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Ruby on the Zaurus

 
 
gregarican
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      07-29-2005
A few years ago I toyed around some with the Sharp Zaurus SL-5500
handheld. It was nice having a palmtop unit that I could use for a host
of development and administration tasks with the aid of a wifi card.
Now I see these units being advertised as refurbs for only about $150
US so I picked one up again to see if I can use it as a platform for my
company's salesforce. Has anyone installed Ruby on the Zaurus?

 
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rubyhacker@gmail.com
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      07-29-2005
It's been done. See these search results:

http://groups-beta.google.com/group/...arch?q=zaurus&

However, I think this platform has rather limited memory -- difficult
to do a "fat" Ruby install. And I think the GUI is fairly proprietary
(as with most PDAa) so I don't know if there are Ruby bindings
for it.


Cheers,
Hal

 
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Cam
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      07-29-2005
On 7/29/05, http://www.velocityreviews.com/forums/(E-Mail Removed) <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
> It's been done. See these search results:
>=20
> http://groups-beta.google.com/group/...ch?q=3Dzaurus&
>=20
> However, I think this platform has rather limited memory -- difficult
> to do a "fat" Ruby install. And I think the GUI is fairly proprietary
> (as with most PDAa) so I don't know if there are Ruby bindings
> for it.


I thought this interface was just qtopia? I think (could be wrong,
i've never owned a zaurus), but i was under the impression that qt
apps will work (so as long as you could get the ruby bindings ported
to strongARM or whatever it is i think you couls just write w/ the qt
ruby bindings)


 
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gregarican
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      07-29-2005
Cam wrote:

> I thought this interface was just qtopia?


Indeed. Searching the RAA (which is back online now) I found Ruby-QTE
bindings, since the Zaurus is based on Qt Embedded. This should be a
great start for me. As for limited memory, the Zaurus can be expanded
with SD and CF cards. Since I ordered 1 GB of each type I should be
okay. Of course the CPU speed and whatnot will be a killer. I recall
using GCC and starting to nod off while programs compiled

 
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Brian Mitchell
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      07-29-2005
On 7/29/05, Cam <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
> On 7/29/05, (E-Mail Removed) <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
> > It's been done. See these search results:
> >
> > http://groups-beta.google.com/group/...ch?q=3Dzaurus&
> >
> > However, I think this platform has rather limited memory -- difficult
> > to do a "fat" Ruby install. And I think the GUI is fairly proprietary
> > (as with most PDAa) so I don't know if there are Ruby bindings
> > for it.

>=20
> I thought this interface was just qtopia? I think (could be wrong,
> i've never owned a zaurus), but i was under the impression that qt
> apps will work (so as long as you could get the ruby bindings ported
> to strongARM or whatever it is i think you couls just write w/ the qt
> ruby bindings)


There are other options too. Some people run a Debian ARM install off
of an SD card. There are also some advanced ROMs for other models.
Specifically the SL-C***[*] models that support running pdaXrom and
some even OpenBSD. I've compiled ruby on my SL-C760 (running pdaXrom)
many times and cross-compiled a few. It seems to work great.

Brian.


 
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gregarican
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      07-29-2005
Here's a couple of links I googled:

http://sourceforge.jp/projects/zaurus-ja/
http://takahr.dhis.portside.net/cgi-...uby%2FQte%3Aen

I guess I answered my own question Can't wait to give this a try. I
know a few years ago I really enjoyed running VNC, SSH, GCC, MySQL,
Apache, and other things on the Zaurus.

 
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Hal Fulton
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      07-29-2005
gregarican wrote:
> Here's a couple of links I googled:
>
> http://sourceforge.jp/projects/zaurus-ja/
> http://takahr.dhis.portside.net/cgi-...uby%2FQte%3Aen
>
> I guess I answered my own question Can't wait to give this a try. I
> know a few years ago I really enjoyed running VNC, SSH, GCC, MySQL,
> Apache, and other things on the Zaurus.


Well, keep us posted on what you find out.

I've never owned a Zaurus, but I've looked at it many times,
wondering if I could justify it to myself...

It would be a service to others if you kept notes on what it
took to get Ruby working well on the Zaurus... you could
write it up and put it on the wiki. Or heck, write an article
for somewhere.


Cheers,
Hal




 
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gregarican
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      08-01-2005
Hal Fulton wrote:

> It would be a service to others if you kept notes on what it
> took to get Ruby working well on the Zaurus...


Will do. The last time I used the Zaurus was back in '03 before I
discovered Ruby. Then I used the Zaurus for testing out features like
wireless VoIP phone calling, web browser client apps, remote server
admin working using SSH and VNC, and I recall even having a Windows
Terminal Server client on it. Most of the work was just seeing what all
I could put on the thing. It was cool using it as a mySQL server, an
Apache server, etc. and also compiling programs on it. The main thing I
recall about the SL-5500 was the battery life being horrid. That's why
I didn't recommend deploying it to our salesforce as a VoIP phone that
they could use for sales lookups. With wifi enabled I'd be lucky to get
an hour and a half out of it.

The newer SL-6000 model has wifi internally available and it appears to
have longer battery life from what I hear. Then Sharp also has Japanese
models like their C-7xx and C-8xx series that provide a VGA screen,
clamshell design, etc. and another model that even has an internal 4 GB
HDD. Of course these run over $800 US so for that price I could almost
get a Fujitsu P1000 subnotebook with a touch display. But for about
$150 for the Zaurus and another $20 for a battery extender I should
have a cheap toy to try to put to use again.

 
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gregarican
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      08-09-2005
Hal Fulton wrote:

> Well, keep us posted on what you find out.


I received my Zaurus SL-5500 last week and finally got around to
loading everything on it. After upgrading to the 3.10 Sharp ROM image I
now have a CF wifi card, SSH client/server, VNC client/server, Samba
server, and Ruby/QTE all going. Ruby is back in version 1.68 and the
QTE bindings are listed as version 0.4. Everything installed okay. I
have several examples in a TAR that I can use for getting things
started in terms of a GUI app on the Zaurus. My goal is to create an
entry level CRM app that our company can use to integrate with our core
POS/Inventory app. The integration would likely take place between SQL
Server databases so my next step will be getting Ruby's DBI bindings
active on the Zaurus. So far so good!

 
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