreeBSD for its kernel.

This announcement also doesn't change the fact that Cobalt -does- exist, licensees -are- working with it, and they can ship devices using it -today-. The work on Linux is a longer-term plan, which can be done partly because we have the Cobalt platform today that we can ship. And as has been stated, this switch will be largely transparent to users and developers: they will see the same user experience, the same Protein APIs, etc. In fact it should be much more transparent than the switch to Cobalt, since here we are only changing the underlying kernel rather than all of the system architecture on top of it.


--
Dianne
PalmSource Application Frameworks Manager

RE: Open Letter to Palm OS community
hackbod @ 12/10/2004 4:12:26 AM #
"We were told the same damned thing about COBALT -- the OS Missing In Action. In fact, PS's PR trotted out a dev who adapted his app to Cobalt in about a "half hour." (Those quotes are QUOTES.)"

"Now we have some Linux nerd who says, Oh, I'll just type 'make' and boom! PalmOS on Linux."

I think part of the problem here is that there is a lot of misunderstanding over what a kernel is. This confusion isn't helped by the fact that, though Linux is a kernel, mostly people use the name "Linux" to describe an entire platform.

Here is basically what a kernel (including Linux) does: manage processes, manage threads, load and start executables, provide shared libraries, allow you to do IO (with persistent storage and networks), and allow you to send basic commands to hardware such as "send a byte on a serial port".

That's basically it. Note that Linux doesn't even give you the famous shell. That is why you have so many to choose from (bash, csh, zsh, etc., etc): they are all built on top of these primitive services that the kernel provides.

So when people use the word "Linux" what they are usually referring to is the Linux kernel plus a huge amount of other stuff. This is what Linux distributions do, take the basic Linux kernel, and then put together with all of the other pieces (shells, servers, X-Windows, KDE, etc., etc) needed to make the kind of full platform you expect.

Now when we say we are going to make Palm OS run on top of Linux, we are talking about the -real- Linux, the kernel. On top of the kernel, instead of a lot of the pieces you get in a normal desktop distribution (X-Windows, KDE, file browser), we will be placing the current Palm OS platform components basically as they exist in Cobalt.

Now it just so happens that a large amount of the effort we invested in developing Cobalt was to redesign the entire Palm OS architecture so that it would work with and make use of a modern OS kernel with multi-threading, protected memory, etc. One not completely unlike Linux (though not nearly as similar to Linux as the BeOS kernel was, but that's another story).

What this means is that we expect the new Protein SDK we designed for Cobalt to basically work as-is on Linux. There is quite a bit of effort we will need to do inside the system to do the port, but with Cobalt we have already addressed the vast majority of the issues that anyone outside of PalmSource would see: how we make these APIs work in a protected memory system, how we expose multi-threading and multiple processes in them, etc. That is why applications developed for the current Protein APIs will compile as-is on this future Palm OS on Linux.

"I've investigated the Linuxed Sharp Zaurus. You practically need a goddammed engineering degree to load apps onto that thing. And even the Linux cultists couldn't tell me HTF to get FONTS onto it to use with the Hancom WP app!"

You absolutely positively don't need to worry about this, because what we are talking about here is the Linux kernel. We will be providing all of the higher-level services, the same ones you know and love today. To an end user the final platform will work, look, and feel basically exactly the same as it does on our existing kernel.

"We've already had hackbod here (I like her; so shut up, youse guys!) defending the telecom-dictated security measures that made Cobalt much more "closed" that PalmOS has traditionmally been. And now you expect these same telcoms to go for LINUX?! Something so OPEN? And not just Linux, but CHINESE Linux?"

If we were to take the linux kernel, create a process, and let you run whatever code you wanted in there, we could make it so your code could do absolutely nothing. (Unless there are bugs in the kernel that allow you to get around its security, which the Linux community would be aghast at and quickly fix since they like to tout their security compared to Windows.)

The fundamental feature that allows the system to enforce this kind of security is protected memory, which both our kernel and Linux has.

When talking about these things, it is important to be careful about over-loaded terms like "open". In Linux, what "open" means is that anyone has access to the source code and can modify what it does. This does NOT mean you will be able to have any arbitrary access to a particular system running Linux, if that system doesn't let you. Sure, you will be able to get the source code for the kernel in that system, but the only advantage at all that gives you in avoiding security is that you might be able to find a bug in the kernel code to take advantage of.

"Not one device with Cobalt yet. Eleven unnamed ones set to announce next year -- allegedly (and, yes, not ALL of them will be doing Cobalt -- and that could mean as few as ONE allegedly will!)."

Do you mean some of these may be running the Linux version of Cobalt? If so, given the time it takes for a device to get to market and the fact that this acquisition hasn't yet completed, I think it is fairly unlikely you'd see Linux-based devices next year.

"But, damn, these were *Be* people! HTF could you have so much talent and yet have so LITTLE to show for it?"

Wow, strange to see a nice comment about Be engineers. Thanks. :)

For what it's worth, I consider the current Cobalt product to be a tremendous engineering achievement, which everyone at PalmSource has reason to be proud of. I can't wait to buy a device that is running it!!! And the vast majority of that work will carry over to PalmOS for Linux... just like much of the work we were doing at Be carried over from BeOS to the Cobalt kernel (with a brief stop in Windows Land).


--
Dianne
PalmSource Application Frameworks Manager

RE: Open Letter to Palm OS community
CADJedi @ 12/10/2004 10:27:28 AM #
Diane (aka Hackbod),

Thank you for posting here. Your explanation regarding the Linux kernal was VERY helpful and really helped me to understand whats going on. The idea of PalmOS as a "skin" wasn't very appealing but now I understand more about what a "kernal" actually is and that the in the end result should be invisable to the end user like me.

I think Palmsource should do more communication like this to their end customers so that we know whats going on... without a little feedback its easy to feel that the PalmOS isn't going anywhere and feel like you better start making plans to move to some other PDA.

Thanks again for posting on PIC... please encourage your colleagues at PS to drop in too. Even though we have a handful of trolls here, I think most readers really appreciate when people from PS contribute.

PS: Now Palmsource needs to put some pressure on their hardware developers so we can actually SEE and USE OS6!


History repeats: Be, Apple, Palm
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 12/12/2004 1:27:40 AM #
Addressing this suggestion for how Cobalt "should" have been done using Linux and my reply about the numerous problems it was glossing over:

"For PalmOS 6, I had expected that Palm would have been brave enough to think UNIX flavor + pretty GUI + PACE clone (the "emulator" I naively envisioned being folded into the Clean Sheet™ OS) running on modern 400MHz processors. Give 30 experienced engineers 1 year to bind all these elements together. I think it could have (and should have) been done."

Everything I said still stands. The key point is: THE KERNEL IS ONE FAIRLY SMALL PART OF AN OVERALL PLATFORM. Whether we had initially selected the BeOS kernel, Mach (as one Be engineer was advocating) or the kernel in Cobalt now that Palm had started working on before Be was acquired, this would have had little impact on how long it took to finish Cobalt. (For what it's worth, if this choice did have any impact, I think the kernel with the quickest time-to-market would have been the BeOS one, since it was already a working production kernel and we just happened to have a few engineers with a lot of experience with it.)

For some perspective: for the 2 years that basically the entire engineering team was working on Cobalt, maybe 1/8 of those engineers were working on kernel-level stuff that wouldn't have been done by us if we had used Linux instead of building our own kernel. And it wouldn't have even helped that much, because we still would have needed kernel engineers to work on the Linux kernel to tweak it and add features needed by the rest of our platform.

The OS described above is, in fact, little more than what we have today on Palm OS Garnet, except running on top of Linux instead of the in-house kernel it currently uses. But you basically couldn't use anything in Linux, because none of the rest of the Garnet platform knows how to do anything with multiple threads, protected memory, multiple processes, or anything else like that. About the only advantage you would get with it is you might be able to write Palm OS applications directly in native ARM code.

Nice try, DK. Your post doesn't make any sense. It's pretty obvious that the "Unix flavor" listed as part of what I said should have comprised PalmOS 6 includes a Unix-type kernel. Otherwise, what would be the advantage over using PalmOS 5? Think about it.

"Palm has basically just written off the Be acquisition, Cobalt and the past three years of development, all in one fell swoop."

This is absolutely not true. While we don't know many of the details right now about how all of this will work out, it seems likely that nearly (if not all) of the Be technology that is currently in Cobalt will carry over to the Linux flavor. This gets back to the fact that the overall platform is much more than the kernel, and the kernel we ended up using in Cobalt was not from BeOS. (As an example: did you know that during its lifetime so far Palm OS has gone through three different kernels, and this is merely a fourth?)

Nobody is trying to pull something over on you. Read right from the announcement: "bringing the benefits of Palm OS to the Linux community, including ... software frameworks based on the best of Palm OS and BeOS". This is all that stuff on top of the kernel that, to the developer and the user, largely makes Palm OS what it is. It is the Data Manager, event queues, windows, forms, notifications, attention manager, sync, and a ton of other things. What this announcement means is that we are basically bringing all of these Palm OS things (along with the significant new infrastructure we have in Cobalt) over to Linux, very much the same way that MacOS X uses Mach/FreeBSD for its kernel.

