Blog - Random thoughts and opinions about free and open source software, and bits of behind the scenes information en-us 60 Privacy Implications of Transparent Pixels If you leave this option checked when you export your image, any pixels you erased will be saved in the exported image. They will not be truly erased, just made fully transparent. In other words, the data that describes the color of each pixel will be preserved, they will just be made invisible. This option has privacy implications. With it enabled, what you erase from an image may still be present in transparent pixels. November 15th, 2019 HashOver Gets a Logo! Over the past few days I've been in talks with a nice fellow named Kamil Jablonski, a concept artist, graphic designer, and web developer who recently contributed a Polish locale for HashOver. He shared with me a logo design for HashOver, that after some back and forth became, in my opinion, a very cool design. May 2nd, 2015 Regarding and Its Share Button It was some time ago when I wrote the original share button for, back then enjoyed quite a lot of traffic and user activity, but more than that it was also developed heavily and was praised by many, including myself, for being technologically impressive whilst allowing easy online conversations and communication. September 17th, 2014 Did Brendan Eich Contribute to Firefox's Decline? This may sound like analyzing yesterday's news, but I think it's important, and more than that I need to put this here as a resource to point certain people to. August 25th, 2014 The NSA backdoor in "Linux" Considering that the Linux kernel (the only component Linus has any kind of control over), the software from the GNU Project, and all of the most popular third-party software available for GNU/Linux is all free and open source, it is ridiculous that people can even believe the notion that Linus Torvalds, solely, could put a backdoor in "Linux." July 16th, 2014 The popularity of Firefox is definitely waning! Has Firefox's popularity really waned? The answer is a definitive "Yes." Statistically, however, so has every other web browser except for Google Chrome. The fact Net Applications calculates Internet Explorer's market share to be 58.38% is laughable. Likewise, 19.34% for Google Chrome is erroneously wrong and potentially deceptive. July 9th, 2014 Critique of Gedit Syntax Highlighting + PHP Color Schemes I've always liked PHP's default syntax highlighting, that is to say the color scheme used by highlight_file(). I've often found myself easily grokking code examples on when, say, looking up the parameter order for something like imageconvolution(), only to suffer some frustration once going back to Gedit. June 25th, 2014 Stop Complaining, Gedit Is Better Than Ever People have been complaining about gEdit 3.12, which recently moved into Debian's "testing" repository. Specifically, they're complaining about the GUI. Many have lamented the old-style icon menu, which was removed, as is similarly being done to Totem (Videos), Nautilus (Files), and Disk Utility (Disks), among others. May 6th, 2014 XX != Years of Linux There's a big problem with this "20 Years of Linux" graph, and many "XX Years of Linux" graphs as most all show an incomplete history or timeline of events and milestones. The one below for example. February 6th, 2014 Making a Change I set out to achieve this "professional" look and feel with TildeHash; I set out to write about things I thought were important, and I now realize that not only am I terrible at writing professional quality articles but that I enjoy sharing random ideas, posting commentary and opinions more than writing "about something." September 9th, 2013 Firefox's Inspector Tool as 3D Modeler (Seriously) Firefox 20.0 -- and a couple of earlier versions I think -- has a nifty little feature of its "Inspector" tool that allows you to view HTML elements as 3D objects. This lets you graphically see the DOM structure and how elements lay against one another. As soon as the feature appeared I knew what I wanted to do with it, I wanted to use it for something it wasn't intended for: 3D Modeling. May 6th, 2013 Simple PHP Diff Script - Shows Line Changes in Bold Text Here's a simple PHP diff script I wrote for no particular reason. Its output is similar to how Wikipedia does it, though admittedly, a lot simpler and inferior. It works really well for predictable comparisons, like two files that are mostly the same or a directory listing where some files have been renamed, added or removed. However, I have no use for it, I was simply trying for proof of concept. Even if I have no use for it, somebody might, right? May 27th, 2012 Introducing the Humble Deteriorating Bundle! I can proudly say I purchased the first Humble Bundle (the "Humble Indie Bundle"), and I can say I'm glad to have not purchased the last seven. Why? I know what you're thinking, "It's a good deal, and it's monetary motivation for developers to port their games to Linux, and remove any pre-existing DRM." Yeah, yeah, but that's nothing compared to the first Humble Bundle. December 16th, 2011 New Share Button still doesn't have a proper share button. For a long time I've looked for a good share button. One like Twitter's, one that: displays a count of posts, and lets people share the page with the post automatically containing the page title and URL. I looked so long without finding anything that I wrote one myself. And I've talked a little bit about the half-PHP-half-JavaScript share button that I wrote, but I really haven't shown it off or explained how to use it. It's kind of pointless to write it just for myself. June 30th, 2011 Potential For Free Animation Software Dead? There was a time when I was obsessed with finding good, free, stable, Adobe Flash animation software, because at the time I was also obsessed with Homestar Runner and other online cartoons and I wanted to make my own. This was before I knew about how much hassle Flash actually is across multiple platforms and long before I knew of the disadvantages of making online animations in proprietary formats. June 24th, 2011 Track Me! Just Track Me, GNOME Project! The upcoming GNOME 3 release will be making some controversial changes, such as removing the Window List from the panel making for a more "task-based environment" as they say. They're also removing the minimize and maximize window control buttons and desktop icons. March 1st, 2011 Web Development, Better Done On GNU/Linux I often tell people that setup, configuration, writing, scripting, and other general development of any website is better done on the same web server, or at least the same operating system that is installed on the web server that the site is going to be hosted and ran on, rather than developed elsewhere and simply dropped in place later. It doesn't matter whether you're using Apache or Windows Server, GNU/Linux or Windows. February 