CareerNexus: a new way to find work

The start-up that I have co-foun­ded, CareerNex­us, is look­ing for job seekers to take part in a product test and mar­ket exper­i­ment. If you, or someone you know, wants to know more and poten­tially take part, mes­sage me. If we can help just a frac­tion of those people who…

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A Complete Literacy Experience For Young Children

From the “I should have pos­ted this months ago” vault… When I led tech­no­logy devel­op­ment at One Laptop per Child Aus­tralia, I main­tained two golden rules: everything that we release must ‘just work’ from the per­spect­ive of the user (usu­ally a child or teach­er), and…

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Interview with Australian Council for Computers in Education Learning Network

Adam Holt and I were inter­viewed last night by the Aus­trali­an Coun­cil for Com­puters in Edu­ca­tion Learn­ing Net­work about our not-for-profit work to improve edu­ca­tion­al oppor­tun­it­ies for chil­dren in the devel­op­ing world. We talked about One Laptop per Child, OLPC…

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Why ‘Free and Open’ matters

Adobe is drop­ping Linux sup­port for their Adobe AIR devel­op­ment plat­form. To be hon­est, I don’t really care. Why? Because I’ve been care­ful enough to not tie my efforts to a pro­pri­et­ary plat­form. I’ve had sev­er­al groups offer to write applications/​activities for OLPC…

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Video of linux​.conf​.au talk

The video of my talk at linux​.conf​.au is online. You can watch/​download it online (OGV format). Over­all, I think it went quite well. A per­son­al cri­ti­cism is that I need to ser­i­ously cut back on my use of ‘um’ and ‘ah’ sounds. Sug­ges­tions on com­bat­ing this prob­lem…

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OLPC support from the Prime Minister of Australia

We at OLPC Aus­tralia cel­eb­rated our first birth­day with a massive bang — a black-tie gala event held at the Museum of Con­tem­por­ary Art on Sydney Har­bour. It was a won­der­ful night of cel­eb­rat­ing Aus­trali­an Indi­gen­ous art, music, cul­ture and food. Cor­por­ate spon­sors…

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vrms meme

I’m not usu­ally one for blog memes, but what the hell 🙂 A down­side of vrms is that it can only look at pack­ages installed via the OS pack­aging sys­tem. I know I have the Adobe Flash Plug-in installed (manu­ally) as well. Nev­er­the­less, the res­ult isn’t too bad, and I…

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Bimbo and the Nerd?

An intriguing offer came through to the SLUG-chat mail­ing list a few weeks ago: an Aus­trali­an ver­sion of Beauty and the Geek is in the works, and they’re look­ing for geeks. I’ll be hon­est and admit that I’m a fan of the US ver­sion of the show. The ‘geeks’ feel like…

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Packing FOSS

Just for a second, put your­self in the shoes of an aver­age PC user. You use the soft­ware that came with your com­puter, plus per­haps some oth­ers that you down­loaded, bought in a box or ‘bor­rowed’ from a friend. You’ve heard some good things about some­thing called “open…

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Great start… but the hard work is just beginning

Donna Ben­jamin roun­ded a small group of us togeth­er to write a let­ter to Julia Gil­lard, Deputy Prime Min­is­ter and Min­is­ter for Edu­ca­tion. The res­ult was widely syn­dic­ated, hope­fully build­ing some mind­share in the pro­cess. The Edu­ca­tion Expo proved to me more than…

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Education Expo report

Two weeks ago, we had the Edu­ca­tion Expo. Here’s my report, as co-ordin­at­or of the Linux Aus­tralia stand: Edu­ca­tion Expo Sat 14 to Sun 15 June Rose­hill Race­course, Sydney The Edu­ca­tion Expo is an annu­al trades show tar­geted towards the K-12 edu­ca­tion­al space. Vis­it­ors…

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IRC on the run

Those who remem­ber my ancient quest for the per­fect IRC solu­tion might be inter­ested in these posts by Aaron Toponce explain­ing how to couple a remote irssi ses­sion with GUI noti­fic­a­tion. I’m still quite happy with my cur­rent Bip + Xchat com­bin­a­tion, but I’ve always…

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A Different Kind of Interview

Every now and then I’m invited to provide media com­ment­ary on an issue regard­ing tech­no­logy, par­tic­u­larly when it is to do with (GNU/)Linux or oth­er free and open source soft­ware. On this occa­sion, the ques­tions took a slightly dif­fer­ent turn with the news that…

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Has it been worth it?

