Email etiquette

this is the most effective and useful mail signature I’ve ever read 🙂 (I encountered it on a newsgroup)

A: Because it messes up the order in which people normally read text.
Q: Why is top-posting such a bad thing?
A: Top-posting.
Q: What is the most annoying thing on usenet and in e-mail?

openSUSE 10.1 reloaded!

(open)SUSE is a wonderful distro, but with its latest release, 10.1, there definitely was something wrong. In trying to overhaul the whole packaging/updating system, they messed up pretty bad. I reinstalled my 10.1 about 5 times so far, and am still not satisfied 😉 The updating process is simply a pain the ….. back.

However, suse fans all over the world, please rejoice! as the openSUSE team has rereleased a fully patched 10.1! 🙂 openSUSE team, I love you! 🙂 I am really happy the suse team bravely admitted that this updating issue was a major showstopper and that they did something about it!

thanks David for reporting this important news so fast 😉

SMS alternatives?

At work, Microsoft’s Systems Management Server (SMS) is used to distribute new software version, take over remote screens, make catalogs of all software running on each pc, etc… Somehow, I have always found SMS to be one of the most crappy MS products I have ever seen. SMS has its deficiencies but its competitors also have some others. So there is no motive for innovation. It just sells because it is Microsoft’s.

What bothers me about such a product is not as much that it has bugs — every product has — but more that you can’t do anything about it because it’s fully closed source. I thought no OSS alternatives existed in this area, so I had given up on any improvement until recently.. I stumbled across an open source alternative, OCS inventory NG. 🙂 OSS is everywhere 😉

Netbean probs

Some while ago, I start coding a feed reader in J2ME to run on mobile phones. After some searching, it seemed like Netbeans would be the way to go.. They provide a nice UI builder including modeling of the flow between the different screens, tailored towards cell phones. Also, it seems the Sony Ericsson SDK provides nice integration with Netbeans.

My favorite java IDE IntelliJ doesn’t seem to support mobile development at all. (for the record, I wouldn’t use IntelliJ if I had to pay for it myself ;)) The next best thing, Eclipse, seems to be less mature in this area, although they are progressing fast. So Netbeans it became.

To my surprise, I even found a tutorial on the netbeans site which already gave me a bootstrap to my task! 🙂

So, where’s the problem?

Well, I set up netbeans and created a project and all, so I could get to serious work on my 2h train trip. Unfortunately, I didn’t manage to write a single line of code! 🙂 As soon as I opened my laptop, the Netbeans IDE seemed to have become very unresponsive! Opening a menu could take 10 seconds, scrolling through the code is impossible. I couldn’t believe my eyes at first, so I rebooted because I thought my laptop was having trouble waking up after having the short nap. However, not improved. I had to give up.
At home, I searched the internet, and indeed, netbeans has problems with my ATI X600 ‘s PowerPlay function! Who would have imagined that. 😉 Especially since this is the only Java app I have trouble with… Anyhow, just disabling the PowerPlay function solves the problem! It’s probably related to my ATI drivers, but since I have a fricking Dell laptop, I’m not allowed to install drivers other than from Dell, so, as you can imagine, Dell never supplies updates to the driver! If anyone knows how to circumvent the checks going on in the driver installer from ATI, please let me know…