Tuesday, October 28, 2008

10 fun and/or useful things to do at Ubuntu’s command-line — Ubuntu Kung Fu

Ah, the command-line! Refuge for the scoundrel, proving ground for the true expert, tool of choice for the power-user.

The following 10 tips explain how to do cool and interesting things at the command-line. They’re not specific to Ubuntu but they were written with Ubuntu in mind, and have not been tested on other distros. But all should work on most versions of Linux or even Unix.

10 fun and/or useful things to do at Ubuntu’s command-line — Ubuntu Kung Fu

Sunday, October 26, 2008

OpenTTD: Business Simulator

OpenTTD is an open source clone of the Microprose game “Transport Tycoon Deluxe”, a popular game originally written by Chris Sawyer.

It attempts to mimic the original game as closely as possible while extending it with new features.

OpenTTD is licensed under the GNU General Public License version 2.0.

OpenTTD is modeled after the original Transport Tycoon game by Chris Sawyer and enhances the game experience dramatically.

Many features were inspired by TTDPatch while others are original.

review from http://www.ixibo.com/


Friday, October 24, 2008



America’s Army is one of the ten most popular PC action games played online. It provides players with the most authentic military experience available, from exploring the development of Soldiers in individual and collective training to their deployment in simulated missions in the War on Terror.

In America’s Army: Special Forces, the follow-up to America’s Army: Operations which was released on July 4, 2002, players attempt to earn Green Beret status by completing individual and collective training missions drawn from the Special Forces Assignment and Selection (SFAS) process.

Players who complete the SFAS process have the opportunity to take on elite Special Forces roles and are qualified to play in multiplayer missions with units ranging from the elite 82d Airborne Division to the 75th Ranger Regiment.
Includes the complete game America’s Army: Operations.


Wednesday, October 22, 2008

9 tips for Ubuntu notebook users — Ubuntu Kung Fu

Here are some tips for Ubuntu users who use notebook computers, including how to sync files effortlessly between a laptop and desktop, how to switch CPU speeds on the fly from the desktop, how to power-save your hard disk, and more. Only one or two are specific to notebooks so desktop users may find them interesting too.

All are taken from my brand new book Ubuntu Kung Fu, which contains over 300 other fun and useful tips for Ubuntu. The book has been referred to as “a fantastic compendium of useful, uncommon Ubuntu knowledge” by Ubuntu expert Eric Hewitt. Ubuntu Kung Fu is available from all good bookstores or you can buy the PDF version for just $22 by clicking here.

9 tips for Ubuntu notebook users — Ubuntu Kung Fu

Monday, October 20, 2008

RACER:The Real Deal

Racer is a free car simulation game, It is using real car physics to get a realistic feeling. Cars, tracks, scenes and such can be created with relative simplicity in mind (compared to other driving simulations). The 3D and other file formats are, or should be, documented. Editors and support programs are also available to get a very flexible and expandable simulator. It uses OpenGL for rendering.

It attempts to do well at the physics section, trying to create life-like cars to emphasize car control and doesn’t cut back on realism in the interest of fun. If you’ve played Grand Prix Legends from Papyrus, you’ll know what I’m talking about.
incar_monza_lg alpha_lg

More Information on RACER

Download RACER game


The best anti virus of 2008


Lifehacker Faceoff: Battle of the Linux Distros

In theory, any computer running Linux can be custom-built and tweaked down to the very last bit. In reality, a first-time Linux user wants to grab an install CD, get a working desktop, and do their own thing from there. Lots of Linux distributions make claims about being easy to use, fast, or stable, but what does that mean for a non-programmer trying out a Linux system for the first time? Today we're taking a look at the real differences between three popular distributions of open-source software, and offering our readers their chance to weigh in on why they like their own particular open-source OS.

Editor's note: The summaries below are by no means conclusive, and each is based on an installation of the default, GNOME-based desktop of each distribution by an editor trying to keep an open mind. As with most things Linux, your mileage will vary depending on hardware support, application preference, and limits of patience.

