HowTo: Sven-Ola's Debian Kit for Android

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HowTo: Sven-Ola's Debian Kit for Android

Postby SoulSingin » August 3rd, 2013, 7:52 pm

Because this HowTo already spans over 11 printed pages, I have moved it to my own site. While you're there, download my update of the installer for Debian Wheezy and check out my screenshots. Finally, for your printing convenience, I have also posted an earlier version of this HowTo in PDF format.

My own personal goals for this project are listed below. If they help you achieve your own goals, then please help others by posting your configurations and by contributing your own documentation. To that end, please leave suggestions in the discussion thread.

Motivation and Goals

The goal of this project is to help you turn your phone into a productive workspace. To achieve that goal, this project aims to document the steps necessary to install Debian on rooted Android phone using Sven-Ola Tuecke's Debian Kit.

More importantly, as this project evolves, it will also document some of the software tools that Debian makes available to you. After all, it is not the software application that makes you productive. It is knowing how to use that application that makes you productive. For that reason, this project aims to document both installation of Debian and some of the software that Debian provides, so that you can learn how to use Debian and become more productive in a Debian environment.

At the time of this writing (August 2013), it makes sense to study Debian for two reasons. First, many phones and tablets are powered by an ARM processor, which Debian has supported since its 2.2 ("Potato") release in 2000. Consequently, Debian already has a full range of applications for the devices that many people now carry in their pockets.

Second, in the near future, Ubuntu will launch a phone that is also a full computer. If their launch is successful, one of the near future's most common computing platforms will be Debian-based. For that reason, people who perform technical work need to know what what software tools will be available to them on a Debian system.

As an economist, I love the rich collection of Unix tools that a Debian system provides. For example, I can write one line of code that parse a large data file with awk and simultaneously edits it with sed. Such tools are invaluable for quickly preparing a simple dataset for analysis, while perl handles complex data structures with ease. For an economist, the beauty of a GNU/Linux system (such as Debian) is that all of these data processing are completely integrated, thus making it easy to assemble a dataset for econometric analysis.

Those are very rational reasons. The best reason to install Sven-Ola's Debian Kit is because this is fun. His installer puts a desktop computer in your pocket. Once installed, you can work on a spreadsheet while riding the bus or write an R script while riding the subway. ... But please put your phone away while driving. When you get home, you can dock your phone and work with it on the big screen.

Because your phone will be your computer, you will only need a phone. If you need a full-size screen and keyboard, just connect the phone to an old laptop via USB and use its screen and keyboard. Finally, note that by recycling hardware, this project saves you money and (in a small way) helps save the Earth.
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