This announcement also doesn't change the fact that Cobalt -does- exist, licensees -are- working with it, and they can ship devices using it -today-. The work on Linux is a longer-term plan, which can be done partly because we have the Cobalt platform today that we can ship. And as has been stated, this switch will be largely transparent to users and developers: they will see the same user experience, the same Protein APIs, etc. In fact it should be much more transparent than the switch to Cobalt, since here we are only changing the underlying kernel rather than all of the system architecture on top of it.


--
Dianne
PalmSource Application Frameworks Manager

Again, nice try. PalmOS 6 (Cobalt) has been given the hook. Licencees gave it a resounding "No thanks" (is it true TapWave actually laughed in your face?); it was a year late; and it's STILL awaiting several features to be added, including some mandatory for use as a smartphone OS. PalmSource is attempting to salvage whatever it can from the past three years, ergo the Linux-based Plan B (9?) from Outer Mongolia. Good luck trying to see how much of your Cobalt-related code can be recycled. "Reduce/Reuse/Recycle code" - that will be PalmSource's offical mantra for PalmLinux. Should make for a really Green OS.

Bottom line is that PalmSource screwed up and is desperately attempting to salvage whatever it can from its investments. You actually STILL might have had a chance to succeed it only you had a bit more time. Unfortunately, the rest of the market isn't standing still and PalmSource is going to get squashed by the big boys. As someone that worked for Be, this scenario should be eerily familiar to you. Maybe it's time to start looking for another eVilla to licence PalmOS 6 to.

TVoR




******************************************************************
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.

Gah

MrBond @ 12/8/2004 1:15:04 PM #
Q. Does Palm OS for Linux replace current versions of Palm OS®?
A. This is an addition to our line, not a replacement. Other versions of Palm OS continue to be available. As always, we'll make decisions on their future growth path based on feedback from our licensees and other partners.

Q. What sort of technologies does Linux help you with?
A. Two areas that stand out immediately are chipset support, and device drivers (for features like WiFi and Bluetooth). There's abundant support in the Linux community for various chipsets, and drivers are generally available for a wide variety of devices. Creating these for a proprietary operating system base is time-consuming and expensive, and working with Linux will enable our licensees and hardware developers to quickly bring their products to market.

http://www.mozilla.org

Obfuscation through Acquisition

Gekko @ 12/8/2004 1:22:02 PM #

The Keystone Kops need moves like this to continue to obfuscate their declining market share and declining financial health to Wall Street and the Palm community. When you have no real good news to tell, you must artificially try to create it. It's all part of a smokescreen, man, to help them milk this thing for a few more years until there's nothing left. The Kops will try to ride the "Linux" bandwagon story to buy them a few more points with a few dumb analysts which they hope will get them a few more points on the stock price for a few months longer so options can vest and a few more paychecks can get milked. Look for the Linux logo to be branded everywhere all over PalmSource.

"If you can't dazzle them with diamonds, baffle them with bullshiit."



RE: Obfuscation through Acquisition
LiveFaith @ 12/8/2004 3:31:29 PM #
Gekko, I hope M$FT paid you at least a nickle for that hysteria. You're startin' to sound like Baghdad Bob now.

Pat Horne; www.churchoflivingfaith.com
RE: Obfuscation through Acquisition
Gekko @ 12/8/2004 3:49:50 PM #

Hysteria? How quickly you forget. Stranger things have happened in big business. Remember a couple of Fortune 500 companies called WorldCom and Enron? Remember all the promised AOL/Time Warner merger "SYNERGIES" story? Remember the BUBBLE and the analysts and companies who pumped it up???

Pass the donation plate, Reverend.


RE: Obfuscation through Acquisition
mikecane @ 12/8/2004 7:26:23 PM #
Leave Gekko alone on this one. He's on -- he'll like this expression! -- the money here.

RE: Obfuscation through Acquisition
hkklife @ 12/9/2004 1:29:25 AM #
Smartphones=the bandwagon du jour in '04 (according to PS & P1)

Linux=the bandwagon du jour in '05 (according to PS at least)

What do multiple bandwagons end up becoming? A convoy of wagons.

What do wagon convoys do when the going gets rough? Circle them tighter and tighter and tighter until the inevitable doom occurs...

Again, friends, I'm going out on a limb here and predicting IBM will have SOMETHING to do, hardware, software, or otherwise, with whatever house of cards Linux/Palm OS amalgamation ends up being cranked out in the next year or so. Anyone remember the PR hot air IBM was generating two or three years ago ("we invested $1 billion+ in Linux because it's the wave of the future" etc)?

Now that Acer's safely out of the picture, P1 can start to worry about Lenovo cranking up handheld production.

RE: Obfuscation through Acquisition
mikecane @ 12/9/2004 9:09:00 AM #
OK, so who is going to gobble up this (snicker!) new "OS powerhouse"?

It sounds about right that IBM would do it -- although given their pathethic flogging of the Sharp Zaurus to pinstripers here in the US, I doubt it. Although the frustrated exec who still might be there probably wants Gekko-like Vindication and will do whatever he can to convince them that Now Is The Time To Buy (well, actually, it's not; wait for PS stock to hit $4).

RE: Obfuscation through Acquisition
hkklife @ 12/9/2004 11:02:17 AM #
Yup, Mike, that's what I was thinking all along--for at least 3 years or so (since the demise of the rebranded WorkPad line) I've been saying IBM is a likely player to come out of nowhere and make a big powerplay in the POS world. Althought I used to think it was going to be primarily hardware-oriented, after the events of the past week I've had to change those thoughts a bit.

Nevertheless, IBM can go to the pinstripers and say "here's your PDA running Palmlux (my vote for the new Tower of Babel POS/Linux hybrid), here's your smartphones running the same thing, here's your thin client, here's your Windows desktop that still has our name on it if you still care for such things, here's the drastically chapened Thinkpads still with our name on it, here are your servers, mainframes etc etc etc. Now here are our software & service offerings"
It all makes such perfect sense.

I hope this helps

plazman30 @ 12/8/2004 1:46:18 PM #
PalmSource spent a LOT of time and money making Cobalt, and NO ONE wants to make a PDA based on it. The developers I talked to, told me they were all in a holding pattern for updating their apps as they want all new code to run on Cobalt, and Cobalt was touted as the future for Palm (before the split) and now PalmOne has no interest in Cobalt. What sucks is that no developers have any interest in the extra PIM fields in PalmOne devices, because they want to support the extra fields in Cobalt. PalmOne makes the situation even more annoying because, DIFFERENT DEVICES HAVE DIFFERENT FIELDS!!!

PalmOne needs to offer an OS update to allow all currently selling models (and maybe one rev back also) to all have the SAME FIELDS.

As much as I love Palm, I do have to say that a PocketPC device, no matter from which vendor will always have the same fields in the core PIMs.

Andy


RE: I hope this helps
rsc1000 @ 12/8/2004 4:51:37 PM #
>>The developers I talked to, told me they were all in a holding pattern for updating their apps as they want all new code to run on Cobalt, and Cobalt was touted as the future for Palm (before the split) and now PalmOne has no interest in Cobalt.

This linux version will use the EXACT same APIs as Cobolt. Its mainly the kernal and some services that are linux. What does that mean? It smeans the code will run fine (just change the compile settings in PODS) on this. The dont need to learn any new APIs. The code for Cobolt is really the Protein APIs - and this is exactly the same whether is is OS 6 Cobolt or OS 6 Linux. ......at least thats the theory;)


NetBSD would have worked, too.

ehanneken @ 12/8/2004 1:37:07 PM #
I'm a little sad that PalmSource chose Linux over NetBSD. That's mainly because I like NetBSD better, but PalmSource would have found the BSD license less onerous than the GPL. To avoid open sourcing their own code, PalmSource is going to have to distribute the PalmOS layer separately from Linux. PalmOS on NetBSD could have been distributed as one package.

Having said that, I understand why PalmSource decided to use Linux: More dollars and programmers are committed to it than to NetBSD. Whichever Unix PalmSource chose, it makes sense for them to outsource OS development and focus on the software layer that makes them money. That strategy seems to have worked out for Apple.

RE: NetBSD would have worked, too.
JonAcheson @ 12/8/2004 6:48:24 PM #
Considering that they will distribute their code loaded onto a Palm device, I don't think there will be a problem.


"All opinions posted are my own, and not those of my employers, who are appalled."

Beef up the Partner Program PSource!

pkuhns @ 12/8/2004 1:50:17 PM #
What I see is tons of announcements from lemming-like electronics companies introducing new Win-CE, PPC, and Win Mobile devices. They're non-stop!

I do NOT see the cavalcade of PR folks announcing new Palm devices like we used to see in 2003. What happened?

Whatever PalmSource can do to source Palm to these companies they should do. This move seems smart (getting into Asia with Linux - a win/win).

