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RIM shows PlayBook tablet, will not undercut iPad in price - Page 2

post #41 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by dreyfus2 View Post

None and nothing. Because this assumption is based on the unproven premise that iOS contains things it does not need. It is not OS X, it is much lighter (e.g. lacks tons of drivers and interfaces).

iOS is in fact OS X, it is NOT Mac OS X. Operating systems are not defined by drivers or interfaces, but rather architecture. It is a lot smaller in footprint, because all the hardware support can be trimmed down to just several components and remain fixed.
Disclaimer: The things I say are merely my own personal opinion and may or may not be based on facts. At certain points in any discussion, sarcasm may ensue.
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Disclaimer: The things I say are merely my own personal opinion and may or may not be based on facts. At certain points in any discussion, sarcasm may ensue.
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post #42 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by samab View Post

QNX implements actionscript classes natively in C/C++.

Yes, the Adobe class libraries are native code but application ui code is run as singly threaded actionscript in Air. Meh.

Arguably this isn't any worse than Silverlight for WP7 but MS controls both the OS and ui engine. Half of BlackBerry's framework is owned by Adobe. I expect this makes them far less agile than Apple, Google and Microsoft all of which own all pieces of the puzzle.
post #43 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by samab View Post

We are talking about resource constraint environment with limited RAM and CPU speed. A couple of megabytes saved here and there may not mean much on the desktop, but on a cell phone that may be a lot.

A dual core 1Ghz cell phone with 512MB+ of RAM and gig of storage? Are you kidding? For an RTOS developer that's not constrained at all. In constrained environments we don't even write C++ but C. No helpful abstraction layers but code close to the metal.

The bottom line is that Apple, Google and Microsoft smartphone operating systems are richer in capability than the QNX solution but actually CAN run on single core ARMs...whereas RIM states your "superior" RTOS based smartphone OS cannot run until they have a dual core A9 based BB phone.

So whatever efficiency advantages that QNX brought to the table is completely downed by using Adobe code as part of the application framework.
post #44 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by samab View Post

The demos are showing a promising start so far.

Well, you said do what Palm did.
post #45 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dick Applebaum View Post

I understand the advantages of a RTOS... what I don't understand is what user benefits it will bring to a smart phone or even today's tablets.

Please amplify.

Nothing. There are no hard real time requirements for user application processing. Any RT requirements are handled by the RTOS in the baseband processor.

It's not like you're running any real time guidance and navigation apps on your iphone that have hard 50 ms timing requirements that must be met or your missile flies off course...
post #46 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by nht View Post

Arguably this isn't any worse than Silverlight for WP7 but MS controls both the OS and ui engine. Half of BlackBerry's framework is owned by Adobe. I expect this makes them far less agile than Apple, Google and Microsoft all of which own all pieces of the puzzle.

You mean putting all eggs in the basket of a company that promises a mobile version of their toy environment since almost three years without ever getting there (their actual development effort can be summarized as: waiting for the hardware to get powerful enough to run our junk as is)... is not a good idea

Gosh, people are demanding here
post #47 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by samab View Post

Users benefit from having a system that has a smaller footprint from the start.

That's why the praybook needs a cortex a9 and a gig of ram.
post #48 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by nht View Post

A dual core 1Ghz cell phone with 512MB+ of RAM and gig of storage? Are you kidding? For an RTOS developer that's not constrained at all. In constrained environments we don't even write C++ but C. No helpful abstraction layers but code close to the metal.

The bottom line is that Apple, Google and Microsoft smartphone operating systems are richer in capability than the QNX solution but actually CAN run on single core ARMs...whereas RIM states your "superior" RTOS based smartphone OS cannot run until they have a dual core A9 based BB phone.

So whatever efficiency advantages that QNX brought to the table is completely downed by using Adobe code as part of the application framework.

Well said - RIM tying their destiny to adobe's software is moronic.

