The Trinity of Search Engines

Microsoft has voiced concern that Yahoo’s intended deal with Google would violate anti-trust laws. The deal would allow Yahoo to place Google advertisements on their site and collect revenue from them. The General Counselor for Microsoft cited alleged comments from Yahoo Chief Jerry Yang regarding a “bipolar” market with Yahoo and Microsoft at one end, and Google at the other.

(Yang) said ‘If we do this deal with Google, Yahoo will become part of Google’s pole and Microsoft,’ he said, ‘would not be strong enough in this market to remain a pole of its own,”‘ Smith told the Senate Judiciary Committee’s antitrust subcommittee on Tuesday.

I find this statement rather ironic since Microsoft recently attempted to acquire Yahoo. After Yahoo’s public chastening of the software mogul, Microsoft is now backing one of the main investors, Carl Icahn, to obtain a controlling share of Yahoo and clean house amongst Yahoo’s committee members.

In defense of the deal, Google’s Chief Legal Officer David Drummond stated “Google and Yahoo will remain fierce competitors. This agreement will not remove a competitor from the field.”

The full story, albeit on Yahoo, is available here.

Ms Truetype Fonts on openSUSE 11

I recently watched an interesting film on font design that was a reminder of how fonts seem to live and breathe beside us day in and day out, often times going unnoticed. In an age where the sheer volume of information is overwhelming, the subtleties are sometimes lost, and sometimes make all the difference, speaking to our subconscious in ways we may not understand.

Fonts have intrigued me since I stumbled upon the vast storehouse within MS Word. Not that we were allowed to use them in school, mind you. I remember being given a list of fonts that were approved for graded papers in school. I think every student has has the conversation with his/herself that goes along the lines of “If I changed the font from Times New Roman to Verdana, would it look like I wrote more?” Perhaps it was this sort of almost forbidden nature of the vast array of fonts that has held my curiosity.

Microsoft’s Truetype fonts on Linux are always a bit of a dance with the devil. Since they are proprietary most Linux distributions will not include them in the default installation and only use fonts licensed under the GPL These fonts handle the day to day applications fairly well. There are some instances, however, when a web page, or a Powerpoint presentation will not render correctly, completely, or not at all. Our culture is so entrenched in these fonts that it’s only when you cannot use them that you notice just how common they really are.

In previous releases, SUSE to provided MS Truetype fonts through their online updater after installation. As of this post, openSUSE 11.0 provides no such update through the official channels. Luckily, the BuildService has provided the community with the ability to easily add and access packages built by other members of the community. Below are links for 1-click install to both MS webcore-fonts, and webcore-fonts-vista. These two packages should give you all the lovely pretty fonts that we’ve become so accustomed to.

Update: Check back after each release of openSUSE’s 11.x series for updated packages.

Update 2: As of 11.4, the fonts are no longer automatically installed during the initial update; however, they are still available via the update repository under “fetchmsttfonts.”

Behold: the Atom

Intel AtomHi folks! I know it’s been a while since I actually posted anything new instead of just updating links and information. Rest assured, there’s a few new articles in the cue. 😉 In the meantime, I’ve stumbled across an interesting read from Tom’s Hardware: an in depth review of Intel’s new Atom processor.

The Atom line comes in close quarters with Asus’ upcoming revised EeePC 901 and 1000. A hearty thanks goes to the good folks at Distrowatch for reporting on Linux ultra-portables at Computex. Check out their story and see why you may not be happy about the direction Asus is taking the EeePC.

The other intriguing tidbit from the same story is Acer’s break with Microsoft and the introduction of the Aspire one. More information can be found at UMPCportal. The Aspire one is part of the avalanche of low cost ultra-portable laptops soon to be available–all competing for your oh, so precious dollar. With such stiff competition around the corner, prices are sure to drop to an even more competitive level in a few month’s time. Just in time for back to school sales late Summer to mid Fall.

