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Linux

Marked Up Code?

Wow look at that I haven’t posted in almost one whole month :mrgreen:. O yeah I have been on holidays from work for 3 weeks…. That would be it…. Nothing like camping in the middle of no where (Cumberland River) for a week to ween you off the Internet and blogging….. Anyway on to the good stuff….

I have just finished reading one of the most interesting and thought provoking articles I have read in quite a while: Extensible Programming for the 21st Century. However be warned if you are not a programmer you wont be that interested :P.

It raises quite a good point we have XML based office documents in OpenOffice.org for Documents, Spreadsheets, Presentations and Drawings why don’t we have XML documents for coding. We use Rational Rose Real-Time here at work to code using uml diagrams but to actually remove your source code for the display of it would be an interesting thought.

You could end up with one language to rule them all really. What would a programming language be if you suddenly took out it’s syntax. It would only be the standard API of each language that would separated them in the end. Would it be the death of scripting languages such as python and perl. Or would these new XML documents just be parsed into the target language.

Just thinking now it would be possible if people had the motivation to do something like this around the eclipse platform. As a plug-in, I would defiantly try it out and with the way companies like everything documented it would be a fantastic way to do it. Suddenly you don’t have your UML diagram and your source code. Your diagram would form part of your source code.

One thing the writer forgot to mention was that COM+ isn’t the only thing that works in that way the Linux world now has d-bus and bonobo so it is there.

Anyway have a read and a think it will be interesting in the years to come to see if tools actually start appearing that work in this vein.

How long can an install take?

After my success with installing Ubuntu on my Desktop system last week I installed it on my old Laptop as well this weekend. Bad idea

The laptop 400 Celeron with 192mb ram was running Fedora RC 2 so not too old and running at an acceptable rate :). So upgrading shouldn’t hurt it too much I thought.

But after 4-5 hours it was finished, I never knew a 1 CD install could take so long and I didn’t even download the updates I just installed straight from what was on the CD. And once the screen actually came up everything was slow. :(

However when I booted it this morning it was back to the same sort of level it was booting at with FRC2 so I’m happy now just some tweaking and I might have a reasonably usable system. But my old Wi-Fi card that I have worked a treat with the installer so in the end I am happy.

I do Ubuntu

Not long back(July 2004) I told a story of my love for Gentoo Linux. However I must confess this is now over :( my wondering has continued and last Monday night (18 Oct) I installed yet another distribution over Gentoo.

I went out and installed Ubuntu Linux in it’s pre-release 4.10. Yesterday however (21/10/2004) “Warty Warthog” went “Gold” ie. out of pre-release phase so tomorrow it’s off to update my system. Which like Gentoo will never need a reformat because they promise that the distribution will be upgradeable via apt-get alone. Which is great, for this was one of the main factors I appreciated in Gentoo in the first place.

But what really got me changed was the fact that the initial pre-release with Gnome 2.8 went out only a few days after 2.8.0 was officially available. A lot sooner than 2.8 was even in hard-masked testing in Gentoo.

Finally I was sick of playing around with emerge for the entire time I was on the computer rather than enjoying my Linux which from what I have read on the Ubuntu Forums is a rather large sticking point for a lot of people.

And as for now on you will notice I no longer have a Gentoo section on the Blog and it is now Ubuntu and once I finally get to have a bit of a play and finish setting it up I might get around to taking some screenies :P.

Open Source Challenge

I challenge all my fellow Linux geeks and other computer users out there to take up the *[Open Source] Challenge*. That is that each one of you try to use Open Source for all your computing. Now I hear you say “I spend most of my computing time at work and I can only use Windows” that’s exactly the point of the challenge :).

For every piece of software you use on a daily basis at work or at home if there is an Open Source alternative for you to use try to use it. And if you can’t download them at work burn it to a CD or bring it on a USB key from home. Here is a list of what I use at work:

  • Web browser: Firefox – Say goodbye to the 3 year old IE6
  • Ftp client: Filezilla – A great windows client and guess what it’s OS
  • RSS feed reader: Feedreader
  • Productivity suite: OpenOffice.org – Wont have all those proprietary plugins such as ReqPro but if you can do without Word the why not write it in OO.org?
  • Instant messenger: GAIM – A fantastic multi protocol agent, get rid of multiple clients; MSN, ICQ and go for one and do it OS(Open Source) instead
  • Vector graphics: Inkscape – Uses the SVG standard format
  • Raster graphics: GIMP – From it’s roots come GTK+ and Gnome not as many features as Photoshop but one heck of a better price :)

