31.3.06

Lusitanium

As you may have noticed, I've added a link to Lusitanium in the sidebar.

I've been an administrator of that site for a while, and it is a Portuguese Website about Portuguese Metal and Metal in Portugal.

30.3.06

KDE 3.5.2 Released

Today, the KDE Project announces the release of the K Desktop Environment 3.5.2. This second update release in the KDE 3.5 series brings an improved user experience and stability by focusing exclusively on translations and bug fixes. See the Changelog for the major changes while the info page lists the ways to download with packages currently available for Arch Linux, Kubuntu, Pardus, Red Hat and SuSE. Kubuntu have made a live CD featuring KDE 3.5.2.

Some highlights of the fixes and improvements:

  • Numerous updates to the KHTML engine used by KDE and Konqueror. Javascript handling is improved and now works with phpBB and certain wikis. Konqueror no longer shows scrollbars in the Acid2 test, making it the second browser to pass.
  • Improvements in clipboard handling through the use of the XFixes extension
  • Lots of changes to the website editor Quanta Plus

The translation teams have managed to make this release the best translated KDE release ever. KDE 3.5.2 is available in more than 60 languages and dialects, outperforming all other desktops, including several commercial offerings.

For ongoing work on future versions of KDE 3.5, the feature freeze has recently been weakened, allowing minor and well-tested new features to go into the 3.5 branch and thus be released with the next KDE 3.5 update.

The next major release will be KDE 4. A tech-preview for KDE 4 is preliminarily scheduled for the 10th anniversary of KDE in October this year.

Sony still sucks

Of course you all know by now that I HATE Sony. Yup, Sony sucks and they keep sucking. Shove your stupid UMD up your ass.

Germany laws suck

To proove, I just need to quote:


Aufgrund neuer GEMA-Richtlinien gibts nur noch 45 Sek. Streams als Hörprobe. Tut uns leid.... Danke!!!

Due to new guidelines of the German Association for Licensed Music (?) we can only offer 45 sec. streams. We´re really sorry for that... THANKS!!!

Portugal and Inovation

So, Portugal have this "technologic plan" that is a way to say "we'll spend money to convince you we're advancing in technology issues, even if we're not, and you'll like it".

Now, I've just recieved an e-mail about one "fork" of the Inov project. If I really didn't like Inov because it isn't an original name at all (Portuguese company TMN has a product called i9, which is spelled exactly in the same way), now this new "Inov|PME" thingie has it's website already DoS'd and has this logo:







Is it just me, or is this a rip-off of Novis logo?

29.3.06

A rotten Apple

I know that this isn't exactly "news", but following a discussion I just had, I feel I have to comment on the recent claims from Apple that avoiding DRM technologies is the same as sponsoring Piracy.

Now, I understand why France thinks that anyone who purchages a song must be it's owner, thus being able to listen to the mp3 in any device they want. When I buy a CD, I like the fact that I'm able to listen to in in my CD player, on my computer and on my cellphone (that nowadays acts also as my mp3 player). The same way, if I download legally an mp3 by purchasing it, I want and feel to have the right to listen to in where I want.

On the other hand, I understand why Apple is pissed off: if the law passes in France, they will have to either stop selling in France or take off their DRM so there's no limitation anymore. Either approach costs them more money than having PR people talking to the media and trying to convince the general population that the law is bad.

What I don't understand, and quite pisses me off, is what Apple's PR's are caliming.

They said that, if the law passes, “legal music sales will plummet just when legitimate alternatives to piracy are winning over customers,” the company said. Free movies would follow close behind, the company asserted, “in what will rapidly become a state-sponsored culture of piracy.” Apple also predicted that iPod sales would increase, because customers could load their players with music that can’t be protected, including music from illegal sources.

Now, that are obvious lies. People who buy music to Apple, would buy it as well if that music wasn't with DRM. And people that doesn't buy DRM'd stuff (like me) would possibly start buying music to them instead of using non-DRM'd alternatives.

