Linked by Eugenia Loli on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 01:14 UTC
Ubuntu, Kubuntu, Xubuntu I upgraded my laptop to the latest Ubuntu Gutsy Gibbon a few days ago only to be greeted with an additional feel of polish and goodness. Read more for our mini preview.
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SEJeff
Member since:
2005-11-05

Nice work Eugenia. A fair and honest review of Gutsy. You might attribute a good chunk of the polish to cross distro coordination. Fedora and Ubuntu upstreams have been working together a whole lot. Here are a few examples:

When using fast-user-switch-applet and switching to a new user, the username is already selected and you just have to type your password. It was really lame to use the shiny mac os-like applet to select a new user only to be put at a normal login prompt. This was mostly fedora's work with consolekit and gdm.

Fedora's system-config-printer is the default printer configuration tool. The ubuntu team submitted enough bugfixing patches that one of the canonical guys has commit rights for s-c-m.

Ubuntu 7.10 aka Gutsy Gibbon will be a solid release.

Reply Score: 7

spikeb Member since:
2006-01-18

i would like to see fedora's system tools replace the current gnome tools, are there any plans for that?

Reply Score: 4

g2devi Member since:
2005-07-09

As a former Fedora user, it's blatantly obvious how much Ubuntu copied from Fedora's initial success and how much Fedora in turn copied from Ubuntu when Ubuntu got more successful. I've always felt that Ubuntu and Fedora were sister distros, so it's good to see that they're now collaborating to solve some common problems.

Reply Score: 6

bah
by spikeb on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 01:27 UTC
spikeb
Member since:
2006-01-18

stop wishing for a port of proprietary software and start wishing for application x to implement feature y

Reply Score: 14

RE: bah
by Eugenia on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 01:31 UTC in reply to "bah"
Eugenia Member since:
2005-06-28

This will take forever. It took Sony Vegas 5 years to become as polished as it is, and it has at least 20 (clueful) engineers working on it full time. It would take Kino and KDEnLive another 10 years to get where Vegas is today (and no, Cinelerra doesn't cut it either).

Sorry, but I can't wait that long. I need functionality, and I needed it yesterday.

If an OSS video editing app gets the kind of maturity and stability I am after, of course and I would use it over a proprietary one. But it has not been the case for years, and in fact this is not the first time I am whining about it. Linux and video editors are just not a good mix so far. That's just the truth.

Edited 2007-09-22 01:33

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: bah
by kaiwai on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 03:46 UTC in reply to "RE: bah"
kaiwai Member since:
2005-07-06

This will take forever. It took Sony Vegas 5 years to become as polished as it is, and it has at least 20 (clueful) engineers working on it full time. It would take Kino and KDEnLive another 10 years to get where Vegas is today (and no, Cinelerra doesn't cut it either).

Sorry, but I can't wait that long. I need functionality, and I needed it yesterday.

If an OSS video editing app gets the kind of maturity and stability I am after, of course and I would use it over a proprietary one. But it has not been the case for years, and in fact this is not the first time I am whining about it. Linux and video editors are just not a good mix so far. That's just the truth.


Unfortunately I don't see Sony doing it any time soon - these are the same people who have refused to disclose ATRAC specifications, refuse to disclose NetMD specifications, refuse to port any of their applications to *NIX (of any flavour). Sorry to say, but isn't going to happen - the best advice is to look at a Mac if you don't want to run Windows. Its the only viable alternative out there to Windows which currently has the largest array of proprietary applications.

I run OpenSolaris B73, and it is fabulous, but I realise that until some eccentric millionaire comes out of the middle of no where and invests a huge sum into a project or a company drops the 'quarter by quarter' CEO's in favour of long term investments; realising that the Windows market is going to be eventually dominated by Microsoft and their solutions - their only hope of survival is to look at making their applications available on alternative platforms.

Reply Score: 4

RE[3]: bah
by Eugenia on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 03:51 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: bah"
Eugenia Member since:
2005-06-28

I am actually well setup with Sony Vegas atm. I am happy with the app for the most part, it does everything I need, and then some more...

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: bah
by kaiwai on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 04:04 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: bah"
kaiwai Member since:
2005-07-06

I am actually well setup with Sony Vegas atm. I am happy with the app for the most part, it does everything I need, and then some more...


Who said you weren't happy? I said if you were unhappy with Windows, assuming Sony Vegas (or a feature equivalent) was available on MacOS X, then maybe that is the better platform to move to than Linux.

Reply Score: 5

RE[5]: bah
by Lobotomik on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 08:44 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: bah"
Lobotomik Member since:
2006-01-03

What makes OSX a lot better than Vista? It eats tons of resources, it is not that fast, it does not have the games, and it is controlled by a company that is as closed and as tight as Microsoft.