I personally do not want to be part of a sinking ship and I'm not even a programmer! I love my Palm PDAs and can't wait to own/show-off the Treo 650. I'm almost convinced the POS has a healthy life expectancy...

Nokia 3650 bluetooth magnate

RE: Beef up the Partner Program PSource!
mikecane @ 12/8/2004 7:27:20 PM #
I'm sure part of the cavalcade of hardware manufacturers rushing to trot out WinMobOS devices is due to MS's muscle. I wouldn't be surprised if years from now -- probably in an EU court -- it comes to light that MS engaged in unethical (and probably illegal) practices to stifle competition from PalmSource. I'd bet money on this.

That said, let's remember that JVC never put out their PPC and that ViewSonic dumped theirs.

RE: Beef up the Partner Program PSource!
Gekko @ 12/8/2004 7:59:34 PM #

Stop blaming MSFT for Palm's blatant incompetence! Palm's repetition of self-inflicted wounds are painfully obvious.

"Never interrupt your enemy when he is making a mistake." - Napoleon Bonaparte



RE: Beef up the Partner Program PSource!
mikecane @ 12/9/2004 9:12:53 AM #
Well, of course you have a point there. But really, don't you think Big Mouth Ballmer hasn't put his overbearing hand in negotiations?

I am optimistic...

feranick @ 12/8/2004 2:23:51 PM #
...or at least I want to be. One of the advantages of the Linux kernel is that you can run software designed for that platform. For example Minimo, the smart-phone from the Mozilla foundation requires Linux. I would love to run it in my Palm. This is just one example. My only question is about the Palm APIs. Are Linux applications required to use the Palm APIs, or can they use embedded version of Linux APIs?

Nick

RE: I am optimistic...
ehanneken @ 12/8/2004 2:34:50 PM #
> Are Linux applications required to use the Palm APIs, or can
> they use embedded version of Linux APIs?

According to PalmSource (http://tinyurl.com/5jc73), "Palm OS for Linux will be able to run many third party Linux applications and services (GUI applications will need to use the Palm OS APIs)."

Later in the same letter is this question and answer:

"Q. Will you enable developers to port or write "native" Linux applications that run under Palm OS for Linux?

"A. Yes. Given the open source nature of Linux, developers will be able to write applications directly to the Linux core. There are many development tools for the Linux community that will address the needs of this audience very well."

RE: I am optimistic...
mikecane @ 12/8/2004 7:30:09 PM #
Yeah, right. Such openness fits right in with the We Must Control It All mentality of telcos. And all fish have feet.

Good or Bad?

Pfigger @ 12/8/2004 2:57:22 PM #
I think it's a smart move from PalmSource, at least stratgically and economically.
But "PalmOS on Linux" sounds odd: An operating system running on top of another OS? Somwhow reminds me of the old days, when the Windows "OS" (3.something) was running on top of DOS...
Maybe there are better examples of the OS on another OS thing...
RE: Good or Bad?
Michael Mace @ 12/8/2004 3:09:37 PM #
Pfigger wrote:

>"PalmOS on Linux" sounds odd: An operating system running on top of another OS?

Yeah, I know. Every other term we played with sounded odd as well, or had other issues. Since our product is known as Palm OS, we wanted to keep continuity with that. But we also wanted to acknowledge the presence of Linux. "Palm OS for Linux" isn't the final official name, it's just a working description of what we're doing.

Mike
CCO, PalmSource

RE: Good or Bad?
Strider_mt2k @ 12/8/2004 5:44:00 PM #
Mr. Mace,

I enjoy poking fun at P1/PSRC's foibles quite a bit.

I didn't want to go on doing it without also saying that I appreciate you coming on here to try to inform us.

Whether you are speaking for yourself, OR for who you work for, it takes a lot of guts to come on here and suffer our slings and arrows.
For this, I salute you sir.

I want PalmOS and the hardware running it to be something we can cheer about, and I wish you best of luck in your efforts.

For now, I'm staying with my TH55, but I'll continue to look on with interest and sincere hope.



RE: Good or Bad?
pmjoe @ 12/8/2004 6:23:15 PM #
> Maybe there are better examples of the OS on another OS thing...

Yes, it's called Palm OS 1.0 through at least 4.x (not sure about 5.x, but I assumed they did their own for the new hardware). They all ran on top of a Kadak kernel.
http://www.kadak.com/

Everything you see in Mac OS X runs on top of a BSD variant called OpenDarwin.
http://www.opendarwin.org/

RE: Good or Bad?
mikecane @ 12/8/2004 7:35:41 PM #
Bloody hell. I'll name the damned thing for you, since your frigging company can't seem to do ONE goddammed thing right these days. PalmOS/Linux. Pronounced PalmOSslashLinux.

PalmOS Ebola™
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 12/9/2004 1:13:09 AM #
It's Palm's killer new OS.



******************************************************************
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.

RE: Good or Bad?
mikecane @ 12/9/2004 9:15:18 AM #
I've had some sleep.

Here's the name: PalmNix.

As in: Just nix this friggin thing!

RE: Good or Bad?
twrock @ 12/9/2004 7:35:16 PM #
PalmLX

RE: Good or Bad?
Foo Fighter @ 12/10/2004 1:35:53 AM #
> "Here's the name: PalmNix."

I'm coining the name Punix.

-------------------------------
Editor, http://Pocketfactory.com
Contributing Editor, http://digitalmediathoughts.com

Palm Source doing ala Mac OS X?!

Palm Addict @ 12/8/2004 2:03:18 PM #
If Palm is doing like what Apple did for the Mac OS X lately, just do it quickly (without sacrificing quality of course) so I could get my fix asap!

PS had already released Cobalt, and it's up to the licensee to release the hardware. But still no hardware is being released yet.

Maybe that's why PS wants to add Linux in order for the POS to be released sooner on more hardware, and from possibly more new licensee to Palm? Aside from new technological possibilities of course, and to gain more foothold on the mobile OS market share where SYMBIAN is dominant; because that's where the real money is for future licensing of the Palm OS, and because that's where P1 is going also with their hardware (Treo)!

I only hope that this PalmSource gamble would click asap because I'm sure am not happy, like most of us are, regarding the delay of Cobalt (on hardware) and its promised features.

One more thing though, unlike Apple which makes the hardware and OS (still!), Palm (hardware and OS) isn't nowadays, how do you think it would matter to the finished product that the two separate Palm companies would make and contribute to the Palm platform (as compared to what Apple had done to the Mac OS X in comparison)?

Anyway, my few cents of course regarding the matter!



m505 > Visor Prism > Visor Prism + Visor Phone + EyeModule + FlashPlus > Treo 600 ( this holiday season! )

Open Source != more devices.

WareW01f @ 12/8/2004 3:19:25 PM #
I'm both a Linux guy and a Palm guy (in fact I started coding for the Palm on GCC/Slackware) I think this is a great step for PalmSource. The only issue here is that with the BeOS buy, PalmSource seems to also pick up the BeOS curse. i.e. great software, but nowwhere to run it! I looked at Cobalt and dug the blue flashing ice cubes at PalmSource, but 10 months later and I still can't own a device that runs it! The barrier here that I see is the hardware, not the software. I've wanted to run Linux on my Tungsten T since right after I got burned for being an early adopter and then told that there was to be no ROM update. PalmSource needs to do more than just release a simulator/emulator. They need to FIND A VENDOR! I don't care if it's some little unknow n Korean companies device, just give me something to code for! I right for Palm because I can carry it in my pocket. I started writing for Palm because they beat everyone else. With the current course, I don't see why I shouldn't just go buy a Zarus, port the existing open source emulator and be done with it! Don't die the same death that BeOS did. Focus on the platform first, then worry about the next ten releases. Until there is someone to buy my software, why write it?

RE: Open Source != more devices.
Gekko @ 12/8/2004 4:02:15 PM #

Exactly. Without a device to run on, it's all fun and games. They can't even get a COBALT device to market over a year later. PSRC's job is to get/convince hardware partners to get it done - and they have so far failed.

RE: Open Source != more devices.
Palm Addict @ 12/8/2004 4:31:33 PM #
That's why I'm not being an early adopter even if I wanted to, because the evolution of the Palm OS and hardware is very slow!

But I like the Palm OS and its hardware (so far, so good!), its evolution is what I'm really worried about!

I wanted to buy the latest hardware technology with my preferred OS but compared to SYMBIAN (Smartphones & other mobile phones) and Windows (multiple mobile OS flavors), why should Palm always follow and not lead, or at least be neck-and-neck with the competition?

With Palm, it really is a good thing to wait if you want to get your moneys worth! But what would it do to benefit the platforms evolution, to PS and its licensees business in the long run if this long-wait continues?

Hope it could be better.



m505 > Visor Prism > Visor Prism + Visor Phone + EyeModule + FlashPlus > Treo 600 ( this holiday season! )

RE: Open Source != more devices.
mikecane @ 12/8/2004 7:37:23 PM #
Open source = more devices?

Then why the hell did Royal NEVER come out with their promised line of Linuxed PDAs? Why did Sharp STOP selling their almost-fantastic Linuxed PDAs in the US? Why haven't a host of other established electronic manufacturers jumped onto Linux for consumer electronics?

