Showing posts from May, 2009


Downloaded Linux Mint 7, Gloria, and booted it on europa. Ran some quick tests and found it to be solid, as solid as Linux Mint 5 and 6. It's amazing it runs as well as it does directly off the Live CD; Flash, DVD playback, MP3, AVI, and MOV playback are but a few of the working features of Gloria. One regression I found concerns playback of a MP4 file I ripped using VLC under Ubuntu 7.10. It has played without issue up until this release. Another regression occurs when running glxgears. While there appears to be excellent performance, the OpenGL canvas that is the center of the application does not stay integrated with the window decoration on the desktop. Dragging glxgears around the desktop leaves copies of the canvas where the application was dragged from. This isn't an issue with Linux Mint so much as it's an issue with the current AMD/ATI video driver.

I'm disappointed to find those regressions, but those are not show stoppers. For the limited use to which I'l…

Ubuntu Knots Penguin Knickers

I ran across this little snippet courtesy of DistroWatch Weekly:The Ubuntu world was rocked last week by an announcement about Ubuntu One a web-based file-sharing and file-synchronisation system for the promised era of cloud computing. The Register explains: "Ubuntu's commercial backer won't fluff its own cloud, but Canonical isn't eschewing online services in the battle against Microsoft. Canonical has begun beta tests of a web-based service that'll let you store and synchronize files on your Jaunty Jackalope PC with other Jackalope-powered machines. Called Ubuntu One, it's designed to provide you with access to your files using a web interface when you're away from your main machine. The service also promises to let you share documents with others." While all this sounds like a worthy goal to pursue, not everyone in the Ubuntu community is happy. The reason? The Ubuntu One server will be a proprietary system. Brian Burger on Planet Ubuntu: "Big…

Star Trek: Flashier, Trashier, Dumber

It's good to be the curmudgeon. You get to sit over in your corner and throw rocks at the very shiny, very thinly built New and Improved Thing, such as JJ Abram's re-versioning of Star Trek.

I saw this movie for the first and last time over a week ago on Friday night, May 8th, for the princely sum of $9.50. I'm a cheapskate, preferring to wait until early Saturday morning to pay $4.50 for the matinee, but the hype was so high on this Trek film that I succumbed and paid a premium to sit in a sparsely filled theater (less than 1/4 full). No lines, no waiting. Few people. When I look at local reactions to films I have to wonder how new releases can break box office records; they sure aren't doing it around my neck of the woods.

When I walked out that Friday evening I decided to wait a week before writing a review. Part of it was out of deference to then-future viewers who wanted to see the movie without spoilers. Part of it was to allow the shock to wear off a bit. What I d…

Little Brother

I've been reading Cory Doctorow's "Little Brother" as an e-book via the Stanza reader on my iPod Touch. This isn't the first Doctorow book I've read; I started with his "I, Rowboat", thinking it was a comedy (it wasn't, not quite). I actually started reading "Little Brother" because of its reference in a Wired story, "Little Brother Is Watching You", posted back on April 9th. This is the story of Ian Tomlinson, who died from a heart attack after being manhandled and then pushed to the ground by London police. What struck me was that Mr. Tomlinson appeared to be walking alone, hands in pockets, before being overwhelmed by a group of police. There's no clear sound to indicate what might have passed between Mr. Tomlinson and the police, but the video clear indicates (at least to me) that Mr. Tomlinson was in no way aggressive, while the police, with their police dogs and body language, were all about aggression and challenge…