Detailed description of Squeak on Nokia 770 [Long!]

stephane ducasse stephane.ducasse at
Tue Oct 10 10:08:37 UTC 2006

This is cool to know.
On 10 oct. 06, at 05:44, Aaron Reichow wrote:

> Hola again everyone!
> This is a very long post. I am posting it here because I feel  
> others might
> find it useful.  If anyone thinks I should polish this and post it  
> on the
> wiki, please tack that onto a reply or send me a personal message.   
> I'm
> not sure if this kind of information matters to many folks.  I  
> suppose it
> could be worked up into a more recent and detailed description of  
> Squeak
> on the PDA- qualitatively, its current status, etc.
> -<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>
> Below are my impressions of running Squeak on the 770 with various
> images. It is an incredibly un-scientific study- no profiling, no stop
> watch, nothing fancy.  Not quite apples and oranges, but pretty close
> sometimes. What I'm trying to convey is to those considering using  
> this
> specific device for Squeak, like Stef D, and to those who haven't used
> Squeak on a PDA or other slow/embedded device what it *feels*  
> like.  If
> anyone wants other information- any kind of benchmark, running a  
> certain
> task, tool or app do not hesitate to let me know.
> 1. The first image I tried was Kevin Fischer's TinySqueak.image  
> (6.5 MB),
> which is 3.1alpha. Considering the slowness of the CPU, it ran  
> quite well-
> while I didn't remember all the strokes, I am very happy to report  
> that
> the character recognition using Genie and the dictionary of strokes  
> that
> Kevin put in for this image was faster and more accurate than the sad
> excuse for HWR, written in C/GTK+, that comes with the 770.
> -<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>
> 2. The second image I tried was 3.9g-7061 (16.5 MB).  This was  
> slow, but
> not as slow as I had expected.
> Some metrics for 3.9g: If I quickly highlight a paragraph of text in a
> workspace by tapping somewhere and dragging down, it takes about a  
> second
> after I've pulled the stylus up. The world menu takes about two  
> seconds to
> come up.  If you'be a System Browser open, and click on a category  
> with
> only one class in it- for instance EToys-Buttons- it is about 2  
> seconds
> between tap and seeing the class show up.  About three seconds between
> tapping the class and seeing the list of method categories and methods
> show up. Two to three seconds for a method's code to show up when the
> method is tapped.
> I'd like to point out that this is not slowness with Squeak, but with
> Morphic. The same tests on the same image done in MVC are all instant-
> even the Browser tests, which are doing some thinking outside of  
> drawing
> the Morphs.
> -<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>
> 3. Shrunken2.image (4.4 MB), which is from, something
> according to my filesystem is from November 2004. It is a 3.6-based  
> image.
> So, probably not the best for testing Tweak, but I had it on hand.  It
> must be a VM/prims thing- whenever I've tried Tweak on a CE or  
> Pocket PC
> machine, performance has been beyond hideous, even on a machine with a
> powerful 624 MHz XScale CPU.  On this lowly 220 MHz CPU it is way  
> faster.
> Some things seem faster than the 3.9g Morphic image, but it might  
> be a bit
> unfair/not useful to compare two images of difference sizes, versions,
> etc- Tweak vs Morphic won't be the only factor. But, I report as a  
> user,
> and I call 'em as I see 'em.
> Metrics for this 3.6 Tweak image: Three seconds from tap to File menu
> coming up.  A lot of things felt pretty fast, considering the CPU  
> speed. I
> was surprised and impressed.  Dragging Morphs (what are they called in
> Tweak? I'm sorry, I'm really completely unedumatcated on Tweak) is  
> smooth.
> Clicking on stuff in a Class Browser is definately faster than I  
> described
> with the 3.9g image in Morphic. Tweak defiantely warrants some more
> investigation on my part for using on a PDA.
> -<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>
> 4. I tried one of my old Dynapad development images, a 2.8-based image
> that is 5.4 MB.  Man, this is the Squeak I remember.  I've even got
> Henrik's awesome Bluelook installed, so it looks great too. If you  
> want to
> have a look at it, I've got the image up.  This image has a handful of
> PDA-friendly features.  However, you're going to want to crank up the
> fonts for use on the Nokia, because it has some tiny ones now,  
> meant for
> QVGA devices.  This is image is incredibly usable, though ancient.  
> Though,
> gauging from the questions and comments I've heard on the #squeak irc
> channel, not as ancient as people might think- it has a great deal  
> of what
> we know as Squeak these days.
> -<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>
> 5. Next up, my personally configured 3.2 image (10 MB).  This  
> image, nor
> surprisingly, is between the speed of 2.8 and the features of 3.9a. If
> anything, I was quite surprised to see how relatively fast 3.1a felt
> compared to the 3.1a image I talked about in #1.
> -<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>-<>
> Overall, I'd say I was pretty happy with the performance, it was
> definately better than I expected (dreaded?). However, this is me-  
> a guy
> who has sought to use Squeak on PDAs from pretty much the first time a
> consumer could do so- in 1999/2000 with the 66 MHz MIPS-based VTech  
> Helio,
> all the way up to whatever new Linux, vanilla WinCE or PocketPC/ 
> Windows
> Mobile device I can get my hands on, which came with CPUs between  
> 206 MHz
> StrongARMs to 624 MHz XScales.  And, to the surprise of some, I've  
> used
> Morphic for all my PDA Squeaking with the exception of the VTech  
> Helio.
> CPU usage was pretty high- 75% or so while idling.  However, I have  
> been
> very impressed by the battery life of this thing.  The screen has  
> been off
> for most of the time- I've been doing testing via SSH and VNC, with  
> the
> screen off.  At the same time, the CPU has been quite high, and the  
> wifi
> connection has been in use the whole time.  I've been doing this  
> testing
> for 3 hours- with Squeak idling and using CPU for most of that  
> time- but
> the battery meter still reads as having 4 out of 4 bars. I'm quite
> surprised- the marketing says 3 hours of browse time, but between this
> evening of testing and my use of it up to this point for web  
> browsing and
> ebook reading, I've been getting way better battery life than that.
> A big advantage that a Linux device has over a CE device is memory
> management.  On CE it can be a hassle to get bigger images to work  
> because
> of the way memory management works.  But I've never had a problem  
> running
> bigger images (15-20 MB or so is big to me!) on Linux, where I have  
> on CE.
> There are trade offs for either system.  Anyway, I hope this gave  
> folks
> who care an idea of what the Nokia is like running Squeak, especially
> newer images.
> to play with Squeak on his Nokia!...
> Regards,
> Aaron
> revaaron at || rev in #squeak on
>    "Liberty will not descend to a people, a people must
>          raise themselves to Liberty." -- Emma Goldman

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