And it wants to herd you in their way of doing things, where everything works transparently as long as you do it EXACTLY their way, but dissidence is VERY frowned upon. iTV streams Apple-formatted video from iTMS through an Apple Airport. The Airport uses encryption to impede streaming music from anything but iTunes. The iPod can only be managed from iTunes. The iPhone won't let you install any third party software, or even let you listen to your own music as a ringtone without paying them $1 for the privilege. iWork uses their own, proprietary, undocumented file formats, and deliberately precludes using OpenDocument.

In the end, their hardware is cute, and their software is extremely good looking, but they are as tightly controlling as they can afford to be, even more so than Microsoft.

Reply Score: 13

RE[6]: bah
by Kroc on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 08:58 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: bah"
Kroc Member since:
2005-11-10

Try owning a Mac. Experience will show you that OS X is better than Vista. iWork is just XML. It's parsable, it's not encumbered with weird binary blobs and patents. It's proprietary in the same way a printed book is proprietary. You can read it, and you could write it back out easily enough, you just don't have access to the same printer they did. OOXML on the other hand would be like trying to reverse engineer a book of barcodes.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: bah
by dopp0 on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 16:46 UTC in reply to "RE: bah"
dopp0 Member since:
2007-08-29

Linux (as ubuntu) is no good for people like you.

Stick with windows and Sony and be happy! o_O

Reply Score: 0

RE[2]: bah
by itinerant on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 17:01 UTC in reply to "RE: bah"
itinerant Member since:
2005-07-06

I work a lot with video using resolutions above HD. FCP, Premiere start creaking at these resolutions, but I agree with you Vegas sits there looking slightly less pretty but doing the job. I've been searching for an open alternative for a few years - Kino, Kdenlive and Cinelerra just don't cut it. A lot of this video originates in 3D land, and I've been using Blender for about 10 years - more and more I've been turning to Blender first for video editing - I'm not saying it's as pretty as Vegas, but the flexibility keeps amazing me - I found out last week I can use footage captured from a Canon HV20 directly in Blender, either in the sequence editor or as a texture. Of course you need to have the right libraries, which is why I always end up back on Gentoo, I got tired of chasing media repositries in Fedora, Debian etc...

Reply Score: 2

RE: bah
by polaris20 on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 12:58 UTC in reply to "bah"
polaris20 Member since:
2005-07-06

typical response. Some of can't use Linux equivalents because well, they just can't touch the proprietary stuff. They simply don't. And it'll take them years to catch up, and by that time the proprietary apps will have moved on even further.

Stop wishing for the world to embrace in an open source hug and realize that there's a time and place for proprietary apps.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: bah
by lemur2 on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 13:28 UTC in reply to "RE: bah"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

Some of can't use Linux equivalents because well, they just can't touch the proprietary stuff.


There is no reason why "proprietary stuff" can't be made for Linux.

Quite a lot of proprietary software vendors are prepared to offer Linux versions of their wares.

There is nothing at all about either Linux or Windows that makes one or the other a better or worse platform on which to run either proprietary or open source applications.

Reply Score: 5

RE[3]: bah
by polaris20 on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 20:18 UTC in reply to "RE: bah"
polaris20 Member since:
2005-07-06

There is no reason why "proprietary stuff" can't be made for Linux.

Oh I know, and I agree. I'd love to see more companies port their stuff to Linux. I run VMWare Workstation at work, which of course I paid for.

I am surprised that more companies don't do that.

My comment was more directed at people thinking that some proprietary software can be replaced easily with open source software. Often that's just not feasible, sometimes it's impossible (within the near future).

Reply Score: 1

DejaVu fonts in Gutsy
by Simon on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 01:41 UTC
Simon
Member since:
2005-08-14

Ubuntu uses the DejaVu fonts; DejaVu are derived from Vera, with additional coverage for Greek and Cyrillic.
Vera is currently a somewhat stale project, while DejaVu is active and increases the coverage to many languages,
http://dejavu.sourceforge.net/wiki/index.php/Main_Page

Reply Score: 3

RE: DejaVu fonts in Gutsy
by Eugenia on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 01:45 UTC in reply to "DejaVu fonts in Gutsy"
Eugenia Member since:
2005-06-28

Yes, I know DejaVu. They are good too.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: DejaVu fonts in Gutsy
by Timmmm on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 01:59 UTC in reply to "RE: DejaVu fonts in Gutsy"
Timmmm Member since:
2006-07-25

He means DejaVu is an extension of Vera - i.e. they already use Vera. I agree that they need to lower the hinting - looks too blurry on my screen.

