Monthly Archives: March 2012

Free software, come and get your free software…

Hands up how many of you use Open Source  (I’ve got my hand up high just for visual reference). OK, how many of you who don’t use it… hands up if you don’t use it because you think its buggy or not fully featured? Now; I’m betting that 50% of those of you who don’t use open source have your hands up.

Now; the thing is that yes there will be bugs in open source software; but I can bet percentage wise is only as many as in commercial software and maybe possibly less. Reason I say that is I have worked as a Software Engineer for some BIG companies and know the number of bugs caught by customers – and these are million pound systems.

So, what I mean to say is that in actual fact you will probably only find as many bugs in a open source software item as in a commercial released.

It is true though that some open source software may not be as feature rich as commercial because they don’t have a full time dedicated team working on them.That said though, in most cases those extra’s may not be worth the price you pay for them. I mean; take for consideration something like KDENLive as a prime example. This is an excellent open source video editor program that has many more and better features than some of the lower, cheaper end commercial editors. Only the Pro editors really have much better features.

There are also many open source programs out there that do things there are now commercial equivalents for. You want office, you can get it, you want password crackers…

Games.. office suites, video editors.. there is an endless list, far many to keep going on about. Go check a few out – go do a search on and save yourself some money in this expensive time we live in..

Youtube mobile view bot hack fixed, but do we think this will be the end of it?

So, it seems, in the last few days YouTube; after a few weeks or working on the issue; have released a fix into the system to stop the rampant mobile views bot hack that has put lots of videos to the most viewed status.

Of late we have seen many videos suddenly appear on the most viewed list with millions of views in just one day an all from a mobile device. This hack/bot has removed videos that should have been there through hard work and instead we’ve been seeing boring, crap, and otherwise none entertaining videos instead.

I make videos.. check out TheGeekFiles Channel

which is my YouTube channel. I mainly do software (and sometimes hardware) reviews but do have other things also. Now I don’t get lots of views, though do have enough, but all mine are hard work. Yes it would be great to get more.. It would also be great to get my Adsense turned back on after some invalid clicks a year and half ago (not my doing). But I don’t abandon, I push forward 🙂

But my message is really that this is a good thing. However, do I think this will stop botting on YouTube? No! I am sure there will be more bots, more invalid views although maybe not up to the extent of the mobile views hack. But who knows. What does everyone else thing?

By the way, more Linux stuff coming soon.

With the current economy; is the way forward Open Source and Linux?

Just to give some background on my experience first. I first used linux back in 1994 and for many years got the slackware distribution. I remember the first distribution I got (not sure if was slackware also) I downloaded onto about 95 HD floppy disks.. Good thing was that I was at Uni at the time so wasn’t a dial up 🙂

I then got the first CD distribution Yggdrasil Linux again back in late 95 or so. I still have the CD box somewhere around in my cupboard draws.

Now… Back in those days installation of linux was difficult. You could sit for hours choosing the components you wanted to install then a few more hours recompiling kernals, etc. I was truly only for the tech community. I know I loved it but at the same time trying to get my ethernet network running bugged me for a while. And I had a script (from Pipex) to connect to my dial up with an awk script to kill once finished. That all said; it run so lovely compared to windows and there were some open source stuff to play with.

Fast forward to today and current misconceptions some have. I think first misconception is that Linux is still very difficult to install. This is no longer true, in fact in my thoughts its easier to install.. So, for anyone that has not tried. First thing you do is download the iso file and burn to a disk. Second thing is boot from disk (like you would if doing a windows install). Choose partition, etc (again exactly same stuff as if doing windows install) then click go. In some cases you may need to choose an install profile like gamer, developer, etc but this is just so as it pre-installs extra software.

So, what is that easier? Well; on install it basically installs your drivers etc. OK windows does that to.. but I have found on some older systems that windows will not install some drivers (specifically in one case the wifi drivers) and linux did. Install of linux just worked.

So, install is free. Install is easy and setup is a breeze. Infact using something like grub it will even setup your dual boot. There are even newer linux installs (like Ubuntu) that will install in windows as an application.

So, open source software. What is it? Well; to keep it simple its free software.Free?? Yes, there is no cost to pay – you simply download and install. Infact for a lot of it its made simple in that most distros of linux include an installer you run, search for software, click install and it downloads and installs.

“Ah, but does open source mean buggy software” you ask. In most cases no because there are more developers in most cases working on open source software than commercial (this is coming from my experience as a commercial developer).

“but what can I get” is your next question. Virtually anything. You want video edit software, kdenlive as an example. Games? Yes tons of them. Office products. yes. Yes, yes yes for your next lot. You would be surprised if never looked at what open source as to offer.

So, free OS. Free software. Why would you look at Windows? Well only if intended to play games. But then again check out Crossover for Linux by Codeweavers. Or even Wine for linux if want something to run windows applications for free.

The debate continues.. but spending less may mean better support for Linux and Open Source…

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