Friday, February 29, 2008

My Kiowa Linux Beta 3 Desktop.

As I mentioned yesterday, I have Kiowa Linux Beta 3 (GNOME edtion) installed on my system. It installed in a flash and boots in a blink!

I've been playing with some of the features the GNOME desktop has to offer. Changing the desktop background was a snap. And since my nephew has been sending me information on the upcoming Ironman movie (you can see the latest trailer here), I decided to grab one of the Ironman movie images floating around the web.

All I did was right click on the desktop and selected "Change Desktop Background." A new window appear and allows the user to add images form anywhere on the hard drive and then select these images. I added the Ironman image from my Pictures folder, it then became part of the wallpapers dialog, and I simply highlighted it and pressed "Close." The background changes! Very easy! And there are other tools to tweak the size of the background image, adjust fonts, and choose themes.

In a word,this new Kiowa Linux Beta 3 release is Sweet! I'll be posting more information as i continue to explore this exciting Linux distro!

Get Linux.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Kiowa Linux Beta 3

Last night, I downloaded the new Kiowa Beta 3 and installed it. It all went quite well! The installation was the smoothest and easiest I've ever experienced. And it was fast, too! Speaking of fast, I'm most impressed at how fast this new Kiowa Linux boots! If I miss my guess, in less than 25 seconds, I'm up and running.

I'm a KDE fan myself, but this Gnome desktop is quite nice. It really is a nice interface. Very user friendly. I'm able to find all needed utilities and tools without any problems.

The first thing I did was go into the repo and install the Nvidia drivers. Wow! My wide screen flat panel just jumped to life! It looks gorgeous!

Really, folks, get this distro while you can. I don't think you'll be disappointed. So far, I'm loving the experience. I'll be working on my comic strip George over the next few days and I'll be using Kiowa Beta 3 to help me along. Kiowa Beta 3 has the latest Gimp (ver. 2.4) which is a huge improvement over 2.2. Also included are the latest stable versions of Firefox and Thunderbird. So, it'll be nice to try out some new toys.

Matt and the entire Kiowa Linux team have done a nice job with this release. If you're new to Linux or a seasoned Linux user, no matter. Get Kiowa Linux and take it for a test drive.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Kiowa Linux and Gimp 2.4




The Great thing about Linux is how cutting edge it is. And a majority of it is due to a community of people working together to produce not only an advanced OS, but some of the most advanced software for your desktop computer. And, the majority of this software is free!

An example of this, is the latest and greatest version of Gimp. Gimp 2.4 boasts some amazing tools! One of these tools is shown in the Google video above. Perspective Cloning! Perspective cloning is available in PhotoShop CS, but that program costs $600.00 or more. Gimp is Free. and the perspective cloning tool is awesome! There are other new tools in Gimp 2.4 and these are quite remarkable, as well. You can see video demos of these at the Gimp's site.

Now, the great part is, Gimp 2.4 is availble in Kiowa Linux! Kiowa Linux is striving to make sure the latest and greatest Linux software is available in each new release.

Kiowa is getting ready to release a new beta of its Linux OS. I highly recommend that you get involved in the Kiowa community and give this Linux operating system a test drive. You'll love it! and you'l also have the latest stable version or Gimp, Firefox, Thunderbird and more!

I'm running Kiowa Linux onmy laptop and already have been creating neat images qwith Gimp 2.4

Get creative, get Kiowa, get Linux, and you'll have Gimp 2.4.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Vista Is Rubbish!

Yesterday, I talked about why I love Linux so much. I received a comment regarding this blog post from an IT professional (Screen name Toe). Toe has created a terrific site pointing out Windows Vista vulnerabilities and shortcomings. The site is called Vista Is Rubbish.

I especially like his page devoted to alternatives to Vista.

His site is worth the visit especially if you are considering buying a
Windows Vista system. The short answer is DON'T!

The frustration that many are experiencing with Windows Vista is summed up by the following YouTube video from Anthony of the Opie and Anthony Radio Show.

video

So before you spend all your hard earned money on a Vista system, do a little investigative legwork. Then, get Linux.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

This Is Why I Love Linux So Much!

