Linked by Kroc Camen on Sun 3rd Jan 2010 22:34 UTC
Podcasts The problem with the future is that by the time you get there, everything is pretty normal. Now that we've arrived in 2010 (something I could hardly imagine 10 years ago), we're now met with the annual tradition of predicting what will happen this year. Now that Kroc, Thom and Tess have recovered enough from the new year we discuss KDE 4, desktop OSes vs. the web and the issues of privacy and government involvement in the Internet--that is, when we managed to stay on topic. More coffee!
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MP3
by smashIt on Sun 3rd Jan 2010 23:09 UTC
smashIt
Member since:
2005-07-06

you forgot the link to the mp3-file

http://osnews.com/audio/osnews-episode30.mp3

Reply Score: 4

RE: MP3
by Kroc on Sun 3rd Jan 2010 23:23 UTC in reply to "MP3"
Kroc Member since:
2005-11-10

Darnnit, I always forget one thing; there's far too many steps to publishing the podcasts. Thanks very much for the heads up, I've added the link in now.

Reply Score: 1

mtzmtulivu
Member since:
2006-11-14

.rpm package is more or less the same as a .deb package. The problem is not with the package itself, but a package manager and how careful packagers pay attention to dependencies.

i am using PClinuxOS and it uses rpm packages but they are managed by apt on the command line and synaptic on the GUI. Dependencies are tracked just as they are on any .deb based distro that uses apt and synaptic

To automatically being turned off my an rpm disto simply because it uses rpm packages doesnt seem to be very fair to any rpm based distro. Most of people who have bad memories about rpm seem to based their experience from decades ago

Reply Score: 2

FriendlySport Member since:
2010-01-04

The RPM equivalent of APT is YUM. It's a pretty central piece of Fedora. I think the person complaining about RPMs in the podcast (I wish I knew their names!) said they used Fedora 11 and then complained about not having an APT equivalent. How'd you miss it? Fedora's default YUM repos are very extensive and, like APT, can be customized.

I prefer Debian-based systems for other reasons, but I think the differences between .deb and .rpm is pretty irrelevant to the end-user.

Reply Score: 2

WereCatf Member since:
2006-02-15

To automatically being turned off my an rpm disto simply because it uses rpm packages doesnt seem to be very fair to any rpm based distro. Most of people who have bad memories about rpm seem to based their experience from decades ago

I definitely agree with this one. I used to use SuSE in the 90s through to 2001, but I always had one or another issue with RPMs back then. I switched to Gentoo, used that for years, then I last year tried out Mandriva. I didn't know it was RPM-based before I installed it, but after having used it for more than a year I gotta say that I've had a grand total of zero problems regarding RPMs.

Reply Score: 2

My opinion of privacy
by FriendlySport on Mon 4th Jan 2010 00:36 UTC
FriendlySport
Member since:
2010-01-04

I don't care if my information is stored and I don't care if some stranger (government or commercial) has access to it, so long as I'm made aware of that. My privacy is only important when I want to keep something from people I know or may know one day like a future employer.

I don't care whether or not Google stores my searching or browsing information. No one's going to attach that to my real life identity unless there's a criminal investigation.

In the US, there's a lot of talk about full-body scanners in airports. The main concern is that somebody will be seeing your semi-naked body. Why do I care if a stranger in airport security sees my naked body? That's the only interaction with that person I'll ever have. It's not like we'll meet later and he'll say "hey, I know what you look like under there". I don't even care if he's a pervert and gets a kick out of it. When social circles are completely separate, I don't think privacy really matters.

Reply Score: 4

Brandorientated
by Lennie on Mon 4th Jan 2010 00:47 UTC
Lennie
Member since:
2007-09-22

Yes, the dutch aren't very brandorientated, all do the exception is probably: Luxaflex

Reply Score: 3

1cm of snow ??? bah
by gelendir on Mon 4th Jan 2010 02:50 UTC
gelendir
Member since:
2009-01-08

Here in québec, canada, 3 days before christmas we received 10 cm of snow and the day after we got 20, and that's considered normal during winter. (2 years ago we got over 500 cm during all winter, a record !)

