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Cake day: Oct 28, 2020

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Yeah - the workplace often seems to be a prohibitive factor, sadly.

A recent survey done by OpenUK does suggest that companies are beginning to see the advantages of using open source apps, so there is hope, I guess.


This is probably not about e-waste at all though… It’s about the EU wanting Apple to adopt the fashionable proprietary USB-C port, and Apple being reluctant to do so.

Power play! lol


The Equality Effect

Greater economic equality makes us all less stupid, more tolerant, less fearful, and more satisfied with life.

https://inequality.org/research/equality-effect/


I applaud the concern for the environment, and the attempt to try to reduce needless e-waste. However, I think there’s some muddled thinking here.

First of all: the issue is about charging a device. For that, what is required is a charger.

Secondly: Obviously USB-C and lightening cables provide a charging function, but also provide a way to exchange data, which is beyond the purview of the consumer waste problem.

So - why doesn’t the EU simply mandate that:

  • Phones and chargers should be sold separately, and that
  • Any chargers sold in the EU must have a design1 such that the cable connection can be easily detached?

This would ensure that only chargers that were needed were purchased, and that the consumer could change cables as they wore out, or as they changed protocol.

1 Obviously, they’d need to set some standards around what a charger ought to be. (And perhaps look to the work that was done several years ago, regarding safety, with the Asmo charger proposal.)


I’m really looking for a powerful Linux phone for convergence too… And I have to say, whilst I applaud this update, 4GB still seems a bit anaemic for that purpose.


I disagree with the idea that Linux phones are not ready for mass adoption - I think they are ready, so long as the user doesn’t expect to have certain apps. As Pine64 recently put it, “If you depend on proprietary mainstream mobile messenger applications, banking applications, use loyalty or travel apps, consume DRM media, or play mobile video games on your fruit or Android smartphone, then the PinePhone Pro is likely not for you.”

Of course, you’re absolutely right to say that Fairphones are designed to be repairable and upgradeable… and for the Fairphone 3 & 3+ that includes the pcb, which is detachable… So the thing Fairphone ought to have done, imho, is produced a new, higher spec., pcb, rather than producing a whole new design.

I suspect that in the end, the Fairphone consumer will behave like consumers of other brands, and desire to have the latest design. And I suspect that Fairphone is banking on that for sales. Their market is niche, and their customer base is relatively small. Of course, I’d be happy if I were wrong about that.


I find myself having less respect for Fairphone now than I used to have.

So okay… they’re trying to source their components as ethically as possible, and that’s a huge thing for me. BUT it seems to me that they’re also doing the same thing as every other phone manufacturer : getting their customers to keep replacing their devices. And this is simply not ethical - indeed it’s wasteful.

I would’ve liked to have seen Fairphone produce a Linux phone or, better still, collaborate with Pine64. I would’ve liked to have seen better integration with UBports too. But no - they’ve been far too conservative on that.

I would have been delighted if they had brought out an ethical, repairable / modular laptop like MNT’s or Framework’s recent efforts. Thus diversifying their product range.

And, by the way, they’re not (as they’d like us to think) the only company to make a repairable device - consumers might also like to consider the Shiftphone.


All 12 sold within 2 days; suggests to me that there is keen developer interest.

I wonder if they’ll make another small batch available?



I couldn’t agree with you more!

And actually, a simple analogue mixing desk is a really good place to start.


Yeah! The reason they’re so expensive at the moment, is that the chips aren’t being mass produced.

These boards are intended for software developers really - and every one of them that gets their mits on one to rebase apps, makes RISC-V more compelling. Computing is always a tandem of hardware and software.

But this is the setup that demonstrated AOSP at the end of last year - so it also serves as a nudge to phone makers that RISC-V is at APU level.

Plus, the XuanTie chips are open source, I think : Another notable thing for me.


Download Ardour1: https://ardour.org/

Grab

and away you go.

The techniques and skills you develop as a sound engineer go beyond just learning a software interface.

1 Audacity seems to have gone out of favour with some, following their business practice.


:) Here's another RV SBC available for pre-order on Alibaba

Alibaba T-head RVB-ICE Development Board, Dual-core XuanTie C910 RISC-V 64GC, 1.2GHz - US $399.00 …


Fwiw The GNOME Calendar app has served me well. It has syncing capabilities.

The calendar that comes with Ubuntu Touch is also very good - I don’t know whether it’s available to download to other platforms though.

And there used to be a really nice ToDo / calendar combo, called NitroTasks… but I don’t know it’s status any more.


I guess they ought to be obliged to give a full refund, yes.


I use a neat little snap called Jotit, which syncs to my Nextcloud.

I also keep a well-curated long list of browser bookmarks.


I do think Apple have a point. I know it sounds simplistic, but in my mind I don’t get past - their turf : their rules.

If people use a proprietary system; they can’t expect anything other than a closed down environment, can they?

It’s not as if there aren’t alternatives : if Apple can’t or won’t provide something you want, then switch systems.


I realise that I’m an idealist, but I start from the perspective of basic human rights : Everyone has the right to food, clothing, housing, warmth, etc. Surely our world’s managers, by agreeing to be a part of the UN, have a duty to the UN’s convention on human rights?

But what’s the cost of all that?

And does the administration bill from giving to some and not all outweigh just giving a payment to everybody?

And would the resulting inflation make it all impossible anyway?

I don’t know the answer to any of this : I’m not an economist.

UBI must have a profound affect on the economy though…


I’ve used Matrix for several years now - and prefer it to Telegram which requires more metadata. (I think Signal does too, but I haven’t used that)

I am interested in trying to set up my own XMPP server though - I think that’s easier than Matrix, and less resource-intensive.



@wintermute Thank you for posting this news. I am interested to hear what the EU decides, and to see how that affects things.

My guess is that if one of the big markets rejects the idea, then Nvidia won’t pursue the deal… The UK have already hinted that they are a bit sniffy about it, but then would the population be prepared to forego their beloved smartphones? My guess is; not.

Undoubtedly development around RISC-V has been hastened by the uncertainty surrounding the potential acquisition. I wonder whether the ISA is mature enough for OEMs to realise that they no longer need ARM either way? Perhaps when some of the extensions are ratified…