debian

Updated Crimson Fields Debian Package

Crimson Fields screenshot

I'm currently trying to reduce the backlog regarding my Debian work. Today I packaged the new upstream release of Crimson Fields, a turn-based strategy game in the tradition of Battle Isle (tm).
Expect more updated packages and a few ITPs (Intent To Package) soon.

Interesting KDE Stuff

KDE Logo

I'm stumbling over lots of interesting KDE stuff lately. First, I'm a long-time happy user of akregator, a very nice KDE RSS Reader, which I use for my daily blog and news reading. Second, I'm using KOrganizer (calendar + organizer) on a regular basis for about 3-4 weeks now, and I'm quite content with that, too.

At this very moment, I'm compiling Taskjuggler, a very nice project management tool for KDE (a Debian package is on it's way). The screenshots definately look very promising.

Fresh from Planet Debian: Isaac Clerencia reports that KDE and Wikipedia announced a cooperation. They're planning a Webservices API which allows KDE (and other) applications to query Wikipedia content and embed it into the applications (e.g. a music player could display information from Wikipedia about the artist performing the currently played song).

Nice stuff.

OpenSolaris [Update]

A lot of hype is going on lately about OpenSolaris. Here's a short summary (mixed with some stupid comments from me) for those who missed the news until now.

  • Although the license (the CDDL) has been OSI-approved, it's not exactly a license I'd consider free. It's especially not GPL-compatible, it seems.
  • The usual grep "idiot" * in the source code and similar searches (which do reveal some hits, although the code was cleaned before the release), are being discussed on Slashdot and elsewhere. My personal favourite is this comment in the code:
    Thank God nobody's looking at this comment, or my reputation would be ruined.
    Bad luck for this guy.
    Lessons learned: Always write your code and comments as if the whole world could read them, because one day that might be the case.
  • Jörg Schilling is preparing SchilliX, an OpenSolaris distribution and LiveCD.
  • A small analysis of the code, performed by me using David Wheeler's sloccount:
    The whole source contains ca. 4.1 million lines of code (MLOC), spread across ca. 24.000 files. (OpenSolaris ships with a complete Perl distribution in the tarball. I removed that before the analysis).
    Compare this to Linux: ca. 4.2 MLOC (Linux 2.6.11.10) in 18.000 files.
  • Rumours about a Debian GNU/OpenSolaris seem to float around. The license might be a problem, I guess. We'll see...

Update: The above quote is from the GRUB source code (included in OpenSolaris), not from the original OpenSolaris code. Thanks for the corrections. Also, Linux has 4.2 MLOC, not 4.2 LOC (yay, I spotted that one myself ;-).

Free Software and Motivation

Thomas Breitner has released his (German) thesis "Freie Software - Motivation und Engagement" which examines the motives of Free Software developers for working on Free Software.

It features a good historical introduction of the Free Software movement in general and discusses topics such as geeks, nerds, hacking etc. The main part is about the social aspects, though, especially motivation and commitment in the Free Software community.

The results of four interviews with famous Free Software developers are a major part of the thesis. There developers are:

I'm through half of the thesis now and really recommend reading it, as it gives some interesting insights into the social aspects of Free Software development.

(via Harald Welte's blog)

Holy Cow!

# apt-get update && apt-get install cowsay

# cowsay "Cowsay is a pretty funny program. I mean,
it generates talking cows -- how could it get any cooler?"
 ________________________________________
/ Cowsay is a pretty funny program. I    \
| mean, it generates talking cows -- how |
\ could it get any cooler?               /
 ----------------------------------------
        \   ^__^
         \  (oo)\_______
            (__)\       )\/\
                ||----w |
                ||     ||

# cowsay -p "OK. A paranoid cow would be cooler."
 _____________________________________
< OK. A paranoid cow would be cooler. >
 -------------------------------------
        \   ^__^
         \  (@@)\_______
            (__)\       )\/\
                ||----w |
                ||     ||

# cowsay -f bunny "Did you know there's lots of other animals
you can draw with cowsay? Have a look at /usr/share/cowsay/cows
and use the -f option. There are even web frontends and a Wikipedia
article for cowsay..."
 ________________________________________
/ Did you know there's lots of other     \
| animals you can draw with cowsay? Have |
| a look at /usr/share/cowsay/cows and   |
| use the -f option. There are even web  |
| frontends and a Wikipedia article for  |
\ cowsay...                              /
 ----------------------------------------
  \
   \   \
        \ /\
        ( )
      .( o ).

# cowsay -f dragon-and-cow 'OK sucker, now stop drawing cows and get some work done!'
 ______________________________________
/ OK sucker, now stop drawing cows and \
\ get some work done!                  /
 --------------------------------------
                       \                    ^    /^
                        \                  / \  // \
                         \   |\___/|      /   \//  .\
                          \  /O  O  \__  /    //  | \ \           *----*
                            /     /  \/_/    //   |  \  \          \   |
                            @___@`    \/_   //    |   \   \         \/\ \
                           0/0/|       \/_ //     |    \    \         \  \
                       0/0/0/0/|        \///      |     \     \       |  |
                    0/0/0/0/0/_|_ /   (  //       |      \     _\     |  /
                 0/0/0/0/0/0/`/,_ _ _/  ) ; -.    |    _ _\.-~       /   /
                             ,-}        _      *-.|.-~-.           .~    ~
            \     \__/        `/\      /                 ~-. _ .-~      /
             \____(oo)           *.   }            {                   /
             (    (--)          .----~-.\        \-`                 .~
             //__\\  \__ Ack!   ///.----..<        \             _ -~
            //    \\               ///-._ _ _ _ _ _ _{^ - - - - ~
(a web frontend, another web frontend, Wikipedia article)
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