Tropical Ice Cube Newsletter #7: A Flurry of News!

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Jean-Philippe 'Tropical Ice Cube' Monteiro

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Feb 15, 2009, 11:23:47 PM2/15/09
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[My apologies if you receive this message 2 or 3 times: it means you are a very committed person
registered to the 3 fine groups I send this NewsLettre to!]

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Visit http://tic.zenerves.net for a full list of available Open Source alternatives for your
computing performance and pleasure + more info and help.
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Howdy, Nixettes and Nixers!

Welcome to issue 7 of the Tropical Ice Cube Newsletter,
your weekly dose of OpenSOUrce news here in Phnom Penh.


HOT NEWS:

Debian 5 "Lenny" is out!
And for all of us, non "ubuntu-latest-latest-bigger-number-means-better-software" freaks, it is
great news to welcome the release of a stable Linux distribution that you will be able to
confidently install on your system without already thinking of doing it all over again in 6 months.
Debian is your Rock Solid choice for anything: running a server, a graphic workstation, host a
coimmunity website, build a mediaplayer, or just be your everyday desktop workhorse: Debian is all
that thanks to its Synaptic package management system and more than 17.000 tried, tested, stable
software available in their repositories. And trust me: they worked on it for 22 months before
deeming it good enough for us, mere mortals! If that doesn't tells you something is wrong with
Ubuntu, then I don't know what can.

Downloading Now, expect them in 2 days (cd versions) to 8 days (full dvd's), follow me on twitter or
facebook (see below) to get updated on availability and receive yours for free.

Latest downloads:
Ubuntu 8.04.2, a fresh re-spin of 8.04.2 with all up-to-date packages inside for a lighter updating
process after initial install. All available, 32/64 bits, Home & Server.

ArchLinux now available for 32 bits platforms. Geeks, warm up your Code, Arch isn't for noobs!

Join the Facebook Tropical Ice Cube Group:
http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=62414700265

Follow my twitteries:
http://twitter.com/tropicalicecube

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SHOWCASE: Archlinux

http://archlinux.org - I became interested by ArchLinux when I first read about their latest release
on http://distrowatch.com, but also when I realised my MonsterGaming LiveDVD from Linux-gamers.net
was in fact based on Arch - I can tell you it is a realyl fast, unobtrusive distro that is very
successful at delivering graphic-heavy 3D shooters from a live disc . Anybody interested may ask
for more: Arch is a rolling-release, which means you update it continuously, you never re-install
or have to switch to newer version, you can just keep it up-to date for as long as you are able to
maintain your own config files tidy. Arch 2009.0 is definitely going to replace Sabayon4 here @
Tropical Central as Second/Rescue/Testbed distro on my alternate hard drive. May it surpass my
Slackware12.2? We'll see! In the gaming department, if for that alone, it surely will!

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LATEST Additions to the DISTROthèque Repository:
http://tic.zenerves.net/latest_news.html

Hacker Delight:
Arch 2008.1

Ubuntu is a drug:
32 and 64 bits, Server and Desktop editions of
8.04.2 LTS, latest re-spin of the long term support U.

Linux, boxed:
Ubuntu 8.10 Box-Editions - real, shiny ones!
KhmerOS openSUSE 11 - fresh from the Open Institute.

Linux, latest:
Mint6 and openSUSE11.1 came afresh thanks to my subscription to LinuxFormat magazine - this DVD's
come with lots of additional goodies.

Specialised:
eBox 0.12.3 server for easy administration of corporate networks.


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!! Don't Forget !!
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The Tropical Ice Cube always keep the 10 most important Linux Distributions available in their most
recent release figure - JUST ASK!

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This Week recommended READINGS:

New is BAD, new is SLOW (stop upgrading like mad):
http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?page=article&item=ubuntu_macosx&num=1

SocioGeeks special: Mix Gmail and FaceBook!
http://arstechnica.com/web/news/2009/02/hands-on-xoopit-pokes-gmail-adds-it-to-facebook.ars

Don't click on just about anything. Just don't, ok?
http://www.theregister.co.uk/2009/02/13/twitter_clickjack_attack/

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As Ever, always available:
OpenSource Software for M$:

Firefox 3 - get rid of Internet Explorer!
OpenOffice 3 - get rid of Word/Excell/etc!
The Gimp 2.6 - get rid of Photoshop!
Thunderbird 2 - get rid of outlook/outlook express
VLC 0.9 - Well, VLC is better than anything else really.

