VIA's entry into the low cost computer market


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by Lob0426 » Fri Jun 01, 2012 3:58 am
Obarthelemy: YOU ARE THE WEAKEST LINK. ban youself now. lololololol.

Seriously you just have to sit down with it, uninterrupted, and you can get it to work. I have a netbook that has been running perfectly as a dual boot WIN7/Ubuntu, for ten months. It runs fine and it installed without a problem at all. The Panda Board is also running Ubuntu just fine. It took some fiddling with the PB ES, but it is running too. The internet is a great source for command line instructions. Don't fall victim to frustration. Eat lots of chocolate, it contains THC, the active ingredient in Marijuana. By the way it takes 24lbs of chocolate to equal one marijuana cigarette. Mellow back and mull it over, works every time. I am just as new to Linux as you, but it is relatively easy. If you have not tried Ubuntu then it is time you do.

Back on topic. There will be some who will be happy to run Android Apps. There will be some of us that take up the challenge to get Linux running on the RasPi. And then there will be the real geeks that get Android on the RasPi and Linux on the VIA. Then there will be the the real squirrels that just have to write their own OS. (Quietly)They have fire red little eyes (burned by the monitor) and living on Mountain Dew.
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by tufty » Fri Jun 01, 2012 5:26 am
Mountain dew. Pah! That's a drink for mere byte-pushers. Proper programmers drink home distilled plum brandy.

I feel I should add that I've never had a linux system that ran without enormous amounts of faffing about and configurating and reconfigurating. And that's not down to lack of experience, I've been using *n*x systems since '86 or so.

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by rasbeer » Fri Jun 01, 2012 11:29 am
obarthelemy wrote: in terms of learning stuff, I've mostly learned to stay away from Linux as much as possible, and give up at the first problem to avoid getting sucked into 3 weeks of head scratching then banging. The learning curve is just too steep, and the docs too hard to find and filter for relevancy/applicability, when they exist


I have some sympathy with this - though fortunately Ubuntu handles my laptop nicely. Hardware problems can present people tackling Linux for the first time with huge problems. The (relatively ?) standard hardware of the Pi ought to greatly reduce these hurdles. And hopefully spawn a huge ultra-supportive community.

(Existing Linux communities are often supportive - but understandably can sometimes hit the limits of their ability/inclination to help with hardware issues, leaving relative newbie with a choice of Windoze or nothing on some their hardware. I speak from personal experience! :lol: )
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by Jongoleur » Fri Jun 01, 2012 2:28 pm
tufty wrote:Proper programmers drink home distilled plum brandy.
Simon


Which explains "off by 1" errors, stack overflows and the like..... 8-)

Real programmers do it in microcode, or so I'm told, with prodigious quantities of high-caffine beverages. Anything that comes out of a can doesn't count.

As for the VIA, I'll be interested to see what price it actually comes out at. If its cheap, I'll probably get one as a general toy. Put it in a cheap mini-ITX case and it should be tidy enough to join the stack under the TV...
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by Lob0426 » Fri Jun 01, 2012 3:51 pm
I don't know, maybe those years of MS-DOS and loading drivers in Win3.0, 3.1, 3.11, 95, 98, 2000 have stood me in good stead. All of that plus some programming in basic, although all of that is pretty rusty from 30 of disuse. Sure I bang my head sometimes but has not been all that hard. The biggest problem is that Linux just seems to be a OS by geeks from geeks. Ubuntu seems to have smoothed some of this out. Their software center really does not work that well. I find that the synaptic package manager does a much better job. Make sure you add-on (debconf?) the piece to help with broken packages. Software center seems to install synaptics well enough. The real learning experience is at the command line. I have looked up some command lines that are just...........stupid. The first line in the setup of OMAP extras for example

sudo sed --in-place=.bak -e 's/^# \(deb.*\)/\1/' /etc/apt/sources.list

So what the ---- is all that .bak is to create a backup of sources.list and that is as far as I have got at figuring this particular command line code out.