Lifehacker Faceoff: Battle of the Linux Distros

Screenshot Tour: First Look at Ubuntu 8.10 "Intrepid Ibex" Beta

The next version of Ubuntu's free Linux operating system, dubbed "Intrepid Ibex," is due out Oct. 30, but the beta release is up for grabs. Although the desktop hasn't been reshaped, the features tweaked just a little bit, and most of the work focused on compatibility and usability (not that those are bad things, by any means), there are still some neat new tools and tweaks that are worth checking out. Read on for our picture-filled take on the new Ubuntu.

Installation and boot-up

The basics of putting a live CD in your drive, trying the desktop or installing the system are basically the same as with Hardy Heron, with a few welcome differences. The most confusing/imposing part of the process, the partition editor, shows you a graphical view of what you're doing, thereby explaining what each option does a lot better.

Ibex also supports importing browser data, backgrounds, music and pictures from Windows XP and, new to this version, Vista. Once you've installed the system and booted up, you might notice a new setting in the multi-boot menu: "Last successful boot." That's an indication that Ubuntu keeps track of which Linux kernels actually work for your system, and lets it delete old ones and prevent them from cluttering up the boot menu.

Screenshot Tour: First Look at Ubuntu 8.10 "Intrepid Ibex" Beta

Ubuntu: Ubuntu 8.10 Gets Optional DarkRoom Theme

Ubuntu 8.10, the next release of the Linux distro we looked at earlier this month, will have a much-requested "DarkRoom" theme available, though the lighter Human remains the default. A full screen of the DarkRoom desktop is below. [via]

Ubuntu: Ubuntu 8.10 Gets Optional DarkRoom Theme

Linux Newbie Guide by Stan, Peter and Marie Klimas

ver. 0.201 2004-07-22 by Stan, Peter and Marie Klimas
The latest version of this guide is available at http://linux-newbie.sunsite.dk.
Copyright (c) <1999-2004> by Peter and Stan Klimas. Your feedback, comments, corrections, and improvements are appreciated. Send them to linux_nag@canada.com This material may be distributed only subject to the terms and conditions set forth in the Open Publication License, v1.0, 8 or later http://opencontent.org/openpub/ with the modification noted in lnag_licence.html.

(Click this icon to access the counter for this page)

Intro. We are relative Linux newbies (with Linux since Summer 1998). We run mostly RedHat and Mandrake -> the solutions might not be directly applicable to other Linux distributions (although most of them probably will be). Hope this helps; we try to be as practical as possible. Of course, we provide no warranty whatsoever. If you spotted a bad error or would like to contribute a part on a topic of your choice, we would like to hear from you.

Linux Newbie Guide by Stan, Peter and Marie Klimas

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Do stuff without touching the mouse

If you want to run an application, just hit Alt + F2 and then type the name of the program. If it needs to run with root privileges, just type gksu beforehand. For example, to run GNOME Terminal, you would type terminal.

To run Gedit, type gedit. If the program is command line, check the Run In Terminal box (use the Tab key to move from field to field in the dialog box and hit the Space to select a field). This will then open a terminal window and run the command, but be aware that the terminal window will then close as soon as the command has finished, so you won’t be able to inspect the output.

Want to browse to a file system location, but too lazy to grab the mouse and click the Places menu? Hit the forward slash (/), and then type the path into the dialog box that appears.

Want to rename a file but don’t want to use the mouse? Just ensure the file is highlighted (use the cursor keys to highlight it if necessary) and hit F2. Then type the new filename.

To change the file extension too (which isn’t highlighted for deletion by default), just hit Ctrl + a and then type the complete new filename.

How To: Create Your Own Linux Recovery Disc

Linux.com writes up a helpful guide to creating your own custom system recovery boot disc using an Ubuntu 8.04 CD image, a little command line work, and a few recommended emergency tools, including the partition format/restore tool GParted, e2undel, a file recovery tool, and anything else you might need if your hard drive, RAM, or anything else on your system suddenly decides it doesn't want to work.

The guide requires a good bit of command line work, but it also lets you add whatever programs you'd like to have when you come back from the brink, and helps you strip out programs you don't to boot faster. For a similar (but pre-compiled) hard drive-fixing tool, check out Gina's guide to using the System Rescue CD.