Bull.

RE: Open Source != more devices.
tompi @ 12/8/2004 11:15:31 PM #
"Then why the hell did Royal NEVER come out with their promised line of Linuxed PDAs? Why did Sharp STOP selling their almost-fantastic Linuxed PDAs in the US?"

Because they didn't have the application developers, GUI, user community, or brand name. Palm, on the other hand, has all that.
What Palm needs is device support, and Linux can deliver that because phone makers and device makers have it already ported and have lots of drivers for it.

RE: Open Source != more devices.
tfftruoa @ 12/8/2004 11:55:48 PM #
I believe a large number of the "portable video players" run a variant of embedded Linux (I know the iRiver one does and I think the Archos might as well). There's a processor core with embedded linux (gumb stick or flex stick or something like that) which can be used in all kinds of things. My tivo runs linux. I have a version of desktop linux on a usb thumb drive. Sharp is still selling Linux pdas in the US and developing new ones in Japan. Motorola has realesed a few phones recently with Linux/java. NTT DoCoMo recently standerdised its phone's OSes to symbian and Linux.

Linux is alive and well in the mobile space and adopting a growing platform with ties to an established desktop and server platform will only strengthen PalmSources position in the same way that Windows Mobiles connection to Windows strengthens its little sibling.

I look foreward to seeing the first palm for linux devices or ports of the operating system onto existing devices.

Sharp Wizard-->Handspring Visor "Deluxe"-->Sony Clie SJ30-->Palm Tungsten T3 w/ SE T68i

RE: Open Source != more devices.
mikecane @ 12/9/2004 9:18:02 AM #
Thanks for clarifying who is using Linux. But it still doesn't change things for me. Where's Sony, Matshu****a, Toshiba, et al?

RE: Open Source != more devices.
tompi @ 12/9/2004 12:44:57 PM #
Sony has used Linux on several of their handheld devices. They also offer it for their Playstation. Sony probably went with Palm because of brand name and third party support; on purely technical grounds, they could have easily developed their own handheld platform, probably with less effort than they spent trying to integrate with existing Palm software.

It's been done years ago.

batmon @ 12/8/2004 4:28:32 PM #
Have you guys heard uClinux? I even tried it before and I was able mod my Palm III to run Linux kernel. I was able to make my Palm III as a HTTP and FTP server. A Korea company even use uClinux kernel to build a full Palm OS that look exactly like Palm with all the same apps on it. I think that Korean company might already got shut down by Palm long time ago.

And this was all back in early 90s.

http://www.linux.com/howtos/Wearable-HOWTO-14.shtml
http://www.uclinux.org
http://www.uclinux.com
http://www.oski.co.kr/

RE: It's been done years ago.
rsc1000 @ 12/8/2004 5:07:33 PM #
No it has not been done before. This is not replacing Palm OS with linux. It is a version of Palm OS that runs on the linux kernal. A rather important difference as this will look like, act like Palm OS and will run apps written for Palm OS (old 68k code and new protein apis

RE: It's been done years ago.
batmon @ 12/9/2004 1:12:28 AM #
I thoght that's why those Koreans did... put Palm OS on top of uClinux.... and this is why they have to take that out after Palm found out...

RE: It's been done years ago.
batmon @ 12/9/2004 1:16:59 AM #
says run Palm Apps...

http://www.theregister.co.uk/1999/11/12/korean_developer_ports_linux/
http://www.the-labs.com/PDA/

Maybe they can just use this and release it tomorrow... :-)

This was due a long time ago

XBOT90 @ 12/8/2004 5:34:02 PM #
Why do Linux? Because it is the quickest way to where the money is.

If this is real and not just Vaporware, The 3party developer just gained millions of customers. We all know cell phones have huge retail numbers.

The Palm OS needs to get to many devices quickly or else it is going to die. This OS has supported me since 1998, I hope they pull it off.

Tom Denton
www.dentonsoftware.com

Great news for developers

MarcosV @ 12/8/2004 8:36:02 PM #

I've been developing Palm OS software since '98 and this has got to be the most promising news I've heard in a long time.

Convincing my clients (mostly enterprise) to use the Palm OS for their mobile device platform rather than Windows CE has been getting to be a next to impossible effort.

With Symbol Technologies only having 2 Palm based industrial grade devices running OS 4.1 and grayscale screens; there is almost countless devices for enterprise users that run Windows CE.

The biggest advantage I see for developers with Palm laying the UI on top of Linux is the addition of a REAL file system. Something that is so long over due, it hurts just to think about it.

With one product I did, I actually had to bundle a trial version of SplahPhoto just so I could display a simple jpeg from the SD card. Either do this or write my own image parsing library, which is out of the question.

We're currently updating a data driven product that uses XML files to store information. Instead of copying the xml files to the device for quick and easy reading, I have to write a huge amount of extra code AND a conduit just to place this data in a Palm .pdb format. This is the sort of thing that only happens when your developing for a Palm.

I've been swearing to myself for months that this will be the very last shot at the Palm OS and after this I suppose I'll have to switch to the dark side since the cost to develop for Palm is much too high compared to other options.

Linux on Palm has restored hope once again - though I only hope it's not late as this is long long overdue.

Jim Duffy
Vorpalware


Giving up on the OS thing

stan98 @ 12/8/2004 8:53:49 PM #
"PalmSource Chief Financial Officer Steps Down" appears in a different light now as PS is officially giving up on its mission and leaving the OS business to others. PALM will now be in good company with GNOME, KDE and others.

While this seems a bit like the Mac OS X scenario, there is no Darwin open source effort, no NeXT, no Mac-die-hards and PalmOS until now had no lack of software titles. Also there is the tiny difference that Apple sells computers and PalmSource an OS! Apple's transition was extremely painful. It took several years and we know that 7 handheld-years equal desktop-year ; ) As for the plethora of forth-coming new apps for the platform, less than 1% of Mac users actually use generic UNIX apps.

So, while the market might like this move in the short term, all in all with P1 still contemplating M$, the Palm OS handheld as we know it has officially resigned. Welcome to the future.

they never succeeded with the "OS thing"
tompi @ 12/8/2004 11:32:23 PM #
I don't see what your problem is with this. Palm used to be based on a third party kernel. Then they tried a BeOS port and discovered, gee, that it's a lot of work and that hardware vendors don't like supporting a completely unknown kernel. So, now they are using a different third party kernel, one that is actually stable, mature, well-designed, and that many hardware vendors already know. Nothing changes for you, except that the Palm environment now potentially runs on a lot more hardware.

RE: Giving up on the OS thing
stan98 @ 12/9/2004 12:00:59 AM #
Well, apparently you didn't read the post you're commenting on, but then you are strengthening the argument. For PalmSource - as an OS vendor - to admit to not being able to produce a stable OS ( apparently realizing that that is hard work ; ) ) is pretty bad. What are they gonna do now? Improve further on the anemic built-in apps?
Deja vu, NEO
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 12/9/2004 1:31:11 AM #
For PalmSource - as an OS vendor - to admit to not being able to produce a stable OS ( apparently realizing that that is hard work ; ) ) is pretty bad. What are they gonna do now? Improve further on the anemic built-in apps?

Maybe they'll reassign the Be engineers to making some "really kewl" screensavers and wallpaper for the ARMLinuxed Palms. Even better, maybe they can offer this on Sony's amazing new EVilla™. Got EVilla™? And where's my Samsung Yopy? Biotch!

THREE YEARS of PalmOS 6 devlopment down the tubes. PalmSource's George Hoffman has a lot to answer for right now. This no-confidence vote for Cobalt is probably the kiss of death for the bulk of its developer group, but W T F is Palm thinking? In a little over 3 weeks it will be 2005 and we've seen bupkis from PalmSource. Unless I'm missing something, Palm should have spent the rest of its dwindling resources in trying to salvage COBALT. ASAP.

Given Palm's illustrious history of purchasing overpriced software/ideas and watching development come quickly to a standstill, how will this Great Linux Hope be any different? A money-losing Chinese startup gets bought out by Palm. Set the Time Machine to 2000 and let's go back to anyday.com, boys and girls. Deja vu all over again...





******************************************************************
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.

RE: Giving up on the OS thing
tompi @ 12/9/2004 12:48:10 PM #
"For PalmSource - as an OS vendor - to admit to not being able to produce a stable OS"

Why should a "vendor" be able to produce a stable anything? Vendors sell stuff, they don't produce stuff.

Anyway, PalmSource is an application and library developer and has never been much of anything else. They used to buy their kernel somewhere else, and now they get it for free from Linux. No big deal.

"Improve further on the anemic built-in apps?"

Anemic as they may be, they are the reason people buy Palms, because they still beat the available alternatives.


RE: Giving up on the OS thing
hackbod @ 12/10/2004 5:03:29 AM #
"Then they tried a BeOS port and discovered, gee, that it's a lot of work and that hardware vendors don't like supporting a completely unknown kernel."

