Linux Mint on my netbook

Thanks to Sandeep at office and today I have Linux Mint installed on my netbook. The netbook is a Lenovo S10-3 which I plan to use at home as most of the times I am living in the cloud. Normally I would have installed Ubuntu but thanks to Pranav’s recommendation, I decided to try this one out. How does it feel? Quite similar to Ubuntu after all this is Kubuntu so not much changes from the features but the UI is different. Is it lighter than Ubuntu? Does not seem so. I thought Xubuntu was lighter…. But I am enjoying it and this post is from Linux Mint & Opera as the browser (The default browser was firefox but I am not a great fan of that. Prefer to use Google Chrome but this was experimental so Opera).

Meaningless Meeting Requests?

I am an ardent fan and try to make the most of the free Google Apps (eat your heart out – those who did not grab the offer when it was free). As a matter of fact I have migrated from MS Outlook to Thunderbird and thereon from Windows to Ubuntu thanks to the cross-platform working of the open source applications. One of them is Google Calendar and the meeting request is a feature in there just as we would expect to find it in any calendaring application of these days. I make it a point to send meeting requests (MRs) and insist on others also sending MRs just so that I accept it and it is there in my calendar as well as the other side. I also make it a point to get the mobile # where possible and mention mine in the MR. People do tend to accept the MR in the affirmative almost immediately and then since they have accepted, it is  a given that the meeting is on. But alas, how wrong I am…. People have ever so often agreed to meetings after scheduling them in Bangalore / Delhi when I am in Mumbai and planned my trip. But at the appointed hour, they simply are not around. “Oh, I am unwell and so have not come into office today. Have you reached office?” or “I am sorry I had to leave for an urgent business meeting”. I have had such a terrible experience with this one person who hasn’t honoured his meeting commitment thrice and now I don’t even call him up. Why don’t people understand that just as your time in valuable so is our time. And since the contact details are mentioned, why not just inform in advance? Even a 30 minute advance intimation would be appreciated but well appreciation too seems to be lacking. What do I say? Un-professionalism seems to be rampant these days.

A year since migration to Thunderbird

February 19, 2011 was the day I completed a year of migration from MS Outlook to Thunderbird. While I continue to remain an ardent fan of MS Outlook, that does not mean I am against Thunderbird. They have their own pros and cons with the cost going against MS Outlook.

Let me admit it was not an easy transition but I set the ball rolling in office by migrating and gradually others followed suit or was it that they were forced to follow…. There are still features that you do not find in Thunderbird but then I have survived without them so am now all set for Thunderbird. Post the migration out from MS Outlook, I took the plunge and moved out of Windows to Ubuntu and Open Office. Again this transition had its fair share of challenges but team members were receptive to this move and so we have ported quite a lot of desktops onto Ubuntu.

Edubuntu it is…..

Edubuntu is the educational flavour of Ubuntu and it is simply too good as a teaching aid to teach children. Kavya has an upcoming maths assessment and as a part of that she is expected to know tables of 2, 5 and 10 randomly. Came across this wonderful option, Tux Math in Edubuntu in which you can select the  tables and randomly questions will fall like the space missiles or whatever. You punch in the correct answer and hit enter and it goes and destroys the falling missile. The level keeps going up and it is fun to play. Kavya could complete the task and at the end was so excited by “Congratulations. You Win”. Then I would ask her “You want to play again?” Obviously the answer was a Yes and so changed the number and got her to solve the tables. All in all it was a game she was playing while she was studying….. Another reason for cheering Ubuntu and Edubuntu.

Switching over to Linux

Thanks to Bhavesh for sending me this article. It is something that I have gone through honestly when I switched over from Windows to Ubuntu (No I did not venture anywhere else near Fedora or such). Worth going through for anyone who is toying with the idea of a switch.

Opensource finally

I have finally migrated to Ubuntu last week and it marks a transition after decades of “non open source” usage. It is definitely a mind shift change as you are so used to certain features and here you have to dig out where it exists (maybe if someone using Ubuntu for so long would migrate to the other end, he too would find the same challenges). I would recommend a switch for all users like me who are only using Internet, e mails and the Office suite functionality. Yes there are some software which do not work with open source but then we can always find alternatives….. A change for the better….