28.3.06

The WTF of the day

And to finish my posts for today, check this hilarious WTF.

Linux Kernel 2.6.16.1

For those that didn't noticed, Linux Kernel 2.6.16.1 (the latest stable kernel) is out.

Imprecision

Jessica rants about the MMO's boom as I also did previously about Web 2.0 applications.

She is imprecise and misleading, tho. She says:


It effectively killed outside investment in online games in the US until Asia became recognized as a force in 2001-2002; note that the market went from over 35 MMOs in development in the US in 1994 to 4 in 1998 (that I know of), two of those being funded with ‘inventor’ money and sweat equity until they could demonstrate a working prototype. Of those 35, only 4 launched by 1998 and another 2 launched in 1999; the rest were drowned in various studio bathtubs.

That's completely wrong: you should take into consideration some stuff like the fact that Talkers and MUD's are also MMO's. And for those, I can proove you that only in 1998 more than 4 appeared!

The importance of Users

Coding Dispositions at GDC is a great article which discusses the importance of users in the design of Virtual Worlds, and the lack of importance that designers usually give to their users.

As a designer of a Virtual World, I must commit that there are two points of view that must be taken into consideration, and must be taken simultaneously.

First off, in my experience with Selva shows that its "aurean days" were when users were being taken into consideration at the point that Selva was being evolved just to fullfill users suggestions on its evolution, and it was growing up quite fast because the users were giving loads of suggestions. That time was a real win-win situation, and Selva managed to be growing quite fast, while all other Portuguese talkers were feeling the fall of talkers.

The other point is the developers own views on their Virtual World - consider them as users with their own suggestions. While taking imparcialy a decision regarding two conflictuous user suggestions is quite easy to do, you just can't be imparcial on the decision of making your own improovements, either the rest of the users will like it or not. The big fall on Selva was when I decided it should be more secure, even if usability would suffer with that. Most of Selva's users thought otherwise. Nowadays Selva has a "mid-term" approach, but most of their users are gone.

27.3.06

Mamnuts 1.6 is out

Mamnuts 1.6 has been released.

For those that still don't know, Mamnuts is a talker base, aimed to be the most bullet-proof one free for download...

24.3.06

When Virtual Worlds Collide

When Virtual Worlds Collide is a great yet short article about how will Virtual Worlds evolve in a not-so-distant future.

From the article: "Because the current metaverse evolved largely out of videogames, it makes sense that it should be composed of fiefdoms - after all, you wouldn't expect a Grand Theft Auto crack dealer to drop in for a barbecue with the Sims. But there is reason to believe that the divided metaverse is merely a transitional phase, and that its component worlds will coalesce."

Of course the article is also full of shit, and it's not worthy unless you complement it by reading this after.

And, of course, this discussion only will make sense when people start seeing the difference between Virtual Worlds and Online Games.

Why I want a 2.7 kernel

First the logs, then I'll rant on them...:

From Linux Kernel 2.6.15[.*] we get this:
Mar 18 02:52:07 Atlantis kernel: Advanced Linux Sound Architecture Driver Version 1.0.10rc3 (Mon Nov 07 13:30:21 2005 UTC).

From Linux Kernel 2.6.16 we get this:
Mar 22 22:06:33 Atlantis kernel: Advanced Linux Sound Architecture Driver Version 1.0.11rc2 (Wed Jan 04 08:57:20 2006 UTC).

Now the rant: Why the fuck in the so-called "Stable Kernel" we have a release candidate (and not a final and stable version) of some drivers, and why the fuck we changed from 1.0.10rc3 (release candidate version) to 1.0.11rc2 (another release candidate of another minor version), instead of stick with the preety much CONSIDERED stable 1.0.11 version? If you wanna play with kernel, fine, but if you refuse (as you do) to have a development version (2.7) of the kernel, couldn't you at least LEAVE THIS NOT-YET-FINAL STUFF in -mm instead of plugging them in the stable kernel release?

