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    • New note by bobjonkman 30 September 2022
      That "aura" around bright objects is what I saw when I first got a cataract (clouding of the lens). It wasn't bad at first, and only in one eye, so I let it go until my vision was totally obscured in that eye. Don't do that. Get your eyes checked, and maybe a referral to […]
    • Favorite 30 September 2022
      bobjonkman favorited something by hypolite: Ok, that’s what I thought, thank you for the explanations. When I wear the new glasses, anything beyond a couple of feet is doubled until my eyes adjust which takes more time than with my current glasses, and then it still is almost imperceptibly blurry, although the comparison between the […]
    • bobjonkman repeated a notice by hypolite 30 September 2022
      RT @hypolite Ok, that’s what I thought, thank you for the explanations. When I wear the new glasses, anything beyond a couple of feet is doubled until my eyes adjust which takes more time than with my current glasses, and then it still is almost imperceptibly blurry, although the comparison between the glasses makes it […]
    • New note by bobjonkman 24 September 2022
      I have not yet stopped chuckling...
    • Favorite 24 September 2022
      bobjonkman favorited something by clacke: It is impossible to decipher in how many layers if sarcasm this is written. It's glorious.decrypt.co/6234/curry-with-dav…
    • bobjonkman repeated a notice by clacke 24 September 2022
      RT @clacke It is impossible to decipher in how many layers if sarcasm this is written. It's glorious. decrypt.co/6234/curry-with-dav…
    • New note by bobjonkman 9 July 2022
      New Zealand #ProportionalRepresentation
    • Favorite 9 July 2022
      bobjonkman favorited something by blacksam: What country do Canadians threaten to move to when they don't like election outcomes? #politics #canada
    • bobjonkman repeated a notice by blacksam 9 July 2022
      RT @blacksam What country do Canadians threaten to move to when they don't like election outcomes? #politics #canada
    • New note by bobjonkman 5 July 2022
      Congratulations to Dr. Cooley, and to you! And welcome to Canada!https://twitter.com/SNOLABscience/status/1542562373193633793 I saw the news on Twitter, and said to myself "Hey, I know that person!" It's amazing how familiar we humans feel with each other using only social media...

Why I’m an E-mail Luddite

Posted by Bob Jonkman on 2nd October 2013

Statue of a Luddite

Luddite Memorial, Liversedge

The pervasive expectation of HTML everywhere came to light in a recent e-mail exchange:

Him: Bob, have a look at this video: LOLcats at work

Me: Did you intend to send a link with that?

Him: Yes, here it is: LOLcats at work

Me: Sorry, still no link. Remember, I don’t receive HTML e-mail…

Him: Wut? I’ve never heard of someone not receiving HTML e-mail!

E-mail was never designed for HTML; it is intended to be a plain-text medium. HTML is merely cobbled on, and mail clients have no standard way to render HTML messages, resulting in different displays on different mail programs. Some mail programs, especially those run from the command line, can’t show HTML rendered messages at all.

Although I use a graphical mail client (Thunderbird), I choose to not display HTML for two reasons:

1) Security: HTML mail can have Javascript code or other objects embedded. That’s a great way to get virus infections on your computer. I don’t want any code running on my computer that I didn’t put there myself.

2) Privacy: HTML mail that links to external images allows the owner of those images to track your mail usage: When you open the mail, how often you open it, the location you open it at, what computer you’re using, and whether you forward it to others (and then, when they open the mail, how often, their location, &c).

Not to mention that HTML messages are far bigger than text messages, especially when the HTML contains embedded images, fonts, and other stuff. Now, that’s not such a big deal with fast connections, unlimited download caps, and cheap disk drives, but it will still make a difference on small-format devices like phones and watches.

That said, if you do send me HTML e-mail, be sure to embed any images or LOLcat videos. That way I can still view them as static attachments, without revealing when, where, and how often I view them.

For more info have a look at the Wikipedia article on HTML e-mail

–Bob.

You can send HTML e-mail to Bob Jonkman at bjonkman@sobac.com

The Luddite Memorial, Liversedge by Tim Green is used under a CC-BYCreative Commons — Attribution 2.0 Generic — CC BY 2.0 license.

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Posted in email, privacy, security | 1 Comment »

Lightweight GNU/Linux distributions

Posted by Bob Jonkman on 13th June 2011

This is a list of lightweight GNU/Linux (or other free/libre OS) distributions.

I’m specifically looking for a free/libre operating system that will run a Graphical User Interface on a 10-year-old laptop, 700 MHz Intel CPU, 256 MiBytes RAM (but 128 MiBytes would be better), an 8 GiByte hard drive and an 800×600 screen.

If you know of any other lightweight distributions please leave a comment. Also please leave a comment if you can help fill out the chart – the distributions’ documentation is pretty inadequate when it comes to listing minimium system requirements.

Name Minimum System Requirements Windows Manager
CPU RAM Disk Space Video
Mandriva XFCE 2010 Spring         Xfce
Xubuntu         Xfce
Lubuntu 10.04 Pentium II or Celeron 128 MB 1.5 GB   LXDE
Linux Mint Xfce (201104)   114 MB     Xfce
Linux Mint 10 “Julia” – LXDE x86 processor 256 MB 3 GB 800×600 LXDE
Trisquel Mini         LXDE
Crunchbang         Openbox
SlimPup   35-50 MB 150 MB ISO    
Debian         Fluxbox
Arch Linux 2010.05 i686 or x86_64 64 MB 7.5 GB   xmonad
Tiny Core Linux i486DX 48 MB   TinyX
WCLP 25 MHz 486 16 MB 400 MB    
antiX PII 266 MHz 64 MB 2.2 GB VGA  
Dragora GNU/Linux-libre Intel 486 64MB (1GB suggested) 4 GB VGA  
Bodhi Linux 300+ MHz 128 MB 2.5 GB   Enlightenment

I expect this post to be a continuous work-in-progress.

–Bob.

Added 14 June 2011: Thanx for the suggestions from @dwa, @headphonica, @darkestkhan, @flying_squirrel and @circuidipity, all added above.

Added 17 June 2011: @schestowitz points me to a Linux Devices article on Tiny Core Linux.

Added 28 July 2011: @chaslinux reminded me of The Working Centre’s distribution, WCLP.

Added 4 August 2011:Just saw antiX mentioned on Identi.ca.

Added 12 October 2013: @tekk writes: @bobjonkman If driver support isn’t an issue, maybe look at http://dragora.org . I’d also put slackware on the list for that, maybe freebsd as well?

Added 23 November 2013: Bodhi Linux

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Posted in FLOSS, GNU/Linux, Hardware, Operating System | 5 Comments »

 
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