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Comment: Re:ZRAM (Score 1) 132

by pmontra (#46621189) Attached to: Linux 3.14 Kernel Released

I have a 16 GB laptop and I don't have any swap. I never run out of memory. free -m tells me that it's using about 4 GB for programs and data and almost 10 GB for file system buffers. I understand that I could get some more buffers if it compressed in RAM those pages that would have been swapped out, but is that really important? If you have little RAM you don't want to swap into it, if you have plenty you don't swap.

Comment: Tourists (Score 1) 97

by pmontra (#46516013) Attached to: Brazil Blocks Foreign Mobile Phones

So you go on vacation in Brazil and you either pay international roaming fees or you buy a cheap dumb phone to make local calls. Lame but not too expensive. Furthermore a dump phone needs to be charged once per week or even less frequently.

Btw, are they going to confiscate tourists clothes on entry? They've not been not bought in Brazil, so no sales tax paid there!

Comment: Re:I want Ubuntu 8.04 back. (Score 2) 26

by pmontra (#46433637) Attached to: Ubuntu Gnome Seeking Long Term Support Status

I admire both Canonical and the Gnome team because they made bold decisions and innovated the desktop. Unfortunately they moved into directions far away from how I like to use my desktop. At least I hope Canonical succeeds in giving us a device that can be both a phone and a computer. My dream is a 100 g (3.5 oz) device with the same computing power of a quad core i7. Many years to go.

Disclaimer: I'm using better and worse in a subjective way in this post. I'm not deluding myself by thinking that everybody must agree with me.

I started using Gnome as my primary DE in 2009 coming from XP (Vista being the alternative, ugh). Gnome 2 was vastly superior to XP. More beautiful and less clicks to perform any given task. So we might argue about what's better, Gnome or OSX, but in my experience both of them are better that XP and 7 (*). I won't even start talking about Windows 8. All my friends hate it but they decided they won't downgrade to Windows 7 (too complex to do) or switch to Linux, which is a know unknown to them even if most of them are using only Openoffice and Firefox/Chrome on Windows and very little else, no games.

(*) Actually I never liked Mac's top menu (since 1984) and the dock (it's distracting). I'd say that parts of Windows GUI are better than OSX (the windows and start menus) and parts are worse (pretty much everything else).

Given a choice I'd take a configurable OSX, to get rid of everything I don't like so you won't be surprised if I liked Gnome 2. I configured it with only a bottom panel and I added the Compiz cube to manage virtual desktops. The visual 3D effect while switching helps me remember where I am in desktop-land. I've been happy with that arrangement since then.

I occasionally had to use a Mac and I kept disliking the main ideas behind its GUI. I also occasionally had to use Win 7 and I didn't find it any better than XP. It has the same odd dynamics of waiting until a pendrive registers in the system (how can Linux make it happen instantaneously?), having to negotiate that maze the control panel became along the years, or having to install drivers to make hardware work (**)

(**) If the hardware is very new maybe there is no Linux driver, game over. But otherwise it's plug and play. My webcam, scanner, network printer, camera and smarphone (as USB drives) worked without me having to do anything. Why not on Windows?

I used Gnome 3 and KDE recently on a new PC because I run into some bugs with my Gnome Classic desktop (which - btw - is GTK3, not 2). I ruled out Unity because of the top panel and the launcher. Too bad because the HUD and lenses are useful but it's all or nothing. I tweaked the Gnome shell with extensions until it looked almost like my old desktop. It was not as good as that and before I even started to tweak the theme (the default is ugly black) it started freezing from time to time. So I gave a chance to KDE.

KDE was a good surprise at the beginning. It's very easy to make it behave like my old desktop, however it lacks polish and usability. All the DE have a Redmondian sense of aesthetics and interactions that makes me feel odd at using it. At least it seems that they tried to clone and perfect Windows 7, not 8, and they succeeded. However they perpetrated those same Windows's original sins of hiding external drives in the tray icon bars, too many clicks to do anything, etc. It's a good DE if you come from Windows but it tastes bad if you come from Gnome or (I think) OSX.

I eventually found fixes and workarounds for the bugs I was experiencing with Gnome Classic so I'm back to it. That's a clean and simple desktop and it suits my needs.

To recap, my hierarchy is Gnome 2 > Gnome 3 > OSX/Unity > KDE > Windows 7/XP > Windows 8 with the OSX/Unity not being usable by me because of insisting on the top menu and dock/launcher.

Comment: Re: Why? (Score 1) 2219

by pmontra (#46184635) Attached to: Slashdot Tries Something New; Audience Responds!
Of course, and of course I probably took jobs that ended up doing no good to anybody without me knowing it. The fault for that is always with the customer. I was only rationalizing why those UI designers blamed by GP are doing to /. what they are doing: customer asks, designer/developer acts. I don't think the designers made the requirements. This statement from Dice (italics mine)

We want to take our current content and all the stuff that matters to this community and deliver it on a site that still speaks to the interests and habits of our current audience, but that is, at the same time, more accessible and shareable by a wider audience.

hints at a very clear requirement from the customer and incremental changes won't make it. They want something like TechCrunch with that all gray design? See how they look similar. Lucky us Dice still doesn't require us to sign in with facebook, disqus, livefyre to comment (TC periodically changes the comment hosting provider).

Comment: Re: Why? (Score 2) 2219

by pmontra (#46184005) Attached to: Slashdot Tries Something New; Audience Responds!

UI designers are paid to design. What gives them more money: working for one year on a complete redesign that pisses off everybody with the exception of their self-deluded customer or telling the customer "if it's not broke don't fix it"? Even if one designer gives the right anwer and moves on to another project sooner or later they'll find a designer that will accept to work on it. Way sooner than later, actually.

That logic applies to Slashdot, Unity, Gnome 3, Win 8, etc.

Comment: Re:Classic Desktop (Score 2) 503

Exactly me too.
After a lot of tuning my Ubuntu desktop is down to this: a bottom bar with the names of the open windows; the Applications and Places menus; a very seldom used icon to minimize all windows; the Netspeed and the System Monitors applets; the generic applet that collects application icons for Skype, Shutter, Dropbox, keyboard layout switch, network manager, logout and the HH:MM clock.
I use ALT-F2 to run Firefox, Thunderbird and Emacs in the rare cases I have to close them. Basically they boot up with the computer and stay open until I have to shut it down for a kernel upgrade.
Last but not least I'm using compiz cube to organize my virtual desktops. I found that the tridimensional hint of rotating a cube (control-alt left/right arrow) is better than arranging the desktops in an abstract bidimensional way.
That's it. It is build on Ubuntu 12.04 fallback mode, or what they called it.
Now, somebody should explain me why those guys from Canonical or Gnome should know better than me how I'd like to work.

Comment: Re:Sorry man, but not everyone agrees with you (Score 1) 1098

by pmontra (#46061815) Attached to: FSF's Richard Stallman Calls LLVM a 'Terrible Setback'

BSD is for people that are happy if somebody takes their code, improves on it and don't share the improvements when they distribute the improved code in binary format. For me that's working for free for somebody and that's not fair. Obviously corporations like BSD precisely for that reason and I don't understand why anybody would want to help them.

GPL mandates that if they distribute the improved binaries they have to share the improved source code. So I worked for free but I get the improvements back and that's a fair exchange. Obviously corporations are less happy with that because they also help their competitors (but their competitors would help them back).

That said, many developers are paid to work on BSD or GPL projects nowadays and they don't have a word in the choice of the OSS license.

% APL is a natural extension of assembler language programming; ...and is best for educational purposes. -- A. Perlis

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