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Archive for October, 2010

Geeko Comes to Schools

October 17th, 2010 by

Yogyakarta is one of the tourism destination in Indonesia. The unique Javanise tradition blend with some acculturation from outside culture. Recently I was asked by the Ministry of Communication and Information Technology and Office of Education, Youth and Sport of Yogyakarta to help them to prepare the computer lab for elementary and junior high school in Yogyakarta Province – Indonesia.

Well, this is the tough job. I work with some expert, teacher and education strategist to prepare the e-learning system. We should prepare learning/teaching material in digital format, train the teacher to use authoring tools and operating system, and prepare the schools to be ready to receive the PC’s. This government initiative will involve 500 schools in 3 years. Every school that involve in this program will receive 21 PCs.

We select openSUSE Li-f-e as the operating system in every pc. The selection is not because I’m an openSUSE member but we come to the conclusion that openSUSE Li-f-e is the most complete and well prepare distribution for education (well, I convince other expert, some of them are Ph.D, he..he…). This year there are 110 schools involve in this program, this means another new 2310 openSUSE installation and more than 4000 new users if we assume that every PC will be used by 2 students.

Not only give PC to schools we also should connect the schools to the provincial data center. This is really challenging task, some areas of this province is covered by hundred of hills with karst topography and with no terestrial internet connection. Many of the schools is in that area. The road ahead still far away and difficult, but see the face of the children who really enthusiast with the openSUSE make me really happy.

There are more picture on my picasaweb

LibreOffice 3.3 beta2 available for openSUSE

October 15th, 2010 by

We are going to switch from the OpenOffice.org to the LibreOffice code base on openSUSE.

I’m happy to announce LibreOffice 3.3 beta2 packages for openSUSE. They are available in the Build Service LibreOffice:Unstable project. They are based on the libreoffice- release. Please, look for more details about the openSUSE LibreOffice build on the wiki page.

The packages are beta versions and might include even serious bugs. Therefore they are not intended for data-critical usage. A good practice is to archive any important data before an use, …

As usual, we kindly ask any interested beta testers to try the package and report bugs.

Known bugs

  • only the LibreOffice branding package is available; you need to replace OpenOffice_org-branding-openSUSE with libreoffice-branding-upstream
  • shell wrappers are still ooffice, oowriter, …; we need to discuss the new wrapper names with other distros first
  • application stops immediately when you start it for the first time; just start it once again
  • extensions are not registered after the update from OpenOffice_org-* packages; a workaround is to reinstall the packages once again; We plan to remove the registration during installation; it will allow users to disable the extensions by themselves
  • some packages were not renamed, .e.g. OpenOffice_org-thesaurus, …; they are not built from the main LO sources; we will do it later
  • user configuration is stored into ~/.libreoffice/3-suse; we might try to share the directory ~/.libreoffice/3 after we fix the incompatible BerkleyDB; Well, we are not sure if it is enough and it is a good idea, so it will need some more testing
  • packages can’t be installed in parallel with the generic LibreOffice linux packages; the problem is that both builds use the libreoffice-ure package name; it will be solved in beta3; a workaround is to install the package using “rpm -i” instead of “rpm -U”
  • GNOME quickstarter is started by default; you might disable it in Tools/Options/OpenOffice.org/Memory/Enable systray Quickstarter
  • SLED10 build is not available; need more love

More known bugs

Other information and plans:

These are the first packages with new name. Please, be patient if they are not perfect. Please report unknown bugs.

The new packages automatically remove the obsolete openSUSE OpenOffice_org packages. It still will be possible to intall the plain OpenOffice.org packages in parallel, though.

openSUSE Conference KDE Team Party

October 15th, 2010 by

Next week is openSUSE Conference week! I’m using both my openSUSE and KDE blogs to remind everyone that we’re having a pre-conference meetup at 6pm for the KDE team before the real conference begins at Barfüßer in the Nuernberg old town. Remember a morning of keynotes is only fun if you have a thumping hangover from microbrewed beer (and if you’re a keynote speaker, from local schapps too)! If you are attending the conference or if you are just a friend of KDE in the area, please join in.

If you add your name to the wiki I’ll have an idea how big a table we need, I’ve provisionally got space for 20.


October 13th, 2010 by

Hi folks,

this post is just request for all obs-packagers. Please, don’t forget write some documentation about your projects (which you maintain or develop). I mean, documentation for developers. This make more easy to understand logic of program, connection between some modules inside or interfaces between widget/applet and “system/hardware part”. For sure, comments in source code (or in changelog) help, but some times they give not so much clarity.

This is not so complicated to write one-two pages about project, which you hack. This also can save time of new developers. They will not ask you about architecture of project, and that will save your time too 😉

I don’t know how will be better to do it: use wiki (create a new page) or add just text-file in source project. Anyway it’s not so important where will be this documentation, main things that this documentation will be exist 🙂

systemd – and #osc10

October 8th, 2010 by

Systemd is a replacement for SystemV init and in heavy development since the first announcement on April 30th by Lennart Poettering. Thanks to Kay Sievers’ work, we have packages for openSUSE curent Factory stream as well. I gave them a try a couple of weeks ago but somehow did not succeed with getting a working system. At LinuxKongress I met Lennart and decided to give systemd another try. I still could not log into the system due to it using NIS and automount for NFS home directories and started debugging this together with Kay over IRC in a virtual machine first. Once we had a workaround for me, I used systemd on my workstation and Kay and Lennart fixed the problem in systemd properly. I run into a couple of more problems and thus were fixed quickly so that the last release – systemd 11 – works fine on my workstation running openSUSE Factory (Factory is the development version for the next openSUSE release, in this case for 11.4).

