Mark Shuttleworth on Gadgets

Ubuntu’s front man, Mark Shuttleworth, wrote an interesting blog piece on gadgets and Linux. He stresses out that Linux should be used more on gadgets, however, I think he forgets that the PC side of any gadget is as important.

Today, one of my biggest frustrations with GNU/Linux (except that Beryl/Compiz doesn’t work on my Linux laptop with an ATi Radeon 9000 Mobility 64MB chip in it) is gadget-related support. There are several apps that supposedly do this or that for Nokia, Sony Ericsson, Palm or Windows gadgets, but none works well or is really robust or complete. If that was not enough, Gnome’s Bluetooth UIs are a hit and miss. BT doesn’t work properly on my Arch Linux system for example (can’t send a file or authenticate successfully with a new device using the latest Gnome BT apps), and all the Arch devs say is either “works for me”, or some of them don’t even bother to test.

Anyways, the point is, the desktop Linux needs some love regarding easy and painless gadget support (syncing, easy Bluetooth usage, UI wizards to make phones work as modems etc). Putting Linux itself on a gadget is only half the story in my opinion.

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