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User Journal

Journal: Slackware 12.0 RC1 released

Journal by arun_s

It feels like only yesterday when I downloaded slackware 11.0, and now I see a new version's already almost released. The kernel defaults to 2.6 (finally!), and kde is somewhere at 3.5.7.

Another thing that you'd immediately notice while skimming through the changelogs is gaim's relocation to /unsupported, following a very rude comment by the pidgin people in their wiki:

We have no developers using Slack, and furthermore, several of us actively dislike that distribution for its history of broken installs, as well as for its non-existant package management. You cannot create true packages for Slack.

Ugh. I used to recommend Gaim to friends before, but I've stopped. Admittedly, they've toned down their language in recent versions of the page, but their hostility seems surprising. Anyone looking for better alternatives out there need look no further than kopete (which is default in slack anyway), or centericq (which is what I use).

User Journal

Journal: Got a new job. Nice.

Journal by arun_s

The past few months have been a hectic mess for me. 7 days a week at work, roughly 12 hours a day on all week days... its not been pretty.

For other reasons, I finally quit my old place (nice though it was). It took a really long time in making that final decision, but I just had to do it eventually. I joined my new company a coupla weeks back, and its nice!

The work environment is cool, they gave me a laptop right on the first day (that's 3 computers I have now!), and it looks like I'm gonna be nice and settled here.

I've finally got time for my personal life as well, got a lot of catching up to do in the books department. Guess I'll be a little more active in my online life as well from now.

Censorship

Journal: A Websense rant 1

Journal by arun_s

My company's been rolling out Websense in the past few weeks, and I can't believe how annoying that damn thing can get. We've already had a policy of blocking mail sites and general time wasters like orkut. Fair enough.

But now with the Websense trash in place, every odd site I open is blocked for some lame reason or the other. For instance, this amazing speech (given by Cory Doctorow to Microsoft on the evils of DRM) is blocked, as is another famous article on copy protection.

Slashdot banned us for the last 2 weeks here ($DIETY knows what some idiot at work did to get all of us banned), and it finally opened today. And guess what? Websense has blocked the YRO section, because it apparently comes under the category "Proxy Avoidance".

I can't believe the amount of money that must've been wasted to put this crap in place. And if they thought blocking sites would improve employee productivity, they're way off target. My motivation has rapidly spiraled downwards, and looking at the responses from others around me, I'm not alone either. And if they really were worried about conserving bandwidth for 'business-critical' tasks, they should've probably started blocking the online trading and sports sites that I see open all day long. Freakin' double standards.

Enough of this rant; Maddox does it far better than anyone else, so here's his scathing article on Websense (which is obviously blocked here, too).

User Journal

Journal: (re)started blogging 1

Journal by arun_s
I usually avoid blogs like the plague. No, not stuff like Slashdot and Groklaw, I mean the billions out there at Blogger and Wordpress. But for no particular reason, I've just started a new one. An earlier one at Blogger was lying untouched for more than a year.
Wordpress is decent, but not very configurable. I would've loved to be able to put my own templates and stuff. Since this just an idle pastime, I don't intend to host my own domain and stuff, so its alright I guess. No ads of course, I don't intend to ever start all that.
Red Hat Software

Journal: Red Hat: "Unthinkable"

Journal by arun_s
My experience with Red Hat is limited, but my respect for them has grown deeply. I came across their response to the Novell/Microsoft deal today: "Unthinkable".
Its nice to see not every big company is a sellout like the green chameleons at Novell.

"If truth is beauty, how come no one has their hair done in the library?" -- Lily Tomlin

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