And the Same in Khmer:
[check http://www.khmeros.info for more]
OpenOffice - full offoce suite
Moyura, Email client
Merkhala, Web browser
+ Unicode Typing Trainer for Windows and more.


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CONTRIBUTE!

T.I.C could benefit from your help: see http://tic.zenerves.net/faq.html#contribute to check how you
can participate in this project and help spread Free Software further in Phnom Penh and Cambodia.

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TwitMe! Hook to http://twitter.com/tropicalicecube.

Spread the newsletter! Send it to your friends,
get them to register to the
Phnom Penh Linux User Group
(Yes, that is the PPLUG)
at:
http://groups.google.com/group/pplug


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"Send a Text Message, Receive Linux for Free"

Getting your computer running Open Source, free software has never been so easy in Phnom Penh: Just
send us a Text Message from your Mobile Phone, and get the Linux Distribution of your choice, for
free!

Text/call on 012 561 005 with either:

* Your request for Linux distro, with pick-up yourself at my office: I will reply with street
address and delay/time to pick up the disc;
or
* Your distro request with your street address and possible hours for delivery; cost is 1usd per
disc/dvd, Business Hours best.

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This newsletter brought to you by
Jean-Philippe Monteiro
The Tropical Ice Cube
DISTROtheque Maintainer

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twit: tropicalicecube
web: tropicalicecube.zenerves.net
mail: tic /AT\ zenerves.net
Face: Tropicalicecube Phnompenh
Mob: 012 561 005

--Slackware 12.2 / Enlightenment DR16--

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Disclaimer:
This "Newsletter" intends to be low-traffic and informative, to be sent maximum of once a week.
The editor chooses which groups/lists to send this newsletter to and is a member of said
groups/lists. If you think it is inappropriate, please bring your complaint to your group/list
administrator to ban me from sending to the group, but first please consider other members of the
group may enjoy reading it!

Jean-Philippe 'Tropical Ice Cube' Monteiro

unread,
Feb 16, 2009, 7:08:16 AM2/16/09
to pp...@googlegroups.com
On Monday 16 February 2009, j. Tim Denny wrote:
> Jean-Phillipe
>
> seems you are really down on Ubuntu in this news letter? what is wrong?
> chat?
>
> cheers
> tim

Hi Tim, Ye Chanpion of Looong Threads here on our PPlug planet!

Old story between me and U - I'll put it down to the famous motto: "Linux is all about Choices" -
When one distro is on such a World Domination Rampage, the future just looks gloom again. And in
this case, a rather brownish shade of gloom, which doesn't help at all.

:)

http://getshotwithlinux.zenerves.net/2008/08/top-10-reasons-not-to-use-ubuntu.html

The long-ish answer is that progress has never meant "Better"; it just means "Different" in all
aspects of human life.

it's the same old story:
A hundred years ago, there where on traffic jams, it was so better
A hundred years ago there where no ambulances, and that sucks.

[The first one to say that a hundred years ago you could be at the hospital faster because of the
uselessness of ambulances in traffic jams is to me a very healthy individual, thank you!)
_______________________________________________________________________________________________

And so it goes with software; once Linux was blazingly fast on your 256megs of ram old laptop, and 2
years later OpenOffice takes a full minute to start, crashes and do not recover stuff because the
RAM is overcrowded, you aging old 5400rpm IDE swap disk stuffed... Not mentioning that your
trackpad module was dropped in the meantime, deemed obsolete, and your only solution is to stick
with an unsupported, outdated distribution that you can't really maintain...

The Benchmark Story in Newsletter #7 is true, and I don't care much about Mac OS X results since
they run an X server too, and they do push upstream lines of code to the BSD project - which is
more than what Ubuntu does, since U recipe for victory is to attract, and keep attracted in the
halo of it's brownish, t(h)ree-hugging warm light a maximum of individuals who would contribute to
U rather than push stuff upstream. And U doesn't fix the kernel, U patches it for it's own use,
that's all.

http://www.linuxquestions.org/questions/showthread.php?p=3443116#post3443116

The above is only my post, but if you read upwards, someone like me suffered a regression in
hardware support. Slackware's boss, P. Volkerding, said it: WHY FIX IT IF IT AIN'T BROKEN?

[Yes, I run Slackware!]

