I’m moving this blog to Blogger.com (a Google blogging service). The new web address is http://berdai.blogspot.com/

In which I will blog about diverse subjects and interests with Free Software getting the biggest share.

However, I wanted to blog about more specific Free Software subjects this is why I’m glad to announce my 2nd new blog http://practicalfoss.blogspot.com/ in which I will target practical use Free Software and how to make the most out of it.

The 3rd blog http://arabicfoss.blogspot.com/ is going to focus on introducing Free Software to the Arabic speaking community.

Finally, this blog is going to stay online as long as wordpress.com will allow; however, it will not be updated with new articles though I’ll keep an eye on your comments ;)

Happy Blogging to all

I take it upon myself to find answers. I’m always looking for, reading, understanding and learning new things. I can’t stop theorizing, testing and adjusting concepts to realistic and concrete needs/requirements. I take my personal development process (PDP) seriously.

And through this life endeavor (PDP), I’ve learned to take nothing for granted. To assume nothing. I’m sorry but most of what we were taught as truth is proved to be manipulated information. But that’s another topic.

I’m passionate about Free Software Movement. I respect any movement that stand for supporting freedom. To me everyone is free to choose, think, decide, act and behave in a free and accountable way. Not a careless or irresponsible way.

I thank anyone who had made any effort no matter how small it’s to support, maintain and develop FOSS.

However, Through my FOSS journey, I notice things that are unpleasant which are most of the time due to unthoughtful decisions.

And sometimes you find some great work that goes unnoticed within the community.

So, I decided to start two separate type of articles.

  1. The first one is going to be branded “I’m Sorry, But” for the things that need attention
  2. The second type is going to be branded “Kudos to ” thanking the effort done.

Last week I was amazed to see a Mozilla’s concept of the future web browser and human interaction with it. It’s called Aurora, you can watch these videos Part I, Part II, Part III, Part IV, to understand the concept.

About a year ago, I explained to some of my friends a concept like Aurora, which I’ve called Natural Communication. I’ve already given some hints about it here.

Natural Communication is all about moving human interaction with information to the next level, to a more naturally way of memorizing and recalling things.

Hopefully, I’ll present more details about the concept in the upcoming weeks.

Finally, after testing, using and experimenting with dozens of GNU/Linux distributions during the last 4 years, I’ve found my ultimate distro of choice. It’s ArchLinux. I’ve never been so happy to be a GNU/Linux user as today.

ArchLinux, is exactly what I was looking for. I’m strong believer in the concept of rolling updates because I think it’s the best way for GNU/Linux to take on in the Desktop usage.

Out of many GNU/Linux Distro I’ve tried, only two caught my interest. ArchLinux followed by PCLinuxOS. The only difference between them is that PCLinuxOS is more easy to install while ArchLinux is more easy to maintain. As a result ArchLinux has more recent packages than PCLinuxOS.

Another great thing about ArchLinux is the quality of its documentation. It’s excellent, everything is detailed and simple to follow.

And I’ve never seen any full-fledged GNU/Linux distro running so fast as ArchLinux. That’s because it’s not bloated with useless apps, the user chooses what to install and what not, and because its packages are optimized for i686.

ArchLinux Community plays an important role in providing help and maintaining AUR packages. I can confidently say that ArchLinux Community is a remarkable and vibrant one.

So far, I’ve had only one issue with it. My DVD recorder couldn’t burn above 2x which was due SATA Kernel module. It’s needless to say that not only I was able to fix the issue in a few moments but the way ArchLinux reconfigured the Kernel was lightning fast.

All I can say is Kudos to ArchLinux members and to ArchLinux Community. Really, a Big Thank You to everyone.

Now, I can focus on doing my work instead of fighting with my OS.

I used to be a Windows geek. I hear you laughing :-D

I used to do my own unattended Windows XP install CD, which was a Linux-like in terms of pre-installed softwares; and which I used whenever I wanted to install my own PC.

I personalized everything in my Windows XP. And since at those days I was a Borland Delphi fan I decided to develop a software to manage Windows XP themes, logon and boot screens. The first version was hosted at FreeWebs, you can still find it here and here (By the way, I hated to use DreamWeaver or Frontpage)

After a year or so from the first release, I decided to enhance it and release it under a FOSS license. You can have a look at the project web site here, or if you want to try it you can download it from here. Thanks again to SourceForge.

Actually, I’ve received a lot positive feedback about it. And many asked for more features. However, I’ve promised myself that If I’m going to develop anything else I will use only Free Software tools to do any kind of software. (Qt + Python are way beyond anything I’ve seen in the proprietary development tools)

throughout my experience with Debian Sid (nearly a year now), at least I had three show-stoppers. One was a serious package management conflict that required manual hacks to solve. The second one was a complex Xorg breakage that required 2 hours of work to fix. and the last one was yesterday when I was unable to bootup the new installed kernel 2.6.26-1-686

Here is nice screenshot for those who have never seen Linux kernel crash. It’s rare to happen. In 4 years, I’ve only seen it once and it was due to hardware failure.

I’m not going to be defensive, but the Kernel crash you are going to see has nothing to do with the quality of the Kernel itself but it shows what can happen when distro maintainers start to mess with things :)

Although it’s a little bit late to blog about Mozilla Firefox v3.0, I’ll do it anyway. I’ve read some good feedback about it and personally I found to be good. Mozilla has improved many things under the hood: better web standards support, better security and lots of improvements here and there.

I can tell that this new release really do have memory management improvements. There is no frequent sky-rocketing memory consumption when watching Flash videos or visiting web sites with JScript memory leaks. They have really done a good job.

Also, I can confidently say that Mozilla is making Firefox not just a simple Web browser but a platform that is going to have it remarkable share in future software development (either applications relying on it as a core/engine, or web applications).

My only two remarks about it are :

1) The newly introduced Awesome Bar still need improvements, it can be overwhelming to those who have large web browser history. I’ve found that Opera 9.51 has implemented it better than Firefox 3.0; and to those who prefer the old style, they can install OldBar and have a bar similar to Firefox 2.0.

2) Bookmarks. Although Firefox 3.0 use Sqlite as a back-end to manage bookmarks, I’ve noticed browser freezing when I try to access my bookmarks. Some may not notice it but I’ve a large Database of bookmarks (~9Mb html db file). Another thing is that when I try to add a new bookmark in a new folder, either the newly added folder don’t show up in bookmarks tree or the bookmark dialog stops responding to mouse clicks. Also, I’ve found that Firefox 2.0 provides more flexibility in handling bookmarks especially drag-and-drop operations.

Actually, I’ve both Firefox 3.0 and Firefox 2.0 installed. I use only v2.0 for my daily activities. I’ll probably move to Firefox 3.1 when it get released next year.

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