Bill Kendrick writes: "My first computer was the short-lived 1200XL model of the Atari 8-bit computer line. I finally got ahold of one again, after having to settle with a lesser Atari system. My immediate reaction was: "damn, it's as big as my Dell Inspiron laptop!", and I couldn't resist doing one of those side-by-side comparisons, complete with photos of one system sitting atop the other. (I also put the 1983 storage and speeds in 2009 terms, for the benefit of the youngin's out there.)
While, in many ways, the Atari pales in comparison to the latest technology they cram into laptops, I do get to benefit from SD storage media. It also still boots way faster than Ubuntu on the Dell, has a far more ergonomic keyboard, and is much more toddler-proof."
Bill Kendrick writes: "This week a new release of Tux Paint shipped. (For those not yet familiar, it's an open source drawing program for kids, which runs on Linux, Windows and Mac OS X.) This time around, all of the so-called 'Magic' effects (blur, mirror-image, smudge, etc.) were stripped out of the main code base and turned into plug-ins that are loaded at runtime. Along with Pango-based text rendering and new input methods for Thai and Traditional Chinese (and the previous version's addition of Japanese and Korean input methods and SVG vector graphics support), this paint program "for kids 3 and up" just might be on its way to becoming a contender with the likes of Gimp and Photoshop! Aside from making it easier for us to develop new Magic tools, we are hoping that the new plug-in feature will used by high school students to learn the basics of graphics programming." Link to Original Source
Bill Kendrick writes: "Tux Paint, the little kids' answer to The GIMP, has been updated for the first time in nearly a year. Among other things, the new slideshow feature will be useful in the classroom for presentations, and at home for silly flip-book animations; the list of supported languages has crept up to nearly 70; sound effects are now in stereo (hey, it's cool to hear the brush sounds move from one speaker to the other as you paint!); and you can now make animated brushes, brushes that change depending on which direction you're painting, or do both. It's already available as RPMs for Red Hat and Fedora CORE, for Windows and Mac OS X. I hear it's already on in Debian's "incoming", too! And it's not justforkids."