Dropbox

If you use multiple computers, you have to check out DropBox. It hooks into your file-manager (Linux, Windows, Mac) and gives you a special folder that’s synced to all of your machines as well as being accessible via the web (both authenticated and a “Public” folder.) If you’re even mildly interested they have a great demo video on the link above.

If you have your own web hosting, I saw a great tip on the Planet GNOME feed for setting up a URL that’s easier to remember than the one DropBox gives you.

If you’re running Linux, it’s also possible to use DropBox with no file-manager or GUI of any kind. (Also seen on Planet GNOME.)

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.

WTB free good project software

In my old blog I hinted about a project that I’d been working on and was hoping to release. It’s getting closer to release, so Happy and I spent part of the day looking at “project” software. That’s some crappy nomenclature, but I lack a better term. I’m referring to software like Trac, Redmine, Jira, etc. Something that does issue tracking, maybe a wiki, maybe some forums and maybe some VCS integration.

Trac is out because it’s just awful. Puppet used to use it and I hated every second of it. It was hard to use, but moreover it was hard to read. Issues/Tickets/Bugs/Whatever looked terrible. Oh and the wiki syntax sucked too.

We tried Redmine today and being the ruby noobs that we are, it wasn’t exactly easy to get going. There’s a bug in the release version when using the version of ruby we had and coupled with a few other things that made me feel like it’d be fragile (which is another way of saying I wasn’t sure I was qualified to run it in production.)

Then in the last 10 minutes of the day we tried Jira and holy smokes! For a project our size this thing is enormous overkill. It’s also payware. They have an “open source” license, but the main qualifier to get said license seems to be “being cool enough.” Plus, I fucking despise java. That said, it’s quite a polished package and was amazingly easy to set up. It’s certainly far better than then issue tracking system my work is about to deploy.

So at this point I’m looking over wikipedia’s big comparison chart, but I’ve lost hope and am starting to think that we’ll just end up using smaller pieces rather than an all-in-one solution. For the first time in my approximately ten years of blogging I’m allowing people to comment on my blog! Why not make a suggestion of the kickass project software you use/wrote/love?