I am still try­ing to under­stand the bene­fit to loc­al res­id­ents of host­ing APEC in Sydney. Sydney­siders have been effect­ively told that they won’t be wel­come in their own city for over a week — so thought­fully exten­ded by two days by our good friend George W. Bush (God…

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Tipping point

Read­ing this Ker­nel­Trap art­icle, I came across an inter­est­ing quote from Linus Tor­valds: “Really early on when I was mak­ing Linux, one of the things I was really doing was read­ing Inter­net news from the uni­ver­sity com­puter. I was dial­ing up to the uni­ver­sity, I…

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Optimus Prime lives!

Free­dom is the right of all sen­tient beings.” — Optimus Prime This one throwaway line in the new Trans­formers film is in fact homage to the ori­gin­al Trans­formers series. As obser­v­ant read­ers of this blog may have noticed, I am quite a fan of the…

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Happy Tamil New Year!

It’s New Year’s Day in the Tamil cal­en­dar, so happy new year! I didn’t know about this until only a few days ago, and coin­cid­ent­ally I con­cluded my job yes­ter­day. Also coin­cid­ent­ally, yes­ter­day was Fri­day the 13th. So it looks like I might be at the mercy of two…

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Eh-Oh!

I have been com­pletely floored by Ubuntu’s new Migra­tion Assist­ant. It’s cer­tainly some­thing that we have needed in the FLOSS world for a long time. Any­thing we can do to reduce migrat­ory hurdles is by all means wel​come​.To play devil’s advoc­ate, how­ever, I’d like to…

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Censorship?

What do you do when you’re in the city and need to kill some time? Watch­ing a film soun­ded like a fair option to me. The cine­mat­ic mas­ter­piece (!), ‘Epic Movie’, caught my eye. I wasn’t expect­ing much from it at all, so I placed myself into Low Expect­a­tions…

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Symbols of Wisdom?

I’ve recently been pon­der­ing the ques­tion, what truly con­sti­tutes wis­dom? Can it be determ­ined by age, your intel­li­gence quo­tient or how many people read your web­log? It is a ques­tion that shall prob­ably forever elude me.What promp­ted me to philo­soph­ise over this is…

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Charles in Charge

For some reas­on, I’m reminded of the title of a 1980s sit­com. No, my name is not Charles, thank you for remind­ing me​.My man­ager arranged to go on leave over the fort­night school hol­i­day peri­od, and in his pre-hol­i­day euphor­ia he decided to leave the respons­ib­il­ity of…

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Teh winnar!

They say that the first step towards deal­ing with an addic­tion is admit­ting that you have one. For that pur­pose, I have a con­fes­sion to make: I am addicted to Open Source On The Air. For the unini­ti­ated, OSOTA is a weekly Inter­net radio pro­gramme hos­ted by James and…

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Microsoft: Brown is the new White

Microsoft have announced their Zune music/​video play­er to take on Apple’s iPod. Like Apple, they con­sider col­our to be an import­ant dif­fer­en­ti­at­or in the mar­ket­place. With white hav­ing been co-opted by Apple, and black being the gen­er­ic (and hence indis­tinct­ive) hue,…

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Most significant trend!

This report is pretty cool. The emphas­is was added by myself. The open source soft­ware phe­nomen­on has spread far bey­ond Linux and is gain­ing enorm­ous momentum, accord­ing to an IDC study of over 5,000 developers in 116 coun­tries, rep­res­ent­ing 38 developer net­works. The…

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Must-see film

A must-see film for any­one who grew up in the ‘80s.  More info here. It’s a shame that the offi­cial site requires Flash 8 to run. That locks us GNU/​Linux users out…

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Mockups & KDE4

KDE4 devel­op­ment is under­way, and users and developers are hav­ing their say on how it should look. One thing that irks me is when someone posts a mockup of some ‘new’ idea, when in fact that idea is just lif­ted from some­where else. I have no prob­lem with deriv­a­tion or…

