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Om 2008 is one of the many distributions that currently work on the Openmoko phones. You can compare a distribution with an Operating System on normal computers. It gives the phone all the software needed for operating. For more information about the different flavors, see distributions.
Om 2008 was the third major revision of the Om distribution released by Openmoko. It was the sucessor to Om 2007.2 and had ASU as a codename.
Om 2008 uses EFL for the launcher, custom UI applications and Qtopia on X11 for telephony. The distribution was the first step from GTK+ on X11 , which was used on Om 2007.1 and Om 2007.2 to using multiple toolkits in combination.
Compared to 2007.2 that had a longer development history, Om 2008 was definitely a .0 major release. So think KDE 4.0 vs. 3.5, not Linux 2.6.23 vs. 2.6.22. There were daily updates, some good some bad.
What was new compared to 2007.2 ?
The main user-visible changes introduced in 2008 were:
- The user interface was fully revised with a new window manager illume. It is visually richer, and can be customized further by using Edje files.
- A graphical installer allows to easily add new applications, Themes and functionality.
- A new Locations application is provided, to save your favorite spots and share them with friends via sms.
- Power management has been improved: The Aux button now locks the screen, the Power button suspends and the red LED behind the Aux button lights up when charging.
- The keyboard was changed to the Qtopia one (whether this is an improvement has been hotly debated).
For developers, the main changes were:
- Multiple toolkits: Om 2008.8 supports EFL, Qtopia and GTK+ applications.
- A Community Repository has been set up, it is integrated in the (Installer).
- Source Codes are publicly available, allowing for customization all the way down to low level systems.