Sunday, November 29, 2009

My Experience with Ubuntu

The last time that I had used Ubuntu was all the way back in 2007, which in my world, is a long time ago. On Monday (23/11/2009) I got a copy of Ubuntu 9.10, my first thought was to really just put it on my laptop and see how it was, then go back to Windows and discard the disk into my DVD collection. But to my amazement, I can't get over Ubuntu, and I find myself booting from the disk almost every day just so I can see the desktop and really muck around inside of it.

In 2007 I used Ubuntu for around three weeks and for that three weeks that I used it, I hated it. I wasn't able to use Microsoft word, didn't have the feel of Windows, programs I was dependant on (eg MSN) wasn't very good or nonexistent and for the most part, it didn't feel like an OS more than something somebody put together in their garage. The thing that made me go back to Vista was the fact that it couldn't hold a candle to Vista or OS X, and by that I mean, the programs, the look & the usability. By the time I had finished with Ubuntu I had developed a personal vice against open source programs and really wouldn't use them for a long time. It's only recently that I used Ubuntu that I've had my faith restored in open source programs.

In the small amount of time that I've used Ubuntu 9.10 (which is about a week or so) I've had a complete restoration in my confidence in open source programs and OS's like Ubuntu and Open Office. I don't know what it is, but something in the open source world has just made open source a lot more appealing and generally more acceptable to use in recent times. I also noticed that it's really caught up to Vista (or Windows 7) and OS X in how it looks and the effects that it comes with it, (Like Cube3d and cool features like that) it's almost like they've got their trademark. It's now a lot more of a solid choice between Windows and OS X if not another main contender and the fact that it's 100% free and so is the software on it makes for some pretty good competition in a few years.

The things I liked in Ubuntu were the ability to get drivers without going to heaps of websites, it was all there, with a checkbox asking me to download and install, I found it something that was not only incredibly helpful but extremely well thought out, it's amazing windows has not thought of doing the same. When I turned on Ubuntu, it asked me to install my graphic card drivers and my wireless USB stick as soon as they were installed I was on the net, all within 5 minutes, in windows this would've taken me around 30 minutes. Another thing that impressed me about Ubuntu was how rapidly they'd caught up to Windows and Apple, if they can catch up to major companies like Windows and Apple then what could they do if they keep increasing at this rate, I feel they'll be a huge compony by 2020.

Along with the things I liked, there were some things I didn't like, and keep in mind; I am really picky with some things. The first thing I didn't like was the font, now I don't know if it's the font itself or the OS that gives it a different feel, but something about it just annoys me, I think that the letters are really w i d e and tall maybe it's just me on that one though. Another thing that kinda made me upset for a while was the Cube3d doesn't come standard (that or I couldn't find it), that on its own isn't too bad but part of the reason I would use Ubuntu would be to use the feature, just like I went from Vista Home Basic to Ultimate so I could get flip 3d or somebody on OS X wants to be able to use Exposé, but that was too small to get me worried as I knew that you can get it working without any worries in no time after watching a few youtube videos on it. The only thing that I found hard is it was hard to get the hang of moving from Windows to Ubuntu, but then again, it is much harder going from Windows to OS X, and this is a definitely easier to learn than OS X if you're coming from Windows.

Ubuntu is a great OS that has come a long way in a short time; it has brought open source software a good name and incorporates all programs nicely into "one box". In the short amount of time that I used it I felt differently about Ubuntu and open source software. In my opinion, Ubuntu could rival Windows if it keeps being fresh and intuitive in the future. All in all, Ubuntu is great fun and I recommend getting a DVD even if you're only going to boot from the DVD once to see how it is.

Thanks for reading all.

By Matthew Willison

Friday, November 20, 2009

The Tech Conclave

I have found a new podcast that I have been listening to for a few months now, and I have found it very interesting. I thought that I would share it around by writing a short blog post about it. The tech podcast that I'm talking about it called "The Tech Conclave" and can be found by clicking the link here. The podcast talk about tech news in a fresh new way, with their host, John Raul Joven II, geeks from around the world converge to talk about all the latest tech news, from court cases that involve Pirate Bay, to the latest reviews on laptops and technology.

You can find the podcast on their website or on youtube, but the Tech Conclave has evolved from more than just a podcast, it is also an online community (found here) where you can talk to a wide range of geeks about pretty much anything tech or tech related. If you haven't already clicked onto The Tech Conclaves sites, there is a list of where you can find them below. Thanks for reading all, have a good one!

It's good to be a geek!

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Tech Conclave Website -

Tech Conclave Community -

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Random and geeky articles by two random geek guys, because we have nothing else to do.
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