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GNOME 3 Wins Linux Journal's Readers' Choice Award

sarhjinian Re:no no no (378 comments)

Possibly because he's serving up X applications?

more than 2 years ago
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GNOME 3 Wins Linux Journal's Readers' Choice Award

sarhjinian Re:Touch friendly (378 comments)

Or press the Windows/Super key. I use that feature a lot.

more than 2 years ago
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Dell Kills Streak 7, Bails On Android Tablets

sarhjinian Re:Android = trash (232 comments)

Android tablets are being subsidized by carriers. The iPad is not.

more than 2 years ago
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Dell Kills Streak 7, Bails On Android Tablets

sarhjinian Re:Android = trash (232 comments)

I wasn't "being stupid". This is a discussion about the Steak 7, which is a tablet. The post I replied to was about the Xoom, which is a tablet. I referenced the Transfomer and the PlayBook, which are tablets.

There's no conflation of the two going on.

And yes, you're right to note that, while Android works very well on phones, it's been, well, let's be honest, a commercial failure on tablets, with even the best-of-breed examples competing on price and selling only when they hit fire-sale pricetag levels, and that the reason isn't due to marketing or consumer stupidity, but because the product really hasn't been very competitive, and that's the fault of Google and the OEMs.

And no, that's not the case with Android phones because the OEMs seem to try harder and Google's offering doesn't have that "premature" feeling.

more than 2 years ago
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Dell Kills Streak 7, Bails On Android Tablets

sarhjinian Re:Android = trash (232 comments)

350,000 Android devices being activated each day

Those are mostly phones, not tablets. I actually quite like most Android phones, but the tablet experience has not been a good one (I'm on my second, now, a Xoom, after the failure that was the Optimus Pad). Android fans need to be honest with themselves: the product was rushed out the door by Google, and made worse by OEM incompetence/indifference/opportunism.

I am hoping ICS helps out, but I was not at all impressed with Honeycomb, to the point where I thought the PlayBook was a better experience for casual use.

more than 2 years ago
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Dell Kills Streak 7, Bails On Android Tablets

sarhjinian Re:Android = trash (232 comments)

All the other companies like.... who?

Asus shipped a fair number of Transformers (where "a fair number" is "an order of magnitude or more less than Apple) but that's it. Most of the Android tablets are commercial failures, and the top-selling tablet, aside from, well, you know, is the HP TouchPad. I suspect the PlayBook (which sells about what the Xoom does, FWIW) might take that title next.

I'd also add that many Android tablets wouldn't sell at all were it not for the carrier-contract offsets and occasional firesale.

I'd blame Google and the OEMs for this. Honeycomb was kind of, well, unpleasant out of the box, and the hack-job systems integration done by the OEMs only made matters worse.

more than 2 years ago
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First Quad-Core Android Tablet Reviewed

sarhjinian Re:Touch lag (218 comments)

No, most of the Android tablets that are more or less on-par with the iPad feel draggy and occasionally glitch. You might not notice, but just about every reviews, and lots of consumers, do.

On some tablets, it's so bad that I can't imagine anyone actually used it before they kicked it out the door. They just checked off boxes on a feature sheet and called it a day. I mean, these are web-browsing devices first and foremost---what does it say when you can barely type into some web forms and the browser feels unpleasant to use.

About the closest to the iPad is RIM's PlayBook. It doesn't have the draggy interface problem. It does have other issues, lots of them, but in RIM's defense they got the fundamentals right. Android, especially on tablets, is shaping up a lot like Windows Mobile: a negligent parent company, a number of stack'em-high-and-sell'em-cheap OEMs and, occasionally, a pigheaded carrier thrown into the mix.

I'm hoping Google's acquisition of Motorola forces the other OEMs to up their game.

more than 2 years ago
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Linux Mint 12 Released Today

sarhjinian Re:It's the apps (396 comments)

Panel might be doable, but Compiz needs to be shot. Honestly, most of the problems I have with video and 3D playback on Linux are fixed by "turn off Compiz". I'm personally glad it's impossible to port it GNOME3, and I worry that Ubuntu is going to choke for basing so much of Unity on it.

