FOSS Friday: Ubuntu 10.04 Beta2 Released, Songbird Drops Linux Support And More

This week we saw lots of interesting activities in FOSS. Here is our weekly roundup of the key FOSS events this week.

News

  • Ubuntu 10.04 Lucid Lynx Beta 2 Released

The second beta of Ubuntu 10.04 Lucid Lynx was released yesterday. Although it has some small changes, it does not have any striking difference from the earlier Beta 1. If you are using Ubuntu 10.04 Beta 1 with regular updates, there is no need to install the Beta 2 for you. You can read more here.

  • Songbird Decides to Drop Linux Support

The Pioneers of the Inevitable announced that the  Mozilla XULRunner based music player, Songbird, will no longer be supported in Linux. This decision has been blamed on the lack of developers and their inability to continue maintaining Songbird in Linux at the same level as that in Windows and Mac OS X. An active Songbird developer has already forked the Songbird project and named it Nightingale. You can read more about it here.

  • Firefox in Ubuntu 10.04 is Going To Use Google Search

Canonicals retracted their earlier decision to use Yahoo! as the default search in Firefox that comes with Ubuntu 10.04. Firefox in Ubuntu 10.04 will now use Google as the default search. You can read more here.

Tips & Features

  • Install The Ubuntu 10.04 Lucid Bisigi Themes In Karmic

There are a lot of people still using Ubuntu 9.10 Karmic and they might want to use the updated Bisigi themes but that’s not easy – the new PPA is only for Ubuntu 10.04 Lucid and also Karmic doesn’t have the latest Murrine engine so the themes won’t work – but there is a way to do it. Read more about it at  WebUpd8.

  • Installation and Getting Started with Firebug

Firebug is a free, open source tool that is available as a Mozilla Firefox extension, and allows debugging, editing, and monitoring of any website’s CSS, HTML, DOM, and JavaScript. Read more at PACKT.

Olive Wiz V-GC800: A triple SIM QWERTY phone announced in India

Olive-Wiz-V-GC800
Olive telecommunications has announced the launch of its first triple (GSM+GSM+CDMA) SIM mobile phone- Wiz VGC800. This QWERTY handset features a 2 Mega Pixel Camera, FM Radio, Music Player and Video Player with Recording, Java support and access to various social networking sites like Twitter and Facebook along with MSN and Yahoo IM.
Olive Telecom is a Gurgaon based, privately held leading Convergence Solutions Device Developer, which deals in mobile phones and laptops. After the successful launch of India’s first 3G embedded Netbooks, Olive is again on an innovative path- introducing a 3 SIM phone.

Some other Wiz VGC800 Specifications
• Display: 2.2-inch 262 K
• Expandable memory slot that can support up to 4 GB
• Bluetooth with A2DP
• 100 days replacement warranty as a part of 1 year warranty
• Changeable Back Panels in colour options of yellow, silver and black

The price of the Olive Wiz V-GC800 is officially not revealed. However, it is expected to cost around Rs 5,000.

Via: Indiainfoline

Indian Cricket Team captain MS Dhoni dropped from endorsing Aircel’s INQ handsets

Aircel
Indian Cricket Team Captain MS Dhoni will no longer be seen endorsing Aircel’s latest social networking handset INQ. Aircel is now running a new INQ advertisement which does not feature MS Dhoni .

Aircel was forced to take this step by Maxx Mobile Communications as Maxx had signed MS Dhoni for its advertisement. Mumbai-based company Maxx Mobile Communications, which owns Maxx Mobile brand, immediately took note of the INQ ads and asked telecom service provider Aircel to pull the commercial off air.

According to Mr K Rasool, head, marketing, Maxx mobile,

We have communicated our stand to Mindscapes Maestros, the agency that manages Dhoni, asking them to discontinue the advertisement which has Dhoni endorsing INQ handset as it breaches category exclusivity in the handsets space

In response to the action taken by Maxx Mobiles, an Aircel spokesperson said,

MS Dhoni is our brand ambassador for Aircel. Therefore, he endorses all products and services for Aircel. However, when we were informed by MS Dhoni’s agent that he is endorsing Maxx for IPL, keeping the sensitivity and his honour in mind, we withdrew him from this particular advertisement

Via: Economic Times

Batch Download Images From Google Images, Deviant Art And 4Chan

[Windows Only] Media Spider is free portable tool that helps you download pictures from Google Images, Devian Art and 4Chan. The tool supports batch downloading of images from the above mentioned websites. Media Spider uses tabs for the 3 websites with relevant options for each of them.

