Fit for Purpose: Linux Mint Debian Edition on Sony Vaio Flip 13

Update: Since writing this, I have two things to add. Firstly, Linux Mint are terrible custodians of a distro and should no longer be trusted; they end-of-life'd LMDE mid-cycle with no upgrade/escape path to Debian, which is simply sloppy, and their packaging system for stock Linux Mint has come under scrutiny for being amateur-hour BS. Secondly, all of the below is now outdated, because Ubuntu works perfectly out of the box on this laptop, without any further hax or modifications.

Kindle Touch Hax #1: Personalised USB-connect Screen

Behold, my new Kindle Touch, an extremely kind gift from my family to me: But what is this? At the bottom of the screen, there's a message declaring my ownership! That's not normal for Kindle Touches. It's a little trick I've pulled off thanks to Yifan Lu's awesome work towards Jailbreaking the Kindle Touch. Essentially, Lu discovered that the Kindle executes native code embedded in the metadata of mp3 files, and used this fact to install a developer's key and a basic SSH server on the Kindle Touch.

Ubuntu Karmic; Macbook Bliss at Last

History of Linux and I I tried twice previously to switch to Linux, and for a few reasons didn't end up having any luck. The first time I did so was around 2005, when I was living out of home for the first time. My room was beautifully minimalist; just a double-bed, a wardrobe, a Shuttle X desktop PC and a 5.1 surround sound system. The wooden floors and old timber beam made it warm and cosy.

Internet Security: Chapter 1

Well, I promised a post on Privacy and Security online, and it's been long in coming. I'll admit that's because for all that I'd love to waffle on ad infinitum, I haven't done enough research to know that everything I'm saying is up-to-date. So, to strike a nice middle ground I'll split the post instead. In this installment, rather than offering “active” advice (such as what to install and how to browse), I'll offer the groundwork and the basics of how to “passively” be more secure online and how to preserve your security.

The OLPC Dream Fails

The One Laptop Per Child project aimed to design an open computing platform that could affordably bring computing to poor nations worldwide where it was most relevant, by providing children with laptops charitably for their education. The laptop would be small, obviously designed (to discourage theft or resale), friendly and intuitive, would educate children in the use of technologies which will be essential to their country's development in the near future, and, critically, it would cost less than $100.