29 Jun 2007

Safari: exploring the net

A few weeks ago, Apple announced the public free release of Safari, it's legendary web browser. As an enthusiast, I downloaded it. And started to adventure on the Internet to see what's so amazing at it.

Safari's website claims that it's got major advantages. I do admit that Safari's indeed faster than any other web browser I've used; may it be for surfing or for downloading. Of course, it's not going to beat a download manager which supports threads!

The other feature which I think is new is the idea of 'private browsing'.

I get all the other features in my favourite Mozilla Firefox on the other hand.

But I've got a question: why has Apple made a release for Windows? And not for any distro of Linux? Well, I think it's following the same concept as it did for iTunes. Apple wants to make Windows users shift from their OS to Mac OS.

So how does it do so? Simple:

  1. introduce some new idea
  2. work well on the graphics part - that's what every user want nowadays
  3. make things as simple as possible
  4. don't give too many options that will overwhelm users
  5. make it free!
So saying, I don't find the download rate in Safari nor the status bar to know what's happening, like a page is loading, it's fethcing some images so I should wait, etc. (Not to confuse with the percentage a page has loaded!)

19 Jun 2007

NFSU2 LAN experience

Last Thursday, Yanesh, a friend, invited me to his house for a LAN party. Our plan was to connect some PC's and to play NFS Underground 2 on LAN!

That was just fantastic!

Our plan was like this:

  • Connect as many PC's together. However, we had no network hub. So we decided to do with only two computers.
  • No hub also meant to modify existing LAN cables! We had to arrange for a crossover cable. Luckily, I use one at home. So I brought it to Yanesh's.
  • Another friend, Kavin, brought his computer too! Great!
We started our first hour by configuring LAN (simple using Windows XP). But the great challenge was to be able to start a game on LAN! Wow, after an hour Kavin and I succeeded in finding the right sequence of buttons to push!

Here are the steps in some simple words:
  • Select a PC to be the server and create a game with server mode
  • With other computer, select "filter" and choose the right settings
  • Then click the game to enter
  • Click "Ready" on top
  • Click "Start" on server
And did the game start!

We were seven in all; we made three teams and each team played against each other team a few times...

We did not encounter any technical issue.... that was cool.... NFSU2 played well....

The tournament finished at three in the morning!

Yannick, a friend, had to go to an interview at eight! We accompanied him home.

As for me, I had to get to work at nine. So I went to bed at Yanesh's at four! Got up at seven-thirty.... and obviously wouldn't make it on time!

No need to say that I was a bit sleeping at work that day!

But it was all great fun! Thanks very much guys!

Next time we're planning to play with more computers and using a network hub, of course!

14 Jun 2007

Open source in the news

It's good news that Click has finally talked about open-source and more specifically about Ubuntu since the last few weeks.

A few years ago, Stephen Cole (remember that Click Online presenter?) said that he did not consider Linux to be an OS since it was not enough user-friendly and many hardware wouldn't work. But nowadays, all this has changed. Most linux distros have a superb GUI (Gnome and KDE, amongst others) and many devices like printers, scanners, webcams, ADSL modems, and others, have drivers in-built in the Linux distro.

And on top of all, open-source is everywhere today!

I'm using Ubuntu Server at work and Kubuntu Desktop at home. I should say that the server is really easy to install and deploy. Apt-get is really a nice thing (thanks Debian!): installing and upgrading packages are simply a pleasing thing.