Letters

by Letters Editor
Useful and Exciting

I started reading the new issue of ELJ (March/April 2001) over coffee this morning after getting the kids out the door. I'm only at around the third article, and it's already been more interesting and directly useful to my professional work than any issue of Linux Journal that I can recall. As a 20-year OS and networking programming professional, when a magazine article gets me as excited as I was in college about computers, it's a rare and valuable gift.

I found Perens' ``Building Tiny Linux Systems with Busybox, Part 2'' particularly good because 1) it was not cloaked marketing; and 2) it very succinctly described the entire process (cookbook) of creating a tiny Linux bootable ramfs ``distribution''. This is something anyone that's developing embedded Linux needs to know.

Suggestion for future article: a cookbook article on configuring the kernel way down to fit in less than 1MB, in the style of Perens. This might include some minor code ``#ifdef notdef''. There are on-line discussions about this, but I'm sure a well-written article on the subject would help many. Keep up the good work.

--Neal Nuckolls

I/O Column?

You are always asking your readers for comments and suggestions for ELJ content, so I thought I'd throw in my two cents. Since a key aspect of embedded systems is communication with the outside world, I'd like to see a regular column devoted to I/O issues. I'm interested in articles that would talk about programming (C++), writing and using device drivers, etc., for serial ports, parallel ports, Ethernet ports, USB, FireWire, etc...from the Linux perspective. Thanks for listening.

--Jim Lauk

Linux-Friendly SBCs

I have just read with great interest [Rick Lehrbaum's] feature about Linux-friendly single-board computers (ELJ March/April 2001). Thanks for writing a very readable article that is packed with useful information and resources.

--Andy Ball

Bad Acronym

You've probably already got this, but in the ZapMedia article you mention a sound chip with 0.005% THD. THD was Total Harmonic Distortion not Total Hardware Distribution last time I checked audio specs.

--Thomas Dodd

I always thought that THD is an abbreviation for Total Harmonic Distortion. Well, I might have been wrong because in Don Marti's article, ``ZapMedia Zap Station / Harman Kardon DMC 100'', THD is explained as ``Total Hardware Distribution'' (whatever that means). Such a sad surprise in an otherwise pretty interesting magazine.

--Leszek Lechowicz

Our technical editor and author of the ZapMedia article, Don Marti, knows what THD is, but one of our copyeditors took a guess...a wrong one.

--Editor

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