Say goodbye to Microsoft. Now.

Say goodbye to Microsoft. Now.

Say goodbye to Microsoft. Now.

While Windows Vista was being developed, the Free/Libre/Open-Source Software (FLOSS) made many advances.

Installing Linux has become easier than ever with graphical Live CD installers and now with Windows executables that let you install the distributions while in Microsoft Windows.

Projects such as Xgl/Compiz, and Beryl have greatly evolved and drawn in many people seeking eye candy for their desktop.

Companies such as Novell, Hewlett-Packard, IBM, Red Hat, Canonical, and NVIDIA (just to name a few) have been helping contribute to the open-source community and help to ensure that Linux users and developers have all the tools that they need available to them.

The FSF and GNU project have reached the five-thousandth entry in the Free Software Directory.

What does Vista have?

  • A new Graphical User Interface (GUI), Aero, which just doesn’t compare to the compositing window managers available for X11.
  • A new “Alt-Tab” application, Windows Flip 3D, which allows you to see how many more security warnings you have to go through before you reach your desktop.
  • Shiny new icons and wallpapers that are arguably stolen from various places.
  • DirectX 10, there’s money to be made by putting Vista compatible stickers on the Graphics Processing Units (GPUs) made for its needs.
  • OpenGL 1.4, Microsoft has Direct3D taking OpenGL calls, who wants to use the current OpenGL 2.1 when you have DirectX 10? *sarcasm*
  • Vista has DRM, bad Vista.

Keep in mind that this is all coming from a GNU fanboy.

GNU

Quick Nokia N800 Review

I finally got to installing the applet to take screenshots, so here they are:

Desktop

It runs a resolution of 800×480 which is a 5:3 display aspect ratio. I switched to this theme, the default one was much darker. On the desktop I have an RSS feed reader, Google / Wikipedia search, clock, contacts (didn’t set up my GoogleTalk or e-mail yet), and an applet that controls the media player’s “Internet Radio” section. In the upper right you can see a Bluetooth status indicator, display settings, sound settings, connection manager, a screenshot applet that shows the CPU load and memory consumption…and then magically disappears for the second that the screenshot is being taken, and a power status indicator. When the N800 is connected to a computer via USB it shows on the far left of that applet tab.

Battery

The battery outlasts my MacBook’s on normal usage and charges really quick, I’m sure that you could look into getting a longer lasting battery if you wanted, Nokia already has some accessories out for it.

Menu

Here’s a shot of the menu.

Keyboard

There’s an on-screen (virtual) keyboard that’s easy enough to use. It also supports some Bluetooth keyboards, but you can always be creative. Touching the screen with one of your fingers instead of the stylus will bring up a larger virtual keyboard that can be typed on with your fingers or thumbs.

Handwriting

After “training” it to recognize my handwriting, which is very easy and has many shortcut features, it stopped mis-guessing what I’m typing and I have it down pretty well, the word prediction is really nice too. It will remember new words that you enter that it doesn’t know yet, so in the future they are available. If you are at a password prompt it does not list word options and does not remember what you tell it in the word list, you can have it save your passwords but I’m used to not saving passwords. It displays the character for a short period of time and then changes it to an asterisk.

apt-get

Here’s some neat Linux info on it, Nokia’s Internet Tablet OS 2007 Edition is built off of Debian for an ARM CPU.

BusyBox v1.1.3 (Debian 3:1.1.3-3.osso17) Built-in shell (ash)
Enter ‘help’ for a list of built-in commands.

~ $ uname -a
Linux Nokia-N800-51 2.6.18-omap1 #2 Tue Dec 19 18:41:02 EET 2006 armv6l unknown

The Application Manager is just a GUI (Graphical User Interface) to apt-get and dpkg, which is how you install applications, from .deb files and repositories.

The built-in camera is pretty cool, and it comes in clear when you’re in a well light environment. The camera hides away in a bulge that’s on the back of the tablet, which I think is very ergonomically suitable and helps it fit the hands better. The hardware buttons are easy to use and they don’t get bumped easily, there’s even a zoom-in, zoom-out, and fullscreen button on the top of the tablet. The speakers are way better than those of any laptop I’ve ever owned, they are loud and clear. The fold-out stand is handy for setting it on a table where it is still visible and usable, who wants a tablet that lies flat on a table? Not I.

That’s the end of my quick review on the Nokia N800, now go buy one and contribute to making me some sweet apps.
=D

TinMan got a Nokia N800

w00t!

I am posting this from my new Nokia N800.

I’ve been working on a project with the Quake 3 Engine, but I will probably put it on hold to play around with the Maemo SDK (Software Development Kit) to port some apps to this. It runs Nokia’s Internet Tablet 2007 Edition (Maemo 3.0 ‘bora’) which is obviously new and there are still many apps from the 2006 catalog that haven’t been ported to 2007 (3.0) yet.

I’m callng it a night and leaving you with this: Nokia N800

Happy New Year!

CUGNet

NeonPulse is now being generously hosted on CUGNet, be sure to check it out and browse onShore‘s services.

Comcast

The past week was very aggravating, first of all our cable television goes out with a message reading:

Your terminal is deactivated. Please call your cable operator.

We called Comcast and they sent out a cable guy on Friday, he showed up and explained that we weren’t receiving any channels because we had an analog cable box and that Comcast has switched everything over to digital so that they are compliant with Title III of Public Law No: 109-171. Good for them, they made the change early, their deadline for it is February 17, 2009 by law. Another problem that came up here was that President Bush may have spent time reading skimming through that bill and he approved it.

The cable guy unplugged the cable box and plugged the coaxial cable right into the back of our old RCA television. The television wasn’t capable of automatically tuning the different channels, so it ended in us realizing that the new TV that we didn’t get for Christmas was coming anyways. When the cable box was deactivated there was a screwup at the Comcast office with taking it off our account, they also took off our cable internet modem. It was remotely bricked. The cable guy didn’t have a spare in his van so he called in and scheduled for someone to come by on Sunday with a new one.

Sunday came and another cable guy showed up. The modem was remotely fixed by then but wasn’t registered anymore, whatever website you tried to go to it would redirect you to a Comcast page to download and install the setup program. Downloading it worked fine, but running it resulted in the spawning of a DOS window and an error message that basically said the executable was corrupt. The cable guy went to his van and fetched a CD with the program on it and it worked…up until it said that it couldn’t find a networking card on my computer when I was already on the network getting redirected to that Comcast page. It ended in me looking up the internet gateway from my router and the cable guy calling Comcast and telling them to push the registration through.

Our new television is a whopping 24″, compared to the 19″ that we’ve had since as far back as I can remember.

Christmas

I got some really sweet CDs and had fun with the family.

Bright Eyes: A Christmas Album

Everclear: Welcome to the Drama Club

Regina Spektor: Begin to Hope

New Year’s Day

It’s New Year’s Day Night right now and for a couple more minutes.

Nothing can better express my thoughts on this topic than the following Ctrl+Alt+Del comic:

Right Around the Bend

 

If you don’t know what Winter-een-mas is then you can either read through the CAD archive of comics or you can read about it on the Ctrl+Alt+Del Wikipedia article.

Winter-een-mas is the LAN Party holiday. 🙂

That’s it for now.
-TinMan