But then I just looked up this:
http://sudobash.net/tag/sed/

So it is a bash command and part of that is to replace a line in the file sources.list. So the info is out there if you can give the right search phrases.

If the VIA really comes out at $49 I will get one to mess with. Let's see comes out in July. Someone will definitely try to port a version of Linux to it. So about winter, when I will have more time, it can be a winter project. A RasPi and a Panda Board are enough for projects right now. And I would like to get back to the NerdKit also. Even retired only gives you so much time.
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by Jongoleur » Fri Jun 01, 2012 10:08 pm
Lob0426 wrote:I don't know, maybe those years of MS-DOS and loading drivers in Win3.0, 3.1, 3.11, 95, 98, 2000 have stood me in good stead. All of that plus some programming in basic, although all of that is pretty rusty from 30 of disuse. Sure I bang my head sometimes but has not been all that hard. The biggest problem is that Linux just seems to be a OS by geeks from geeks. Ubuntu seems to have smoothed some of this out. Their software center really does not work that well. I find that the synaptic package manager does a much better job. Make sure you add-on (debconf?) the piece to help with broken packages. Software center seems to install synaptics well enough. The real learning experience is at the command line. I have looked up some command lines that are just...........stupid. The first line in the setup of OMAP extras for example

sudo sed --in-place=.bak -e 's/^# \(deb.*\)/\1/' /etc/apt/sources.list

So what the ---- is all that .bak is to create a backup of sources.list and that is as far as I have got at figuring this particular command line code out.

But then I just looked up this:
http://sudobash.net/tag/sed/

So it is a bash command and part of that is to replace a line in the file sources.list. So the info is out there if you can give the right search phrases.

If the VIA really comes out at $49 I will get one to mess with. Let's see comes out in July. Someone will definitely try to port a version of Linux to it. So about winter, when I will have more time, it can be a winter project. A RasPi and a Panda Board are enough for projects right now. And I would like to get back to the NerdKit also. Even retired only gives you so much time.


Yeah - a command line invoking sed (stream editor) to automatically edit sources.list. Its stuff for bearded sandal wearing geeks, the sort who despise people who use visual editors. Remember ed in MSDOS? That was a sort of cousin to the command line counterpart of sed. Which was called ed. Which is why we use things like nano nowadays! :)
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by johnbeetem » Fri Jun 01, 2012 10:41 pm
Jongoleur wrote:Yeah - a command line invoking sed (stream editor) to automatically edit sources.list. Its stuff for bearded sandal wearing geeks, the sort who despise people who use visual editors. Remember ed in MSDOS? That was a sort of cousin to the command line counterpart of sed. Which was called ed. Which is why we use things like nano nowadays! :)

Speaking as a bearded geek, who prefers WYSIWGY editors, I don't remember "ed" in MS-DOS. I remember "edlin", which IMO was a terrible editor. I remember "ed" from Unix in 1977. It's a terrific editor for 10 CPS teletypes. Documentation is just 4 pages, two of which describe regular expressions. I occasionally use "ed" if I'm on an unfamiliar GNU/Linux system and want to write a quick "hello, world". I also use "sed" on occasion -- it's a great tool for filtering textual outputs of programs.

I like this old Unix quote:

Never use C if you can use awk.
Never use awk if you can use sed.
Never use sed if you can use tr.
Never use tr if you can use cat.
Avoid using cat whenever possible.
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by Lob0426 » Sat Jun 02, 2012 2:28 am
Yeah I remember edlin. When notepad came with windows it ruled the world. I didn't come up with that sed line I just typed it in.

Johnbeetem: remember to wear socks with those sandals, and not shorty sock either!

