Tuesday, August 26, 2003

Never Enough Bootable Linux CDs Department

...Partially because the first post never showed up, and partially because the subject came up again, I thought I'd post a few other Linux distributions that are bootable off CD-R:
  • The Trinity Resource Kit is mainly geared towards rescuing PCs that have been damaged...
  • ...As is the Emergency Linux CD project...
  • ...And the FIRE project.
  • Eagle Linux lets you truly customize your own bootable Linux CD. It allows for bootable disk images as small as 4 Mb, perfect for burning onto business-card sized CD-ROMs. Speaking of....
  • LNX-BBCis specifically designed for business-card sized CD-ROMs, so you can not only boot Linux without blowing out your OS, you can store the boot disk in your pocket!

So there you go--lots and lots of options. All you need is a bit of initiative.

Wednesday, August 20, 2003

Never Enough Linux Inducements Department

OK, so Linus Torvalds has formally stated that SCO is "smoking crack" when it claims to have found fragments of SCO's System V UNIX code within Linux. Day by day, SCO seems to have a weaker and weaker case, and their lawsuit against IBM for selling Linux servers has become a joke.

But suppose you find yourself saying, "So what. I can't be bothered to get to know my hardware, and as long as I have an operating system that just works, I don't really care which OS I use."

Easy enough. There is not one, but two Linux flavors available on CD-ROM.

Knoppix can be purchased as a CD-ROM for $5 at CheapBytes.com, or you can download it for free and burn onto a CD-R. It automatically figures out what hardware you have and sets up a fairly decent user interface on the fly. Literally, in five minutes you can experience Linux without having to rip out your current OS or puzzle over settings for your keyboard, mouse, monitor, printer, Internet, etc. etc. For people cutting their teeth with *NIX or simply ready to try an alternative to Microsoft, this may well be the distribution you want.

But suppose you got into computers mainly for their creative potential. You don't even necessarily need expensive software with extra-fancy features, just software with which you can draw, design, edit, publish, mix. That's why there is dyne:bolic, a similar, yet in fairness not quite as robust Linux distribution that also boots off a CD-R. It's only available as a downloadable disk image that you can burn then boot from. The true beauty of dyne:bolic is its strong emphasis on multimedia applications of all sorts, including the ability to broadcast your own Internet radio station. Imagine getting a cheap Wintel box, and within minutes, using it for your creative persuits. It's that kind of happy.

You might eventually decide to install some kind of *NIX on your machine on a permanent basis, but once you try out one of these distros, it will be hard to go back to Windows.

Monday, August 18, 2003

Never Enough Redrawable Circuitry Department

Researchers at Cambridge University have discovered the means to draw and erase circuits on the fly. While the process is not perfect--the circuit board has to be kept extremely cold--it promises to drastically speed up prototyping new kinds of circuit designs, which should in turn help lower the cost of chips from a design point of view.

Today's been pretty crappy, personally, but news like this helps to brighten even the most "yurg" days. ("Yurg" is my new monosyllable for indicating what it's like to wake up groggy and feeling unwell, with no caffeine or relief in sight. You are warned.)

Friday, August 15, 2003

Never Enough Koppel Mindfucking Department

Poor Ted Koppel. He's only trying to provide news on the Northeastern blackout that took out NYC, Detroit, Cleveland, Toronto, etc., when he gets a call from a Bob Dobbs from the NYC Transit Authority....

...And his brain is never the same again.

Friday, August 08, 2003

Never Enough Stuff To Talk About Department

...It's just that I've been awfully busy as of late, doing stuff I could talk about.

Yes, that includes watching G.I. Joe "Knowing Is Half The Battle"... um... reappropriations. Yes, I think that works. "Reappropriations."

Oh, and doing a little third-party "reappropriations" of my own:

Fanta Shokata Bulldada I
Fanta Shokata Bulldada II
Fanta Shokata Bulldada III
Fanta Shokata Bulldada IV
Fanta Shokata Bulldada V
Fanta Shokata Bulldada VI
Fanta Shokata Bulldada VII
Fanta Shokata Bulldada VIII

...And probably more to come! But first, I have to make our little cardboard box farm look like a house. Time to get funky in the house!