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Comment: Re:Liberated? What about the hardware? (Score 3, Insightful) 227

by ssam (#48857591) Attached to: Librem: a Laptop Custom-Made For Free/Libre Software

You have to take steps to make progress. You can take something useful and make it more open (like librem) or you could start from scratch and make something very basic that is completely open.

You can take bigger strides towards openness and get something like Novena, but then you make other sacrifices (size, cost, performance).

I guess if you had infinite money you could make a high spec, completely opensource laptop.

Comment: Better software support (Score 1) 592

by ssam (#48844675) Attached to: Why Run Linux On Macs?

For a bunch of software that some people use, life is just easier on Linux. Applications like Gimp, Libreoffice etc tend to work better. Last time I tried GIMP on mac os x you had to click everything twice, once to focus the window and again to actually click something (maybe fixed now). Sometimes there are up to date no Mac builds of a project because none of the developers use mac, and none of the users with macs know how to compile it. Installing things can be a big pain compared to having a good package manager.

Comment: Re:why start after the fact? (Score 4, Funny) 219

by ssam (#48781449) Attached to: LAPD Orders Body Cams That Will Start Recording When Police Use Tasers

For some rough numbers, at 5V a raspberrypi A+ takes 500mA plus 250mA for the camera ( ). Maplin sell a 5V 10Ah portable battery pack (for charging phones and tablets) which weighs 330g ( ). So off the shelf hardware gives you a 13 hour battery life.

I assume if energy efficency is your goal you could do a bit better.

+ - An early gift: ODF support in Google Drive->

Submitted by Anonymous Coward
An anonymous reader writes "Google's Chris DiBona told a London conference last week that ODF support was coming next year, but today the Google Drive team unexpectedly launched support for all three of the main variants — including long-absent Presentation files. You can now simply open ODT, ODS and ODP files in Drive with no fuss. It lacks support for comments and changes but at least it shows progress towards full support of the international document standard, something conspicuously missing for many years."
Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:The obvious answer (Score 1) 488

by ssam (#48513761) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Non-Coders, Why Aren't You Contributing To Open Source?

Actually yes, assuming you have a phone (or similar) with GPS.

There are a couple of projects collecting locations of cell phone towers and wifi hotspots to allow geolocation to devices without GPS and faster geolocation for with GPS. Having opensource databases means you can do lookup without having to report your location to a google/apple/nokia and means you can do offline look ups. See or or

If you are cycling on cycle paths, then you could record GPS traces and upload them to openstreet map. That will require a bit of time on the computer, but the valuable work is the actual recording.

"The pyramid is opening!" "Which one?" "The one with the ever-widening hole in it!" -- The Firesign Theatre