I have a rack computer system. It allows me to plug in different Hard Drives and run different Operating Systems. I run several different Linux distributions on these hard drives. Ubuntu, Freespire 1.0, Freespire 2.0, Linspire 5.0 and Kiowa Linux populate these hard drives. I've also loaded PCLinuxOS, Mandriva One, Mepis, and a few others to see how they run and how they differ from the distros I normally use.

This evening, I needed to get a file off my Linpsire 5.0 hard drive. Linspire 5.0 was the real first solid Linux distro that convinced me to switch and leave Windows behind. It was also the easiest to use and had the friendliest, most helpful user group and community.

I plugged the drive in. But this was the first time I was using Linspire 5.0 with my new 22-inch wide screen flat panel monitor.

No problem. Before you boot the OS, Linspire has a main menu that comes up in Grub (Great Universal BootLoader). Grub gives you a list of choices. The first choice bots Linspire. The other choices are for troubleshooting the operating system. The one I'm interested in is "ReDetect." ReDetect runs a scan and diagnostic of sorts and looks at what kind of hardware you're running. True to its name, It re-detects all the hardware on your system.

So, I selected "ReDetect." Linspire then began scanning all the hardware on my system. Linspire saw my brand new monitor, loaded the proper drivers and set the optimal resolution.

Then, the log-on screen came up.

When I logged into Linspire, my monitor had the proper Nvidia drivers running and was set to a nice resolution of 1900 x 1440. Wow! How slick is that?!

Compare that to the Windows experience of getting a new monitor to run. You have to load a couple of disks (usually the driver disk and Windows disk) in order to get the drivers and set the screen resolution. Then, after all the data is loaded, you have to reboot.

With Linux all I did was click the mouse and chose "ReDetect."

Just one more reason why I love using Linux. You'll love using Linux, too. Get Linux.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Overheating

I've been having car problems. I have a 1999 Oldsmobile Delta 88 sityh 187,000 miles. I bought it for $2500.00 with 91,000 miles. It looks brand new and runs like a top! It was a real steal!

Lately, though, it stalls while I'm driving. I could be clipping along at 55 MPH and the engine will just stop.

I have it in for service. After speaking to the service manager, they think it may be an Ignition Module problem. Basically, this is the car's onboard computer. In layman's terms (and if there's a mechanic out there, feel free to correct me), as ignition modules age, they develop more heat and run hotter. They overheat and fail. Since all points,plugs, wiring, etc. run into this module, all the processes needed to run the engine are cut off and the car stalls.

Why do I mention this? Because it's similar with computers. Whether you're running Windows or Linux, if your computer shuts down without warning, it may be a bad cooling fan. Your processor needs to be cooled. A fan is mounted atop a heat sink which sits on top of the Intel or AMD processor chip. thsi fan is constantly turning and moving the hot air out and away from the chip. If this fan no longer works, heat builds, the chip runs hotter, overheats and your computer shuts down.

So if you're computer is exhibiting this kind of behavior, before you try an anti-virus program or re-installing your OS, check your cooling fans. Open the box and make sure all fans on your computer are turning and doing their job. Swapping out a fan is easy and inexpensive. A guide on how to do this here. But do a Google search for "Replacing CPU Fan" and you'll have more results to choose from. If you'd rather not do this yourself, any computer shop replace your cooling or CPU fan, even while you wait if necessary.

Then, after you get that fan replaced and your system running, get Linux.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

A Linux Eclipse

Last night, the lunar eclipse was visible here in the northeast Ohio area. I was able to get outside and enjoyed a terrific view of it. Conditions for star-gazing were simply spectacular! The skies were clear, but the temperatures were near zero degrees! So, my viewing time was only limited to five or ten minutes. After the dogs and I had had our fill (and our toes were sufficiently frozen), it was back inside to the warmth of the house.

Luckily, my brother Jim is an astronomer. He emailed me a link where I could view the eclipse online.

so, I comfortably sat back and booted my Kiowa Linux Laptop. I opened Firefox and enjoyed a clear, warm view of the lunar eclipse. I also "grabbed" a couple of shots from the website. I did this in Firefox by right clicking the image and selecting "Save Image As." Firefox did the rest by automatically downloading the jpeg image to my desktop.

Firefox is a terrific web browser! It's fast, lightweight and can be customized in any number of ways through additional add-ons and themes. It's the default web browser found in almost all Linux distributions. It's also available for Windows and Mac users in many different languages.

