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It's a bad news/good news situation

Well the bad news is I got paid. Why is that bad? I'm working less night hours so the extra pay (25%) is only from 9pm-11.30pm, or 9pm-12.30am (alternate weeks).
Now subtract €320 for my other account for the bills there (car loan, Internet, medical), plus another hundred for the 'leccy bill, plus another hundred paying off from the cambelt change, plus another two hundred for the other half of that damn habitation tax they dropped on us last month (cough up €400 in four weeks, WTF?).
This leaves practically diddly/squat.

So in a way I guess it's a good thing I think Christmas sucks. This Dec 25th I won't be celebrating. Can't afford it. Can't even settle down to watch telly, if it's anything like the last couple of years when the best things on were the Dr. Who special and a cringeworthily-bad film on Horror, like "Santa Slay" or somesuch.


Now for the good...



I've been looking, for a while, to get Linux running here. That's when I stumbled across Portable Ubuntu.
Getting the "TRES" version working is a minor challenge, but after poking "-nolock" into the run_X batch file and moving the lot to the root directory of my SD card... works.
Okay, pretty slowly, but it's a genuine Linux co-existing... not just with Windows, but within windows.
Come on. How awesome is this, really? This, I feel, is where computing ought to be heading. It almost did with Java. You see, you have a "favourite" application, some bit of software you're found of, and your computer will run it. No whinges about missing DLLs, no "oh crap this is an ELF executable". Maybe even no "WTF? this is ARM code and I'm an x86!". If the machine is capable, it should run it. Windows, Android, X... we can pick the tools that suit is best and the world will move onto a hybrid of the best bits of the operating systems featured, dropping the cruft along the way.
In a way, CoLinux and portable Ubuntu show that while the technical challenges may be plentiful, there's no excuse for why a Linux application can't run on Windows except "lack of interest by the developers". Indeed, the other way (via WINE) has been around for quite a while.
Should I point out it can do cut'n'paste too?
Or that this is being written not in MetaPad like normal, but in gedit (which does code colouring, sweet!).

Heres the all-important screenshot:

Ubuntu running under Windows, yes, really!

This has permitted me to look to doing something with the Neuros OSD source codes. Like I said, it isn't very quick, but it works:

Copying a file.

After installing some patches and stuff, I was able to attempt to build the OSD firmware. Now the kernel and uboot appeared to compile okay. It just fell over when trying to build curl, telling me that a directory didn't exist. Correct, but only a few lines earlier in the makefile, it should have been created. Go figure.

I did, however, try building up a binary. A really simple little bit of code to print an on-screen message:

The executable in action.
It might not look like much (and it isn't, a 4K file that spits a printf() statement), but we managed to extract a working ARM executable from a Linux compiler running under a Windows environment. Not bad, huh?

You can read my full detailed writeup on the Neuros forum (no need to register to read).


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