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Linux, Ubuntu & Android News


Think Moto E is cheap? Try this: First Firefox OS smartphone is up for grabs for a measly 38 USD in India!

Tech Drive-in 22 Aug 2014, 7:37 pm | Tech Drive-in


cheapest smartphone running firefox in india
When everyone was about to write-off smartphone market as a done deal, Moto G and Moto E were launched creating an entirely new segment catering to price and quality conscious customers. ASUS, Xiaomi and a host of other manufacturers soon entered the fray. But these ultra-cheap Firefox OS based smartphones are taking things to a whole new level. Spice has launched India's first Firefox based smartphone at an unbelievable 38 USD (approx).
Spice launches India's first Firefox OS smartphones at never-before-seen prices!
Spice has launched India’s first smartphone running FireFox OS at a staggeringly low price of Rs. 2,299 ($38 approx) which is much cheaper than the cheapest of Android smartphones available in the market. For example, Moto E is priced at almost twice this Firefox smartphone.
Called the Spice Fire One, the smartphone houses a 3.5-inch HVGA capacitive touch screen along with a 2 MP rear camera and 1.3 MP front camera. Powered by a 1 GHz processor, the smartphone comes with dual-SIM functionality and 2.5 G connectivity.
Message is pretty clear. Spice Fire One is clearly aimed for feature phone users wanting to switch to smartphones. “With the ultra-low cost Spice Fire One, we at Spice, aim to convert the feature phone users into smartphone users, thereby, aiding them with the power of Internet,” said Prashant Bindal, Chief Executive Officer, Spice Mobility Ltd.
[Read the full report at Indian Express]

In this video featuring Honda's ASIMO Robot, Ubuntu can be seen doing the dirty work behind the scenes

Tech Drive-in 22 Aug 2014, 5:54 pm | Tech Drive-in



Robotics is not new to Linux. But it is good to see one in live action. Here in this video featuring Honda's ASIMO Robot, Ubuntu can be spotted doing all the dirty work behind the scenes. 
Ubuntu spotted in the wild, again!
We've been reporting the wide-spread use of Ubuntu in a lot of varied sectors ranging from big enterprises such as Google to futuristic research and development of technologies such as Merc's driverless research car, even NASA was seen using Ubuntu in some of its research facilities. Recently, one of our readers spotted Ubuntu being used extensively in a video featuring world's most advanced humanoid robot, ASIMO by Honda.



Skip to 6:25 if you're impatient. If you notice, there are at least four instances where Ubuntu (think it is 10.04 LTS?) can be clearly spotted. 

Android exclusive Humble SEGA Mobile Bundle comes with 6 blockbuster SEGA titles!

Tech Drive-in 20 Aug 2014, 8:35 pm | Tech Drive-in

Android exclusive Humble SEGA Mobile Bundle
The latest pay-what-you-want Humble Indie Bundle, or rather Humble Mobile SEGA Bundle, is Android exclusive and comes with 6 blockbuster SEGA titles with more to be added soon. 
Humble Mobile SEGA Bundle for Android
Humble Bundle has done it again. Grab some of the best SEGA titles for Android at prices you would want to pay, literally. The Humble Bundle now has an excellent Android app to manage all the your games purchased through their website, and they even accept Bitcoin as a payment method! The three SEGA titles included in this bundle by default are:
  • Sonic the Hedgehog 4 Episode I
  • ChuChu Rocket!
  • Virtua Tennis Challenge (the game I'm most excited about)
And if you pay more than the average price, which was $3.69 at the time of writing this article, add three more games to your list:
  • Sonic & SEGA All-Star Racing
  • Sonic the Hedgehog 4 Episode II
  • Crazy Taxi
  • More to come...
Check out Humble Mobile SEGA Bundle for Android 

Watch Ranadheeran: India's first 3D animated video made almost entirely using open source software

Tech Drive-in 18 Aug 2014, 1:32 pm | Tech Drive-in



It is a pretty well know fact that open source 3D graphics tools like Blender is not just a hobbyist software anymore. The fifth official open movie from Blender Foundation "Gooseberry" is already under active development. In that respect, Ranadheeran is one of its kind. It's probably the first "open" movie to come out of India, created with the sole purpose of showcasing the capabilities of open source 3D graphics tools such as Blender, GIMP etc.

