Adobe Systems created a media tsunami earlier this month when it released its Creative Suite 3, a two-year project designed to roll all the company's formidable software packages for creative types into an integrated monolith. Needless to say, since the package costs more than US$1,000, it isn't something for tinkerers. Given my experience with Adobe's software, there would be much fun in tinkering with the suite in the first place.What the release of CS3 did do for tinkerers, though, is provide a launchpad for talk about how a lot of the functionality found in the Adobe suite can be found in programs being offered to the public for free. For instance, applications like Paint.NET and GIMP (GNU Image Manipulation Program) can be, for some users, serviceable alternatives to Photoshop; Inkscape for Illustrator; KompoZer for Dreamweaver; and Scribus for InDesign.Scribus is particularly interesting because low-cost desktop publishing programs aren't as easy to find as they once were. During … [Read more...] about PRODUCT REVIEW Free Desktop Publisher Scribus Is Worth a Look
They say everything old is new again, and it would be difficult to find a better example than a post on Slashdot last week."Why a Linux User Is Using Windows 3.1" is the title of said post, which refers to a recent NetworkWorld story by the same name."About two weeks back, I was using my Android tablet and looking for a good graphics editor," author and said Linux user Bryan Lunduke began. "I wanted something with layers and good text drawing tools. There were some options, but nothing that compared to the Gimp, Inkscape, or Photoshop for the Desktop. Man, wouldn't it be great to have a full version of one of those running on my Nexus 7?"That's when it hit me," Lunduke recounted. "We already have that. Photoshop used to run on Windows 3.1. And Windows 3.1 runs great under both DOSBox and QEMU, both of which are Open Source emulators available for Android and every other platform under the sun."Throw in one old copy of Photoshop and some tweaking on Lunduke's part, and what do you get? … [Read more...] about LINUX BLOG SAFARI Windows 3.1: Geeks’ New Choice for Graphics?
Parsix GNU/Linux 7 is a feature-rich rendition of the GNOME desktop that you must take for a spin regardless of how you feel about the GNOME desktop.Linux GNOME desktop distros are a dime a dozen. What makes Parsix a shinier dime than many of the others is how the tweaking of the GNOME desktop makes this distro such a pleasure to use.Parsix 7, code name Nestor, is wrapped around Debian GNU/Linux Wheezy 7.0. The project's goal is to provide a ready-to-use and easy-to-install operating system based on Debian's testing branch and the latest stable release of the GNOME desktop environment. The Parsix distro meets that goal -- and goes even beyond.The developers parse out releases every six months, which include two annual major, and two-to-four minor distro releases. Unlike other Linux versions, Parsix offers smooth upgrades from older versions to the newer ones via the package manager system or DVD media. This is not quite a rolling release method -- but it definitely gives users a … [Read more...] about LINUX PICKS AND PANS Parsix 7 Morphs GNOME Into a Better Desktop
If you favor the OS X environment, Pearl OS might be a Linux distro to feed your fancy.Pearl OS is a revival of the discontinued Pear OS distro. Pearl picks up where Pear left off in early 2014.Pearl OS has two desktop versions: XFCE and MATE. Both are based on Ubuntu Linux distro version 14.04 Mini release. The two flavors of Pearl OS are customized to look and act like the OS X operating system.But Pearl is Linux and not OS X. This distro runs Debian-based Linux applications. It does not run OS X software or have actual OS X functions.In fact, except for a few cosmetic touches, Pearl OS is not unlike other Linux distros that use the MATE or XFCE desktops. For that matter, it is very similar to Linux distros that run the Docky application launcher at the bottom of the screen.Pearl OS is young but still impressive. Its two desktops have distinct differences. Both adhere to a carefully orchestrated design. Each has the expected user interface traits of the specific desktop.If you have … [Read more...] about LINUX PICKS AND PANS Pearl OS Could Be a Gem in the Making
Linux bloggers' New Year's resolutions tend to be many and varied in any given year, but one most can surely agree upon is the desire to outfit a new PC with nothing but free software.That sentiment, indeed, is just the one that was anticipated over at Computeractive UK, which published a compelling little story along those lines back in December."I want to use only free software on my new PC. Where do I start?" the piece began, before zeroing in on Ubuntu, in particular.Of course, as any good Linux geek knows, there's a wide world of FOSS out there, and Ubuntu is just the beginning -- but certainly not the only one.Bloggers didn't hesitate to pick up that ball and run with it. "I would still choose Ubuntu, and in fact I am still running it," offered Hyperlogos blogger Martin Espinoza. "I would start out with essentially the default set of applications, because that is the path of least resistance, but I would certainly also install some other FoSS greats like Scribus, Inkscape, and … [Read more...] about LINUX BLOG SAFARI Going All-FOSS With a New Computer