Once you use Firefox, you'll quickly say goodbye to Internet Explorer. And I hope that, simply from using Firefox and seeing how great it is, you'll make the next move and get Linux.

BTW, if you want to get a great view of the next astronomical event, check out Sky Window. Our family business manufactures this item under the direction and watchful eye of Jim. Sky Window really does a wonderful job of enhancing the world of binocular astronomy. An in-depth review can be found here.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

My First Computer

I was surfing the web and came across this site which chronicles the history of computers through ads and other archival information.

I searched their site and happened on the Texas Instruments TI 99/4A. Here was my very first computer. I looked over the photos and ads and a flood of memories came back to me. Compared to todays' technology, the TI-99/4A wasn't much. But it allowed the user to program using the BASIC computer language. And using these simple commands, I was able to create, believe it or not, a few early computer games and other moving graphics.

Well, I was immediately hooked on computers ever since. And through those years, I toyed with other early PCs running MS-DOS.

Then the day came when my brother Dave mentioned that we should "go halves" and purchase a Windows PC. And Dave really wanted to get the best cutting edge technology that was currently available. To tell the truth, I was happy using a PC Clone (Leading Edge Computer) running MS DOS. I already had email and early internet access through the community based Cleveland Free-net). I didn't want to shell out the cash for a new computer. I wanted to wait for the next leap in technology.

I'll never forget what Dave told me. He said, "Mark, if you don't get on the learning curve now, you'll fall farther behind."

How right he was! I immediately saw this bit of wisdom. GROW with the technology. Learn along the way and as things develop.

As a result, we plunked down $2700.000 and purchased a Windows 3.11 Pentium 75 Computer with a 15 inch monitor, printer and HP flatbed scanner. Soon after, we had an AOL account and I was purchasing software for graphics, desktop publishing and web building. It was clear that a whole new way of computing had developed.

If the TI-99/4A opened up a new world, this Pentium system opened the universe!

And, right now, the same thing is happening with Linux. Linux is starting to explode on the computing scene. It's running desktop computers, cell phones, web sites and other devices and technology. Linux is being adopted by city governments, schools, and businesses around the world. Even top notch Hollywood effects and animation studios run Linux!

Get on the Linux learning curve now! Get Linux and grow with this dynamic and exciting Operating System. And the wonderful thing is, it'll cost you a lot less than the $2700.00 Dave and I paid to get on the first computer learning curve.

Monday, February 18, 2008

PC Ton!c. Another Great Linux Blog!

PC Ton!c is another great Linux blog! It offers information, news, and other resources for Linux users. The blog's creator, Ashutosh Mishra, is also a contributor to Kioskea.net.

PC Ton!c is a wonderful, cutting edge resource for Linux, but also offers tips and tricks for Windows users, as well.

For instance, here's a really useful post on how to run Linux within Windows. PC Ton!c really covers all the bases and I'm happy to recommend the blog to OCL readers.

OneClickLinux and PC Ton!c. Two great blogs for Linux users and PC users in general.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Linux Is A Community.

Folks always ask me if it's easy to make the move to Linux. I tell them it is. It's very easy to move to Linux. But, the big key to getting any Linux Distro to work well for you, and to make a successful and smooth move, is to get involved in the Linux community. This is not unlike what folks were doing when they first purchased Windows.

In the early Microsoft days, when Windows gave the new user a problem, a phone call was made to a friend or family member for a solution. That friend or family member was another Windows user. Thus, a community of established Windows users usually helped the new user through some of the rough spots.

The same thing is happening online in Linux communities all over the web.

The only reason why I use Linux and have had such a great time using Linspire, Freespire, and Kiowa is due to the folks in the Freespire/Linspire community. They've been here with me every step of the way. Not only did they get me up and running, but advised me on the kind of system to buy so I could continue to run Linux better and faster than ever. That system came from a community member, Mr. Gigabytes of Gigastrand International. From this community I met folks like Matt (Elinux) and got involved with his Kiowa Linux distro. Heck, I bought a Kiowa Linux laptop! I absolutely love it!

But it all happened because I logged on, introduced myself, and asked questions. And the folks up there have been more than willing to help. Everyone wants to see Linux succeed! We want to see it in the hands of more and more users every day.

