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Comment Re:This has been tried before (Score 2) 171

Just to ask, where have you seen this? As in, what city and district?

I was in several computer markets (as you know, "store" does not quite describe the situation in a Chinese building of small shops) last weekend. I saw no linux.

That is not only in my city; but in the many I visit. If there is an Ubuntu store or Kosk in Shanghai I would like to know where it is, just so I can visit it (I am not in Shanghai; but, it is only a few hours travel away). I will also be in HK next week, near Wan Chi, If there are any in that district I would also be interested.

I don't know where exactly, and even "thousands" scattered about China isn't particularly common. Admittedly, my information comes from statistics quoted in a presentation (alongside some pictures of the kiosks).

Comment Re:This has been tried before (Score 5, Interesting) 171

The Chinese government tried pushing Linux in the past, research “Red Flag” Linux. It was a failure. I only saw it once. I happened to be in a shop in Xian and I saw it on a computer. Before I could comment on it the sales man assured me that if I purchased the computer they would put a copy of Windows on it “so it could be useful.”

As others have commented, Linux is competing with free copies of Windows. Further, it lacks the games that the Chinese want (also free).

Free as in speech has no ring to the Chinese ear. The issue is broken down to choosing between two flavours of free beer.

You might be surprised to learn that there are already thousands of Ubuntu stores and Kiosks in China, selling laptops with Ubuntu preloaded. China was a natural fit for Canonical because it's already a bigger market for them than the US.

Comment Re:Two sides to this coin (Score 1) 236

On one hand I do like the fact that this has potential to bring games out to the linux market that haven't been there, and to eliminate the viewpoint that there are no gamers on linux. On the other side of the coin, I'm not sure how useful this will actually be for current linux fans. Almost all valve games have gold or platnum wineHQ ratings, as do a huge portion of games on steam. Running steam on wine I can play left4dead, half life, portal 1+2, magika etc... As well as quite a few non-valve games, Skyrim etc... Now assuming valve fully devotes to the project and makes native linux versions of all of their games, it is unlikely that half of the games that can be played via wine, will be ported, making the official linux client, less useful than valves port. As a result many linux users will still be identified as windows users (since wine will identify as windows XP), the numbers for linux will still show as low, and linux support will stay very weak.

Wine is fairly simple to detect on Valve's end, at least as far as the hardware survey goes -- Wine will, for instance, report its audio drivers as something unique to Wine users. In the past Valve even shared hardware survey data about the percentage of Wine users on the Wine mailing list (something like 0.4%, but this was maybe 4 years ago). Unfortunately at one point in the recent past Wine started crashing during the hardware survey. While this bug has been fixed it's quite possible Linux users have learned to not accept the survey and are thus systematically under-counted.

Comment Re:32-bit desktop still "recommended" (Score 1) 543

I'm surprised that they still recommend 32-bit for desktop instead of 64. Programs probably just not quite ready for LTS on 64, but disappointing nonetheless.

We debated making 64-bit the recommended download this cycle, since now with multiarch there's no reason not to use it these days, but then we discovered that fully 25% of our hardware-survey respondents had machines that were not capable of running 64-bit. Having a few users with modern computers who don't know what 64-bit is end up using the 32-bit is less bad of a problem than recommending a good chunk of users try to download something uninstallable.


Selling Incandescent Light Bulbs As Heating Devices 557

Csiko writes "The European Union has banned by law trading of incandescent light bulbs due to their bad efficiency/ecology (most of the energy is transformed into heat). A company is now trying to bypass this restriction by offering their incandescent light bulb products as a heating device (article in German) instead of a light device. Still, their 'heat balls' give light as well as heating. So — every law can be bypassed if you have some creativity!"

In Case of Emergency, Please Remove Your Bra 123

An anonymous reader writes "Caught in a disaster with harmful airborne particles? You'd better hope you're wearing the Emergency Bra. Simply unsnap the bright red bra, separate the cups, and slip it over your head — one cup for you, and one for your friend. Dr. Elena Bodnar won an Ig Nobel Award for the invention last year, an annual tribute to scientific research that on the surface seems goofy but is often surprisingly practical. And now Bodnar has brought the eBra to the public; purchase one online for just $29.95."

