Wikia Search

Free Software 3 Comments »

Earlier this week, the Wikia wiki-based search engine launched it’s first public alpha. For a search engine in such an early stage, it’s really quite nice. It’s user maintained, and I like the mini-summaries it provides for your search results. It would be nice if there was a whiteboard for each search result, where users could make quick notes about their search results and findings that would benefit other users.


I also like the URL’s more. “” looks much less intimidating to users than “” or “”.

It also has nifty profile pages for its users/contibutors, which seems similar in some ways to the Facebook profile pages.


While Wikia Search has come a long way in a short time, the actual search content need a lot of work. But if you consider the rate at which Wikipedia is growing, and if Wikia Search only grows half as fast, it might be everyone’s favourite search engine quite soon.

Read more about the Wikia launch on Tectonic.

SLUG - 10 Schools - One Day

Education, Free Software No Comments »

Today (June 16), we (Shuttleworth Foundation and SLUG (Schools Linux Users’ Group) installed 10 tuXlabs in one day! This is a repeat of the Freedom day / Operation Freetux / U-Day (and other names that the project had) from last year. These ten schools will be running Ubuntu GNU/Linux with the Linux Terminal Server Project. This modified version of Ubuntu also includes some enhancements taken from K12-LTSP and is currently nicknamed Skubuntu. There will soon be an official educational Ubuntu distribution called EdUbuntu, although the project doesn’t have any set goals yet. The installations went well, with few glitches. The only problem that I had to tend to was that someone accidentally re-installed on of the servers, so I’ll have to go back to put Wikipedia, moodle and Computers4kids back on. Besides that, the only other problem was a monitor or two blowing up at schools. Since we’ve anticipated this, an extra monitor or two were sent to the schools, so that wasn’t too big a deal. The braai afterwards was very laid back (I think people were a bit tired), but there was a general feeling of goodwill, the Sluggers really did well! On Monday the help desk will phone the 10 schools and make sure that everything is running fine.

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