Reply Score: 3

Brand recognition
by judgen on Mon 4th Jan 2010 07:14 UTC
judgen
Member since:
2006-07-12

I don't think the swedes are very brand centric either. iphones and ipods are as Thom stated called mp3 player and mobile as the i in the "i" pronounced in swedish it makes the sound like the english ee (as in EEK!). And that sounds rather silly. But there are always exceptions, like the words thermos (the heat preserving canisters) and frizbee (plastic discs) wich are all brands of products.

Reply Score: 2

Super LCD replacement
by transputer_guy on Mon 4th Jan 2010 07:58 UTC
transputer_guy
Member since:
2005-07-08

I wasn't that interested in the podcast but since you talk of predictions for the year here is one on the hardware front for anyone buying LCD gear this year.

Last Feb Samsung signed an agreement with Unipixel of Texas to bring to market a modified LCD monitor technology that claims to use about 10-20x less light power using a new pixel wise optical light shutter MEMs device.

In case you didn't know a typical regular 24" LCD panel uses about 80W mostly to drive a cold cathode tube or half that if LED based. The standard LCD cell always blocks light through each pixel triad between 90-100% for each RGB gray level. LCD monitors and TVs get quite toasty and some pixels may even be faulty.

In the Unipixel TMOS cell, the MEMs shutter is a simple near perfect on off switch driven fully on or off by pulse width modulation much like the DLP does. In effect it is 10-20x brighter so can use a smaller light source which will be LED. Such monitors will now be power sipping and cool and really thin.

There are other goodies, it removes most of the complex LCD cost structure since it is a dramatically simpler process. It only uses a single switch per pixel, switching the R,G,B picture frame values in turn at the LED source at very high frame rates. It also gives defect free pixels, since only one FET per pixel and at possibly higher resolutions. It also scales from tiny to huge screens and should cost much less to make. It really only has a few components, a MEMs device opcuity film that looks like a micro scale bubble wrap, the plastic/glass light substrate and the LED lights. It still needs FETs on the screen to switch each capacitor plus the interconnects.

I post this as an x chip engineer since I haven't seen anything as elegant in technology for a decade or two. the unipixel site has the tech info.

Anyway its supposed to be out this year, so please Samsung deliver me.

Reply Score: 3

twentyten
Member since:
2010-01-04

It's disappointing to see that OSNews, as a site that purports to be supportive of alternative operating systems, is still only supplying its podcast in a patent-encumbered audio format.

Too bad there aren't open alternatives availa.. oh drat, that's right there are Ogg Speex, Ogg Vorbis and FLAC, off the top of my head. Hell, even an uncompressed wav would be nice.

OSNews, please consider making 2010 a year of open standards. If you want to offer proprietary garbage along side the open standards fine. But why can't visitors at least have the option to obtain content that isn't in legal murky water.

Reply Score: 3

Beachchairs Member since:
2009-04-10

This man needs to be listened to. Even if the ogg is only available on this site.

Reply Score: 1

helf Member since:
2005-07-06

Why? It's an extra encoding step for a few people that care. I don't have any problem with it, but I don't see the admins needing to take the time to do it.

Reply Score: 3

Zifre Member since:
2009-10-04

Why? It's an extra encoding step for a few people that care. I don't have any problem with it, but I don't see the admins needing to take the time to do it.

It takes just a few minutes at most. I'm sure it takes many, many hours to produce the podcasts, so the time is insignificant. A lot of people do care about it. I certainly would greatly appreciate it.

Reply Score: 1

Kroc Member since:
2005-11-10

Nothing puts me off providing OGG more than comments like yours.

No, you did not need to layer on the smarm that thick. I’ll consider it for the new site where I’ll have HTML5 Audio to potentially play with. Right now, there is no use case for all the extra work involved. Show me an operating system that we report on that can’t play MP3 without at most a free third-party download and then I’ll reconsider your comment.

Reply Score: 1

twentyten Member since:
2010-01-04

Kroc,

The tone of my suggestion was meant to be playful and I do apologize if it came off otherwise. That said, there would be hardly any extra work if OSNews provided audio in an open format instead of a proprietary format. It's only additional work if more than one format is provided (which may or may not be worthwhile, that is up to OSNews to decide).

I appreciate that you are considering implementing the audio tag of HTML 5 in the future but I still find it befuddling that as a proponent of Video For Everybody (which I do think is a great idea), you feel that there is no need to embrace open standards right now when they exist.

