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A Buggy Mir Shown Running Unity 8 On Ubuntu Touch

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  • #51
    Originally posted by chrisb View Post
    You don't need to develop anything proprietary. Android can install .apk files downloaded by the web browser - all you need to do to "make your own version of Play" is to host a web site and put the apk files there. You don't need a complicated frontend, you can just use the web browser. It's trivial. Amazon have their own Amazon Appstore for Android. You can install it on any Android device that supports sideloading or installs from non-Play sources. Amazon Appstore may not be as popular as Play but it does have over 100,000 apps, which is a lot. There are 36 different Appstores worldwide - Play may be the most popular but it is not a monopoly.
    Well that's nice.

    I already pointed out that there is a version of Gentoo that uses Bionic. You can load Gentoo onto any system you want. In fact, GCC supports Bionic as the default C library, so it shouldn't be that difficult to build any embedded Linux distribution using Bionic if you want. I think ChromeOS uses Bionic too, though I haven't checked.
    I don't think it does.

    Also, Android GPU drivers need Bionic (libhybris has a private Bionic). Mer uses libhybris, so Mer relies on Bionic:
    Now you're just reaching for straws. Libhybris is only used as a necessary measure to be able to utilize Android drivers, since the popularity of Android means that no manufacturer wants to provide anything other than Android drivers. This is also why it's a bad thing that Android is so far away from regular Linux distros, it makes it harder for non-Android systems to utilize the hardware. Most Android drivers are closed-source.

    Mer uses Glibc as the actual libc that the system uses. They don't use bionic because they think it's great, they use it in a compatibility layer because it's the only practical choice to get driver support.

    I said Ubuntu, not Ubuntu Touch.
    And? Ubuntu plans to use Mir on the desktop too. Sadly.

    Dalvik is "fully working" on Ubuntu desktop. It doesn't really matter if a device ships with it or not, since it is trivial to install packages in Ubuntu.
    Yes it matters. If it's not a part of the distro and not even included in standard repos, that means it's not being used. You're moving the goalposts. You could just as well say that everything is in Arch, since users can install whatever they want... that's not the same thing as a distro shipping with it and using it by default, and you know it.

    And there's nothing special about Ubuntu that would make package installing any more "trivial" than other distros. Package management is easy in all modern distros.

    Gentoo-bionic. Also possibly ChromeOS and ChromeCast, I haven't checked.
    Gentoo doesn't ship on any devices though. It's very much a hobbyist OS (not counting derivatives), where people can pretty much install what they want and customize everything, similar to Arch. Not sure about ChromeOS, but ChromeCast doesn't use Bionic, even though it's based on Android.

    So you criticise Android and Ubuntu for being "closed", but endorse a distribution that ships with an actual proprietary closed source software stack developed in secret by a commercial company. Seems contradictory.
    I could say the same thing about you but in reverse... so that's not a useful argument in any way.

    The parts that matter are open in Sailfish. And not only open in the sense that you get a big blob of source releases from one monolithical source after every public release. Mer is an actual community project where anyone can join in the development. The software used in the system are community projects too: Wayland, Qt, libhybris, systemd, glibc and GNU tools - all are community-driven software that welcome patches and contributions from regular people. By contrast, Android reinvents the wheel in many cases - they use their own software solutions that aren't compatible with most Linux distros. Ubuntu does the same, with Mir. The fact that Sailfish resembles regular Linux distros much more than Android is a benefit, because it allows you to run any regular open source Linux software on it, which isn't possible on Android.

    Of course, these design choices might have been necessary when Android was first made, I don't know. But now they no longer are, and Android is locked into a trap of having to maintain backwards compatibility with their earlier versions. Which means that it will in all likelihood stay incompatible with the GNU/Linux world.

    As for the Android compatibility layer, it's an userland application. No different from a distro shipping with Chrome or the Steam client or Virtualbox. It's not a part of the core system, it's not essential for the operation of the system, and it wouldn't be necessary in the first place if Android wasn't made to be so different from other Linux systems - so ultimately it's Google's fault that it needs to be shipped. Maybe if an open source solution shows up that fulfills the same purpose, that can be used instead, but for now it's a necessity for a small startup to use such a software in order to be able to leverage the Android app ecosystem. Either way, it's in no way necessary to ever use Android apps in Sailfish, you can remove Alien Dalvik from Sailfish and it will work just fine without it.


    • #52
      Just to clarify. I'm not saying that Android is bad or that I hate it or whatever.

      Android is nice and all, but there's enough advantages in Sailfish & Tizen to justify having them as alternate mobile platforms. One monolithic platform monopolizing almost 90% of the market is not healthy, open source or not. Especially, when most of that platform is dominated by one manufacturer (Samsung). So it's good to have alternates, especially when they allow benefits that Android doesn't.


      • #53
        Originally posted by Stellarwind View Post
        Mer != Sailfish. Come back when they open their UX sources.
        Ouch. That's a blow.