The role of init, whether it’s SysV init, upstart or systemd, is to initialize the system (it’s the first process that gets started by the kernel) so that users can login, starts all the essential services, e.g. the cups daemon for printing, and handles session management. So, it’s a system and session manager.

So, what’s so cool about systemd? (more…)

It’s good to visit Conferences

October 8th, 2010 by

This post is about why one should visit a conference at all and hopefully is a good read for people who haven’t been on a FOSS conference yet. For oldtimers this might be unbelieveable, but I remember perfectly how I thought “This conference sounds interesting, but its probably only for checkers, long term contributors, not for me”. Thanks god I had somebody convincing me that that’s wrong and pulled me to my first Akademy which was a great experience as well as all the other conferences I have been later.

The main thing that happens on conferences is learning. While sitting in workshops and presentations you can learn so much about technologies, and since you take the time to really listen to it, it sticks very good in your mind. If questions remain open, you can be sure to immediately find people who can help to clearify.

Learning often results in motivation because if you learned something you want to try it out. Since you again have time after the conference presentations and you are surrounded by others who are interested in the similar topics, the motivation grows to really put the hands on the keyboard and try things out.

Another motivational factor can be that people adjust your opinion about your own contribution, if you already did some. You might think your contribution is only small, not comparable and not so important. After having three people met who were thanking you for your work and telling you how important it was for them, you will feel the motivation boost. But attention – that sometimes works the other way round as well 😉

But that guides us to the most important thing: Meeting people in person, get to know each other, make friends. I know so many people from visiting conferences, and the quality of “knowing” is so much higher if a face, a smile, a good presentation or other things like funny clothes can be put to a name. Even people I do not know know me because I visited a conference once.

Working for and with people you know in person is much more pleasant as if you only know their email addresses. And we’re not talking about conflict situations which are so much easier to solve if you have met before.

openSUSE Conference 2010

Last but not least the possibility of influencing things must not be forgotten. Often on conferences things move forward, because the right people are on the same spot and discuss things and come to decisions. Believe it or not, it happens quickly that you end up in the circle of people if you want.

Ah yes, there is another reason why people like to come to conferences: It’s called ‘having fun’. I am not sure what is that about, but it must be cool 😉

Very soon the second international openSUSE Conference takes place in Nürnberg, Germany. If you are interested in the openSUSE project, the distribution or upstream projects, I really like to encourage you to conferencing give FOSS conferencing a try if you had never done it before. If you had, you will be there anyway 😉

Please do not hesitate and register now.

Adventures with Intel Atom D510 board

October 8th, 2010 by

For long I had been using my old laptop for everything; building images with KIWI, writing documents using LaTeX and Docbook XML, sorting my photos with Digikam. I have been upgrading since version 9.0 and at the moment opensuse 11.1 was the release ( OK with lots of new software thanks to the Build server. However, for some odd reason I wanted to have something new. Dangerous word, new is.

I have 2 Intel Atom’s running for my mail and web servers and I was quite happy with their performances, (by the way I am still happy). Hence I decided to ride the change train and bought the Intel D510 board

opensuse 11.3 Kde LiveCd worked fine and using Susestudio I designed my image. So far was really good. Booting the usb brought my feet back to earth. A frozen screen. So I tried the failsafe option and I had a 800X600 display. Reboot and this time trying “nomodeset” option same thing. Nevertheless I decided to give it a go ( I can always use it at run level 3).

Last night I have decided to include the Kernel:HEAD repo so I am using kernel-default-2.6.36-rc6.25.1.x86_64 along with the X11:XOrg repos using X.Org (1.9.1 RC 1) so now I have “1366×768 (the max my monitor can give) and I do not need to set “nomodeset” in the boot options anymore.

I have not tweaked everything yet, like my Logitech keyboard’s multimedia keys are useless in KDE at the moment.  At the end they will work one way or the other, I am sure.

Lesson Learned: do your homework well before jumping the change train or enjoy the adventures

Revising the Board Election Rules, 3rd iteration

October 8th, 2010 by

After the second iteration on the rules, a number of clarifications have been made and also the complete rule set got reordered and edited.

I’d like to thank David that did the major editing on this one.
What do you think? Are we good now to run the next elections with these rules?


Pcmanfm now add the support to move-able icons on the desktop

October 7th, 2010 by

A picture says more than 1000 words

I was just having fun with that..

Those changes are in git only repo, not tarball has been released yet, so if you want to test it you’ll not find it on the usual X11:lxde repo.

But don’t worry, i packaged it.. add X11:lxde:Test repo and upgrade libfm and pcmanfm from there..

As the openSUSE tradition:

Have a lot of fun…

Checking EPUBs

October 3rd, 2010 by

EPUBs are getting more and more important thesedays. If you believe the essays from well-informed magazines, they will develop into a standard for book and text consumption as MP3 did for audio.