Nvidia drivers for openSUSE 11

Nvidia drivers are now available for openSUSE 11.0. Simply copy and paste the link to the Nvidia repo into YaST. ftp://download.nvidia.com/opensuse/11.0

Impatient to get your system up and running? Try one-click install:

Geforce 6 and newer

Nvidia Geforce 6 and newer

Nvidia Legacy Geforce FX (5xxx)

Nvidia Legacy Geforce FX (5xxx)

Nvidia Legacy (Geforce 4 and older, TNT)

Nvidia Legacy (Geforce 4 and older, TNT)

Update: Be sure to check back after each openSUSE release in the 11.x series for updated drivers.

Windows XP Sp3 Access Denied Error

WinXpHaving just tried a couple times to install Sp3 and having still received this error–one that frighteningly hasn’t been resolved yet in Sp3–I thought I’d post a quick guide on how to get around this problem using some wicked voodoo The information contained in this guide was taken from here.

If there are any previous installations of either beta or release candidate versions of Sp3, then you must uninstall them before installing the final version.

Download and install subinact.exe.

Open Notepad (Start Menu-All Programs-Accessories-Notepad) and copy and paste the text below into the new Notepad document:

subinacl /subkeyreg HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE /grant=administrators=f /grant=system=f
subinacl /subkeyreg HKEY_CURRENT_USER /grant=administrators=f /grant=system=f
subinacl /subkeyreg HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT /grant=administrators=f /grant=system=f
subinacl /subdirectories %SystemDrive% /grant=administrators=f /grant=system=f
subinacl /subdirectories %windir%*.* /grant=administrators=f /grant=system=f
secedit /configure /cfg %windir%\inf\defltbase.inf /db defltbase.sdb /verbose

Save-As “reset.cmd” (yes, including the quotation marks) to C:\Program Files\Windows Resource Kits\Tools.

Now, Open My Computer and double-click the file you just created in C:\Program Files\Windows Resource Kits\Tools.

Wait for the program to finish running before continuing on (yes, it takes a while, that’s normal).

Download and install Windows XP Service Pack 3 (which, although on Microsoft’s servers, is noticeably absent from their website).

Welcome to Service Pack 3 🙂

Update: Don’t bother looking for Sp3 on Microsoft’s official website. Microsoft has pulled Sp3 for XP as well as Sp1 for Vista from their website due to

a compatibility issue between Microsoft Dynamics Retail Management System (RMS) and Windows XP SP3 and Windows Vista Service Pack 1 (SP1). Microsoft Dynamics RMS is a retail chain management solution for small and midsize customers.

Update: 5-16-08: Sp3 is now available through Microsoft’s Windows update as well as in their download center. It’s about time!

Windows XP Sp3 Has Arrived!

Windows XpMicrosoft has officially released Service Pack 3 as of this morning. I had heard from an unconfirmed source that they had only just finished and released it to partners one or two days ago. Although I couldn’t find anything on Microsoft’s website about Sp3 (maybe I’m just blind), I did find this link (md5sum: bb25707c919dd835a9d9706b5725af58) to download Sp3 directly. As always, remember: backup, backup, BACKUP before installing (see above post). 😉

Windows XP Sp3 Release Date

WinXpWhile doing some research online, I came across this bit of information from Neowin: Microsoft will make Sp3 for XP available for download by the general public April 29th. Sp3 won’t hit automatic updates until June 10th, however. More information from Neowin available here.

What’s the big deal about another service pack for an already aged operating system? How does as much as a 10% performance boost sound? One author even suggested that users should upgrade from Vista to XP Sp3. While last month’s Sp1 for Vista provided countless bug fixes, benchmarks have shown that overall performance is actually slower than pre-Sp1. The real-world user experience sometimes is far different from synthetic benchmarks.

If you’re curious about Sp3 for XP, I’d recommend you head over to Paul Thurrott’s Faq.

Oh, and a word of warning for those of you who would be tempted to try the Release Candidate 2 Refresh…Out of impatience, I tried installing this on my system, and after several failed attempts and a good deal of voodoo (aided by searching Google), I finally was able to.