• Coding,  Open Source,  Ubuntu

    Good Practices: Compiling from Source #3

    In my first post, I wrote about the configuration step in compilation. In my last post, I wrote about the compile step. This post is about the last step, installation. Rubber Hits the Road You’ve configured and compiled your project, and all the files that the project needs to run are built and ready to be used. They’re in the build directory after the compile, and need to be put in the filesystem the right way. For example, if you built a command line executable, it has to be put somewhere where the default $PATH variables can find the executable. It also has to put any libraries it needs in…

  • Coding,  Open Source,  Ubuntu,  Uncategorized

    Good Practices: Compiling from Source #2

    I went over the first part of compiling (configuring) in my earlier blog post here. Easy Make Oven Now, you’ve successfully configured your project, and you’re ready to build. Thankfully, this step is usually pretty straightforward and simple, all you do is type make and the project should build successfully. The configure step took care of all the heavy lifting for you, and is why we have that configure step! Although this step is usually pretty foolproof, there are annoyances and frustrations that can pop up. The Time, man, the Time! The first annoyance is that this step can take a long long time! I’m still surprised when coders don’t…

  • Coding,  Open Source,  Ubuntu

    Good Pracitices: Compiling from Source #1

    If you’ve ever been enthusiastic about an open source project, you’ve likely compiled a bleeding edge version of a project before. I know a many non-coders do this, and I can empathize that it is potentially confusing for people. The basic idea of a build system is to: ensure that you have all the libraries, tools, and files needed for the project (configure) be able to compile the program with one command (make) install the project onto the host system so that it usable (make install) I’m going to cover #1 today, that is, how to ensure you have what you need, and how to practically work through problems when…

  • Coding,  Open Source

    The Art of

    “We should forget about small efficiencies, say about 97% of the time: premature optimization is the root of all evil” –Donald Knuth   If you’ve heard of Big-O analysis, or linked lists, or sorting, or searching, or recursion, or pretty much any other thing you as a programmer would know, chances are Donald Knuth was writing about it first in his 1968 book The Art of Computer Programming. The quote above is one of my favorites, and there’s a lot of insight in it. Put another way, Knuth is reminding us that “over-optimization” from the start leads to unnecessary headaches further down the road, and can even cause projects to…

  • Open Source,  Reviews,  Ubuntu

    Gnome Shell hits the streets!

    Gnome shell has been released! Its a total revamp of the classic Gnome 2.x desktop. I think they’ve done a pretty good job with it, and its good to see Gnome continue to move forward! You can try it out with a LiveUSB/LiveCD from http://www.gnome3.org/, or you can install it on Ubuntu using the Gnome3 PPA here

  • Open Source,  Ubuntu

    Growing the San Diego OSS Community

    For the last few months, I’ve been running the Ubuntu Hours here in San Diego county. We’ve had between 2-4 people at each event. All in all, not bad, but I think we can do better as time goes on. I really think we need to focus more on the marketing department to get the community around here thriving. For starters, I’ve made a flier in Inkscape based off of nhaines’s California Loco logo: I’ll post these around town in various places that are likely to have tech-minded people around. My main goals at this point in time is to have Ubuntu Loco in San Diego be a positive member…

  • Open Source,  Random

    Promote Open Source by Discouraging Software Piracy

    When I hear someone saying, “Man, I just nicked [Photoshop CS2][Windows 7][*] from a torrent site. Cracked the serial with this mod I found”, it really gets under my skin. I hear this from Linux users who happen to use a lot of Windows applications, and from non technical people, and I’m sure its still rampant in the Windows-based script kiddies scene. It doesn’t peeve me from a moral perspective, nor am I sympathetic to the lost revenue for that particular company; what annoys me is the lost opportunity for open source. Like many other open source advocates, I have great respect on a fundamental level for software licenses. They…

  • Compiz,  News,  Open Source,  Ubuntu

    Unity and the Bicycle Shed

    I head an allegory at Scale9x from the head of the OpenShot video editing program last week that I think is pretty amusing and profound: “If you set out to build a nuclear power plant, there will be 2 people who know how the core reactor works, but everyone in the company will have a strong opinion on what color the bicycle shed at the front gate should be” Once Ubuntu repaints the bicycle shed by switching to Unity, it sure will be interesting to see the reactions from various segments of the community! Some people will hate it, some will love it, but it should shake up things for…

  • News,  Open Source,  Ubuntu


    I’ll be heading to Scale9x next weekend! SCaLe is the Southern California Linux expo, and I’m really happy to be heading there to help out with the Ubuntu booth at the expo, and to meet other Linux folks from all around the southwestern United States and northwestern Mexico! We’ll have 3 or 4 people heading up from the San Diego area (like me) to help on out at the Ubuntu booth, and to meet the other California Loco team members from the LA area, and from the San Francisco area. I’m pumped to meet everyone, the fledgling San Diego community can use all the help it get! 🙂 So, come…