SMILE is a Free Software that allows you to create video slideshows using images and videos. The name SMILE is acronym for Slideshow Maker In Linux Environment. The best way to start using SMILE in Ubuntu 9.10 is to install this package from getdeb.net because it installs all the required components with a couple of clicks. Users of other Linux distros can download SMILE here.
SMILE allows you to create slideshows either in PAL or NTSC format and you can render the final output in XVID, MPEG2, FLV, DV and MPEG4 HD formats. You have about a hundred transitions at your disposal. You also have an array of choices when it comes to effects: image rotation, slide opacity, motion blur, resize, transition speed and many others. As you might have guessed it, this powerful application also lets you add and edit titles.
In the world of computers, an avatar is a graphical representation of a user. Avatars come in different sizes, colors, dimensions and shapes. I like avatars so much that I use one as my profile image in my Facebook page. There are many tools to create a personalized avatar, but in the world of Linux the one that I like best is MeMaker.
MeMaker is a Free Software that allows users to create customized avatars and use them in social networking sites, forums, chat rooms and other virtual places. And yes, of course, you can use the avatars offline. While the application itself is tiny (only 4628 kB), it can do the work of giants. MeMaker provides seven styles to choose from: freestyle, artistic, plastidudes, glyphface, plazmoid, cocohead and animal-crackers. The avatar in the screenshot above is of the artistic type.
You can also choose the pigment and style of your hair as well as the color and shape of your face, eyes, mouth, ears, nose and eyebrows. You can even add eyeglasses, hats, beards and other accessories to your avatars.
The current stable version of MeMaker is 1.5. The easiest way to install it in Ubuntu 9.10 is to launch Ubuntu Software Center and find the free application under the “Graphics” category. If you are using another Linux distro, you can download the package here.
There is currently no Windows version of MeMaker.
The coolest thing about Minitube is it allows you to stream YouTube videos endlessly, without requiring you to install a Flash Player. Just type a keyword and then you can sit back and relax as you watch your favorite YouTube videos hassle-free.
I discovered Minitube while I was browsing the newly-renovated GetDeb.net. According to its official website “Minitube is a native YouTube client. With it you can watch YouTube videos in a new way: you type a keyword, Minitube gives you an endless video stream. Minitube does not require the Flash Player.”
Minitube runs in Linux and Mac OS X only. Ubuntu users can get it here and here. For other Linux distros please find the download links here. Mac users can download the Minitube universal binary from here.
Based on my experience, Ubuntu 9.10 users need to install the following plugins for Minitube to work flawlessly:
- GStreamer Phonon
- GStreamer Bad Plug-ins
Most of my day is spent in front of the computer. Thus a perfectly functioning machine is of vital importance to me. I do not want to worry about viruses and spyware. I do not want to have to defrag my harddisk every now and then or reboot everytime I install a new application. I do not want to worry about some malicious software or hacker gaining control of my computer. Since I multitask all the time, I do not want to be limited to a single workspace. In short, I want a computer that is secure and gives me what I need.
Thankfully there is an operating system that gives me the security and ease-of-use that I need. My laptop currently runs Ubuntu 9.10, a wildly popular Linux distribution. I’ve been using Linux (Red Hat, Mandriva, OpenSuse, PCLinuxOS and other distros) since 2004 and I can say that this free operating system helps me enjoy a stress-free life. And it’s because:
1. Linux makes me forget about viruses.
2. Linux allows me to update my system and all my applications with a single click.
3. Linux allows me to give copies of the OS for free
4. If I need to install an application I do not have to scour the web for it. In my Ubuntu-powered machine, all I have to do is run the Ubuntu Software Center
5. Linux allows me to use multiple workspaces. Great for multitasking
6. Linux comes pre-loaded with an office suite, media player, graphics programs, and many other essential applications
7. When I need help, the Linux online community will never forsake me
If you want to know more how Linux can make your life easier and why is it better than Windows or Mac, please go to this site.
Image Source: http://www.flickr.com/photos/denniswong/3867706307/
A friend of mine recently bought a SmartBro Prepaid USB stick (Huawei E156C). She asked me to help her set it up. You might think that you need to be a Linux geek to configure the mobile broadband to work in Linux. It is so easy anyone who knows how to use a mouse and a keyboard can do it. Here is how I made it work in Ubuntu Jaunty.
Once you connect the USB stick, you are prompted with this dialogue box. Just click “forward”. You may also click on the images for full view.
You choose “Smart,” of course. Then click “forward” again. Continue reading
There are people I know who have always wanted to know more about Open Source but don’t like to read printed and online explanations. Well my friends, I have found an online video series for you. It’s called Go Open Source, a South-African 13 part tv series dedicated solely to, what else, free and open source software.
It first aired in May 2004 and broadcasted its last episode in May 2006. Although some of the videos are two years old, they are still relevant and fun to watch. The presenter is funny and the presentation is fast-paced. The goal of the program is to “showcase success stories, interviews with the top local and international pioneers, and the latest products and news from the open source world.”
The following is a complete list of links to all the episodes: Continue reading