If they should learn anything from apple it's the importance of controlling the entire software stack.
post #49 of 89
In co-CEO-speak: It means we have lots of categories and are just beginning????
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post #50 of 89
so ... RIM is promising a lot of very fast work. but if they can't meet their own announced schedule soon, it is going to really hurt them. in this hyper competitive market they can't get away with stringing everyone along thru the next year with just bits and pieces of software and a half-done new PlayBook for sale. didn't they learn that from the big BB Storm flop?
post #51 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by dreyfus2 View Post

There is zero difference between a RTOS and an non-realtime OS on a tablet or phone, if the regular OS has been slimmed down to only support the functionality required on a device.

This is untrue. A RTOS is defined as a OS that can provide deterministic timing. There are fast RTOS and slow ones. A general purpose OS can outperform a slower RTOS.

The performance of an RTOS is generally measured by it's worst case task response time...not best case or even average case throughput. This is because you typically won't use an RTOS unless you have a hard Real Time requirement that must be met and you analyze performance based on that worst case time (using RMA).

So the difference is an RTOS will guarantee that a task will happen within it worst case time including all preemption latency, context switch time, yada yada yada.

Quote:
There is also no general speed advantage (with e.g. processing messages) when comparing a process on a RTOS with one scheduled to run with the highest priority under a regular OS.

This depends on how the scheduler is designed. Different scheduler algorithms produce different results for when processes get preempted. Many RTOS will starve lower priority processes to insure critical tasks meet their time deadline. Most GP OS have some kind of fairer scheduler.

Quote:
The only real benefit (a theoretical one and one that does not affect the user at all) is that RTOSs can switch off unneeded parts of themselves dynamically, e.g. you could deploy the very same version of an OS to different devices with different capabilities and the system could optimize itself for each of them. Apple has to do this the hard way by providing different downloads for different devices.

Ah...no. I wish this was a basic characteristic of an RTOS because I spent too many late nights helping hand tune VxWorks kernels in a past life. It was seriously un-fun and I wasn't the poor schmuck actually assigned to do this but the app developer making sure that something critical didn't get hosed with a specific configuration change to improve performance.
post #52 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by nht View Post

A dual core 1Ghz cell phone with 512MB+ of RAM and gig of storage? Are you kidding? For an RTOS developer that's not constrained at all. In constrained environments we don't even write C++ but C. No helpful abstraction layers but code close to the metal.

The bottom line is that Apple, Google and Microsoft smartphone operating systems are richer in capability than the QNX solution but actually CAN run on single core ARMs...whereas RIM states your "superior" RTOS based smartphone OS cannot run until they have a dual core A9 based BB phone.

So whatever efficiency advantages that QNX brought to the table is completely downed by using Adobe code as part of the application framework.

That's like saying 512kb is enough.

It's not like they can't run it on single core --- the Playbook has been demoing with one hand tied behind their back.
post #53 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by nht View Post

This is untrue. A RTOS is defined as a OS that can provide deterministic timing. There are fast RTOS and slow ones. A general purpose OS can outperform a slower RTOS.

Maybe my choice of words was poor... I basically meant the same thing. There is no way to say that any given RTOS will always outperform a general purpose OS at any given task. E.g. the deterministic timing could enforce the availability of CPU cycles for a task that a general purpose OS is holding back for valid reasons.

Quote:
Originally Posted by nht View Post

Ah...no. I wish this was a basic characteristic of an RTOS because I spent too many late nights helping hand tune VxWorks kernels in a past life. It was seriously un-fun and I wasn't the poor schmuck actually assigned to do this but the app developer making sure that something critical didn't get hosed with a specific configuration change to improve performance.

Thanks for the correction. This was actually something we were told in university... so, you say there are RTOSs that do that and others that don't, or is this rubbish altogether... Just trying to wrap my head around what you are saying: a RTOS switching off parts of the kernel because there is hopefully no need for them (commonly because there is no hardware that makes use of them) can cause problems for software... Not at all doubting what you are saying, but I am afraid I'm not really getting it yet.
post #54 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by Alfiejr View Post

so ... RIM is promising a lot of very fast work. but if they can't meet their own announced schedule soon, it is going to really hurt them. in this hyper competitive market they can't get away with stringing everyone along thru the next year with just bits and pieces of software and a half-done new PlayBook for sale. didn't they learn that from the big BB Storm flop?

Yeah! And from a lot of newly acquired companies that aren't integrated into RIM.

