Laurie Langham's articles

Linux: has the horse bolted?

Richard Stallman wants to popularise the term GNU/Linux instead of using the currently popular term Linux. He correctly states that the term Linux, besides being thoroughly inaccurate, totally fails to introduce new users to the legal and philosophical concepts that underlie the basis of the GNU/Linux OS; but is it feasible to make such a change at this late stage?

Some weeks ago, trolling through prospective articles for Free Software Daily, I encountered a blog, describing the evolution of “Linux”. It was aimed at Newbies. The blog correctly described Linus Torvalds as the creator of the Linux kernel and a few more recent developments, but that was it. No mention was made that Richard Stallman actually created much of what is now called “Linux”, no mention of the GPL, or how it works, no mention of the copyleft legal concept and no mention of other responsibilities placed on users and developers.

All of Richard Stallman's worst fears confirmed in one blog.

Do we have a "Vista for Dummies" yet?

Ryan Cartwright wrote an excellent article, Don't compare GNU/Linux with Windows or MacOS – they are not in the same game.

I ran across the same blog he is referring to, while gathering potential stories for FSD and my reaction was very similar.

Ryan questions, “I mean how can you tell how many Ubuntu installs came of a single CD?”

Seagate Freeagent Pro: hardware that comes with proprietary software

Getting an external hard drive for my laptop seemed like such a good idea when I first thought about it. Seagate have got a dinky little 750 GB affair, called the Freeagent Pro, with lights that go up and down when it’s having a bit of a think to itself, so I got myself one of those. What I didn’t know when I bought it was that the hard drive came with all sorts of issues related to proprietary software.

Using PDFedit in Kubuntu

I’m over the moon. So far over, that I’m somewhere out near Neptune at the moment.

You see, I love books. Long ago I picked out PDFs as the best digital equivalent and I’ve collected tens of thousands of free books in my digital libraries. One of the only bits of proprietary (sort of) software on my computers is Adobe, simply because it’s the best reader.

Something rotten in the State of Sweden

This entire OOXML campaign stinks!

This is being forced on everyone simply because one corporation has manufactured a back-door strategy, to maintain a software monopoly.

Around the world, we decided that we needed a new universal standard to apply to the digital equivalent of pen and paper.

Around the world, we decided on such a standard.

Microsoft chose not to take part in those deliberations.

Now, Microsoft want to tell us, “Stuv ya stanadz suggerz, wod we zeyz goez, bub.”

The standards we selected, means nothing to Microsoft, apparently.

Microsoft dreams

I won this great big lottery the other day. I rushed around and bought new houses and all the usual stuff, then I had enough left over to get a new sports car. Before I went to look at the latest Porsches and Ferraris, I thought I might have a look at the new MicroKlapt V16 F1 GT Ultimate. They had all these ads with everyone dancing around going, “Wow”, so it looked pretty good.

Save the internet before it's too late

In just a few days, the FCC will close its deliberations on Net Neutrality to outside comment.

If the giant telcos, like AT&T, Verizon, and Comcast, get their way, the FCC will abandon Net Neutrality and allow them to play favourites with big online companies who are willing to pay them the biggest bribes for favoured online treatment.

This will mean that everyone who can't pay will receive prejudiced online treatment compared to those who can.

Cleaning your OS in Kubuntu and GNOME

So, you’ve now taken the successful plunge and finally let the Microsoft nightmares fade into expensive and unpleasant memories.

You have your brand new, full-featured, Mandriva, Debian, or Kubuntu, free OS running your browser, email, and office, routines through a lovely KDE, or GNOME, desktop that’s simplicity itself to operate.

Next, you work out how to get all your free software repositories enabled and the true “Wow!” experience suddenly begins to hit you right between the eyeballs.

Ballmer’s Gold

Here, we have a mug-shot of Steven Anthony Ballmer—the same Ballmer who has been ranting and raving that the Free Software Movement has “stolen” code from his precious Microsoft Windows OS, and incorporated it into software which we... uh... “give away” for free.

Question please, Mr Ballmer;

If we “stole” our operating systems from Microsoft, then how come our operating systems never “crash” in the monotonously regular fashion that every Windows OS has done since Windows 3.11?

Is the desktop dead?

Red Hat’s, Brian Stevens, claims that the desktop is dead. This may seem a trifle premature, but from my own perspective, that has already been the case for several years.

Across the room, from where I’m typing this, I have a formal computer desk, complete with comfortable “executive” chair, adjustable foot-rest (your feet will love you till the day they drop off if you buy them one of these), nice, fast AMD64 tower case, and a 19 inch IBM-Lenovo LCD screen, to look at everything.

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