I realize TVoR says this so much that it must be true, but it's not. Cobalt does not use the BeOS kernel, it uses one that was developed in-house at Palm. The Be stuff we use in Cobalt are mostly UI and multi-media frameworks. (And even these are not frameworks that were used in BeOS itself, but new ones we were developing at the time of the acquisition and finished at PalmSource.)


--
Dianne
PalmSource Application Frameworks Manager

PalmOS becomes skin for mLinux

VampireLestat @ 12/8/2004 10:40:35 PM #
I just read PalmSource's open letter.

For me, this is the most horrible day in Palm OS history. I consider myself to be one of the biggest Palm OS supporters. This news has ripped my heart out.

Palm OS is about to become a fancy featured skin for mLinux. Since Palm OS will no longer be the core OS, it is essentially dead.

Developers and consumers are now going to move to Windows Mobile because they want stability, standardization and branding.

I am so sorry for the negative comments, but for me and many of my friends who are developers, this looks like the end of the road.

RE: PalmOS becomes skin for mLinux
tompi @ 12/8/2004 11:19:27 PM #
"Developers and consumers are now going to move to Windows Mobile because they want stability, standardization and branding."

Linux has both PalmOS and Windows Mobile beat on stability and standardization. As for branding, that's what Palm provides.

"Palm OS is about to become a fancy featured skin for mLinux. Since Palm OS will no longer be the core OS, it is essentially dead."

Before version 5, PalmOS didn't have its own kernel either; did that bother you? Does it bother you that PalmOS runs on an Intel chip?

Kernels are commodities. Linux gets the job done, and it lets Palm focus its resources on what it does best: a nice set of core applications.

"I am so sorry for the negative comments, but for me and many of my friends who are developers, this looks like the end of the road."

POS5 was the end of the road because POS6 wasn't catching on with hardware vendors the way it was designed. POL (Palm on Linux) makes it much easier and less risky for hardware vendors to ship Palm, and as an application developer nothing changes for you.

I think either you are trolling or you haven't thought this through. Having the APIs you know available on many devices and a mature and stable kernel should make you happy.

RE: MacOSX becomes a skin for BSD!
rayz @ 12/9/2004 1:37:54 AM #
I think the same thing was said, when Apple dumped MacOS9 and built a new system based around the Mach kernel and BSD-Unix.

The kernel is pretty unimportant these days, as long as it's fast, mature, stable and the company using it, has a measure of control over it. You're getting the APIs and the GUI, so tell me, what's the difference?

The real question of course, is whether or not it will work. Personally, I think the company is now on its third shock from the paddles, and is still not showing any real signs of brain activity.

So yes, no matter what the press release says, Cobalt is finished (but can you imagine what would happen if they actually admitted that?! It would be like Apple and Taligent/Copland all over again!), and this is the new plan.

As I said, I'm not convinced, but then it was pretty obvious that Cobalt had hit the skids a long time ago, and they have to try something. Good luck to them.

RE: PalmOS becomes skin for mLinux
mikecane @ 12/9/2004 9:23:52 AM #
>>>Personally, I think the company is now on its third shock from the paddles, and is still not showing any real signs of brain activity.

That is SUCH a good line! Bravo.

PalmLinux resuscitates PalmOS? Nope.
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 12/9/2004 11:34:00 PM #
The "paddles" are for CARDIOversion. As in heart. We don't usually monitor brain activity during a resuscitation. But no doubt you meant ECT. Now it all makes sense.

Stay in school, Bubba.


******************************************************************
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.

RE: PalmOS becomes skin for mLinux
rayz @ 12/10/2004 6:42:34 AM #
<< Stay in school, Bubba. >>

Well mate. I have a day job, so I don't have time to study ER reruns ... :-/

Nagel has NO SHAME

Gekko @ 12/8/2004 11:43:56 PM #

I have no problem with executives making money, but what has this guy done to earn this level of compensation?

NAGEL, DAVID C
Reported Shares Ownership
2-Dec-04 384,833 Direct

Date Shares Stock Transaction
2-Dec-04 15,000 PSRC Automatic Sale at $15.8181 per share.
(Proceeds of $237,271)
1-Nov-04 15,000 PSRC Automatic Sale at $20.41 per share.
(Proceeds of $306,150)
1-Oct-04 15,000 PSRC Automatic Sale at $20.7955 per share.
(Proceeds of $311,932)
19-Aug-04 10,000 PSRC Automatic Sale at $19.1298 per share.
(Proceeds of $191,298)
18-Aug-04 10,000 PSRC Automatic Sale at $18.3927 per share.
(Proceeds of $183,927)
17-Aug-04 10,000 PSRC Automatic Sale at $18.2523 per share.
(Proceeds of $182,523)
16-Aug-04 10,000 PSRC Automatic Sale at $18.2392 per share.
(Proceeds of $182,392)
13-Aug-04 10,000 PSRC Automatic Sale at $18.0762 per share.
(Proceeds of $180,762)
12-Aug-04 10,000 PSRC Automatic Sale at $18.2903 per share.
(Proceeds of $182,902)
11-Aug-04 10,000 PSRC Automatic Sale at $18.7396 per share.
(Proceeds of $187,396)
10-Aug-04 10,000 PSRC Automatic Sale at $18.6207 per share.
(Proceeds of $186,207)
9-Aug-04 10,000 PSRC Automatic Sale at $18.5696 per share.
(Proceeds of $185,696)
6-Aug-04 10,000 PSRC Automatic Sale at $19.3301 per share.
(Proceeds of $193,301)
5-Aug-04 10,000 PSRC Automatic Sale at $20.96 per share.
(Proceeds of $209,600)

http://biz.yahoo.com/t/46/3395.html



RE: Automatic sales
Admin @ 12/9/2004 2:04:54 AM #
Wow, I personally think Nagel has done a great job so far, however to put this in context, he earns more in a single "automatic sale" than PalmInfocenter has generated in ad sales over 5 years.
RE: Nagel has NO SHAME
hkklife @ 12/9/2004 9:29:09 AM #
Ryan, it's nice to see you chiming in more nowadays with more news item comments. I don't know what your policy is site content-wise but have you considered doing a "Letter from the Editor" type commentary/opinion article on the current (sad) state of things in Palm-land? You know, sort of like those preachy, fluffy articles Steve & Ed used to write for Brighthand but without slapping yer mug all over the article!
;-)

At any rate, since the writing's clearly on the wall for the broken-down old Mule that is the Palmconomy, there's never been a better time to: A. Thank Ryan for his timeless, often thankless work put into maintaining the site. B. Make the offer that if there needs to be a "Save PIC" shortterm fund established anytime soon, I am sure that all of us "old school" regulars can chip in a few PayPal $. And yes, I do click those banners...sometimes.

RE: Nagel has NO SHAME
numlock @ 12/9/2004 11:49:35 AM #
Is that Nagel's stock record or the City of Las Vegas electric bill?
Ryan, why not put up a PIC PayPal link?
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 12/9/2004 11:40:44 PM #
. Make the offer that if there needs to be a "Save PIC" shortterm fund established anytime soon, I am sure that all of us "old school" regulars can chip in a few PayPal $.



I completely agree that you should consider putting a PayPal donation link for PIC on the site's main page.

If things get ugly in the Palm Economy in 2005, you shouldn't have to scrounge for money to keep the site going. And please don't become another PalmStation.


******************************************************************
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.

PalmLinux™ - PalmSource's endgame.

The_Voice_of_Reason @ 12/9/2004 2:24:44 AM #
PalmLinux™ - PalmSource's endgame.

World Series.

Palm is down 3 games to none.

Game 4, tied at zero, with home team (PPC) up to bat.

Bases loaded.

None out.

Bottom of the ninth.

Barry Bonds at the plate.

Relief pitcher Be (#69) throws three straight balls.

Manager Nagel comes out, taps Be on the shoulder and calls for a reliever.

No one comes out.

Then Manager Nagel remembers he fired all his other relief pitchers in 2002.

Umpire gets annoyed.

Fans start booing.

Manager Nagel looks over to the ballboy, China MobileSoft (#4).

"You play in Little League, right?"

China MobileSoft nods.

"Here's 1,570,000 shares of PalmSource common stock and a uniform - go pitch to Barry Bonds."

China MobileSoft pockets the American Capitalist Pig stocks.

China MobileSoft sells the American Capitalist Pig stocks at guaranteed price of $10/share.

China MobileSoft pitches to Barry Bonds.




******************************************************************
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.

RE: PalmLinux™ - PalmSource's endgame.
Admin @ 12/9/2004 4:23:03 AM #
then let's hope Mr Barry Bonds is playing fair
RE: PalmLinux™ - PalmSource's endgame.
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 12/9/2004 4:39:55 AM #
Have you ever seen Bonds? The guy's biceps are the size of Mike Cane's HEAD! He's gotta be on 'roids. No one could do what he does without 'roids (and a rather large helping of natural talent, I'll admit).

palmLinux or PalmLinux? Which one should I have PalmSource use, Ryan? Maybe I'll take a poll among my Be engineer Palm buddies tomorrow...

