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SteamBox: Sabayons version of the Steam Machine

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So while Valve Software is still working on the Steam Machine, you can download this edition of Sabayon Linux, burn it to a DVD (it’s a 1.4 GB ISO file) or transfer it to a USD stick, boot it from any computer, and enjoy your “Steam Machine.” read more...
permapage | score:9969 | -finid, May 13, 2014

Can we all agree with the Linux Deepin way of innovation?

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The same principle, in my view, applies, or should apply, to Linux on the desktop. End-users first. Give users a distribution that just works, so that they can get stuff done without needing to learn how the system works. Of course, those who need to get digital grease on their hands have the option to do just that, if that’s what they want. read more...
permapage | score:9969 | -finid, April 28, 2014

CyanogenMod, the rest of the story

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To outsiders like me, the announcement of the formation of Cyanogen, Inc. was a bit of a surprise. And the fact that the company succeeded in raising millions of venture capital (VC) funds was even more surprising. read more...
permapage | score:9968 | -finid, March 24, 2014

Pre-release Ubuntu 12.10 has partial support for manual LVM and disk encryption

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Today, I took another look at a daily build of Ubuntu 12.10 to see how far the coders have come in implementing manual LVM and disk encryption. Here is what I found: read more...
permapage | score:9787 | -finid, September 27, 2012

I quit using Linux because…

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Once in a while, a prominent or not so prominent member of the Linux community makes a switch – for one reason or the other – to another operating system, usually to Mac OS X. The latest is Denis Koryavov, the former GUI Development lead for ROSA Laboratory, a Linux software solutions provider based in Russia and the publisher of ROSA Linux. read more...
permapage | score:9746 | -finid, August 13, 2013

Usability, user-friendliness and the Linux desktop

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He makes a somewhat valid point, but he’s attempting to draw a hard boundary between usability and user-friendliness, forgetting that one derives from the other. If you build a “usable” system, people will tend to say that it is “user-friendly,” regardless of the technical capabilities of the users. read more...
permapage | score:9728 | -finid, September 6, 2013

Currency Traders Telnet Game

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A new, large Currency Traders game is up. To connect enter the following command from an xterm, konsole, or other terminal/command line window:

[link removed]

It runs on port 23, just like traditional telnet. It's free to play and no software is required to play. All you need is an internet connection.

This is an old-school, no-graphics strategy game. All you need is a telnet client to play -- and every modern operating system comes with one. It's free and you can play anonymously. Just choose a name and a password and log in. If you don't know what to do, just press your H key for a Hint and a context-sensitive Tip.

This game is played in a persistent world where whatever you build, buy, or otherwise 'acquire' in the game will still be there tomorrow. Unless you make an enemy of another player, that is. PVP (player-versus-player) is always enabled here so other players can attack your deployed fortifications -- or even, heaven forbid, you.

This is a turn-based game that can be played any time of the day, night, or week. Each player is issued a certain amount of energy (turns) per day that is used to travel, trade, or play at the arcade in the several Malls. If you don't use your turns, they accumulate for as much as several months -- so there's no disadvantage to skipping a day or even a few weeks.


(Try the [read more] link if you want to see something similar, a text-based mmorpg)
read more...
mail this link | permapage | score:9659 | -Ray, January 23, 2013 (Updated: May 13, 2014)

This is not just about your personal privacy

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To those people, there’s nothing you can say to convince them that a violation of privacy is a violating of privacy, whether the victim(s) have something to hide or not. But worse than that, they fail to see that this matter has implications that go beyond personal privacy. read more...
permapage | score:9556 | -finid, September 7, 2013

Install Apache2, PHP5, MySQL on CentOS 5.7

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LAMP is short for Linux, Apache, MySQL, PHP. This tutorial shows how you can install an Apache2 webserver on a CentOS 5.7 server with PHP5 support (mod_php) and MySQL support. read more...
permapage | score:9462 | -falko, December 11, 2011

Linux dominates Windows

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Linux dominates Windows -- and everything else -- on supercomputers in 2010. Microsoft's renowned engineering quality and down-to-earth pricing shows brilliantly in its capturing 1% of the top 500 supercomputer projects. Perhaps next year, utilizing all the organizational pressure they can bring to bear, they can retain 0.8%.

