I have been experimenting with linux for over a year now and not always with much luck. Though things seem to be getting better with the quality of the distributions and my elite skills. What people demand out of a operating system is becoming greater and greater, i couldn't have done the things that i now do in linux a year ago as the software clearly wasn't developed enough and in many cases still need developing. In some cases after installing linux today i found i could do more things easier then i would do in windows. For instance i have a couple of DivXs which refused to play in windows which after installing xine played perfectly (i finally got to watch the first episode of series 2 of enterprise) also things like gaim tabbing msn windows stops things from getting too cluttered.

Though as per usual there is a down side which every time i use linux gets smaller. I miss the integration between outlook and msn, and though gaim is a great program it misses little things like showing when people are signing in and flashing on the start bar. Also i miss how xchat doesn't flash or beep when i get messages meaning i have to check back more regularly. Another problem i have found is with icons not displaying properly when i install something, i quite often have to assign a different icon to a program when adding it to the desktop.

Though things are heading in the right direction, I downloaded netscape 7 earlier which is probably the best webbrowser after mozilla. Xine is also another great program that can play all DivXs, MP3s and DVDs - how handy, tho the program needs a few more improvements before its perfect.

Overall I'm going to stick with linux for a while because I think its a great alternative to windows which In some ways is better and in others could do with some improvements.

Greece Bans computer games

By Pete | @kingpetey | 13 Sep 2002

Earlier this month the country of Greece made a law banning all computer games. This includes all computer and console games and those played on such devices as game boys. People have already been fined large amounts of money for being caught playing or owning games. The law applies equally to visitors from abroad: "If you know these things are banned, you should not bring them in," said a commercial liaison at the Greek Embassy in London.

The Greek government introduced the law to help prevent gambling. The Greek police will be responsible for catching anyone playing a game; these people could be fined up to ?60,000 and imprisoned for up to 12 months. The Greek gaming community is still stocked by the decision and may people are angry with the government for enforcing this silly law.

A court case this week came out with a verdict that the law unconstitutional. This will certainly mean the Greek authorities will have a hard time enforcing the law. Many of the gaming community are protesting against this decision and this first court case could set an example for many more to come. A lot of people have come to realize the government was too quick in bringing in this law and had not fully looked at all the consequences to pc and console gamers.

Today it was found out that Shrewsbury 6th form college has blocked the popular chill-out and news portal ImAFish.com. ImAFish and SSFC have worked closely in the previous term to keep people up to date with important events such as the election but today it was found out that the college computer admin have had enough of ImaFish?s popularity so have blocked the site. Though efforts are being made to give access back to the college the site owners are furious that a proportion of its traffic is being diverted to its proxy server error page.

One pupil told us earlier that his studies may be effected because of this decision ?I tried to get onto ImAFish earlier to use the sites powerful search capabilities which searches multiple search engines, I found to my disappointment that the site had been blocked.?

The creators of the site feel it?s a great shame that this has happened the second day back to college and it was hoping to secure a lot more traffic from the first year students which have just joined the college. What ever happens the site will have to put up a valid argument as to why it should have its site unblocked, one suggestion was to put more academic content on to the site though the creators say already the site is used for academic purposes. These being its search capabilities and the large amount of knowledge held in its articles. ImAFish 5 that was recently launched to try to clean up the image of the site clearly has not worked.

Though its unclear if the SSFC computer admin were just worried about the site being used for non academic purposes or that they were feeling trigger happy is unknown yet. The creators will try their hardest to get the site back to the viewers of the college they will back up all their data first just incase the admin are familiar with BOFHS (http://imafish.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=182).

Tonight the popular show that put 8 celebrities in the Australian out back came to a conclusion with Tony Blackburn as the winner with 55% of the votes. Over 1.5million people voted in the final that was between Tony and Tara and to a lot of peoples surprise Tony just won, this largely because of Tony?s large radio listens fan base.

The show that has been running for 2 weeks now witted 8 celebrities against each other from all different professions including Christina Hamilton, Darren Day and Uri Geller in the Australian outback to survive without the luxuries of life. Then each day for the last week the public has voted out the celebrity they least liked the first being Uri Geller who promised not to use his psychic powers to help win the game show. I?m a Celebrity screened by ITV and presented by Ant and Dec has been very popular with viewers but not everyone has thought it being good television.

A debate on channel 5's 'the wright stuff' brought up the argument that the program is not good tv and doesn't really show any educational values, but it was argued back that the public are very interested in real life tv shows such as I?m a Celebrity and big brother. The show is yet another idea to try to get as many viewers as possible to make more money for advertising, another series is planned for the same time next year it is rumored. Another show following the same steps as last year is popstars the rivals, where 2 bands (1 male and 1 female) will battle it out for the Christmas number one but more of that to come in a future article.

China blocks Google

By Pete | @kingpetey | 02 Sep 2002

The Chinese government have blocked the popular search engine Google it appears in their continued struggle to keep control over what their people view on the net. Google is one of the most popular search engines in the world and was very popular with the Chinese because of its ease of use and its ability to run searches in the Chinese language.

China keeps extreme control over what its people can view online and the government employs over 30,000 people to keep an eye on what people view online, chat rooms and their private emails. China has also blocked certain news sites but has never blocked a major search engine before. The country has also recently shut down over 150,000 unlicensed internet cafes in the last few months, and the ones which still exist have to abide by strict rules and install special software blocking certain sites.

Internet use in China is as popular as ever with over 45.8 million people online in the country, the government is worried that these people will get to know anti communism news thus causing trouble for the government in this politically sensitive time.

Though Google was blocked the web portal Yahoo was still accessible which uses Google for its searches which shows the Chinese government still need to do their homework. Luckily the popular news and comedy site ImAFish.com is still unaffected and will not stop bringing controversial content to its site to please the Chinese government.