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My Content
28 Oct 2004
The question:
Can anyone think of a way to make the Zaurus _beep_ from a Python program running in the terminal on the standard Sharp Rom? (Zaurus 5600. Default Sharp ROM. Standard Sharp terminal application.)

I've been using the old 'Riverbank' distribution of Python on the Z to write and execute programs on it for a few months now. Now, I'm writing a program which I want to do one simple thing: Beep to alert the user of a change. An ear-piece headphone + beep + zaurus = ability for the Z to alert the user tactfully of the Python program's output.

What I've tried so far:

1. I tried 'tput bel' on the Z's terminal, because it works on my Linux desktop, but the Z says there is no 'tput' command. I looked in the /bin , /sbin , /usr/bin , and usr/sbin to verify that.

2. I tried to use the Python 'curses' module. The one which I installed on the Z from RiverBank doesn't have the curses module. So much for curses.beep() on the current platform.

3. I can't think of a way to use the ( #include <curses.h> ) strategy from a C program because I still haven't figured out a way to put C programs on the standard Sharp ROM. That's why I'm using Python.

4. By the way, ZGCC doesn't seem to work with the default Sharp ROM. Am I wrong about this?

5. I looked for a .ipk for the curses module on Python. I can't seem to find one that doesn't already require an installation of ZGCC.

6. Riverbank seems to say that they don't support the distribution of Python which I'm using, or any other distribution of Python for the Z anymore, so I can't get such a curses module from them, apparently.
The link which they gave also seems to require zgcc

More questions:
Am I overlooking something? Could I just get the Z to beep through some other clever stategy? It beeps when a key is hit. I wonder if I could get it to beep by overloading it somehow. Could I somehow play a sound file from the terminal with a command? Messy, but I'm almost desperate. Am I stuck? Should I finally give in and try to make the switch to Open Zaurus? Yet another delay.

Clint Reese
C.H.E.I.F. - Cyborgs Having & Encouraging Individual Freedom
29 Apr 2004

The LightGlove is my current dream for Z input. Has anyone tried to get something like this working on the Z?

Clint Reese
18 Apr 2004
Hello. I've been reading about wearable computers on the internet for a few years now, and I've made a few attempts at building some. In my exploration, I came across a device called the "Half Keyboard."


It seems to cost about $300 and seems to be mainly built for OS's like the palm OS.

Now that I have my Z-SL-5600 running Python, though, I am thinking of a cheaper solution.

Why couldn't the Z be configured so that a person could hold it with one hand, and type with one thumb on only _half_ the keyboard? One might have to type 2 keys for each character, but it should be possible.

This might make the Z _truly_ mobile. If one must type with both hands and focus on the device, how can one do something which requires true mobility at the same time?

All I need now is a sutable text editor. I've considered many, The writer of PyPE was even nice enough to expalin to me why my trying to adapt his editor wasn't a very good choice for this application.

Does anyone know how I might make this work? Any other ideas?

Clint Reese
18 Apr 2004

Where do I get RCS or a much simpler revision control system for the Zaurus? I did a search for "RCS" on the forums search, and only found 2 references that I made to it in the past and an apparently unrelated "rcS" reference.

When I search for RCS on the zaurus software index, I get the following link:

Of course,
http://community.zaurus.com/projects/zgcc/ link broken!
is a broken link, so I tried

Maybe I'm missing something, but when I look at the second link, I don't see a reference to RCS. Therefore, I thought it might just be a part of the ZGCC package. I clicked on the link that said: "ZGCC GNU Compiler Suite Release 2.02 -- Get This One! Compile C, C++ and Qt GUI applications onboard: Description, requirements and installation instructions -- now with Qt/E, alias Qtopia, programming support." Then, I did a search for RCS in that document. The only direct reference is: "To Do: There will always be glitches to fix and utilities to add -- find my revision control system (RCS) elsewhere," Elsewhere? Where?

Maybe I should just email Dr. Jeffrey R. Fox instead of bothering everyone else?

Still, I don't really need anything complex right now. Almost 1 megabyte of source code for RCS seems a little heavy for what I need. I could just use something that makes it possible to make many different changes to same document by the same developer on the Zaurus, while saving all of those revisions without wasting a ton of memory. Maybe I can just make some quick modifications to PyPE or something, since I'm trying to develop in Python. Mabye PyPE has a built-in feature that could help me.

OK, what has worked for people for doing onboard development and not wasting a ton of space on different revisions? Is it just me who can't find RCS?

Clint Reese
Z-SL-5600, default Sharp ROM
3 Apr 2004
HI. I have a Z-SL-5600.

There are obviously several distributions of operating systems for it. I've been wondering: Where do these developers get their documentation on the hardware? I haven't done much kernel recompilation or distribution, so this may seem like a stupid question.

I mean, where are the pin-outs? The memory maps? The ARM chip numbers? How does one develop an OS without this kind of information?

Does Sharp keep this kind of information a secret? Sell it? Is it on the mirrors of the Zaurus developer community?

Maybe I should just get involved in the hobbyist, embedded microcontroller communities if I want to understand the hardware or remain in control of the hardware which belongs to me, huh? smile.gif

OK. It's a newbie question.

Clint Reese
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