Free and open source is how I like my applications. The latest Mac OS X only application PandoraBoy brings the joys of the popular streaming music site to your desktop. Its still a work in progress but is pretty slick and for all you lovers of desktop applications, this is definitely manna from heaven !
This shouldn’t be news to anyone but when Gartner says in a report that the Windows Ecosystem is collapsing, I’m sure a lot of us would be willing to give them a thought. Granted, companies like Gartner thrive on tall claims to drive up their business but even I wouldn’t agree more with them on this one.
While I certainly do not think that Windows is “collapsing” but a gradual decline in the number of windows users and developers cannot be ignored. From the world’s most used and loved operating system, Windows is now just another statistic on the analysts’ radar. Mac OS X and Linux are formidable forces in the Operating system world and analysts are actually sitting up and taking notice of them.
The Vista debacle should have taught MS a lot of things but I doubt that they’re willing to learn anything from it. Consumers want more out of their computing machines these days and just a couple of fancy graphical effects are not going to sway them. They would rather have a working, stable operating system than change to a newer buggier one which also requires them to upgrade most of their hardware.
Microsoft on its part is signing up deals with open source companies like Novell. It released the SP 3 version of its best seller operating system Windows XP last week and even though XP will still be EOLed in June, MS has been working with some organisations like Asus who want to keep using XP on their low cost/low power computing devices. Gartner says that Windows is bloated, overly complex and full of useless functionality and that users who aren’t forced to upgrade by way of OEM deals, would rather stick to what they have.
The big daddy of Mac OS X IM clients, Adium, is adding facebook chat support to its already humongous list of protocol support. This was mentioned over at the Adium blog yesterday. No word on when the next release is going to be out, but till then, keep your eyes on the blog. Another reason for all you teeny bopper facebook fans to switch 🙂
If you had any doubts about the potential of the iPhone as a gaming platform, you should put them to rest now. Raging Thunder is a new 3D game which uses the accelerometer to steer a car and uses openGL for the graphics. The graphics, btw, are pretty sleek and even though the games’s not perfect yet, we’re not complaining. Now, if only the car would stop steering so dramatically with the slightest movement of the iPhone, I would probably be able to complete some more laps. Nonetheless, I should add, Gentlemen fire your installer.apps and try this wonderful addition to the world of iPhone gaming.
Our journey to Leh was finally coming to an end and none of us were in the mood to go back to civilisation. I wish we could have stayed there for a couple of more months, if not days. We had to get petrol filled in the bikes and so there was no point getting up early and then wait for the gas station to open. We slept well, got up, got ready, tied up our bikes and went to get fuel filled. Pandey and Akhilesh were late as usual and we told them that we’ll meet them at the gas station.
They were taking a long time and we got tired of waiting for them and so we called them and told them to reach the pathar sahab gurudwara that we were supposed to stop at. Pathar sahab is about 30 kms from Leh and is believed to be the place where guru nanak meditated while in Leh. A demon had thrown a big rock on the guru from a nearby hill while the guru was meditating. The rock on touching the guru melted and the shape of the guru’s back can still be seen embedded in the rock at the gurudwara. The place is now maintained by the Indian Army.
I’m back from my short trip to Bangkok, Thailand. We stayed at the Abloom serviced apartments and had a wonderful stay. I’ll be posting some tidbits from my trip over the next couple of days. Hang on.
A trip to the highest motorable road in the world. This is what we had been riding the last 9 days for. Granted Pangong Tso was spectacular and offered a much better view, but you can’t take the brownie points away from a ride like todays.
Apjoo had taken permits for the Nubra valley for all of us and most of the group was actually planning to spend the night at hunder or diksit after crossing over Khardung La. I wasn’t too interested and wanted a rest day for myself. It had been raining the whole of yesterday and last night was also pretty cold. But we didn’t realise that it could have snowed at Khardung La and because everyone else wanted to go further to Nubra, we all started early. Which was a bad thing ! It was freakin’ cold and within a few kms of the ascent to K’La, we had to stop and warm our hands on the bike’s engine. The gloves were of no use at all.
Another excellent post by Sharninder on Ubuntu and why it isn’t ready for the masses yet.
“To put things into perspective, I am a fairly advanced Linux user, having started using Linux around 10 years back. I started with RedHat, moved on to Slackware, Redhat again, Fedora, Debian (stabl and sid) and finally Ubuntu. Since I don’t live on Mars, I still have had to use Windows occasionally. I started with Windows 3.0, moved to 3.1, NT, Windows 95, 98 (or whatever they called it), ME, 2000 and XP and probably used some other versions in between. I have also owned (used to … until the motherboard failed on me after three years of hard usage) an Apple iBook running Mac OS X.3 and later on X.4. I use an iMac running X.5 at work and dabble a bit in freeBSD and Solaris from time to time. Phew !”
He then goes on to give an example from his usage of Ubuntu.
“All this time, I’ve been running Mac OS X on my iBook and using that as my primary machine at home connected to my WPA2 WIFI network. One fine day the thought of ditching OS X came to my mind and I installed Ubuntu on this laptop. Dual boot, of course since I wasn’t ready to give up on OS X just yet. I spent about 20 minutes installing Ubuntu, so far so good. And then I spent the next two days trying to make it work with my wifi network. I did get WPA2 working with it, but then an ubuntu update came through the wire and all hell broke lose ! I was without wifi access again. I would have again spent the next two days configuring wifi on my notebook if canonical hadn’t decided to take away Ubuntu’s support for powerpc machines and so I ditched ubuntu and installed Debian … for a day. The very thought of spending another two days to get networking working again on this thing put me off it. As you might have noticed, I don’t take notes … never needed to and probably never will. I was back to OS X on my beautiful white notebook and life was good all again. Never had a problem with OS X on this machine.”
Must read article.
Trolltech has announced the immediate availability of QT 4.4, the cross platform GUI toolkit available for Windows, Linux, Mac OS X and now Windows CE and Windows Mobile also. The exciting new features include Webkit based HTML rendering engine, the new Phonon multimedia framework and of course the ability to run on windows CE and Windows mobile. arstechnica has an in-depth article on the new release.
Sharninder has an interesting post going by the title of “iPhone SDK and the aftermath”. Sharninder analyses the release of the SDK and the developer communities response to it.
“Apple has decreed that all iPhone applications will be sold via the iTunes store and that the developers will not be able to host their applications themselves. Further, to post applications to the iTunes store, the developers have the pay a one time charge of $99 and if they do manage to sell any apps, they will have to give 30% of their income to Apple. This 30% charge, apple claims, goes towards maintaining the web presence, hosting their applications and the credit card transaction charges. Apple also gets to approve the applications before they can be sold on iTunes. Apple has also stated that they will not allow VOIP applications on the cellular network but will allow VOIP while on WIFI.”
For the complete post go to Sharninder’s blog.