BunsenLabs Linux does a bang-up job of picking up where CrunchBang Linux left off.Developer Philip Newborough retired the popular minimalist distro earlier this year. In a world of feature-packed operating systems and bloated Linux distros, he felt his CrunchBang alternative served no further purpose.BunsenLabs is one of three CrunchBang replacements that mimic the lightweight but highly functional OS. CrunchBang++ and CrunchBang-Monara are the other two.BunsenLabs Linux is based on Debian Jessie and continues to run a highly configurable Openbox window manager as the desktop environment. The current release is version 8.2, code-named Hydrogen. The release candidate 1 version was released earlier this year.If you have a tendency to uninstall applications you never use in your current OS, you are a good candidate to try out this minimalistic computing platform. It has the everyday programs you need, and you can add whatever is missing from its own software repository and the Debian … [Read more...] about LINUX PICKS AND PANS Hot New BunsenLabs Linux Eases Pain of CrunchBang Loss
Well it's now been nearly a week since 1234567890 Day, but for many geeks, the fun still hasn't come to an end. Party on!Specifically, following the original Digg post last Wednesday alerting readers to the upcoming occasion, not one, not two, not three but four additional posts on the topic have been among the site's most popular stories.First, xdvx submitted a screenshot marking the arrival of the big moment in Unix time, vowing, "I will tell my kids about this day.""Kids, back in 1234567890, we had to TYPE to use our computers," quipped accn112.Then, babak91 posted a screenshot of a Google logo in honor of the event.Next, on Saturday, dlprager posted a clip of BitTorrent founder Bram Cohen at a 1234567890 Day party in San Francisco, explaining to Revision3 why the event was so significant.Now *that's* a level of geekiness we can only aspire to!Of course, at the party in question, "I saw exactly 0000000000 girl nerds," WorksCited noted.Finally, there was the video posted by … [Read more...] about LINUX BLOG SAFARI Nonstop Parties, Patent Trolls and Members Choice Awards
RoboLinux is an impressive traditional Linux desktop distro. It could be an ideal vehicle for both enterprises and SOHOs to make the migration to Linux.RoboLinux comes with a few extra features that solve some of the potential problems of leaving other desktop platforms. One of its more enticing migration tools is a preconfigured virtual machine add-on that greatly reduces the IT burden of setting up Windows XP or Windows 7 to run in a VM environment within the Linux distro.The website gives the impression that RoboLinux is unique in that it lets you run Windows in a VM setting that is immune to viruses and malware. However, all Linux distros are immune to the targeting attacks of decades-old viruses, as well as new malware. Running Windows in a VM setting within any VM-capable Linux distro will achieve the same degree of safety for Microsoft Windows.Still, RoboLinux has an additional feature set that provides its own process for doing this. For example, it comes with desktop links to … [Read more...] about LINUX PICKS AND PANS RoboLinux Smooths the Linux Migration Path
The Musix Linux distro is a specialty OS with an impressive collection of tools for users with a passion mostly for audio and music production. That same collection of tools should be included for video, given the blending of music and video popular in distributing entertainment on the Internet today. Yet it is missing from Musix.If you have a passion for a well designed, general purpose Linux OS, Musix will leave you tapping a beat for something else. More is neglected in musix that would make this distro more suitable beyond music mania.For instance, Musix lacks its own software repository. It also is too lightweight out of the box to serve typical non-artistic computing tasks.The installed software covers the basics. Newcomers to Linux, however, will be at a loss for support in getting problems solved.Part of this is the result of the Musix developers not having much of an active user forum. This is a common problem when straying this far from the more established Linux communities. … [Read more...] about LINUX PICKS AND PANS Musix Linux: Sweet Strains Jarred by Sour Notes
Well the days are heating up here in the Linux blogosphere, and FOSS fans are flocking to the Broken Windows Lounge as much for the frosty air-conditioning as for the conversation.Even Linux Girl, whose days generally involve far more pavement-pounding than she'd like, has found herself seeking solace in the blogobar's arctic climes far more often than she probably should.It's a good thing she has been, though, or she might have missed the latest juicy debate. "What killer app is Linux missing?" was the question that kicked things off, and the discussion has been escalating ever since."The Free Software world is incredibly rich, and covers pretty much all bases," Linux Voice's Mike Saunders began. "We have a wealth of desktop, server, development and multimedia tools to choose from -- some of which are the best in their field."But what is missing?" Sanders went on provocatively. "Is there a killer app that prevents you from running Linux 24x7 on your main machine?"There was a momentary … [Read more...] about LINUX BLOG SAFARI Does Linux Lack a Killer App?