As I post here previously, I went to Sapo Codebits event in the last week, with my friends. The first day of the event and the morning of the second day was only conferences, the rest of the event was several contests, including a 24-hours programming contest.
In the first day of the event I met Marcus Bauer, the TangoGPS creator, he shown some OpenMoko phones there and also gave a presentation about OpenMoko, he shown me how to install debian in a freerunner in a few minutes, using the Hackable1 distro, a very cool and easy way to try out debian on the neo SD card.
I participated in the 24-hours programming competition, my idea was turn my freerunner in a mouse and gamepad (like the wiimote) using the accelerometers. My knowledge about the accelerometers are very low, so I started getting the accelerometers data with a Python script to see the data behavior. I noticed a wrong behavior when I turn my freerunner quickly, the accelerometer seems to stall, after a quick search in the ML archive I found that some kernel’s have this behavior, so I flash my freerunner with some old kernel’s until found a stable kernel. The accelerometer mouse required a lot of work until I get a smooth mouse movement. I also don’t knew that the acelerometers are very sensitive, and the data for the accelerometer suffer changes even if the freerunner are steady in a table. The gamepad accelerometer required less work, I used some of the ReMoko code with a few changes in the event sending methods, in order to send continues key presses, to the freerunner acts like a really gamepad. In the morning when I had my project almost completed, after some hours without sleep, I broken the BlueZ libs in my laptop, after doing a stupid mistake in the cross compiling process, this cost me about a hour to put everything in place again:). But I found some time to wrote a beta UI for my project and gave the project the silly name: AccelMoko.
After the competition ends, starts the presentation session of the projects developed during the event, the participants have only 90 seconds to present the projects to the judge and audience, when one participant finish the time another participant starts talking, in a non stop way, 82 projects enter in the contest this year (small games, web stuff, ideas …). My project was in the 20th position, my presentation had a very good feedback from the audience (they have a live voting system, with two choices “I like” and “I don´t like”). When all the participants finished there presentation, the judge gathered for about a hour to decide the winning projects.
To be sincere, I only participate in contest in a “sportive” way, I don’t had any hope to win, but… my project was the most voted by the audience and also I got the first place in the judge votes . So a OpenMoko project wins the Sapo Codebits 2008 competition.
In the next weeks I will merge the AccelMoko code into the ReMoko project.