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The ball is roling - kinda...

So I'm busy with exams and don't really have the time to post anything technical yet. I do however felt that the two groups I started need to get some kind of momentum - so I posted one question I'm interested in on each group.

Check it out:

I hope to actually contribute something more technical from my side within the next week :-)

Difference between USB and IEEE 1394?

Let me start this off with the disclaimer that this was an apples to oranges comparison (or in this case an Apple to Dell comparison). The reason I thought this was interesting is that there was far more variation than I expected, on the MacBook anyway.

 The machines have similar processors (Intel Core Duo), with the MacBook having a slight edge, 2.0 GHz as opposed to the Dells 1.8 GHz.  However, the Dell has 3 GB of ram as opposed to the Macbooks 1 GB.

 Anyway, I have been trying to get the project I have been working on ( to run on my wife's MacBook with Mac OS X. I have done all of the development on GNU/Linux and it runs very well on all of the versions of GNU/Linux I have tried. I have been using these Western Digital 1 TB external hard drives for storage.  They have both USB and Firewire connections and I have used both on Linux and never noticed any difference (but I had never tested to see if there was any real difference).

A few nights ago I got it compiled and working on the MacBook, but when I tried to store files with the MacBook it was painfully slow.  It was so slow that it was unusable for what I was trying to do.  So this morning I decided to run a test to see if I could figure out what was happening.  I connected the WD drive with the USB cable to the MacBook, prep'd it and stored 111 photos (384 MB).  These are the times:

    real    17m3.569s
    user    2m17.587s
    sys     0m31.001s

Then I wondered if the problem was the USB connection so disconnected the drive and reconnected it with the Firewire cable and imported exactly the same 111 files.  It was 4X faster than it was with the USB connection:

    real    4m10.148s
    user    2m1.636s
    sys     0m28.276s

I thought this was pretty weird because I had never noticed that much difference between USB and Firewire when running on GNU/Linux.   So then I had to run the same test again to see.  I ran the USB test first, with the same 111 files:

    real    1m57.584s
    user    1m31.102s
    sys    0m6.368s

And with Firewire:

    real    1m58.318s
    user    1m32.070s
    sys    0m6.996s

I thought it was interesting that there was such a significant difference between Firewire and USB on the MacBook, but not on the Dell.  I have decided I will have to get a Mac and install Linux on it and then compare Apples to Apples, so to speak.




Hi everybody at Looking forward to get to know you.

Kill the clients.

Heres a trivia for you all. Whats the single thing that creates most of the problems in an enterprise setting and what is it that demands such high level of conformity on the workstations? Why is it so hard in getting Linux into a organisation built on Windows technology?

 Its not security, management or  costs that makes corporations spend silly sums on certifying workstations and images. Its all about making various clients for databases work on the computers. Most clients are no more than very simple logic ontop of a database. Still very many of the client software demands a specific OS, a specific version and a specific level of patches. Add to that a good likelyhood that another client application demands another set of patches and your in for some really fun game of minefield.

 If more corporations would demand web applications (not .exe files disguised as web apps like .net or ActiveX) this problem would go away pretty fast. It would also solve the problem as old as the computers themselves, how do i access my stuff from outside the office, at home or  from abroad? A web application demands nothing more of the connecting computer than a browser if done right.

 The "problem" with Linux in most corporate enviroment isnt Linux itself at all. Its that it doesnt support the client applications.  The same goes for using any other OS for that matter.  Netbooks, smartphones and pretty much any gadget with a browser is out of the question without serious money poured into a ported client application to that perticular gadget. We are prisoners to our own networks more or less and cant really use all the various new exciting technology at all. The apps keeps us ten years back in time.

 Killing the client software is essential in freeing our networks and i strongly suspect Microsoft has long since realised this. The moment the database in the backend is decoupled from specialized client software and instead coupled to a webserver the race is more or less over except for games. 

 Nobody really wants policies, profiles, patchlevels, .msi packages and the living hell it creates but its just not possible making things work with the current model of connecting to our backends.

 What we in the open source community can do to better this is to not fall for the local client model and build all our services for the web. Things like Evolution, OpenOffice Base and Thunderbird should be  thrown in the dust bin and replaced with excellent web interfaces instead. Why would we want to create the same mess thats already rampant on the other side?


A bit of opinion

Well I just joined's community and I thought it would be nice to share a bit of opinion of the whole layout.


 I think they did great setting this up, it should bring the community closter together. I do like the general site, I just have to get use to it. 


So congratulations to the employees for creating a great networking site.


To print n lines of a file

To print N lines of a file from <start> to <end>


sed -n '<start>,<end> p' filename


To print line 10 to 20 from the file knol.txt
sed -n '10,20p' knol.txt
To print line 10 to end from the file knol.txt

sed -n '10,$p' knol.txt

To print nth line of a file

sed -n 'p' filename



Linux Mint Neueinstieg

Vor einigen Tagen bin ich nun von Ubuntu 9.04 auf die aktuelle Beta-Version von Linux Mint 7 umgestiegen und muss sagen, dass ich sehr begeistert bin. Eigentlich ist Linux Mint nichts anderes als Ubuntu mit ein paar Modifikationen, wie beispielsweise das Mint-Menü oder  die veränderte Software-Verwaltung namens mintinstall.

True Blood

In the last few days i watched the first season of True Blood. The story is a bit weird but somehow it gets interesting nevertheless and i enjoyed it.

 The story basically it that japanese scientists found a way to produce blood so that vampires can have a life like everyone else except that they are immortal and sleep while the sun is shining, of course. The "heroine" of the story is Sookie Stackhouse who can read thoughts and is the only one in the town who is open minded enough to hang around with a vampire.

If you now think "Oh, i like Twilight i have to watch this.", don't watch it you will be very disappointed. For those of you how think that a vampire story could be interesting but don't like Twilight True Blood might be worth watching.

Anyway midnight just passed so i will end this post and go to bed. I have to wake up in 6 and half an hour to write my last and most important english exam for this year.

P.S.:The link stuff in this editor is definitly to complicated in 99.9% of all cases. Seriously who needs all these options?


My First Linux Install

I think I performed my first Linux install in 1995.  I know it was done using the slackware distribution.   It took about 35 floppy disks which I downloaded at the University of Kansas Herb Harris Computer Lab.   I installed on my only computer which was a 386sx with probably a 20 megabyte hard drive and about 8 megabytes of RAM.  I'm pretty sure it was only 8MB because I remember thinking that if I had 16MB then I could run X Windows.


Just got here to - Heard about it from the LinkedIn group and I think it's great!!!

 Loving it!



Sometimes, you need to kill boars to succeed

I just watched a funny South Park episode about World of Warcraft. In it, the boys need to kill a countless amount of (virtual) boars in order to become strong enough to save the World (of Warcraft).

That got me to thinking about what Linux and OSS needs a lot of right now. We've got super smart people, and great software. But to pull it all together, it'll require killing a lot of boars.

That means there needs to be better documentation (even if only consolidating wisdom that's scattered across forums), more polish, and other generally "un-fun" stuff. I've done a lot of work with printers. Considering I don't personally own a printer, that is killing a boar. Nevertheless, the printer languages, performance, and whatnot still need to be documented.

Essentially, to bring Linux to the big time, we're all going to have to kill some boars.

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