Damn!

22.3.06

It's not an app bug, it's an OS bug

Reading this bug entry on Mozilla Firefox list of bugs, which is marked as a duplicate of this one I can't think of anything but this: what do you expect with opening such a bug? Yes, you can loose your marriage because it happens, but then, the privacy problem shown there is not Mozilla's fault but Microsoft Windows lack of security! Want to file a bug report, do it to Microsoft, not to us! What? You think that they won't listen to you? Well, yes, you're right. What can you do about it? Just switch to a secure Operating System with a propper permissions system.

Remember, switching to Linux can save your marriage.

What an asshole...


Bill Gates just makes fun of himself, showing what people thinks about him :-P

21.3.06

Selva .news

For those who don't know, I run a Portuguese talker named 'Selva'. There are some news over there, which you can see here.

Windows sucks

I know you know I know that Windows really really sucks. But it's never too much to read other people giving more reasons on why does it suck.

Linux: 2.6.16 Kernel Released

Linus Torvalds announced the release of the 2.6.16 Linux kernel. He noted, "not a lot of changes since -rc6, but there's various random one-liners here and there (a number of Coverity bugs found, for example), and there are small MIPS and PowerPC updates." You can download the latest kernel from your nearest Linux Kernel Archive mirror [story], and browse through all the changes using the 2.6 kernel's gitweb interface.

GNUnet 0.7.0c released

Download GNUnet 0.7.0c here. gnunet-gtk is a separate download and can be found here.
This is a bugfix release for 0.7.0b. It fixes various minor bugs:
  • deadlock in the http transport
  • large downloads, in particular recursive downloads of directories, no longer abort erroneously (non-deterministic bug)
  • a crash under Win32 is fixed by using a more recent pthreads library
  • statistics display in gnunet-gtk was improved
  • content migration now works properly (previously only the first search result for a given key was cached)
  • routing works much better now (higher success rate, fewer collisions in routing table)
  • In 0.7.0c, peers are also more aggressive about using excess bandwidth to migrate content.
gnunet-pseudonym now supports multiple uses of the -k option. The amount of hashing required was reduced from quadratic to linear in one place, resulting in reduced CPU consumption for searches with many results. Memory use for 0.7.0c should stabilize at a slighly lower level compared to 0.7.0b. A Swedish translation was added thanks to Daniel Nylander. Upgrading to 0.7.0c should be trivial, simply recompile, install, stop gnunetd, run gnunet-update and restart gnunetd.

Merry Ostara

Most of you won't even know what Ostara means, but know that it is the "Tree Day" (as a matter of fact Ostara is not the "Tree Day" but the "Tree Festival"). Oh, and of course, the beggining of the Spring. Anyway, no matter how you watch it, I wish you a Merry Ostara.

Oh, and non-related but also today, happy poetry day.

20.3.06

Xgl

I eager to have a final version of Xgl... This will show you why:

17.3.06

Lack of Vision

I hate the lack of vision. Fortunately GNUnet solves all this issues... Not in Microsoft's point of view, of course, but in the point of view of those that, like me, are interested in Freedom, Privacy and Anonymity.

Yes, I know that this is my third post in sequence where I do some publicity on GNUnet. You just have to think that it just proves that (I believe that) GNUnet is an important piece on the digital future.

Privacy in your Virtual World

We really need to avoid this kind of stuff by creating an alternative that gives users privacy and anonimity... Yes, I'm talking about building a Virtual World running on top of GNUnet.

16.3.06

GNUnet: almost 0.7.0c

GNUnet is a framework for secure peer-to-peer networking that does not use any centralized or otherwise trusted services. A first service implemented on top of the networking layer allows anonymous censorship-resistant file-sharing. GNUnet uses a simple, excess-based economic model to allocate resources. Peers in GNUnet monitor each others behavior with respect to resource usage; peers that contribute to the network are rewarded with better service.

