Podcast Season 2 Episode 12


Title: The shortest episode, ever.

In this episode: The first Mozilla 4 beta is here while Nokia is moving rapidly forward with MeeGo for mobiles. We report back on our You Dare Us challenge and hear Paul tackle Python.

What's in the show:

  • News:
      Firefox 4 beta 1 has been released, and is looking more like Chrome. According to Reuters, Nokia is switching to MeeGo for all its 'N' series devices. And porting Osmos to Linux, one of the games within the Humble Indie Bundle, was worth the effort.
  • You Dare Us:
      The results of our command-line challenge.
    • Graham:
      • Download the Astronomy Picture of the Day with: wget http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/apod/astropix.html;
        image=`gawk -F \" '/href="image/ { print $2; exit; }' astropix.html`;
        wget http://antwrp.gsfc.nasa.gov/$image
    • Paul:
      • Change your current status on Identi.ca with: curl -u username:password -d status="Hello World" -k https://identi.ca/api/statuses/update.xml
  • Discovery of the week:
    • Andrew:
      • With TinyURL.com you can append a custom suffix to your links.
      • Popular UK newspaper, the Daily Mail, says that users of the internet are getting older.
    • Paul:
    • Graham:
      • Delve into the world of 3D fractal geometry with Mandelbulber.
  • In the Hot Seat:
    • Hear Paul's careful and considered analysis on why Python is the most powerful programming language in the world.

  • Special offer: subscribe to Linux Format magazine and save up to 40%

Presenters: Andrew Gregory, Paul Hudson and Graham Morrison. Vocal samples taken from Mike Saunders.

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Music by Brad Sucks.

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Your comments


Hi, what's the usual time delay between posting your latest podcast here and the new episode appearing in iTunes?
I can't wait any longer, I need my fix!

Most sublime episode ever.

Why did Paul compare the

Why did Paul compare the features of programming languages (Python and PHP) and the features of a text editor/IDE (Vim)?

Of course Python and PHP can't tell you the list of methods available for an object. However, if you have an IDE with code hinting for the given language, it can do it for you. I have NetBeans and use this feature in PHP all the time.


Because I was tired and rambling after sending two magazines, a bag and a book to the printers? :)

On a different note, I've never found a Python IDE I liked. Please recommend me one! Doesn't have to be as powerful as Eclipse or as smart as MonoDevelop, just not shockingly ugly and with half-decent function and parameter completion/


I'm looking for a recommendation, not a list. I've tried four or five so far, and just don't understand why "ugly stick" appears to be the first priority for their developers.

Then there's Eric, which somehow manages to make Eclipse look like Gedit.

Special dare

Another great podcast guys - keep them coming.

If you fancy a special challenge for the next episode, how about going undercover and investigating what has happened to OpenSolaris, and when we might expect to see a 2010 release? It would be good to know if the project hasn't died, and even better if Tuxradar can grab an exclusive scoop on the latest project status.

In fact, with all those spies being swapped this week, perhaps you could emplouy one of them to go digging. Or is that the real reason why Mike wasn't available for this week's recording...?

do it....

Do it yourself's you crazy bastards(pod cast gurus, yes you are)(gaming distribution platform, STEAM like for linux and stop complaining like the rest of us....lolollololol......hehehehe). Make it your next challenge between the 4 of you and make it a collaboration project, just to make it look good :P

hot topic suggestion

Do the likes of Red Hat, Novell and Canonical contribute enough back to the community or should they do more given the substantial resources at their disposal?

you dare us

I dare you to use GNU/HURD exclusively for a fortnight and report back on how you got on.

I dare you lads...but not until you are all back...

I was a bit taken aback by a previous evaluation of lightweight distros. In particular, I was surprised and a bit aghast at your assessment of Puppy Linux.

I find Puppy Linux to be not only the best lightweight distro out there, but the #2 distro in terms of usability, being second only to Ubuntu. Your chief complaint seemed to be its lack of software, and though you gave a nod to the Puppy community having more available software, I doubt that you delved into that community to actually see the wealth of software available. Moreover, there is so much pre-installed in the default installation, that most users only need a few things to do everything that can be done with bigger distros, and then some.

Specifically, there are a few things that Puppy does better than anything, like having the ability to do a frugal install (install to a folder on any file system without affecting the other OS, or doing any partitioning whatsoever), its sheer speed (Abiword and Gnumeric each open in exactly 1 second on my NETBOOK), and the unique utilities that are inherent to Puppy (like PUDD for example, which byte-copies a partition or drive to another, and in my experience actually works better than anything I have used, and the fact that Puppy can actually run persistently from a recordable CD or DVD).

Puppy also has dozens of "puplets" or remasters, and it perhaps the easiest distro to remaster ever made. I have done 3 myself, specific to 3 different machines.

I dare you to not only use Puppy Linux for a fortnight, but to dive into the community forums and see for yourself how wonderful this distro and its users really are.


Osmos wasn't in the Humble Indie Bundle, the Linux version just came out at roughly the same time.

Great episode but...

Needs more pink ponies!

Challenge for the following obviously

I know you've chosen a challenge by the time I write/wrote this.
And I honestly don't mean anything negative by saying this,
BUT! yes the but is this: challenge - to refrain from being at all negative about anything, yes, anything during the podcast.
No mention of failure, no mention of negative reflections at all. No mention of anything that might even slightly be considered as negative. I doubt you can do it, but with your new short program format, it's a challenge I feel confident
you can actually live up to.

All you have to avoid is any negativity at all, so there you have it. Up to you now.


Bash ! Mark

Hey, I just found this site. This podcast was hilarious and informative!

Quick note on '!' in Bash...you can actually get away with '!' in bash by using single-quotes. I found this out while doing some greps in a forensic project.

thought I'd throw it out there, play around with it, you can probably find an even better solution for this issue.

Get Rid of the Mexican - Please!

Long time listener here. Love the show, or rather loved..

The Mexican addition to your show just doesn't gel with the rest of the podcast. He's mexican, we get that - there's no need to make each opportunity on the podcast to bring up the fact that he's part of a minority - we get it!

It's a shame to see such a great tech podcast be polluted by such crap. If Effe wants to contribute to the podcast - then contribute _relevant_ news, comments, feedback etc.


It's like having Steve Jobs show up at the linux convention. You hope he might add something useful, worthwhile but all he does is ramble about his own agenda. Heck - get Effe his own mexican podcast - dicsuss tacos, spanish and whatever drivel he wants - just not on the fabulous Tux podcast!



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