RIM can't yet commit to specific hardware (CPU & GPU), price point, battery life, delivery date...

Compare that to the intro of the iPhone. SJ showed a working demo of the OS and the limited number of apps on the iPhone. Made firm commitments on specs, price, battery, delivery date. Then, to meet the delivery deadline, he had to pull experienced OS X developers and repurpose them to iOS for 6 months. Experienced, highly-motivated people, used to working with each other, directed to perform a few, well-defined tasks. No outside software dependencies. No outside Developer interfaces to dissipate resources.

I knew most of the developers of the original 1984 Mac Software/Hardware team -- less than 20 people, working "100 hours a week and Loving it". All under the focused direction of a super perfectionist who knows how to motivate people.

I suspect the same sort of team was in place to assure that iOS 1 delivered the goods.


With the stumbling, rambling, buffoonery that RIM has exhibited since the September PlayBook announcement -- I see zero chance of RIM making this happen before June 2011. Then, they will have a 1.0 release, with expected bugs, etc. and limited choice of apps.

I suspect that Microsoft could have a tablet version of WP7 in that timeframe -- with a good mix of basic apps. Android's Tablet OS version will be available with apps. HP, likely, will have a WebOS Tablet with apps.

Who is going to buy a PlayBook? Why?

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post #55 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by samab View Post

That's like saying 512kb is enough.

It's not like they can't run it on single core --- the Playbook has been demoing with one hand tied behind their back.

Maybe they should untie that hand and use it to cover a certain mouth...
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post #56 of 89
Quote:
However, just this spring Lazaridis claimed that touch-only phones like the iPhone arent that popular, and that most of the people buying touchscreen phones were subsequently going back to phones with hardware keyboards, like those that made RIM famous.

What an idiot, the iPhone isn't a BB Storm.

Basing claims on BB users burned by the Storm and preferring to upgrade to a Bold or a Curve over a Torch does not equate to what other platform users do.

There are a lot of BB users who were taken in by the Storm hype who will not even look at the Torch, they often have no choice but BB so go back to the keyboard.

The Storm was probably up there with the worst phones ever made, the Storm 2 (Where "We've fixed it this time".) was marginally better, presenting the Torch to twice burned people is beyond a joke.

I think RIM is in for some hard times ahead.
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post #57 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by addabox;1765423[B

]I'm thinking that maybe Palm is the real point of comparison for RIM going forward. They managed to get a well received and by all reports pleasant to use OS out the door, but broke compatibility with their installed user base. Thus, the lack of apps and the comparatively lackluster developer environment couldn't generate enough buzz and goodwill to break through new platform inertia.[/B]

MS, of course, has done something similar with WP7, but MS has a lot more going on (and many more revenue streams) than just a mobile operating system and can use that to help prop things up until if and when their new phone OS gets some critical mass.

So if RIM has to basically start over with a new OS, then they have to pretty much start over in the marketplace. Sure, there's some product loyalty and name recognition, but the fabled BB installed user base lock-in behemoth pretty much counts for nothing. An army of Palm users didn't do the Pre much good, we'll see if QNX phones can do any better.


Up to a point there is a comparison. However (1) RIM's Blackberry installed user base is much larger than Palm's had become. (2) Palm's users and developers were pretty 'hacked off' with Palm after years of decline, false promises made of different paths that Palm was going to take with their OS.

The army had very little sense of loyalty to Palm, I suspect Blackberry users may have more.
post #58 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by samab View Post

Users benefit from having a system that has a smaller footprint from the start.

An RTOS does not guarantee a smaller footprint, it only guarantees real-time schedulability. The OS X kernel is only a few MB in size, everything else is GUI, drivers and additional desktop OS support. Adding all that stuff to QNX will make it have a comparable footprint to iOS.

You may be thinking of embedded OS versions of QNX, which are nowhere near capable enough for a general purpose user machine. The embedded space is also realtime, but everything except what that device's board is removed, and nothing other than the paltry hardware is supported.

Sure toasters and microwaves have small embedded OSes and QNX has flavors for them, but those tiny flavors have no bearing or influence on something that has to support as much generalized computation and user centric I/O as a tablet OS.

