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somebody9 somebody9 is offline
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Default An Open Letter to Dell - 01-18-2011, 12:41 AM

An Open Letter To Dell

( from the active Open Source Community for Android/Dell Streak )

Hello Dell,

Let me start this letter by making it clear that we are not here to complain about your products or your services. In fact, if we didn't like your product – the community wouldn't have bothered to send this letter to you guys ( you can find most of us littered across freenode on IRC and on XDA, MoDaCo, Pocketables and CyanogenMod to name a few ).

Secondly, let me state that I am not a developer. I am just a basic user. That's right. This is not a letter from some guy who stays up late for the joy of hacking your devices. I haven't coded anything in years, and I don't think I could make a Hello World program in Java if my life depended on it. Why am I telling you this? Because I want you to know that this is a plea coming to you from an ordinary customer who spent around $600 on your device. There's a lot more ordinary customers and potential customers out there like me who you can win over or possibly convince towards their next purchase if you start doing the right thing. This isn't a letter from just those pesky developers on those nosy websites.

We love your products. In particular, we love the Dell Streak. At least the hardware component of it. The Streak is perfectly positioned between tablet and phone. The amount of success you've had in convincing consumers that this is so is debatable, but all of us definitely love the form factor and the hardware that you've blessed this device with. The SnapDragon 8250, the 5” screen and the rear speaker are all brilliant.

Unfortunately, the software that comes with the Streak doesn't do it justice. Just today Stephen Hyde brought this device to register around 2300 ( nice and stable ) on Quadrant Advanced when it's not even overclocked ( 3300 when it is ). But we're not trying to show you how to do things. We're not trying to steal your developers' jobs and we're not trying to steal your work. We're asking you to let us help you, that's all; when you released the Dell Streak, it was running what appeared to be an arcane love-child between Android 1.6 and Windows 95. It was slow and behind other machines of it's time. The sad part was that the Streak's hardware was and is a beast capable of so much more.

A lot of you at Dell whom we've had contact with will admit that our ROMs for the Streak are infinitely faster and better. Are we asking to be given jobs and a pay cheque? No. In fact, we are asking you to take our code and use it to make your code better. Go ahead, take it. What do we want in return? Nothing.

It would be nice however, if you gave us some of the code to look at. We're not quite sure whether this code is GPL, Apache or whatever. We're the people who help your customers not just troubleshoot their devices but also upgrade them to cutting edge Android releases. All we're asking is for you to release the code in the spirit of Open Source cooperation. The point being, we're asking for your code to make your devices better. Isn't that a win-win situation? We do the work to improve your code to make your product better !

What we want is libaudio, libmedia, libsurfaceflinger and libaudioflinger. These are all pretty simple things. It's not like we're asking you to divulge the formula for Coca-Cola ( kind of stupid since you're definitely not Coca-Cola ) nor are we asking for something dangerous. We just want to improve our audio and our input. What's the worst that could happen.

So here it is. If you're a developer at Dell, do the right thing. If you're middle-management at Dell then remember, HTC and Motorola both have a developer community that's a hundred, if not a thousand fold larger than yours because you don't embrace us.

We love your device and we're hoping that Dell will do the right thing.

- Manas Shukla ( Somebody9 on XDA/MoDaCo, dont_panic on Twitter )
on behalf of Stephen Hyde, Ian Fardoe and hundreds of other StreakDroid Users online and in the Android Open Source Community


If you are StreakDroid user and want to help us to continue to upgrade and support DJ_Steve's StreakDroid please Retweet this Link on Twitter and Facebook with the hashtag #dell and #streakdroid
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oklahemi oklahemi is offline
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