Tuesday, December 30, 2003

This site,World66.com, is probably the best example i have seen so far of a "Wiki" website. It's a travel directory , where you can add your travel tips on anything from entire regions right down to suburban areas or even small villages.

The basic tenet of a "Wiki" site is that visitors can add to the site without registering , completely anonymously. Of course , there is always the risk of malcontents adding inappropriate stuff, but this is more than balanced out (and indeed eliminated) by the genuine contributors. In fact, genuine contributors can remove or edit inappropriate additions.

So, if your town or location isn't on this site, why not add it - after all, you live there.

Sunday, December 28, 2003

Am I Patched or Not?

The I.T. Industry is shifting away from Microsoft

Companies take take take from open source

Guardian - Best British blogs of 2003

Saturday, December 20, 2003

Happy Birthday Perl - 16 years old

Perl is now old enough to have a drivers license. On that note , here's a thread snippet from Slashdot

Perl Drivers License (Score:5, Funny)
by SeanTobin (138474) *

I could just imagine the kind of drivers license issued to Perl. First off, it would have a magnetic stripe, barcode, brail, and RFID encoded driver's license number on the back. The photo would be in the visual, infra-red, and ultraviolet spectrums. The license itself would be an actual 4d hypercube turning into your social security card, credit cards, gas cards, library cards, and translations of all the above into every language depending on the licenses orientation in space-time. In the event of emergency, the license would also be a flotation device and in the rare case of ending up on a desert island can be turned into a Swiss army knife and satellite GSM phone with GPS capabilities. Biometric identification built into the license allows it to change into the proper license for whoever is holding it. The license would be powered by a kinetic energy system similar to no-wind watches. It would also have a backup fusion generator, solar cells, hydrogen fuel cells, lithium ion battery banks, and be expandable for anti-mater generators once they become available.

Then you would lose it and it would be eaten by a snake.

Re:Perl Drivers License (Score:5, Funny)
by Anonymous Coward on Saturday December 20, @12:27AM
no, no, by a python

Interview with Alan Cox, who's on a year long sabbatical from kernel development, whilst he does his MBA at Swansea University in Wales. He talks about translating KDE & Gnome into Welsh, software patents and plans for the future.

What A Crappy Present
Sound advice - in short, instead of buying your kid's or younger relatives a music CD by some big name artist, buy them a pack of 50 CD-Rs instead.

Mars Express
Only 4 days left to orbital insertion. You can see where Mars Express is here

The European Space Agency have a webcam of their control room in Darmstadt , Germany here

This is Europe's plan for landing human astronauts on the moon and Mars.

Friday, December 19, 2003

The Wonderful World of Linux 2.6

Good guide on the new features of the 2.6 kernel

KOffice 1.3 Christmas preview
No Kexi yet - that's slated for release sometime next year.

Lightweight window manager.
XFce4 Rpms for Mandrake
The latest XFce version 4 in Mandrake RPM format.

Grepmail home page
Jeremy Zawodny on grepmail
"grepmail is to email what Perl is to text processing -- a Swiss Army chainsaw."

Wednesday, December 17, 2003

New Debian based distro I came across recently - Mepis
OSNews has a detailed review here.

And here's another new one - PCLinuxOS, produced by Texstar and based on Mandrake 9.2
It gets the thumbs up from in this review by MadPenguin.

Teaching educators about free software
"I was shocked when the middle school principal told me he could not accept free software for his journalism program; that all he was allowed to use was fresh-from-the-box commercial software. "It's school district policy," he said. "We can't even bring software from home now. It's because of the licensing. There are big fines for using unlicensed software. We can't risk it." This was an educated man, a fine teacher and administrator, but he knew nothing about the licensing terms under which Linux, OpenOffice, and many other fine programs are distributed. Neither, apparently, did his superiors in the school district administration. We need to teach them."

Behlendorf: Open source at a 'tipping point'
KDE and Debian developers call for greater desktop collaboration

Bruce Perens announces that UserLinux will use Gnome & PostgreSQL
No Kde due to QT "licensing" issues , and no MySQL either.

The feedback isn't that good . Over here the KDE Developers forum discuss the decision. Again, the general mood isn't favourable.

Tuesday, December 16, 2003

Joel Spolsky has a review here of The Art Of Unix Programming by Eric Raymond.

There's an amusing parable here from this book on the difficulties of code re-use with binary libraries (as opposed to open source Linux libraries).

Linux Questions.org
Lots of forums and discussion on everything to do with Linux. Highly recommended.

Linux Questions interviews Gael Duval of Mandrakesoft

Sunday, December 14, 2003

Saddam Arrested - Iranian news agency

BBC is reporting this too

Wednesday, December 10, 2003

Came across this site whilst Googling for something else: Tech Recipes
Nice layout , and there's lots of useful nuggets of sysadmin info on there. I like the comment system on each recipe as well - a kind of peer review. You can add your own recipes as well if you want to contribute. I certainly will be.

Here's a few examples of the receipes posted up:
How to safely reboot a Linux box
Extract a gzip compressed tar archive in Linux
How to change the MySQL root password
Loop over a set of files from the shell

There's a contest over here on giving RSS a catchier name. Feel free to drop your suggestions in. Searchblog is also running an open thread on better names for RSS.

Microsoft are patching, even though they dont know how the patch is getting out
Building a low budget Tivo
Microsoft running on Microsoft again
After months of running on Linux.
UK Anti-spam laws come into force
UK govt pitches Sun as OSS challenger for 500k desktops
Mr Ballmer has already got his plane tickets...

Monday, December 08, 2003

Sun Negiotiating With WalMart Over Java Desktop
Slashdot crowd aren't impressed. And quite right too - the Sun Java Desktop has nothing to do with Java - it's a Gnome Desktop running on Linux with a Java VM thrown in.

SF Chronicle Interviews Marc Andressen
The creator of Netscape talks about the post-dot com era.

Slashdot mentions SETI at Homes best candidates
A signal called SHGb11+15a looks like being the best candidate at present.

Slashdot - Winners and Losers In Outsourcing
Inland Revenue Might Ditch EDS

UK NHS trials Sun Linux, threatens 800k user defection from MS
Is Ballmer on the plane yet?

Friday, December 05, 2003

Using chkconfig & /sbin/service to manage run start up scripts in RedHat

Avoiding plain text POP passwords with Stunnel

Secure Remote Logging with syslog-ng and stunnel HOWTO

Stunnel home page

Looking for RootKits on your comprimised box (google groups discussion)

Wednesday, December 03, 2003

Remote Logging with Snort

First it was kernel.org, and then Debian was hacked - now it's
Gentoo's turn.

Sounds like a concerted effort to discredit OSS.