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Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Blogger in Beta

Oh, and in addition to upgrading to Iceweasel, I've also taken the leap to the new Blogger. It's still in beta, but I've already noticed significantly faster editing and publishing. There's a seemingly nifty layout function that goes beyond static CSS hacking, but I've not dared to try my hand on it yet.

A possible downside is that instead of a separate Blogger logon, they've integrated it with memberships and stuff. I'm not sure I like that, since it would appear that to have multiple Blogger accounts, I need a distinct email address for each and every one. (Why would I want that? Glad you asked; if I want to use and display different personal profiles, that's what 'll need.)

So all I need now for my Google-induced happiness is a GMail account. But that's not yet in widespread release so I guess I'll just have to wait.

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Iceweasel in Debian, Part Two

After a few days of procrastinating, I finally upgraded to Iceweasel 2.0, that is, Firefox 2.0 minus the trademarked logo. Mysterious are the ways of militantly free open source, but it's a very nice browser.

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Wednesday, November 22, 2006

The MS Windows Vista EULA

Microsoft's version of the brave, new world was never more apparent than in the Windows Vista EULA:
You may not work around any technical limitations in the software.
In other words, you're prohibited from downloading and installing any patch or driver to your shiny new Windows Vista OS, unless the patch or driver is provided by Microsoft. Where do you want to go today? Me, I want to run away screaming.

I think I'll stick to Debian GNU/Linux, for now.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Iceweasel in Debian

Long time no blog. Shocking as it may seem, I've not blogged since September. I'm sure you've all missed me.

Anyway, here's why I blogged today. To put it simply, the Mozilla Foundation uses a trademarked Firefox logo that Debian team cannot distribute with its upcoming Etch release of the Debian OS, and therefore decided to rename the browser Iceweasel. The current license (of the logo) does not allow the reselling of software that includes the Firefox logo, so the renaming was the only option available to the Debian team if they wanted to distribute the browser. (For those of you not in the know, Debian is free software, and you can do whatever you want with the OS, including reselling it for a hefty sum of money.)

Unfortunately, Debian's taking a lot of heat for the move. The decision to let Debian remain free and untainted by non-free licenses is called anything from "lame" to "disruptive", and people are arguing that Debian's strict license policy is hurting the open source movement since Firefox is its flagship product, soon to run on every desktop there is. And the policy is supposedly extra dangerous now, when Microsoft finally decided to upgrade Internet Explorer.

Unfortunately, people are missing the point. This is what open source really is about. The whole development model is about the freedom to do whatever you want with the software, including reselling it. It's the "free" part that enables fast development, quick and efficient bug tracking, and new versions as fast as you can type apt-get.

Don't let the open source ideals get lost because of some stupid image that will be changed and forgotten in a few version bumps, anyway.

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