Ubuntu 9.10 boot time


I decided to finally clock the boot time on my installation of Ubuntu 9.10 (Karmic Koala). Total time from the GRUB menu to a fully loaded desktop is 31.5 seconds, including the time it took for me to choose my name and type in my password as fast as I could. Time from GRUB menu until login screen was about… I’m not too sure, but around 15-20 seconds.

Not bad! I would be interesting to hear others’ boot time!


The Naming of the Bovid

Michael Lustfield is crazy. He also wrote a post on his web log in which he, long story short, pretty much claims the GNU project is being a bunch of whiny babies about the whole GNU/Linux / Linux naming convention discussion that’s been going on for a great while now.

I generally share the same opinion as Michael. GNU, in their own documents (as reviewed by Michael), keep saying

  • “We started this thing. We were first. Give us credit.”
  • “GNU is an operating system, just lacking a kernel.”
  • “Most people use a GNU/Linux system which is essentially a GNU system with Linux tacked on.”
  • “We deserve credit because the operating system you use is GNU. (…) Using the Linux kernel.”

I interpret Michael’s opinion to be that “GNU IS NOT an operating system” because they never finished their own kernel, while GNU feels that an operating system is a complete, general system that enables you to do your work with your computer.

It is my belief that it all boils down to one’s definition of “operating system”. I acknowledge several definitions, but one definition is much simpler than the other; it is much easier to just define it as “the kernel”, but if you define it the way GNU defines it you are faced with the difficult problem of where to draw the line. Should a Word Processor count as essential software in the operating system? Media player? GAMES? APPARENTLY according to GNU (again, see Michael’s post and/or GNU’s documents).

This is a problem, so I do actually prefer the OS to be just “the kernel”. This is why I don’t feel bad saying that “I use Linux”, and not that “I use GNU slash Linux”, the latter of which would just sound ridiculous in all honesty.

But even so, if you would take “operating system” to mean what GNU feels an operating system means, you most definitely have to include the kernel, and GNU’s software and the Linux kernel are huge contributions in such an operating system. This is why it would be appropriate to call it GNU/Linux, but then for the same reason, GNU still really isn’t an operating system without Linux, so no, Michael, GNU indeed IS NOT an operating system.

Regarding the quote “with a kernel tacked on” (might be paraphrased), as if the kernel is just a regular piece of software running inside the OS. It’s much more than that—it’s what facilitates all the system resources to all other software in the “operating system”. All this is pretty confusing, but in conclusion, GNU isn’t an operating system by my definition, which is that the operating system is the kernel:

Schematic View of Operating System

Schematic Orientation of Operating System

Interestingly, a Wikipedia article defines the kernel to be, in fact, a part of the operating system, but I don’t think the definition in general is set in stone.

Nonetheless, while the GNU folks do come off as being whiny babies about this, there is truth in that it is important to recognize GNU for the work that they have done and for what they have done and are doing the work, which is a great, great thing. But fussing over the naming of operating systems is definitely not the way to go about doing this. It clearly just causes frustration in the community, and it is dividing it. Luckily I don’t think this fussing is causing a division deep enough to cause any real damage because of shared philosophies, but it is worth being fine with calling it just “Linux”, getting on with your life, and finding another way to promote Free Software.


0.1 Terabyte Ethernet


Need I say more? I cannot wait. 100 Gigabit Ethernet!


Ubuntu 9.10


Go, now, and download the disc image file: http://www.ubuntu.com/

I was booted into Windows when downloading it so I thought I might as well burn the disc there too before booting into Ubuntu 9.04 to back-up my files and eventually install the new version.

Well, burning the disc failed for unknown reasons, freezing every single running application in the process (which is why the reasons for failing the burning are unknown). I had to do a forced shutdown with the power-button. I haven’t had to do that in a long time and thought I was in the clear. But oh, Windows, how you manage to surprise me again and again! Ha-ha!!! YOU GOT ME.

Grr. Why on earth would the disc have anything to do with THE ENTIRE REST OF THE SYSTEM and not just the application trying to access the disc? That is just moronic. Inevitable, perhaps. Moronic nonetheless.

Anyways I can’t wait to see Ubuntu 9.10 in full speed (I’ve been running the beta in a virtual machine for a couple of weeks).

Enjoy the Karmic Koala!


>>> I invite anyone who claims CO2 is not a pollutant to sit in a room full of it for 10 minutes.
>> I invite anyone who claims pure water is not a pollutant to sit in a room full of it for 10 minutes.
> I invite anyone who claims pure oxygen is not a pollutant to sit in a room full of it for 10 minutes

I invite anyone who claims pure vacuum is not a pollutant to sit in a room full of it for 10 minutes.

Slashdot comments.


Cutest Comic

There is an extremely cute comic out there. One strip doesn’t really do it justice, but this is an example of how cute this comic can be.


Silly Bear

I just thought this was hilarious.

UPDATE: And this. And THIS. Also. Absolutely abdomen-crushingly hilarious.


Samsung says: Ditch School!

Samsung wants you to fail your class. Samsung instead wants you to go to the beach and place your brand new laptop on your surfing board.

In an ad on the Internet, Samsung poses a scenario to you: “You just got invited to the beach, but you have to write your English paper.” You are then presented with two buttons — one which is boldly blue and flashing and has the word “GO” on it, and another which is gray and boring-looking and has the word “STAY” on it.

When I saw the ad, I obviously clicked STAY. If I have an English paper I need to write, I’m going to stay and finish it, of course! Especially if it’s due soon. There’s no time to go to the beach! But what Samsung told be was, literally: “You get an A+ in boring.

… Okay? I clicked the STAY button again, and Smugnas, err, Samsung told me: “How annoyingly responsible of you.

Are you kidding me? I clicked again to see if they wouldn’t tell me I should light up a spliff and drive through some school zones. Samsung says: “You really live on the edge, huh?

Nice role models, Samguns. Oops, I mean Samsung. Well, you might as well be handing out guns. Who thought up the idea for this ad campaign? This is ridiculous! These people at Samsung must obviously have gone to college and have lived to see that it is a very important part of your education, and of your life. Why would they tell you to go to the beach instead of writing your English paper due soon?

Obviously they want to make money and have you buy and use a computer they sell, so they tell you to do that, but don’t they realize the kind of impression it makes on people? I guess maybe they only care about one demographic: People who like going to the beach, who are in college, and who are dumb enough not to realize they need to do what they’re told in school or else they fail!


Friday The Thirteenth

Continuing on with interesting facts about the Gregorian Calendar (not to say there is a lot of them):

The 400-year cycle of the Gregorian calendar has 146,097 days and hence exactly 20,871 weeks. […] In the 400-year cycle, more months begin on a Sunday (and hence have Friday the 13th) than any other day of the week. 688 out of every 4800 months (or 172/1200) begin on a Sunday, while only 684 out of every 4800 months (171/1200) begin on each of Saturday and Monday, the least common cases.

How about a look-back at some wonderful Friday The 13th moments, by Cinemassacre’s James Rolfe.

By the way, close call this month with today’s Friday the 14th.

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Uncanny City

I was watching The Departed (2006) last night, and I couldn’t stop thinking about how Vera Farmiga has features just like Gillian Anderson. Her lips where the same, her voice is the same, her accent is the same and she speaks her words and consonants the same way Gillian does. I thought they were sisters or something, but apparently they’re not related as far as I can tell.

I figured I would give you a glimpse of what I’m talking about:



Might not be the best pictures that I’ve chosen, but when they talk and act, I see double.