That is just a short list of the programs I use at work. You may find that most of the popular Linux applications have a Windows port. But you may say why bother when what I’m using works and how will my use benefit anyone? Well when you use this products at work and someone comes is having trouble with one of the proprietary programs then you can show them what OS(Open Source) has to offer and you have the installation on offer for them to use it on their computer. As we break down the stigma that OS(Open Source) software is “hard to use” or “for geeks only” with these GUI Windows programs Linux wont seem like such a large step for people if you say, “You know OpenOffice.org that you have been using for X months. In Linux OpenOffice.org is exactly the same.”

So give it a try and take up the Open Source Challenge today :)

Longhorn faces another delay

Yet another delay has been announced for the next versoin of windows codenamed Longhorn. Will this give futher chance for Linux to gain a foothold in the Desktop market only time will tell. But by the time it is released in late 2006 we on the current 6 month release schedule we should see Gnome 2.16, if version 2 at all maybe into 3?? and probably Fedora Release 6.

Check the story at infoworld

Why I choose Gentoo

At the start of the year I was a happy Fedora RC1 user… But now I am a very happy Gentoo user. Here I just hope to document the features that made me change distros.

Previous Distrobutions

Corel Linux 1.0 – My Linux journey started back in 1999 with the release or Corel Linux which has since turned into Xandros. It came as a cover CD to PC User one month and sported an old version of KDE, I really can’t remeber anything else about what packages came with this Distribution. The reason I did install it was that it could be installed onto a Windows, FAT, partition. Which was the only “safe” way for me to install Linux on my parents PII. It took about 2 hours to install and chose to use a boot disk instead of putting LILO in the MBR as so not to upset my mother. However once it was installed I spent maybe 2 hours in Linux total before un-installing it. The reason was that the computer had a WinModem in it; that is a modem that preforms some of it’s functions with the CPU ie. with software. These types of modems rarely work in Linux because the manufactures don’t want to release company secrets so that someone could write the drivers and back in 1999 basically no WinModem would work. So I said goodbye to Linux :(.

Keep Reading

Gaim 0.79

Gaim 0.79 was released today and there is one new feature that all of us MSN users will love. User Icons!

The icons come up everywhere:

  • They show up in your buddy list
  • They appear in the chat window
  • And most importantly you can set your own :)

Screenshots

For those of you who don’t know gaim is a multi-protocol IM(Instant Messenger) program. You can get it here and there is a MS Windows version too, I use it at work :P. Ohh one day, one day I will be able to work and use Linux at the same time. But until then there are so many great programs that are ported to Windows that I don’t fret too much.

A tale of emerge world

Last night I set out to update my Gentoo system1 using emerge with the simple commands:

$ emerge sync
$ emerge world

This was to be a fairly major upgrade as I was going from Gnome 2.4 to 2.6 which wasn’t anything to be laughed at but onto of this I would be upgrading gcc as well. I once tryed to upgrade gcc on Red Hat Linux 8 which ended in a system that would not boot :( so I thought I might be in for a rather hands on upgrade process, however I was wrong.

I also once upgraded Gnome on my Red Hat Linux 9 using GARNOME which took ages and killed my laptop when it ran out of hard disk space, but that’s another story, it rendered my system basically useless as I upgraded diffent libraries from underneath the currently running gnome. However with this upgrade everything still worked, except for Evolution (I see now it’s Novel Evolution instead of Ximian Evolution) during it’s upgrade from 1.4.5 to 1.4.6. Other than that all went well some icons went missing after the upgrade to GTK but it still kept going.

In the end it was time to get some rest but it was still upgrading so I did a quick ctl-c to call up halt and then issued a:

$ emerge world && poweroff

Then went off to bed :eek: got up this morning started it up again and it just booted and Gnome started no problems what so ever 8) ran a:

$ etc-update

Merged like 17 files and that was it. It just worked. I am so happy I knew Gentoo was good but hey now I’m a real Gentoo addict. It might be alot harder to install than a Red Hat and source distrobution takes ages to compile but hey who cares? When updating is this easy who needs to ever re-install anyway :D It has made my very boring week not too bad.

Should be taking some screenshots sometime soon check back then to see my Gnome 2.6 in all of it’s glory.

1 I am running a stable x86 Gentoo system with a 2.6.5-gentoo-r1 kernel with a Gnome window manager.

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