Posts Tagged ‘Open source

20
Apr
10

BeeSeek

Very often there are seriously awesome projects being undertaken which we know nothing of. BeeSeek is one such gem of a project.

BeeSeek is a project intended to build a free open-source search engine based on peer to peer (P2P) technology.

It intends to create an effective search engine which doesnt compromise on user’s privacy. At the moment none of the popular search engines are open source ones, BeeSeek intends to change that by creating a source code which will be accessible to everyone.

The developers are working on the project and the community seeks more of them, web editors, marketing experts etc. As of now there isnt a stable release of BeeSeek. But you can try out their beta search engine : www.beta.beeseek.org

To be frank, such a project deserves attention and all the help it can get.

To know more about BeeSeek and help the BeeSeek community, check out the links below:

Wiki: http://wiki.beeseek.org/
Home Page: http://www.beeseek.org/
Launchpad: https://launchpad.net/beeseek

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01
Apr
10

Ubuntu 10.04 beta1 – a closer look (part 2)

(For Part 1 of post, click on this link: Ubuntu 10.04 beta1 a closer look – part 1)

This discussion is based on Ubuntu 10.04 Desktop Edition (64 bit version). You can download the latest beta releases, instructions here: Lucid Lynx Beta Released

I was so far using Ubuntu 9.10 (Karmic Koala). Yesterday I tried to “upgrade” it to Ubuntu 10.04 beta1. I have since then come across lots and lots of obstacles, features, tweaks etc. I will try and discuss as many I can.

First things first, be very careful about upgrading. The upgrading process itself worked fine for me, however problems started when I restarted my PC after the upgrade (the upgrade manager had downloaded around 2GB of data from the Ubuntu servers). The Appearances panel stopped working due to a DBus error and unfortunately the network applet stopped working as well (aka it broke). I was left in the lurch because I couldnt connect to the internet and do an upgrade. And neither could I browse the web for solutions. The only way out was to use the spare live CDs I had (a lesson for all here, dont throw away your live CDs, they can come in very handy sometimes) and search for solutions. I found none across the web. Maybe people werent facing the problems I was facing, maybe they didnt care to post it. Anyway, I didnt find any solutions, thats the point.

So being left with absolutely no other option but to format and do a fresh install, I backed up my data and did that. (Frankly, this time around, I thought the upgrade would work for me, but clearly it was not to be. Its official now, I’m very unlucky when it comes to upgrading. I would also advise anyone running 9.10 to hold his horses. Dont upgrade right now, wait till the final stable release comes out. And even if you want to experience 10.04, try it from the live CD or do a fresh install.) It took a lot of time (backing up all the data and then installing) but I guess it was worth all that. The installation went ahead smoothly and it brought me straight to the Ubuntu 10.04 desktop. Tell you what, the Ambience theme looks better than it does in the pictures. I dont think I’ll be changing themes very soon.

Packages:

All the packages in the repositories have been updated and currently more often than not its the latest version. Chromium (the open-source counterpart of Google Chrome) has been added to the repositories now, so you can now directly install it from the Ubuntu Software Center. (However if you want the very latest versions of Chromium you should add its repositories. A complete guide to do that is given here: Install Chromium Browser)

Now this latest version concept is really good when it comes to most softwares but not when it comes to Wine. The latest version of Wine is installed by default which is 1.1.41. However I have always found 1.1.31 to be the best version for playing games etc. Most of the games I have dont run well on the latest version of Wine. I still havent figured out a way to roll back to the previous release as the “Force version” option on synaptic isnt working for Wine. I will post a solution as soon as I find out.
(How do you install Wine? Its pretty easy: How to Install Wine)

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SOLUTION : A temporary solution has been found thanks to Ubuntuforums. You can download the relevant package from Launchpad. The previous ‘stable’ version of Wine was 1.1.31, you can download the 32 bit version from this page and the 64 bit version from this page. Tip: Remove the installed version of Wine before you install these versions to avoid complications.

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Saddest part? Compiz. Sorry, it just is the saddest part about 10.04. You will have to install Compiz as you usually would from the Ubuntu software center (See here for more info: Getting Compiz to work on Ubuntu). The burn effect isnt available anymore! (Is there an emoticon for crying out loud?)
And the cube isnt really that magnificent anymore. The ‘jutting out’ effect of windows while rotating the cube is absolutely gone, vanished. A small tip here, if you cant add 4 workspaces from compiz (in order to enable the cube), try right-clicking on the workspace and then Preferences and then select the number of columns as 4. But I hope the compiz developers will figure out a solution soon.

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SOLUTION : If you have this problem where you cant see Compiz Animations Add-on, install this package – compiz-fusion-plugins-extra from the synaptic or from the terminal:

sudo apt-get install compiz-fusion-plugins-extra

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Other than these small glitches, everything works perfectly and I think Canonical has done a great job in aggregating all these softwares. Kudos.

