Ok …out of the box, most Linux distributions are eyesores compared to MacOSx and Vista [even XP for that matter]. But the tools to make this beautiful lady shine are out there. Here is what an average guy like me was able to accomplish … so you can imagine what an organized set of people can do in this sphere.
So let me give you my own version of the Obama dream for Linux …. ¨If there is anyone out there who still …
….doubts that Linux can be as cute or even cuter than Windows or MacOS,
…who has not yet awoken to the the fact that Ubuntu is the most flexible operating system there is…..
…. who still doubts that Ubuntu is the virtual land where all dreams can come true …. THIS POST IS JUST THE TIP OF THE ICEBERG!!!!¨ [not exactly like the great guy himself but .... u get the idea ;-)]
First by laptop is an HP Pavillion dv5-1199ei, 2GHz Intel Centrino 2, 4GB RAM, with Nvidia chipsets for graphics. To honour this beauty [my girlfriend calls the laptop by concubine ;-)] … I decided to go with 64-bit Ubuntu 8.10 and so far, I have not been disappointed [...I am NEVER using the 32bit OS if I can help it].
Here is a list of the common applications I installed:
- I installed Wine so I can run some Windows applications.
- I installed Google Desktop Gadgets and Screenlets to suit all my desktop Widget/Gadget itches.
- Songbird for media player — it is the only Linux media player beautiful enough for me [others may be better but the aesthetics also matters to me]. Even then, I have installed the latest version of WinAmp using Wine [but in truth, it is not much better than XMMS]
- I also have Mplayer [with additional skins], and also VLC player.
- For Bible study, I have GnomeSword [a lot like e-Sword which I use on Vista]
- I use Pidgin for instant messaging [waiting for Digsby to become available on Linux]
- For the geek in me, I have GNS3/Dynamips/Dynagen for network emulation, Ethercap and Wireshark for packet analysis.
- To support my Webcam, i installed and use Cheese Webcam booth — works great.
- Openoffice Draw is a little clunky for my liking, so I installed Inkscape.
- My life is always very miserable if I don´t have Freemind, so I have the latest beta version of Freemind.
- I have latest Java installed with Flash 64-bit plugin for Firefox so I can watch Youtube movies.
bla bla bla, so here are some of the pictures ….
Fig 1: My desktop with some Google Gadgets running and my custom panel that holds shortcuts for applications I use most [my version of Windows QuickLaunch bar]
Fig 2: My cool dock application – AWN: I especially love that cool curving popup of a frequently used partition on my hard drive.
Fig 3: This is one version of my ¨Start¨ menu …. from the top toolbar [which automatically hides itself to give me more screen real estate when i am using other applications]
Fig 4:Freemind … the other part of my brain that is outside of me.
Fig 5: Songbird, my favourite audio media player on Linux.
Fig 6: All my running applications in ¨shaded mode¨ … let´s see you do that on Vista [out of the box]
Fig 7: What can I say? my workspaces visible at the same time in 3D! Cool isn´t it?
Fig 8: Switching through my running applications in an elegant and visual way.
Fig 9: Another way to flip through my running applications … the more traditional way.
Fig 10: My dock [AWN] and the second way to access my applications.
Ok …. all of these are not some artist impressions, i use them everyday. And this post was done using the ScribeFire plugin in Firefox.
Thank you to all those wonderful guys out there who make these beautiful things possible and affordable. Welcome to the future of computing …. it is painted in Linux!