Category: Unix

Wednesday Weekly Links: January 29, 2014

Wednesday Weekly LinksJanuary is almost over, and it’s already been an interesting ride this year.  2014 is turning out to be an interesting year.

New ideas are emerging as well as a changing geopolitical landscape.  While this isn’t the change many were supposed to “believe in,” things are definitely not going to be stagnant.

Unix

  • Bridge Linux:  Every now and then, a new Unix-like OS enters town.  This distro uses Arch as its base and comes in a variety of desktop environments.  There is a 32 and 64-bit edition.  Dalton Miller, the founder of the project was recently interviewed by DistroWatch.
  • Bitcoin and TigerDirect: The online electronics retailer is now accepting Bitcoin as payment.  As mention of the digital currency goes more mainstream, it will be interesting to see what happens next.
  • David Gerwitz recommends Chromebooks: Gerwitz of ZDNet has recently started recommending Chromebooks for everyday users.  The big reasoning according to him is that, “For people who don’t need all that Windows has to offer, for those who live in their browsers, Gmail, Facebook, and such, for those who write simple documents and need simple spreadsheets or presentations, for those who just need to get something done quickly and easily, the Chromebook is an ideal choice.”

 

Overlooked Pop Culture

 

Friday Epic Fail: BSA’s Horrible Ad

BSA FB AD Part 1
You’re kidding, right?

By Thomas Holbrook II

I remember the good old days of relying on Microsoft.  I used everything from Windows to Office.  I even used Visual Basic for a while.

The problem is that said software costs several hundred dollars in the U.S. alone.  Even the subscription model can get expensive after a while.

That’s why so called “software piracy” has run rampant throughout the years.  While many would love for companies and individuals to be compensated for the work done, bending them over and violating their hind quarters without so much as a happy reach around was not a good incentive to be “moral and ethical” about installing software.

Then again, this is the same organization that referred to ACTA as a treaty, when in fact it wasn’t.  Since they do tend to act like a mafia, it shouldn’t be too surprising.

Little girl with an eye patch with a caption, "Look Mommy!  The BSA!
They’re afraid we’ll corrupt the youth. Original image thanks to this awesome person under this fantastic license.

So there I was on my lunch quietly scrolling through Facebook when something showed up on my feed that caused me to die a little on the inside.  The big push is for people to turn others in for cash rewards.

This reminded me of another ad that got trolled.  Instead of an actor who was blown up to look like Hercules through the magic of photo editing, we have, “Hey!  Snitch on others you know for money!  Yeah!   Money!”

Needless to say, the ad didn’t go over well.

BSA FB AD Part 2
Maybe one should report themselves to see what happens. Then again, that’s like placing a hot iron on your no no parts for curiosity’s sake.

From being called scum to being asked if they’d pay for a person’s software if they turned themselves in, is a clear demonstration that the people at the BSA are not the brightest stars in the sky.

Why in the world would they pay for an ad on Facebook?

Who knows.  Maybe they just want to throw everything out there and see what sticks.  At the end of the day, BSA is this week’s Friday Epic Fail!

Wednesday Weekly Links: January 15, 2014

Information Awareness graphic.
Don’t blindly trust something that says it’s open. Trust, but verify!  Image is part of the public domain.

It isn’t too far into 2014, and we’re already experiencing some interesting turn of events.  Thomas Holbrook II is now writing for Muktware once again.  His focus will be on Chromebooks, Chrome OS, and other topics, such as civil liberties online.

Speaking of civil liberties, that is one topic that will see coverage in this week’s links.  We have the usual developments in free and open source software, but also from a few other fronts as well.

Unix

  • Don’t Blindly Trust Open Source, verify it: Mozilla Calls for Protection from NSA Spying (Muktware.com): Swapnil Bhartiya, founder and editor of Muktware, writes about the NSA and how the availability of a project’s source code isn’t immune from tampering, especially if developers don’t pay enough attention.
  • ZaReason’s Zeto a Part of their Latest Offerings (ZaReason): Though the company has been criticized for their tablet, the California-based company keeps quietly releasing new products, such as the Zeto.  It’s powered by the newest generation of Intel processors as well as powerful NVIDIA graphics.
  • Ars Technica on Verizon vs FCC (Ars Technica): The courts have invalidated most of the Net Neutrality rules put out by the FCC.  ISP’s can’t be treated like phone companies.  Only time will tell whether ISP’s will start to throttle traffic in order to prevent competition throughout various Internet-based industries.

