[Klug-general] Linux phones

Karl Lattimer karl at qdh.org.uk
Fri Jul 13 09:04:51 BST 2007

> Yes, which means it can do many things to a varying degree, but not
> necessarily do any of them well. Compare contrast: Leatherman,
> lindstroom wire cutters.

Another logical fallacy, why is it that you believe that just because
one thing is true, it infers that others must be?

So just because Linux _IS_ a general purpose OS, that means its not good
for a specific job. I think this image explains it well

Did you forget the fact that VXworks and Epoc and Symbian are general
purpose OS's?

> Sorry, thats me being an old fart again, epoc is now called symbian. Its
> worth noting that Psion are still in business, just not selling to the
> consumer. 
> As for the full API, that is both a feature and a bug. Depending on how
> you want to look at it.

Its a limitation of the operating system, not a feature or a bug. You
can't simply state that because it is missing lots and therefore doesn't
take up lots of space that that _can_ be a good thing. Which it isn't
its simply a limitation of the OS.

> > VXworks is even worse, a friend of mine who works with both ucLinux,
> > Linux 2.6 for embedded and VXworks daily does nothing but complain about
> > how many missing kernel level and user space API's there are. For
> > instance you'll find that there is no such thing as libc on VXworks,
> > they have a base library set, but it doesn't cut the mustard. VXworks is
> > crippleware essentially which means the developer needs to do a lot more
> > work in order to get something running.
> Again, feature or bug. If you are using VXworks on something, like say a
> robot or a highly embedded system, you probably don't want to be using a
> general libc  the performance (bare in mind many things are going to be
> real time) doesnt cut it. 

I'd like to see a libc implementation which doesn't work on RTLinux, as
a developer who works in C, I can assure you that glibc definately fits
within a class of library safe to use in real time operations. In fact
Linux is so good at real time processing using glibc the new Airbus A380
uses it as part of its control system (you know real time things, like
wings and engines that keep people alive).

Moreover, Epoc, VXworks and Symbian are not, and do no have real time
capability, or at least they have never been certified for use in
mission critical real time systems, like aircraft, which RTLinux is, and
IIRC only two other operating systems are QNX being one of them, and I
can't remember the other right now.

> Yes, an enormous library. Thats really useful on my embedded sytem with
> half a meg of ram.

How much does 4Mb of ram cost? How much does 4Mb of EEPROM cost? That is
a fallacious argument yet again.

Its akin to saying, well I need a big boot in my carriage because my
horse eats a lot of hay. The argument was valid once, however things
have changed since it was.

Also did I mention that glibc can be built for embedded systems? Oh yep
I did.

> > With all that said, 80% of new photocopiers run Linux, 80% of network
> > printers run linux, 80% of soho routers run linux. Thats the 80/20 rule
> > for you, with a larger developer community, a larger API stack, many
> > embedded device stack elements etc... I think that its a better bet for
> > Linux to run on all hardware than VXworks or Epoc and I think you'll
> > find that 8 out of 10 developer cats agree. 
> And how many desktop machines run windows? Just cos many people do it
> doesn't mean its the best way of doing it.

Erm another logical fallacy.

Microsoft have their software pre-installed on machines therefore
limiting consumer choice, as there isn't a great number of Linux TV ads
most people aren't aware of it as an option.

On the flip side, the developers of embedded systems have a choice, and
they generally choose wisely.

If you aren't comparing like for like how can that argument be valid?

It really is as bad as arguing with a creationist, arguing with you. You
cannot keep continuity to your argument without resorting to logical
fallacies in order to support your point of view.


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