I also completely agree with you about video editing though.

Reply Score: 1

RE[3]: DejaVu fonts in Gutsy
by mjg59 on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 02:10 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: DejaVu fonts in Gutsy"
mjg59 Member since:
2005-10-17

Hinting will tend to reduce blurryness, though in the process the font shape will be somewhat distorted. The problem with reducing the default level of hinting is that Vera and derivatives end up with very bad colour fringing as a result (if you're using sub-pixel anti aliasing - if you're not, then that's obviously not a problem)

The current defaults are to use full hinting for best contrast and sub-pixel configuration, and medium hinting for best shapes. Arguing over which of these is the best default tends to result in religious warfare, but we've made a change to the font configuration that should improve font shaping for people using subpixel setups.

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: DejaVu fonts in Gutsy
by Joe User on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 11:03 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: DejaVu fonts in Gutsy"
Joe User Member since:
2005-06-29

I agree that they need to lower the hinting - looks too blurry on my screen.

Lower or increase? LOL

Reply Score: 1

video support
by John Blink on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 01:51 UTC
John Blink
Member since:
2005-10-11

I agree with you on this Eugenia.

The other thing I don't understand is why can't I see Xvids out of the box.

Has that been fixed with recent distro's.

I know with Fedora 7 that was not the case.

Reply Score: 1

RE: video support
by Simon80 on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 04:05 UTC in reply to "video support"
Simon80 Member since:
2007-09-22

XviDs don't work out of the box in Ubuntu, but it's certainly much easier to set up than windows. If you install the ubuntu-restricted-extras package, it will pull in Java, Flash, MS's core fonts for the web, and a bunch of codecs.

Eugenia: there are already alternate builds of ffmpeg, see http://medibuntu.org

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: video support
by Eugenia on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 04:07 UTC in reply to "RE: video support"
Eugenia Member since:
2005-06-28

Simon, thanks, but the ffmpeg builds they have there are too old.

Reply Score: 1

RE: video support
by ba1l on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 07:13 UTC in reply to "video support"
ba1l Member since:
2007-09-08

No other operating system supports Xvid "out of the box" either. Free Linux distributions can't, and commercial operating systems won't.

In all cases, the solution is the same - install the appropriate codec. If you don't happen to know what it's called, you're out of luck on any system - it took me hours to find an appropriate codec for Quicktime on a Mac, and I only found that because I looked for FFMpeg QuickTime components.

Last I tried, I think Ubuntu offers to install the codec for you anyway.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: video support
by wannabe geek on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 15:08 UTC in reply to "RE: video support"
wannabe geek Member since:
2006-09-27

1) What are you guys talking about? Xvid is GPL:

http://www.xvid.org/Downloads.15.0.html

You may mean divx:

http://www.divx.com/

Well PCLinuxOS (among others) supports divx out of the box. It supports every media format out of the box, except DVD and W32 codecs, but those are available in Synaptic, right in the main (unified) repository.

Reply Score: 4

RE[2]: video support
by k.g.stoyanov on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 16:10 UTC in reply to "RE: video support"
k.g.stoyanov Member since:
2005-07-12

PCLinuxOS does

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: video support
by KugelKurt on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 22:50 UTC in reply to "RE: video support"
KugelKurt Member since:
2005-07-06

MPEG licenses are free for non-commercial use and in most countries MPEG isn't even patented.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: video support
by s-peter on Mon 24th Sep 2007 10:48 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: video support"
s-peter Member since:
2006-01-29

MPEG licenses are free for non-commercial use

This is exactly why it isn't included in Ubuntu (and most other free OSes I guess)...

The license of software included in Ubuntu can not discriminate against anyone or any group of users and cannot restrict users from using the software for a particular field of endeavour - a business for example.

http://www.ubuntu.com/community/ubuntustory/licensing

Reply Score: 1

Human theme alternative
by sbergman27 on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 02:35 UTC
sbergman27
Member since:
2005-07-24

I'm not sure if this is your cup of tea, but you might want to try out the "Outdoors" theme, based on human. (It's a soothing, natural looking green.)

