March 17, 2008

Celebrate St. Patrick's Day, Linux-style

Author: Lisa Hoover

Today is St. Patrick's Day, a national holiday in Ireland that's celebrated by people of Irish lineage worldwide. Like Ireland itself, the holiday is associated with the color green -- as are many things in the Linux universe.

Since Linux is perfect for resurrecting old hardware and making it functional again, it could really be considered green in the sense of being eco-friendly (and is poised to become more so in the coming months). Some companies, though, are taking that concept to the next level. Zonbu has its own line of "earth-loving, zero-emissions" PC and laptops that come preloaded with a customized version of Gentoo Linux. Of course, you can always build your own machine using the most energy-efficient parts you can find.

If you're planning on installing a new flavor of Linux today in honor of St. Patty's Day, green-hued distro openSUSEwill put your system in the holiday spirit. If you're looking for an authentically Irish distro, try Linux Mint or Blue Linux, whose main development teams are both based in Ireland.

If you want to celebrate the day while working remotely from the Irish pub down the street, then take OLPC's XO laptop with you. Its green and white shell will help you blend right in with the shamrock-wearing people around you.

You may not be able to lay your hands on Trolltech's Greenphone this year. Originally developed as a method to showcase the phone's operating system, Qtopia, only a limited number of Greenphones were produced. Though some units remain in circulation, Trolltech announced last October that its inventory had sold out and the company would no longer offer the model, but its SDK is still available.

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