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I am trying to develop an operating system for hardware manufacturers who might want to use it to for an e-book device. At the moment I have a prototype built ...
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  1. #1
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    How to build an OS like Android but for an e-ink based e-reader?


    I am trying to develop an operating system for hardware manufacturers who might want to use it to for an e-book device.
    At the moment I have a prototype built using Raspberry Pi and a small 2.7 inch e-ink display.

    I am able to write python programs that can parse a book in text file and write to the e-ink display using a python library that comes with the e-ink manufacturer.

    My goal is write a simple GUI so that users can select books they want to read. I have looked into existing GUI library for python but they are too complicated for e-ink display. And, usually these programs are not written for an embedded system in mind. I'd like to write an OS that can go to sleep mode easily when the book is close. The OS also should have low memory, CPU requirement.

    I think the Android OS is a good model to follow but maybe an overkill for what I am intend to do with my project. I am looking for suggestions on the approach. I also welcome any recommendations on existing framework, Linux distribution to look into.

    Here is more info about my project on github.com/obicho/ebook

  2. #2
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    There are a couple of Linux OS that run on Pi - i.e. Raspian and Pidora. Android is a heavily patched 2.6 Linux kernel that has several layers of software on top of it, such as the Dalvik Virtual Machine. Probably better off with an existing OS.

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    Thanks for your reply.

    Currently I am planning on using Raspian as OS. However I am wondering what would be a good choice for building GUI-based application framework on an e-ink display? I thought maybe using Python maybe a good idea. It is easy to learn and fast for development. However most python GUI widget libraries are build for large LCD display. Should I write my own GUI library then?



    Quote Originally Posted by gregm View Post
    There are a couple of Linux OS that run on Pi - i.e. Raspian and Pidora. Android is a heavily patched 2.6 Linux kernel that has several layers of software on top of it, such as the Dalvik Virtual Machine. Probably better off with an existing OS.

  4. #4
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    I thought it interesting enough to poke around but didn't find any out of the box type solutions. If you haven't seen this - it explains the model the river provides for power management, along with some other things: http://www.essentialscrap.com/eink/D...ays.pdf‎

    The kindle paper models use an embedded linux and the source is here: http://www.amazon.com/gp/help/custom...deId=200203720
    I see e-ink down the page and it could give you some ideas.

    There's a little bit here as well - drivers and some libs. It may be what you're using already: Driver and Examples | RePaper eInk Development Board for ARM + GNU/Linux | Adafruit Learning System

  5. #5
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    Hey this is great. Thank you for pointing me in this direction. I will take a look at the amazon src and see what I find.

  6. #6
    Super Moderator Roxoff's Avatar
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    What you're asking for already exists. An Android OS for an e-ink reader is already in use on millions of devices - the Barnes and Noble Nook uses it. If you root the device you can install the Google app store...

    I bought my Nook for about the same money as each of my Raspberries Pi
    Linux user #126863 - see http://linuxcounter.net/

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