Technology changes in 2010
Technology that has come and gone from my life in 2010, and new stuff
I've learnt. More than I expected!
These notes are really for me to look back at over the years, but you
might find them interesting.
Things gone from my life. Gone but not forgotten :-
- Mutt - finally replaced with
Mutt is a terminal based email client, just in case you haven't
heard of it. It works really well for power users, is really
configurable, but in these days of HTML emails and attachments it
was no longer keeping up. I loved him - he was a faithful mutt,
but he had to go. (Actually he is still there at the command line
ready to go if needed - but keep it under your hat!)
- Courier V34
modem - years
overdue, I finally disconnected it and consigned it to the pit of
oblivion. It used to receive faxes, but I don't think anyone has
sent one for several years. It also used to run a BBS and an
Internet node, which was useful at times, but now GPRS/3G/Wifi is
everywhere I want to go it is no longer needed.
- ISDN -
128k of digital goodness just wasn't good enough any more and
became too expensive. Great in its hey-day with 2 channels, 10
numbers and a whopping 64k digitial Internet connection. Obsoleted
by ADSL and
& Symbian - sorry...
we've had good times, but I've found someone else
- KDE - you worked really well until version
4 where the bugs and the slowness really kicked in.
- Usenet - This was my first
hint of online communities on the Internet in 1994. Unfortunately
the cool kids have moved on, and so, reluctantly, have I!
New technology :-
- Thunderbird -
for people with complicated email lives the plugin system makes
life bearable! Here are my top plugins
- Nostalgy - adds keyboard shortcuts to save, copy, goto folders
- Quickfolders - Put your favourite folders along the top
- Copy Sent to Current - copy sent mail to the current folder
not the Sent folder - makes a new and better way of doing
- Display Mail User Agent - snoop on what other people use for
their mail client
- Enigmail - Use PGP to sign/encrypt your emails seamlessly
- External Editor - edit emails in your favourite editor (eg
- Identity Chooser - If you use multiple identities you need
- Mail Redirect - proper bounce of email (not forward)
- IMAP -
makes it easy to migrate your email setup. You can still use it
with procmail so some things haven't changed ;-) I can use it
with my Android phone and the excellent
- Blogofile - which makes this (fully
static) website. It replaces a pile of crufty hand built python
scripts which did the same thing, just not nearly as well!
- Ubuntu on the desktop - I finally gave
in and replaced Debian testing
with Ubuntu on my main laptop so I can
spend less time fixing stuff and more time doing real work! Debian
still rules on the server though.
- VOIP - I've
signed up with a 100% Voip provider and migrated my 10 telephone
numbers to them. It went reasonably smoothly! I took the ISDN card
out of my Asterisk PBX. We've been doing this at work for ages -
it seemed like time to migrate at home too.
- Android - is Google's new phone
operating system. It runs on Linux and is mostly open source which
are big positives in my view. I've been enjoying my Android phone
greatly and have written a number of applications -
Oxo3d is one.
- Gnome - well not new actually, I last
gave Gnome up in about 2005 when I got irritated at no longer
being able to edit my menus. Unfortunately KDE 4 isn't shaping up
for me, so it is hello again!
Tech books I've read this year. No python books this year - I think
I've read them all now!
- Java in a
(again) programming to write Android programs. I learnt original
Java ages ago, but is is quite a different experience with generic
types. Still not my favourite language - reminds me too much of
C++, but bearable.
- Programming In
just for fun - maybe I'll use it with Android one day. Scala is
one of the new breed of languages which runs on the Java VM. Scala
is a (mostly) functional language created by one of the creators
of Java itself.
- Version Control with
distributed revision control system. Very clever idea with lots
and lots of command lines to explore. If it scales to the Linux
kernel then surely it is good enough for my projects?
- BGP: Building Reliable Networks with the Border Gateway
how the Internet really works!
- Unlocking Android: A Developer's
how to make Android applications
yes it is coming - IPv4 addresses are running out very soon.
These are affiliate links, so if you click then buy I'll earn a few
pence towards my next tech book!