Watchdogs of the OpenSource Movement considers the kernel a viable project because... it is growing
10.000 lines a year - !YIKES, soon my 2.66DualCore2 monster won't be able to handle it!

And I say: It's all because of U.
http://forums.fedoraforum.org/showpost.php?p=1166026&postcount=47

Because of this pressure put on a six-months release cycle - something that only works for them,
because it contributed to attract a crowd of novelty-avid followers and tinkerers that are happy
re-installing their system every six months. Sh*t, I like to fool around, but I use sandboxes and
virtualmachines for that, not my desktop!

C'mon, when you watch the websphere today, it's like every distro release out there has to be on U's
pace. That' s crazy. Since when do you hurry respectable old ladies in the stairwell? Debian and
Slackware both looks like they are running out of breadth, while knowing they can't compete.
Luckily, they achieve stable releases we can work on. KDE 3.5.10 anyone? You can't beat Konqueror
wealth of features and file handling compliances in 3.5.10.


I _just_ mistakenly, as root, deleted my full /usr folder. Has anything stopped running? no, Slack
is light on RAM. How long did it take me to recover a system that just lost _all_ it's executables?
25 minutes, including the extra tarballs and special Window Manager I compiled from source. (e16)

Did I had to reboot? No. I am still writing to you. :)


Rock Solid Old Dog - that's the way it should be.

Bleeding Edge should be an option, not a competition. But it seems it has become part of linux
success, and as such it is now an egg/chicken problem.

So, to people out there that would have made it down here: NEVER assume a newer version number to be
better; If your version is working, KEEP IT! And if you do have issues, don't assume: you can only
click on "upgrade" with hope, nothing more.

Jean-Philippe - Slackware 12.2.
--
Celebrate Hannibal Day this year. Take an elephant to lunch.

Don Robertson

unread,
Feb 16, 2009, 6:12:19 PM2/16/09
to pp...@googlegroups.com
Jean-Philippe 'Tropical Ice Cube' Monteiro wrote:
> On Monday 16 February 2009, j. Tim Denny wrote:
>> Jean-Phillipe
>>
>> seems you are really down on Ubuntu in this news letter? what is wrong?
>> chat?
>>
>> cheers
>> tim
>
> Hi Tim, Ye Chanpion of Looong Threads here on our PPlug planet!
>
> Old story between me and U - I'll put it down to the famous motto: "Linux is all about Choices" -
> When one distro is on such a World Domination Rampage, the future just looks gloom again. And in
> this case, a rather brownish shade of gloom, which doesn't help at all.
>

This is the sort of thing that makes me want to dump Linux and go back
to Windows, and judging from some of the NZ lists, a lot of people
agree. Joining a minority religion and getting abused for choosing the
wrong sect just turns people off.

It reminds me of the scene in "Life of Brian" where the Popular Peoples
Front for the Liberation of Judea is condemning the the Peoples Peoples
Front for the Liberation of Judea, and they both condemn some other
group who's name I forget.

It also reminds me of Green politics. 90% of the time seemed to be
wasted by people trying to be greener than thou - "Well, I live in a
cave with no running water and live on ant faeces". "Ahh - but you still
exhale, you planet killing fascist". "So why don't we get people coming
to our meetings any more?"

It's all about choice - so long as you make the 'right' choice. If you
make the 'wrong' choice, your just 'novelty-avid followers and tinkerers
that are happy re-installing their system every six months'

> New is BAD, new is SLOW (stop upgrading like mad):

The only important benchmark is "does it help you get what you want to
do done better, more easily and/or more quickly'. Better, more easily
and more quickly are choices - the user can decide what's important.
These benchmark tests are just publicity for the benchmark software and
all they prove is that on a particular piece of hardware with a
particular chip set, graphics card etc.. and OS, the benchmark software
runs faster or slower.

BTW - did you hear about the latest James Bond movie? Apparently the
super villain tries to take over the world by translating obscure free
software into obscure African languages and mailing disks around the
world for free.

> Disclaimer:
> This "Newsletter" intends to be low-traffic and informative, to be sent maximum of once a week.
> The editor chooses which groups/lists to send this newsletter to and is a member of said
> groups/lists. If you think it is inappropriate, please bring your complaint to your group/list
> administrator to ban me from sending to the group, but first please consider other members of the
> group may enjoy reading it!

You might want to set up your own list and give us the *choice* of
subscribing or not. You could post an announcement "Latest news letter
out now", with highlights and a URL to click on.