Quote:
Originally Posted by samab View Post

We are talking about resource constraint environment with limited RAM and CPU speed. A couple of megabytes saved here and there may not mean much on the desktop, but on a cell phone that may be a lot.

Not on a cellphone with several hundreds of megabytes of space. Especially when as I mentioned, the size of the OS X and QNX kernel isn't very big. it is all the stuff you have to add to make it a general purpose user centric device that makes an OS footprint relatively large.
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post #59 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hiro View Post

An RTOS does not guarantee a smaller footprint, it only guarantees real-time schedulability. The OS X kernel is only a few MB in size, everything else is GUI, drivers and additional desktop OS support. Adding all that stuff to QNX will make it have a comparable footprint to iOS.

You may be thinking of embedded OS versions of QNX, which are nowhere near capable enough for a general purpose user machine. The embedded space is also realtime, but everything except what that device's board is removed, and nothing other than the paltry hardware is supported.

Sure toasters and microwaves have small embedded OSes and QNX has flavors for them, but those tiny flavors have no bearing or influence on something that has to support as much generalized computation and user centric I/O as a tablet OS.



Not on a cellphone with several hundreds of megabytes of space. Especially when as I mentioned, the size of the OS X and QNX kernel isn't very big. it is all the stuff you have to add to make it a general purpose user centric device that makes an OS footprint relatively large.

But there is no difference between the embedded version of QNX and the desktop version of QNX --- which has always exist for the last 30 years (i.e. web browser on a floppy disc).
post #60 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by dreyfus2 View Post

None and nothing. Because this assumption is based on the unproven premise that iOS contains things it does not need. It is not OS X, it is much lighter (e.g. lacks tons of drivers and interfaces). There is zero difference between a RTOS and an non-realtime OS on a tablet or phone, if the regular OS has been slimmed down to only support the functionality required on a device. There is also no general speed advantage (with e.g. processing messages) when comparing a process on a RTOS with one scheduled to run with the highest priority under a regular OS.

The only real benefit (a theoretical one and one that does not affect the user at all) is that RTOSs can switch off unneeded parts of themselves dynamically, e.g. you could deploy the very same version of an OS to different devices with different capabilities and the system could optimize itself for each of them. Apple has to do this the hard way by providing different downloads for different devices.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dick Applebaum View Post

Thank you! I understand! Someone like Apple who makes an universal OS for a wide range of hardware would benefit from a RTOS that could scale itself to its environment (rather than being manually scaled and deployed).

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Not really. When you want optimization in size or functionality, you bake it in from the start. Yes, you compile the OS exactly like you want it. Embedded OSes like QNX come with lots of configurability in the build phase, and those build tools are really what the Embedded space buyers pay for, not the OS itself.

Embedded devices are developed with as little changing after the fact as possible, maybe never. You don't rely on an automated in the field OS self-reconfiguration unless you want to kill your reputation.
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post #61 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by mjtomlin View Post

iOS is in fact OS X, it is NOT Mac OS X. Operating systems are not defined by drivers or interfaces, but rather architecture. It is a lot smaller in footprint, because all the hardware support can be trimmed down to just several components and remain fixed.

Wrong iOS has the same basic architecture as OS X. Just peel off the Java and Cocoa layers, put on CocoaTouch in their place. Everything below CocoaTouch is OS X kernel and services, minus the service parts that aren't needed in iOS devices.

The beauty of iOS is that the kernel Hardware Abstraction Layer is pretty much the only part that needs custom porting to a completely different chip architecture, like moving from PPC to Intel, or Intel to ARM. All the rest is built directly on top of the kernels Hardware Abstraction Layer, meaning you compile and build to the platform, but since you aren't using platform dependencies at the higher levels, there's no porting to be done.
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post #62 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by samab View Post

But there is no difference between the embedded version of QNX and the desktop version of QNX --- which has always exist for the last 30 years (i.e. web browser on a floppy disc).

And there is no difference between the OS X kernel and the iOS kernel, which has been developed off MachOS since the late 1970's, making the tech tree around 30+ years mature. Got another poorly crafted comparison we can break?
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post #63 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by samab View Post

That's like saying 512kb is enough.

No, this is like saying when I have $1M I don't need to worry about saving every last penny.