Watch Ranadheeran: India's first fully "open" animation movie



At a time when filmmakers and producers doling out huge money for animation work in movies, a group of techies from this small South-Indian city of Coimbatore have proved that quality is achievable using low-cost open source software and local talent.

A three-minute-and-52-second-long video trailer, titled 'Ranadheeran', made by Realworks Studios was released on YouTube few weeks ago and has been quite an internet sensation since. Only hand-made animation is used for the movie and no motion capture, the creators claim. The primary tools used were Bender, Audacity, and GIMP. Apart from that, the Realworks team have also developed their own Render farm scheduler software, which is not open source. [Watch it on YouTube, read more about it on The Hindu]

Finally! Get Netflix to work in Ubuntu 14.04 (and Linux) the super easy way!

Tech Drive-in 18 Aug 2014, 12:38 am | Tech Drive-in


how to get netflix to work in ubuntu 14.04
This is a dream come true. Though there are ways to make Netflix work in Ubuntu 14.04 (like using Pipelight for example), this must be the easiest. All you need is the latest Google Chrome from dev channel and an extension called User Agent Switcher. That's it! Let's get started.
[How to] Get Netflix to work in Ubuntu 14.04 using Google Chrome!
Thanks to Nathan VanCamp and his "prying" eyes, it is now possible to watch Netflix movies in Linux using Google Chrome and a simple User Agent Switcher extension. Here's how it works.
  • Download following dependencies first (not needed if you're on Ubuntu 14.10 Alpha and other Linux distros like Fedora 20 or Manjaro Linux, just skip to Step 6 instead).
  • EDIT: Add Ubuntu GNOME 14.04 to the list of supported distros!!
  • Doing this will also result in "broken-packages" error (nothing serious as far as I'm concerned). If you don't want that error appearing, skip the installation completely. 
  • EDIT: The packages to download are (choose btw 32 and 64 bit versions):
  1. libnss3 (64 bit) OR libnss3 (32 bit)
  2. libnss3-1d (64 bit) OR libnss3-1d (32 bit)
  3. libnss3-nssdb  (this fixes the broken packages error, thanks to Rob's comment below)
    • Install the packages using the following commands* (a simple double click on the just downloaded DEB packages will also do the same, but I prefer command line). 
    sudo dpkg -i ~/Downloads/libnss3_3.16.3-1ubuntu1_amd64.deb
    sudo dpkg -i ~/Downloads/libnss3-1d_3.16.3-1ubuntu1_amd64.deb
    sudo dpkg -i ~/Downloads/libnss3-nssdb_3.16.3-1ubuntu1_all.deb
    • *Change the paths depending on your download destination. Done.
    Download and install Google Chrome from developer channelnetflix in ubuntu 14.04
    • Right Click on the extension - go to "Options" page. Fill in the following details. 
    New User-agent name: Netflix
    New User-Agent String: (Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 6.3; Win 64; x64) AppleWebKit/537.36 (KHTML, like Gecko) Chrome/38.0.2114.2 Safari/537.36)
    Replace or Append: Append

    Indicator Flag: NFX

    Note:  "New User-Agent String" is the most important part here. Rest of the text can be anything. Use them for your own ease of use. Resulting screen will look like this.

    how to get netflix to work in ubuntu 14.04
    • Done. Now switch to this new user-agent in your Chrome browser: Click on the User Agent Switcher extension icon on top and goto Chrome - Netflix. (see image below)
    netlfix linux
    • Done. Now login to Netflix and you'll see the change. I have been watching movies non-stop since. Here's another screenshot. 
    netflix on ubuntu
    Note: I have used Nathan VanCamp's instructions with some modifications to make Netflix work in Ubuntu 14.04 LTS. For example, he was using Chrome v37 from beta channel while I was using Chrome v38 from dev channel. See Nathan's instructions and comments for further clarifications. I give no guarantee that this will work for everyone (though I hope it does!).