I am always running into someone that has an old computer around. those are perfect for working with Linux. You do not have to risk wiping out your main system and they can make a good file/game server.
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by Jongoleur » Sat Jun 02, 2012 8:00 am
johnbeetem wrote:Speaking as a bearded geek, who prefers WYSIWGY editors, I don't remember "ed" in MS-DOS. I remember "edlin", which IMO was a terrible editor. I remember "ed" from Unix in 1977. It's a terrific editor for 10 CPS teletypes. Documentation is just 4 pages, two of which describe regular expressions. I occasionally use "ed" if I'm on an unfamiliar GNU/Linux system and want to write a quick "hello, world". I also use "sed" on occasion -- it's a great tool for filtering textual outputs of programs.



ed/edlin....

You're right, of course. :-) I was getting confused - the line editor in CP/M is called ed. MSDOS called it edlin to hide the fact that it was pinched from CP/M, where, given the limited resources available, it is a reasonable solution. For some reason (to appease unix users perhaps?) there used to be a set of unix-like tools that could be run on MSDOS. I was probably thinking of that... As for sed, you've got the beard, use it all you like! ;)
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by grumpyoldgit » Sat Jun 02, 2012 8:32 am
I never used edlin. It was an awful piece of software. I used Edit from Dos 5 onwards but I certainly used something similar before that. I suspect it was something that came free on a magazine. If I still had a 5 1/4" floppy drive I could have a look at that pile of floppies up in the roof and tell you! I almost cried when I took my Amstrad 1512 up to the tip to be recycled. Apart from anything else, it cost £500 when £500 was worth £500.
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by tufty » Sat Jun 02, 2012 9:36 am
Jongoleur wrote:I was getting confused - the line editor in CP/M is called ed.

Unix, too.
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by Jongoleur » Sat Jun 02, 2012 11:48 am
tufty wrote:
Jongoleur wrote:I was getting confused - the line editor in CP/M is called ed.

Unix, too.


Which is where this discursion on editors started - about 7 posts up.. Well, ok it was sed, but I dragged ed in too..... :-)
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by Lob0426 » Sat Jun 02, 2012 3:42 pm
I have been using gedit in Linux, nano keeps opening empty even though I tell it where the file is. I do have to say I have been cheating and using gksu gedit from alt+F2. Also have used it from terminal window with sudo.
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by rustybikes » Thu Jun 07, 2012 7:14 pm
Bah. All this talk about gedit, nano, ed/edlin, etc. - and not one mention of vi yet? Unthinkable. VI is, after all, the correct editor. What is wrong with you people? ;)

On topic: My view is that VIA's entry is very interesting, but probably fits a different market than the RPi. My impression of VIA is that it's a cheap, embedded-like system that can be used to play games (Angry Birds is even mentioned in the article/screenshots) or videos or.. whatever end-user tasks that can tolerate being on a lower-spec system like that. The RPi, on the other hand, is more of an educational device - to provide a safe/distraction-free place to learn coding and platform architecture from a more intimate perspective.

In other words, I expect the APC unit to be more targeted to folks who want a cheap computer, not so much for any greater purpose. That said, I've added my email to the notification list; I intend to get one just to play around with. I'm guessing that some of what I learn on RPi will be transferrable, so that'll be a bonus. I'm also in the camp of wanting to see a "full" Linux distro for the APC (Android on RPi is interesting too).

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by johnbeetem » Thu Jun 07, 2012 8:02 pm
rustybikes wrote:Bah. All this talk about gedit, nano, ed/edlin, etc. - and not one mention of vi yet? Unthinkable. VI is, after all, the correct editor. What is wrong with you people?

OK, I'll mention vi. I had to use it a lot at one time, and it never, ever felt natural to me. Typically, when I tried to edit a file vi would screw it up rather than help me improve it. I'm not a fan of emacs either. I typed in my dissertation using emacs, and that was enough.

There is controversy regarding how to pronounce vi. Some say it should be pronounced as a single syllable rhyming with "die". Others say it should be produced as two syllables, "vee aye". I pronounce it "vee'-ah", after the title character in my favorite horror movie "Viy" (1967), a Russian movie based on a story by Gogol. Great movie, with special effects by Russian FX wizard Aleksandr Ptushko. In the movie, "Viy" is a hideous, soul-sucking demon, which matches my experience with vi. You don't run vi, you summon it.