I much enjoy it with this wallpaper:

http://interfacelift.com/wallpaper/details.php?id=00441

I like the brown/orange bit, alright. But that *is* a dangerous color combination to expect to look good on a wide range of monitors. Outdoors is a welcome change from the ubiquitous "blue and grey" themes. And I find it very pleasant and usable. You might find my suggested wallpaper to be a bit "busy", though. ;-)

Reply Score: 3

RE: Human theme alternative
by baadger on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 15:11 UTC in reply to "Human theme alternative"
baadger Member since:
2006-08-29

Where can I find this "Outdoors" theme? It's not on Gnome Looks.org

EDIT: Oh nm, I found it on packages.ubuntu.com

Edited 2007-09-22 15:17

Reply Score: 1

video editor
by ideasman42 on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 02:47 UTC
ideasman42
Member since:
2007-07-20

Nice balanced review,

regarding video, MainActor recently discontinued their video editor for linux. And theres a move to get it opensourced (buy it from them maybe similar to how blender3d became oss)

article
http://www.madpenguin.org/cms/?m=show&id=8000

sign the partition
http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/mainactor/

Reply Score: 1

AAC and FFMPEG
by kaiwai on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 03:37 UTC
kaiwai
Member since:
2005-07-06

The last time I checked, FFMPEG doesn't actually have AAC inside it; it links against FAAC/FAAD. To have FAAC/FAAD support, you need to have both installed as FFMPEG is used to write mp4 tags onto files.

With that being said, however, FFMPEG corrupts the file when writing the tag to the file - a bug which is known and the Ubuntu developers refuse to fix up.

Reply Score: 1

RE: AAC and FFMPEG
by Eugenia on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 03:39 UTC in reply to "AAC and FFMPEG"
Eugenia Member since:
2005-06-28

You are mistaken. As I write in the bug report that I link and you obviously didn't bother to click, having FAAC/FAAD installed will NOT enable AAC support on FFMPEG. The app must be recompiled with --enable-fxxxx to enable support for it.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: AAC and FFMPEG
by kaiwai on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 03:57 UTC in reply to "RE: AAC and FFMPEG"
kaiwai Member since:
2005-07-06

You are mistaken. As I write in the bug report that I link and you obviously didn't bother to click, having FAAC/FAAD installed will NOT enable AAC support on FFMPEG. The app must be recompiled with --enable-fxxxx to enable support for it.


Nice to see you resort to abuse rather than polite debate - the issue at hand is AAC support within FFMPEG.

Also, if you don't like it, then don't run Ubuntu - there are many other distributions you can run, which address that issue. Simply abusing me for a small misunderstanding on my part is childish at best.

Reply Score: 6

RE[3]: AAC and FFMPEG
by Eugenia on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 04:05 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: AAC and FFMPEG"
Eugenia Member since:
2005-06-28

I didn't "abuse" you, get over yourself. I simply showed that you didn't research the matter very well. You rushed to support ubuntu a bit too early without having all the facts at hand.

Secondly, I am not going to go to another distro. I've tried most of them, and IMO, Ubuntu is the best. But as a reviewer, and a user, I have the right to not be 100% happy with it because things are still missing from it. This doesn't mean that ubuntu sucks. But simply it's not quite there yet for some users.

Reply Score: 3

v RE[4]: AAC and FFMPEG
by kaiwai on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 04:31 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: AAC and FFMPEG"
RE[5]: AAC and FFMPEG
by Eugenia on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 04:34 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: AAC and FFMPEG"
Eugenia Member since:
2005-06-28

Kaiwai, be VERY careful WHAT you write over here, because baseless accusations indeed CAN lead to banning.

I did not, I repeat, I did NOT, mod your posts -- at all. Not even a single one. In fact, I haven't moded any post on this thread. Someone else did, I don't know who.

If you don't believe me, write to Adam, our webmaster, and he will look at it in the DB to see who did what.

Reply Score: 1

RE[6]: AAC and FFMPEG
by sbergman27 on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 05:38 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: AAC and FFMPEG"
sbergman27 Member since:
2005-07-24

"""
Kaiwai, be VERY careful WHAT you write over here, because baseless accusations indeed CAN lead to banning.
"""

Hey guys... I like you both. Let's explore the future of computing and have a nice inter-OS Gestalt experience. :-)

We waste so much energy in senseless conflicts. And we can never *unsay* things that we have said.

I'm as guilty as anyone. But in the end, it's never worth it.

Reply Score: 9

RE[7]: AAC and FFMPEG
by kaiwai on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 09:37 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: AAC and FFMPEG"
kaiwai Member since:
2005-07-06

True; I have a habit of firing off comments without thinking through things.

*gives Eugenia a hug* sorry about being rude :-(

I just get pissed off when people deduct points (I don't know who did it (I'm sure you didn't do it Eugenia) - I just lashed out at the closet thing near by at the time) in clear violation of the policies put down - thats all. I don't deduct points personally because I'd sooner see stupid posts get shown up for what they are rather than pushed out of sight - but hey, thats just me.

Edited 2007-09-22 09:38

Reply Score: 2

RE[6]: AAC and FFMPEG
by Kokopelli on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 10:11 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: AAC and FFMPEG"
Kokopelli Member since:
2005-07-06

Kaiwai, be VERY careful WHAT you write over here, because baseless accusations indeed CAN lead to banning.