I have not heard the podcast but some of the comments have suggested that you have had trouble installing Flash in a Linux distribution. Have you considered why Flash is not installed by default? I would hope so since your experience has been a direct result of the decision not to have it installed by default. Likewise, MP3 support is not provided out-of-the-box by most Linux distributions due to legal reasons, not because the code isn't available. Yes, those legal reasons do not affect everyone in every country but they do still exist and are relevant to a number of people worldwide.

But it isn't just about making it easy for current users to obtain digital content. It's about nourishing the future hardware and software ecosystems. Fortunately today, there are hundreds of portable media players that support open formats such as Ogg Vorbis and FLAC. As a content provider, I would hope that OSNews would like to encourage these hardware manufacturers that there is a reason to continue to do this.

It's also about ensuring access to digital content in the future. Yes, the MP3 patent holders haven't been overtly zealous in protecting their IP, but that doesn't mean it will always be the case. There is no way of knowing if at some point in the future they will decide to be more aggressive in seeking financial compensation for those who seek to use their technology (e.g. OSNews readers who would like to listen to a podcast). MP3 is the example that I'm using in this case but my arguments apply to all proprietary file formats. Even if one is a user who doesn't mind using proprietary applications or a proprietary operating system, there are still many benefits to keeping data in open and patent-free formats.

The bottom line is this: When data is stored in a proprietary format it is controlled by those who own the rights to that format--NOT by those who created the content NOR by those who wish to access the content.

Reply Score: 2

Kroc Member since:
2005-11-10

It’s not that I don’t appreciate the significance of OGG (VfE) it’s that the staff here are all volunteers, our time is limited and the beckend is simply not geared up to providing alternative OGG encodes at the moment. I don’t want to be doubling formats until I can lessen the load we already have, and can (with the new site) explore new areas that would require OGG for HTML5 Audio (like so http://vocamus.net/dave/?p=955 ). In other words, if you’re going to do something—do it properly.

Reply Score: 1

Zifre Member since:
2009-10-04

Show me an operating system that we report on that can’t play MP3 without at most a free third-party download and then I’ll reconsider your comment.

All free (as in beer) Linux distros lack the ability to legally play MP3s in the US. I realize that it is usually quite easy to get the codecs anyways, and a lot of people do it, but there are people who take the law very seriously, and don't install them.

I'm quite sure that it would would not be terribly hard for OSNews to provide podcasts with Ogg (correct me if I'm wrong), and it would please a lot of people (and you don't even have to hassle with the audio tag, just provide a download). I, for one, would greatly appreciate it, and I would be much more likely to listen to the OSNews podcasts (which I rarely do).

Reply Score: 2

Kubrutu!
by fury on Mon 4th Jan 2010 22:16 UTC
fury
Member since:
2005-09-23

Yeah Kubrutu sucks. I know, I'm using it right now. Kroc, I'm sorry that you couldn't manage to get Flash installed. That's really sad. I hope you get it working but in the mean time I'm going to go check out some Youtube videos, watch Hulu, and then play some Flash games.

:-D

Reply Score: 1

RE: Kubrutu!
by Kroc on Mon 4th Jan 2010 22:32 UTC in reply to "Kubrutu!"
Kroc Member since:
2005-11-10

I know you got it working, I’m not purporting that it isn’t possible to get it to work, but I sat down one day just to run Konqueror with Flash, and I ended up downloading 4 or 5 Linux distros and each one not being able to succeed because of incompatibilities with my VM, or an installation failure, or software install that bricked the system. I tried to do something simple, and whatever bad luck and bad design meant that I went _way_, _way_ beyond what an average user would even attempt to try get a Linux system working with Flash, and I failed. It was beyond frustrating. All the problems I had were legitimate bugs and flaws, and I had decent linux users helping me on Twitter, still to no avail.

It doesn’t happen to everybody, for certain, but I’ve been testing live CDs for years and the Linux system of managing and installing software just irks me massively. It’s insanely fragile and I just don’t want regular updates bricking my entire system (which has happened more than once).

Edited 2010-01-04 22:39 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Kubrutu!
by fury on Mon 4th Jan 2010 22:42 UTC in reply to "RE: Kubrutu!"
fury Member since:
2005-09-23

Yeah I was just playing. The dilemma is, as Tess said, Debian *is* just eons better than RPM-based distros, and Ubuntu is a very decent, highly-supported distro which has a pretty big mindshare among Linux laymen. Add one K and you have a steaming pile of crap.