The last week has been a bug-squashing party, with various bugs finding their timely death. The bugs range from minor memory growth problems (#1014) to content migration bugs (#1009 and a series of general bugs that made migration not work in 99% of all cases).

The most visible bugs however are likely the download-related problems (#1005, #1006 and #1007) that plagued directory downloads. Finally there were some cosmetic improvements (#1003) and a new version of plibc fixes some Win32 specific crashes.

The new code will have a few more days to settle (and people time to find new bugs), and then we'll have version 0.7.0c released.

libextractor v0.5.11 released

libextractor is a library used to extract meta-data from files of arbitrary type. It is designed to use helper-libraries to perform the actual extraction, and to be trivially extendable by linking against external extractors for additional file types.

This release adds support for extracting additional metadata from MS Word (OLE2) streams, including language, document statistics and editing history.

KDE

I love the new way (I guess that it's since KDE 3.5) of ripping an Audio CD on KDE. You just have to open konqueror, click on "Audio CD" and you have a folder with wav's, ogg's, mp3's and some others... Just drag'n'drop the folder you have to the place you want it... et voilá!

To know more about this usable way of seeing an Audio CD, with screenshots and stuff like that, you might want to click here.

Source independent

It would be really great if anyone could use their way of choice to create a document and have the same pratical result, wouldn't it? Even if some Text Processors like KOffice, OO.org and MS Office are going to adopt their versions of an open document standard, and even if in the future we'll be able to get a real standard used by the most popular Text Processors, you're still manipulating the source. What do I mean? Well, if you want to produce the same output using any possible way to produce it, you should have a standard output and not a standard input. The thing we have most approximated to that cenario is PDF, but the lack of editing PDF's support in the most popular tools makes the format quite invalid: I could bet that everyday you have more circulation of .doc files than of .pdf ones. So, what we could use is supporting PDF edition in our tools: I would like to be able to open a .pdf file in OO.org or Microsoft Word or, in my case, have a google pdf2latex tool, be able to edit it quickly, and save, having in the output a same-looking altered PDF. At this point, the only Text Processor I know that does that is KWord, and some distro's (like Fedora) have that feature disabeled (I guess they did it because of a now-solved security issue, and they "forgot" to give use back that option). But only one isn't good enough: if you're swapping files with other KWord users, then you can just swap KWord files... And, to my personal use, there's no pdf2latex tool... yet.

14.3.06

Quick Fix

A Quick-Fix post:

8.3.06

Merankorii is Spam?

I was already pissed off with Blogger. And now this:



Your blog is locked

Blogger's spam-prevention robots have detected that your blog has characteristics of a spam blog. (What's a spam blog?) Since you're an actual person reading this, your blog is probably not a spam blog. Automated spam detection is inherently fuzzy, and we sincerely apologize for this false positive.

You won't be able to publish posts to your blog until one of our humans reviews it and verifies that it is not a spam blog. Please fill out the form below to get a review. We'll take a look at your blog and unlock it in less than a business day.

If we don't hear from you, though, we will remove your blog from Blog*Spot within 10 days.

Find out more about how Blogger is fighting spam blogs.




So, it seems that Merankorii's blog is considered Spam. I wonder... why? Is it that because there's a link to buy something (the latest CD)?

Hot to have nice sleeping times

Although I don't completely agree with it, and although I had read it in a rush and I'll have to do it more carefully, this article is interesting for those that want to regulate their sleep times.

7.3.06

TODO

When TalkersPT is up again (I don't know why it isn't) I should update Planet Noori to show me some news on Marilyn Manson. Unfortunately, the good sites with news on Marilyn Manson doesn't have RSS feeds, so I think I'll have to stick with Marilyn Manson on Google News. Eek.

Phantasmagoria, a movie by Marilyn Manson

Culture Cafe, a French movie blog run by Christophe Greuet, has posted two stills from the forthcoming PHANTASMAGORIA film. It also shows a small version of the teaser poster that one could see briefly behind Manson at the Berlin press conference.