Google Images : Google images can be searched based on a particular search string, number of image results, image size, image offset and whether or not adult.

mediaspider-batch-download-images-google

Devian Art : To download images from Devian Art you have to define the following attributes,

  • Search string
  • Category
  • Sort by popularity over time
  • Number of Results
  • Image offset
  • Account details

mediaspider-batch-download-images-devian-art

4Chan : This uses a very simple search by category with no need of using any particular search string.

mediaspider-batch-download-images-4chan

With all options properly configured, press the Search or Download (for 4Chan) button to start the download. You will be asked to locate the download location of the images during the first run. From the next run the last downloaded location will be used.

mediaspider-save-location

Download Media Spider

Techie-Buzz Verdict :

Media Spider is an open source project and hence lot of improvements are yet to come. The portability makes it more handier for people who prefer to download lots of images at one go. The tool can be used by any PC user.

Techie-Buzz Rating : 4.5/5 (Excellent)

Freeware Fridays | Top Tools Of the Week #4

FreewareIn case you haven’t seen them, here are the most recent posts in our Freeware category. We hope you enjoy reading about these freebies, and maybe you’ll find a keeper in the mix.


icon-last-fm

Record Last.fm Songs with Last Recorder But is it Legal?

A freeware tool called Last Recorder will allow you to download MP3 songs from Last.FM. The question about the legality of doing this still remains unanswered.
blue-rule3 Animated Waterfall Screensavers You Will Love
Moving water and clear blue skies will cheer up your screen when the PC isn’t doing anything. Check out these fantastic animated waterfall screensavers.

pdf-icon
Split and Merge PDF Files with GiosPSM
Unless you have the full version of Adobe Acrobat, making changes to existing PDF files is a problem. I’ve discovered a great free program that helps me deal with splitting and merging PDF files.

lockup-icon
Lock Your Programs with Lockup
If you need to keep people from running specific applications on your PC, this little freeware app could be one of your favorite tools. It’s small, easy to use and it’s free.


Convert Almost Any Video Format with Any Video Converter
This free program allows you to convert between a large number of video formats such as AVI, FLV, MOV, MP4, MPG, M2TS, MTS, RM, RMVB, QT, and WMV. It can also download and convert YouTube videos.


I’ve picked a few freebies from the SnapFiles Freeware directory for you to check out.

snapfiles-logo

NEW – AutoSizer v1.71

AutoSizer is a small program that runs in the system tray and can automatically resize and reposition any program or folder window. You can choose to maximize or minimize a specific window, define cu….

NEW – uPrompt v1.0

uPrompt is a simple teleprompter software, designed for personal webcam production and audio annotations for instructional desktop videos. The teleprompter windows can be docked to the top or bottom ….

NEW – File Blender v0.18

File Blender is a customizable file conversion and processing tool with a minimalist interface that automatically presents you with available conversion options when you drag and drop a file onto the….

NEW – Calibre v0.6.46

Calibre is an open source e-book library management application that enables you to manage your e-book collection, convert e-books between different formats, synchronize with popular e-book reader de….

Update – Pencil v0.4.4b

Pencil is a traditional 2D animation software that enables you to create pencil sketches and animated them to create hand-drawn cartoon animations using both bitmap and vector graphics. The program p….


Do you have any suggestions for us? Do you have any requests for free software? Be sure to comment below.

Virgin Mobiles to Offer Free Local and National SMS

Virgin-Mobile
Virgin Mobile GSM has introduced free local and national SMS to subscribers on their minute plan without any special pack. This offer is applicable for only those customers who have subscribed to “Per Minute Plan” paying Rs.1.5 as their daily rental. However, other customers can also avail this offer by switching to “Per Second” plan. This can be done by recharging with Rs.13, which offers a talk time of Rs 10 as well.

Virgin Mobile allows you to send up to 1000 SMS per day within the same network (Local and National) and 100 local SMS per day to any other network. In case you exceed the messaging limit, you will be charged 50 paise/SMS.

Virgin Mobiles had recently launched a SMS Pack (providing Free National and Local SMS) for its GSM prepaid users for Rs 69. Now it has come up with free SMS’s on Per Minute Plan. This is certainly a smart move, as it will force more people to switch to Per Minute Plan.

Via: Mobigyan

LG Mini GD880 with new HTML5-Supporting Phantom Browser

Lg-Mini
LG Electronics has announced the launch of its new LG Mini (LG GD880). The key highlight of this new model is its ultra-fast Phantom Browser, which supports HTML 5. Its 5.0 megapixel camera along with Wi-Fi and A-GPS facility makes the handset truly amazing.

LG Mini allows you to enrich your web browsing experience with HTML 5-compatible Phantom Browser, which offers a much faster browsing. Mini is built using most recent Webkit standards and therefore works well even if 10 browser windows are open at a time.

To offer an unprecedented user experience, Mini offers support to Google’s Latitude, Gmail, Calendar, Google Maps and Google Buzz services. LG Mini also has a support for LG Air Sync, which helps in wireless synchronization of information and data to a computer, the web and the phone.

