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Showing posts from June, 2008

Am I missing something?

I'm looking at the latest batch of updates for Ubuntu 8.04, 17 in all. One set of updates is for the kernel. That's right, yet another kernel update. And why are we updating the kernel this time? So that we can shave 3 seconds off the boot-up sequence, from 36 seconds to 33 seconds. Here's the bug (240938). The title of this entry comes from the last comment from Dave Miller:are we really all going to download updated kernels, with headers and all, just to shave 3 secs off the boot time? am i missing something?This kind of update, with the disruption to a working system, makes a mockery of one of open sources so-called strengths, which is how quickly flaws are found and fixed. What this update is attempting to correct is no flaw, fatal or otherwise. And it causes me (and others who do the same) to have to manually re-install ATI-supplied video drivers (and possibly nVidia as well, but I don't know). Under normal circumstances this isn't such a problem since kernel…

Notes from the field: openSUSE 11 and ATI

openSUSE

Downloaded, via BitTorrent (Azureus), openSUSE 11.0 Gnome LiveCD ISO. Burned the disk and booted europa with it. Took a look around, and in about five minutes came to the conclusion that I wasn't going to re-install SUSE back onto europa after all.

Europa currently runs with Ubuntu 8.04, and 8.04 has had a slew of updates since its initial release and installation (update from 7.10, actually) on this box. It has the latest Firefox (3.0 official release), the latest OpenOffice (2.4.1), and a properly released version of gcc (4.2.3). When I booted the openSUSE LiveCD I found Firefox 3 Beta 5, OpenOffice 2.4.0, and just like with openSUSE 10.2, a pre-release of gcc, in this case 4.3.1. I found that with a simple 'cat /proc/version' to see what had been used to build the kernel.

I can almost forgive everything except the gcc pre-release. In case the openSUSE devs missed it, gcc 4.3.1 was released May 19, 30 days ago. If they did build the kernel with the release gcc but …

Why I'll never buy an iPhone

And the reason is the now total lock in with AT&T. And I hate AT&T with a passion that stems from my treatment by them as a former customer.

In case you missed it, the next generation iPhone introduced this past Monday delivered a new business model for selling the next generation iPhone. You have to purchase it along with a two-year AT&T plan. You can't order it off the Apple website and then have it activated by purchasing the AT&T service plan separately. It removes all choice in the selection of a wireless carrier, even if that choice included the dubious act of 'breaking out of jail' in order to use the iPhone with a carrier other than AT&T.

I have absolutely no use for AT&T. My distaste for AT&T as a wireless carrier developed in early 1997 when I purchased my first cell phone along with an AT&T two year service contract. I put up with the inordinately expensive and poor AT&T service until I switched to Bellsouth Wireless in mid-19…

Lifes little challenges and rising costs

I've been quite busy the past month. I've changed jobs, moving from SPARTA to MITRE. And the day before I started with MITRE (June 2), my wife went into the hospital to have her left knee operated on again for the second time in a year.

Judy had been in the hospital earlier in March due to a raging infection that pushed her temperature to 103F for days on end. They got it back under control, and traced the infection to her first knee replacement she'd been given in June of 2007. For whatever reason staph became lodged in the knee and had lain dormant it seems until March, when it started to exert itself. For the second operation we went to a different hospital and a different doctor. What makes it worse for Judy is this is not the permanent prosthesis. She has to go back for a third procedure in three to six months for the permanent second joint.

She went in on Sunday June 1, and I brought her home the afternoon of Thursday June 5. Today I'm preparing to pack my bags and…