I don't think I've ever gotten tear-free playback on Compiz with nVidia or ATI drivers. On Mutter it worked, first go, no screwing around with two different sync-to-vblank options that don't work, no wrong refresh rates. Just video playback on par with Windows or MacOS.

more than 2 years ago
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Linux Mint 12 Released Today

sarhjinian Re:Have you actually tried to use GNOME 3? (396 comments)

In all honesty, have you actually tried to use GNOME 3?

All the time.

So much so that I find myself tapping the Windows key in every other OS and wishing it would show me all open windows. Whoever thought that one out is brilliant: hit the key, boom, there's everything you're running, hit it again, boom, back to the original window, if you don't select one of the others. Hit it, boom, all windows again, pick one, boom, it's there. Hit it again, close a few, hit it, boom, back where we were.

Brilliant. Beats the snot out of alt-tabbing and the myriad of Expose ripoffs.

GNOME3 has some significant rough edges (some config options aren't exposed, the font size choices in the list of apps is troublesome, NetworkManager is messed up and notification is whack, hard dependencies on Evolution in Fedora bug the hell out of me) but there's some really, really good ideas there.

What I've found is that, well, people don't like change. I admit it made me uncomfortable, but I also found I didn't get fed up fighting little idiosyncracies like I do with KDE, or the sense that it's really, really under-developed (Unity). It was a few days of "huh" and then it worked.

more than 2 years ago
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HP's Strange Obsession With WebOS For Printers

sarhjinian Re:We B OS (226 comments)

It's not the gruntwork of rasterizing---I agree you could write a decent rasterizer that isn't a buggy piece of crap. The problem was that people are complaining about huge printer driver sizes, and part of the reason is the rasterizer/interpreter needs to be included.

The other point is that, well, on-host rasterization is usually a trait of poor-quality printers. It's not a direct correlation, just a harbinger, and it's not the fault of on-host rasterization, but if you avoid it and get printers that do this on-device you'll get a smaller driver and a better printer. You'll just pay more for it.

more than 2 years ago
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HP's Strange Obsession With WebOS For Printers

sarhjinian Re:We B OS (226 comments)

This.

The cheaper printers are just that: cheap. They offload most of the rasterization onto the host PC, have no job control features and are generally awful. Ethernet-capable printers usually, but don't always, help, because printer makers are shovelling out some awful crap.

You can still get small print drivers for HP's modern printers. The problem is that those printers are expensive, but then again, so were the "Good ol' days" printers they replaced.

Here's a tip: check to see if the printer supports PJL (not just PCL) and/or PostScript (or a compatible derivative, like Kyocera's KPDL). If it supports PJL and/or PS, you can be guaranteed a) that the drivers will be small, b) that the printer will work pretty well, and c) that you'll pay for the privilege of A and B.

more than 2 years ago
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Are There Any Smartphones That Respect Privacy?

sarhjinian Re:Want Privacy? Get your own BES (478 comments)

Agreed. If you want absolute privacy, your own BES is the way to go.

And you can get BES Express for free (you lose some of management policies, but the core security stuff is there) though you'll need a mail/calendaring/contact server to hook it up to, which means (if you want to avoid Exchange) probably VMware's Zimbra.

more than 2 years ago
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Identifying Nuclear Scientists Willing To Sell Their Knowledge

sarhjinian Re:Everybody should have the weapons (358 comments)

I have a question: other than nationalising it's industry, exactly why is Venezuela lumped in with North Korea or Libya. Hugo Chavez is no angel, not by a longshot, but in the bastard rankings him, and his government, aren't particularly awful. Heck, there are much worse people whose boots we'll happily lick.

