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HP Programming

HP Donates To WebOS's Major Hombrewing Group 77

Posted by timothy
from the doing-good-is-doing-well dept.
Kilrah_il writes "WebOS Internals Group is the central repository for all the homebrewing done on the WebOS platform, including apps, patches and kernels. Recently it became clear that server infrastructure would fall behind future progress in the WebOS world. 'So they asked HP's Phil McKinney, who has arranged to donate an HP Proliant DL385 2u server with 32 gigs of RAM and 8 terabytes of disk space... Notably, this is a straight-up donation, no strings attached — so WebOS Internals will remain how they always have: completely independent from the company whose OS they hack on.'"
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HP Donates To WebOS's Major Hombrewing Group

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  • Good PR (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Troll-Under-D'Bridge (1782952) on Sunday February 13, 2011 @09:33PM (#35195876) Journal
    Now this is the sort of good PR you'd love to hear from a major company. Not legal threats (even if it's a mere cease-and-desist) against people trying to squeeze more juice from a device which they presumably own.
    • Re:Good PR (Score:5, Insightful)

      by WrongSizeGlass (838941) on Sunday February 13, 2011 @09:38PM (#35195904)
      HP/WebOS is lagging behind Android, iOS and maybe even WinPhone7. Making sure that there's a reliable source for homebrewed apps, etc is a smart move. The homebrew efforts aren't going away so embrace them and let some of the creative & clever minds 'McGyver' your product into something that meets needs HP never thought of.
      • by sacherjj (7595)

        The Custom Kernel released for the first Pre on Sprint is the only thing that makes it usable for me. Memory caching and changing processor speed from 500 MHz to 720, 800 or 1 GHz. (I just run 720 MHz.) WebOS Internals stays completely White Hat and respects HP/Palm IP rights. The work closely together and do great things.

        People say that Android is open, but it isn't nearly as open as WebOS in what you can do. There is no jail breaking or anything like it. You enter dev mode and you have root. Period

        • I was following Meego for the last few months and it was starting to look like the best alternative to Android for those that are completely annoyed by the closed Android phones and are left with only the Nexus S (with unimpressive hardware) or Geeksphone (even more unimpressive hardware) that are actually open in the true sense of the word. I was very disappointed to hear that Nokia isn't pushing Meego full steam onto the best hardware they can make. I considered WebOS for a bit based on some of the com

          • by bwcbwc (601780)

            "my impression of the openness of system is that it is fully proprietary Linux and thus not an open system..."

            You may want to edit that. There is no such thing as "fully proprietary Linux". If it isn't GPL, it isn't Linux. It make look and function like Linux, but if it's proprietary, it's probably HP-UX or another Unix derivative developed under HPs Unix reseller's license.

            • 'linux' the kernel is, i'm sure, meeting HP's obligations under the GPL.
              I think what's meant is the userland running above, in the same way google can license dalvik & other stuff as apache.

          • I'm having more or less the same dilemna - Android seems to be becoming hackier and hackier, and I feel like we're back in the days of Windows Mobile. As long as HTC mainstream devices continue to be cracked wide open, we shouldn't have any problems, but there's got to be a better way... what I want to see is more devices designed for pure AOSP software, like the Nexus One/S - but multiple devices from all sorts of manufacturers. Big screens, small screens, hardware keyboards, touch-screen-only... let hardw

          • I'm a Maemo user since it's dawn and i'm starting to lean towards the WebOS more and more ... Most likely I will get the WebOS tablet instead of MeeGo or anything else ( only BB Playbook looks like a contender here )
          • by Wdomburg (141264)

            Actually, WebOS is overwhelmingly standard open source Linux component. Base system is a far more standard Linux kernel than Android uses and stock GNU glibc. The IPC is d-bus. System services run on top of either a JVM with the Apache Harmony classes in 1.x or on Node.js, which is powered by Google's V8 engine. Audio and media handling is PulseAudio and GStreamer. The official ROM includes a full suite of shell utilities with the busybox package, GNU binutils and even an ARM assembler.

            And, probabl

        • People say that Android is open, but it isn't nearly as open as WebOS in what you can do. There is no jail breaking or anything like it. You enter dev mode and you have root. Period.

          So, I guess a summary is:

          iPhone: jailbreak and be willing to be excommunicated from Apple, and you have root
          Droid: jailbreak, and you have root
          Pre: enter dev mode, and you have root
          N900: you have root

      • by gilesjuk (604902)

        WebOS can multi task and has more software than WP7. I'd say that puts it ahead of WP7.

      • by LWATCDR (28044)

        I don't think that WebOS is behind WP7. It is actually a really good OS and can multitask and has a lot of software and games for it. I would even go so far as to say it may have more good games than Android does. Which sucks since I have Android.
        WP7 doesn't even have Pandora and Angry Birds yet.

    • Indeed, I hope Motorola and Sony are paying attention.
    • True stuff. I don't understand why other companies don't do this.
    • by symbolset (646467) *
      Yes, it's good PR. They should do more of it.
  • by fuzzyfuzzyfungus (1223518) on Sunday February 13, 2011 @09:38PM (#35195902) Journal
    With the Palm acquisition, HP found themselves with a fairly nice mobile OS(with reasonable prospects of also doing Meego-esque tablet/netbook stuff); but one that was more or less dead last(even WinMo6.x has a legacy base).

    It seems reasonable, then, for them to cozy up to the platform homebrewers. They are the conveniently-already-self-selected group who has the greatest enthusiasm for the product. They will also be the ones who volunteer themselves to test dubiously stable new features, experiment with stuff, and so forth. A useful asset, particularly if one does not have a large group of developers who support your platform for financial reasons.

