Wednesday, August 24, 2005
Sunday, August 21, 2005
I am a big fan of AMD. I have a Athlon XP based system for my parents in my home town, Coimbatore. I have a Pentium 4 based Home PC that given by my company at my home in Bangalore. My company has a nice option of two desktops (one at office and one at home ) or one laptop. I don't like lugging around laptops, so I had opted for two desktops. Recently I have been considering buying my own laptop or switching to a laptop at office and building my own system at home. I decided to switch to a laptop at office and build my own AMD64 based desktop.
I am planning to assemble mine, so what I am going to say now is not a problem for me personally. However, I am very puzzled by the complete absense of advertisements for AMD based systems recently in Bangalore Times of India. I used to see frequent ads a few months back but recently I haven't seen a single one. LG started advertising AMD based LG MyPC but now you only see LG ads with a Intel Inside logo. Same story for HCL. I don't even see the occasionaly ads that I used to see for non-branded AMD based systems. Call me a conspiracy theorist, but is this Intel's literal monopoly marketing muscle at work? Why are there so many advertisements for Intel based systems when AMD based ones give much more value for money?
Yesterday's first Debian Developer's conference went off very well. Many thanks to Prof. Sadagopan, S. Nagaran from HP and all the other organisers that worked in the background. The event did not have high visibility, so I was pleasantly surprised when about a hundred people turned up. You can read more about the event in Natarajan's Blog and Ramki's Blog.
The meet was a wonderful experience for me and I met a lot of interesting people. I have been wanting to meet the folks behind the fantastic IndLinux effort and I had the good opportunity to meet Ramakrishna Reddy. We happen to live pretty close to each other and I hope to attend their developer meet the coming week.
I met some very interesting GNU fans, I don't remember all the names. I do remember Alok. We were talking about GNU Emacs and emacs-multi-tty. I would've loved to chat some more, but unfortunately I had a train to catch to my home town. Speaking about my home town, I met some guys from PSG College of Technology, Coimbatore. I was happy to find some users of my tamil-gtk2im package :-).
They are a very enthusiastic bunch of people, and that's the thing I've been missing about these meetings. You meet so many so many like minded people at meet ups and it's a lot of fun. I think I've missed out a lot by not attending such meets, including the Bangalore Linux User's group meets that used to be regularly held a while back. The BLUG meet is back the coming weekend and I'll definitely try to attend this time.
Friday, August 12, 2005
send-hook '~t <blog_addr>@blogger.com' 'set content_type="text/html"'But nothing seems to work. I have to set the content-type manually by typing "^T" in the Compose menu :-(.
The website isn't completely ready yet, so I thought I should post this on my blog.
____________________________________First Annual Bangalore Debian Developer Conference
Saturday, August 20, 2005 2:30pm-6:30pm (Pre-announcement)The first annual Bangalore Debian Developer Conference will be held at the
International Institute of Information Technology (IIIT,) Bangalore on Saturday, August 20, 2005 2:30pm-6:30pm. Debian and Free Software developers from Bangalore meet for a half-day interaction on Debian. The conference focus will be technical in nature. Being the first conference and with very few volunteers, we are organizing this conference as a low-key, techie conference. The main objective of this conference is to create a network and ecosystem for Debian Developers in Bangalore.
The target audience is: current or aspiring Debian developers, interested and sophisticated users of Debian GNU/Linux distribution from Bangalore. During the conference a few of attending developers will give talks about particular topics about or otherwise affiliated with Debian GNU/Linux.
Prof.S. Sadagopan, Director, IIIT-Bangalore has kindly agreed to inaugurate the conference.
The schedule will be published during the conference and isn't finalized yet. The broad topics will include discussions on potential development initiatives Debian developers could take up, sharing experience by Debian developers who have contributed and other experience sharing. This conference also aims at defining goals for the next one year among participants for Debian GNU/Linux based activities. The conference registration is free. However, interested participants are expected to be pre-registered. Please visit http://www.iiitb.ac.in/debconf/register.html to register yourself for the conference. You can also register by sending mail to: email@example.com. Please visit the IIIT-B website for details of the venue and how to reach.
Acknowledgement: This year's Bangalore Debian Developer Conference is being organized in collaboration with and support from IIIT-Bangalore.This posting was made by S. Nagarajan (firstname.lastname@example.org) who's driving this effort to DebianIndia@yahoogroups.com and I am posting this here to reach a wider audience.
As some of you may be aware there are only two Debian Developers in India. This is an abysmally low number, and I have to admit that I personally haven't done much to address this problem. I thank S. Nagarajan for taking this up and hope this mini conference helps to get more developers involved.
By the time Perl 6 project started, I had found Python and more or less switched to it for most of my programming needs. Even though I missed the crispness of perl, and had trouble accepting whitespace significance in a programming language long after I stopped programming in Fortran, I learnt to appreciate Python's clean design. However, I still followed Perl development and used to read Larry Wall's Exegesis talks on Perl 6. IMHO Perl 6 changes the language too radically and it's simply taking too long to release. I am sure Perl 6 will be released sooner or later, but it's so different from Perl that I wonder if it will be really relevant. I think many people have or would have moved to Python or Ruby tired of waiting for Perl 6.
Mind you, I am not saying that Perl is dead. Far from it. C has managed to survive mostly unchanged for over 25 years. Perl is a wonderful language and I still believe every Unix programmer should learn the language. I am sure Perl would be in any good Unix programmer's toolbox for a long time to come. My only question is whether that'll be true for Perl 6? Or would people migrate to Ruby which is closer in spirit to Perl than Python.
In case you're wondering, I did spend some time with Ruby. I think it's a nice language, but I didn't find a compelling advantage over Python to switch. Python's evolution is very well managed and I believe Python has and will continue to borrow some of the nice features from Ruby.
Thursday, August 04, 2005
Kumar Appaiah comments "If you are really bothered about resource-hungry Evolution, how can you prefer Thunderbird, which is, if anything, worse than Evolution when it comes to resources?". Well, that's not been my experience. Evolution starts other processes in the background (evolution-alarm and evolution-data-server) besides launching it's own copies of spamd if I turn on junk mail checking. Still, I decided to give it another try and configured three IMAP accounts and a usenet account (same as my thunderbird) and here's the resource usage
30984 rganesan 16 0 170m 79m 17m S 0.0 15.8 1:37.58 evolution 8428 rganesan 16 0 223m 51m 22m S 0.0 10.2 1:36.69 mozilla-thunderbird
Even though the VM size comes up smaller, combined with the other background processes, evolution's VM size comes up much higher. Besides, I guess it doesn't really make sense comparing the VM size, it's the RSS which really matters. Evolution also shows up other quirks when talking to Myrealbox IMAP server. Myrealbox's IMAP server doesn't appear to be fully standards compliant but still Evolution's quirks are very strange. Some folders appear twice and the Sent folder doesn't show up at all. The second quirk is especially annoying and strange because when I try to subscribe folders the missing folder shows up as already subscribed. On my other E-mail account on Fastmail, Evolution does not appear to take into account the folder prefix that I give (I tried both INBOX and INBOX.). Any way, despite these issues, I am actually beginning to like the look and feel of Evolution. It's a really polished UI, I'll probably play around with it some more.
I switched to using IMAP because I wanted an account accessible from multiple machines (I don't like carrying a laptop). But IMAP has the added advantage that I can easily switch between mail clients as I please :-). Kumar also comments that he prefers mutt any day. I like mutt too and I use mutt for all my pop accounts (including gmail). However, mutt's IMAP support is not good enough for me because, first it doesn't cache and second working with multiple folders is not easy.