Gnome 3 - recommended

Well, this is interesting - some famous people (Linus Torvalds, Mark Shuttleworth) plus folks I respect at work have a real downer on Gnome 3. I installed it today (3.2.1) whilst trying to get something else to work, and gave it a try.

 And I think it is great. It looks good, performs well, and is highly usable.

  •  Mouse to the top left of the screen (or press Windows key) gives thumbnails of the running apps (Activities-> Windows) 
  • or you can click on Applications to get a list of apps, which are categorised (All, Accessories, Games etc.). 
  • Hit the Windows key and start typing: this searches for Apps or Contacts (I wonder if it can be made to search for files?) 
  • Also on the Activities screen is a dock which shows favourites. It looks very similar to the Unity side bar except it doesn't pop up irritatingly when you put the mouse over it whilst trying to use the windows max/min/close buttons which are on the left in Unity. 
  •  max/unmax is just double clicking on the windows top bar 

 So I was getting used to Unity, and could see where Canonical were going with it. But it seems to me that Gnome 3 is here now and working well - recommended!!

 (PS: Using Ubuntu 11.10 on Lenovo W520)


Steve Jobs and the WWW

Fascinating background on Steve Jobs influence on software engineering with things such as hypercard.  What I didn't know was that Tim Berner-Lee used a NeXT machine!


Thoughts on reducing delivery cycles

Mary Poppendick:LeanEssays: How Cadence Predicts Process makes some excelent points about the efficiency of delivery from requirement to delivery of thesupporting feature.  Along the way she mentions Kent Beck and the affects of reducing the release cycle on sales, support etc. Close to my own heart at present is automated testing and a mention of the book Specification by Example


Android tablet

I have dipped my toe in the tablet pond. I have got an Advent Vega, a £200 Android tablet.  Cheap price but the processor and screen are great.

I have upped the rom to include Android Market,and have gradually added more Apps.

Have had a couple of glitches where the wi-fi stopped, the screen rotation was 90degrees out, and reboots gave an error.  Backup system works!

Why Android rather than Apple? USB port, SDcard, terminal.......

The Vega does not look as sexy as an iPad, but I am happy with its function!


LaTeX: More Than Just Academic Papers and Theses

I have long been a fan of Latex for large complex documents. Over the years I have found that it can do more, even for small documents.

The breadth of things Latex can do is fantastic, and the quality is great.

Great presentation.



Just trying out another blog entry system from emacs!


Phil Windley's Technometria | Capture Mode and Emacs

Finally got round to setting this up: Phil Windley's Technometria | Capture Mode and Emacs: "Capture Mode and Emacs".

Very easy to add anything to an org-mode file from anywhere. I will have to look at the time-date hierarchy and see whether and how to add to the workflow.  In addition to the elements in Phil's video, of course  C-c C-l to store a link is also available


Quicklisp needs more love

To hear the GigaMonkey Overlord is to obey!!
Quicklisp is fantastic: lisp libraries. In all seriousness this is THE way to install many excellent lisp libraries in a way which also takes care of dependencies.