rakhesh shows …

March 26, 2006

My Opinions

Filed under: Links — rakhesh @ 11:40 am

I think it’s entirely appropriate to have no opinion when you don’t have enough information on the topic. As far as I can tell, few people agree with that position. And that’s frightening. §

I soooooo totally agree with Scott on this one. I rarely have opinions on anything; and my parents keep telling me its bad. Point is, unless and until I feel I have enough info on something, I can’t make an opinion of my own. And even then, I am never sure if I have enough info. Many a times its happened that I form an opinion on something based on what I think is enough info, and then just a few steps down the lane I find that I was wrong and there’s info that I missed out previously and which would change the way things look.

Ofcourse, that’s not to say one should never make opinions (coz one can never be sure one has all the info), but I think its best to wait till one has "enough" info before forming an opinion. Whatever "enough" info means …  

March 19, 2006

The Complete FreeBSD, Released Under a CC License

Filed under: Links — rakhesh @ 4:56 pm

Ten years ago, on 24 February 1996, Greg Lehey submitted for publication the final version of the first ever book on the FreeBSD operating system, "Installing and Using FreeBSD". It was later renamed to "The Complete FreeBSD", as is now known and appreciated by the users of this OS. Grog have always retained full rights to the book, and for today he has decided to release it for download under a Creative Commons license. Besides, he doesn’t have the time to keep updating it, so he is asking for help. He can’t guarantee money, "just" recognition in the preface. §

In case you didn’t know …

Arch Linux

Filed under: Links — rakhesh @ 4:55 pm

"The recent emphasis of the Linux community has been on desktop distros that make it easy to install and configure the system without venturing beyond the GUI. Despite the success of these beginner-friendly systems, a significant segment of the Linux population prefers a simpler approach. These back-to-basics users want clarity, stability, and speed, and they do not care about the proliferation of redundant tools and glossy configuration helpers that populate the GUI-based systems. In the past, no-frills Linux users gravitated to systems such as Slackware, Gentoo, or Debian, but another back-to-basics distro is gaining favor among the Linux faithful: Arch Linux." §

I couldn’t agree more. I gave Ubuntu Linux a shot yesterday, and I am already thinking of removing it. Ubuntu is good, I’m not denying that, but I dunno, I always think of Linux a command-line kind of OS. I started fiddling with Linux when Slackware was "the" Linux distro and RedHat was just starting to put some colour into their initial startup lines; and more than Linux I’ve worked with stuff like Free/Net/OpenBSD and so I kind of like the command-line … and so Ubuntu put me off big time yesterday!

And its not just that. Personally, I feel Linux excels itself in the command-line. Things like GNOME and KDE and too slow or sluggish or complicated or whatever whatever whatever. GNOME’s taskbar is sooo funny for instance (I was using 2.14). If there’s only one window, the taskbar shows its button across half the taskbar. Even though I’ve set the button to have a low maximum size and all. GNOME’s menus are decent though, I have to say that. And as for KDE, its got these huge icons in the system tray, and its menus are sooo bloody complicated, boy! And both of them slow things down big time. I was trying to import my music collection into Banshee and amaroK, and both of them had difficulties doing so. Would just get stuck, and I wouldn’t even be able to open a command prompt or kill the processes etc. In Windows, I use iTunes and it imports things in a snap!

So ya, I think Linux has still a long way to go in the UI part. Even a distro like Ubuntu requires u to open the command prompt now and then. Sure, there might be GUI alternatives to the command prompt commands, but those are not default — you gotta check the forums and then download them etc. I’ve used Windows for long, and I’ve never had to resort to the command-line for simple chores. At the most I’ve had to tweak with the weird looking Registry — and that’s about it! Not like Linux.

I don’t think I’ll give Arch a try though. Dunno, not too interested. Have been put off by these Linux distributions infact. What I want to give a try to though is Bluewall. Its Debian Sid, with NetBSD’s pkgsrc — wonder how it is. I dont mind using the Linux kernel or GNU tools etc — have nothing against them — all I mind is Linux distributions that are trying to make Linux user-friendly and not really getting there.


