Wednesday, July 24, 2013

How Ubuntu Edge Could Change The Future


The Ubuntu Edge Smartphone is an amazing "phone", even better than those by the big companies. That's just the surface of it though (pun not intended). Here's some reasons you may or may not have thought about that would be a good reason for backing this phone for future innovations.


Futuristic Specs:
  1. Fastest multi-core CPU - It hasn't been put in stone what CPU this will be, but it will most likely be an ARM CPU. Why? See point #4 in the next section below.
  2. 4GB of RAM - My computer runs Ubuntu 12.04 LTS, which is a version of Ubuntu's desktop Linux distro (distribution). While running a few applications, it only manages to use up a little over 1GB of RAM. Now think of what you could do with an extra 3 GB of RAM -- on a phone!
  3. 128 GB SSD - This phone is promising this much storage. I don't believe there's any phone that promises this out of the box. You can store all the things. Why would you want this much storage on a phone? Read into the next section.
  4. Dual 4G LTE antennas - This should allow you to be compatible with US or UK networks. Not just those, but this phone should work with most, if not all, GSM networks worldwide. They'll do testing on this prior to release.
  5. Silicon-Anode Lithium Ion battery - All I can say is that it's supposed to have much greater capacity than any battery we're using in the majority of phones today. Wiki here.
  6. Sapphire Crystal 4.5 inch display - Sapphire has a hardness of 9 on the Mohs scale of mineral hardness. You might want to look into this yourself if you want to really know what this means, but I've seen screen protectors that advertise this level of hardness as well.
Technological/Societal Breakthroughs:
  1. This phone is aiming to be more than just a phone. It's aiming to be your desktop replacement. Ok, ok. Let me be realistic here, this will probably be your laptop replacement. A monitor can be connected using the MHL connector, along with your Bluetooth devices (keyboard/mouse) to transform your phone into a full desktop experience. I would rather carry this and pack the peripherals in the trunk of the car for when I really needed them.
  2. Let's not forget that this will have connection to 4G and Wifi connections. With that being the case and this phone having the option of transforming into a full desktop, who will need to use a 4G hotspot for a laptop or other device, when your phone can be both? This will completely change how the cell phone companies will have to market their hotspot capabilities. I'm of the opinion that we shouldn't have to pay for something the hardware should be able to do on its own. We bought the data, let us use it.
  3. This phone, like many other subsidized phones, will allow you to experience the unlocked device from the beginning. Use it on whatever GSM/LTE network that supports it. It won't care. It also won't have your carrier's default bloatware on it. Also, since this is being done by Ubuntu, you can be sure they will provide the phone with open source software. You have access to make software yourself, if you so choose. They encourage it.
  4. This will be the first dual-booting phone. If you are really tied to your Android phone, like I am at the moment, you won't have to give that up. You'll have access to Android. Just reboot and voila! You've got yourself a super Android device that will be exclusive to this funding project. This will most likely be reason enough for the phone to have a ARM processor, as most Android devices use just that. Ubuntu is trying to get the word out that innovation shouldn't be stifled.
  5. I've used Ubuntu, if there's one thing I wouldn't give up over Windows it's this: one central application for updates. The application checks at regular intervals for new software for all of my applications. If it finds something, it will let me know. Open source is always changing and improving. Ubuntu is focusing on sending out updates on a monthly basis for three years. This will help you stay ahead of the curve when it comes to bugs and security vulnerabilities, unlike your carrier's cell phone that may not get updated as frequently because the bloatware needs to be updated as well (or some other reason).

Please Support The Project
This project has a ways to go. The funding goals may seem high, but remember this is aiming to be your phone and desktop (or laptop) replacement. The technology is more advanced than anything I've seen, so it will inevitably invoke the price tag of superior technology. After all, Shuttleworth is marketing this as the Formula 1 car in the Sedan market. If you can't afford one of the phones, please donate in anyway you can whether than be monetary donations or donations of your time to advertise this great crowd-sourcing campaign to others. I've backed the project, and I wish them the best.

Friday, May 03, 2013

Email Encryption

This may interest some out there. Learning all the cryptography stuff is cool, and we don't necessarily like others reading our emails. Here's a video explaining more and goes through some simple steps to get you started.



I have created keys using GPG on the Linux terminal, added my account to Thunderbird, and installed the Enigmail extension. I have added a link to my public key, so that anyone may now encrypt emails with my public key and send them on to me. Please include your public key as an attachment if you would like me to use yours in response to your emails. I plan to sign all my emails with my key to show official correspondence.

Saturday, February 09, 2013

Real Python for Web Development via Kickstarter

Last year, I backed Fletcher Heisler's Real Python course and it was a refreshing type of experience reading through the ebook and working through the exercises. It seemed like the exercises built upon themselves and were simple enough that you could do them easily, but during the process also get excited about other ways you could apply the code. Needless to say, I think my money was well spent especially when I get free updates for life (which he did update it since releasing).

I've been browsing Kickstarter recently and noticed a new project on python. It is called Real Python for Web Development by Michael Herman. It focuses on using python for the web, and if you pledge $25 you get access to Fletcher's course and Michael's course. Pretty good bundle, if you ask me. You get 2 books on python for the price you might pay for a single book.

That's just my take on things, and I don't get paid to do anything for them. If you want more information, check out their Kickstarter page or watch the video below. I've already pledged my support.