No doubt some of the Be engineers would have preferred the BDsM flavor of Unix over the Linux flavor, but I suppose obediant, whipped beggars can't be choosers.



******************************************************************
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.

Misc

Winter_ @ 12/9/2004 5:23:26 AM #
After months of Palm-induced boredom, I came here again looking for some new info after reading elsewhere about LG's choosing Savaje OS instead of "other mobile OSes", and about that sh1t about the "iPhone". And whoa, there's a whole bunch of even-funnier info.

Original article: "bringing the benefits of Palm OS to the Linux community"
This made me laugh. So, no mention about the benefits of Linux (and the Linux community) to the Palm decaying ecosystem, huh?
Man, I had forgotten how twisted these things can get on here.

Altema: You use the stock memopad?
So you mean we, users of the "easiest, most user friendly, most useful" (TM) mobile OS are supposed to NOT use the stock apps?
Why? because they suck so much? ;)

Ever heard about those apps that circumvent the OS limitations just to be able to write a larger-than-4K memo? So pityful...

Mikecane:I've investigated the Linuxed Sharp Zaurus. You practically need a goddammed engineering degree to load apps onto that thing. And even the Linux cultists couldn't tell me HTF to get FONTS onto it to use with the Hancom WP app!

Some months ago I pointed you to the results of the very first google search I did about the subject. It looked quite interesting (and even simple :P); you never answered. Did you even try that?

And now you expect these same telcoms to go for LINUX?! Something so OPEN?
What's exactly your problem with "open"?
Do you mean that manufacturers can't trim down some Linux distro (possibly an "old one" so it is mature and known and bug-free enough) and pack it so the end user can't do arbitrary things with it?
Ever heard about "root user", permissions, and microdistros?
Even if needed, ever heard about "trustedlinux" and the like?

Open letter: What sort of technologies does Linux help you with?
A. Two areas that stand out immediately are chipset support, and device drivers (for features like WiFi and Bluetooth).

Laughing again. Deja vu! Not willing to check it now, but I seem to remember that I myself said months ago that this would be an advantage over the traditional PalmOS and Palm ways. Remember that Palm-branded, non-OS5-compatible Bluetooth SD Card?
Not that this was too hard to see, but still I got some flames... :)

WereW0lf: I don't see why I shouldn't just go buy a Zarus, port the existing open source emulator and be done with it!

In fact, you don't need to port anything. It's been there for ages. Install the debian package (typing something like "apt install pose") and be done with it, man! ;)

-----------------

There's something I haven't seen mentioned. There are lots of talk about "Palm OS on Linux", as "OS on OS"; to me this all sounds more like just a software layer, and in fact the Palm letter mentions that. They even mention the possibility of installing it on top of other Linuxes! Just like OpenSTEP/GnuSTEP is, just like Java is. Just like .NET/Mono/DotGNU is.
I find that interesting. However I'd like to know the advantages of this (for everybody: developers, users, and PalmSource) instead of just going with Java or .NET or GnuSTEP. I can only think of compatibility with legacy apps...
...perhaps these Cobalt / Protein APIs are really that compelling? Strange... quite a heavy bet! :)

Man, if I had been related to the development of Cobalt (the OS) -if it ever existed-... I'd certainly be pondering some kind of Tibetan retirement of whatever. Oh, the pain...


RE: Misc
mikecane @ 12/9/2004 9:29:13 AM #
>>>Some months ago I pointed you to the results of the very first google search I did about the subject. It looked quite interesting (and even simple :P); you never answered. Did you even try that?

Can you post that URL again? This I gotta see.



RE: Misc
Winter_ @ 12/9/2004 2:28:30 PM #

Apple brings a knife to a gun fight

mikecane @ 12/9/2004 12:52:33 PM #
RE: Apple brings a knife to a gun fight
Palm Addict @ 12/9/2004 10:32:38 PM #
I'm both a Palm and Mac user "Addict : )" by the way, I like both OS and their offerings. But even before buying my first Palm PDA, I had my sights set on the Newton back then.

And if Apple does indeed put credence to that iPhone thing, whether or not it would converge with the iPod evolution and if it proves to be a worthy alternative to the Treo; and if Cobalt and / or this Palm OS over Linux thing wouldn't get its act over and done quickly right away to produce new hardware as promised; I might be persuaded to go for Apple once again for my mobile fix!

Bad thing for Apple (Newton division!) and eventually a good thing for Palm though, because they've benefited from the Newtons demise in the past. But the iPod & Mac OS X is now tightly integrated with each other (and by itself), than what the Newton & Mac OS was back then. And if PS couldn't get their act together in time, the reverse could happen as well for the demise of Palm.

I like the the Palm OS, my old Visor Prism and the Treo 600, (but not the Treo 650), eventhough I crave for it's Bluetooth connectivity and other minor features added. But what I really want now is an all-in-one convergent device that does everything effectively, that's all.

m505 > Visor Prism + Visor Phone + EyeModule + ThinModem Plus FlashPlus + SmartPad > Treo 600 this holiday season!

RE: Apple brings a knife to a gun fight
Palm Addict @ 12/9/2004 10:32:38 PM #
I'm both a Palm and Mac user "Addict : )" by the way, I like both OS and their offerings. But even before buying my first Palm PDA, I had my sights set on the Newton back then.

And if Apple does indeed put credence to that iPhone thing, whether or not it would converge with the iPod evolution and if it proves to be a worthy alternative to the Treo; and if Cobalt and / or this Palm OS over Linux thing wouldn't get its act over and done quickly right away to produce new hardware as promised; I might be persuaded to go for Apple once again for my mobile fix!

Bad thing for Apple (Newton division!) and eventually a good thing for Palm though, because they've benefited from the Newtons demise in the past. But the iPod & Mac OS X is now tightly integrated with each other (and by itself), than what the Newton & Mac OS was back then. And if PS couldn't get their act together in time, the reverse could happen as well for the demise of Palm.

I like the the Palm OS, my old Visor Prism and the Treo 600, (but not the Treo 650), eventhough I crave for it's Bluetooth connectivity and other minor features added. But what I really want now is an all-in-one convergent device that does everything easily and effectively, that's all.

m505 > Visor Prism + Visor Phone + EyeModule + ThinModem Plus FlashPlus + SmartPad > Treo 600 this holiday season!

Will there be... Java?

mikecane @ 12/9/2004 5:30:55 PM #

Technology is only as good as the MONEY it makes.

benamy @ 12/10/2004 9:58:20 AM #
I have read through all this jaw jacking from all you software hacks and have found it all very boring!!!!

All this is this a good tech move? Is the zen of Palm OS lost? OS on OS pitfalls? bla bla bla bla???

The real question is revolves around is this a good business move and will this make money for PSRC who can not break even?

And I say it is a good move because of these facts.

1) OS 6 sucks or does not work because if it did it would be out in a device that is for sale
2) Have any of you researched China MobileSoft? Because I have and found that they are partnered with ZTE and Konka plus CEC wireless.
3) Have you hacks researched ZTE or Konka? Because I have and found that ZTE is the largest cell phone maker in China with no feature phones listed as well as no smartphone devices and Konka is the same but also big into TV manufacturing.

I also easily found Konka's cell phone strategy that should lay out the benefits of why this is the best move PSRC has made so far.

But let me just preface it with CHINA+LINUX+Smartphone= BIG $$$.
China is all growth.
Linux is all growth.
Smartphones are all growth.
All three have got to go somewhere and PSRC is going to ride that tiger by the tail through China MobileSoft!!!
Sounds like PSRC is going to be all growth if they can get some, any product sold by ZTE or Konka or CEC plus what PSRC is already doing with PLMO.

So take a look at Konka's plans because all I care about all this is does PSRC have a viable product to sell these companies list above because remember what makes technology happen and it not who writes the best code the most efficently because Bill Gates sure did not do that to monopolize the desktop market. What makes technology happen is bucks.

Remember- NO BUCKS NO BUCKROGERS.

Check out Konka's plans:

Domestic Cell Phone Producer Announces 3G Plan

The call of last year's for 3rd generation (3G) mobile phone was all from the European and American old brand mobile phone dealers. Early this year, Chinese mobile phone producers became the protagonists for the first time.

Konka announced last week its 3G plan: in mid-2005, Konka's self-developed 3G mobile phone will make its appearance. "In the era of 3G, Konka will strive to be not only a powerful mobile phone manufacturer, but also the pacesetter of the whole industry," said Huang Zhongtian, general manager of Shenzhen Konka Communication Technology Ltd confidently.

Konka's blueprint of 3G is: in 2004 tracking various 3G standards and promoting mainly serial high-end camera mobile phones. In this phase, Konka will invest 500 million yuan (US$60.4 million). The focus will be on the expansion of the "Konka Central Academy". The academy, founded in 2003, is Konka's R&D base for 3G technology.

In the middle of 2005, Konka will bring to the market samples of self-developed 3G mobile phones and meanwhile multimedia mobile phones able to take high-quality images. From 2006 to 2008, Konka hopes to become "the company with the most complete 3G mobile phone assembly lines in China".

