Topic: Local webserver?

How about giving us the code to make our own local webserver, plus detail the steps to edit the hosts file on the chumby firmware to redirect requests from it to our local webserver..
Why burden you guys.. this could actually be a great way of using Chumby devices in the enterprise. We can continue to create our own widgets and keep them private within our own networks..

I'd also like to have the ability to access all the old widgets too... is there a way you guys could zip em all up and put a torrent out there?

Re: Local webserver?

There'a already a web server in the device, or you can use this hack for something more complete.

The hosts file is standard, it lives in /psp and is persistent across boots.

There are several threads discussing the issue of why I cannot simply tar up the widgets - I don't own them.

Re: Local webserver?

I think what pelo88 is asking for is a way to run a "Chumby server" (i.e. what you, Duane, are running for all ~40k Chumbies out there) locally.  Widgets notwithstanding, how feasible would it be to do that?  I think it was discussed in another thread, but I'm not sure how far it went.

Re: Local webserver?

Well the server code, even for the stub is quite large.  For testing, I run it in a Linux virtual image, which is the same environment as the real server.

If I were to create one for personal use, I'd probably put something together in node.js

As I mentioned in the other thread - this was developed quickly, without the partitioning of "clean" code and the proprietary services for the various third parties, particularly for the music sources.  While I could spend the time to make it "clean", I think my time would be better spent restoring the full service, and leave the offline/local stuff to third parties for now.

Zurk's firmware is basically a lighttpd with a bunch of small scripts that respond to the requests in a manner similar to the real server, with a hosts file that points all of the chumby domains back to localhost.

Re: Local webserver?

Maybe it would be worth documenting on the wiki what requests/responses are expected between the Chumby and the server, using Zurk's code as a reference with clarification from Duane?

Re: Local webserver?

Hosts file I use: localhost.localdomain localhost

If you want to take a peek at my current setup I've zipped up my latest USB stick & you can d/l it here - quite simple - as Duane mentioned above: a few config files, scripts, a local controlpanel & my widgets: …

Unfortunately I don't easily have the option of wiresharking a chumby booting normally, or I'd document the responses for you.

Re: Local webserver?

servalan wrote:

Unfortunately I don't easily have the option of wiresharking a chumby booting normally, or I'd document the responses for you.

That's a really good idea... I'll have to see if I can fire up some of my Chumbies and do something like that smile

Re: Local webserver?

I think I was misunderstood, tho some attempt has already been made to clarify on my behalf somewhat successfully.

I understand the legality of the copyright. The original holder went out of business over a year ago and yet these apps were still fully functioning and available by some legally binding (I assume) transfer of rights to do so to the volunteers who kept the site up until recently. Now Blue Octy owns those rights. With no less than 2 transfers, I say the legally binding rights of who hosts and serves those apps are ripe for revisiting. There's absolutely nothing forcing Blue Octy into honoring the same agreement Chumby originally made indefinitely. Blue Octy could (and should) force all app developers to choose either a GPL model with their apps to make them akin to plugins to a WordPress or Joomla site -- allowing the Blue Octy to not be the only one hosting and serving those apps, or be subject to Blue Octy's new terms and conditions for Blue Octy themselves to host the apps -- such as fees or an ad revenue sharing model, etc.

Blue Octy is now faced with the developing the marketplace just as Chumby was. It remains to be seen as to whether this will go well -- it certainly didn't for Chumby.

Stifling the community from being able to create their own development hosting servers with ways to make their chumby's use them instead of looking to will eventually make everyone owning one of these amazing curiosities just give up.

Even without apps (or with just apps that are GPL with developer permission to be served/hosted anywhere, and I know there are a couple developers like that), give us a tarball of the site and let's all tap into zurk's brain to figure out a user friendly way to make any chumby use any server we want, and not just!

Re: Local webserver?

I guess what I'd love to see is a firmware like zurks but ONLY changing the hosts file to point to a server of our choosing -- like a setting right on the chumby.
Then I'd like to see a webserver, maybe like zurks or even better like, that can be deployed easily on an apache or apache tomcat webserver.

I think the best thing can do is make that marketplace I mentioned. Put up ways for developers to get paid the way Joomla does with the JED, and take a cut to fund the site and put some fricken ads up on here too. Can't hurt.

Re: Local webserver?

