Understandig the giant task Purism has achieved


#1

I think many of the commenters here, should watch the ccc-video (again) to understand what a giant task had to be achieved.
I am very thankful, especially for Nicole, that the starting point of delivering a free and secure phone is finally reached and they are on the way to a more perfect librem5,.
When I think back to the start of the fairphone I, it too had some shortcommings which are solved by now. But the fairphone III is still not a free phone and not a secure phone. So purism had a much greater problrm to solve.


#2

When is the right time for congratulations? When the first phone has been send out to a regular customer? When does Purism celebrate it? And what is the equivalent of popping the corks for non-alcoholics and vegetarians? When is the time to punsh my android device into the trash? And where the hell does those pink elephant suddenly came from?


#3

Purism did some creative lateral-thinking when designing this gnu/linux mobile-compute-device to achieve RYF that’s for sure !


#4

I just wasted 2 hours arguing with the ignoramuses on r/linux who don’t even bother to learn the technical details about the Librem 5, but love to criticize Purism.

Some of the criticism is fair, but a lot of it is based on wrongheaded assumptions and lack of technical knowledge. We really need to educate the public about all the technical challenges involved in making the Librem 5 and why it has such high costs. The two circuit boards, plus the two M.2 cards in the Librem 5 will require 3-4 times more area than the circuit board in a normal phone. I calculate that it will take 1453.7 mm2 of chip packages in the Librem 5 to equal the functionality of one Snapdragon, which is 153.8 mm2 in size.

The Librem 5 is arguably the most innovative phone in a decade:

  1. First phone with hardware kill switches;
  2. First with a replaceable cellular modem and Wi-Fi/ Bluetooth (on M.2 cards);
  3. First with a smart card reader (for 2FF OpenPGP card);
  4. First running 100% free software (not counting firmware in components);
  5. Only current phone on the market to offer convergence as PC without special hardware

#5

and that wouldn’t even be necessary if Snapdragon was open-hardware ( that’s what i meant by “lateral-thinking”) tch them patents and copyright holders always forcing our hand and creating wasted resources in the process. :roll_eyes::face_vomiting:


#6

You’ll never convince the loud, stubborn and the haters.
But there’s always the silent majority including some doubters.

Today I tooted my Promise Delivery Chart & Chronology.
It’s already my most-boosted one (admittedly a low standard :blush:).

I’m a bit proud DigitalCourage and TuxPhones boosted it, which tells me there are knowledgeable people in some of the right spots who understand the importance and magnificence of this project.

Don’t let the others ruin our days :sunglasses:

To the folks at Purism: :champagne: :wine_glass:
Well done!


#7

This is a great thread. People in general just have no idea how hard some of these things are. They see for example a launcher and think psssh, that doesn’t even look nice, and just think it is trivial to fix the UI and rewrite large portions of code. They think because there are 1,000 fart apps in app stores that programming is a trivial affair. No one questions that engineers who builds a rocket are doing hard work, but we have somehow come to a point where the engineering that goes into software is trivialized every day. I think the hardware accomplishment here is amazing and deserves applause and appreciation, but the continued amount of work that will be going into the software here will be nothing short of impressive as well. It will benefit the phone, but will also benefit the Linux community and anyone else trying to make their own Linux phone.


#8

And let’s also think about the foremost respect-your-freedom hardware pioneer guys.

I think the first was a larger venture, still Openmoko suffered from some hardware bugs in their final product, as there were some bug fixing hardware mod services available for the Neo 1973 and Neo FreeRunner.

Then a real open hardware expert wizard, Nikolaus Schaller, and his Golden Delicious Computers shop openly engineered and tested their early boards from prototype production runs to delivering fully working GTA04 boards.

Another venture, the neo900, was trying to piggy-back on the N900 and GTA04, apparently failed to deliver something, though.

May there be even more phone hardware expert experience?


#9

:hugs: to everyone :hugs:


#10

There was an attempt to make another production run of GTA04 devices a bit more recently (2014?), but almost the entire batch failed due to a last-minute hardware change on one of the chips (the RAM/flash combo chip: the original was 512 MB RAM, 1 GB flash; new: 1 GB RAM, 512 MB flash) - the new chip was apparently an utter nightmare to solder.

I was one of the backers, had my preorder placed and all. Had the manufacturing worked, I’d be using it now and wouldn’t have even considered a Librem 5.


#11

i’m not so sure that Purism has “achieved” everything it set itself up for but they did put “most” of the stuff together nicely so far and we will happily support them with our $ for as long as they rise up to it.


#12

How so?
Of course it’s not the end of the freedom road (full open hardware), but except for the delivery date they accomplished everything they promised for v1 plus a considerable amount of stuff they wished for (most likely first RYF phone).
The only things that were considered and did not end up in the phone I can think of are NFC and dual SIM, which pales in contrast to this achievement.


#13

Oh production failures, what a setback for a tiny volume hardware project. And that could not be resolved?

Yeah, so many things that need to fit right in place to form a success.


#14

They tried, but in the end it just couldn’t be done. See here:
http://lists.goldelico.com/pipermail/gta04-owner/2017-February/007259.html (the first announcement of the production failure, there’s more in the rest of the thread)
http://lists.goldelico.com/pipermail/gta04-owner/2017-April/007319.html (a later announcement that the board production company won’t be going back to do it again because the chips are terrible)
http://lists.goldelico.com/pipermail/gta04-owner/2019-January/007922.html (the most current piece of news, the project manager does want to go back and try to repair the defective batch, but he’s got several other things to do and still isn’t sure how well it’ll work)


#15

Thanks for the pointers, so sad, still fingers crossed for the manual reworking part for you backers!

Interesting, that there, after the successfull production of the first replacement board version series (GTA04A4) the first, machine picked trial production run for the v2 version (GTA04A5) had a volume of 36 devices (6x6, 4x9, 3x12, …).


#16

So your crystal ball, that apparently works good, actually said it was never considered to start the shipping (to the backers, not just developers) with anything different than the prototype testing versions?

Ok, pinephone did it, or no, they ask devs to apply for shipment.