Dom's State of the Ubuntu Address

Hello again. I'm back, and this time for good.

Let me tell you what happened: I somehow had this bright idea of automating my posts to this blog. Not exactly splogging or scraping, though embarrassingly something close to that. I put together a little hack with gData, Python, and MySQL, and for a while I thought it was pretty nifty. just didn't have the right feel to it. So I gave it up, eventually, but along the way, I was so filled with distaste I neglected this blog.

So anyway, I'm back. And no more of that scraping stuff. Just good old content.

When I last left off, I was using Ubuntu 7.04 on both my desktop and my IBM Thinkpad. I was pretty determined to keep it at that version level. Updating every six months can be a real drag. Now my Thinkpad is still running Feisty Fawn, and I'm still pretty happy with it. However, my desktop hard disk crashed, and that gave me good reason to move up to Gutsy Gibbon. I've also bought a new desktop for the secretary of my new business to use and she's happily using Gibbon.

For a while, I was pretty impressed with the eye candy for 7.10, but only for a while. I eventually decided to turn it off because it really didn't add anything to my productivity. On top of that, it was just eating up the CPU cycles. Worse, I actually had trouble with Abiword and Gnumeric with Beryl on.

I've bought a new printer, an Epson C90 (or D92, if you're outside the Philippines). It works perfectly with 7.10 and I am extremely happy. I had been eyeing it for some time but when I first tested it with 7.04, there were some snags and so that's why I put off buying it. When my old HP inkjet ran out of ink for the umpteenth time, I finally decided to chance it with the C90. When the time comes, I'm going to have it converted into a Continuous Ink Supply. More on this printer in a later post.

I've also been ripping DVDs using K9copy. Not for any nefarious purpose, mind you, but for my English Literature class. I have to pull out some film clips from a movie and the best way was to convert to AVI. Fair use, I say!

Lately, I've discovered a nifty trick: I downloaded some videos from Youtube and converted them to VCD. This was for a politically charged documentary that my Mom wanted to see but whose airdate she missed. Fortunately, the episode was still on Youtube. More on this trick in a future post.

Finally, not strictly Ubuntu related but I thought I'd post it anyway: I am now using ScribeFire for posting and I've just recently discovered Zotero. The Blogger web client has been atrociously slow the past few weeks so that it's actually impossible to write anything anymore. It must be because of all the heavy Javascript the've added into it. ScribeFire makes things so much manageable. And Zotero? Well, Zotero is just da bomb. I love it.

More in the coming days!