You could use Google Groups - oops - lots of people use Google now, so I
guess they are evil, too.

Don
Self-confessed novelty-avid tinkerer

don.vcf

Chas DiBella

unread,
Feb 16, 2009, 11:24:53 PM2/16/09
to pp...@googlegroups.com
> > "Linux is all about Choices"

> You might want to set up your own list and give


> us the *choice* of subscribing or not.

I appreciate all input, participation, and enthusiasm,
but also think signing up one list into another list
is going a bit far, but was waiting for other voices.

I manage many lists, and could do that too as a means
of promotion, but it seems like a bit much, and a
periodic announcement would do.

Charles
Siem Reap
bikepaths.org

Jean-Philippe

unread,
Feb 17, 2009, 6:11:25 AM2/17/09
to pp...@googlegroups.com
Hi Don

:D I can't be greener than that, that's for sure :D

Now, I am deadly serious about the negative impact of this Novelty War. The usual grief "I don't run Linux because it doesn't work" is still out there, and getting unstable systems to people isn't going to solve that. I can crash Compiz in three minutes - OK, that's me, and Compiz is useless in real life. But my wife can crash it too, and I swear that the noise she's making when it happens tells me she didn't do it on purpose.

[Then, actually, anybody coming for advice to me gets back with Ubuntu, because it will really help them start. And you can't find better community support than with UbuntuForums.]

Jean-Philippe

2009/2/17 Don Robertson <d...@robertson.net.nz>

It also reminds me of Green politics. 90% of the time seemed to be
wasted by people trying to be greener than thou - "Well, I live in a
cave with no running water and live on ant faeces". "Ahh - but you still
exhale, you planet killing fascist". "So why don't we get people coming
to our meetings any more?"

[...]


> New is BAD, new is SLOW (stop upgrading like mad):

The only important benchmark is "does it help you get what you want to
do done better, more easily and/or more quickly'. Better, more easily
and more quickly are choices - the user can decide what's important.
These benchmark tests are just publicity for the benchmark software and
all they prove is that on a particular piece of hardware with a
particular chip set, graphics card etc.. and OS, the benchmark software
runs faster or slower.

BTW - did you hear about the latest James Bond movie? Apparently the
super villain tries to take over the world by translating obscure free
software into obscure African languages and mailing disks around the
world for free.

[...]

Don Robertson

unread,
Feb 17, 2009, 6:15:59 PM2/17/09
to pp...@googlegroups.com
On 18/02/2009, Jean-Philippe <j...@zenerves.net> wrote:
> Hi Don
>
> :D I can't be greener than that, that's for sure :D
>
Yeah - well I apologise (a bit :-|) You got me on a bad day. We have
two Linux User Groups in Christchurch - a city of 300 000 - that do
not talk to each other. They meet at opposite ends of the same street.
Admittedly one is at no. 66 (with five or so people attending), the
other is at no. 1046 (20 at the meeting I went to). I'd yell at them
but I still want of them to hire me :-)

> Now, I am deadly serious about the negative impact of this Novelty War. The
> usual grief "I don't run Linux because it doesn't work" is still out there,
> and getting unstable systems to people isn't going to solve that. I can
> crash Compiz in three minutes - OK, that's me, and Compiz is useless in real
> life. But my wife can crash it too, and I swear that the noise she's making
> when it happens tells me she didn't do it on purpose.
>
> [Then, actually, anybody coming for advice to me gets back with Ubuntu,
> because it will really help them start. And you can't find better community
> support than with UbuntuForums.]
>

Choice is a good thing but the people who are into marketing and
pschology will tell you too much choice overwhelms and confuses
people. It is better to offer fewer choices.

Also, if you want to support a large number of users, like, say the
Ministry of Education or NiDA, consistancy is the key. Having
documentation with screen shots of Gnome while confronted with a KDE
Desktop does not work. Let alone *your* desktop :-)

Here in New Zealand the Government will pay for a support contract for
schools if they choose SUSE Enterprise or Windows server. At the
moment I am on Ubuntu (well - kind of a mixture of Ubuntu, Edubuntu
and Kubuntu and some other things. I *need* to reinstall every six
months. Maybe I should start to charge myself to support my own
machine) but I could well be on SUSE before long.

Onother cool thing is I can log onto the Christcurch City Library
website, and then access the Safari Bookshelf.

Anyway - on a public terminal and my time is up. But no way am I going
back to Windows :-(

Don

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