Come, Look, See…


Maglev: Fastest Train in the World
March 21, 2007, 4:56 am
Filed under: Tech


Magnetic levitation technology has allowed us to view train travel in a whole new way. Maglev trains require no engine and travel using a magnetic field produced by electromagnetic coils. Because maglev trains never touch the track, no friction is created, allowing maglev trains to accelerate and travel at ridiculous speeds. The Shanghai Maglev Train was recorded traveling at a top speed of 313mph. Traveling at those speeds would get you from Paris to Rome in a little over 2 hours.

Check out this video of a maglev toy train which exemplifies this process well.

The video below is 10 minutes long but gives you an idea of how quickly a maglev train can accelerate. This is the Shanghai Maglev – this particular train ride reached a speed of 430km/h (about 269 mph). A look out the window at this speed is mesmerising, if a bit nauseating!

For more info visit: http://www.howstuffworks.com/maglev-train.htm

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Screenshots of Ubuntu Edgy Eft 6.10 with Beryl (A Linux OS)
March 9, 2007, 5:39 am
Filed under: Tech

Forget about Vista! The screenshots and video clip below are of my desktop computer with a Linux desktop environment called Ubuntu Edgy Eft 6.10 with Beryl Windows Manager installed on a 2002 1.9GHz Gateway Intel Pentium 4 computer with 256MB Memory and an NVIDIA GeForce2 MX graphics card.

Although ease of use hasn’t been Linux-based operating systems strong point, things have recently begun to change. With large Linux communities like linuxquestions.org and linux.org, it is becoming easier to find the support needed to make the transition from Windows to Linux. There are some pros and cons to every OS out there, but Linux platforms like Ubuntu (especially their latest Edgy Eft release) can make older computers run like new and have very little (if any) virus threats.

The proof is in the proverbial pudding: Below is a video clip and a few screenshots of my own desktop with Ubuntu Edgy Eft 6.10. Note that the Edgy Eft download does not provide you with the type of window manipulations you see below – rather that is the product of a windows manager called Beryl:

“Beryl is a combined window manager and composite manager written in C using OpenGL to provide acceleration. It is designed to be highly flexible, extensible, and portable, all the while keeping in mind that the users know how they want their desktops to act better than we do. With Beryl the rather esoteric concept of the computer desktop is brought down to a more human level, allowing for a more native and intuitive understanding of your workspace. To learn more about Beryl and its features visit our Feature Spotlight,” (from http://www.beryl-project.org).

I have had this particular setup for about 4 months now, a few months before Vista’s release. In fact, Edgy Eft has been available since October, 2006.

Despite the pros, Edgy Eft with Beryl is sometimes unstable, especially on older computers. About once every couple of weeks some weird graphics problem will arise like frozen windows. In addition, I’ve noticed that some p2p clients like Limewire will not work for me when I have Beryl running. I probably experience this more than most since my computer dates back to 2002. When this happens, however, I simply revert back to the default Gnome Desktop setting that comes with Edgy Eft and everything resumes normal operation – and all without restarting my computer.(As an ex-Windows user, the same computer with an XP OS was crashing almost daily.) Despite the minor disruptions, I am still very impressed with the amazing windows graphics and functionality that I am currently getting. Overall, I am really enjoying my desktop environment, something I haven’t done in a long time. Plus, Ubuntu and Beryl are both FREE!

The fact that I can have the type of functionality shown below with the following computer specs is simply amazing!

2002 Gateway Intel Pentium 4
1.9GHz
256MB Memory
GeForce2 MX/AGP/SSE2

For Ubuntu Edgy Eft 6.10 please visit http://www.ubuntu.com
For Beryl Windows Manager visit http://www.beryl-project.org

Linux – Ubuntu Edgy Eft 6.10 with Beryl
Uploaded by elguercoterco







March 9, 2007, 5:22 am
Filed under: Tech



Windows Vista?
January 26, 2007, 3:29 pm
Filed under: Tech

Microsoft’s Vista chief Jim Allchin:

“I would buy a Mac today if I was not working at Microsoft. The company has lost sight of what matters to our customers.” (he’s leaving at the end of the month)

That said, I think I’ll just stick with Linux.