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Practical Technology
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How CAPTCHA got trashed

Practical Technology - Mon, 14/07/2008 - 5:47pm
CAPTCHA used to be an easy and useful way for Web administrators to authenticate users. Now it’s an easy and useful way for malware authors and spammers to do their dirty work. CAPTCHA — Completely Automated Public Turing Test to Tell Computers and Humans Apart — was a good idea in its day. You [...]

UMPCs and Linux: made for each other, and coming soon

Practical Technology - Sat, 12/07/2008 - 3:15am
Who knew that the biggest desktop Linux show of 2008 would turn out to be the June Computex show in Taipei, Taiwan, where the next generation of Linux desktop hardware was put on display? In fact, Linux was at the heart of no fewer than four different ultra mobile PCs (UMPC). At the show, Intel introduced [...]

Why openSUSE 11 is the Linux for me

Practical Technology - Thu, 10/07/2008 - 5:31pm
Recently, my colleague James Turner reviewed openSUSE 11 and he liked it. It’s hard to tell from some of the notes he got back-shame on you people!–but he really did. I, on the other hand, love openSUSE 11 and since Warren Woodford, the developer behind MEPIS, has had to put his great Debian-based Linux distribution on [...]

Preventing DNS Poisoning in Linux

Practical Technology - Thu, 10/07/2008 - 5:28pm
If you don’t think the recent discovery of the DNS cache-poisoning flaw is bad news and needs to be addressed as soon as possible, let me repeat what Paul Mockapetris, DNS’ (Domain Name System) inventor, had to say about this security hole: Patch your DNS servers right now. CERT can tell you about the technical details [...]

Developing Open-Source Business Policies That Work: Everyone Is Making It Up As They Go Along

Practical Technology - Wed, 09/07/2008 - 10:20pm
We know your company uses open-source applications. We also know many of you already have an open-source policy. Sort of. As discovered when researching the adoption of open-source in enterprise IT, a quarter of respondents have a formal policy in place to control how such software is chosen, supported and deployed. Another 18 percent [...]

Building Linux Software the easy way: OpenSUSE Build Service

Practical Technology - Wed, 09/07/2008 - 6:22pm
Let’s say you want to write an easy-to-install program for any Linux distribution. That’s a a problem. There is no single, easy way to install software for all versions of Linux OpenSUSE thinks it has an answer: the openSUSE Build Service. The openSUSE project, the community Linux distribution supported by Novell, announced the release [...]

Ubuntu Linux goes retail

Practical Technology - Wed, 09/07/2008 - 4:21pm
The cheapest way to get Ubuntu Linux is to download it, burn it to a CD, and then install it on your PC of choice. The easiest way to get Ubuntu is to buy it pre-loaded on a Dell PC. The U.S. consumer way to get Ubuntu may turn out to be buy it yourself [...]

VMware gets slugged

Practical Technology - Wed, 09/07/2008 - 1:12am
I told you so. I told you back in late June VMware was about to get its block knocked-off by the one-two of open-source virtualization and virtualization being baked into operating systems. On July 8th, VMware’s rump hit the canvas. That was the day Diane Greene, CEO and co-founder was fired and replaced by former Microsoft. [...]

Reiser: Guilty. Reiser4 Lives On

Practical Technology - Tue, 08/07/2008 - 3:08pm
Some of us thought, based on the lack of any real evidence in his trial, that Hans Reiser might be innocent of the supposed murder of his wife, Nina Reiser. We were wrong. On July 7th, Reiser led representatives of the Alameda County District Attorney’s office, and Oakland Police to her body. According to the [...]

Ballmer, dead parrots, and dead deals

Practical Technology - Mon, 07/07/2008 - 10:47pm
What part of “Yahoo doesn’t want a thing to do with you” did Ballmer not get? The new lord and master of Microsoft seems to be deaf, as well as dumb, in his latest attempt to try to buy Yahoo. Microsoft, along with billionaire investor Carl Icahn, who at 72 seems to be losing his business [...]

We’re Number Two: Firefox Grabs More Market Share

Practical Technology - Sun, 06/07/2008 - 3:08am
Mozilla’s successful attempt to set a world record for downloads of a single program, Firefox 3 was dumb. It was also incredibly successful. Does anyone really care about how many copies of a program are downloaded in a day? In 2008? When a program can be downloaded from hundreds of different sites? When BitTorrent and other [...]

Adobe Flash 10 on Linux: Looking Good

Practical Technology - Sat, 05/07/2008 - 10:49pm
Adobe Flash Player 10 for Linux may only be a beta, but it’s one heck of a beta. I didn’t care for Adobe Flash video at first. It was just another proprietary audio/video format in a world already over-flowing with them. Three things have happened to change my mind. First, Adobe made it possible to [...]

KDE Developer Quits

Practical Technology - Thu, 03/07/2008 - 9:48pm
Being grumpy is almost part of the job description for developers. Recently though several KDE developers came right out and asked, “Does KDE even need (certain) users?” While, Troy Unrau, a KDE developer and perhaps best known as the author of stories for KDE News, opened this can of worm by saying “This is a [...]


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