Formal Unix, now long dead*, controls 4.4%. Meanwhile, Linux is now installed on 91% of the remaining 95% of top systems. Add in the single BSD system and you have Unix-like systems (Unix+Linux+BSD) accounting for 95.6% of the top supercomputer projects. The remaining 3.4% of are 'mixed' systems and may also contain significant percentages of Unix and Linux.

There are many reasons for Linux' success. Among the top factors are surely these four, in no particular order:
  • Price (starting at free)
  • Quality (excellent code, Unix-based design)
  • Hardware Support (most all modern quality gear is supported)
  • Open Source (open to tinkering -- and redistributable)
Check my math on the top 500 systems here.

*Of course, counting functional Unix systems while ignoring the trademarked term, Unix is clearly not dead since Linux is one of the truest of the true Unix work-alike systems. Linux is, of course, the reason formal Unix has suffered such a precipitous decline. Many Unix users just switched flavors -- and Linux was a most appealing flavor.
mail this link | permapage | score:9439 | -Ray, June 2, 2010

The problem with NoSQL databases

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Ultimately, using a NoSQL database will have an impact on the adoption of Free Software Web applications that use such a database. If you are trying to develop a Web application, that’s something to think about. read more...
permapage | score:9434 | -finid, July 26, 2013

ARM-based EMB-2500: Like Raspberry Pi, but much better

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With the EMB-2500, SATA storage connectivity has come to an ITX form-factor, single-board SoC computer. read more...
permapage | score:9420 | -finid, April 30, 2013

Librenix T-Shirts and Coffee Mugs!

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For today's example of my (semi)elite C programming skilz, I submit for your inspection the Librenix T-Shirts! Yes, I created the images on these shirts and coffee mugs entirely with C code. While the code isn't up to the standards *cough* of my open source Space Tyrant project, at least the output is colorful and not entirely textual!


click either image to see the T-Shirts, Coffee Mugs, etc.

(If you like the images but don't care for 'librenix' on your shirt, these same styles are available for all 50 US state names as well as with the signs of the zodiac here)

(and here are some modern prints)
mail this link | permapage | score:9394 | -Ray, June 6, 2010 (Updated: May 13, 2014)

Missing the point of the Mac Mini

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I've read several articles and numerous comments over the past week detailing just how overpriced Apple's new Mac Mini is. Reviewers seem to conclude that because they can assemble a PC of similar performance to the Mini for less money, that the new Mac simply costs too much.

What they have not done, however, is duplicate the Mac Mini in any important way. The closest comparison I've seen pitted the Mini against a machine 2.5 times its size. At least that reviewer understood that size matters. I'm a fan of small systems. I own 2 Biostar iDEQ cubes, one Shuttle, and three Book PC's. The Book PC's are the oldest and most obsolete, of course, with the fastest one containing a Pentium III 667. I've gotten rid of several systems over the past two years that were faster than the Book PC's. Why keep the slower computers while getting rid of systems up to twice as fast, you might ask.

I've kept the Book PC's because they are so small that keeping them around isn't a burden. They take about as much space on a bookshelf as an unabridged dictionary. I have one, currently disconnected, functioning only as a monitor stand for the system I'm using right now. A book PC will fit in my briefcase; I've hauled them around with me as if they were laptops. With a dozen computers around the house, space is precious and small is beautiful.

