Ramblings of a Professional Computer Geek

October 13, 2010

10 Reasons Not To Use Linux?

I was browsing Linux news sites, and ran into this:
10 Reasons Not to Use Linux (Reflexion).

I started to write a comment, but it grew to the point I decided to just post it here, instead.

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January 4, 2010

How to Destroy the Book

Filed under: Open Source,Uncategorized — Padma @ 2:13 pm
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Okay, it’s not strictly about computers, but any geek who isn’t concerned about copyright doesn’t deserve the sobriquet of ‘geek’.

Back in November, Cory Doctorow (you don’t know Cory Doctorow? For shame) delivered a speech to librarians, authors, publishers, educators, and students as part of Canada’s National Reading Summit. (more…)

August 18, 2009

Why All The ‘How To Install…’ Articles?

Filed under: Linux,Open Source — Padma @ 9:23 am
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As I’ve perused the various Linux news sites and blogs, one thing I notice is all the “How to Install <program X> in Ubuntu” – type articles.  Each time I see one, my first thought is, “don’t people know how to use Synaptic?  Or ‘Add/Remove Programs’ ?”

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April 1, 2009

What’s Happening to PCLinuxOS?

Filed under: Linux,Open Source,PCLinuxOS — Padma @ 3:45 pm
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The last few months have been … interesting.   Beginning about ten months  ago, Texstar “disappeared”.  He turned over the development of PCLOS 2008/2009 to the Ripper Gang, and didn’t say anything to the community.  A couple months ago, with 2009 almost ready to hit the streets, he popped back up, and delayed the release until he pronounced himself satisfied.

What happened?

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February 16, 2009

PCLinuxOS 2009: My Experience

Filed under: Linux,Open Source,PCLinuxOS — Padma @ 4:46 pm
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Okay, technically, the 2009 iso isn’t out yet.  But the repositories have been unfrozen, and the “Big Update” was pushed to all the mirrors.  I updated a couple of weeks ago.  So how is it going?

To begin with, my first try at updating was a no-go.  It was all my fault, I admit.  I had been multi-booting, playing with other distros while I waited for 2009.  I knew I had screwed up my grub.  I had tweaked it enough to let me boot PCLOS.   I knew I had to go in and fix it before I did the update and reboot.  I knew I had to….

<sigh>

To make a long story short, I ended up reformatting my root partition, and reinstalling PCLOS-2008 MiniMe.  But from there, I re-did the Big Update, and everything was beautiful.

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February 11, 2009

The “Microsoft Trained Brain Syndrome”

Filed under: Linux,Open Source,Windows — Padma @ 11:53 am
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I ran across an article this morning, Linux Versus the Microsoft Trained Brain Syndrome.  I thought it made some very good points.

The problem is that people who have lived, worked, and played in a homogeneous Microsoft computing paradigm are lost and confused when they encounter a different paradigm. These people have only seen the flawed Microsoft ideology for how computing systems should work and so have a difficult time with more elegant systems based on Unix. They see the Linux system with its’ own paradigm and ideology and try to force it into the only paradigm they know, which is Microsoft’s. This will always cause the user problems.

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January 28, 2009

Get Ready For PCLOS 2009

Much to the delight of the many users, the Ripper Gang has announced that the repositories will soon be unfrozen, and the updates for 2009 will be available.  The announcement can be seen here.  The “Big Update” is expected to take place the first weekend in February.  The new iso should be out sometime after that.

This update is a big one.  Expect to wait a couple of hours to download everything.  And, because this update includes a new kernel, it requires a reboot.  (Just about the only time you have to reboot a Linux system is when you update the kernel.)

I’ve been playing with 2009 TR5 on my laptop.  It  has been a joy to use, and I’m looking forward to running it on my main desktop.

January 13, 2009

vi – The editor of choice

This winter, my employer decided to radically change the way we support new customers.    Instead of building their telephony applications using a proprietary, in-house language, we will build them in (raw) VXML, using PHP as the ‘glue’ to put it all together.  (Of course, existing apps, whatever the language, will continue to be supported.)

This means, among other things, that an IDE, or at least an editor, must be decided on to ensure standardization throughout our development branch.  Enter Applications Engineering, my section. (more…)

December 23, 2008

Linux Isn’t Just Good Ideology — It’s Better Computing

“Windows programs love to make themselves the dominant monkey on your system, and like all dominant monkeys they fling poop: placing icons on your desktop and quick start menu, making themselves the default for whatever you want to do, and opening themselves up automatically. Load iTunes and at every startup you get hit in the face with QuickTime, a load of monkey dung in your system tray taking up resources whether you need it or (usually) not.”

John Deeth is a journalist who occasionally writes about computers. He is currently running a series about Software As A Subversive Activity.  The latest, Part 6, talks about the hows and whys that make Linux a better computing experience than Windows.

He does have one specific a little wrong, though.  When he says there are 40 known Linux viruses, vs. over 60000 Windows viruses, he is correct in fact, but doesn’t go quite deep enough.  While there are about 40 known Linux viruses, only a half-dozen have ever been found in the wild.  The remainder exist only in the lab, where they were written as proof-of-concept cases.  I would go so far as to challenge anyone to find any that are surviving/propagating in the wild, today.

December 12, 2008

Character Assassination Ain’t Us

Filed under: Linux,Open Source,Windows — Padma @ 2:41 pm
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The further story from helios.

Sounds like some of the readers went totally ballistic about this, without knowing all the facts.  While I was indignant about “Karen’s” email, I certainly would never dream of calling down such wrath as some of these.  Helios is a class act, too, and admits and apologizes for mistakes he made.

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