sheesh

I make blogging too hard. I always think I have to be writing something important and that’s just untrue. So here’s a small collection of thoughts since I last blogged.

Yaketystats 2.1 is out. I feel like we’re floundering exposure-wise. I really think we have the best product out there, but no one seems to care. We’ve talked about writing an article for a Linux mag and doing an OSCON presentation, so maybe that’ll help.

Firefox in Ubuntu has been driving me crazy for the last several months. My work machine is an 4CPU 8G atom-smasher and FF is still crazy slow. Like you’d laugh and ask “how is that possible?” slow. I don’t have many extensions, and it seems like my box should be able to handle tons of extensions, but I regularly find myself waiting several seconds for a new tab to be usable and I’m always waiting for text boxes to catch up to my typing. It sucks.

I’m also really frustrated with Ubuntu in general. Coming from Debian where in-place upgrades are the norm, it’s really weird and sad to read that reinstalling come upgrade time is the norm in Ubuntu culture. Sure you can upgrade in place, but it’s fraught with peril and things often don’t work right. For instance, I finally got my laptop wireless working in 8.04, but it didn’t survive the upgrade to 8.10 and I can’t make it work at all now, so I’m living in Vista. Don’t get me started on Vista.

There are a lot of cultural things about Ubuntu that just rub me the wrong way. I guess I’m getting old. As much as they do to make it all work together and feel cohesive, to me it feels very tenuous and fragile. If NetworkManager (for example) doesn’t work for you, well sorry, you’re just fucked because that’s the Ubuntu way to do it and you’ll be swimming upstream the rest of your Ubuntu-life if you try to do it another way. PulseAudio is another example of this.

BTW, when did “for example” cease to mean anything? It’s like banner-ad blindness; people don’t even hear it anymore and immediately start arguing the details of your example ignoring the point you were trying to make by using the example. It’s one thing to say “Well, I see the point you’re trying to make, but I don’t think your example supports your point and here’s why,” but that’s not what I’m talking about. I’m talking about “Oh, since you brought up X, let’s argue about that now and I’ll completely ignore any point you were trying to make when you brought X up.”

I started twittering but I don’t expect it to last. Having not grown up with Twitter, it seems like they make finding your friends overly difficult. Searching by invite/email address? Really?

I recently bought a Greg Bailey Custom guitar. The guitar used as his horrid background image, in fact. It plays and sounds great. It’s the second aluminum instrument I own and is very very different than my Travis Bean. Maybe I’ll put some experiments with my new ElectroHarmonix Hog on youtube sometime. The Hog is an extremely fun device.

I wish I could find an acoustic that’s as nice as my Travis Bean. I’ve got a $2k Taylor. After a few years it’s not holding up very well and my initial annoyances with it are only magnified now. I got really lucky in that I have a friend who owned a Bean enabling me to find out how fantastic they are. I lack friends with kickass acoustic guitars (vintage or otherwise) so it’s hard to even know what’s out there and what I’d like. Acoustic guitar shops are usually far too uptight for me. It’s almost as if you’re supposed to buy the guitars w/o playing them.

I’m reading Steve Pinker’s The Blank Slate and enjoying it very much. It’s one of those books that really makes you examine yourself and your dogma. In some ways, though, it’s a bit of a motivation killer. I have enough problems with motivation/feeling like part of the machine/etc without feeling like my identity isn’t even cohesive. :)

I guess that’s as good a thought as any to leave on. UNTIL NEXT TIME!

Chrome

So Google’s launching a new browser called Chrome. It’s based off WebKit which is Apple’s re-do of KHTML which is the HTML rendering engine created for Konqueror, the KDE browser.

If the post is to be believed, it promises to be extremely cool, especially for people with multiple CPUs. The sand-boxing and new javascript engine also sound like big improvements. Too bad it’s windows only for now and hopefully it won’t be one of the many “pay no attention to the evil behind the curtain” Google offerings. The fact that its open source, doesn’t mean that they’ll accept anything from the community, either. We’ll see, I guess.

I also wonder how well a new browser will fare. Opera’s had arguably the best browser out there for years, but no one really cares (including me) even now that it’s free. In one way I’m surprised at Safari’s success, but then it’s less surprising considering the “do what you’re told” mindset of the cult of mac. IIRC, there’s a windows version of Safari, but I don’t know of anyone who uses it nor how well it’s doing.

The competition will hopefully spur innovation and help the browser that I’ve come to like even if I don’t end up using Chrome.