It’s Alive! (My Chumby)

Today, I hooked up my Chumby, named ‘Chumby Chumbing Rodriguez’ in honour of Futurama’s Bender. Here’s my out of the box experience:

  • Power – I needed a shaving adaptor to connect the 2-pin AC adaptor to a UK outlet and I couldn’t find the power button as it was stealthily concealed by a sticker (doh!).
  • Configuration – Touchscreen calibration and wifi discovery went OK, but Chumby couldn’t connect to its server. Guessing that the internal wifi radio was 802.11b only, I switched my network from ‘G-only’ to ‘Mixed’.
  • Stability – The screen flickered periodically; initially I thought this was a poor AC connection, but it turns out Chumby’s ambient light sensor was overly sensitive to my energy saving fluorescent bulbs. Tinkering with brightness settings while covering the sensor solved this problem.
  • Registration – registration and configurations of widgets worked without any problems.

Chumby worked as well as expected for an alpha appliance. The currently available catalogue of widgets is a little sparse and often buggy – Google News hangs Chumby, Flickr’s user setting doesn’t work – but as alpha testers, it’s really up to us Chumbians to address that. Great start – and very smart to launch at Foo Camp!

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