Booting in the dark

Gerald A geraldablists at
Sun Feb 21 11:46:00 EST 2010

On Sat, Feb 20, 2010 at 11:45 AM, <jemarch at> wrote:

>   What I would say to this is that you have people who like to hack
>   their devices. That's good.  However, you and I have to realize
>   that MOST people just want to buy and use a device. No hacking, no
>   command line funniness, no piddling with conf files.
> I don't think the device is ready for that kind of users.  It is more
> like a prototyping platform than an end-user gadget.  Currently, if
> you are not able to use a terminal and to compile your own
> applications, the Nanonote is completely useless.

I honestly don't want to get into a shed-painting argument here. I
responded to the OP who said "this is why I think splash screens suck, and
why we
shouldn't have one".

I wanted to voice the "other side", and argued that utopia would be
non-RELEASE builds with text boots, RELEASE builds with splash, and an easy
(one keystroke?) way to switch back and forth. I don't know how much work
this would be, and I'm not presumptuous enough to put it on some developers

My post was an effort to explain that for one class of users, splash screens
are needed.

>From a development point of view the boot splash screen is a nuisance
> that doesn't allow to see what the boot process is doing.  For end
> users? ok, they will love to have a splash screen.  But IMHO we should
> get some kind of end-user interface that could be installed in the NN
> before to think about splash screens.

I think if it's early enough to disparage them, it's early enough to think
about them.
Does that mean it's early enough to devote code time? Maybe not, but each
open source developer has a different itch.

I'm not trying to shift development effort, but rather mindset. If we build
a device and software, I'd rather not have it relegated to JUST prototype
status for it's entire existence. If we assume we will get past prototypes
(fingers crossed), then that device should appeal to early adopters,
many/most of whom won't be hackers. In that case, if we have an easy way to
switch "on" a boottime  animation/splash, that would be great.

I went down this path, as I said. With my Openmoko phone, I had lots of CLI,
and I loved the linux boot scroll. Reactions from others though,
was definitely mixed.

So far, I've heard "It's too early" and "I don't like it". Fine. I'll say
it, "Splash screens suck". :)

Now, is there any real technical reason we shouldn't try to make it easy to
switch back and forth between them?

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