I’ve started working on a new Meatfreezer Labs project, a DIY mobile phone.

I love the idea of carrying around a powerful computer in my pocket. My cell phone, however, fails to live up to that idea. Smartphones are closed gardens, and are largely passive consumption devices. To steal Bruce Sterling’s terms, phones are more “well behaved appliances” than “platforms for self expression.” I don’t want a TV in my pocket, I want a linux hotrod that I hot-wired up myself.

Well, that’s not what I want. So I’m going to make my own.

And I know how to make stuff. I can solder, read circuit diagrams, write software, 3d model, 3d print, etc. I can’t make as good of a phone as Apple or Google can, but I can make a phone that’s good enough for me. As a bonus, it won’t be a walled garden that I can’t control, a device designed to spy on me, or the product of an advertising company.

In the future I’ll write a bit about what I’ve found from the past few weeks of researching alternatives, software platforms, hardware options, etc. I’ll also continue to document my progress here.