It's probably the number one piece of advice I give readers on this blog...Get involved! Join a community, ask questions, help others,etc.

Linux is not just an OS. It's a community of users who are helping one another, building technlogy, and forging relationships.

I'm a Linux user. I'm a product of this helpful, generous Linux community.

Get Linux and get involved. Join your Linux distribution's forums, user group, or other online community. You'll meet some wonderful, helpful Linux users, have a safe and secure computing experience, and leave Windows headaches far behind.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Gimp Tip.

I've been using the Gimp now for a few years and have really come to love it. Since getting my larger 22-inch flat panel, The Gimp has become much easier to use.

Gimp makes use of floating tool panels. One panel for bushes, eraser, paint bucket and other tools. another panel handles brush size, navigation, layers,etc. And a main panel that houses the image you're going to edit.

These panels tend to cover one another up. You can tweak and improve the interface as I mentioned in an earlier blog, but having a larger monitor is the best way to tame Gimp. The extra screen real estate really allows you to spread things out. Panels no longer get in the way of each other.

Because these floating panels leave areas to the desktop unobscured, you can grab files and folders from your desktop on the fly. You can drag and rdrop files onto the "File" menu selection in Gimp and the image will open.

This brings us to our Gimp Tip. Many image editing programs have a library or "scrapbook" where you can store images for future use. You can then open this scrapbook (within the image editing app) and drag and drop the image into the image you're working on(usually as a new layer).

You can easily create a scrapbook for Gimp and store images for future use to edit and incorporate in all your photo projects.

On your desktop, create a new folder. I call mine "Gimp Artwork." This folder is where you'll store all your scrapbook images for Gimp.

Gimp's native file format is .xcf. The Gimp .xcf file format allows you to store all layers, transparency and other image information. You can save images toyour scrapbook in any image format (and I do this, as well), but for our purposes, we'll be saving single layer images as .xcf files. Using .xcf assures that certain properties (text editing layer, transparency, etc.) will be retained.

Now, when you have an image that you wish to use on a future Gimp project, simply save it in your Gimp Artwork as an .xcf file. The next time you need the image, simply open this folder on your desktop (it helps to change the folder view to image thumbnails), and drag and drop the image onto the Gimp File menu of the current image being edited. You can see how this is being done in the above image. The areas of interest are highlighted in red.

This newly introduced image will be imported as a new layer. And the great thing about this method is, you always know where your scrapbook is. It's easy to find and easy to backup. Whereas, with other image editors that utilize an internal scrapbook, you have to really hunt around on your hard drive to find the specific folder where all those images are stored.

I keep my Gimp scrapbook on my desktop and leave it in between Gimp's tool panels. When I need an image, I open my scrapbook folder and drag and drop onto the "File" menu." The image opens as a new layer in the image I'm currently working on.

If you've never tried Gimp, it's easy to obtain. It's free with every Linux distribution. So, Get Linux and get Gimp.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Little Tweaks Mean A Lot.

Linux is so incredibly customizable. You can tweak and change things on your desktop to your heart's content. There are a million different ways to set up your desktop! You can a make the computer as individual as you.

One such tweak allows you to change the focus of the mouse pointer. (It's little things like this tweak which makes Linux so much fun to use!) This tweak streamlines your mouse and really will save you time and "clicks" when navigating folders and directories.

Here's how it works. Open any file folder in Konqueror. Right click on the upper left hand corner icon of this window. A drop down menu appears. Select "Configure Window Behavior." It should be just above the "Close" selection.

A new window appears. On the left hand side, select "Focus." The drop down menu marked "Policy" gives you the options on how you want your mouse pointer to react. Select "Focus Follows Mouse." Select "Apply" to accept the changes and then close the window.

Now, when you're navigating through directories and folders, and you have more than one open window on your desktop, the window will become active just by passing your mouse over it. There's no need to click to activate the window!

If you prefer to click to activate windows, simply go back and change the option to "Click to Focus."

But this one little tweak saves you a lot of time navigating open windows and really cuts down on the constant clicking of your mouse. And cutting back on those clicks can save some wear and tear on your mouse.

So give this little tweak a try. it's easy to set up and youcanalways change thigs back without harming your Linux system.

