On Fri, 2010-01-15 at 14:25 +0000, Leo Butler wrote: > > > On Fri, 15 Jan 2010, William Hamilton wrote: > > > < > > < > Open Source can I think be more satisfying than simply editing a config > < > file to run the work of someone else. <snip> > I agree: the most effective way to support foss is through *good quality* bug reports. > > See: > http://www.debian.org/intro/help That is, absolutely, something I've had to deal with. I last wrote C code about 20 years ago, for VMS, on VAX and Alpha. I would be a long way off getting sufficiently up to speed to be submitting patches without risking a shredding. However, I have got quite good at submitting suitably detailed bug reports to enable a fix to be implemented. I'd tried adding a tripwire-type package to my Ubuntu install, and that blew up running the install. What I could see in the install log was that the package relied on there being an actual "mail" command available within the shell. I submitted the report with logs and my "guess" at the problem, couple of days later someone picked up the bug, reproduced it, patched the dependencies, and an updated version went out. It is satisfying to see the emails for fixing the bug; they're much more likely to do so with a clear bug report. I'm a relatively recent convert to Ubuntu - I always had a showstopper in getting my 15-year archive of email extracted from Outlook. It does not, unfortunately, go straight from Outlook to Evolution. As an intermediate step you need to use Thunderbird (which I dislike the interface of), you need to have a working Outlook install, and the first step needs done on Windows so you can call various Outlook libraries to extract the mails. And, important to me, Evolution supports working with an Exchange back-end - so many companies use this. I'm sure the current or next version from Microsoft will be tweaked to exclude Evolution and their team will have to reverse engineer those horrible Microsoft protocols to fix that. What, to me, would be valuable as well as quality bug reports is a ready-to-go 'tweaked' Ubuntu Live CD. Perhaps the biggest advantage I see with that is you could stop an awful lot of PCs going in landfill because they won't run Windows 7. For most uses, once you've done the base Ubuntu install you then have to add the Medibunti repository, install support for DVD, various non-free video formats, MP3 libraries, and a few other bits and pieces. I don't really think it would be too difficult to actually have a tweaked distribution where end-users did not have to do the technical work; just boot from the live CD, run a slightly more detailed set of tests than Ubuntu's built-in ones, and then just do a full install, get online, and automatically pull down what won't fit on a CD. Preload a bunch of UK and region-specific bookmarks, and, oooh, .... Call it "Ubuntu Lothian". If the CDs are readily available, say, at £1 each, a lot of people would gamble on that when their laptop gets so infested it's useless. As long as they know up-front that things like the built-in webcam might not work. I think a lot of people would be happy to lose that rather than, as often happens, they buy a new laptop. And I think it could be done with the freely available repositories - not actually needing to host one somewhere and maintain it. <cue distro wars> Oh, and if someone could write a .pol (Play on Linux) for Spotify... -- Brian McNeil <firstname.lastname@example.org>|http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/Brian_McNeil Content of this message in no way represents the opinions or official position of the Wikimedia Foundation or any of its projects.
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