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Tweaking the Palm Pre

OK, some background:

Palm released the Pre in June with a sort of a placeholder Application Catalog (App Store).  There was a small but useful set of apps there, and that's where it stayed, pretty much, for a few months.  Within a few weeks, people cleverer than I figured out how to "Root" the operating system, giving them the ability to add function or expose function already there but hidden by Palm (presumably so they can release it later, when it's ready or they are ready).  The process for doing this was somewhat complex, involving several arcane steps that mere mortals struggled to follow.  A clever but logical extension of this followed shortly thereafter:  apps to install apps.   They are called Filecoaster and Preware.  These allow the user to install these non-App Catalog apps (called "Homebrew" apps) directly from the Pre.

Important note:  it is unclear at this point if there is any way to preserve / back up the data stored in or created by these apps.   

The Application Catalog has been opened up, and it was recently noted that the small number of applications there have already generated over 8 million downloads.  The number of apps is increasing, but there is still an active Homebrew community, with many applications, tweaks, enhancements, and other goodies.

The nexus of all this stuff is a web site called PreCentral - www.precentral.net.  The Homebrew stuff is here:  http://www.precentral.net/homebrew-apps.

Of course, to get an app that installs apps, you have to install the app first!  That's the only tricky part.

Filecoaster is recommended as the first app, since it can download most of the rest of them.  The instructions for that starts here:  http://www.precentral.net/how-to-install-homebrew-apps.

The other app loading app is Preware.  It allows loading of apps, and also brings users a bunch of other stuff (tweaks, themes, other enhancements) that FileCoaster doesn't.  It's a little more difficult, but if you just follow the instructions (don't try to think - I tried that and it didn't work) you'll get it installed! 

Preware starts here: http://www.precentral.net/preware-update-integrates-and-enhances-patching-process.

I'll add more to this as I have time. 



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