proposal: how to the unify the user interface

Ron K. Jeffries rjeffries at
Wed Jul 7 23:36:05 EDT 2010

Comments in line marked $$rkj:

On Wed, Jul 7, 2010 at 18:54, Wolfgang Spraul <wolfgang at> wrote:

> Ron,
> > Ben Nanonote is a clever device, but it's not
> > clear (to me) that considering Ben as the base
> > for a significant next product is a sound idea.
> Puh. We tried so many times to explain this project to you. This is a
> copyleft hardware project.

$rkj: I understand that, and do not need it explained to me. ;)  But you
knew that. I have great respect for you and your ideals. That doesn't mean
we always agree, or that I will always be wrong. ;)

> The roadmap for NanoNote, manufactured
> by Sharism is:
> Ben -> Ya -> Mu -> Guo
> All of them will have more or less the same outside form factor.

$$rkj I can understand that, near term. It leverages the considerable $$$
invested in Ben Nanonote, which I assume
has not yet turned profitable.

Since Sharisim is nearing end of stock for
the first run of Ben, maybe what you are expressing is the justification for
making the second factory run  several thousand rather than the initial
1,000 units.One takes that path if and only if an unchanged YA model will
continue to sell for say the next 2-3 years.

> will move towards more and more freedom. Maybe the Ya NanoNote is exactly
> like the Ben, only with free CAD design and free production testing
> software.
> That would be a cool launch headline:
> Ya NanoNote: now with free CAD design and production testing software. Yay!
> $$rkj Before too long, users might want/demand some small but key
improvements features such as 64MB RAM, or USB host capability. Ya Nanonote
was never expected to be Ben + open 3D CAD models or Ben + production test
software. ;)

> IMO there is no point in making improved copyleft hardware until the free
> software we have today maxes out our current hardware. The Ben is
> great today, and becomes more and more useful every month.

$$rkj agree. <<<--- please note. ;)

> But still it's far
> less usable than any proprietary dictionary device. Not good. That needs
> to be improved before hardware improvements are made.

> Or does copyleft
> hardware to you mean to spend a lot of money in hardware to overcome
> the deficiencies of free software and content?
> I have no problem selling the Ben NanoNote for another 5 years. There is
> no copyleft hardware competition anyway, and we have time to make the free
> technology really solid, deeper and more usable.
> $$rkj that's fine, implies that people who value the copyleft principles do
not at the same time want hardware that is at least fairly close to what
non-copyleft devices have.

Most especially, a bigger screen with touch capability would add a HUGE
amount of value to all prospective purchasers.

Marc - about the screen. Just 3 months

 ago we found out that the drive IC

> is actually made by Ilitek, not Giantplus (the LCM module maker). As a next
> step I want to go visit Ilitek, to talk about their roadmap, openly
> available datasheets, who their main customers (LCM module makers) are,
> etc.
> This is to protect the investment made into free technology, in this case
> by
> Lars who wrote the Ilitek drive IC GPL driver and is currently pushing it
> upstream. Changing the QVGA resolution would also throw us back in many
> areas that are just now developing (OpenWrt, Jlime).
> All of this will remain stable - free software continuity is key to the
> success of this project. I am using my Ben NanoNote all the time, and I
> wouldn't want the successor to be worse than the Ben!? That doesn't sound
> like a very sound idea to me.
> When we have enough good free software and content on the Ben, and enough
> proven hardware hacks on the Ben, we know it's time to move to Ya.

> Way to go Ben NanoNote! :-)
> Wolfgang
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <>

More information about the discussion mailing list