 

Overlooked Pop Culture

  • Fukushima Radiation Hits San Francisco? (Kill Your TV YouTube Channel):  According to a test with a Geiger counter, radiation levels at a San Francisco beach were discovered to be at abnormally high levels.  Is this from Fukushima?
  • Superbabies? (Mail Online): A Chinese firm is apparently trying to see if one can map the genes of those who are especially skilled in Math.  Imagine picking out the smartest embryos and combining other good genes with them.  Interesting indeed.
  • Daniel Bryan Has a Concussion? (24Wrestling.com): Though not seen on WWE’s website, it seems that Daniel Bryan suffered a concussion during the cage match from the last Monday Night Raw.  Again, no official statement has been made on WWE.com.

Wednesday Weekly Links: January 8, 2014

Wednesday Weekly LinksThe new year has started off right with more dedication to this site, including having some links ready for everybody to check out each week.

Have a link you want to see here?  Feel free to drop us a line in the comments, on any of our social networking places (linked to the left), via phone (660-474-0345), or by e-mail (thomash2@thenixedreport.com).

Unix

  • Fedora Project: Sponsored by Red Hat, version 20 of this Operating System is the first stop on this year’s Distro Journey.
  • Is Microsoft Grasping at Straws? (FOSS Force): Ken “helios” Starks asks the question of whether Microsoft is on their last legs regarding competition against Free and Open Source Software.  From mentioning the aQuantive buyout to Rockstar, Starks paints a picture of a company that has grown desperate.
  • Razer’s Project Christine (MaximumPC): Those who are seasoned veterans when it comes to upgrading PC’s may have had their fair share of nicks and cuts on their hands and fingers.  Razer is apparently wanting to change all of that by creating a modular gaming system that lends itself to easier upgrades.

 

Overlooked Pop Culture

  • The British Punk Band that Fooled Reagan, Thatcher, and the CIA (The Daily Beast): Crass, a British Punk Band conducted a prank in which a fake phone call between then President Ronald Reagan and British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher caused quite a stir.  American intelligence blamed the soviets, while the British blamed Argentine spies.  The lead singer is disturbed to this day that governments were so easily fooled.
  • On News Sources and Bias (Bonnie Kristian):  The argument is made that there is no way to get rid of bias in news or the media in general.  The blog post links to sources that they pursue on a regular basis.
  • Decapitated Sex Toys Prompted Police Probe (The Smoking Gun): A Florida woman’s ex-girlfriend had apparently cut off the heads of a few dildos, prompting her to contact the police.  Due to lack of evidence, the case was eventually closed.  Of course it wouldn’t be Wednesday Weekly Links without something really weird like this.

Tech Tuesday: Fedora 20 Screenshot and a Video!

GNOME Shell on Fedora 20.
GNOME Shell in all its glory.

First off, for those who missed it, here’s the latest episode of our podcast.

I’ve set up Fedora 20 on the HP Elite 410y Desktop, and it works so far.  Seeing as how it contains LibreOffice, I should be able to work with some documents while running this OS for about a month.

One of the things I’ve been wanting to do for some time is get down to the nitty gritty in terms of installation and how well the system works.  I don’t have a system that’s portable with NVIDIA graphics, because the Toshiba Tecra M9’s GPU is problematic (it hangs on the latest binary drivers).

Due in part to Bruce Byfield’s observations about distro reviews not quite having enough details (i.e. how smooth the installation is, etc… etc…), I figured I’d take a bit more time in terms of installation.  I’ve taken a few notes and made a few observations about some of the quirks of installing Fedora 20 from a Live DVD.

 

Good News Saturday: 12 Geeks of Christmas Outreach Successful

Reglue Project Logo
The Reglue Project helps kids acquire a computer for school in Texas when their parents can’t afford one.

Some people donate to the Red Cross or volunteer at soup kitchens around the holidays.  During the 2013 season, Ken “helios” Starks conducted an outreach called the “12 Geeks of Christmas.”

Twelve geeks were sent reconditioned notebook computers to give to a child whose family couldn’t afford one otherwise.  On his blog, he wrote:

We send said Geek a reconditioned laptop with Linux on it and they locate a school-aged child in their community that wouldn’t normally be able to afford a computer in the household.  Deliver the computer and spend some time showing the parents and the child how to use it, and support them when they need help.