18th, 2011 Interview with Richard Stallman (2011) Richard M. Stallman (born March 16, 1953), often shortened to RMS, is an American software freedom activist and computer programmer. In September 1983, he launched the GNU Project to create a free Unix-like operating system, and has been the project's lead architect and organizer. With the launch of the GNU Project, he initiated the Free Software Movement; in October 1985 he founded the Free Software Foundation. Richard Stallman pioneered the concept of Copyleft and he is the main author of several copyleft licenses including the GNU General Public License, the most widely used Free Software license. Here is my email interview with him. February 7th, 2011 Why Indie Games Need GNU/Linux Indie games are not very popular, on any platform. They are independent of the big game companies like EA, id Software, Infinity Ward, and Crytek. Thus they also lack the kind of funding these companies have. Windows users started taking games for granted a long time ago. With Windows being the dominant operating system, Windows users know that high quality commercial games have to have Windows versions, so when an indie game comes out, with an average price of $20, they seem too expensive to most people using Windows. As evidence, the average price Windows users are paying for the recent "Humble Indie Bundle #2" is $6.63. December 24th, 2010 Too Many Shoot 'Em Up Games We have a few great Free Software gaming engines now, like DarkPlaces used in Nexuiz; Cube 2 used in Sauerbraten; Qfusion used in Warsow; id Tech 3 used in Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare, Quake 4, Doom 3; soon id Tech 4 which is used in Enemy Territory: Quake Wars along with many others; and HPL1 used in Frictional Games' Penumbra trilogy series. December 11th, 2010 GNOME Terminal - Command Summary [Mockup] So we all know that users who are new to the command-line find it intimidating, no matter what operating system, they just find it intimidating. These users are the kind of people who never used early Unix or MS-DOS, they were introduced to computers with graphics and point-and-click interfaces. November 19th, 2010 Minecraft Inspired By Cube 2: Sauerbraten? The proprietary game "Minecraft", which is written in Java, may have been inspired by Sauerbraten (also known as "Cube 2"). Minecraft is a browser-based first person "Sandbox" style adventure game where you can connect with other players over the Internet and build constructions out of textured cubes in a 3D world. This kind of game isn't new, in fact if you've ever searched the Internet for Free multi-platform first person shooters, you've probably heard of Cube 2: Sauerbraten. November 12th, 2010 Advanced Application Launchers With Zenity If you're like me, you hate when you're in a hurry and just want to start an application, get right to it, and just start working. Well it never works that way when you need it to. You have to start the application then navigate to the directory containing either the various subdirectories or the file(s) you'll need to work on, before you can even start. Wouldn't it be nice to just start the application at the navigation stage? Well you can. As well as: graphically feed text to Espeak or Festival, graphically display a command's output like a directory listing or a file's contents, graphically start a web browser at a specific website like a Google search with your input, and so much more! This is basic BASH and Zenity, so don't worry, it's easy! November 7th, 2010 State of Firefox 4.0 on GNU/Linux So we've probably all seen the mock-ups for Firefox 4.0 by now, but has any of it been implemented? In the Windows version, yes. On the GNU/Linux version, partially. And it looks like it's going to stay that way. I'm going to show you what's different in the current development version (nightly 4.0b8pre) from 3.6. October 16th, 2010 Problems Don't Always Need Command-line Solutions We see it all the time, someone straying from one distribution or another because you "have to use the command-line". I've even heard that in person, I've heard it too many times. So, I looked around to see what may be causing this impression, and sure enough it didn't take long to find. October 8th, 2010 KDE 3 appears in 'The Social Network' movie? Below is a still image from the The Social Network official trailer, in it you can see what appears to be an old version of the KDE Desktop Environment. This particular still image is from a scene in the movie taking place in 2003, so KDE 3 would be an accurate version for the year. September 9th, 2010 Why I'm Reinventing Disqus Why am I reinventing Disqus? That is the question I've been getting asked since I "announced" on that I'd be replacing Disqus with a free (AGPL) comment system that I was to write. Well, I am not the inventor of Disqus, so technically I can't reinvent something I didn't forehand invent. And because I'm not about to run a service for millions of people, my comment system won't have accounts (though it will have the possibility of setting a password so that only certain persons can post with their certain names.) July 21st, 2010 LiveUSB Drives: Why, How-to, and Where At I'll just get this out right now, I love Live USB drives. Yes, and if you don't yet, you will. What fills an entire CD, only fills 17% of a 4GB thumb drive (8% of an 8GB, 4% of a 16GB, 2% of a 32GB, and so on). And you don't have to throw them away when you're done using them or if they're outdated, you just reinstall. July 3nd, 2010 BASHing Visual Basic Out of the Picture Awhile ago, two family members of mine were programming something for a simple task, they chose to do it in Visual Basic as the program was going to be running in a Windows environment anyway. The task was having a simple program that would run in the background -- or ran when needed -- to print a specific file (or multiple files) whenever the file(s) changed, specifically, whenever the file was modified. This was being done on a Windows system so file changes related to permissions, ownership, etc, didn't apply. June 28th, 2010 5 Ways is Better Than Twitter Twitter popularized micro-blogging, indeed, but it isn't fair to say they started it. There are many other micro-blogging services, such as Tumblr, Plurk, Jaiku, and -- my favorite -- What I like most about is its focus on software related topics (well, that isn't its intended focus, but its users' apparent focus.) That said, is also basically Twitter's liberated equivalent. June 21st, 2010 Meritocracy vs. Democracy June 11th, 2010 A Windows-style Fix to a WINE Problem The problem with emulating Windows -- or since "WINE Is Not an Emulator" I should say: the problem with developing a "Windows Compatibility Layer" -- is you end up having the same problems Windows has. If WINE is compatible with anything, it seems to be mostly with Windows' flaws :) June 10th, 2010