Desktop users, developers, and reviewers all had their download managers aimed at the Firefox Web site Monday to grab Firefox 3 as soon as it launched and also help Mozilla set a world record. World record or not, the latest Firefox release is a world-class Web browser. It looks impressive, renders text and images better than its predecessor, and helps you browse safely. But while it delivers pages faster by cutting down crucial milliseconds, its memory footprint (in unscientific tests) is still as big as a yeti.
Flock is an intriguing new "social web browser" that is designed not just as a portal to the web, but to your friends' lives and the online communities where we share many of today's experiences. Launched with a 1.0 version based on Mozilla's Firefox code base in 2005, Flock has unveiled its first 2.0 beta that inherits all the performance and security enhancements in Firefox 3. Ars Technica goes hands-on with the Flock 2 beta to see what all the fuss is about.
Two of the four major browsers have undergone some big changes in the past two weeks. Firefox 3 is, of course, the big news of the week, pulling down eight million or so downloads in its first 24 hours in the wild. However, the Opera browser updated to its much-awaited version 9.5 last week. Since both of them have got game but for different reasons, let's take a look at how they match up.
Since Amarok 2 is on its way with all the fuss around it and the currently stable 220.127.116.11 version will probably be the last in the 1.x series, I decided to make a review of the last stable Amarok. Debian Lenny will ship with this version (or any later version before Amarok 2), probably making it the most stable Amarok experience up to date.
When it first starts, Songbird prompts the user to select default language and extensions it should load by default, downloading them if necessary. Scanning a music collection of almost 4000 OGG Vorbis songs took around 3 minutes on an Intel Core 2 Duo 1.8 GHz with 1 GB DDRAM2.
I’ve seen a lot of articles lately about the release of Banshee 1.0, the Gnome music player “written in C# on the Mono platform using GNOME technologies” (from the website). For some people the mono platform alone would be reason enough to bash Banshee, but I don’t care about that. I do get curious however when people claim that Banshee will replace Rhythmbox as the default Gnome media player on their system. I’ve used Rhythmbox. It’s pretty good. I was curious what Banshee had to offer.
Social networking browser, Flock, has reached the 2.0 milestone in beta status, bringing together all the major social networking sites in the one browser. Offering all the enhancements of Firefox 3.0, you’ll only be flocking to use this browser if you’re a big social networking user.
The open source Songbird music player took a big step forward on Friday with the official release of version 0.6, which significantly improves performance, augments support for media player devices, and reduces the program's memory footprint. Another noteworthy new feature is support for editing music metadata.
If you were waiting for Firefox 3.0, be glad, as the wait is now over! The final release is available for download, and you probably want to help Mozilla set that world record, so start downloading!
(Not yet a package, but still interesting enough to tell and hey: bleeding edge.) Circular Application Menu for Gnome is a Google Code hosted project providing a different access method to your Gnome menu. Actually all it does, is displaying the menu as circles:
Banshee 1.0 comes with many features, like a pretty good collection management, audio and video libraries, support for podcasts and many plugins, a notable one being the Last.fm integration and song submission.
Review of 20 essential KDE applications plus several additions: Amarok, KTorrent, K3b, Akregator and all the others.
For most hardcore gamers, Linux is taboo since they probably think that they cannot play their favorite Windows-only games with it. They do have a point of staying away from Linux, but if they knew that they can play some of their most wanted games on Linux, will they take the switch?
I used this player for about three years and I love it more and more, with each new release. Statistics show around 60% of the Linux users prefer Amarok over any other audio player. 60%! That's huge.
Last week at Computex Taipei the Canonical OEM team had unveiled Netbook Remix. Netbook Remix is based upon the stock package selection found in Ubuntu but with specific optimizations for Mobile Internet Devices and Ultra Mobile PCs. These optimizations include user-interface improvements for potentially new Linux users as well as making the desktop easier to work when running off a small screen.
There are dozens of nice music players around, that’s for sure. You can choose between featur rich killer applications like Rhythmbox or Amarok, use old-school but up to date standards like XMMS or even a console classic like mp3blaster. Most of the standard players have in common, that the interface and the player itself are the same. That’s normal and therefore everything is fine. But maybe you are in a situation where you prefer playing music on a remote machine, only have a console or just don’t want your music player to stay open while playing. Huh?
My granddaughter has been sitting on my lap at the computer since before she could even hold herself up. She was only a few months old when she became interested in the mouse and began learning to place the cursor on the screen. A friend of mine laughed at us and stated that I'd "have her compiling kernels by the time she was three." Well, she's three years old now, and though she's not compiling kernels yet, she is having hours of fun on her own thanks to Tuxpaint.
The object of the game is much the same as with tetris, only the frame and the falling objects are hexagons. You have to slot the coloured pieces together making rows, which disappear once they are complete, the game ends if the stack of pieces reaches the celling.
Ultimate Edition (UE) 1.8 is a remaster of Ubuntu Hardy Heron with custom software repositories and a distinctive theme. Its claim to fame over pure Ubuntu is convenience, due to preloaded updates and software. While the name might suggest that it is a huge upgrade over its progenitor, in reality its developers have not made many improvements besides application install scripts. Due to a distracting theme, a poorly built user interface, and an incredible lack of the convenience it claims to have, Ultimate Edition falls painfully short of ultimate.
Some people imagine that they could write a novel if only they had the right tool. StorYBook aims to be that tool, but falls short. The problem is not that StorYBook is poorly organized, or that its timeline and reports don't come in handy. Rather, the problem is that StorYBook has such a rigid structure that it is likely to fit only a minority of writers' plotting needs. For others, living with the rigidity and searching for ways around it is only likely to distract from planning and make it a chore rather than a creative thrill.