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A eulogy for Maemo and MeeGo (soundandcomplete.com)
37 points by arespredator on Oct 27, 2011 | hide | past | web | favorite | 23 comments

I managed to have a play with a friends N9 on the weekend. Frankly I wasn't expecting very much, but the N9 and MeeGo really impressed me. Everything responded quickly and easily to touch, the hardware was nice and the OS very slick. There were a number of innovative features I haven't seen in other smartphone OS's. For example, swiping from outside the screen is picked up by the OS to perform actions, such as task switching, while swipes the originate inside the screen are sent through to the running application. Thanks to this the N9 manages to get away with no OS level 'home' or 'back' buttons, either physical or on screen.

I came away from using the N9 feeling more than a little sad. As a consumer competition and innovation are good. As a programmer its great to see new ideas blooming and another platform that will further drive innovation.

We are all a little poorer for MeeGo being cancelled. For some reason the words of John Donne seem strangely appropriate: "any man's death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind, and therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for thee. "

I'm always astounded by these posts and reviews regarding MeeGo. Everything sounds like it was going well. I've never touched the OS but I'm well aware of the 'Burning Platform' memo by Elop, however, I do remember Elop saying it wouldn't be ready until 2014.

Whenever I see this OS and it reminds me of what was possible and could have been. I remain respectful of the innovations of Nokia but it saddens me to see them become a slave to another company, even if it does sport a quality OS.

It's not often that I get worked up over failed platforms but Nokia's botching of Maemo really makes me angry.

The N9 shows they had a viable, potentially world beating platform. Not only have they thrown it under a bus but, with its passing, so goes any hope of a true linux based smartphone (and accompanying ecosystem) ever achieving mass market exposure. It's tragic.

Android is Linux based.

As tincholio says, I added the word true on purpose. When you use a real linux stack, things like this are possible:



Note the parent said 'true linux based', probably referring to Maemo running a full Linux stack, instead of a non-standard kernel and a non-X, JVM-based environment.

I just got my N9 yesterday. It's kind of amazing how natural it is to use. While MeeGo is 'dead', Qt will stay alive and grow. Good thing is that MeeGo apps are really hardware-agnostic because they don't need any physical buttons which makes porting to different devices pretty straightforward. If the Qt ecosystem will live, it leaves door open for every kind of Linux smartphones in the future. Hopefully more Android developers would pick up Qt when there's more official way to target it.

Meego is just a marketing Buzzword. The N9 OS ist not a true MeeGo device anyway. Because MeeGo should be Moblin + Maemo. This Intel+Nokia adventure was a disaster. But what the N9 actually is, is Maemo + Qt. And Maemo is a mobile Debian. Nokia only said that they discontinue MeeGo. They did not say the discontinue the technolgoy behind it. They still invest und contribute a lot to Qt. And they say they are not porting it to Windows Phone.

I bet that we will see future Linux + Qt based phones from Nokia, with a different name, but similar to the N9 OS.

I hope so. And they have been stating it many times, but it's hard to imagine what they actually mean by it when all bets are on Windows phone. N9 OS seems to have all the attention of Nokia's head designers. Engadget just got interview with Peter Skillman on this subject http://www.engadget.com/2011/10/26/the-engadget-interview-pe...

Nokia spun off Qt as a separate project, "truly open source", and stopped owning it directly. To me, it slightly looks like they want to stop investing in Qt, too.

http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page=news_item&px=MTAwN... http://labs.qt.nokia.com/2011/10/21/the-qt-project-is-live/

This does not look like a discontinued project:


MeeGo was a huge chance for everyone. However that which was featured on the N9 wasn't so much the MeeGo experience as it was the Nokia experience. It's a shame, a huge shame as I would like to see a free and open mobile operating system stand up tall against the likes of Apple and the advertising company that is Google.

If there is anything Maemo was to be shot for, is that it continued to support the horrible disaster which is the X Windows System. That horrible, horrible excuse for a graphic system should be taken out and shot, the sooner the better (and no, I'm not bitter. Just a little bit tangy, perhaps.)

Yup, it is horrible and has some serious design flaws. But it can deal with low-level graphics, an in general hopeless and horrible activity based on numerous quirks and hacks -- and this makes a value overcoming most of its problems. Not to mention that there is a wide X ecosystem of libs, apps and know-how that is effectively smoothing its shortcomings.

I think there were plans to port Meego onto Wayland.

How is X11 a horrible disaster?


Yes, I'm sure the ancient UNIX haters handbook is totally relevant to the shortcomings of X11 at the end of 2011.

Edit: deleted comment refered to this http://www.art.net/~hopkins/Don/unix-haters/x-windows/disast...

I think that MeeGo may have some advantages over android, but I don't see how X is one of them. X is the single most broken piece of technology on any *nix box today.

This sadly also applies to Windows; Win Mobile was just Windows-on-the-phone, Win Phone is a crazy Silverlight slideshow. Thank you, Apple, for showing the market that dumb smartphones sell better than the real ones )-:

How is iPhone a dumb smartphone? The fact that it's not open (in any mean) doesn't mean it's dumb.

Does it have a shell? Can you write, compile and run a C app on it? Connect to OpenVPN without breaking warranty? Open few app windows side by side? Run another OS? I did all this on my windows mobile (very closed OS) devices, maemo would also have no problem with that.

Adios, AmigaOS.

Nice Maemorial.

(edit) Hacker News: Don't try any punny stuff

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