A Deep Look Into FireFox 3 beta 3

I’ve been playing around with FireFox 3.0 (FF3, FFox 3) for a while now, using both pre-compiled releases and compiling my own. Besides FF3 being noticeably faster than FF2, the UI changes are subtle for the most part, so one really has to poke around in order to see where it might differ from FFox 2. Now I’ve run across this new document…

A deep look to Firefox 3 Beta 3
http://mozillalinks.org/wp/2008/02/a-deep-look-to-firefox-3-beta-3/print/

…by Percey Cabello that delves into the details and is quite helpful.

See also…

Firefox 3.0b3 What’s New?
http://en-us.www.mozilla.com/en-US/firefox/3.0b3/whatsnew/

=JeffH sez check it out!

OLPC XO-1’s from the “Give 1, Get 1” program arrive in Mongolia

We participated in the OLPC Foundation‘s “Give 1, Get 1” (G1G1) program while it was open this last fall (although it was over-subscribed and we have yet to receive our units), BUT! But: I just received an update from OLPC and it included a link to a page they recently put up where they provide info about, and LOTS of pictures of, the donated G1G1 units being used in Mongolia..

OLPC Mongolia/Ulaanbaatar
http://wiki.laptop.org/go/Ulaanbaatar

They indicate on this page, dated 12-Jan-2008, that..

“Mongolia is the first beneficiary of the Give One Get One program. Laptops have begun to arrive and a team from OLPC, including Carla Gomez Monroy, Jan Jungclaus, and Enkhmunkh Zurgaanjin are on the ground to help with the initial deployment. …”

=JeffH sez CONGRATULATIONS!

I Done Left Los Windows…

So as is fairly explicit in a couple of prior posts, I’ve pretty much quit using Microsoft Windows on my personal machine, and am running (K)ubuntu 6.10 “Edgy Eft” natively on it. I’ve been doing this for about 9 months now and haven’t looked back. When I mentioned to a Microsoftie colleague that I’d done this, his response was “what about all your tools?” — and we got interrupted before I could respond. Though the answer to that question is pretty easy: I am still using them for the most part. Prior to this migration, I used Firefox and Thunderbird on Windows, and I hadn’t used Microsoft Office for over three years. Rather, I’ve been using OpenOffice (for more than four years now).

Also, migrating over to an environment where all the development tools one could want is just an easy “apt-get” away has been very nice.

The only thing I use windows for these days is to sync my Palm Treo. I haven’t yet made the time to figure out and config proper synchronization for the latest Palm address book and contacts with “extended fields”, and at the time I made the migration (early spring 2007), the info I got said that the Linux-based Palm tools didn’t yet support the “extended fields”. So I’m running Windows XP as a “guest” in a virtual machine, and all I use it for is sync’g my Treo.

Oh, how come I didn’t migrate to an Apple Mac (as many of my colleagues have done)? Well, as far as I’m concerned, there’s very little difference between Microsoft and Apple — they are both into closed proprietary systems, and their leaders … well, nevermind. You get the idea I trust. Oh, and yeah, I don’t like the MacOS user interface very much (I used Macs for several years in the 90s, so I have first-hand experience, and the things I don’t like about it haven’t really changed), and if I’m just going to end up running it as bare-X-on-top-of-*nix, as folks have pointed out I can do, I might as well just do that directly — I don’t think Apple’s hardware is all it’s made out to be (and you pay a premium for it). Besides, I like Dell’s laptops, and if that changes, I can get hardware from some other x86-wielding manufacturer, and even use processors from folks other than Intel, e.g. AMD.

So, there you go. I’m gone, and I doubt I’ll be back.

Ubuntu 7.10 DVDs available at Barnes & Noble and Borders

I was browsing in the newsstand section at my local Barnes & Noble recently, and noticed a bright red & white magazine with “Ubuntu 7.10 + edubuntu, kubuntu, xubuntu” across its cover. Upon reading further I noticed it contains two bootable DVDs, one with the aforementioned four distributions in 32-bit, and the other with the same four in 64-bit. The price is $15. Wow, very cool. As I am presently running Kubuntu 6.10 “Edgy Eft” on my lapstation and thinking about upgrading, I bought it. I’ve played around with the 32-bit DVD and booted up each of the distros, and installed Kubuntu on a separate disk just to check if all works ok, and it did.

The magazine includes articles about installing and configuring, with lots of illustrations and screen shots. Well-suited for checking-out Ubuntu by newly interested parties.

Apparently, the publishing company behind this (as well as “Linux Identity Office” and “Fedora 8 – Linux Identity Kit“) is OXYpress LLC, with presences in both France and the USA.

Of course, one can always download any and all flavors of Ubuntu for free from..

http://www.ubuntu.com/getubuntu

..but I’ve been wanting to check out the edubuntu and xubuntu flavors, as well as 64-bit Kubuntu, so picking it up in a nice pre-done package is great. Saves the hassle of downloading and burning discs and such.

I also noted a similar “MandrakeGNU/Linux distro magazine, apparently from a different publisher (but I’m not sure, don’t quote me).

=JeffH sez check it out 😉

A Fool’s Errand? I don’t think so — Beyond War

I attended this talk entitled “Inventing Public Key Cryptography: A Fool’s Errand: Act 2” yesterday at Stanford‘s CS department. It was given by Martin Hellman, one of the inventors of public key cryptography, and also a participant in the Beyond War effort in the 1980’s, which has recently been re-launched. The 80’s Beyond War effort yielded a book, “Breakthrough: Emerging New Thinking“, which is available online, and worth perusing.

The talk was quite interesting, and I certainly think that engaging with people all over the world in order to try to reduce the amount of violence is a worthy, and certainly not foolish, cause.

=JeffH sez check it out!

My new keyboard

Ohmigawds, I haven’t blogged here for almost a year. Yikes! Guess I’ve been too busy with “work” and “life“. Apologies dear readers (mebbe two of you out there?).

Anyway, I hacked up my personal and work computer environment in several ways over the last almost-year. The most obvious hack to me being the one whose results I stare at below my hands when I forget which key is where..

My newly hacked keyboard, neato, eh?

I must credit xkcd for the inspiration. Now where did I stash those “Actual Size” stickers?!@$%

Of course, see also: IN UR REALITY.

8^)