Amusing coincidence that "Viy" is pronounced almost the same as VIA technologies.
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by dave j » Thu Jun 07, 2012 8:26 pm
johnbeetem wrote:
rustybikes wrote:Bah. All this talk about gedit, nano, ed/edlin, etc. - and not one mention of vi yet? Unthinkable. VI is, after all, the correct editor. What is wrong with you people?

OK, I'll mention vi. I had to use it a lot at one time, and it never, ever felt natural to me. Typically, when I tried to edit a file vi would screw it up rather than help me improve it. I'm not a fan of emacs either. I typed in my dissertation using emacs, and that was enough.

There is controversy regarding how to pronounce vi. Some say it should be pronounced as a single syllable rhyming with "die". Others say it should be produced as two syllables, "vee aye". I pronounce it "vee'-ah", after the title character in my favorite horror movie "Viy" (1967), a Russian movie based on a story by Gogol. Great movie, with special effects by Russian FX wizard Aleksandr Ptushko. In the movie, "Viy" is a hideous, soul-sucking demon, which matches my experience with vi. You don't run vi, you summon it.

You have to remember vi's origins as a visual line editor. People just seem to miss the LE off the abbreviation. ;)
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by tufty » Fri Jun 08, 2012 7:40 am
The "Scheme 9 from Empty Space" interpreter used to include a vi-styled editor.

"A Recursive Scheme Editor".

Oh Yes.
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by walney » Fri Jun 08, 2012 10:16 am
I'll be gobsmacked if this even arrives this year. My experience of Via is that things have an awful habit of getting delayed. This happened with many of the Mini-ITX boards, the Nano-ITX boards and the Pico-ITX boards.

They seem to be very good at getting the prototypes up and running, then... nothing.
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by Max » Mon Jun 11, 2012 3:22 pm
Can order now.
Seems the profit is in the s&h?

==
Item total $49
Shipping and handling $38
==
by Lob0426 » Mon Jun 11, 2012 4:26 pm
Yep; $38 shipping to America. Just got my interest E-mail also. Must be coming from Taiwan. Pretty expensive shipping. Thing must weight what? 5 to 6oz. Pound and half in the box? It is nice that it tells you that, right up front rather than at the end of ordering though. Hmm have to think on this one!
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by Golem » Mon Jun 11, 2012 6:57 pm
Mine is ordered and I will happily pay for the shipping. I have cancelled my order for the RPi (not because of VIA’s device) and decided to let it mature a little before reconsidering.
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by welshblob » Mon Jun 11, 2012 7:27 pm
Golem wrote:Mine is ordered and I will happily pay for the shipping. I have cancelled my order for the RPi (not because of VIA’s device) and decided to let it mature a little before reconsidering.


Don't you think via's device will need to mature a bit as well?

I've decided not to purchase a via device due to the $38 shipping charge. I may reconsider if they hit a UK distributor with cheaper shipping.

TBH I may as well get one of those all winner mele stb's if they want to be pay that money.

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by Golem » Mon Jun 11, 2012 8:27 pm
I feel good about the company and I want to be an early adopter with this product. I don’t mind the shipping if it gets here fast once released in July or August. I found APC to be professional overall and ordering was a breeze.
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by emercer » Mon Jun 11, 2012 8:44 pm
Shipping is a bitch. My Pi quickly climbed to $109 because of RS' lousy shipping options.

I had to refuse delivery and weep as I watched it go.
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by Lob0426 » Mon Jun 11, 2012 8:55 pm
I will wait until the VIA is actually shipping. I already wiated long enough to get a RasPi. finally got it last friday. Of course I had been waiting for that since december when it was rumored to be released. I posted my projects for it in August 2011 and it changed spec s several times. So again I will wait for the VIA to actually be available, possibly by a U.S distributor. 40% of the price for shipping just too high.
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