Hey Tony, I’d like you to meet a friend of “Ours”

August 20, 2007

Tony SopranoTechnology can be intimidating.

Too many choices and too many options mean that many average users are intimidated and discouraged when they try and buy a new piece of equipment; especially a new PC.

Talking to strangers

I’ve often found myself talking to complete strangers in Best Buy or CompUSA because they’re standing in the aisle, staring blankly at a shelf full of options, with no idea where to start.

Other times, a couple has three of four similar products in their hands, and they’re arguing about which one to buy with no clear idea what the differences are. Afterall, when you’re a couple, you can argue about anything.

In these situations I like to step in and offer my perspective, as someone of works with technology every day.

I’m what the marketers call a “technology influencer”.

You probably are too.

What do YOU think I should do?

We’re the people our friends and family turn to when they need to buy a new piece of equipment, or when they want to know if they should upgrade to Vista, or what printer they should buy.

We have a profound effect on the success or failure of new products like the Zonbu…

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Excellent Ubuntu & Linux Documentation Wiki

August 16, 2007

Ubuntu LogoI wandered across an interesting post in another blog on WordPress today.

I’ve talked a fair bit about how far desktop Linux has come, and how far it has yet to go, both in terms of operation and ease of use for new users.

For those that are dipping their toe in the water, or making the full dive in with a large scale distro like Ubuntu, I thought the following would be of interest…

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LinuxMCE videos show impressive UI experience

August 15, 2007

LinuxMCE ScreenshotThis isn’t a Zonbu specific post, but I just read an interesting article over at DesktopLinux.com and followed the link through to some videos of the LinuxMCE project.

What struck me was how innovative and interesting the UI is. I’m a long time MythTV user, and while I find some of the ideas a bit gimmicky, some make a lot of sense. I’ve got one of those “invasive” full screen UIs on my box. I actually like the Myth UI but seeing a different “take” on design is always interesting.

Perhaps the Zonbu could crib a few ideas from the media center interface, to make interactive with it even easier.

-Mr. Zonbu

Is the grass greener on the other side? Part I

August 12, 2007

Green PastureI spent an obscene amount of time yesterday playing with different alternate Linux distros on the Zonbu

I had Ubuntu Feisty 7.04, Ubuntu Gutsy 7.10 (Tribe 4) and DreamLinux all running on my Zonbu.

I attempted Freespire 2.0, but never did get it work. There is a bootloader issue that I’m going to try and resolve later today.

So what did I learn? Let’s talk about Ubuntu. More after the jump…

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A Gutsy Move…

August 11, 2007

Well, due to having to upgrade the kernel to Gutsy in to order to get sound support, and then having to compile against that kernel to get the right video driver, X didn’t like the driver since it was compiled against different modules than the X-Server itself.

Don’t know what I’m talking about?

That’s fine, that’s why you should buy a Zonbu in the first place! Even so, stay with me. I’m downloading the Gutsy ISO so I can install that and hopefully get the correct video driver working, and then report back.

Still don’t know what I’m on about? Ignore this post and enjoy the rest of the blog. It is almost all non-technical.

-Mr. Zonbu

Zonbuntu? I feel kind of guilty…

August 11, 2007

Ubuntu LogoI have to admit I feel kind of guilty.

This afternoon I’m installing Ubuntu on an alternate 8GB flash card to see how it performs on the Zonbu hardware.

I’ve put my 8GB Sandisk Extreme III card (with the Zonbu OS stack) away for safe keeping.

So far, things seem to be going ok. In fact, I’m writing this from the Zonbu box, via Firefox under Ubuntu.

I installed the Ubuntu Feisty 7.04 Desktop, did the recommended package updates via their tool, and then followed these docs on the Zonbu forums to get the audio working

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