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Portables Linux Business Hardware

Pepper Pad 2 Linux Web Pad 197

`Sean writes "Pepper Computer debuted their $800 Pepper Pad 2 at DEMOmobile 2004 this week. Specs include a 624 MHz XScale processor, 8.4" 800x600 TFT touchscreen, 802.11b+g, and 20 GB HDD running MontaVista Linux CEE. Out of the box the Pepper Pad 2 loads the Pepper Keeper as its GUI, but a full-blown Linux distribution with Java 2 JRE and X-Window System is sitting under the covers just waiting be customized. I personally can't wait to get a hold of one of these to turn into an OBD-II and telemetry workstation for the rally car."
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Pepper Pad 2 Linux Web Pad

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  • Media Player (Score:3, Interesting)

    by EEproms_Galore ( 755247 ) on Saturday September 11, 2004 @02:04AM (#10219455)
    This would make a great portable media player with a bit of hacking.. Hmmm I sooo want one.
  • by notthe9 ( 800486 ) on Saturday September 11, 2004 @02:09AM (#10219466)
    I realize it is a lot cheaper, but I amnto sure it is worth it. Does the XScale processor pack the necessary punch? I know I have one (albeit a probably inferior one) in my Toshiba e740, which has many of the qualities this thing brags about. Also, is this an actual touch screen? If so, this is unfortunate Having used Tablets before, I really enjoyed the special pens, and would think this would make a great picture. Also, that thumb keyboard looks quite lacking, and considering they are not bragging about their handwriting recognition, it probably also leaves something to be desired. At this point, I think I could get a lot more functionality out of a laptop or one of those tablets-that-runs-your-pc-iver-wifi things than I necesarily would this.
  • unfortunately no (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday September 11, 2004 @02:16AM (#10219487)
    the included linux distribution (a custom gentoo setup, believe it or not) does not run well on this machine. thats why its not the default. its there just to allow developers to get their feet wet.

    also there is the screen, its is only 800x600, very little can be done in that workspace. battery life is
    so, no.

  • Re:USB 1.1 (Score:5, Interesting)

    by arakon ( 97351 ) on Saturday September 11, 2004 @02:51AM (#10219560) Homepage
    I was thinking the USB port would be used for A Mouse or a Keyboard. Especially for someone who though this would be great for editing docs on the go.

    Of course the other half of me thought immediately, i could use it for a game controller and slap mame or another emulator on this bad boy... 600+ MGhz should be plenty enough to run a SNES emu.

    I mean it has built in wireless networking and anyone who would buy this would fork over $50 for a wireless AP right? File Transfer problems solved.
  • Nice ad `Sean (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday September 11, 2004 @03:33AM (#10219636)

    You thought you snuck one past the editors huh?

    Look folks, of course `Sean wants one of these for his rally car...he's in on the damn thing!

    Check out these [pepper.com] pics [pepper.com].

    good job /. editors for plugging this thing for Sean Hamor.

    News for nerds. Shills that matter.

  • Sounds nice... (Score:4, Interesting)

    by cperciva ( 102828 ) on Saturday September 11, 2004 @03:38AM (#10219651) Homepage
    but I worry about the psychological impact of making computers look less like computers. People have been taught for the past few years that they have to keep their computers up to date with security patches, that they should have a firewall and a virus scanner... but this doesn't look like what people recognize as a "computer". It isn't even advertised as a computer; it's called a "web pad".

    Combining the innate cluelessness of most of the people who will buy these, the fact that these don't "look like computers", the fact that these are wireless-only as far as networking is concerned, and the lack of apparent infrastructure for distributing security patches... I have to wonder how well these machines will fare once they reach the real (insecure) world.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday September 11, 2004 @03:39AM (#10219652)
    wickywickywack:~$ whois pepper.com
    Technical Contact:
    Sosik-Hamor, Sean webmaster@pepper.com

    wickywickywack:~$ whois trunkmonkey.com
    Administrative Contact:
    Sosik-Hamor, Sean ssh@speakeasy.net
  • Pepper Keeper? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by david_reese ( 460043 ) on Saturday September 11, 2004 @03:59AM (#10219689)
    Hopefully it'll have better info-retention capabilities than my junior high Trapper Keeper :-) Seriously, my main issue with contact managers are
    1. Data Entry... and this has a full qwerty keyboard (tho it's arguable how usable it is, being so small keys)
    2. Sync capabilities... palm was good, but ipod/iCal is better, and so is my SonyEriccson T610 that supports SyncML. Can't recount the number of times that I lost data due to bad sync or lack of sync {sigh}.

    From the site's page [pepper.com] on PK, it looks pretty good. Gotta try the download and see if it's better than my palm desktop.

  • by Maserati ( 8679 ) on Saturday September 11, 2004 @04:02AM (#10219696) Homepage Journal
    As a Mac user I've suspected it for years. There's a previously uncataloged meme on Slashdot, and it's spreading. It's the $300 PC meme. New iMac ? $300 PC Computer for the kids ? $300 PC No Linux games ? $300 PC New tablet computer ? You guessed it... Frank Stallone !
  • Re:Sounds nice... (Score:2, Interesting)

    by pipacs ( 179230 ) on Saturday September 11, 2004 @05:29AM (#10219850)
    I agree with you the trend is worrying, but I don't think shifting the responsibility to customers is the solution. It just shows in what a poor state the industry is today.

    There is a full-blown computer in my wireless access point, mobile phone, DVD player. Soon in my TV, my fridge, you name it. I don't want to be the system administrator of my fridge!

    Infrastructure, as you say, for distributing and installing security fixes is needed - but manufacturers will never invest into this unless forced to do so. So what we really need is security standards, extended customer protection, all enforced by regulations. NCAP crash tests for the home computer...

  • Re:Nice ad `Sean (Score:1, Interesting)

    by kjamez ( 10960 ) on Saturday September 11, 2004 @09:34AM (#10220368) Homepage
    good job /. editors for plugging this thing for Sean Hamor.

    News for nerds. Shills that matter.

    be honest here too, if you were an owner/parter/beneficiary or company A and company A produced exclusively a linux-bases tablet PC and you are just starting, what better way to expose that device to 5 million people (in a target audience, i might add) and hear feedback almost instantly in /.'s true holier-than-thou attitude. all these comments i am sure are looked at by `Sean and every company loves to hear both sides of some feedback. What harm does providing a link to a small company wanting to sell tech-devices on a tech-based website? The article said they were 'selling' them. There was no question. Why, then, because someone is selling something, does it not make it news-worthy? I personally LIKE hearing about all the ubergeek gadgets /. 'advertises' ... but moreover, i enjoy reading people's comments on them, to either validate or negate my initial thoughts on the matter.

    sorry- i just get tired of people bashing the editors for 'ads', when they aren't. ad's are those things that say 'free porn' when they are not, that pop-up when you visit a shady website, and open two more when you close it. That is an ad. This is text, talking about and linking to a device that you may or may not want to look at. You have that choice*.

    obligatory: * unless in soviet russia.
  • Re:Nice ad `Sean (Score:4, Interesting)

    by kalidasa ( 577403 ) * on Saturday September 11, 2004 @11:02AM (#10220637) Journal
    Ah, but he didn't come out and say that he was involved in the product. If someone sends something to Taco or Hemos saying "hey, we've got this great LINUX product I think /.ers would be interested in," I expect Taco or Hemos would post it. I would want them to post it. But I don't want any pretense.

How many NASA managers does it take to screw in a lightbulb? "That's a known problem... don't worry about it."