From time to time, I'll be showing you other tips and tricks in customizing your Linux desktop. But you gotta first get Linux!

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Valentine's Day.

Well, another Valentine's day has rolled round and with it a virus warning from the FBI.
It appears that a link to the Storm Worm virus is being sent via an E-card. A bogus Valentine's Day E-card arrives in the recipients inbox and dupes them into clicking this link and accidentally downloading the virus on to their PC.

"The e-mail directs the recipient to click on a link to retrieve the electronic greeting card (e-card). Once the user clicks on the link, malware is downloaded to the Internet-connected device and causes it to become infected and part of the Storm Worm botnet. A botnet is a network of compromised machines under the control of a single user."

What folks fail to realize is, this virus is targeting Windows Systems! Get the target of your back! Get Linux! Linux is immune to malicious Windows' Viruses and malware. Linux is also more secure and stable than windows.

So, insure yourself of having a safe and happy Valentine's Day. Get Linux.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Frank's Corner

I recently stumbled upon a fantastic "Windows to Linux" web site! Frank's Corner is a site offering help, advice, and "how-to" for running Windows applications and games in Linux through the use of WINE.

Three is a multitude of helpful tips and ticks, Quickstart guide, FAQ, and an additional support resources.

Franks Corner can be found at:

http://frankscorner.org/index.php

Frank's Corner will help you to get Wine up and running in Linux and also help you get some of the more popular Windows applications running.

So, you now have one less reason to stay with Windows. Get Linux.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Finally! A Linux Tip!

As many readers of this blog know, I've been a long time subscriber to PC Magazine. Both in print and all their web emailing.

PC Magazine offers some great tips and tricks for most Windows problems. And if you've ever had problems with Windows, well, some of these PC Magazine tips have been heaven sent!

Today, PC magazine FINALLY offered a Linux tip for Ubuntu users!

You can see the tip here. The tip is a mini tutorial of sorts to help you configure Ubuntu Linux.

This is great news because it illustrates how Linux is penetrating the home market. If PC Magazine is offering Linux tips to its readers, then there is a demand.

So learn what many PC Magazine readers obviously have learned! Linux is easy to use in the home or office!

Get Linux.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Free Comic Book Day!

"Free Comic Book Day is a single day when participating comic book shops across North America and around the world are giving away comic books absolutely free* to anyone who comes into their stores. (* Each retailer will decide the guidelines for receiving comics.)"

The above statements come from the Free Comic Book Day website. Last year, I participated in a FCBD signing at The Toys Time Forgot, an Ohio Comic book shop. Not only were we celebrating Free Comic Book Day, but Cartoonists Day, as well.

Lots of families attended this event. Moms and dads would stop by the booth to get an autograph or sketch, and they'd often ask about my digital tools. They'd mention that their son or daughter was interested in drawing and wondered which software program they should purchase for their child?

This is when I'd pull out a Linux disk. Linux, just like many of the comics on Free Comic Book Day, is free! It comes with hundreds of software progams form drawing, sketching, writing, coloring, photo editing, etc. It's all there and the cost if free! Linux has so many graphics programs available that it really is a great introduction to the world of digital art/cartooning! And, the cost for families simply cannot be beat.

I recognize that in some areas of the graphics industry the Apple Mac is the standard tool. But how many families have $3000.00 for an Apple Mac? Add to this PhotoShop and other graphics programs and the cost can climb close to $5,000.00!

Linux is the economical and wise choice. Even if you decide to buy a Linux system, you'll still be saving thousands of dollars over buying a Mac or Windows PC. In addition, you'll have a safer and more secure computer. Linux is immune to Windows viruses and spyware.

So, whether you're interested in graphics at a professional or amateur level, Linux is a great choice! I know. I'm a nationally syndicated cartoonist and I use Linux to help create my cartoon features.

Details are still being worked out for this year's Free Comic book Day and Cartoonists Day. I'll update this blog as to where I'll be appearing. And, I'll be sure to have plenty of cartoons and Linux (Kiowa and Freepire) disks!



Saturday, February 9, 2008

Top 50 Programs.

I was surfing the internet and came across this website. It lists the top 50 programs that are closed sourced, expensive, and well, drive you crazy due to those costs and licensing restrictions.