Girl Quits On Dry Erase Board a Hoax 147

suraj.sun writes "It's the same old story: young woman quits, uses dry erase board and series of pictures to let entire office know the boss is a sexist pig, exposes his love of playing FarmVille during work hours." Story seem too good to be true? It probably is, at least according to writer Peter Kafka. Even so, Jay Leno and Good Morning America have already reached out to "Jenny."
First Person Shooters (Games)

Gamer Plays Doom For the First Time 362

sfraggle writes "Kotaku has an interesting review of Doom (the original!) by Stephen Totilo, a gamer and FPS player who, until a few days ago, had gone through the game's 17-year history without playing it. He describes some of his first impressions, the surprises that he encountered, and how the game compares to modern FPSes. Quoting: 'Virtual shotgun armed, I was finally going to play Doom for real. A second later, I understood the allure the video game weapon has had. In Doom the shotgun feels mighty, at least partially I believe because they make first-timers like me wait for it. The creators make us sweat until we have it in hand. But once we have the shotgun, its big shots and its slow, fetishized reload are the floored-accelerator-pedal stuff of macho fantasy. The shotgun is, in all senses, instant puberty, which is to say, delicately, that to obtain it is to have the assumed added potency that a boy believes a man possesses vis a vis a world on which he'd like to have some impact. The shotgun is the punch in the face the once-scrawny boy on the beach gives the bully when he returns a muscled linebacker.'"

Comment Re:Make the switch from Dual Booting (Score 1) 427

Well, after my initial problems with Vent I found Mangler and decided to give it a shot. I spent a couple hours trying to get it to even install, then decided figuring out my problems with Wine would be easier. Which it was.

If you were using Ubuntu it would be as simple as going to the Mangler PPA and copying the lines it shows into Software Sources. Granted, that's still more work than it should be - it should just be in Software Center in the first place.

Comment Re:Are IE 7 or 8 useable? (Score 2, Informative) 427

Google ies4linux... It's a bundle of wine designed specifically to run various versions of ie. That said, can't you move to another bank? all the banks i've used here work fine with both safari and firefox (havent tried accessing them from anything else).

Don't do this, the correct way to run IE these days is to get winetricks and run it, then tick the box for either ie6 or ie7, and then run it with "wine iexplore"

Comment Re:Make the switch from Dual Booting (Score 1) 427

No idea about Steam, but I used to use Vent for WoW on wine without too many problems. Took a while to configure it properly, but it was more a problem of configuring audio on Wine than configuring audio for Vent (i.e. audio wasn't working for any apps). The fact that I have several soundcards didn't help...

I've experimented with this and I highly recommend just using Mangler (a native app) instead. On Ubuntu there's a PPA you can add to get it in Lucid -- I'll try and integrate it to the distro so we get it in 10.10 without going through an extra step.

Comment Re:Every windows application (Score 2, Interesting) 427

I think Wine needs a usability team. Some kind of gui/tooling to make things easier for newbies to Wine.

That is exactly why Codeweavers makes money. And it is not even that expensive ...

Yeah it's basically me and the Vineyard author working on Wine usability at this point (Hopefully I can get Vineyard more or less finalized for inclusion in Ubuntu 10.10)

Comment Re:1.2 already? (Score 1) 427

Wow, brings memories of the pre-1.0 phase. Do you remember when only the most basic apps would run in WINE and required a lot of tweaking? Nowadays I can run most apps but Game Maker (Like Hydorah, Spelunky, etc) based games. Even painting and music apps, or games like Touhou or other doujin arcade games work practically out of the box (mostly requiring directx 9 runtimes). I don't play much mainstream, but I have been satisfied with my indie/arcade gaming needs and WINE.
This is only going to get better with time, and I am kind of happy about it. Years ago I had to use virtualbox or use my laptop to run simplistic apps reliably, and it's not the case anymore (in my use case at least, you know, generalizing, anecdotal evidence, your mileage may vary, etc)

Spelunky should work now, I specifically remember testing it a few months ago when I was rolling out packages and people kept pestering me about that game.


Wine 1.2 Released 427

David Gerard writes "Stuck with that one Windows app you can't get rid of? Rejoice — Wine 1.2 is officially released! Apart from running pretty much any Windows application on Unix better than 1.0 (from 2008), major new features include 64-bit support, bi-directional text, and translation into thirty languages. And, of course, DirectX 9 is well-supported and DirectX 10 is getting better. Packages should hit the distros over the weekend, or you can get the source now."
PlayStation (Games)

US Air Force To Suffer From PS3 Update 349

tlhIngan writes "The US Air Force, having purchased PS3s for supercomputing research, is now the latest victim of Sony's removal of the Install Other OS feature. It turns out that while their PS3s don't need the firmware update, it will be impossible to replace PS3s that fail. PS3s with the Other OS feature are no longer produced since the Slim was introduced, so replacements will have to come from the existing stock of used PS3s. However, as most gamers have probably updated their PS3s, that used stock is no longer suitable for the USAF's research. In addition, smaller educational clusters using PS3s will share the same fate — unable to replace machines that die in their clusters." In related news, Sony has been hit with two more lawsuits over this issue.

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