Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Linux on a Laptop, Twitter, and writing open source code on a Mac

Linux on a Laptop

I just received notice today that an article I wrote back in March of this year is now being published. Its in the new LiNUX+ Magazine, and is about choosing a laptop for Linux. It is kind of funny in a way: I am so used to the immediacy of weblogs and tweets that publishing in a real paper magazine just seemed to take forever.

I kind of knew that when I was writing the article in an intellectual way, and so made an effort to keep the article not specifically tied to any particular version of Linux, knowing that they would have all revved versions since I wrote it. Example: Mint 2.2 was current at that time I think, and of course I'm on 3.0 now. Emotions clearly did not know how long it was going to take. It feels like forever ago.

The topic seemed pretty germane to what I have been up to lately, what with messing with Fedora 7 on the IBM X30 laptop. My most recent post of at TalkBMC (going up later today actually) counterpoints the Fedora 7 post I did here last week, and notes a new trial I had with that.


Anne Gentle, former colleague from TalkBMC and now Blogmaster of her new blog "just write click" has been talking about using twitter as a form of micro-blogging. I never really gave it much thought, even though whurley and Y also talk about social networking and twitter and stuff all the time.

Three things then happened:

  1. I got an iPhone
  2. It had an app called "Pockettweets" that let me update a twitter wherever I am and whatever I may doing
  3. I found David Hewlitt (Dr. McKay) from Stargate: Atlantis is a religious twitter'er.
OK. Fine. I'm trying it out to see what it all does.
I'll be honest: So far this seems more like a 'dear diary' thing than a micro-blog. But the iPhone makes doing it dead easy, so we'll see where it goes. It was kind of fun to look back and see the progression of events as posted that led up to this and my last TalkBMC entry. Seeing the entry about getting my new comics reminds that...

MySQL and CocoaMySQL

My wife has given up on eBay applications Over and over and over she has tried to make them do what she wants them to do, only to find the software she has paid for to be unstable, slow, behind the times, etc. She has tried and tried to get out of programming, but she finally decided that the time has come to just solve the problem by writing her own application. She is also work on an inventory management tool for some friends of ours that run "Comic Book Orphanage".

This is a brave new world for her. She has written tons of applications over the years for the MS Office suite. One tool she wrote in MS Access saved a hospital in Galveston literally millions of dollars. She knows how to code.

She has sworn off MS as anything other than a target platform. I talked to whurley a bit as he is a well known Apple hacker, and so now she is off learning how to use MySQL and CocoaMySQL. Later she'll add in Apple's Xcode, and she hopes to be able to write applications on her beloved Macbook, and just cross-compile them to MS Win. It should be very interesting. Apple does it with iTunes and Safari, so it can be done... More on that as it progresses, but it is very cool having another Open Sourcer in the house.

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