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Granular Newsletter: October 2008

Welcome to the sixth edition of Granular Newsletter
The sixth edition of Granular Newsletter comes a month after the last edition, which was in September. Quite a lot has happened since last month in the Linux world. Here's a quick round up of news and events covered in this newsletter.

Google Android was released through T-Mobile, Linux turned 17, gOS 3 was released, and phpMyAdmin, GIMP, Python and some other software saw update releases.

Also, this time around, we have an interesting featured article "Granular Dreams" by the regular contributor Craig Shokley. Find out more in this month's newsletter.

We hope you'll enjoy reading the newsletter.

Granular Newsletter is divided into 3 parts:

1. News - Latest happenings from the Granular Linux community and Team Granular, and some other news related to Granular.
2. Tips & Tricks - Find some tips, tricks, work arounds and tutorials in this section that would help tweak/fine-tune/enhance your Granular Linux.
3. Featured article - Check out an original piece of writing submitted by members of the Granular Community.

Team Granular is looking out for contributions from interested ones for the future editions of Granular Newsletter. The newsletter is intended to grow both in quality and quantity. And this is possible only with the support of more people. If you wish to contribute articles, tips, tricks, tutorials, news (non-Granular), or any other possible contributions for the newsletter, contact us through email at [email protected].

gOS 3.0 is out
gOS is an Ubuntu-based operating system for the Internet users. In its latest avatar, version 3.0, it comes bundled Google Gadgets, Avant Window Navigator (Mac OSX-like doc), shortcuts to the most common Google services and a standard set of applications. Another notable release last month was linuX-gamers live 0.9.4. It's a Linux distro dedicated for those hardcore gamers out there. It's a heavy DVD and comes with many big games to keep a gamer satisfied.

Google Android released
The much awaited OS for the mobile platform - Google Android - was released last month. Android poses a serious competition to iPhone with its slick interface featuring eye-candy as well as usability. Android is, for time-being, available on T-Mobile.

Granular development update
September was yet another quite month for development on Granular. We did do some testing on the latest kernels, packaged by Chris, but none of the tested kernels got qualified for inclusion in Granular 1.0 final release. Among the tested kernels were, and 2.6.26.dev4.

Software updates
Some notable package updates for the previous month were: phpMyAdmin-3.0, firefox-3.0.3, gimp-2.6.1, wine-1.1.5, python-3.0rc1.

Google Chrome for Linux
Code Weavers, the company that produces a commercial software suite CrossOver (based on Wine) to run Windows applications, released an unofficial version of the Google Chrome browser for the Linux platform (by the name CrossOver Chromium), as the official release by Google is still pending. The download has been made available for free in RPM, DEB and shell script formats.

Linux turns 17
The Linux kernel was first made available for free downloading and testing by its creator - Linus Torvalds - on Usenet in the September of 1991. Last month, Linux quitely turned 17. Long live Linux.

Install packages from source
Many of you have heard about installing packages from source, but have never did that because it's somewhat difficult. First, why would you want to install a package from source when you can easily install it using Synaptic Package Manager? There could be many answers to this question, primarily being you want to install the latest version of a software not yet available through Synaptic. Or you want to install a software not available through Synaptic at all. [read more]

Compiling C++ programs in Linux
Have you ever wondered on how to compile your C++ programs in Linux? If that is so, here is a simple solution. First, make sure you have the package gcc-g++ installed; if it's not installed, install it using Synaptic Package Manager. Next, write your program using your favorite text editor, like KWrite, Kate, which supports syntax highlighting. Save the file with the extension .cpp to the desired folder (say, the saved file is myprogram.cpp). Now, open the folder where the program was saved and press F4 to open up command-line (Konsole). To compile the program and make a Linux executable out of it, issue the command:

g++ myprogram.cpp -o myprogram

This will create an executable with the name "myprogram" in the same folder. Now, you can run the executable:

Install Shockwave using Wine
Adobe Shockwave is an advanced platform for 3D applications on the Internet, and online games benefit the most out of it. But unfortunately, Adobe never released a version of Shockwave for the Linux platform.

Using Wine, you can easily play your favorite games made using Shockwave. Wine is a software that allows running Windows applications on Linux. Wine is an open-source, free software, and is now available as a stable 1.0 version. [read more]

The goodness of GIMP
Considered as the free alternative to the popular image editing software Photoshop, Gimp has already established itself as a powerful image editing software avaiable for all platforms. If you are using a Linux distro, chances are that Gimp came pre-installed with your OS. Now, have you ever thought of exploring the fun parts of it? No? Then, here is how to do that.

Gimp comes installed with many plugins/extensions that automate tasks such as creating predefined patterns, logos, effects, etc. To try them out, open Gimp. On the main interface, open the Xtns menu.There, find the submenus corresponding to Buttons, Logos and Patterns. These submenus contain a huge amount of predefined effects and patterns. Enjoy playing with them!

Dreams by Craig Shockley aka Galjaman

According to scientists who are supposed to know, dreams are bits and bytes of data left over or temporarily set aside as Subconscious mind sorts, files, and stores all that accumulated stuff we call memory. And everybody dreams. It's just that sometimes Subconscious is just too busy to tell Conscious, "Hey, I've been working here!" So it is quite possible we may not remember a dream in our waking moments.

Sometimes somebody says, "I never dream." Right away you know that person has a really busy subconscious, or a really lazy subconscious, or maybe, they're just dead. In the latter case you probably shouldn't have been talking to them in the first place.

Occasionally Subconscious works extra hard, puts in overtime, and then decides it deserves some serious recognition. This almost always happens when Subconscious accidentally connects pieces of data that Conscious could interpret as a possible "idea."

So Subconscious goes knocking on Conscious' iron bolted oaken door. If it's opened even a small crack Subconscious yells, "Hey! Look what I got here!"

Assuming Conscious sees something it believes has merit, the process of turning dreams to reality starts at that very instant. [continued...]

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About Granular

Granular is a Linux operating system that is easy to use, user-friendly, and filled with lots of fun. For newbies in the world of Linux who want to explore and play around with Linux, Granular is a must try. At the same time, it is well suited to the regular Linux users.

Through the various applications included in Granular, you can surf the internet, write articles, make presentations, chat with your friends, listen to music, play games, manage images and a lot, lot more.....

Another notable feature of Granular is that it unites various desktop environments, like KDE and Enlightenment, together onto one CD/DVD. Switching between them is easy.

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