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Maemo is a computer architecture platform built on desktop open source components. It is aimed at enabling applications and innovative technology for mobile handheld devices.

The platform is based on the GNU/Linux operating system and the GNOME desktop. Maemo brings developers an easy to use development environment. Its optimized Hildon UI is customized for the screen size and usage typical for a touch screen enabled handheld device. The development platform is targeted at innovative developers and organizations developing applications and new technologies for the mobile space. Utilizing the maemo platform it is easy to mobilize existing desktop solutions. Maemo enables various business models on the top of the platform, including proprietary application distribution.

Maemo, first introduced in 2005, is one of the core platforms for Nokia’s high-end products. Today maemo is the basis of the OS used in a range of Wi-Fi enabled Internet Tablets. The Internet Tablet models on market are the Nokia N800 and the new Nokia N810. Maemo has reached a level of functionality to provide a full Internet experience in pocket sized device – with an intuitive UI.

The maemo platform currently offers a native C runtime for developers, complemented by officially supported C++ bindings. A complete set of Python bindings are provided by the community. Web run-time with Mozilla Gecko engine and Flash 9 will also be implemented in 2008. Mono, Java and Ruby run-times are provided by the maemo community, among others.

The maemo SDK creates a sandboxed maemo development environment on a GNOME/Linux desktop system. The sandboxed environment is built principally on a tool called Scratchbox. In most ways this environment behaves like the operating system on the device, but with added development tools. This means that the development process is very similar to normal desktop Linux and GNOME/GTK+ development and the unique features of embedded development, such as cross-compiling, are handled transparently by Scratchbox.

Maemo 4 Quick Start Guide is a good general introductory document to the maemo platform. It introduces you to valuable information, such as the maemo architecture, UI development, system services, development environment, how to port existing software, and many other topics.

If you are familiar with Symbian or .Net development, you should have a look at this: maemo for mobile developers

Forum Nokia offers various technical support services for developers who work on maemo platform.

Key Technologies

Hildon GTK DBUS Matchbox Kdrive Python SDL Mono

External links
Some screenshots of the Hildon UI


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