Monday, April 19, 2010

Simple Scan 1.0

Last week I hit 1.0* for simple scan. It's not perfect but it appears to be reliable and is an improvement on the existing scanning experience.

I've prosed simple-scan for GNOME 3.0 and will be following the GNOME release schedule from now on (next release will be 2.31.1).

*Make that 1.0.2. There's always a few last minute fixes :)

Saturday, April 03, 2010

GCalctool 5.28 in Ubuntu 10.04 LTS

I've made a PPA containing GCalctool 5.28 backported to Ubuntu 10.04 LTS. To install use the following commands:

$ sudo add-apt-repository ppa:robert-ancell/gcalctool-528
$ sudo apt-get install gcalctool-528

(Provided so you can run the Karmic gcalctool in Lucid if the interface is more useful to you).

(UPDATE: We've decided to stick with GCalctool 5.28 for Lucid so this PPA is obsolete).

Friday, April 02, 2010

SVG themes for glChess

Thanks to a a patch from Alexey Kryukov glChess now supports themes in SVG. Thanks Alexey!

Embrace Change

This is a letter to all those who think change = bad.

If you don't want your software to change then don't upgrade.

If you want your software to improve then expect (and enjoy) change.

If a feature is present in a version X, then that feature may not exist in version X+1. This is not a regression - applications don't exist to provide features; they exist to serve the users that the application is targeted at.

Default applications are there to serve the greatest number of users. In both the proprietary and open-source worlds there is often a "basic" and an "advanced" application for a given task. This is a good thing - trying to please everyone isn't as good as focussing on one group.

If there is an application that better serves your need then use it. (If you are an advanced user then use an advanced application).

I'm personally most interested in writing applications for the beginner to intermediate user. I'll relate this to the applications that I develop:
  • Simple Scan is not a replacement for xsane or gscan2pdf. But it is great if you have a picture you want to upload to Facebook.

  • GCalctool does not have the features of Qalculate or wxMaxima. But it does solve common equations.

  • glChess would not be used by a experienced chess player like xboard. But it is a good introduction to the game of Chess.