Eugenia, accusations like this are hardly rare around OSNews. Complaints about being modded down are par for the course, as is being modded down in a fashion not in line with the stated guidelines. Threatening to ban someone simply because it is you are part of the conversation is hardly reasonable. If you wish to wield the ban hammer, at least wield it with an even hand.


(Ironically since this post is off topic it would make sense to mod it down, but I felt it needed to be said.)

Reply Score: 4

RE[7]: AAC and FFMPEG
by sbergman27 on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 10:16 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: AAC and FFMPEG"
sbergman27 Member since:
2005-07-24

Kokopelli,

They got it resolved, nicely. And now we are all hoping and praying that Eugenia doesn't have to get a divorce on her anniversary. Don't blink, around here. :-)

Edited 2007-09-22 10:21

Reply Score: 1

v RE[5]: AAC and FFMPEG
by Joe User on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 11:08 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: AAC and FFMPEG"
RE[6]: AAC and FFMPEG
by BluenoseJake on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 21:49 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: AAC and FFMPEG"
BluenoseJake Member since:
2005-08-11

Alot of us are like that on OSNews, myself included.

You also share the same characteristics, and I can't believe you'd have the gall to butt in to an argument that was ended amicably by both parties.

I have seen you get very rude yourself, not sure why you feel the need the be a hypocrite, but I guess that's your right.

Reply Score: 1

RE[5]: AAC and FFMPEG
by Adam S on Mon 24th Sep 2007 00:16 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: AAC and FFMPEG"
Adam S Member since:
2005-04-01

You received four up-votes and NINE down mods from your peers. None from Eugenia or the OSNews staff.

Reply Score: 1

theme
by netpython on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 06:56 UTC
netpython
Member since:
2005-07-06

Eugenia, you might like the mac4lin project.

http://sourceforge.net/projects/mac4lin

Reply Score: 2

v Why GNOME in Ubuntu
by Coral Snake on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 07:02 UTC
RE: Why GNOME in Ubuntu
by Almindor on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 08:01 UTC in reply to "Why GNOME in Ubuntu"
Almindor Member since:
2006-01-16

They're not taking a Stallmanesque attitude. They do what they must to be free of fear of litigation. They cannot include certain libraries as it would break the license and or software patents. (although perhaps a Ubuntu-europe is in order?)

So weigh properly. I cannot copy windows software and distribute it either. Don't criticize me for that.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Why GNOME in Ubuntu
by Lennie on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 08:48 UTC in reply to "RE: Why GNOME in Ubuntu"
Lennie Member since:
2007-09-22

Trust me, I have never and will never criticize anyone for not distributing windows.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Why GNOME in Ubuntu
by Almindor on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 10:17 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Why GNOME in Ubuntu"
Almindor Member since:
2006-01-16

You evidently didn't get me. What I was trying to push into your head is that they CAN NOT distribute certain libraries and programs in certain states/countries. And as such it's not their fault that you cannot play certain formats on the distro out of the box. If you have a problem with that you can:
1. Dish cash and play in Windows or Mac.
2. Be smart and install the codecs not giving f* about what the REAL THIEFS (eg: the greedy bastards) lose.
3. Complain to the makers of those codecs for being greedy.

Edited 2007-09-22 10:18

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Why GNOME in Ubuntu
by sbergman27 on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 09:41 UTC in reply to "RE: Why GNOME in Ubuntu"
sbergman27 Member since:
2005-07-24

I strongly agree that their attitude is not Stallmanesque. They do have a faith in the power of the FOSS model... but also understand that if the user cannot do what he needs with an OS, he does not remain a user of that OS for long. And that is a lost opportunity, quickly adding up to many, many lost opportunities. Tuning the exact "when and where" of compromise is an art, not a science. But proper tuning can yield impressive results... as Ubuntu has demonstrated.

Reply Score: 3

v Unprofessional, Amateur UI
by spackie on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 09:07 UTC
well done
by liamdawe on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 10:09 UTC
liamdawe
Member since:
2006-07-04

A nice unbiased article, i have yet to try gutsy and i will probably wait a little while into its actual release till i get it. But it sure is shaping up by the looks of it!

Reply Score: 1

video editing
by ple_mono on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 10:26 UTC
ple_mono
Member since:
2005-07-26

even though i suspect that sony will never port "vegas" to linux, or any other OS for that matter, I will say that it probably is the best video editing app there is out there... hands down.
It would be wise for any open source video editing application to emulate vegas in it's functionality and behaviour.

