Linux Luddites

not all change is progress

February 3, 2014

Episode #8

Direct download links: MP3 & Ogg

Musix GNU+Linux – Debian – more licensing – Window Maker


Pear OS is no more. No links, as they’ve already pulled down their online presence…

Tizen faces new delay; don’t count on anything until second half 2014

With the sale of Motorola, Google and Samsung’s cold war is over. Paddy mentioned IDC’s figures on worldwide 2013 mobile phone shipments

New SteamOS beta has non-UEFI support and Valve is making all their games free to Debian developers

FreeBSD 10 released

POSIX.1-2013 man pages for Linux available for free download

Fedora Workstation proposal: ease installation of non-free software

FUD from the systemd camp and lobbying as battle over the Debian init replacement gets dirty. A vote is forced – resulting in standoff

Fedora 22 to require packages to provide AppData? Paddy mentioned Lennart’s presentation at GUADEC 2013

X.Org Server Systemd Integration Proposed

First Impressions

Joe failed to find his muse in the shape of Musix GNU+Linux, whilst Paddy was tasked with checking out PLD Linux Distribution for our next show.

Feedback & Flattrs

A huge thank you to tonieee and an anonymous donor for their Flattrs.

Félim Whiteley wrote to us about static linking, Red Hat, and the challenges in getting support for non-Red Hat distros.

Frank Bell, Dan-Simon and Stephen Rosenberg got in touch regarding our segment on Slackware, with Dan-Simon mentioning sbotools.

Tony wrote that “Luddites … were the first open-source Makers fighting the onset of automation and its destruction of real craft and pride in your work”. Quite. Rather than simply regarding all technology as abhorrent, Luddites fought against the exploitative and dehumanising aspects of certain uses of technology.

Tony also joined Robert Horn, Charles Stell and Rob Mackenzie in expressing appreciation for being exposed to the sometimes weird and wacky distros out there courtesy of our First Impressions segment.

Greg and Joe had a back and forth about our utilitarian show naming.

artm asked if we could mention his question on Ask Ubuntu about maintaining live window geometries whilst swapping monitors. Happy to oblige.

Brad Alexander, Scott Dowdle and Zach L offered a variety of perspectives on the systemd debate.

Morten continued his conversation with Joe over UNetbootin, whilst Thomas responded to Joe’s comments about Linux Mint Debian Edition. Thomas also pointed out that we had previously made a misleading statement about LastPass, which we were happy to correct.

Daniel MC asked for more blog posts, told us about CherryTree, and mentioned that SpiderOak was planning to open source itself in the future. Joe and Paddy speculated that they may only do that on the client side – a check on their website reveals that, sadly, this is indeed the case.

As Joe said whilst wrapping up the feedback section, we had to be fairly ruthless with our editing of the comments aired as there were simply so many thoughtful posts and points raised. Whilst this is a nice problem to have, the changes to show notes and commenting that Paddy mentioned should make it far easier for us all to have more in-depth conversations going forwards.


We attempted to put aside all that we know about Debian and to look at it through the eyes of a new user. Our verdict? Distinctly mixed.

Over a Pint

The segment on licensing last show provoked quite a bit of feedback, so we spent some time reading and discussing it. Thanks to Félim Whiteley, Robert Horn, Daniel MC, Zach L, Frank Bonner, Scott Dowdle, Don Willingham, Steve and Kenneth for contributing.

Next show we’ll be contrasting kernel space and user space development and fragmentation. Does user space also need a benevolent dictator? If so, who is best positioned to fill that role? Even if desirable, is such an outcome even possible? Drop us a mail or leave a comment below if you have any thoughts on this topic.

Off the Beaten Path

Thanks to a reminder from Robert Horn, Paddy talked about Window Maker, a free software facsimile of the NeXTSTEP GUI, which was a clear inspiration for later products like Unity and GNOME Shell. The easiest way to try Window Maker is probably via the live distro built for that purpose, and you might need the User Guide. Although pretty ugly out of the box, as the screenshot in this post shows, it really doesn’t have to stay that way.


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