I recently posted that I wanted a new PC. Well, I want a desktop anyway. My Apple laptop is still in excellent shape, especially since I dropped 4G of RAM in it. Anyway, I have built a computer for myself on Newegg and saved it as a public wish list. Something to consider before viewing. I will be reusing my current hard drive along with my current CD/DVD burner. Outside of that I think I’ve got everything there I need.
NewEgg Wish List
(If that stupid link doesn’t work blame newegg)
Enjoy the Penguins!
I work for a fairly large company. More than 10,000 employees. And we use a lot of closed source software and I always ask them why don’t we use open source tools. They have every benefit and no downside that I can see. And, being in IT, I get a lot of chances to ask people who have clout in what we do actually use and buy. The amazing part is though that everyone ask always says, “I don’t know, I’d like to use [insert open source project here] as well.”
Well, I figured it out. It’s the users. People who don’t actually work on the computer are scared to death of open source. For the same stupid reasons Linux is not a popular desktop, open source tools have tough times in business.
Let me clarify something real fast though. I’m not talking about severs. It’s pretty hard these days to have UNIX servers without some open source code thrown in. And it’s hard not to find a major company without at least one UNIX server. We are moving to Linux for a lot of boxes though, that will be nice (don’t know what distro don’t ask). What kind of tools I am talking about though are things like Tora. An open source replacement for Toad. Or even MySQL. Have you ever looked at how much Oracle costs? If you haven’t you don’t want to know. And then are always the end user programs as well. For example I’m forced to use a horrible properitary tool to move code changes into testing with (I’m not allowed to put changes into production). I can’t tell you how many times I’ve asked, “Why not just SVN or Git.” The only decent answer I’ve ever got from that question was, “Because of Sarbanes and Oxley.” If you’re not familiar or not from America, that was the act put in place after Enron collapsed. Well, that excuse is swell to you realize it’s not a valid reason at all. What they’re looking for a paper trail. They want to be able to see who did what. What do they think logs are for? Seriously.
So, what about non-IT users. Well, they have no idea what they’re talking about 99% of the time as far as these things go. But they all still have a “If I don’t buy it from a massive company it must be virus infected and horrible” attitude. Which I guess I can understand. After all nothing in life is free. And I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard, “if it really is free odds are you don’t want it anyway.” What they don’t know though is that when it comes to software all of that is completely wrong!
So yeah. We use crappy programs at work because money = good software. If your a “end user” and you’re reading this, I’m here to tell you, you are wrong. The closed source proprietary programs we use at work are some of the worst designed pieces of software I’ve ever seen.
Enjoy the Penguins!
and then feel like a complete idiot after you post it? I hate it when that happens.
You’re writing some software and you’re using an API so your new program can interact with the old one. You go to compile your new changes and you get a syntax error. But wait, the compiler is claiming the syntax error isn’t coming from your code. It’s coming from the header file in the old program!
Totally just happened to me. What on earth do you do about that? File a bug report and hope they fix it?
Working for the fairly large company I do work for I sometimes get the opportunity to take part in some nice give always every now and then. Granted 90% of the time it’s 99% cables, mostly of the serial variety and at that they are almost always male-to-male or female-to-female.
Yesterday, though, I came across something I thought was rather interesting if nothing else. At first when I picked it up it was just like any other old give away keyboard. It was fairly large, pretty heavy, and said SUN across the top. While I have no problem with SUN, it came as no surprise to me the only thing in the office with it’s name of it looked as if it came out of 1996 when they were still in their heyday. Much to my surprise though it said something interesting across the top I never expected, “UNIX Keyboard.”
Well, after getting home with it and spending more time with it I realized a lot of other things about it. Like some of the keys are in the wrong place. I suppose that depends on who you ask though, either way after typing on a Windows and windows like keyboard (my Mac) it’s very difficult to suddenly have some of your keys switch places. Like the cntl key. Though I do find it convenient where its at on this UNIX keyboard.
Overall this keyboard is okay. I wouldn’t dare go as far as to say it’s worth the $150 Sun charges for it on their website. It’s okay to type on. It’s pretty quite, something I did not expect, but the keys also feel really stiff to me. Like I have to try to hard to push them down. From what I can find scattered across the web the Type 5 was the best they made, and most seem to refer to my find, the Type 7, as “Okay.” I’m afraid I’d have to agree.
Enjoy the Penguins!
I want a new computer to run Linux on. I only have a few requirements, and at that I don’t think they are necessarily that hard to fulfill, it’s just a matter of doing it.
- It must be MicroATX
- At least 4G of RAM. Obviously the more the merrier.
- The CPU must be Intel
- It must also have at least two cores
- I prefer it as close to silent as possible. The fewer fans the better.
- I would prefer the graphics be by Intel or ATI.
- It must all be supported by Linux.
- Finally, I’d like it cost no more than ~$600 (US dollars).
I use my Mac laptop a lot. Especially as my desktop with Linux on it ages and slows my Mac has really stepped up as my computer of choice while at home. But that doesn’t change my attitude toward software. Depsite being closed in a lot of repects the kernel is still open source and the system is fully UNIX compatible. So it’s like the best of both worlds in a way.
In my quest to make Mac as friendly to me as possible though I’ve noticed some things seem to be missing. An open source version of the program TOAD for Oracle just doesn’t exist on the Mac. I don’t use Oracle at home, mainly MySQL, but the program doesn’t exist regardless of what database you use. While I generally do a lot of work in Vim (at work or at home) I also find that writing SQL using SQL’s sad version of code completetion is quite helpful. Also what Toad calls the “Scheme Browser” would be something great to have as well. Now, there is a program called Tora. But, it’s only for Oracle databases, and is primarly designed, as far as I can tell, as a Windows program. It does compile and run fine on Linux I suppose but there is not currently a supported version of it for Mac. Not to mention it’s Oracle only.
Now I’m not an idiot. I realize as a Mac user who prefers open source software I’m in an extreme minority. As if finding good software for the Mac isn’t hard enough, finding the open source version only lowers your choices that much more.
Enjoy the Penguins!