Besides, saving a few MB here and there with QNX when you just slapped AIR on your platform is like getting a diet coke to go along with your triple patty burger and super sized fries to save a couple calories.

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It's not like they can't run it on single core --- the Playbook has been demoing with one hand tied behind their back.

Then why isn't RIM using the Playbook OS in phones before dual core A9s Blackberries?

It can run...it just can't run well.

Hint: It's not QNX's fault.
post #64 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by samab View Post

QNX implements actionscript classes natively in C/C++.

Frankly, I don't get it. How can an operating system implements (or is it transform/pre-compile?) a scripting language into high level language, and furthermore you called it native?

Every scripting language of course must have its interpreter in native machine language (ARM in this case). By using scripting language, it adds inefficiency, so more powerful CPU and more RAM is needed. Why PlayBook needs dual core 1Ghz CPU and 1Gb memory? Because Flash and AIR are not efficient, but they need tons of application for PlayBook, and they think this will lure mass of Flash/AIR programmer.
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post #65 of 89
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Originally Posted by BuffyzDead View Post


Why must we always suffer some kind of childish outburst like this? RIM never said this was going to kill the iPad. They're trying to stay relevant and grab a piece of the tablet pie. I can't say that I blame them. Heaven forbid that they try to survive rather than just lay down and die. It doesn't look like they'll succeed, but at least they're trying. Do try to act like an adult rather than expressing the first foolish reaction that comes to mind.
post #66 of 89
I didn't realize how small 7" tablets were!

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iPod nano 5th Gen 8GB Orange, iPad 3rd Gen WiFi 32GB White
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post #67 of 89
Nobody in their right mind would buy a Blackberry anything. They are total crap made by faceless suits.
post #68 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aizmov View Post

I didn't realize how small 7" tablets were!

Not to mention how much screen space a keyboard takes up in landscape mode on a narrow wide screen.
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post #69 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by sflocal View Post

The need to play the hardware-specs trump card is becoming antiquated.

You don't know what you are talking about!!!

IPads most significant shortcomings are with it's Hardware. There is far to little RAM, even the iPhone has twice as much. The CPU itself is slow relative to what you can get onthe desktop even five years ago.
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While I'm sure faster hardware can make badly-written software seem to run better, in the end it comes down to optimization and taking to time to polish and do everything that one can do to get everything running fluidly.

What does one do when that has taken place and the software is still slow or doesn't have enough RAM to operate correctly? Your point of view is elitist BS and does not reflect the world we live in.
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Where mobile devices are concerned, Apple has proved to me that it is not important the Ghz speed, or how many cores a CPU has, only that engineers have taken the time to get the two aspects (hardware and software) to complement each other.

Really to me it looks like Apple has proven the old adage about a sucker being born every minute. The certainly have done a good job of optimizing but it is very apparent that iOS has already outgrown the initial waves of iPhone hardware. Your statement is so silly in the context of what hardware is required to run the current version of iOS as to be a joke.
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RIM at least has a better shot than the other players.

This I agree with. However they need to get a C/C++ development kit out fast. In any event QNX is nothing to sneeze at, it has been around a very very long time running critical systems. Of course the big issue is getting a suitable GUI running on top of it while navigating the patent minefield.
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Like Apple, they appear to be in control of both the hardware and software. The disadvantage they have (IMHO) is that their software support is lacking to say the least, and they certainly do not have the software engineering talent that is comparable to what Apple has. This is where I think RIM will fail.

This is an issue and frankly they will not have long after the tablets release to offer up native C/C++ apps. I actually see the offering of flash on the device as a big mistake myself. They would have been better off to follow Apples lead and offer a few core native apps and a good web browser.

All of that being said though it does appear to be the best vision yet for an iPad competitive product. The potential is there to attrack a bunch of smart developers. Where as the Java platforms seem to attrack hacks and half assed programmers.
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It's difficult to try matching Apple's offerings at the same price points due to Apple's ability to control the economies-of-scale. They have so much clout in obtaining all the components at the best prices. It leaves everyone else picking up the breadcrumbs that are left over.

This is BS as the iPad is grossly overpriced. Especially when you look at the models with more Flash. The incremental upgrades don't cost that much retail much less in production quantities.