@pelo88- I think you've got some fresh thoughts, but might be making an error in scale at times. We're not looking at a system like Joomla with their 30 million downloads. Chumby has a user base of about 40,000 which can only shrink as units die. I also suggested using advertising until someone mentioned that the total ad revenue from the Chumby Android app was $27. I'm afraid that *we* are the revenue base.

And I'm afraid you might be misunderstanding the concern here about widget authors' rights. It's not just a legal or financial thing. It's also about protecting the "intellectual property" of the authors. Very few of the widgets had any commercial branding, they were just expressions of the authors creativity. It sounds simplistic, but they weren't sold to Chumby, just lent, under a particular set of guidelines. In the past, some authors have disagreed with the way Chumby was operating or the way their widgets functioned, and they pulled their widgets. I think that's the kind of right Blue Octy is concerned with protecting now.

Re: Local webserver?

Scale is relative only to how Blue Octy envisions the future of their company. There is no reason that the Android app is the only other method of delivering Chumby's widgets. There can be a Windows 8, an iOS app, or a WordPress, Drupal, or even Joomla plugin. Even the Android app itself could be re-imagined for larger screens. They would be supported by Blue Octy to always be optimizing chumby widget performance/delivery/capability. There could be paid vs ad-supported free versions. Heck I could see Blue Octy partnering with One Laptop Per Child by way of getting them to include a Linux powered Chumby app pre-installed in their laptops with a shortcut to the marketplace pre-set in the browser.

Assuming Blue Octy still retains the permission to deliver and host the widgets that were developed this would all be consistent. If they don't then what the hell are we talking about, the platform already died because the developers would rather not let their work be experienced by anyone anymore.

If we're also assuming Blue Octy has no plans on growing the community of chumby users either by re-engaging the manufactures of the actual devices or by developing more Chumby apps like the Android, then again, what the hell are we talking for, this entire project has already failed and Blue Octy wasted their money.

I'm hoping there's some way to salvage the community of developers that already exists, as small as it may be, and growing that community by opening up the platform itself to allow folks to self-host. Joomla would never have become the behemoth it is (last I checked the #2 most used CMS in the world) if it forced everyone to use to host their websites.

I'm hoping too that Blue Octy plans on also growing the relationships with existing app vendors. Why couldn't there be an official Namco Tamogotchi widget for Chumby? Tamogotchi L.I.F.E. was just released on Android a couple months ago and it could probably be ported to a purely FLV version capable of running on a Chumby.

Why can't the Chumby widget platform become a marketplace like the JED? Hell with 40,000 users we probably already beat those using the Blackberry World storefront, lol.

Why can't non-smartphones capable of just running simple Java apps come with a new java Chumby app preinstalled from the dealings Blue Octy has made with device manufacturers. Blue Octy could be positioning themselves to make non-smartphones not so dumb. These widgets could be the keys to making those cheap devices much more powerful. Think of the userbase then. Don't forget too, this is a global economy. VERY few people in China can afford actual iPhones and instead settle for crappy Android knock-offs if they can even afford them. WAY more people settle for non-smart phones.

Heck I could see Blue Octy making themselves ripe to be bought out by Oracle in under 3 years, just so Oracle retains the ability to push more powerful and more relevant java-powered devices out into the marketplace. Everyone in high tech is chomping at the bit to make appliances everywhere in the home smart. Washers, refrigerators, hot water tanks, circuit breaker boxes, all of them are ripe for an overhaul using touchscreens displaying information from their attached sensors and doing something smart with them. Yes the premium ones will be powered by Android or developed with a proprietary system like the touch screens in cars. But there will ALWAYS be a marketplace for a player to bring basic smart-ish functionality to such devices at a lower cost. I'd love a panel on my washing machine that is powered by Chumby. I could see the recently revamped Furby to sport Chumby accessories. I've seen robots powered by Chumby on YouTube.

I think the potential of this device is only limited by the imaginations of Blue Octy. Sure there are gotchas. Chumby probably had some of these very same ideas I listed above, but ran out of money. Hopefully Blue Octy fairs better.

Hopefully Blue Octy isn't just waiting to see if someone with deeper pockets wants to take this all over with the plans on just shutting down if that doesn't happen within a year.

Even if all of this does fail, I see absolutely no reason not to release a pre-packaged web server capable of hosting newly developed chumby apps (or ones existing developers freely allow folks to use on their own servers) and a corresponding firmware for the chumby that can use such a user created server.