Drivers:

Impressive is an understatement. Ubuntu 10.04 has the very very latest Nvidia drivers now (version 195.x.x) and thats just great. This version works perfectly and installing them is an absolute joy. Simply go to System > Administration > Hardware Drivers and select the recommended drivers. Activate it and it will download and install. Restart you computer and you’re done.

Interface:

Stunning is the word. Please stop complaining. The interface is simply breathtaking, every since inch of space has been utilised to perfection. And although I dont quite like the buttons on the left (you can shift it back to the right: Moving buttons), I think I can forgive the developers and designers simply because the rest of the interface is really awesome. IMs, facebook, gmail chats etc. were never easier and this just is so breathtakingly refreshing.

So far so good. I will keep you posted on anything relevant I come across. Ciao!

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26
Mar
10

CD/DVD Burning Software

This is one topic which I should have discussed long back, but hey better late than never.

Okay, so when it comes to CD/DVD burning softwares, there are loads and loads of GNOME softwares out there, most notably, GNOME Baker and Brasero (which is installed by default on Ubuntu). However none of these softwares support verification of burned discs. That for me is a bit of a let down as I prefer to verify my discs after every burning process.

I have also tried quite a few other lesser known apps as well. But none of these softwares could rival the ultimate big daddy of all disc burning apps, Nero. Although Nero is generally considered to be a Windows software, there is actually a Linux counterpart. From what I have gathered, the Linux version is quite functional and useful. However, Nero is a closed source software and its not free. You can download the demo version but as you would expect, the swankier features of Nero Linux are reserved for people who actually buy the full version. (Link to the official Nero Linux site: www.nero.com/enu/linux4.html)

When I converted from Windows to Linux this absence of a proper burning tool for GNOME was a big problem for me. But fortunately, as with everything Linux, there is always a way out.

Are you averse to using KDE softwares on GNOME? Well, if you are I think its time you let go of that apprehension. K3B is a KDE burning tool which is at par with any burning software be it on Windows or Linux. Its free (of course!) and its open source. Hence, you have absolutely no reason not to give it a try. And fortunately, it works perfectly on GNOME. So, if you’re using Ubuntu, you can definitely give K3B a go.

The interface isnt that great, but whats great is the innumerable options which you get. You can configure every aspect of the software and yes, it does support that verification of CD/DVDs. In my opinion, if you’re on Linux, K3B should be your preferred burning tool.

Here’s a screenshot of K3B (Version: 1.68.0)

How to install:

K3B can be installed from the Ubuntu Software Center.

OR

From the terminal you can type : sudo apt-get install k3b

Use K3B and I’m sure you’ll have a new sense of respect for KDE softwares.

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23
Mar
10

World Of Goo

Placing a goo ball to construct a bridge.
Image via Wikipedia

Not a very enticing name for a game dont you think? Anyway, World of Goo is a physics based puzzle / construction game. The millions of Goo Balls who live in the beautiful World of Goo don’t know that they are in a game, or that they are extremely delicious.

Although the game can get extremely challenging at times, its surprisingly fresh both in terms of graphics and gameplay. It has a Windows, Mac as well as a Linux (yeah!) version. Mind you though, this is a closed-source game (albeit it uses many open source elements). Also, its not a free game, the full version of the game costs $20. However there’s a demo version available on their website which is completely free to download. Hence, you could give it a try before you decide to buy.

Official Site of World of Goo : www.worldofgoo.com
Download links : www.worldofgoo.com/dl2.php?lk=demo

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09
Mar
10

Install Chromium Browser

Chromium browser is the open source counterpart of Google Chrome. Most of the development/features in Chromium end up in Google Chrome. So, if you are uncomfortable with Google’s privacy policy or with the use of a closed source software, you should give Chromium a go. It has absolutely the same interface as Google Chrome, hence you need not worry about getting used to it.

Here’s a screenshot of Chromium browser:

How to install Chomium :

Go to System > Administration > Software Sources and click on the Other Software. Now click on the Add button and add the following lines ONE BY ONE (copy paste the first line, click on Add Source and then copy paste the second line and then add it):

deb http://ppa.launchpad.net/chromium-daily/ppa/ubuntu karmic main

deb-src http://ppa.launchpad.net/chromium-daily/ppa/ubuntu karmic main

Next, type the following in the Terminal:

sudo apt-key adv –recv-keys –keyserver keyserver.ubuntu.com 0xfbef0d696de1c72ba5a835fe5a9bf3bb4e5e17b5

Next type the following in the Terminal:

sudo apt-get update

sudo apt-get install chromium-browser

Thats it. Chromium browser can be accessed from Applications > Internet > Chromium Browser

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