It doesn't really bother me though because I know tooo much about how Linux works underneath so it's not usually too hard to wrestle with the brokenness and annoyingness.

I'll admit I've never had trouble installing Flash 10 using the official Canonical repositories.

I always enjoy the OSNews podcasts btw! You guys are great! Still could use some tweaking on getting the volumes normalized though.

Kubrutu!

Reply Score: 1

Chrome and Some Other Things
by Beachchairs on Mon 4th Jan 2010 22:43 UTC
Beachchairs
Member since:
2009-04-10

Someone (I just can't sort out names during podcasts) mentioned that Chrome on Linux used GTK. While true, the default UI is a custom toolkit, and doesn't load GTK. Try this: load Chrome with the default UI. Note the startup time. Switch to GTK and restart Chrome. Note the startup time. Typically, the GTK UI is noticably slower (due to having to do GTK things, like indexing the icon directories).

I find Chrome to be quit good on KDE4. Even with OpenSuse's superintegrated Firefox, I think Chrome looks less 'made for Gnome'. Except for one OpenSuse 11.2 (which seemed to have installed wrong or something), it has worked just fine for me on KDE4. I haven't tried it on Gnome, but it was a browser that I would date on KDE. It could be that a couple extensions work different, but the ones I use did not. I tried it with good results on Fedora 12 and OpenSuse 11.2.

I would agree with Kroc: the world is moving to the web whether we like it or not.

Finally, I would like the government to have some control over corporate privacy policy. Whatshisface said you can easily change companies but you are stuck with one government, but in the real world you can't easily change companies. Take ISPs for example. Out of the 4 major ISPs here, 3 force long term contracts with high cancellation fees and high cost of entrance fees (ie buying your router, system setup fee). All of these are aimed at preventing you from switching away. So while you could switch your ISP, you end up paying out the butt by doing so. With things like Facebook, you can't really switch websites while having access to the network. You are expected to have it to. My school uses Facebook as a primary way to interface with students. You can't really get away from it. While there is one government, there is also only one Facebook. My government has been pretty good at forcing companies to honor our Privacy Act. It recently had Facebook make a buttload of changes regarding how it handles personal information. I could see that if I had come from say the US or the UK, I would be less trusting of the government.

Reply Score: 1

Why is there no iPhone Flash
by fury on Mon 4th Jan 2010 22:58 UTC
fury
Member since:
2005-09-23

The reason Apple doesn't allow Flash on the iPhone has nothing to do with performance. Adobe would pour a huge amount of development to make it perform well. The problem is because Flash is really a bytecode language. Any SWF file can contain Actionscript code, which is recompiled into native code and executed when you view it.

Flash without Actionscript is useless, there would be no buttons or anything. About the only thing they could do is Flash video, which is actually already available on jailbroken iPhones as a Safari plugin. But of course, since custom players aren't supported, this only works on fairly standard FLV streams.


Also, 3D Web Standards
There are a number of 3D standards in the works, notably WebGL is an OpenGL layer for Javascript, and a higher level graphics engine API by Google. Flash 10 has 3D but it is rarely used, because presumably it sucks. Most decent 3D games use the Unity framework which is powered by .NET or a custom native code plugin like QuakeLive's client.

Reply Score: 1

RE: Why is there no iPhone Flash
by Zifre on Tue 5th Jan 2010 01:51 UTC in reply to "Why is there no iPhone Flash"
Zifre Member since:
2009-10-04

The reason Apple doesn't allow Flash on the iPhone has nothing to do with performance. Adobe would pour a huge amount of development to make it perform well. The problem is because Flash is really a bytecode language. Any SWF file can contain Actionscript code, which is recompiled into native code and executed when you view it.

So? I know that Apple doesn't like byte-code or interpreters on the iPhone because it has security issues, but I'm sure if Apple really wanted Flash on the iPhone, they would make an exception for Adobe.

Reply Score: 1

Youtube and HTML 5 video
by Wes Selken on Wed 6th Jan 2010 07:38 UTC
Wes Selken
Member since:
2009-07-25

Google is Already experimenting with HTML 5 video. You can view videos from http://www.youtube.com/html5, it just doesn't work very well


articles about this:
http://www.downloadsquad.com/2009/11/08/html5-youtube-viewer-close-...

http://www.labnol.org/internet/youtube-video-without-flash-player/9...

Reply Score: 1