It's rather telling that a petroleum-producing state, and especially one in the western hemisphere, that shows a little backbone and follows the "wrong" economic doctrine, gets a disproportionate amount of scorn. I think it well and truly freaks out many American politicians, and the business interests that back them, that governments like Venezuela's can exist; governments that decide they don't feel like playing by the rules of the international economic game.

more than 2 years ago
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Intel's Plans For X86 Android, Smartphones, and Tablets

sarhjinian Re:Intel's Software Experience...Graphics (151 comments)

Even if they develop their own graphics chip for tablet use, it'll a) probably be enough for what you'd do on a tablet (seriously: on a desktop PC, for anything except gaming, Intel's stuff is good enough), and b) it depends on how well the software's done, anyway (case in point: on many recent Linux distros, and again, unless you're gaming, Intel's chipsets provide a better overall experience than much more capable nVidia or ATI hardware).

more than 2 years ago
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Linux Mint: the New Ubuntu?

sarhjinian Re:Definition of Linux is...muddled (685 comments)

PC-BSD has a respectable set of packages and a decent format. And ports isn't too bad. It's not great, either, but it's not bad.

more than 2 years ago
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Linux Mint: the New Ubuntu?

sarhjinian Re:It came down to the software. (685 comments)

There is something seriously, fundamentally, not right with Compiz. I can't think of a single version or distro I've used where it didn't have some problem or another with video playback, 3D, composting or something else. I've gotten close on Intel GMA on, I think, Ubuntu 9.10 or 10.04, but that's it.

Seriously. Mac OS X has had working, seamless, compositing window management for a decade or thereabouts. Compiz still sees video tearing, and it's far too common for people to say "Just turn off compiz" as a solution to too many problems. If Ubuntu has made a mistake, it's tying so much of Unity to Compiz. I get the feeling that decision will cause them real trouble.

more than 2 years ago
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Linux Mint: the New Ubuntu?

sarhjinian Re:How about Fedora? (685 comments)

Something I forgot to mention: it's a same Red Hat will not (and, at this point, with years of history and enterprise baggage, cannot) move from yum/rpm. Nothing in Fedora remotely compares to Synaptic (yumex comes close, and isn't that close at all, really) and Ubuntu has set the bar for consumer Linux higher still with Software Centre. The command line tools are mostly at parity (though virtual depedencies don't seem as elegantly handled; can't tell if that's an yum/rpm thing or Red Hat et al not sweating the details) but the GUI tools aren't even close.

It would be nice, and a good thing for Linux on the desktop, to move to Ubuntu's model.

more than 2 years ago
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Linux Mint: the New Ubuntu?

sarhjinian Re:How about Fedora? (685 comments)

It's likely a massive case of NIH. Red Hat, despite being significant contributors, seem to be a bit dicey on this kind of thing. One of the reasons Ubuntu didn't adopt gnome-shell and created Unity, has a lot to do with GNOME, and thusly Red Hat's, reticence. The thing applies to systemd's being chained to GNOME, which stands a pretty good chance of relegating GNOME 3 to Red Hat and Red Hat-ish distributions.

It's a real pity, too, because Red Hat has and does a lot of good stuff (GNOME 3, some weirdness aside, works very, very well). Package management and UI refinement just happen to _not_ be things that they're good at.

Canonical, to it's credit, has pushed the UI and user experience issue very well for Linux as a whole and raised everyone else's game as a result. Unity might not be their finest hour, but they are trying to meet the needs of most computer users and grow Linux in a way that most other vendors had not in the past (remember when UI development was "how blingy a theme can we make?", or KDE's tendency to cram as many controls per square inch as possible?), and it is improving, version after version.

Mint does it's own thing very well, too. What it is, though, ultimately, is a riff on Ubuntu for conservative technical people who already use Linux and for whatever reason aren't a fan of Canonical's design direction. That's fair, and a good thing, but it's not forward-thinking, and it's not a lot different from any one of a number of other distributions. It fills a niche, sure, but it's not the new Ubuntu, nor should it be.

more than 2 years ago
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Asus Unveils Quad-Core Transformer Prime Tablet

sarhjinian Re:Doubt it will cut into Apple (274 comments)

I don't actually have own an iPad now and am typing this, or trying to and having it stutter and lag, and on an LG Optimus Pad running Honeycomb. But the point is that salesnumbers, among nerds and non alike, the show the iPad far ahead, I and for good reason : it is better to use.

If "pointing out the obvious " is advertising, and then I'm sure guilty as charged.

Why not pressure Google into doing better instead of of burying your head in the sand and dismissing contradictory opinion-holders as sheep?

more than 2 years ago

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