Reply Score: 2

Wow...
by mwtomlinson on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 10:40 UTC
mwtomlinson
Member since:
2005-11-06

Eugenia - I guess this means you like it <g>...I upgraded my Dell E1505n laptop to Gutsy and, other than the to-be-expected pre-release hiccups, I agree - it's looking good.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Wow...
by HangLoose on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 14:12 UTC in reply to "Wow..."
HangLoose Member since:
2007-09-03

could you specify the hiccups ?

Reply Score: 1

Linux Distributors Just Don't Get It
by segedunum on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 12:13 UTC
segedunum
Member since:
2005-07-06

I read the bit about ffmpeg and smiled. Distributors just don't get it, and seem to take some high and mighty approach to policing peoples' abilites to use certain codecs that the MPAA, Sony and Fraunhofer would be proud of.

It takes nothing to compile ffmpeg with the right support, and then let people use the libraries. Heck, they could just include them and let people use their own files and formats. Linux distributors are creating more FUD here than is necessary or warranted.

Reply Score: 3

lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

It takes nothing to compile ffmpeg with the right support, and then let people use the libraries. Heck, they could just include them and let people use their own files and formats.


... or you could just simply add the medibuntu repository, and get your ffmpeg for Ubuntu from there.

http://medibuntu.sos-sts.com/

http://medibuntu.sos-sts.com/packages.php

http://medibuntu.sos-sts.com/repository.php

Edited 2007-09-22 13:23

Reply Score: 7

segedunum Member since:
2005-07-06

... or you could just simply add the medibuntu repository, and get your ffmpeg for Ubuntu from there.

And that's an absolutely classic example of why people don't get it. No one should need to add any repository. We have a real wealth of tools in the open source world for dealing with a wide variety of formats, and those tools are produced in good faith and should be available to everyone.

Eugenia's point is that when she sits down to her Dell computer pre-installed with Ubuntu, when she clicks on an MP3 file or when she wants to deal with AAC files, the power that she knows to be available in the open source world from software like ffmpeg should be available to her. If not, then it's an absolute waste of time Ubuntu being pre-installed on any machines, because it gives people a totally false and negative impression of open source software.

I don't know where people get that various packages are 'legally suspicious' without any evidence, past history or a firm legal basis and precedent. It's just FUD for the sake of it that prevents people from using the formats they want in good faith.

Edited 2007-09-22 17:07

Reply Score: 6

DoctorPepper Member since:
2005-07-12

It isn't a "high and mighty" approach. It is the prudent legal approach. In some areas, those codecs are patented, and if the Ubuntu team used them without licensing them, it would leave them open to law suits. True, they could license them, but then they would have to charge for their distribution, which would go counter to their goal of maintaining a free distro.

To play "devil's advocate" to your statement, it doesn't take you much to add the codecs you want using one of the many available methods, including building your own applications.

Kindly don't make the Linux distributors out as the bad guys, they're not. They are simply playing within the limits of the legal systems in the area they distribute their wares.

Reply Score: 2

segedunum Member since:
2005-07-06

It isn't a "high and mighty" approach. It is the prudent legal approach.

Do you have a legal basis and a precedent for all of this, otherwise it's just spreading FUD for the sake of it and preventing people from accessing the formats they want and need in good faith?

In some areas, those codecs are patented, and if the Ubuntu team used them without licensing them, it would leave them open to law suits.

Do you have any evidence for this in this case, and do you have an itemised list of patents to see if they're valid?

I'm sorry, but the open source world has given us excellent access to many formats through packages like ffmpeg. Under the table payments for things that are supposedly patented (and it's then a stretch to claiming that it's illegal to give support for them) have no place in the open source world, and they need to be faced. If they can't then Canonical should simply stop getting Dell to pre-install Ubuntu. It's that simple.

To play "devil's advocate" to your statement, it doesn't take you much to add the codecs you want using one of the many available methods, including building your own applications.

Pre-installing Ubuntu on to Dell machines gives people a window into the open source world, and having dialogues popping up telling you that you can't play something for unspecified legal reasons just doesn't cut it. Once you get to pre-installing something for people, it's a different world.

Kindly don't make the Linux distributors out as the bad guys, they're not.

I'm afraid they are. They're simply restricting good open source software on the basis of the never, never.

They are simply playing within the limits of the legal systems in the area they distribute their wares.

In a lot of cases they have no legal basis or precedent for claiming that supporting certain formats are illegal. They're basically just doing other peoples' jobs for them and spreading their own FUD.

Reply Score: 4

grat Member since:
2006-02-02

I'll agree that Xvid support should be available in any distro-- As far as I know, xvid is a reverse engineered, GPL licensed codec.

What about mp3? Can you point me to a free MP3 decoder that isn't covered by US patents?