Yeah, I know…that’s asking a lot.  But 12 of you did it.

Richard Kapler is credited as one of those geeks who gave a computer to a child who is doing everything they can to make it into college.  There are currently plans to tell the story of more of these geeks.  Well done, helios.  Well done.

Wednesday Weekly Links: January 1, 2014

Out with 2013, and in with 2014.  No matter what this year brings, it won’t be boring.  With that said, here’s some links for you to check out this week.

Unix

  • Getting Involved in FOSS (opensource.com): The Red Hat sponsored website has seven ways for people to get involved in various projects that share their source code and invite collaboration from others.  For those who can’t code their way out of a paper bag, there’s always writing documentation and creating digital art for the various projects, because good instructions and pretty icons can go a long way in making an application more attractive.
  • Exciting Changes to 5.0 of the Phoronix Test Suite GUI (phoronix.com):  Though it was initially written in GTK2, HTML 5 is being used instead.  According to Michael Larabel, “This new GUI to Phoronix Test Suite 5.0 is being written as an HTML5 interface. This is being done for portability and network transparency with the Phoronix Test Suite commonly being used on embedded devices and servers where there is no connected devices — remote support for PTS 5.0 HTML5 GUI can be enabled, otherwise it’s only exposed locally.”  Work on the interface is currently ongoing.
  • Now It’s Our Turn (Blog of helios):  Ken “helios” Starks has been through quite a bit over the years.  He decided to tell the story of how he is now able to give back to those who have helped him, starting with Randy Noseworthy.  It looks like the Reglue Project will be able to help bridge the digital divide more than ever.

Overlooked Pop Culture

Issue 7 of The *Nixed Report Available

Linux Mint Debian Edition
Linux Mint Debian Edition is the final destination for the 2013 Distro Journey Series.

The final issue of the magazine for 2013 is available for popular consumption.  Here’s what’s covered:

  • Social Networking Ads and How they may backfire.
  • Linux Mint Debian Edition
  • Google Drive being used on the construction of this year’s final issue as well as a preview of things to come in 2014.

 

The magazine may be downloaded here.  The clouds on the cover page courtesy of Kamil Porembiński via Creative Commons.

Wednesday Weekly Links: December 18, 2013

Steam OS
The new OS is creating quite a stir.

 

 

 

 

 

This week’s links involve a plethora of technology updates and some geek and movie culture.

Unix

  • Fedora 20 Released (LXer): Carla Schroder talks about the new release of the OS sponsored by Red Hat.  What’s interesting to note is the improved support for the ARM architecture.
  • Steam OS Review (Muktware): Swapnil Bharttiya takes a look at Valve’s new OS, currently in beta.
  • HP Chromebook 11 Chargers Recalled (MaximumPC): While Chrome OS can be seen as stable, the hardware can be another matter.  Certain chargers for HP’s Chromebook 11 are overheating and as a result have been recalled.

 

Overlooked Pop Culture

Wednesday Weekly Links: December 11, 2013

Galaxy S4 Depicted in Flames
The phone’s specs are amazing, but it can also catch houses on fire.

As we head deeper and deeper into Winter, more people are going to stay indoors to avoid the cold weather.  Eventually, people will get bored and will start killing time on the Internet.  To make things a bit more pleasant for those who happen to be bored, never fear!

Our weekly links will have you laughing, crying, and cursing multibiollion dollar corporations all at the same time.  With that said, here’s this week’s links.

Unix

 

Overlooked Pop Culture

  • There are people who are here to help you poop: We aren’t making this up.  There is a product called Squatty Potty that helps the person squat instead of sit on their toilet.  Something about making it all come out easier…….
  • Foolish users brick their XBOX One consoles (Daily Dot): Thanks to a convincing looking image via 4Chan, a number of uses enabled the developer mode on their XBOX One consoles in the hopes that they’ll be able to play their XBOX 360 games.  Unfortunately, the instructions rendered said consoles inoperable.  Remember, kids…. never follow instructions from an image board, and for crying out loud, stay out of /b/!
  • Martial arts demo curating (The Stick Chick): A martial arts expert explains why it’s best to practice certain things in a dojo before demonstrating them to the public.