Apr 262014
 

novena

The team that is building the Novena project is launching a crowdfunding campaign around the Novena open hardware computing platform. Originally, this started as a hobby project but by popular demand, they have prepared a crowdfunding offering and so everyone can contribute to the interesting project and bring at his home this interesting computer.

Novena is a 1.2GHz, Freescale quad-core ARM architecture computer closely coupled with a Xilinx FPGA. It’s designed for users who care about open source, and/or want to modify and extend their hardware: all the documentation for the PCBs is open and free to download, the entire OS is buildable from source, and it comes with a variety of features that facilitate rapid prototyping. 

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Apr 052014
 

lanius announce
Faster Than Light was one of my favourites games for 2013, and now they have just released a free expansion : Advanced Edition.

FTL: Advanced Edition is a major update that adds features to the original and is a free download for players who already own the original. It was released on Thursday, April 3, 2014

Faster Than Light (more commonly known as FTL) is a top-down, real-time strategy game on Steam, made by indie team Subset Games. The player takes control of the crew in a space vessel that’s in possession of critical information that must be delivered to an allied fleet several sectors away. However, to make the game more challenging, you are pursued by a large rebel fleet in every sector.

In keeping the story simple, the team has been able to create an in depth management system. You must maintain the ship when it’s damaged and make difficult decisions when under attack. For example, jumping in the middle of battle or taking energy from one source to power a weapon.

Jumping is how the player moves through the game, and, in some circumstances, the player may be near death, but can still escape battle. You will, of course, have encounters with the rebels. These are real-time, ship-on-ship battles which are the core of Faster Than Light’s gameplay, and, on quite a few occasions, the tension is increased through forcing you to make split-second decisions at every turn.
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Mar 312014
 

Productivity is very important. With a boost in productivity we save time and we get more work done in short period. That is why today in factories the production lines are automated. Productivity boosting is also important in everyday computer usage. No matter if you are just an regular desktop user, power user, developer or podcaster, with a boost in productivity you can save time, get more done and even also save some disk space, CPU and RAM usage. Many people do not know that there are some excelent opensource applications for increment the productivity. Some of them come as standard GNU tools with every Linux based operating system and other are standard parts from every major Linux distribution.

Idea behind this article is to cover some softwares that will be helpful for regular desktop users and also for small companies and offices.

1. ) Linux Terminal

Linux console is very powerful and useful. Learning your way through console should be on a to do list for every user. Today most users look at console like some archaic software, but console is not dead. It is used by millions of users everyday. Administration of systems, databases, development and many more tasks can be done faster from console then from any GUI application.

You can check my article on 10 programs to be used from the terminal, to get some idea of what you can do on the command line.

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Mar 302014
 

humble open source bundle
This week the Humble weekly Bundle has the subtitle “Celebrating Open source”, so I must buy and publish it :)
Apart the interesting title this bundle contains 8 nice games.

Each game in this bundle was made featuring some open source tool or library. Pay what you want for the high school-themed fantasy game, Magical Diary, the post-apocalyptic turn-based adventure game, NEO Scavenger (Early Access Game), the baby-throwing puzzle platformer, Offspring Fling!, and the visually stunning sci-fi combat game, Planet Stronghold. If you pay $6 or more, you’ll also get the whimsical 2-D puzzler, Anodyne, the tower defense and RPG hybrid, Defender’s Quest: Valley of the Forgotten, the 3-D action-adventure, Evoland, and the unique, limb-pulling adventure-puzzler, Incredipede.

The Humble Weekly Sale: Celebrating Open Source will only be here for one week. Grab this deal before it ends on Thursday, April 3, 2014 at 11:00 a.m. Pacific Time.

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Mar 162014
 

fitbit linux
I’ve recently received a fitbit flex as gift, and I love it, this personal device tracks steps, distance, and calories burned. At night, it tracks your sleep quality and wakes you silently in the morning. Just check out the lights to see how you stack up against your personal goal. Flex allows you to set a goal and uses LED lights to show how you’re stacking up. Each light represents 20% of your goal. You choose which one — steps, calories, or distance. It lights up like a scoreboard, challenging you to be more active day after day.

Flex automatically syncs your data to PCs and Macs with Fitbit’s wireless sync dongle (included), many iOS devices and select Android phones without plugging in or pushing buttons. Now all this sound fantastic and really funny if you like to take your stats and see nice graphs, but there is a small (big) problem about fitbit, it doesn’t support officially Linux.

Sure, you can use a compatible smartphone, but in general I like to use the idea of using my Linux computers for anything and with some research and some tests I’ve been able to sync successfully my flex with my Linux Mint 16.
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