Category Archives: Tech

News about Tech stuff that I follow

Google Plus First Look

Thanks to Robinson I got a Google Plus invite. I did manage to invite a few of my friends using a workaround before Google decided to stop new users from signing up. After using Google Plus for a few hours since morning, I have mixed opinion about the product. Some features are great while some are not upto the mark.

Before I begin, I must highlight two of the coolest features offered by Google Plus. One is a group video chat right out of the box and the other is group sms. Although I have not used these two, I believe these two can take away a large chunk of users from Facebook.

One of the best things that I like about this is the ability to add friends as circles. Just drag-drop them to new circles and drag-drop out of circles to remove them. Though this is same as lists in FB, I feel this is better implemented. Not because of the cool UI but because right from the first friend you add, you put that person in a circle. In FB, initially when you start you generally don’t classify your friends like that. When the number of friends becomes too much to manage easily, you try to classify them. This would be irritating.

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Intrepid Ibex is Here!!

I can’t wait till the time is 12:00 to start the download of Ubuntu 8.10. Yes! That’s right, the next version of Ubuntu is here! (finally! ;-)). After the four alpha releases we can now try our hands on the final release on 30th October 2008. This is how Ubuntu’s is version numbered 8.10 means 10th month of year 2008. The looks are pretty cool with dark themes and most of the work has gone towards the internals of the OS. It seems that the booting time of the OS is like magic! Today after updating my machine with Intrepid Ibex, I will post a detailed first look of the OS. Till then, c ya!

Syncronizing your mobile with Ubuntu

Every time I ask my friends to change to an open sourced operating system like Ubuntu, one of the first reasons I get is Ubuntu doesn ‘t support PC Suite. How can I syncronize my mobile with this? Today I have an answer to all these questions. There is a software called Wammu which is the front-end for gammu engine. Gammu is an amazing package to connect your mobile by various methods like bluetooth, IR and data cable. It can syncronize your contacts, messages, calender and todo list and also lets you to edit, create new and delete entries. Gammu is very powerful but the problem with it is that it can be used only via the terminal. Here Wammu comes into play. Wammu is a front-end for Gammu written in python. Using this, you can transfer files also. It is very much similar to Nokia PC Suite but can support plenty of mobile phones. Being open sourced, it is available for all platforms. To visit the wammu site click here. Do comment about your experiences with Wammu.

Harish.R.

http://openview-harish.blogspot.com

Don’t design your character as a garden where everyone can walk
Design it as the sky where everyone will aspire to reach

Boot screens for Ubuntu

Every time you boot your machine, the logo of Ubuntu comes up with a loading bar. This is called the boot screen. This can be changed and also recreated (if you are ready to spend some time with it). 
1. To change the boot screen, you need a software called ‘StartUp-Manager‘. You can get it using Synaptic. 
2. Use GOOGLE and search for usplash themes. I would suggest you to visit http://www.gnome-art.org where you can get some really cool usplash themes. Once you have downloaded some themes. 
3. Extract them to a folder and you can see the files with extension .so
4. Copy all the files to /usr/lib/usplash.
5. Open up System -> Administration -> StartUp-Manager and select the Appearance tab.
6. Here you can choose your favourite splash screen using the drop down menu.

Enjoy!!!

Installing GOOGLE Apps and SKYPE

The common myth that GOOGLE Apps and Skype aren’t available for Linux is now broken! That’s right. You can install GOOGLE Apps and Skype right from your package manager after you add these two repositories. For addding a repository, goto System -> Administration -> Synaptic Package Manager -> Preferences -> Repositories and follow the instructions in the links given below

For the GOOGLE Apps use this link

http://www.google.com/linuxrepositories/ubuntu704.html

For Skype, use this

http://www.medibuntu.org

Medibuntu means Multimedia, Entertainment and Distractions in Ubuntu. It’s repositories has softwares which are not included in Ubuntu repos for many issues like copyright, security etc. Also these aren’t supported by Ubuntu community. So any bug found cannot be reported to them. However, I would recommend you to give it a shot 🙂

Desktop Managers. Window Managers. What are these?

Desktop Manager
These are responsible for presenting your Desktop to you. In simple terms, it does the function of explorer.exe in Windows. There are many types of desktop managers. Some popular ones are GNOME, KDE, CDE and XFCE. Each has its own advantages and disadvantages.

Window Manager
The window manager is responsible for the looks of your Desktop. It is like the theme manager in Windows. Every window manager has its own unique feature. Some like compiz and beryl are definite eye candies. They have several inbuilt features like animations etc.

Ubuntu uses GNOME Desktop Manager with Compiz Window Manager. However, these can be changed to our need.

To know more about any desktop manager or window manager do a simple GOOGLE search. I will post a list of the popular desktop and window managers along with the link in my next blogs. Till then, c ya!!!

Download Manager for Ubuntu!!!

I was often wondering whether we have download managers in Ubuntu like those in Windows. A download manger should be capable of resuming broken downloads, have retry facility, and try mirror downloads. Windows has many of these download managers. So I searched for similar ones in Ubuntu and found that a download manager is pre-installed in Ubuntu! It is wget. So I searched for a GUI version of it and got gwget. Now I need to integrate it with my firefox. What best addon I will I use other than FlashGot :-). So now I have installed gwget and flash got an my download managers are working like a charm. Here is how you can configure these in your UBox.

1. Get FlashGot form here
2. Open up terminal and type sudo apt-get install gwget
3. Once everything is installed open Firefox and try downloading something
4. Your download window should provide an option for downloading with gwget using Flashgot
5. In Gwget, many columns wont be displayed first, to activate them goto Preferences -> Columns and add whatever you want
6. Enjoy downloading! 🙂 

Harish.R.

http://openview-harish.blogspot.com

Don't design your character as a garden where everyone can walk
Design it as the sky where everyone will aspire to reach