At a press conference, with regard to which kind of 3G standard Konka will choose to be the focus of the media, Huang indicated they would track three kinds of international standards in an all-round way, saying "We have no right or capital to gamble on any standard but should try our best to make our products compatible."

Now Konka does not have CDMA (Code Division Multiple Access) license, therefore insiders guess that Konka will possibly concentrate on the two major 3G standards: European WCDMA (Wideband Code Division Multiple Access) and China's TD-SCDMA (Time Division Synchronous Code Division Multiple Access).

(People's Daily February 24, 2004)



Dumba$$ American companies get SODOMIZED in China
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 12/10/2004 9:39:17 PM #
PalmSource is the equivalent of a guppy swimming in shark-infested waters in China. Piracy is rampant. Americans are hated. The Chinese government only will use foreign companies as long as they (China) are the main beneficiary. Once the IP has been stolen - I mean "examined" - the Yanks will be on the next slow boat back to the States with their tails between their legs, wondering why it hurts so muh to sit down. What has happened with Palm's previous China initiative?

Edumacate yourself about what has happened to MAJOR American companies like Microsoft, Chrysler, etc when trying to do business in China. These companies drool over what they see as a massive, untapped market. Only problem is, Western Rules Don't Apply. It's like the games of chance at a carnival. "Step right up folks, win yourself a piece of a BILLION person market!" Bend over and hope they're kind enough to at least use a little lube - things are gonna get rough.


******************************************************************
Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.

RE: Technology is only as good as the MONEY it makes.
benamy @ 12/13/2004 2:06:42 AM #
As far as the Palm OS getting stolen from PSRC it is unlikely.

The Palm OS is on a ROM based software product that is embedded into a unique device design. If the Chinese want to go to all the trouble of pirating such a complex process they can go for it because PALM OS LINUX will be an OPEN SOURCE product that will be supported by China MobileSoft through PSRC.

Pirating OPEN SOURCE products is great. It create issues that only legitimate SUPPORT companies can resolve.

So go ahead and pirate the complex ROM based OPEN SOURCE product because PSRC will need to be involved to get the product to work.

I fail to understand your argument of how that MODEL has FAILED in China. GM, Microsoft, and all the other did not have that model as they conducted business in China.


Pirating PalmOS in China. The untold story.
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 12/13/2004 8:14:13 AM #
As far as the Palm OS getting stolen from PSRC it is unlikely.

The Palm OS is on a ROM based software product that is embedded into a unique device design. If the Chinese want to go to all the trouble of pirating such a complex process they can go for it because PALM OS LINUX will be an OPEN SOURCE product that will be supported by China MobileSoft through PSRC.

Pirating OPEN SOURCE products is great. It create issues that only legitimate SUPPORT companies can resolve.

So go ahead and pirate the complex ROM based OPEN SOURCE product because PSRC will need to be involved to get the product to work.

I fail to understand your argument of how that MODEL has FAILED in China. GM, Microsoft, and all the other did not have that model as they conducted business in China.

Really? I thought PalmSource has ALREADY had PalmOS "stolen" from it. Something about a former licencee who's name begins with "A". Who was that again?

The only thing open source about a future PalmLinux might be the Linux-based kernel. Everything else that sits on top of that kernel (GUI, PACE, etc) is modular and proprietary. Pirates will take it all, thank you very much. Pirating PalmOS (any version) is as easy as pie. If you think otherwise, you evidently don't know what you're talking about.

TVoR




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Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.

RE: Technology is only as good as the MONEY it makes.
Admin @ 12/13/2004 10:33:08 AM #
Make sure you noticed this very insightful statement posted by:


Pirating OPEN SOURCE products is great. It create issues that only legitimate SUPPORT companies can resolve.

RE: Technology is only as good as the MONEY it makes.
Surur @ 12/13/2004 12:21:44 PM #
Pirating OPEN SOURCE products is great. It create issues that only legitimate SUPPORT companies can resolve.

Surely this is nonsense. Open source means ANY competent coder can provide support. Close source means only people who can see and inspect the code can really understand the behaviour of their software.

Again, the original statement is nonsense.

Surur

PalmLinux + GNU GPL + China = ? abort, retry, fail, abort, r
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 12/13/2004 12:47:09 PM #
Make sure you noticed this very insightful statement posted by:


Pirating OPEN SOURCE products is great. It create issues that only legitimate SUPPORT companies can resolve.

Good one, Ryan. This guy is obviously in dire need of a clue. He also doesn't seem to understand that just because Palm might eventually use a kernel (Linux) that was written and distributed under the GNU GPL doesn't give the world carte blanche to rip off every proprietary component of PalmLinux.

To my confused little buddy: If I give you a nail and you use it to help build a mansion, that doesn't mean I also own your mansion.

Lazy a$$ed freeloaders that think nothing is worth paying for are a big reason why not many PalmOS developers can make a living in this depressed "Palm Economy".

;-O



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Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.

So, does anybody know how long we're going to wait again?

Palm Addict @ 12/10/2004 9:04:12 PM #
A good move is a start.

Money talks and sh*t walks.

Now............does anybody heard or know how long should we wait (again) till we get our hands on that "new" Palm OS over Linux?

I could wait.............but not forever!

m505 > Visor Prism + Visor Phone + EyeModule + ThinModem Plus + FlashPlus + SmartPad > Treo 600 this holiday season!

RE: So, does anybody know how long we're going to wait again?
NewtonDKC @ 12/11/2004 12:27:20 AM #
THat's been my big question since the whole Linux kernel was announced - so how long until we see a real, shipping product based on this?
My guess is a year at minimum. PalmSource will have to develop it, and say that even with the Linux Kernel saving them half a year of development time (which I;m sure is VERY unrealistic given the glacial pace Palm typically seems to move at). And then there's the hardware itself, so PalmOne takes the OS and tests and tweaks, etc. Then throw in ramping production, merketing prep, etc - I think we'll be lucky if we see one of the "New" Palms by Christmas next year. More likely, I'd say Summer 2006.
Of course, I may be really embarrassing myself if it's already been stated somewhere how long they estimate this will take and I simply haven't come across it. Then again, regardless of what they say, what actually happens will be the thing that matters - so I'll still believe it when I have a Palm that multitasks, has built in WiFi and BT and is agvailable to buy right now before I feel Palm may have a chance at being a solid choice again. Yep - I did go tot he dark side, and sure there are annoyances, but while Palm wants us to wait yet again (or buy an overpriced, under-featured product like the T5, which I actually like except for the price until the "real" Palm's come out). In the meantime, I'll actually be getting work done on my 4705 with dual wireless and VGA, Dual slots, etc. It may give me a couple headaches here and there, but at least it's available now, and does work, even if somewhat less elegantly than a Palm OS product that looks like it was made in this century.
Okay, so back tot he original question - How Long? Has anyone seen any official estimates? Maybe Dianne would be kind of enough to give us some speculation (which of course we understand that's it's a guess and not something to hold you to, etc - just give those of us who still have a glimmer of hope for the platform an idea!). :-)
Newton

What happened to BeOS?

1010011010 @ 12/12/2004 8:59:21 AM #
Just made an account on PIC for this question... what happened to BeOS?

Palm(One/Source) bought that great OS, they announced around 2000/2001 that PalmOS 6 will be built upon BeOS.

Now they're announcing they're going with Linux. Hmm...

So, did they drop BeOS, or did they actually use some of its source-code in PalmOS 6? Or did they just waste money on a dead operating system (beloved by many - and me)?

I couldn't find any newer story concerning Palm/BeOS developments... it kind of faded away...

RE: What happened to BeOS?
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 12/12/2004 10:51:08 PM #
Palm's Be purchase was a Yankowski-orchestrated payoff to Pépé Gassee, another menber of the Apple Dumpling Gang. Pépé got just $11 million from Palm in 2001 (after the dumba$$ had turned down an offer from Apple of $125 million for Be in 1996).

Palm also got a few dozen depressed, pie in the sky Be engineers in the deal. They ended up working on UI, multimedia and other components of PalmOS 6, recycling old Be designs. But they're slow as molasses in January, insist on having Perfect Code, and weren't able to pull off the dramatic PalmOS 6 transition on schedule. PalmOS 6 still isn't complete - a year after they claimed it was ready. Licencees got sick of the dog and pony act and told PalmSource to go fcuk itself. PalmSource finally pulled the plug on PalmOS 6 and is now hoping that PalmLinux will save the company - assuming they can hold out with duct taped versions of PalmOS 5 for another two years until PalmLinux might actually be ready for prime time.

The Be story ranks right up there with Netscape and Apple for computer tragedy fans. If only Pépé hadn't been so greedy, the MacOS in use today would likely have been based on BeOS and they would have all been rich and famous. Instead, the demoralized Be engineers are now left to picking pieces of Be code out of the PalmOS 6 garbage like vagrants scavenging a dumpster, hoping to find something that can be recycled on PalmLinux.


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Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.

RE: What happened to BeOS?
hackbod @ 12/13/2004 4:26:16 AM #
This explanation is, of course, from someone who doesn't actually have any current inside knowledge of PalmSource.