Firefox 2.0 Alpha1

Filed under: Links — rakhesh @ 3:05 pm

Go get it! §

Screenshots. § 

March 17, 2006

Dapper Flight5

Filed under: Links — rakhesh @ 9:26 am

I think I’ll give this a shot today. §

greased lightbox

Filed under: Links — rakhesh @ 8:35 am

Sweet! §

March 13, 2006

Google lands on Mars

Filed under: Links — rakhesh @ 4:43 pm

Yes sire. §

Flofox – Flock Theme for Firefox

Filed under: Links — rakhesh @ 3:28 pm

Want your Firefox to look like Flock? Get the theme here. §

Why Free Standards Matter

Filed under: Links — rakhesh @ 11:59 am

A California State Agency web site that required Windows Media 9. I happened to be running my Solaris laptop at the time. So I couldn’t receive the video. As a tax paying citizen of the state, my government was inadvertently telling me I could not receive state emergency services without buying a Microsoft product. Governor Schwarzenegger, I don’t want my or my employer’s tax dollars going to promote a monopoly in California. (Love them though I do as a business partner.) §

Interesting post. Check the links too.

March 6, 2006

iTunes and non-iPods

Filed under: Links — rakhesh @ 11:36 am

Always wished you could sync your non-iPod devices (like Sony Ericsson W800i for instance) using iTunes? Well, its possible now thanks to iTunes Agent. Go get it!

Apart from that, I didn’t know till today (when I searched around for it) that its possible to have iTunes show up ON your taskbar the way WMP does. Awesome! § §

Prof says there’s no hacker he can’t foil

Filed under: Links — rakhesh @ 10:55 am

A University of Toronto professor says he can now use a photon of light to smash through the most sophisticated computer theft schemes that hackers can devise.Using the infinitesimally small light particles — and one of physics’ most confusing theories — U of T computer engineer Hoi-Kwong Lo says it’s possible to confound even the most elaborate decoding plots and, eventually, safeguard financial or classified information from electronic spies or burglars. §


NTFS resizing

Filed under: Links — rakhesh @ 9:34 am

I’ve been thinking of installing NetBSD on my laptop.  And for that purpose, I had to resize the default NTFS partition to something smaller so that I get space for NetBSD. (As is usual nowadays, all laptop manufacturers pre-install their laptops with Windows XP, giving it the full disk space. There’s no way to workaround that, coz even if u format and reinstall from their recovery cds, it creates full partitions).

Finally I found this document that lists some "open source" methods to resizing partitions. Since I was installing NetBSD, I didn’t want to download some Linux distro that supports resizing (like Mandriva, or SUSE for instance). Am downloading the SystemRescueCD and RIP discs that it mention — let’s see how they work.

March 5, 2006

Google shifts to AMD on the server

Filed under: Links — rakhesh @ 4:56 pm

Despite the fact that battery life is not an issue, rising energy costs have caused the industry to start looking at power efficiency in a whole new way. According to Urs Holzle, Google’s vice president of engineering and operations, the cost of running a server 24 x 7 x 365, for its three-year lifetime starts to approach half as much as it cost to buy the hardware initially. For a company like Google, which runs thousands of servers constantly to provide its core service, these costs can add up. §


It’s raining aliens!

Filed under: Links — rakhesh @ 4:14 pm

Investigations suggested the rain was red because winds had swept up dust from Arabia and dumped it on Kerala. But Godfrey Louis, a physicist at Mahatma Gandhi University in Kottayam, after gathering samples left over from the rains, concluded this was nonsense. ‘If you look at these particles under a microscope, you can see they are not dust, they have a clear biological appearance.’ Instead Louis decided that the rain was made up of bacteria-like material that had been swept to Earth from a passing comet. In short, it rained aliens over India during the summer of 2001. §

The article actually calls the state of Kerala a "district". Hehe! Interesting theory/ read btw.

March 1, 2006

Quantum interrogation

Filed under: Links — rakhesh @ 8:22 am

An nice explanation of Quantum Mechanics and its quirks. Gave me a headache at the end though — I guess I’m just dumb in figuring it out. :) §

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