How To: Create Your Own Linux Recovery Disc

Thursday, October 16, 2008

FlightGear Flight Simulator

FlightGear is an open-source project. This means as long as you abide by the terms of the GPL license you may freely download and copy FlightGear. Anyway can have easy and open access to the latest development source code. Being an open-source project, we have made our file formats open and easily accessible. We support standard 3D model formats and much of the simulator configuration is controlled through XML based ASCII files. Writing 3rd party extensions for FlightGear (or even directly modifying the FlightGear source code) is straightforward and doesn’t require a large amount of reverse engineering. This makes FlightGear an attractive option for use in private, commercial, research, or hobby projects.

FlightGear is known to run on Windows, Linux, Mac OS-X, FreeBSD, Solaris, and IRIX platforms allowing the user run on their platform of preference.

Extensive and Accurate World Scenery Data Base

  • Over 20,000 real world airports included in the full scenery set.
  • Correct runway markings and placement, correct runway and approach lighting.
  • Taxiways available for many larger airports (even including the green center line lights when appropriate.)
  • Sloping runways (runways change elevation like they usually do in real life.)
  • Directional airport lighting that smoothly changes intensity as your relative view direction changes.
  • World scenery fits on 3 DVD’s. (I’m not sure that’s a feature or a problem!) But it means we have pretty detailed coverage of the entire world.
  • Accurate terrain worldwide, based on the most recently released SRTM terrain data.) 3 arc second resolution (about 90m post spacing) for North and South America, Europe, Asia, Africa, and Australia.
  • Scenery includes all vmap0 lakes, rivers, roads, railroads, cities, towns, land cover, etc.
  • Nice scenery night lighting with ground lighting concentrated in urban areas (based on real maps) and headlights visible on major highways. This allows for realistic night VFR flying with the ability to spot towns and cities and follow roads.
  • Scenery tiles are paged (loaded/unloaded) in a separate thread to minimize the frame rate hit when you need to load new areas.

FlightGear implements extremely accurate time of day modeling with correctly placed sun, moon, stars, and planets for the specified time and date. FlightGear can track the current computer clock time in order to correctly place the sun, moon, stars, etc. in their current and proper place relative to the earth. If it’s dawn in Sydney right now, it’s dawn in the SIM right now when you locate yourself in virtual Sydney. The sun, moon, stars, and planets all follow their correct courses through the sky. This modeling also correctly takes into account seasonal effects so you have 24 hour days north of the arctic circle in the summer, etc. We also illuminate the correctly placed moon with the correctly placed sun to get the correct phase of the moon for the current time/date, just like in real life.

The intention of FlightGear is to look nice, but not at the expense of other aspects of a realistic simulator. Our focus is not on competing in the “game” market and not on the ultra-flashy graphic tricks.

The result is a simulator with moderate hardware requirements to run at smooth frame rates. You can be reasonably happy on a $500-1000 (USD) machine (possibly even less if you are careful) and don’t necessarily need $3000 (USD) worth of new hardware like you do with the many of the newest games.

That said, the more hardware you throw at FlightGear, the better it looks and runs, so don’t feel like you have to chuck your expensive new hardware if you just purchased it. :-)

A number of networking options allow FlightGear to communicate with other instances of FlightGear, GPS receivers, external flight dynamics modules, external autopilot or control modules, as well as other software such as the Open Glass Cockpit project and the Atlas mapping utility.

A generic input/output option allows for a user defined output protocol to a file, serial port or network client.
A multi player protocol is available for using FlightGear on a local network in a multi aircraft environment, for example to practice formation flight or for tower simulation purposes.

The powerful network options make it possible to synchronize several instances of FlightGear allowing for a multi-display, or even a cave environment. If all instances are running at the same frame rate consistently, it is possible to get extremely good and tight synchronization between displays

FlightGear Flight Simulator

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

How To: Load Desktop Backgrounds Immediately in Linux

When logging into Ubuntu or most any GNOME-based Linux system, users see a blank one-color screen until the actual desktop is loaded—which can make one feel like something's broken, or at least make your boot experience less fluid.

One intrepid Ubuntu hacker, however, shows how to banish the blank screen and have GNOME display your chosen background image or color right away.

The tutorial requires installing an "xloadimage" package in Ubuntu, but the open-source package is available in many distributions.

