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Archive for January, 2007

Digg, Slashdot and Maturity

The Digg front page
My two stories at the very top of Digg.com (click for full-sized image)

DIGG has possibly made a mistake by opening its doors to a wider crowd by augmenting its sections and encouraging short and lame postings. I was at times modded down because my comments were “too long”.

A friend of mine tends to agree that Digg was much better over a year ago. Even Slashdot is orders of magnitude more mature than Digg nowadays. Slashdot’s trolls have moved elsewhere and someone must ‘absorb’ them. Also, Digg is increasingly becoming people’s blog aggregator (just seen someone submitting 10 links to his blog in one day). This lowers the overall quality and raises ‘noise’ level. Maybe Digg is a victim of its own traffic-generating reputation, as well as ‘democratic’ nature (making it possible for inaccurate news to hit key pages).

The True Market Share of Linux

Ubuntu Linux

My machine at an older office. It
ran Ubuntu Linux (see daily photolog)

SOME would argue that the ‘market share’ of Linux has long ago exceeded 4%. Installed based, as opposed to market share, is difficult to gauge. People install Linux as they download or pass CD’s around. They do not buy Linux because Microsoft has a chokehold on OEM’s (AKA ‘Windows tax’, c/f 1, 2, 3). It’s a strategic, anti-competitive tactic.

Web statistics studies are still biased because they usually exclude Linux sites, they throw away “unknown” (often Linux with diverse http-header footprint/string), they ignore Squid, they don’t account for agent forgers (not just for MISE-only sites), and they neglect to account all the traffic that comes from Windows zombies (Windows/IE). In short, they cannot be relied on.

What is the true ‘market share’ of Linux then? There is no way of knowing. Software that is passed from hand tom hand or gets downloaded remains quiet and obscure. But the truth is out there. One just needs to sweep away disinformation which is enforced by companies that have plenty in stake. One of my Web sites, which boasts over 1,000 visits a day, indicates that Linux has a market share of over 40%. It’s not a typical and mainstream site. But will Web survey ever wish to include such a site in a survey? Who will ‘sponsor’ Freedom and encourage outing of the truth? Studies are typically backed and funded by commercial bodies which select their desired hypothesis and fit the conclusions to it, by carefully choosing the methods and data.

Take everything with a large barrel of salt. Just some thoughts to ponder…

Ray Ozzie on Novell Acquisition of XenSource?

SuSE Linux beta, KDE

RAY Ozzie has just revealed one of Microsoft’s fruits from its deal with Novell. The authenticity, however, is yet subjected to doubt. On the face of it, Novell is set to acquire XenSoruce. From the ongoing discussions: ‘They (Novell) will release a new ZENworks Q1 for application virtualization on Windows and Suse. Novell also has the only reliable Identity Management, and Directory that scales the Enterprise… Also consider that if Microsoft purchased XenSource directly then VMWare and the other virtualization vendors would rightly scream “Antitrust”‘.

I tried to submit this gossip/scoop to Slashdot and I await the response. Indeed, as I would not deny, this is one of the reused Slashdot submission-type blog items. I use my personal blog as a ‘safety net’, so to speak. I also had to resubmit this because I can’t see the previous submission in the Slashdot dashboard, which is odd. There seem to be some changes going on in the site. Regardless, keep an eye on the news.

Mike Coogan

Workout session
Photo captured in July 2005

A month ago I mentioned the fitness competition which took place right here in Manchester. I may have neglected to properly acknowledge and give attribution to the winner, Mike Coogan. He beat me by 20 points (a small gap) and snatched the Mr. Fitness title for 2006. For what it’s worth, here is a detailed list outlining of the different stages of the competition, which spanned a period of approximately 5 months.

  1. Rowing 3000 meters, ‘Concept’ ergo level 10 (slow equipment)
  2. Bench press (Scott machine), 1 repetition maximum
  3. 800 meters on treadmill, 10 degrees horizontal incline
  4. Shoulder press (Scott machine), 1 repetition maximum
  5. Crosstrainer 3,000 strides at level 5, no grip on bars
  6. Maximum pushups (120-second limit)
  7. Step-ups 200 repetitions (with two 6 KG dumbbells)
  8. Squats on Smith machine, 1 repetition maximum
  9. 10.15 KM run (treadmill)
  10. Mini-triathlon (3-mile run, 1,000 strides (level 5) on crosstrainer, 1-mile row on ergo (level 5))

Intellectual Property: No Such Thing

Von NeumannWith the exception of certain processes in chemistry and maybe even medicine, all so called ‘intellectual property” should ultimately become void. Even in medicine there’s an in-between because people are dying due to patents that lead to heavy levy.

Intellectual property — no such thing. There is property. There is intellect. What society/industry calls “intellectual property” is neither an intellectual thing to do, nor can it be owned.

Intellectual property — no such thing. It’s a man-made concept intended to gain personal advantage at the expense of communal/mutual benefit.

(shown on the left is John Von Neumann — a man of science, not a man of money-making)

The Good Life? Only for Aristocrats

Wine bottle

A long time ago I mentioned the UK rich list, which actually got this site many visits I do not really deserve. For what it’s worth, here are some more shocking figures.

Richest 2% own ‘half the wealth’

The richest 2% of adults in the world own more than half of all household wealth, according to a new study by a United Nations research institute.

I find this highly disturbing and this requires immediate change, or else society will collapse. Environmental issues aside (they are partly a result of greed), the gap between the rich and the poor seems to be widening. I am not entirely sure about it, but it seems as though the middle class gradually vanishes, which is something that projects such as the one-laptop-per-child (OLPC) concept try to address and resolve. Here’s another BBC article. It was published earlier today and it elaborates on this very humane initiative.

$100 laptop project eyes launch

Ultimately the project’s backers hope the machines could sell for as little as $100 (£55).

The first countries to sign up to buying the machine include Brazil, Argentina, Uruguay, Nigeria, Libya, Pakistan and Thailand.

I’ve been tagged… Five things you don’t know about me

Roy as a baby
Photo from around 1984

DEREK tagged me almost a fortnight ago, but I didn’t realise this until Technorati (also known as Egorati) flagged a related ping from Dave. Initailly, I was not going to tag anyone because my response is so overly belated, but in order to carry on this chain and off the top of my head (and feed reader) I’d choose Homer, Computer Guru, Michele, Chetan and last but not least—Harvey.

So, five embarrassing (by choice) things you did not know about me:

  1. I never tie my shoes these days. Whether it’s sneakers or something more formal, I tie the laces just once and then use the shoes as though they were flip-flops.
  2. As s child, I wanted to play the trombone
  3. I worked at Burger King for a year
  4. I have had imposters in the past. Misrepresentation and social engineering then became more of a threat.
  5. I always use the computer while I eat

The path of this chain so far: me » Derek van Vilet » Chris Finke » C.K. Sample » Jason Calacanis » Amanda Congdon » Michael Ambs » Rick Rey » Steve Woolf » Steve Garfield » Jeff Pulver.

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