Archive for March, 2008



timsamoff flickr image from OSiM 2008

Jamie Bennett

LinuxUK Owner.

Jamie Bennett is a veteran of the games and amusement industry having worked for successful companies such as Electrocoin and JvH Gaming B.V. He is also a long term contributor to open source software having started using it some 15 years ago.

Since graduating from Bradford University in 2001 (simultaneously working for Electrocoin) Jamie has specialized in embedded development, particularly in the field of embedded Linux and graphical user interfaces. Heading development on projects such as the Linux from Scratch automated build tools and working with developers on Nokia’s Maemo platform, Jamie has a wealth of experience. Currently Jamie is working on the python and clutter based Entertainer media center project.

If you would like to know more about Jamie’s professional background, a link to his LinkedIn profile page can be found here

View Jamie Bennett's profile on LinkedIn

If you would like to contact Jamie, or any other member of the team at LinuxUK please use the contact button at the top of the page.


Thinkfinger on Ubuntu 8.04 Beta

Ubuntu 8.04 (Hardy Heron) Beta works great on my laptop of choice, the Dell XPS M1330 but one of the issues I came across was with the finger print reader. This does work but not out of the box.

One thing that caught me out was that Hardy comes with partial support via thinkfinger-tools which in the end caused me a problem. After reading that thinkfinger-tools was in the repo’s I installed it using apt-get. Then I followed the excellent tutorial over on the Ubuntu wiki at . This looked promising as everywhere a password was required it would also ask for a finger swipe instead. The only problem was that it wouldn’t accept the finger swipe no matter what I did.

To cut a long story short, the source install conflicted with the version apt-get installed. A quick apt-get remove thinkfinger-tools and an installation from source again as per the wiki page worked a treat. I now have a working finger print reader.


LugRadio Live UK

Not strickly maemo related but I’m sure the two communitites overlap, LugRadio Live UK has been announce for 19th and 20th July 2008 at Wolverhampton University Student Union, Wulfruna St Wolverhampton, WV1 1LY.

From the reputation of past LugRadio’s I’m sure this will be a blast. Be there if you can, I will be! If you can be there too get in touch and we can arrange a maemo/linux/drinking fest.


Planet Maemo Love

A while ago I reported a shortfall of the site to bugzilla ( Clicking on the heart of a post to indicate that you like that particular one was a long winded process. A click first took you to a login page if you weren’t already logged in. Then you would be asked to confirm the ‘add to favorites’ and finally you were dumped back to the planet site at the very top of the page, regardless of where you previously were on it.

Now after some love the planet site does a much more UI friendly ‘ajaxy style’ inline add. I encourage everyone to test it out and give some love to the people who post useful information to the site, if for nothing else, to give them a small ego boost so they keep on posting :-).

Now if only they would fix my other long standing bug

edit: w00t looks like the karma bug is fixed aswell!


Dr. Ari Jaaki’s talk at OSiM

A couple of days ago Dr Ari Jaaki gave a talk on “What Mobile Users Need and How Open Source Can Help” at the Open Source in Mobile (OSiM) conference, San Francisco. In the talk Ari covers Nokia’s stance when it comes to open source and how they are ‘learning from their mistakes’. I was impressed by Ari’s honesty when he pointed out Nokia’s shortfalls in the open source community and the fact that they are trying to improve.

The talk can be heard on Its light on details but does skim over the higher level stuff quite well.

The reaction to this talk does highlight a few key points. Nokia started off on this 3 year journey (so far) with a different methodology to the one they have today. I think their past mistakes have forced them to re-evaluate their stance with the open source community but even now they are still doing things that really nark the community as a whole. Their continued stance on Ogg support on the web is worrying and even recently some code that were once open has being made closed source. Clearly Nokia still has some way to go.

Nokia is heading in the right direction, lets hope they continue.


Call of Duty 4

WOW, what a game. The production value is amazing with Call of Duty 4. The attention to detail and overall atmosphere of the game is second to none so whats the problem? Well, the problem is, its far too short!

After less than 7 hours play I had got to the end, absolutely amazed by the game but in contrast stunned by the abrupt end. Now I maybe unique here and ‘want my COD cake and eat it’ but the game was so good, so imersive, so .. you get the idea but it left me with a sour taste to see it end so soon. It does in fact bring up an interesting question, “How long do you expect a good game to entertain you?”. I for one would answer this ambiguous question with 20 to 30 hours but today’s games, especially FPS or First Person Shooters, struggle to hit the 10 hour mark. Whats your thoughts?