The ffmpeg page basically says "Eh, we don't believe in patents, so we don't care". They talk about the use of ffmpeg in commercial products-- but only in the context of the GPL.

So, in short, their licensing faq is useless.

I agree that codec support on linux/bsd distros needs to be better, and it needs to be out of the box on a "commercial" release. Pretending there aren't any valid legal issues around distributing those codecs isn't the way to do it, though.

Reply Score: 1

segedunum Member since:
2005-07-06

What about mp3? Can you point me to a free MP3 decoder that isn't covered by US patents?

Is it covered by a US patent though, or is everybody just running around scared as to what may happen? I've read the supposed MP3 patent, and nowhere in it does it define MP3 as a format anywhere. We have code written in the open source world to read MP3 files, and I see nothing wrong with that. They're even throwing this patent around in Europe, and people are taking it. Roll on around 2011.

It also seems that Lame, being the best free MP3 encoder in the business, is certainly tolerated and hasn't had any action taken against it, and neither have free decoders for playback. Certainly in the case of free distributions that people just take and install themselves, I just don't see the issue at all - unless some distributors are trying to create a market for their enterprise distributions! ;-)

In the open source world, distributions need to stand up for code written inside various open source projects purely in good faith to access various formats people have. Once you give ground on this, the sky is the limit as to what formats can be patented and the scaremongering as to what should be taken out of a distribution. Without that stand, Linux as a desktop can never been taken seriously if all its power is taken out by the time a user sees it.

Pretending there aren't any valid legal issues around distributing those codecs isn't the way to do it, though.

That needs to be proved so we all know where we stand, and throwing the word illegal around helps absolutely no one. It's a difficult path, but one that needs taking. It's an area where pushing your luck pays.

Edited 2007-09-22 18:54

Reply Score: 3

thabrain Member since:
2005-06-29

[q]It isn't a "high and mighty" approach. It is the prudent legal approach.

Do you have a legal basis and a precedent for all of this, otherwise it's just spreading FUD for the sake of it and preventing people from accessing the formats they want and need in good faith?

Yes. It's called US Patent Law.

MP3 has the following claming some type of patent which was issued by the US Patent Office:
Thomson, Fraunhofer IIS, Sisvel (and its U.S. subsidiary Audio MPEG), Texas MP3 Technologies, and Alcatel-Lucent


In some areas, those codecs are patented, and if the Ubuntu team used them without licensing them, it would leave them open to law suits.

Do you have any evidence for this in this case, and do you have an itemised list of patents to see if they're valid?

If that's what you require, then you can certainly contact the aforementioned companies to get their Patent information, or contact the Patent office.

I'm sorry, but the open source world has given us excellent access to many formats through packages like ffmpeg. Under the table payments for things that are supposedly patented (and it's then a stretch to claiming that it's illegal to give support for them) have no place in the open source world, and they need to be faced. If they can't then Canonical should simply stop getting Dell to pre-install Ubuntu. It's that simple
I agree that if Dell is carrying Ubuntu on a commercial device that Dell should look into securing licensing.

Ubuntu licensing the codec goes against the open source structure of the Operating System.

To play "devil's advocate" to your statement, it doesn't take you much to add the codecs you want using one of the many available methods, including building your own applications.

Pre-installing Ubuntu on to Dell machines gives people a window into the open source world, and having dialogues popping up telling you that you can't play something for unspecified legal reasons just doesn't cut it.

Demand for the product prompted Dell to sell Ubuntu.
Until they resolve the licensing issues, this solution allows people to use the product.

Microsoft didn't always have support for MP3 and other codecs; it required intervention by a 3rd party to install them.

Once you get to pre-installing something for people, it's a different world.

Kindly don't make the Linux distributors out as the bad guys, they're not.

I'm afraid they are. They're simply restricting good open source software on the basis of the never, never.

This isn't helpful. This kind of thinking impedes progress, not spur it.


They are simply playing within the limits of the legal systems in the area they distribute their wares.

In a lot of cases they have no legal basis or precedent for claiming that supporting certain formats are illegal.


US Patent Law is a legal basis.

No I am not a lawyer, but I don't have to be to understand what a patent is or how it works.

Most of what you said was laced with belligerence, which is counter-productive, and unhelpful.

Reply Score: 2

KugelKurt Member since:
2005-07-06

1.) US patent laws are US patent laws and not world-wide patent laws.

2.) Ubuntu has no problem using patented code in their FreeType version. See http://www.osnews.com/story.php/18166/Interview-with-David-Turner-o...

