Operating system

Pidgin features a Facebook chat plugin

For those of you who want to access their Facebook chat without a browser, Pidgin now features a plugin for that.

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Will Android be the homerun OS of the year 2010?

It took time for phone builders to realize that they would made big saving by adopting Android instead of reinventing the wheel with their own OS. Android has been around for a couple of years now, but it is finally gaining momentum: a dozen device are expected within the next 6 months, so the OS ever-broad user base might create enough momentum to convince developpers to embrace it.

As for Microsoft, Windows Mobile has recently been released, and I read that it still requires a stylus. I rest my case.

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Got a Mac

On my personal home computer I permanently switched from Windows to Linux in 2001. The latest Ubuntu GNU/Linux distribution automatically updates itself and allows to do all the mundane stuff like handling electronic mail, surfing the internet, viewing and editing text or spreadsheet documents.

There are outstanding free applications allowing me to create and retouch high-colour graphics, rip and apply audio filters to songs, manage and hand-edit my music and photographic library, and securely store all my critical data. The X Windows System allows to place applications windows in any of its multiple screens and keeping a movies window on all screens on top of all applications.

Linux is good and I love Open Source. My only dissapointment however is the difficulty of setting up and flawlessly running multimedia (music or video) composition software. There is also a file management system issue: since the file and folder owner alone has write priviledge, I have often found myself unable to write files on a wearable Linux device’s memory card. For example I cannot place files on my HTC memory card under Linux. I need to resort to Windows or OSX to do that.

Which is why I pondered wether to get a Mac mini and I eventually ended up doing it.

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One of the reasons why I love Open Source

One of the facts that made me decide to get an android phone was the availability of KeePass, an open-source encrypted database software that allows to securely keep all critical password and numbers at hand.

Brian Pellin  is the volunteer software developer who singlehandedly compiled and maintains KeePassDroid, the android version of KeePass. Being an industrial designer, and having a long experience in graphic design, I contacted Brian on July 12th 2009 to offer some assistance. He replied within 24 hours and I got back to him with an android-specific launcher icon for KeePassDroid, and a few suggestions for fine-tuning the user interface.

What do you know? Three days later Brian was already publishing an upgrade to the software, featuring the GLP’ed launcher icon and the interface tweaks. Now where else do you find software that implements user feedback so fast? Two thumbs up for Brian Pellin and Open Source!

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android and iPhone vulnerability compared

Kenneth Van Wyk wrote an article for itmanagement.earthweb.com in which he tried to assess the level of vulnerability of Google android and Apple Inc. iPhone OS.

I’m going to go out on a limb here and predict Google’s Android mobile phone platform is going to prove itself to be more secure than Apple’s iPhone in the long run.

Go to the article.

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