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Saturday, August 30, 2008
Teching around

I finally received my Neo Freerunner a couple of days ago, and boy, am I psyched. To be honest, as a phone, it totally sucks. Out of the box, the interface is not terribly intuitive, and the GUI runs pretty slowly. Furthermore, the battery lasts about a day when fully charged. However, it is a developer's toy after all, so one must make allowances.

So I've finally gotten a chance to fiddle with it some, and after poring through the wiki, I decided to try installing Debian on it. Yes, motherfuckers, Debian runs on a phone now. I'm actually doing it now as I type this post, because the installation script is running, and there's basically nothing you can do except wait while it does its work.

Anyway, since this is an entirely new platform to me, it's kinda scary. After all, the phone did cost some SG$600, and I haven't even heard of any hackers in Singapore who are playing around with it. So if I brick my phone, I'm pretty much on my own. I doubt anyone around these parts has a debugging board. With that frame of mind, I was reading through the wiki about flashing the phone, and it seems there are all sorts of problems which can occur. Happily, hackers from around the world have contributed solutions to the wiki. Stuff like "You may encounter... but if you... you should be fine." This is all very optimistic, and it seems to tell you that, hey, you're ok. We've got you covered. My perverse mind immediately wondered why these people were all so resourceful. I keep expecting to scroll down to the bottom of the page and seeing someone finally encounter a problem no one could solve. It would say, "If you do this and this followed by this, the phone shuts down. At this point, you may, if you have a sharp nose, you may detect a slight odour of something burning and... you're fucked."

That would be so darkly hilarious.

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