The Shotwell developers need small AVI files created by diverse cameras to improve metadata handling of such videos. If your camera creates AVI, consider uploading a short video in their wiki.This mail has the details.
Tuesday, November 30, 2010
Wednesday, November 10, 2010
Avaaz.org is a successful online community of over 5 million participants that often gathers signatures and donations for various causes - wildlife and environment preservation, revealing corruption, opposing exaggerated corporate lobbies, etc.
Many of their campaigns are raising awareness of women and girls being severely mistreated and threatened in various places in the world. Since gender inequality is a recurring topic on the planets, some may be interested in contributing to campaigns against systematic and even legally allowed abuse and discrimination; the latter is a much greater problem than those that the occasional disgruntled, tactless, supposedly funny or even blissfully unaware male geeks cause, making the FOSS world seem like a hostile place to women.
Saturday, November 06, 2010
Tuesday, November 02, 2010
As an experiment to see if it alleviates slight back pains, for the past four weeks I have been working standing. I don't use an actual standing desk but rather stacked a lot of cardboard boxes on my regular desk, then put the monitor, laptop, keyboard and mouse on top of them. It doesn't look good at all, so I won't provide a picture. Besides, the boxes carry the names and logos of various manufacturers and I don't want to spoil the post with product placement :)
The mouse sometimes falls on the floor but otherwise the setup is great.
I don't plan to go back to using a chair for computer work anytime soon.
Even if I stand 8-10 hours my legs don't mind and my back feels a lot better now. I felt improvements after a few days already. The lower back pain went away and there is almost no bother higher along the spine where I used to ache sometime after sitting - having a very bad posture, I admit, even though the chair is somewhat ergonomic.
I also feel like I can concentrate better standing but this may be unrelated.
Monday, November 01, 2010
Up until two months ago, had I been asked the question "Which is the open source project that you are least likely to ever contribute to?", I would have, without hesitation answered OpenOffice.org. Here by open source project I of course mean one of the reasonably popular ones not any random homework that has a COPYING file attached and uploaded to the internet.
One of the barriers is of course the large and mostly legacy C++ codebase, but in the case of OpenOffice it was a lack of a real independent community in charge of the project and the extensive control Sun had that made contributing unattractive. I have not experienced it first hand, but the fact that the project had such a reputation is probably telling of the manner in which it was ran. So do the piles of patches distributors had to maintain out of tree.
But since the LibreOffice fork the answer to that question is different. The OpenOffice people that initiated it made a few nice changes in order to break down the barriers.
- dropped the annoying contributor agreements
- restructured and migrated the code-base to git repositories (about 20, because of performance considerations apparently) on freedesktop.org
- started maintaining a very active wiki with potential easy tasks for newcomers and are very welcoming and helpful on the mailing list and IRC
I have also sent a trivial cleanup patch in that was accepted, so now I know that if I ever have an annoying bug in LibreOffice I will not treat it with a shrug as I would do with proprietary software and as until now but will feel confident diving in the code.
I'll also send a few more patches in of course, the list of tasks is huge.
Office software is unlikely to get one laid and I suspect the motivation of many of new contributors since the fork happened partly comes from seeing the project freed from corporate bureaucracy and a desire to show that better software can be created if it is ran as other meritocratic projects.