Maemo 5 & N900 get community OS updates
One of your editors, Andrew Flegg, posted - on behalf of the Maemo Community Council and Mohammad Abu-Garbeyyeh - the announcement of the Fremantle Community SSU project. Seamless Software Update (SSU), is the term Nokia used to brand the over-the-air updates of Maemo. The Community SSU (CSSU) is being developed by the Maemo community, for the Maemo community. It aims to deliver fixes which can't be delivered easily through Extras, such as core Maemo packages. It won't, however, bundle software which can be installed through the Extras repositories. At this stage, the project is hoping to gain traction with developers (in particular Maemo engineers who might want to focus on things they couldn't previously), testers and those willing to help organise and manage the project. Longer term, it's hoped it will include many fixes and enhancements suitable for all N900 users.
With Nokia moving on to concentrate on MeeGo, this mechanism provides a vital continuation of the distribution of fixes and enhancements. Already, in the past two days, a large number of contributions have been made; with testing, bug reporting and community-driven fixes to the desktop; and enhancements to Modest.
MWKN is a year old!
MWKN launched on Monday, 1st Feburary 2010. What a year: it started when Maemo was the most popular it'd ever been, and people were having keeping track of all the different media (and that's just within the maemo.org community). Just looking over the contents of the last year (dates reflect MWKN issues, not calendar months ;-)):
* February: Firefox Mobile; No clarity on Maemo 6 for N900; N900s all over London; Call audio drop-outs; Testing Squad; Official Qt support; 3D-accelerated Mer; MeeGo announced.
* March: First complexities of Qt evolution: ABI break in PR1.2 Extras; Ovi Store for Maemo paid apps cock-ups; Ronan MacLaverty announced as Developer Advocate; Diablo Community SSU; Qt Creator 2.0 alpha; MeeGo TSG holds first public meeting; MeeGo Community Council suggested; MeeGo branding under-fire; Fourth Maemo Community Council elected.
* April: MeeGo Day One; MeeGo N8x0 hardware adaptation; N900 overclocking; forum.meego.com launches; Chromium ported to Maemo; Giving apps a CLI-style icon if no user-facing GUI; Where does the MeeGo community live? Who's in it?; Cheap O2 Jogglers show off Mer; Getting the autobuilder to give accurate cross-SDK dependencies; N900 live wallpaper; UX weeks kick off; MeeGo Repository Working Group?.
* May: Nokia Qt SDK beta; PR1.2 leaked; super-testers introduced; Google Summer of Code; PR 1.2 released; maemo.org brainstorm; MeeGo 1.0 released; No end-user MeeGo (or Harmattan) for N900 from Nokia.
* June: Linaro announced; senior Maemo community members express concern about openness; N9 hardware leak?; Nokia respond to forced MyNokia subscription in PR1.2; MeeGo Handset "Day One".
* July: Nokia Qt SDK 1.0 released; delays fixing maemo.org SSL certs; community-organised Maemo Coding Competition.
* August: N900s still losing USB ports; Council asks for Python apps in Ovi; talk.maemo.org code of conduct; KISStester; Status of Maemo licensing change request queue?; Promise of Maemo 5 Community SSU; More images of N9 surface; Diablo Community SSU stable.
* September: Nokia CEO changes; Maemo Community Council election; MeeGo Specification discussion and debate; Anssi Vanjoki resigns from Nokia; Peter Skillman joins Nokia from Palm; Calling All Innovators winners announced; MeeGo respin controversy.
* October: Ari Jaaksi joins Palm from Nokia ; Nokia re-affirms MeeGo announcement "by end-of-the-year"; Flash 10.1 available to some (but pointless); MeeGo Conference schedule announced; MeeGo on N900 makes phone calls; PR1.3 "almost ready"; preenv for running Palm Pre games on Maemo.
* November: PR1.3 released; MeeGo 1.1 released; Nokia simplifies developer story (finally); Playing DVDs on N900, directly; MeeGo Conference in Dublin; MeeGo Community OBS live.
* January: N900 and MeeGo win in Linux Journal Readers' Choice awards; N900 Amazon's most-given gift phone; MeeGo Coding Competition in the works; Gtk+ on MeeGo Handset team selected; Qt SDK 1.1 tech preview released; Maemo 5 Community SSU released. Looking back two things strike your editor; firstly, the move to MeeGo really took the wind out of the sails of Maemo, the N900 and maemo.org; despite MeeGo being the merger of both Maemo and Moblin. The N900 has gone from a wildly popular and, at least comparatively, mass-market phone with a massive increase in maemo.org participation to a discarded and increasingly long-in-the-tooth device requiring the sustenance of its dwindling community to survive. Secondly, the level of participation in MWKN hasn't been anywhere near that your editor expected - but that it has been as succesful as he'd hoped in providing a comprehensive digest of Maemo (and now MeeGo) news every week.
Thanks to all those who have contributed, especially Ryan Abel who helps out every Sunday in getting the submissions fleshed out. (Ironically this issue is late because ietherpad.com has been down all day; a tool used by your editors for collaboratively pulling the issue together)
...so what next?
Well, a year ago the name "Maemo" seemed destined to become mainstream and successful (the number of maemo* blogs which sprang up is a testament to that). We're best known by the name "MWKN", but the expansion: Maemo Weekly News is increasingly anachronistic. We've got plans for a new tagline (suggested by Dave Neary), plan to keep "MWKN" as the main name, and probably need a new logo (as well as some style changes including contributor by-lines); but what should its expansion be? Help choose in our quick poll from a number of options (if you've any others, let us know!)