3.) MPEG patents are free for non-commercial use.
See http://mp3licensing.com/help/

Reply Score: 5

Oh God...
by Gregory Isaacs on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 17:47 UTC
Gregory Isaacs
Member since:
2006-06-30

... I hope the Ubuntu team runs out of those silly names they give every release.

Reply Score: 2

matthekc
Member since:
2006-10-28

but have seen jahshaka. It still needs more development but I have heard good things.
http://www.jahshaka.org/

Reply Score: 2

Celluloid
by antitab on Sat 22nd Sep 2007 22:37 UTC
antitab
Member since:
2006-02-11

Eugenia: If you're looking for solid video editing on Linux, you might want to keep an eye on the Celluloid project:
http://celluloid.sourceforge.net
Unfortunately the site is undergoing a huge overhaul, but you can see a slightly dated rough-draft of the new main page here:
http://celluloid.sourceforge.net/New/About.html
Just don't share that link with anyone ;)
It's currently the most vaporous of the vaporware, but we're working on it :p

Reply Score: 3

MP3 license not free for non-commercial use
by pxa270 on Sun 23rd Sep 2007 00:39 UTC
pxa270
Member since:
2006-01-08

Where did you get the idea that distributing mp3 codecs is license free for non-commercial use? The mp3licensing FAQ only states that distributing mp3 encoded content non-commercially doesn't require a license.

Edited 2007-09-23 00:40

Reply Score: 2

anda_skoa Member since:
2005-07-07

Where did you get the idea that distributing mp3 codecs is license free for non-commercial use?


It might be the case in the country he is from and has extrapolated this.

For example it is definitely true for Austria, i.e. all patents are freely available for non-commercial use.

This is one of the interesting things one could learn during the EU software patents discussion. At some point a patent office official clarified that on national broadcasting.

Reply Score: 2

ffmpeg
by Barnabyh on Sun 23rd Sep 2007 12:44 UTC
Barnabyh
Member since:
2006-02-06

It might have been said before (although if I haven't seen the comment), but

-you can compile ffmpeg for yourself (as anyone who's ever used Slackware should be familiar with)

-maybe better, use codecs from the (3rd party)Debian multimedia repository http://www.debian-multimedia.org/ . Codecs from Testing worked fine for me in Breezy 5.10 before I made the switch to Testing completely. Just add the repository and import the key, it's all explained on the site.
If you want a really up to date package there might be one in the Unstable Sid repository, and the source code is also available there. (EDIT: Added the bit about Unstable.)

Edited 2007-09-23 12:54

Reply Score: 2

linux distributors
by Barnabyh on Sun 23rd Sep 2007 13:12 UTC
Barnabyh
Member since:
2006-02-06

It would be nice if people stopped pretending how user friendly and everything set up right out of the box proprietary OS's are and how linux wouldn't be there yet.

In the case of Windows in the past codec packages were added by OEM's, they do not all ship as part of the OS. You'll find out when you have to reinstall, suddenly there are plenty of codecs missing and you will find yourself on google quite a bit or your WMP getting busy until they are all re-installed. Then it also needs Quicktime, Real, etc.
I remember hunting down an Xvid codec package several years ago in Win2K because WMP did NOT find it on their servers. These things happen.

In regards to my ffmpeg comment above, I can see someone posting 'but Eugenia should not have to recompile, it should be easier' etc. If this is the only nagging problem she has with a distribution she otherwise seems very happy with, I would say that's a small thing to do and a small price to pay. It takes a lot more to get Windows right. The Linux desktop has arrived.

Reply Score: 2

RE: linux distributors
by lemur2 on Sun 23rd Sep 2007 13:28 UTC in reply to "linux distributors"
lemur2 Member since:
2007-02-17

In regards to my ffmpeg comment above, I can see someone posting 'but Eugenia should not have to recompile,


Eugenia (or anyone else for that matter) doesn't have to recompile, others have already done it for us.

it should be easier' etc


What could be easier than copy & paste two (2) lines of text into a terminal window?

http://medibuntu.sos-sts.com/repository.php

... followed by typing "apt-get install ffmpeg libdvdcss amarok-xine kaffeine k3b"

Or, instead of typing the apt-get command with the package names listed on Medibuntu, you could instead just run Synaptic and use that program's GUI to search for and install all packages with "medibuntu" in the package name.

On a PCLinuxOS system you do not even have to add repositories, to get to the same point requires only that you run Synaptic, search for and install "libdvdcss" and you are done. If you try to play a DVD without having installed libdvdcss, the PCLinuxOS system will even tell you exactly what is missing.

All of this (on either Ubuntu or PCLinuxOS) is far, far easier than the steps required to get a full set of multimedia codecs and a functional DVD player installed on a bare Windows system.

Edited 2007-09-23 13:38

Reply Score: 4