View Full Version : Nokia 770 and Slimserver First Impressions

2005-12-14, 14:24
I (finally) received my Nokia 770 yesterday. Some first impressions of the device, with special attention to it's use as a slimserver controller.

First, general impressions:

- Not a perfect device, but still very cool. I've found that when you use kid gloves, it works pretty well. If you try to open a bunch of apps at once and do more than one thing at a time, it's pretty easy to crash it.

- Screen is the best quality I've ever seen in a handheld device

- Tons of attention were given to ergonomic design and useful keys. My favorite is the full-screen key, which removes the left-nav bar and gives you more real estate instantly.

- RSS reader and Email app are being given much more negative press than they deserve. I'm fairly pleased with both as V1.0 apps.

- Video and Audio both work pretty darn well, IMO. I viewed the included trailer from Ice Age2 without difficulty, and it rendered very smoothly. Unfortunately for the IceAge2 folks, this will not compel me to see their movie. I'm curious to see how the video player will do with an episode of Freaks & Geeks or Deadwood, but the included 64MB RS-MMC card isn't gonna cut it for that. Will have to buy more storage before I can test that...

- 802.11 support is really well done. I haven't had a single issue with it, and it configured like a snap (note: haven't tried security stuff yet, but from what I hear it works fine)

- installing open-source apps (see http://maemo.org) is a snap. GAIM, xterm, bash, screenshooter, all have installed seamlessly and work great. The open-source aspect of this device is what made me buy this device immediately after it was release. The application catalog will only be growing...

But enough about the general...that stuff is covered pretty well in online reviews (I thought the ars-technica review was particularly well researched and written: http://arstechnica.com/reviews/hardware/nokia770.ars)

Slimserver-specific impressions:

- I tested 4 skins, Fishbone, ExBrowse3, Handheld, and Touch. I found "Touch" to be the far-and-away easiest to use on the 770. I have several screenshots that I'm going to upload to this thread.

- Fishbone and ExBrowse3, which are both mighty nice from a standard PC, don't really work on the 770. ExBrowse3 would often crash the browser (or in one case the whole device). Neither would actually play anything I commanded it to.

- BONUS -- turns out that slimserver streams *very* nicely to this device. Just point the included audio player to http://your.slimserver.ip.address:9000/stream.mp3, browse the 770 to your slimserver, and select your 770 as the player. Works great.

While I was fairly pleased with "Touch" as a skin for 770 use, there are some clear improvements to be made. I'm considering a fork of Touch to start optimizing a skin for the 770. I'd be really pleased if there were others that wanted to help, offer advice, offer requests, etc. on that effort.

screenshots coming forthwith...


Neil Sleightholm
2005-12-14, 14:36
I agree the touch skin would work well on the 770. I have been using the Handheld skin with increased font sizes.

If you wanted to look at updating the skin I would recommend starting with the 6.5 code base. It looks like creating skins may be easier and it isn't necessary for plugin developers to create skins for their plugins.


2005-12-14, 14:39
> - I tested 4 skins, Fishbone, ExBrowse3, Handheld, and Touch. I found
> "Touch" to be the far-and-away easiest to use on the 770. I have
> several screenshots that I'm going to upload to this thread.

What about Default?



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2005-12-14, 14:45
I haven't tried default, but will give it a shot.

The forums here are too restrictive on attachments (no complaints there, that's how I'd do it too), so I just whipped up a page of screenshots for public consumption:

thanks for the advice on skin development. Will try there first...