Phantasmagoria is a movie being produced by Marilyn Manson.

Read the article (in French) here.

Linux Kernel 2.6.15.5-6 released with security fix

Linux Kernel 2.6.15.5-6 has been released, fixing a security issue that enables local DoS.

Euronode

Euronode released a web site which allows users to build pre-configured Debian GNU/Linux servers, tailor-made for their exact needs. Users can follow a simple web-based wizard to choose services (web, mail, database, samba, etc.), and options. Once done, the web site will generate a bootable .iso image, with all configuration and server parameters already set up.

It features:

  • Latest Linux kernel 2.6.13 / i586 optimized
  • Debian Sarge system with last security updates
  • Recent hardware support : SCSI, S-ATA, Hardware RAID, Gigabit Ethernet, etc.
  • Software RAID and LVM 2 ready
  • XFS filesystem with Access Control Lists
  • Encrypted partitions with AES_i586 cipher
  • Hardware auto-detection
  • Automatic installation
  • Ready to serve on first reboot
And it installs and configures the most used software you'll need for a server:
  • Apache 1.3.33, PHP 4.3.10, Awstats 6.4, Mod-SSL 2.8.22, Mod-Perl 1.29.0.3
  • Postfix 2.1.5, Clamav 0.84, Spam Assassin 3.0.3, Fetchmail 6.2.5
  • Mysql 4.0.24, PHPMyadmin 2.6.2
  • Proftpd 1.2.10
  • Samba 3.0.14
  • PhpGroupWare 0.9.16
  • OpenSSH 3.8.1, Webmin 1.180
  • Most popular Unix tools : vim 6.3, mc 4.6.0, gcc 3.3.5, perl 5.8.4, python 2.3.5, ruby 1.8.2, nmap 3.81, screen 4.0.2 ...
I like the idea but I hadn't try it myself. If you do, please comment here on your oppinion... Anyway, this sucks because:
  • You have to pay for the service
  • It's only server-oriented, they should do the same for desktop-oriented software
If you still wanna check it, do it here...

BTW, I've tried to post this several times and you even may have noticed that my blog was with some weird problems lately. Seems that I was affected by this bug, and I'm starting to comprehend why so many people say that Blogger sucks. Maybe I'll migrate from blogger to any other place in some time...

3.3.06

WinApp 2.1.0 Beta 3 Released

WinApp 2.1.0 Beta 3 has been released, fixing the SSL connection problems, the QIOS DevSuite popup, history list overload and problems when trying to shutdown windows when WinApp is running.

Mamnuts 1.5

Mamnuts 1.5 is out.

Mamnuts 1.4

Mamnuts 1.4 is out.

Changes in the Portuguese Language

This is an interesting article (in Portuguese) about why it's author doesn't agree with the Portuguese Language revision. I agree with him.

Porque não quero o «novo» Acordo Ortográfico

2.3.06

Planet Noori Update

I've just updated Planet Noori so it shows diggdot.us news instead of /. ones.

For those who're wondering, diggdot.us is (basicly) a Planet which aggregates /., digg and del.icio.us.

1.3.06

Metacrap

"Metacrap" is an insightful rant on metadata. I think it is an worth-reading article, but you should take it with a grain of salt.

2006 is over ;-)

So, at the beggining of the year I made some resolution on what to do in 2006. By now, all the resolutions are done, it took me 2 months to do what I planned for 12. The think that took longer was the 12 contributions to OSS software.

I guess that in 2007 I have to think in more realistic resolutions ;-)

libextractor 0.5.10 released

libextractor 0.5.10 has been released. This release fixes some minor security problems in the PDF extractor. The OLE2 extractor supports additional mime types. The TAR extractor is now extracting date, format long filenames and supports more checksum variants.

Check it out.

CV update

I've just uploaded my updated CV to reflect my latest publication.