But the great thing is, the site also lists open source alternatives to these restrictive programs.

Overall, I found the site to be a fair and informative review of open source software. It gives a balanced look at these open source programs,their strengths and weaknesses, and the likelihood you can reliably move to them and still complete your tasks.

Almost all of these open source software titles are available in Linux.


So, get rid of high priced, restrictive software. Get Linux and get cutting edge, powerful open source software.

Friday, February 8, 2008

GQView

The really great thing about Linux is all the free software immediately at your disposal. Once you have Linux installed on your computer, there are dozens of programs already pre-installed and ready for use.

If you want to explore even more software offerings, simply open which ever package manager your Linux distro runs (ie: Synpatic in Debian distributions) and download and install any of thousands of software apps!

I stumbled on one such software program while perusing the Freespire repository. (Freespire also uses CNR.com, to simplify software installation even more!) The program is GQview. GQview is an image browser that features single click access to view images and easily navigate your hard drive's directory tree. It has a very clean interface and displays all image formats including your digital photo's Exif information. And, like most Linux software, it's absolutely free!

GQview is quickly becoming my favorite image viewer. The neat thing about it is how fast it performs. It's very responsive. The one click access is a real advantage. You can also turn on filtering, so the only files displayed are image files. All the other file clutter is turned off.

So if you need a really nice, clean, yet fast, image viewer, check out GQView. But you gotta get Linux first!

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Nine Ways To Wipe Out Spyware?

I've been a longtime subscriber to PC magazine. Over the years, the magazine has given me a lot of helpful tips. Of course, this was back in the day when I only ran windows. Now that I run Linux, I've found that most of the Windows information provided by PC magazine is irrelevant.

As an example, PC Magazine is running an online article called, Nine ways to Wipe Out Spyware. You can view this article at: http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2255857,00.asp

These articles often catch my attention. Because, although they are quite helpful to folks struggling with Windows problems, the real solution is quite simple. Get Linux. Linux is immune to Windows viruses, Trojans, and spyware. with Linux, you won't need to purchase a third party software program to constantly scan your system and remove these nasty annoyances.

Linux is stable, secure, and wonderfully easy to use. The software is free and the license allows you to share it with others. And best of all, you won't need to spend hundreds of dollars in spyware scanners, anti-virus programs and subscriptions.

Get secure without breaking the bank. Get Linux.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

A Salute To Bill Gates!

video
This video of David Letterman saluting Bill Gates has been floating around the internet for a while. You can find it on Youtube.com and other video sites. And it really is pretty funny. I couldn't help but join in the fun by posting it here!

The moral of the story is, if you want to avoid Windows problems, get Linux!

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

More Gimp Image Fun.

Since I've moved to Linux, one of my favorite software applications is The Gimp. The Gimp does it all!
Why buy PhotoShop when you have The Gimp?

For instance, one neat photographic effect is illustrated above. It's a grayscale image with a splash of color for emphasis. The image was completely edited and created using The Gimp. And it was an easy process. It takes only a few steps. By the way, if you want to try this yourself, the above image ( along with others) is available at the web site of my Alma Mater, The Ohio State University! Go Buckeyes!

1.) Open up your color image.
2.) Duplicate it be selecting Image>Duplicate in the menu
3.Now convert this duplicate image to grayscale by selecting Image>Mode>Grayscale. Now you have an image with all the color removed.
4.) Convert this grayscale image back to a color mode image. Once again, select Image>Mode>RGB. We now have a grayscale image in RGB mode.
5.) Now, we need to copy the entire grayscale image to our klipboard by using Select>All, then Edit>Copy.
6.) Go back to the color image and select Edit>Paste. Now we have a new layer (the grayscale image) on top of the color image. (In Gimp, in the Layers menu, remember to right click on "Floating Selection" and select New Layer.)
7.) Now the fun begins. On this new layer, simply take out your eraser tool and carefully erase away the gray material (the flag) to reveal the color below! You can use a variety of selection tools to speed the process, but I simply used different size eraser brushes with soft edges to eliminate hard edges and blend things to achieve an overall nice effect.

To save your project with all the layers intact, select File>Save As and choose The Gimp's native file format, Gimp XCF image (.xcf).

