Friday, March 30, 2007
Wednesday, March 28, 2007
Tuesday, March 27, 2007
With all the hoops manufacturers are making customers jump through, getting a warranty honored is getting almost as complex as getting a rebate check. But Seagate appears to have taken that trend to another level by making their customers promise not to use their repaired hard drive to make a nuclear bomb.
I use Kubuntu on my Thinkpad Z61t and I have been pretty satisfied with it. I've hit a strange snag recently though. Sometimes the keyboard would do wierd things as if the keyboard layout has changed or CAPS LOCK had been pressed which as you can imagine is quite annoying :)
So, the other day they released the Kubuntu Feisty Fawn Beta and since I've heard good things about it, I thought why not? They wanted people to test the new Distribution Upgrade tool so of course I tried upgrading my system that way. A couple of notes about my system as it looked before the upgrade: My system was a Dapper install that was later upgraded to Edgy. That upgrade didn't go too well and required quite a few fixes before I had a working system again. Of course, a large part of the reason was my own fault because of various modifications I had made which the upgrade can't always handle too well. Also I have installed various other stuff - I've upgraded to the latest releases of various software like KDE itself, Amarok, Digikam and more. All in all, it is far from a standard Kubuntu Edgy install.
Considering the above, the upgrade tool did a quite good job I think, but it is not ready for release in my opinion. I'm confused about who it is meant for? If it is advanced users, then I don't really see the need for a gui tool. If it is meant for novice users, then it asks way too many questions. I'm far from a Linux expert but I have used it for some time now as a desktop so I think I know a bit, however I was surprised to get a lot of x.org configuration questions, some of which I couldn't answer (what kind of mouse is attached to your computer? it's a laptop and I don't have a mouse attached...). Why do it need to configure x.org? My laptop have Intel graphics with nice open source drivers, why can't it just used the current configuration that has worked nicely until now? Of course, it might be a broken x.org configuration that was the reason for the wierd keyboard behaviour.
In the end (almost at the end of the upgrade) the tool failed with a dpkg error and stalled. All I could do was to reboot. After rebooting I was greeted with a surprisingly well working system. I had expected a system that was more broken than after my previous install.
I played around a bit with it and I didn't find anything particularly wrong with it, but I still had that strange feeling of using an old system with a lot of cruft (I can't really explain it better than that), so I decided to do a fresh install (there's just something nice about a fresh install). The install went just as well as I expected. The only thing I'm not quite satisfied with is the way it handles partitioning. I wish I could come with a clear comment on what is wrong with it, but I can't, sorry. I just know that I've used better tools. Other than that, I'm impressed. You just answer a few questions about where you live and what language you want to use and that's it, you blink and Kubuntu is installed. Seriously, the install finished much faster than I expected - a nice surprise.
How do I like Feisty Fawn so far? I like it a lot I must say. I haven't really used it much yet, but I have tried a few things. I thought I would check whether the automatic install of proprietary stuff worked. First thing I did was go to YouTube to see if it would automatically install Macromedia Flash 9 for me but that didn't work for some reason. However, a friend then posted a link (can't remember which one) which I visited and apparently that needed flash and up popped a dialog asking whether I wanted to install flash! I clicked OK and it installed and I can now play flash movies on YouTube :)
I also tried playing a DivX video in Kaffeine which didn't work either so I launched the application installer and found a codec pack, installed it and it worked :)
Yes, I know proprietary codecs are bad and I hate them just as much as everyone else (I'm a huge supporter of free, open standards and hope software patents didn't exist!), but they are difficult to avoid, at least they are for me and then it is nice that it is easy to install them!
To sum it all up: I'm pretty happy with my new Kubuntu beta install - notice I haven't mentioned any crashes in the new install? That's because it's been rock solid so far - quite impressive from a beta release I think ;)
Monday, March 26, 2007
Thursday, March 15, 2007
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, many say, and if you are a beer geek there is no better way to start the day than with a powerful, complex morning stout. The unique mix of oats and coffee gives this beer large body and power, while the coffee, at the same time, creates a nice balance.
I must confess that I haven't had it for breakfast, not yet at least, but it is truly an amazing stout! Highly recommended!
I have also tried their Jackie Brown (brown ale) and Stateside India Pale Ale. Both are great beers, but it is the Beer Geek Breakfast that has me most impressed.
Wednesday, March 14, 2007
KDE 4.0 will not contain all features announced nor promised: these will come during the lifetime of KDE 4. We can probably switch quickly to a KDE 4.1 release if there are major subsystems ready for merging soon after the KDE 4.0 hits the streets. Also remember that we have been porting for a couple years and we need to get this show on the road.
Release soon and release often.
I went down to a game shop yesterday and fully expected them to have no Nintendo Wii's in stock and here is how it went:
Question: If I order a Nintendo Wii now, when can I expect to get it?
Answer: In around 2 seconds when I've fetched in the back!
So the obvious end of that is that I now owns a Nintendo Wii. The console is small and cute as has been mentioned all over the internet.
I haven't bought any games yet, so I "only" have Wii Sports which came with the console. Wii Sports is plenty for me for now though - Tennis is a lot of fun! Nintendo has really changed the way to play games and I love it!