Knuth Plans 'Earthshaking Announcement' Wednesday
No, that won't happen until Zeno moves.
Songbird Drops Linux Support
I've seen a lot of posts that are essentially saying, "good riddance." However, I will miss Songbird. Let me tell you why.
When Songbird was first released, it ate through way too much memory for me to be able to use it in Linux. I love the features though, so I kept checking back as new releases came out. By about version 1.0 or so, the memory leaks were taken care of, and it was a great music player! It has far more features than Rhythmbox, especially for managing your song library and meta-data (I have about 12,000 songs, so I appreciate this). As compared to Amarok, it knocked it out of the park. Amarok crashed for me all the time (I've heard it doesn't do well with large libraries), I personally find it ugly, and the layout is unnecessarily cluttered. Songbird has worked like a dream after they fixed their beta-version issues. It's nice to look at, easy to use, very customizable, and should also make iTunes users feel at home (although it has many, many advantages over iTunes).
So Songbrid, I will miss you. I'll keep your current version on my system for as long as I can, but with my distro upgrades, etc., you will probably be swept away within a few years. So long, and thanks for all the music.
Apple's Trend Away From Tinkering
ResEdit was always my argument in Mac vs. PC arguments! (This was back in the good old System 7 days.) My PC friends could bring up right-clicking, software availability, etc., etc. all day. Then I would show them some of the stuff I'd done with ResEdit (e.g., remake Oregon Trail into a parody version of itself), and I would win the argument hands down. (OK, maybe you could do the same stuff on a PC, but none of us knew how.)
These days, I'm a Linux guy, but it's sad to me that Macs are getting more locked up all the time. I guess someone has to satisfy the demands of the just-do-it-for-me consumers, but I'm sad that it turned out to be Apple.
Some Early Adopters Stung By Ubuntu's Karmic Koala
I've been an early adopter in the past, but right now, I can't risk stability issues. I only have one computer, and if it's not running, I can't do my work. I'm willing to spend a few hours installing, but I don't have time to spend an entire day ironing out bugs. Surely things should stabilize within a few weeks or months. Does anyone have a suggestion as to how long I should wait? (I plan to do a fresh install.)
Web Open Font Format Gets Backing From Mozilla
Will we finally see an adequate, standardized implementation of LaTeX online? The lack of such an implementation was recently lamented by Fields Medal winner Terrance Tao on his blog:
Ballmer: Don't Expect Simpler Licensing Soon
"I'm sure we have fine print we don't need. We're not saints..."
Yes, because saints are always so clear and unambiguous, and never include sayings that aren't needed.
How To Help a Friend With an MMO Addiction?
You just described my life, almost exactly (except that I don't have a smartphone). It's 2:24AM on Sunday, and I'm reading articles online for no reason at all. Actually, I opened this one to see if anyone had good advice for kicking addictive habits.
While it's probably good to stay informed, I probably read about 300 headlines a day (who knew there was that much news?). It's totally taking over my life (grades dropping, girlfriend unhappy, me up at night for no reason), and I really can't seem to stop it. It seems simple: "Just don't do it." But apparently addiction doesn't work that way. I've even been seeing a counselor and a psychiatrist about it, but it continues.
Damn you, Internets!
Family To Sell Cave Home On eBay
I don't know, it seems to be a nice little hole-in-the-wall place.
Learning To Read With Click and Jane
OK, the whole point in the chapter in 'Freakonomics' was that while the number of books in a child's home IS CORRELATED with how well they do on school tests, IT IS NOT A CAUSAL RELATIONSHIP. Essentially, families that put an emphasis on learning tend to have both smart kids and a lot of books, but simply having a lot of books around does not appear to make children smarter.
The person who quoted 'Freakonomics' in this article either intentionally misrepresented the point, or (more likely) completely missed the point. The point was that we should quit spreading the exact fallacy that is being spread here.