    Also, since(unlike Android or WP7), HP is currently the only distributor of WebOS devices, they have comparatively little to lose if homebrew ROMs circulate around. The only issue that might induce them to take a harder stance would be if commercial publishers start crying about piracy. We'll see if that happens...
    • by bwcbwc (601780)

      Or if the carriers insist on lockdown of WebOS phones -- which they will -- homebrew will be gone on those. At least the tablets and PCs should stay open.

    • Also, since(unlike Android or WP7), HP is currently the only distributor of WebOS devices, they have comparatively little to lose if homebrew ROMs circulate around. The only issue that might induce them to take a harder stance would be if commercial publishers start crying about piracy. We'll see if that happens...

      Uh... wha? Don't HP have just as much incentive as any other company for planned obsolescence? Wanting to sell new devices instead of having users upgrade their existing devices is a concept completely independent of the number of distributors... :(

      • In a (for them) perfect world, HP certainly would like customers to re-buy for every last incremental patch and/or no reason at all. However, this world is hardly a perfect one for them, and their real focus right now has to be on getting customers to buy. If they can successfully do that, they can still count on the appeal of new and shiny, relatively high attrition rates among mobile devices, and the phenomenon of "Hey, consumer, get a FREE*(terms and restrictions may apply, subject to new 2-year contract
  • by Seggybop (835060) on Sunday February 13, 2011 @09:39PM (#35195908)
    Seriously, HP tends to get a lot of crap, but this is pretty awesome. I hope they can keep this up.
    • Seriously, HP tends to get a lot of crap, but this is pretty awesome. I hope they can keep this up.

      I know my opinion of HP just went up.

      • by gmhowell (26755)

        Seriously, HP tends to get a lot of crap, but this is pretty awesome. I hope they can keep this up.

        I know my opinion of HP just went up.

        After the reign of Fiorina, was there anywhere else for it to go?

        • Seriously, HP tends to get a lot of crap, but this is pretty awesome. I hope they can keep this up.

          I know my opinion of HP just went up.

          After the reign of Fiorina, was there anywhere else for it to go?

          Any news on her 2016 Presidential run?

          • She's got my support. If she can do for the American economy what she did for HP, I won't have to worry about competing with American companies for a long time...
      • by mattia (28640)

        I know my opinion of HP just went up.

        Well, just don't get too excited, they just shafted all the non pre 2 owners telling them that no more OS upgrades are coming ( http://www.precentral.net/no-major-webos-ota-updates-pre-pre-plus-pixi-pixi-plus ) and that if they want, for example, the flash plugin they have been promised for about two years they will have to 'upgrade' to a new model.

        And at the moment the new model is running for about 500Eur and it will be worth 200 in six months when the palm pre 3 comes out .. but wait, you will be able to

  • ProLiant servers are a recipe for hardware failure. Every single one I have had the displeasure of working with over the course of 13 years has had a horrific, hardware failure of some kind. Anything in the "Compaq" side of HP should be avoided like the plague.
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward

      What he doesn't tell you is that he's a system recovery specialist, and only gets called when the machines get dead.

      It's like the Maytag Repairman, nobody ever calls him when things don't go wrong.

      • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

        by Kilrah_il (1692978)

        It's like our cable guy, my wife only calls him when thing go wrong... and I'm at work...

    • The funny thing is that your sig is the Konami code, which is used to enter developer mode in WebOS... which is the first part in homebrewing it.
      Coincidence? I should think not!

    • by Anonymous Coward

      kernel.org has been running on ProLiant gear for years. As far as I can tell, they've been quite happy...

  • (off topic) With "Hombrewing" and "J. C. Penny" [sic] on the front page, it seems that today's Slashdot is definitely not brought to you by the letter "E".

    Anyway... Kudos to HP!
    • (off topic) With "Hombrewing" and "J. C. Penny" [sic] on the front page, it seems that today's Slashdot is definitely not brought to you by the letter "E". Anyway... Kudos to HP!

      kyboar rror

  • This is just HP,, (Score:3, Informative)

    by HazMat 79 (1481233) on Sunday February 13, 2011 @10:35PM (#35196170)
    continuing the support that Palm already extended to the webOS community. I had a problem with google syncing my calendar when I first got my Pre Plus so I called the support line about that and yahoo messnger and Palm sent me to precentral for quote "all the IM, media players, and apps you cant find in the catalog" unquote. I am glad they are taking these steps. As fan of webOS I am glad to see this.
  • by El Fantasmo (1057616) on Sunday February 13, 2011 @10:47PM (#35196226)

    Glad to see the webOS internals guys getting some well deserved credit and recognition. Without them webOS would have been a waste of time.

    IF HP can do what they are trying, then Apple and Android may well be playing catch up in the not too distant future. HP is creating an OS environment that can go from desktop to laptop, to touch slates to cell phones without skipping a beat. Data and applications synchronized, seamlessly across devices. Scalable at an enterprise level with enterprise tools. No hodgepodge of Windows + iOS + Blackberry + Linux each with separate management tools. It's one stop shopping with a powerhouse like HP supporting it and for consumers, supporting the home brew community.

    The prospects are quite exciting. Only time will reveal the results.

  • It's only when you have nothing to lose that you realize that you have everything to gain.
  • This is something you'd expect from Palm. Palm has for sometime allowed people to do what they want. Here's the facts: a. if you're a hacker -- you're doing it for your own good mostly (because if something breaks you can fix it). b. Why spend money to prevent all this stuff for the small minority that do it? Is it worth all the r&d? c. good ideas come from small places. Things can be learned by what the hacking community is focused on. HINT here Apple. real mulitasking!!! all the jailbreakers w
  • They should have donated one of the iTanics they have lying around, I'm sure they are numerous

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