Russian Schools Switch to Linux and new Edubuntu wallpaper

Education, Free Software 6 Comments »

Found some real good news via Slashdot this morning, Russia will have a locally built Linux distribution, called “Russian OS”, installed in every school in the country by 2009. It doesn’t seem that they’ve chosen on which distribution this will be based on, but I hope it will be Ubuntu. I’d actually be happy with Debian too (as a second prize), but with Ubuntu they get a great system and can get commercial support from Canonical. This is really good news for the open source world. Hopefully we will see more announcements of this kind in the future.


Ooh, and another interesting find in the RSS reader is from Groklaw. Jill Carpenter, who does the artwork for Groklaw, has created a wallpaper for Edubuntu that will be the default wallpaper in Edubuntu 7.10! Way to go Jill!

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Nintendo is coming!!!

Games 1 Comment »

It’s official! Nintendo is coming to South Africa!

Nintendo is coming!

They will be available from CNA, Musica, Look&Listen, BT Games, Toys ‘R Us, Reggies, Toy Zone, and Incredible Connection. I searched for Wii’s when I was in Spain earlier this year, but all they had stock of was Xbox 360′s and Playstation 3′s.

Oh, and CNA, your website is rubbish, it told me that I have an invalid browser, so I pre-ordered from BT Games instead (they say the ETA is 28 September – Next Friday!)

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75% of my Filesystem represents… PACMAN!

Free Software, Games 4 Comments »


And that reminds me… some people requested that I upload the slides of the GNOME CLUG talk I presented a few weeks ago. Get them here.

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GPS Device

Gadgets 2 Comments »

Last night, I finally bought a GPS device, a JNC Navig8 GPS351. I’ve been meaning to get one for ages, but it’s just been too expensive to justify buying one. This one costs under R2000, and since I will be driving around in Jo’burg for about a month soon, I think it will be quite a handy device.

Just after buying it I saw Joe’s post on GPS’ing in Joburg, where he says “Don’t go to Jo’burg without a GPS device”. It seems that I got one just in time!

For an entry-level device, it’s better than I expected it would be. It was 2 voices a male and a female, although the male voice has a bit too strong Asian accent in my opinion. It’s quite accurate and comes preloaded with all the local maps, which is stored on a removable SD card. The only bad thing about it (which I only learned after buying it), is that it runs Windows CE. I’ve even managed to get a Fatal Exception Error in one of the applications. It seems that most of the mobile GPS software runs on Windows CE. I think this was a good choice in GPS, I’ll blog again about how useful it was in Jo’burg!

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Free ATI Drivers

Free Software 11 Comments »

I’m quite surprised at the lack of blog posts there have been about the news that ATI will be working with the Open Source community to develop 100% free 2D and 3D drivers for the Radeon chipsets. This is real big news, considering that, if you ask most Linux enthusiasts what the biggest problems in GNU/Linux distributions are, it normally comes down to the few extra proprietary software that people have to install, which are usually Java, Flash, drivers and binary firmware blobs.

Intel has been providing specifications to the community for some time now. Now that ATI (now part of AMD) will be doing the same, it will hopefully put a good deal of pressure on Nvidia to also provide specifications.

Unfortunately, Ubuntu 7.10 is already in feature freeze, and won’t ship the free ATI drivers. Mark Shuttleworth said in an interview that even though it won’t be available in the initial 7.10 release, it will be installable via ATI’s installer, and the Ubuntu team will provide the new drivers via an update, once packaged and tested.

Since I mentioned Flash earlier, I think it’s worth saying that the GNU Gnash project is moving very fast, and works as a replacement for Macromedia Flash for many users. It will be provided in Ubuntu 7.10 (Gutsy Gibbon), due for release next month.

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