In fact I suspect Apple might try to do something like this when iPad 2 comes out. They could knock $100 off the price of iPad 1 and introduce iPad 2 at the same price points. At each of those price points they can easily double the installed flash. An iPad with a significantly reduced price would prevent undercut Apple and the original price points allow for a far more powerful platform to attack the other makers with.

The only problem here is that app store will be quickly flooded with apps requiring the additional memory of iPad 2. The biggest impact iPad 2 will have is to make iPad 1 look pathetic and do so quickly.
post #70 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by macinthe408 View Post

Around this time is when we should start comparing the PlayBook to the iPad 2, not today's iPad.

{insert Jobs' Wayne Gretzky quote here}

Maybe we could if the iPad 2 was actually available for 'comparison'...
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post #71 of 89
The number one issue is that flash/AIr will attack the wrong element to the platform. It is sort of like what happens when a street walker starts standing on the corner downtown.

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Originally Posted by jz1492 View Post

PlayBook is nothing more than a repackage of the QNX + Adobe Air embedded platform, originally intended for vertical applications in the automotive, industrial, medical and other industries --i.e. inside limited purpose devices.

If you follow Apples model a tablet is a limited purpose device!
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QNX Automotive PDF

No wonder they can be showing all these demos so early. Definitely a forte of Flash.

What bothers me is that we get as users a bunch of crappy flash apps on the platform. It might hold them over until they can get a real C/C++ SDK out but I would fear developping a bad reputation. Further I'd like to see them completely dump Java support. The combo of flash, JavaScript & C/C++ ought to cover every level of developer from the idiot to the PHd.
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But the big question remains whether the QNX embedded platform is suitable as a general purpose computing device.

Why not? For this type of device they would have to do a new GUI anyways.
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With what we've seen in those demos, I don't think we have an answer. \

Well of course not. However in the long run I see this as a platform that has a lot of potential. The platform biggest challenge will be attempting to properly power the flash/Air environment while managing the battery. Apples approach was to reject flash but it looks like RIM will optimize for it. It should be noted that for the first couple of iPhones Apple simply didn't have the hardware to run flash.

To that end the first release might look like a train wreck, but if we are honest with ourselves the first few releases of iOS where wanting too. RIM needs however to be able to cover the basic app needs with native apps at release. By basic app needs I mean a solid web browser, a calendar, an e-mail client, media client(movies & audio) and some sort of notes mini database app. These have to be there and they need to be snappy native apps. Having these in place at launch is critical as they will hOld many user over until native apps arrive.
post #72 of 89
[QUOTE=Dick Applebaum;1765504]Isn't that a spec rather than a benefit?

Also, doesn't the smaller footprint result, to a large degree, from: a) the ARM architecture; b) unneeded hardware removed (drivers, HDD, OD); c) economies of SOC packaging (ala the A4); d) optimization and packaging of the OS for the target devices (ala iOS).
[quote]
How about yes & no!

ARM in and of itself has little to do with a smaller foot print as you can run Linux and Unix there. You might make the arguement that SoC packaging results in smaller OSes due to less hardware to support but that is a mistake too. Again there are distributions of Linux that run on SoC hardware.

You do hit upon one thing though that is important that is tailoring the OS to support the target Hardware precisely. Realtime OSes can be tailored to support only the parts of the system needed to accomplish a task.
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I am serious here -- A RTOS has advantages/benefits when monitoring/managing a lot of rapid realtime activity in an automobile, router, etc. But, what does that capability bring to an iPhone or a tablet?

For most user level stuff it brings nothing. QNX though brings it's long history with it without the baggage of Linux. QNX should allow them to quickly tailor the OS to the hardware which is a big advantage.

Due to it's realtime nature QNX may allow the main CPUs to take on the tasks often done with dedicated/embedded ARM chips say in the iPhone (Someone once indicated that there are in reality 6 ARM chips in iPhone. I don't know if that is accurate but it is possible. QNX, with the right hardware could allow the tablet to eliminate these support processors and deal with data directly.
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Specifically, what can be done better, faster with a RTOS on the kinds of things a smart phone or a tablet can practically perform?