How To: Load Desktop Backgrounds Immediately in Linux

Monday, October 13, 2008

Linux Tip: p7zip Adds Built-In 7-Zip Tools to Ubuntu

The Tombuntu blog points out a seriously helpful package available in Ubuntu's extended repositories that make creating super-efficient 7-Zip archives simple and fast, whether you're right-clicking or working with a command line. Run this command to install it:
sudo apt-get install p7zip
Users of other Linux distros should find a similar package in their own sources. Once installed, creating compressed archives for storing or emailing is as simple as selecting the files, right-clicking, and choosing "Create Archive," and de-compressing just as simple.

Linux Tip: p7zip Adds Built-In 7-Zip Tools to Ubuntu

Sunday, October 12, 2008

Ask The Readers: Would a Prettier Linux Make You Switch?

prettylinux.png Ubuntu founder Mark Shuttleworth (who we interviewed last year) announced that he's out to make Linux a better-looking operating system than Mac OS X—within two years. An ambitious goal! At O'Reilly's OSCON conference this week, Shuttleworth said:
"I think the great task in front of us in the next two years is to lift the experience of the Linux desktop from something stable and usable and not pretty, to something that's art," Shuttleworth said. "Think of the way the iPhone uses a pure software experience, it abstracts away all the hardware," he said. "You can paint anything on the screen because it's all software."
Everyone loves eye candy on their desktop—Apple's record-setting Mac sales can attest to that—but is looks is the main hurdle for Linux adoption amongst Normals? Seems like the inability to run Windows and Mac-only software like Microsoft Office or Outlook/Entourage natively, and niggly problems like Wi-Fi and video driver incompatibilities are the biggest problems.

What about you? Would a better-looking Linux make you switch? Or is it deeper than that? Tell us what would get you to go Linux all the way (or what got you, if you're already there) in the comments. Gorgeous Linux desktop image by Andrew Katzman.

Ask The Readers: Would a Prettier Linux Make You Switch?

Monday, October 06, 2008

Cube 2: Sauerbraten

Free & Open Source… single and multi player 1st person shooter game with some satisfying fast old school game play. A large variety of game play modes from classic SP to fast one on one Multi player and objective based team play.

The engine, though designed for simplicity and elegance as opposed to feature & eye candy checklists, still competes nicely.

Game Features

  • Game Play is very similar to Doom 2 / Quake 1
  • Many multi player game play modes, most in team play variants as well: death match, efficiency, tactics, capture (domination/battlefield style), CTF (capture the flag) etc.
  • Master server & in game server browser.
  • Lag-free game play experience.
  • Two single player modes: DMSP (fight a monster invasion on any DM map), classic SP (progression driven SP like other games)
  • 7 weapons tuned for maximum satisfaction: double barrel shotgun, rocket launcher, machine gun, rifle, grenade launcher, pistol, fist.

Weapons and Goodies

No. Weapon Damage Reload Dam/sec Similarity

0 fist 50 0.25 sec 200 quake3 gauntlet
1 shotgun 20 x 10 1.4 sec 143 doom2 SSG (wide angle, but less than in doom2)
2 chaingun 30 0.1 sec 300 quake LG (mild spread at distance)
3 rocket launcher 120 0.8 sec 150 quake RL (splash damage)
4 rifle 100 1.5 sec 66 quake 2 RG
5 grenade launcher 75 0.5 sec 100 any quake GL, except faster but less damaging
6 pistol 25 0.5 50 quake SG, but more precise

The player has available all weapons when he spawns, but no ammo for them (except 5 shells), 100 health, and 50 weak Armour (20% absorption).

Items that can be picked up:

  • 6 types of ammo (10 shells, 5 rockets, 20 bullets, 5 rifle rounds, 10 grenades, 30 pistol ammo) (to a max of 30/15/60/15/30/120, re-spawn 12/9/6 seconds)
  • health (adds 25 to a max of MAXHEALTH (initially 100), respawn 20/15/10 seconds)
  • health boost (adds 10 to your MAXHEALTH until the end of the current map, respawn 60 seconds)
  • light Armour (100, absorbs 40% of damage, respawn 20 seconds)
  • heavy armour (200, absorbs 60% of damage, respawn 20 seconds)
  • quad powerup (4 x damage for 20 seconds, respawn 60 seconds)

Health and ammo respawn depends on number of players in the game, the numbers given are for 1-2, 3-4, and 5+ player games respectively.

More Information About Cube

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Cube Engine Games