Friday, April 24, 2009

give a linux laptop. change the world.

Well it seems that this is the "almost one year ago I wrote ..." time of the year in blogging :)
But almost one year ago I wrote about how the OLPC seemed to steer towards the crimson blue waters of Microsoft's Windows XP. And I was down right pissed about that...
Today I got some of my enthusiasm back when I somehow got to the Sugar page via a Lifehacker article about Sugar on an USB stick. And there I saw that they actually provide a VirtualBox image ready to use. Well long story short, about half and hour and some 300 megs later the OLPC OS was ready and running on my Leopard inside a VM.
I must say that it's a cute and elegant GUI and software package. A handful of apps so friendly that any primary school kid would instantly fall in love with. And like with any user oriented Linux there's a certain power under the surface, in places that you don't need to look into but where you eventually get to poke because you just have to. The browser even has the Gnash Flash Player which seems to be on par with the Adobe Flash Player 9. It certainly runs the games on and that is something.
And with these great I18n, multimedia, learning and collaboration tools who wouldn't like to own one. It's like the Apple OS for kids :)
A really great effort and result from the team so I really hope this keeps moving forward.
So now I would really be pissed if these nice laptops would run XP. But since the:
"As a matter of practicality and given the necessity to enhance performance and reliability while containing costs, XO is not burdened by the bloat of excess code, the “featureitis” that is responsible for much of the clumsiness, unreliability, and expense of many modern laptops."
statement is still on their page I'll be happy to presume that it implicitly excludes using Windows as an alternative OS.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009


Almost a year ago I wrote the open the screen and let the AIR come in... post to tell you about the Open Screen Project from Adobe. Now they announced the Strobe Project as "the standard video player framework" and meant to
"provide new delivery and monetization options for video distribution [...] accelerates momentum for the Flash Platform ecosystem, including the Open Screen Project, an initiative announced in May 2008 and backed by more than 20 industry leaders. [...] By providing open standards around media player development, Adobe is advancing the Open Screen Project and the ability of its participants to further their online media efforts."
And with Brightcove as main partner things should move pretty fast on a fairly good track ;)

Friday, April 17, 2009

disable Command+Q in OSX

Install Quicksilver.
Enable the User Interface Access Plugin and in OS X > System Preferences > Universal Access enable access for assistive devices.
Create a new Custom Trigger > Hotkey, in the first field press "." and write say "Ooops", press TAB and in the 2nd field select Run as AppleScript, leave the 3rd field empty.
There are a few more things you can do like setting the applications for which the Hotkey should work but the important thing is to set the Hot Key to Command+Q.
I'll next try to restrict it to the apps for which the close proximity to the Command+W combo makes it a dangerous feature, like Eclipse and Firefox ;)

Friday, April 10, 2009

selling (in) Romania

The Stillbirth of a Salesman
This same topic pops up again and again. Why doesn't sales work right in Romania?
The main cause of this general opinion seems to be the lack of smiles in the Romanian service oriented industries.
When asked like 5 yrs ago by my boss, a former German automotive industry marketing executive why are the services people so rude I said "they're not happy with their wages". He said "well maybe they should smile and that would lead to better wages...".
When asked by an US online entrepreneur 2 years ago why don't the people who serve in the restaurants smile and try to please their customers I said "It's a culture problem. We're not a service oriented culture, we regard serving as demeaning and that's also why people serving earn less.". He said "well maybe they would earn more if they offer better service. Time will teach them...". Well I can say that time works. Slowly but it does.
On the other hand I know people who work in sales. Good and bad. But on that side there's the target problem. Not the product nor the client. Because we're importing and not making the product. And the client is not as important as the numbers. A good salesman is the one who goes over his target. There's not much to relate to when you sell goods imported from China.
So a good start would be a smile, even if fake at first. Ioan can obviously give some coaching on this and hold hands if it hurts :)
Even better would be a good product to sell.
But if a good product and a first smile don't help then maybe you're not a salesman...