Well if RIM had the scratch to do it, they could do a custom SoC with much of the I/O managed directly by the OS. For example get rid of the baseband processor. From the user perspective they might be able to better respond to user inputs.

The interesting thing here with Apples A4 approach is this do they have the volume to really justify the development of A4 and the follow ons over the next few years. Especially when we talk consummer priced hardware. The current A4 is a trivial design in many respects with the potential for even more stuff on board. The question becomes wil they end up doing more with the on chip CPUs as opposed to embedded chips.

If you look back at the PC industry this is what happened to modems. Initially they where pretty smart devices. Then pretty quickly software based modems came into play. These lowered modem costs at the expense of CPU cycles. In any event QNX should have potential here with modern day analogs.

In the end QNX much like Linux can be transparent to the user. In a well design GUI you should not have to see the OSes dirty underthings. Ideally in a web browser you would not see any difference between that browser running in a QNX based OS, Windows or Linux. In the end what we are hopping for is a somewhat open system that leverages the stable QNX architecture.
post #73 of 89
You touch upon the issue of schedulers which is an important concept to grasp or at least understand some what. OS schedulers are many and can have significant impacts on various workloads. For those that follow Linux they have taken various approaches over the years. These approaches can favor one type of usage over others all without changing vast parts of the kernel.

For tablets, Apple seems to have a complex sceduler for iOS. At least it seems like it would be complex to handle all the different multitasking 4.2 now supports.

Skipping back to Linux you can get a realtime kernel to run under Linux so you end up with multiple schedulers.

As a side note back in the day of the Mini computer I work on systems buoy on top of a DEC platform that is frankly kinda strange when comPared to today's OSes. The OAS was choosen simply because the programmers liked the tools.

What this highlights is that QNXs realtime nature probably doesn't mean much. It is the tools that make or break the system. In part RIMs mad rush to QNX is likely to be driven in part by seeing many of the components they need there ready to go. In otherwords schedulers, realtime support and other stuff probably didn't come into play when the purchase decision was made. Rather the over riding factor was likely time to market and having a clear ownership of IP. IP is no small thing here either as Java is a mess, Linux has the horrors of the GPL and Windows has all the direction of a sailboat without a rudder.

So now RIM has a system where they own the IP, can control direction and be flexible enough to support a variety of users. There only real issue is getting past Flash/Air.

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Originally Posted by nht View Post

This is untrue. A RTOS is defined as a OS that can provide deterministic timing. There are fast RTOS and slow ones. A general purpose OS can outperform a slower RTOS.

The performance of an RTOS is generally measured by it's worst case task response time...not best case or even average case throughput. This is because you typically won't use an RTOS unless you have a hard Real Time requirement that must be met and you analyze performance based on that worst case time (using RMA).

So the difference is an RTOS will guarantee that a task will happen within it worst case time including all preemption latency, context switch time, yada yada yada.



This depends on how the scheduler is designed. Different scheduler algorithms produce different results for when processes get preempted. Many RTOS will starve lower priority processes to insure critical tasks meet their time deadline. Most GP OS have some kind of fairer scheduler.



Ah...no. I wish this was a basic characteristic of an RTOS because I spent too many late nights helping hand tune VxWorks kernels in a past life. It was seriously un-fun and I wasn't the poor schmuck actually assigned to do this but the app developer making sure that something critical didn't get hosed with a specific configuration change to improve performance.
post #74 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by wizard69 View Post

It is the tools that make or break the system.

Bingo. QNX has a good reputation there, but I'm not sure that translates well into also presenting a good GUI layer, especially since the CEO recently said something about not focusing on developing/finishing the OpenGL and ARM native developer tools in the foreseeable future, that Flash and HTML5 were good enough.

Apple tried the rich web app game with iPhone 1 and that just wasn't good enough, HTML5 is not ready to take up that much responsibility yet even though it shows promise. I don't see how RIM can think it is unless the upper management is really that technically daft.
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post #75 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hiro View Post

Bingo. QNX has a good reputation there, but I'm not sure that translates well into also presenting a good GUI layer, especially since the CEO recently said something about not focusing on developing/finishing the OpenGL and ARM native developer tools in the foreseeable future, that Flash and HTML5 were good enough.

