If you want to buy me something, get me a laptop with one of these. Thanks, I appreciate it.
Good UI != Graphics?
I tried out Ximian Evolution today. It’s an email client, actually more a personal information manager, that looks a lot like Outlook, except that Ximian is free, runs on *ix and will probably not get your computer infected with 298374987 different interesting yet unfriendly viruses. Hey, interestingly, it seems the correct plural is “viruses” and NOT “viri”. If you’re a pedant, dodge this. In anycase, usually I use mutt which, unlike Evolution, is exclusively text-based and 100% hot-key (shortcut) driven.
The man who is not a socialist at twenty has no heart, but if he is still a socialist at forty he has no head. — Aristide Briand (1862 – 1932)
All operating systems suck
At least, all operating systems that I’ve worked with suck in some way or another. These are not minor quibbles, but major problems. It seems these fundamental problems are present in both open and closed source OSen. You’ve probably read The Cathedral and the Bazaar by Eric Raymond, so you know the difference between the two methodologies. Most of the open source development that I’ve come into contact with adheres to the Bazaar philosophy.
Improve that UI
This guide to user interface differences between Winblows and Mac OS X (by Apple) should be consulted when you ever have to think about getting that UI perfect. Apple makes several very valid and straightforward points.
Death to censorship
Yahoo reports that a group of record labels (UMG, Sony, RCA and Warner Brothers Records) are suing American back-bone providers because they allow end-users to download illegal music from Listen4ever.com. The preposterousness of this aside, should they succeed, a precedent for backbone-level censorship on the internet will be created. Personally, I don’t condone the illegal download of music (and I also don’t care if you do download your music like that), but I do feel very strongly about the current freedom of information flow.
William Gibson knew it then…
This article in Wired documents the efforts of a scientist to restore sight with brain implants and external signal processing and optical acquisition equipment. It also mentions the work of one or two other scientists in the field. I read Neuromancer years ago and it was very good. I read it very recently again and suffered a severe attack of goose-flesh. Gibson’s visions of the future are super-naturally accurate: if you haven’t read this book yet, stop what you’re doing now and start.
11:14:37 up 43 days, 23:01, 2 users, load average: 0.27, 0.24, 0.29
It’s pure bliss when your workstation doesn’t need to reboot 43 times per day, but just keeps chugging along doing its job…