A few particular corrections:

"recycling old Be designs"

There is pretty much no code in Cobalt that actually appeared in BeOS. The Be-related technology in Cobalt is mostly a set of UI and media frameworks we had been designing for a while before the Palm acquisition. These were intended to be a "next-generation BeOS", to address many of the design flaws in the BeOS frameworks that had become a particular problem when we did the stripped-down version for BeIA. As it turned out, a lot of the problems we were addressing for this new system design were directly applicable to a next-generation PalmOS, and so were used for Cobalt.

That said, the technology in Cobalt that was started at Be makes up a small (though in some ways fundamental) part of the whole system. Some parts of Cobalt were being designed by Palm when the acquisition happend (the kernel, IOS, and new Data Manager), some parts were implemented by Be and Palm engineers using the new Be frameworks (the Window Manager, Sound Manager, Notification Manager, Attention Manager), some parts were code that was ported from Garnet and then extended (basically all of the applications, the Form Manager and everything on top of it).

"insist on having Perfect Code"

One of TVoR's delusions. I have posted comments before of clear examples showing this is not the case.

"weren't able to pull off the dramatic PalmOS 6 transition on schedule"

Cobalt went GM 6 months later than originally scheduled. For the most part engineering didn't believe in the original schedule, but agreed on it with the condition that the resulting product at that point would never actually show up on a device. :) Ultimately, it was decided to push out the schedule so we would have a real GM.

Even so, being 6 months late creating a new operating system is hard to view as a failure.

"PalmOS 6 still isn't complete"

Which begs the question of what isn't complete about it.

"told PalmSource to go fcuk itself"

Think TVoR will tell us who his inside source is for this information?

"PalmSource finally pulled the plug on PalmOS 6"

Given that we are still too early in the process of working on "PalmOS for Linux" to completely know what it means, it is remarkable that TVoR seems to know better than we do. That said, in broad outlines it should be all of the higher-level system services (starting, for example, with the core frameworks from Be and things built on top of them) running on top of a Linux kernel. For the pieces between the kernel and user-space frameworks (Data Manager, IOS), it's still not clear exactly what they will look like.

This is hardly "pulling the plug" in Cobalt. Cobalt is our main product today, and as the announcement says it is not being cancelled. We fully expect a significant number of devices to ship with it. We continue, today, to be doing significant work on "Cobalt with the original kernel" for specific licensees and future major releases.

"picking pieces of Be code out of the PalmOS 6"

The funny thing about this is that the code that originally came from Be is probably the easiest to deal with -- it has already been ported from the BeOS kernel, which just so happens to be a Unix-like kernel not that different (on the outside) than Linux.

Another day, another port. :)


--
Dianne
PalmSource Application Frameworks Manager

RE: What happened to BeOS?
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 12/13/2004 7:20:13 AM #
This explanation is, of course, from someone who doesn't actually have any current inside knowledge of PalmSource.

Whatever.

A few particular corrections:

"recycling old Be designs"

There is pretty much no code in Cobalt that actually appeared in BeOS. The Be-related technology in Cobalt is mostly a set of UI and media frameworks we had been designing for a while before the Palm acquisition. These were intended to be a "next-generation BeOS", to address many of the design flaws in the BeOS frameworks that had become a particular problem when we did the stripped-down version for BeIA. As it turned out, a lot of the problems we were addressing for this new system design were directly applicable to a next-generation PalmOS, and so were used for Cobalt.

That said, the technology in Cobalt that was started at Be makes up a small (though in some ways fundamental) part of the whole system. Some parts of Cobalt were being designed by Palm when the acquisition happend (the kernel, IOS, and new Data Manager), some parts were implemented by Be and Palm engineers using the new Be frameworks (the Window Manager, Sound Manager, Notification Manager, Attention Manager), some parts were code that was ported from Garnet and then extended (basically all of the applications, the Form Manager and everything on top of it).

In other words, pretty much exactly what I said (but a little more wordy). ;-O

"insist on having Perfect Code"

One of TVoR's delusions. I have posted comments before of clear examples showing this is not the case.

You know this is one of Be's lingering faults. You people just can't seem to help yourselves.

"weren't able to pull off the dramatic PalmOS 6 transition on schedule"

Cobalt went GM 6 months later than originally scheduled. For the most part engineering didn't believe in the original schedule, but agreed on it with the condition that the resulting product at that point would never actually show up on a device. :) Ultimately, it was decided to push out the schedule so we would have a real GM.

Even so, being 6 months late creating a new operating system is hard to view as a failure.

Cobalt 6.0 supposedly went gold in December, 2003. Then we get ZERO shipping devices in 2004 and Cobalt 6.1 released in what, September, 2004? Whatever, DK. I'm not saying this is unusual, bad, or unexpected. Just please don't try to BS the facts away.

"PalmOS 6 still isn't complete"

Which begs the question of what isn't complete about it.

Are you going on record on Palminfocenter as saying Cobalt's features are now complete??? Good Lord! I'd love to hear your response to this one. Please. Indulge me, Mistress.

"told PalmSource to go fcuk itself"

Think TVoR will tell us who his inside source is for this information?

Nope. Nice try.

"PalmSource finally pulled the plug on PalmOS 6"

Given that we are still too early in the process of working on "PalmOS for Linux" to completely know what it means, it is remarkable that TVoR seems to know better than we do. That said, in broad outlines it should be all of the higher-level system services (starting, for example, with the core frameworks from Be and things built on top of them) running on top of a Linux kernel. For the pieces between the kernel and user-space frameworks (Data Manager, IOS), it's still not clear exactly what they will look like.

This is hardly "pulling the plug" in Cobalt. Cobalt is our main product today, and as the announcement says it is not being cancelled. We fully expect a significant number of devices to ship with it. We continue, today, to be doing significant work on "Cobalt with the original kernel" for specific licensees and future major releases.

I don't know of any real companies that would dare say that their "main product today" has been available for a year and STILL isn't being used by anyone. That's the kind of crap we saw from all those VAPORWARE startups run by pimply-faced 22 year olds back in 1999. Palm used to be a real company, with real products. How odd.

If PalmSource continues to give an equal amount resources + support to Cobalt and devices start shipping soon with any regularity running Cobalt, I'll be the first to say you were right. Until that happens, I stand by my statement: PalmSource has pulled the plug on Cobalt/PalmOS 6.

"picking pieces of Be code out of the PalmOS 6"

The funny thing about this is that the code that originally came from Be is probably the easiest to deal with -- it has already been ported from the BeOS kernel, which just so happens to be a Unix-like kernel not that different (on the outside) than Linux.

Another day, another port. :)


--
Dianne
PalmSource Application Frameworks Manager

Yes, that Perfect Be Code (PBC) is so good it must have been derived from Alien Technology™ licensed from Area 51, Inc. Sheeeesh.



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Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.

RE: What happened to BeOS? RIP.
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 12/16/2004 1:08:51 AM #
Interesting how when the facts are presented, suddenly all the BS walks. PalmSource's resident spin doctor, Michael Mace seems to have disappeared like ether in the desert sun.

I actually feel sorry for the Be engineers remaining at PalmSource. 10 years ago, they were part of a vibrant company that represented all that was good about the 90s tech craze. BeOS was in many ways far ahead of its time and could easily have claimed its place in history as the new Mac OS. Instead, greed got the best of Pépé Gassee and the company quickly fell on hard times, desperately prostituting its ideals to fetid c r a p like the eVilla just to stay alive.

It must have been painful to go from dreams of coding the ultimate desktop OS to cobbling together a lowly PDA OS. And now to be told that they will be replaced by a group of engineers from a Chinese Linux startup? Wow. That's gotta hurt. Paxil's going to be in short supply in Sunnyvale. Hope no one does anything drastic.



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Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.

RE: What happened to BeOS?
The_Voice_of_Reason @ 9/10/2005 3:40:14 PM #
This is hardly "pulling the plug" in Cobalt. Cobalt is our main product today, and as the announcement says it is not being cancelled. We fully expect a significant number of devices to ship with it. We continue, today, to be doing significant work on "Cobalt with the original kernel" for specific licensees and future major releases.


Where is Cobalt now, DK?


TVoR

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Sony CLIE UX100: 128 MB real RAM, OLED screen. All the PDA anyone really ever wanted.
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The Palm eCONomy = Communism™

The Great Palm Swindle: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=7864#108038

How PalmSource is REALLY doing: http://www.palminfocenter.com/comment_view.asp?ID=8026#110958

Why Linux over BeOS?

jbeedham @ 12/14/2004 8:44:28 PM #
Why use Linux over BeOS?

From what I understand, the BeOS architecture is far superior to the Linux kernel with its unique architecture. Linux on the other hand seems like an ancient os (which it really is) that uses a macrokernel where any new changes to os have to be implemented into the kernel. This ends up in a very bloated kernel that runs sluggish to how beos runs. BeOS uses a microkernel with a server/plug-in type architecture. This would make it very easy to use and add stuff to the system. Just install Linux and BeOS on the same hardware and see what I mean.

-------------------------------------------------------
Proud owner of a Sony TJ-37!

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