Apple tried the rich web app game with iPhone 1 and that just wasn't good enough, HTML5 is not ready to take up that much responsibility yet even though it shows promise. I don't see how RIM can think it is unless the upper management is really that technically daft.

Native C/C++, openGL ES 2.0 tools in next month in January 2011.

http://www.zdnet.com/blog/btl/rims-p...e-shines/42508
post #76 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by samab View Post

Native C/C++, openGL ES 2.0 tools in next month in January 2011.

http://www.zdnet.com/blog/btl/rims-p...e-shines/42508

Yeah, maybe. But this is what the CEO is saying: http://mashable.com/2010/11/16/rim-ceo-on-apps/. That's an awful top heavy dissing of the Native SDK priority right there.

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“publish native to the BlackBerry without writing any native code.”

WTF does that meaN?
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post #77 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hiro View Post

Yeah, maybe. But this is what the CEO is saying: http://mashable.com/2010/11/16/rim-ceo-on-apps/. That's an awful top heavy dissing of the Native SDK priority right there.

WTF does that meaN?

In the same interview, he also talked about gaming companies can use QNX's native stuff on the Playbook.

Quote: "QNX has a bunch of native development tools. Those that are working with it say, gaming companies say it has more power than a gaming console because you can use web tools."

http://finance.yahoo.com/news/RIM-CE...html?x=0&.v=13
post #78 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by samab View Post

In the same interview, he also talked about gaming companies can use QNX's native stuff on the Playbook.

Quote: "QNX has a bunch of native development tools. Those that are working with it say, gaming companies say it has more power than a gaming console because you can use web tools."

http://finance.yahoo.com/news/RIM-CE...html?x=0&.v=13

And if you believe that gem I suggest you invest heavily in the Penny Stock offerings found in a lot of spam recently.

Web capability is NOT how you make a powerful gaming experience for a native app. The latency! It kills anything considered power in gaming! The web has a place in many games, but not as part of core gameplay unless the game is specifically designed for the web and written in a web-centric browser-managed language.

The statement is just another wonderful example of how technically inept this CEO is. He has absolutely no idea of when his mouth spouts stuff that his engineering team is groaning about. He's a business guy, not a technical guy, a known high risk for the company kiss of death in the high tech industry. And his Co-CEO who does have a technical background has done absolutely nothing since September to fix any of the technical gaffes. All he does is spout fruffery and hold seemingly inoperative prototypes on stage.
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post #79 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hiro View Post

And if you believe that gem I suggest you invest heavily in the Penny Stock offerings found in a lot of spam recently.

Web capability is NOT how you make a powerful gaming experience for a native app. The latency! It kills anything considered power in gaming! The web has a place in many games, but not as part of core gameplay unless the game is specifically designed for the web and written in a web-centric browser-managed language.

The statement is just another wonderful example of how technically inept this CEO is. He has absolutely no idea of when his mouth spouts stuff that his engineering team is groaning about. He's a business guy, not a technical guy, a known high risk for the company kiss of death in the high tech industry. And his Co-CEO who does have a technical background has done absolutely nothing since September to fix any of the technical gaffes. All he does is spout fruffery and hold seemingly inoperative prototypes on stage.

He didn't say that web tools are powerful --- he said that it is more powerful when compared to gaming consoles which lack web tools at their disposal. You don't have to use it, but it's there if you ever need it.
post #80 of 89
Quote:
Originally Posted by samab View Post

He didn't say that web tools are powerful --- he said that it is more powerful when compared to gaming consoles which lack web tools at their disposal. You don't have to use it, but it's there if you ever need it.

You don't get it. Saying something and it's truth are two totally different things. I deal with these technologies on a daily basis and the RIM co-CEO's original statement was entirely incorrect for the reasons I stated previously.

Not to mention I don't think anyone has a gaming console or RIM referenced device that doesn't already have a web presence for the appropriate content. And none of them claim it adds to their power.

Web tech in the OpenGL using space adds to connectivity, and you manage the latency in that connectivity in ways that limit the ultimate power of the application. There is no escaping that, it is a fundamental property of network connected gaming.
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