This 3.2-inch touchscreen device has a lot improved JavaScript and Flash performance and supports enhanced navigation tools. So, the web pages load at a size optimized for reading on Mini’s screen.

You will have to wait a bit before LG Mini hits stores. It is expected to be available in stores in late April in Europe. Other nations need to wait a further more.

Via: Mobiletechreview

Vodafone Brings Songs For Mumbaikars For Just Re.1

Vodafone Free Music DOwnloadLooks like Vodafone is on a long run for pleasing it’s customers to any extent. We have already told you about Vodafone launching an App Store in India and Vodafone’s new customer support on Twitter. Now Vodafone has launched an unique scheme by which Vodafone subscribers can now enjoy latest music content on their phones almost for free.

This exclusive music download service is accessible on your GPRS mobile phone via Vodafone Live (Available to Vodafone customers). Songs are available in various categories such as Bhajans, Ghazals, New Age, current and more external hits. Customers will be charged Re.1 Per song download. But only 5 songs can be downloaded on one day. All your customisations will be saved on the Vodafone Live website for you to download later.

This service can be accessed by sending an SMS message LIVE to 111. The catch is this service is currently available to only the prepaid and postpaid subscribers of Mumbai however we may expect this service to be launched in other cities soon.

Image Via CellBharat

World Telecom Development Conference In Hyderabad From 24 May!

The World Telecom Development Conference is held every four years to discus latest trends in the Telecom industry, New technologies and development of telecommunication in all countries throughout the world. This confernece is hosted by the Telecom arm of United Nations – The International Telecommunication Union (ITU).

ITU has declared that the fourth edition of the World Telecommunication Development Conference would be held this year in the International Convention Centre at Hyderabad from May 24 to June 4, 2010.   This year, development priorities in view of the deep digital divide created by the rapid but uneven expansion of information and communication technologies will be discussed and finalised. Emphasis will also be laid on promoting international cooperation and partnerships to help strengthen telecommunications infrastructure and institutions in developing countries. The third edition of this conference was held in Doha in 2006 which saw about 1,200 participants from over 191 countries.

DYK Thursday – Round Up Of April Fool Pranks Made By Google This Year

Google has a tradition of fooling its vast amount of users by it’s creative pranks every year on April 1st. This year, it has played many pranks. So, I thought I would list them all in a single post.

Renaming Google as Topeka: Google in response to the April fool prank played by CNN (renaming Topeka, Kansas as “Google”, Kansas), wrote a post on its company blog that it is changing its name to “Topeka”. Check this post out!

LifeSize from Picasa: This feature from Picasa lets you enlarge any image into a life size image.

Japanese Keyboard: Google Japan has created a keyboard with plenty of keys! Check out how it looks!

Store anything with Google Docs: This feature from Google Docs, helps you to store anything you want! I repeat, anything. The blogpost linked above stated that,

As with documents, spreadsheets, and files, you also share objects you’ve uploaded to Google Docs with anyone in the world. For example, do you ever wish you could CTRL+F your house keys or your TV remote? Store your keys, remotes, rail passes, and other objects you commonly lose with Google Docs, and you’ll never have to worry about finding them again. Having trouble moving your piano from New York to California? Upload it from your home in New York, then download it once you’re in California. Change your mind and want to share it with your friend in England instead? No problem. With one click you can have your piano delivered to anyone you choose, anywhere in the world.

Chrome Sounds: Google released a new extension for Google Chrome on April 1st called as “Chrome Sounds”. This is what the Chrome blog says about the extension.

Taking an earful of inspiration from the  HTML5 audio tag, we’ve spent the past few months deep in psychoacoustic models, the Whittaker-Nyquist-Kotelnikov-Shannon sampling theorem, Franssen effects, Shepard-Risset Tones, and 11.1 surround sound research to build a cutting-edge audio-driven user interface for our users, available through a  new Chrome extension. With this extension, Chrome will provide audio feedback as you browse to web pages and interact with the browser.

A little complicated, nevertheless great extension! :P

YouTube TextP option: This is a new filter for videos which helps you to see videos in ASCII format. This helps to reduce the bandwidth consumption, it seems!

TEXTp is the result of months of intense transcoding efforts by our engineers, who toiled for weeks to ensure that a large chunk of videos on the platform could be reduced to their most basic elements. By replacing the images in the video with a series of letters and numbers, the videos are far less taxing on our system — and have the added benefit of promoting literacy!

Google Translation for Animals: Okay, now there is an Android app that helps you to translate animal voices. You need to record the voices of the animal’s sound you want to translate and this app will translate it into human language!

Google Books in 3D: You can now read books in 3D. You need to put on the 3D glasses and click the option “View in 3D” and you are ready to go!

Wow, that’s a great list of pranks! Well done, Google!. Wait, did I miss any other prank in this list? Then, just tell me through comments. I will update the post with that soon!

Know your technology head on