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Ice Skating & Superman

Whenev­er most people go ice skat­ing, they usu­ally begin by cling­ing onto the bar­ri­er going around the edge of the rink. I am no excep­tion, but con­sid­er­ing that I hadn’t skated in close to ten years, I was pleas­antly sur­prised that I was able to skate away from the…

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Lazy Arse

I finally got off my lazy arse and set up a blog! I had been mulling over vari­ous pos­sib­il­it­ies of imple­ment­a­tion, includ­ing set­ting up my own Web serv­er, pur­chas­ing host­ing and even cod­ing the whole thing myself in Django or Ruby on Rails. There are some things I…

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Movie of the Year

I must nom­in­ate Hotel Rwanda as my Movie of the Year. I know that it was offi­cially released last year, but it only came to Aus­tralia this year. I rank it right up there with two of my oth­er favour­ite movies, The Killing Fields and Hotaru no haka (Grave of the…

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A+ Certification

I am now CompTIA A+ cer­ti­fied! Not that this is much to brag about. It is mostly rote-learn­ing and is heav­ily Win­dows-focused. In fact, a major part of it is know­ing how to per­form tasks like set up a modem or print­er in Win­dows, right down to mem­or­ising exactly what…

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Metropolis

2011-02-02 update: Updated link. Thanks to Jack Moore. Yes­ter­day I watched the new Kino ver­sion of Met­ro­pol­is. No, I’m not talk­ing about the animé (which I must see some­time since I’m a huge animé fan), but the 1927 Fritz Lang cine­mat­ic mas­ter­piece. The movie is…

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Smorgasboard of whackiness

Anoth­er Jack­ass copycat injured ” AN 18-year-old was in crit­ic­al con­di­tion after jump­ing from a five-storey build­ing in an appar­ent imit­a­tion of a stunt from the tele­vi­sion show Jack­ass. ” The youth was attempt­ing to jump into a pool from the roof of a…

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Galeon rocks!

I am a heavy user of the Gale­on Web browser. IMHO, it is far and away the best browser avail­able for any plat­form. Tabs and ses­sion sup­port with crash recov­ery are bril­liant fea­tures. Not only has Gale­on had them for longer than most oth­er browsers, it imple­ments them…

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Nelson Mandela is dead

Haha, made you look! ” Rumors of their demise were greatly exag­ger­ated, one could say, when CNN acci­dent­ally made pub­licly avail­able obit­u­ar­ies of sev­er­al inter­na­tion­al fig­ures who are in fact still among the liv­ing. ” Read the art­icle at CNN and see the…

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English Sans French

I came across this art­icle at csmon​it​or​.com. Basic­ally, it’s point­ing out how juven­ile a boy­cott of all words and products of French ori­gin would be, for example renam­ing French fries to free­dom fries. Besides, they are actu­ally from Bel­gi­um, not France. Maybe we…

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What’d you mean it’s 2003?!

I hope every­body had a great New Year’s Eve. I know I did. Reap­er had a huge party at his place, and from his bal­cony we had a prime view of the NYE fire­works on Sydney Har­bour. Need­less to say I had heaps of fun. Reaper’s punch (i.e. of the bever­age vari­ety) was very…

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glibc blues

I haven’t pos­ted any art­icles on PCLinuxOn­line over the past three weeks because I b0rked my Gentoo sys­tem. I upgraded from glibc 2.2.5 to 2.3.1 and since then I haven’t been able to run cer­tain apps without wreck­ing everything else. I’ve detailed my prob­lem here and…

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A New Hope

Yeah, so I ripped the title off Star Wars, so what?  About three weeks ago (I think… I lose track of dates eas­ily) on a Sat­urday I got a rather frantic call from my old friend Reap­er. Here’s the Hol­ly­wood ver­sion (for your read­ing pleas­ure): Reap­er:…

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Melbourne

I left to Mel­bourne on Fri­day night and got back at 2am Wed­nes­day. It’s Fri­day now. I wanted to write some­thing here earli­er but I got lazy​.In short: I had a great time. I really needed to unwind, and now I feel much more relaxed​.Now I’ve got a huge back­log of stuff…

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