The Book PC's are 3.2" x 10.5" x 11.9". That's 4.8 times the volume of a Mac Mini. The Mac is truly tiny. I've worked to build fast, small, quiet Linux systems for years now. The iDEQ 200V is the cheapest system I've made that is fast, quiet, and runs Linux without complaint. Without software and with only the on-board graphics chip, it cost about the same amount as the Mac Mini. At 12.5" x 7" x 8", however, it is much larger than the Mini and weighs several times as much.

I challenge the anti-Mini crowd to build a PC of any shape that displaces approximately the same volume as the Mini plus power supply. Then, compare prices again. The SFF computer fans are clearly going to notice this machine and are going to buy a few truckloads of them. In the small form factor (SFF) computer market, even ignoring the software, this machine is clearly a bargain.

SFF computer fans who are committed to Windows will still covet this system; a few of them might even make the switch to OS X just to get one. I even expect some SFF Linux geeks to buy them because they're tiny, cheap, and can run Linux. Conclusion: the anti-Mini reviewers and posters are not SFF people.

Next, the Mini is an affordable and typically stylish Mac. A smallish PC does not run OS X. The Mini comes with OS X and will make a great second (or third) computer for many Mac users. I use Linux as my primary desktop OS (SuSE 9.2 Professional for the last three weeks, Fedora Core 2 the previous year) and FreeBSD and Linux (Fedora, Slackware) for my servers. I'm hardly a Mac guy but, as a Unix geek, I'm perfectly fine with OS X. I used a Mac as my primary desktop for a couple of weeks after a recent move.

Many Mac users -- at least those who need a second system -- will find the price -- and the size -- of this system quite appealing. Clearly, the negative reviewers and posters are not OS X users.

Therefore, I've come to the conclusion that these anti-Mac Mini arguments are coming from people who appreciate neither of the core characteristics of the machine. They don't understand the appeal of the SFF systems market, nor are they OS X / Mac users.

Apple, on the other hand, appreciates both and they have produced an impressively priced small form factor OS X system.

I wish for Apple responsive suppliers with scalable production facilities. They will surely need them in order to satisfy the demand for the Mac Mini.
mail this link | permapage | score:9338 | -Ray, January 21, 2005

Microsoft Surface RT is an Unmitigated Disaster

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And after the company successfully locked out Linux distributions from ARM tablets running Windows RT, any bad news streaming from Steve Ballmer’s office is sweet music to my ears. read more...
permapage | score:9334 | -finid, August 16, 2013

Google Chromecast and the new Nexus 7

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The Chromecast is not an original idea, but are their any original ideas left in this arena. Cynically, the question is, how many backdoors are there in this thing? read more...
permapage | score:9313 | -finid, July 25, 2013

Does disk encryption really protect your data?

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Disk encryption is one of several physical security measures that could be used to protect data on your computer from unauthorized physical access. And it is best configured during installation, not after. But once configured, how effective is it? read more...
permapage | score:9311 | -finid, December 11, 2011

CoolShip Android all-in-keyboard computer

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But this one is unlike other Android units. It’s not in a USB stick, but in a keyboard with most of the connectivity of a standard desktop or notebook computer. read more...
permapage | score:9305 | -finid, February 26, 2013

The Coming HTML 5 Revolution in Linux

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I have spent the last couple of weeks working on a very ambitious C++ program. The program is a software model of a mechanical engineering system. I have never undertaken a more challenging or more rewarding computer programming project. As I spent hour after hour poring over the code, I began to realize why everyone is making such a fuss about HTML 5. read more...
permapage | score:9305 | -aweber, December 13, 2011

Tutorial: Replace Windows with Pinguy OS 11.10

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This tutorial shows how you can set up a Pinguy OS 11.10 desktop that is a full-fledged replacement for a Windows desktop, i.e. that has all the software that people need to do the things they do on their Windows desktops. The advantages are clear: you get a secure system without DRM restrictions that works even on old hardware, and the best thing is: all software comes free of charge. read more...
permapage | score:9227 | -falko, December 14, 2011
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Articles are owned by their authors.   © 2000-2012 Ray Yeargin