S01E10: Man of Many Apps

In the first 2-digit episode of PineTalk, Ezra and Peter are happy to interview Martijn Braam, whom you may know of his involvement with postmarketOS, the many apps he develops or his videos and blog posts.

They also present some homework and discuss community feedback and questions.

Special Intro

See credits at the bottom of this post.

What have we been up to lately?

But let’s get to it now and start with the

Interview with Martijn Braam

Links about the things we talked about, in order of appearance:

Getting started with Linux

Thank’s again to Martijn for coming on!

Follow Martijn’s work on:

Community engagement 😀

Homework on PineCube (Ezra)

Things Ezra did:

  • Installing Armbian without a screen (sounds more impressive than it is)

    • I simply downloaded the PineCube Armbian image.

    • Flashed the image to an SD card.

    • Plugged in the PineCube to power and ethernet and shabamalama! I was 99% done.

    • An SSH server is installed by default on the image, so I simply had to find my PineCube’s IP, which I did using the following command

    • nmap -sP 192.168.1.0/24

    • And logged in using the default values of:

    • user: root

    • pass: 1234

  • Install media-ctl && ffmpeg

    • media-ctl is a part of v4l-utils and is useful for configuring the camera.

    • ffmpeg is… well, ffmpeg, must I really explain?

It’s what I use to take the video feed of the camera and stream it via RTMP to a RTMP server, which I setup next.

  • RTMP server

    • I followed a tutorial to help me setup NGINX for RTMP streaming. It was simple enough once I wrapped my head around it. I never used NGINX or RTMP before, so it was quite the fun new experience. 🙂

  • Personal livestream of me cooking to my friends

    • After getting everything setup, I though I’d actually have some fun with it, so I streamed myself making supper to my friends! 😛

    • The camera seems much better than that of the PinePhone, the reason for this is lens.

  • I have a few projects in mind, I’ll definitly make a video about the PineCube. And, ofc, talk about it on the PineTalk when I get around to it.

    • Automation using TensorFlow Lite for object recognition. (saving the past few minutes and few future minutes locally on the device) or something like that.

    • Peter had the idea of doing a livestream on YT or some other video platform using the PineCube as a camera, could be fun for any Pine related livestream I may do in the future.

Homework regarding FM radio (Peter)

Last episode, we could not give a good answer to the question Deon Denis asked on Youtube: How about a FM radio back cover? So:

  • How do other devices implement this?

    • Headset serves as antenna

    • Sometimes implemented within the SoC (e.g. MediaTek MT6753)

    • Sometimes within the Wifi/BT chip (e.g. Samsung Galaxy SII)

  • Do we have support for FM radio?

    • the Realtek RTL 8723CS chip used for WiFi and Bluetooth in the PinePhone alledgedly supports receiving FM radio according to its announcement, but it’s nowhere to be found on the spec sheet.

    • but: We don’t have a driver that would support this, and we don’t have the hardware for it.

  • Would the Pogopin i2c (i-squared-c bus (inter-integrated-circuit interface) offer enough bandwith for fm-radio on the PinePhone?

  • Alternatives:

    • PinePhone RTL SDR connected to USB

      • clunky (many cables)

      • likely requires external power source,

      • but: software exists, see e.g. rtl_fm_player

    • also, easy: (Bluetooth) Headphones with FM Radio are a thing

Listener Feedback

@DarkeyVilkulak on Odysee wrote:

PinePhone"LoRA is not for sending images. Kids these days are really spoiled ;D What about simple text communication and long range mesh for simple communication. It can use some kind of low bandwidth encryption. There are several projects like Meshtastic about that."

Listener Questions

Sebastian asked via email

1) combability of the frameworks/distros

PinePhonePinePhoneIs there a way (or some projects that try) to run apps, that where written with one desktops framework, to run those on another desktop? Like running Lomiri apps on kde-mobile?

Additionally, when I see things right, quite some apps aren’t packaged for every (major) PinePhone distro (even though they use the same framework). So it would be even great, to use AUR on mobian (also it sounds somewhat strange). I just mean, it would be great, when software for a specific need, wouldn’t have to be written over and over again.

2) Different starting points

Where are good starting points (and where to find them) that would help different parts of the ecosystem?

  • There is a lot

  • file bug reports (or help triangulating those)

  • help with documentation

  • help with metadata/other little things: If there’s a project you like a lot, but it does not have a desktop file or icon, maybe help with that. Or contribute AppStream Metadata via pull request. Pick what you think is up your alley, the worst thing that can happen is that your pull or merge request is being declined.

  • helping other users: Forums, chat, …

  • like Martijn said in our interview: Pick something (maybe there’s a rather simple app that you lack) and get started with that. Pick a framework, pick a language, and dive in. Eventually, you might come up with something, and even if it’s objectively not very good, you will have learned something, and if you keep going, you might eventually get decent at it.

Feedback and Questions welcome!

Remember: This is a community podcast, so please leave feedback on what we should do better, get your suggestion’s in and feel free to ask questions!

Use #pinetalk or tweet at us @talkpine, toot at us @talkpine@fosstodon.org, send email to pinetalk@pine64.org and join our Discord!

Credits:

Intro and Outro Music

Thank you to NerdZoom Media for being PineTalk’s audio producers!

Special Intro credits

Script & Editing: Ezra

Cast

  • Ezra as himself

  • Peter as Faang and his minion.

Audio

Atmosphere

Calm Forest Birds BurghRecords - Sonny Fascia

Music

Aquarium by Kevin MacLeod, License Leaving Home by Kevin MacLeod, License Waltz of Treachery by Kevin MacLeod, License