The Gimp is easy to use and every bit as powerful as PhotoShop or any other graphics editing program. But the great thing is, Gimp is Free with Linux!

Unleash your creativity with Gimp and hundreds of other free, powerful software tools! Get Linux!

Monday, February 4, 2008

Kiowa Linxux

If you've been reading this blog on a regular basis, you know that I'm a big fan of Kiowa Linux. Kiowa Linux is based on Mandriva Linux. Mandriva is a very stable and hearty Linux distro. As much as I like Mandriva, it can be a bit intimidating to new users.

Kiowa Linux has taken all that is great with Mandriva and refined it. The folks at Kiowa have made Mandriva much friendlier. It's amazing how wonderfully powerful and easy to use Kiowa is! but,atthe same time, Kiowa is still its own distro.

Recently, I talked to Matt at Kiowa Linux and they have some really exciting things planned! If you've never tried Liux and are looking to join a forum community and learn and grow witha distro, Kiowa is a great choice! Kiowa has cutting edge features planned for its new Linux releases and some new product lines.

Simply navigate over to forum.kiowalinux.com and join the discussion. You'll become part of a growing community of Linux users and get in on the ground floor, so to speak, of an exciting growth period for this Linux distro.

Kiowa Linux built my laptop. I run Kiowa Linux on this laptop and I can hardly wait to upgrade to the newest vesion! Get Linux, Get Kiowa and get involved with the Kiowa community! You'll move away from Windows, have a stable and secure Linux OS, and meet a really nice bunch of folks.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Linux Time Machine

Linux has a rather interesting history. I recommended a documentary on Linux called Revolution OS. it traces the origins of how Linux all began. One piece of the Linux puzzle occurred when a computer science student from The University of Helsinki named Linus Torvalds posted a message to the Usenet Groups saying he was working on a free operating system.

Here's the original post archived in Google Groups.
And the rest is history. Countless programmers, entreprenuers, advocates, volunteers and others have contributed to what we know today as Linux. Linux powers computers, cell phones, servers, web sites, Google, and many other marvels of the high tech world. And the great thing is, Linux is stable, secure and, in many cases, free.

Get Linux. Get a Linux computer or simply download and install it to your current computer system. See why Linux is the best thing in computing.

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Who Needs The Goundhog? You've Got Liquid Weather!

The groundhog saw his shadow this morning and that means six more weeks of winter. But Punxsutawney Phil only makes a weather prediction once a year. If you run Linux, you can have a weather widget telling you the weather every single day of the year!

Superkaramba runs desktop widgets on your Linux system and one of the best and most popular is Liquid Weather.

Liquid Weather is a very stylish and powerful SuperKaramba widget that gives you your local weather forecast. It's highly customizable and the community is constantly building add-ons and other little components for it. You can even add local web cams from around the world and view real time snapshots of those weather conditions. And there are a number of weather maps you can view, as well. All with just a click of your mouse.

And the nicest thing about Liquid Weather is what doesn't come with it. Namely, spyware. When you install Liquid Weather, there are no spyware programs creeping around in the background inserting themselves into your system and monitoring your every move. No pop-ups or ads, either. Just a wonderful, clean little widget thanks to SuperKaramba.

So if you want Liquid Weather, you'll need SuperKaramba. To get Superkaramba, you'll need to get Linux.

Friday, February 1, 2008

Plumchoice.com? Here's Another Choice.

You've probably heard the commercial on the radio regarding plumchoice.com and other "online" internet computer repair services. For a fee, they'll remotely hook into your computer and fix whatever Windows problem you may be having.

Now, I don't think services like these are that bad of an idea. And I'll bet there are many a Windows user out there who've been helped and absolutely love the service. Plumchoice.com (and services like them) certainly do fill a need. A big need. Because Windows is so vulnerable to viruses and spyware.

But, here's another alternative. Rather than pay plumchoice.com $99.95 for spyware and virus removal, simply get Linux. You can download any number of Linux distributons for free from distrowatch.com. Once you have Linux downloaded and burned to disk, simply install it to your computer and your Windows virus, spyware and malware problems are solved.

How are they solved? Because you won't be using Windows anymore. You'll be using Linux.

Linux is immune to Windows viruses and spyware. So, you won't need services like Plumchoice.com. You save $100.00!

Get Linux!