"Users will be able to read from sensors and control motors, LEDs, solenoids, slave boards, etc"
That will make it easier for people to start playing with electronics from the browser on their Raspberry Pi. Chrome has a serial API, which I think is only accessible to chrome extensions - https://developer.chrome.com/apps/serial. If Firefox OS on the Pi comes with no-limits unlike Chrome, then it should be fun to play with.
Looking forward to it ~!
If things like the ones described in the post are the goal (media server, low level hardware access), does that mean modifications to the core system? Is - and that's my real question - the lack of the mentioned features merely "not yet written" vs "impossible to do right now and blocking on core/system changes"?
There are multiple ideas on how to approach that as more and more systems in FxOS would benefit from it (background music player, IM, various synchronization services), and I expect us to come with first approach relatively soon.
by focusing on old, cheap and slow hardware, they're losing out on 3rd-party dev talent that would be interested to run FxOS on more modern hardware and letting the optimization for old devices trickle down later. i would love to easily run it on my BeagleBone Black and contribute apps i make back to their market.
By focusing on old, cheap, and slow hardware they ensure that the optimization will happen at all.
Here the thing, if you start focusing on the cutting edge, that's where development tends to stay. By starting with limited resources, it means that the software becomes more powerful as hardware gets cheaper.
if they had it on beaglebone black the whole world would ask "who the hell owns one of those".
The power of a full OS stack or a plain browser. Choices, choices....
Mozilla should really focus on Rust and the other projects. We all know what happened to WebOS and Symbian Web apps.
And given that I am yet to see any of them being sold in Europe shops or at any WiFi spot, I am not alone.