    Borderlands: The Pre Sequel is coming to Linux!

    Tech Drive-in 9 Aug 2014, 4:25 am | Tech Drive-in


    Borderlands The Pre Sequel coming to Linux
    The small trickle that started with the introduction Steam for Linux is a full on waterfall now. So many big game titles have already reached our shores, and more are on their way. After many high profile releases such as Civilization V and XCOM: Enemy Unknown for Linux, 2K Games is at it again. The Borderlands franchise is zeroing in on Linux!

    Borderlands: The Pre Sequel is coming to Linux
    Borderlands: The Pre-sequel will be the first Borderlands IP to release on Linux, according to 2K. There were rumors circling around already about the imminent announcement of next Borderlands for Linux which was later confirmed by 2K Games themselves to IGN.

    Set between Borderlands 1 and 2, the 'Pre-Sequel' starts when Handsome Jack crashing the Hyperion space station into the moon. Players work for Handsome Jack, getting the chance to watch his fall from grace. It will be released out October 14 in the US.

    While Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel is headed to Linux, it seems unlikely we will see Linux ports for Borderlands 1 and 2, according to IGN. [Watch the game's review at IGN]

    Turin becomes the first Italian city to adopt Ubuntu and Open Office, saves millions of Euros!

    Tech Drive-in 7 Aug 2014, 1:32 pm | Tech Drive-in

    turin adopts ubuntu over windows
    Turin, Italy joins the French city of Toulouse and German city of Munich in the mass adoption of open source and Linux as the official alternatives saving millions of Euros in licensing cost and other charges. News like these are becoming more commonplace these days. Major cities in the world are choosing Linux primarily because of cost-benefits, and Microsoft is finding it harder and harder to explain the huge costs involved with its products.

    Turin adopts Ubuntu and Open Office, saves 6 million Euros
    Economic hardships are bringing the best out of administrators and strategists alike, as the City of Turin recently found out. The city administrators calculated that, updating the licences for all the PCs running Windows products will cost them a whopping 22 million Euros over a period of 5 years! At the same time, adopting Linux and open source alternatives will actually save them 6 million Euros during the same period.

    Turin's administrators has decided to go with open alternatives and specifically chosen Ubuntu Linux distribution, Apache OpenOffice office suite and programs such as Mozilla Firefox and Thunderbird. City's 8,300 odd municipal offices will start seeing the changes soon.

    [Via: Marco's Box (translated), image source here]

    Ubuntu caught in the wild, this time in a NASA video!

    Tech Drive-in 7 Aug 2014, 1:09 am | Tech Drive-in

    Ubuntu in NASA video
    Ubuntu is popping up everywhere. Google's Project Tango video and driverless car project were recent examples. Then there was this news about French Armed Forces' adoption of Ubuntu en masse. Everything points to a brighter future for Ubuntu OS. It almost seems like Ubuntu and Linux are slowly becoming the de facto choice for enterprise users.

    Ubuntu spotted in a NASA video!



    It's just a 2 mintues long video. But if you're impatient, skip to 1:25. Thanks to our reader Evan for tipping us. If you have an interesting bit of information to share with us, feel free to use our contact page. Thanks for reading, see more Linux news here

    Intel Linux Graphics Installer updated, added support for Ubuntu 14.04 LTS, better Baytrail performance

    Tech Drive-in 6 Aug 2014, 6:50 am | Tech Drive-in

    Intel Linux Graphics Installer for Ubuntu 14.04 LTS
    Although Intel graphics have always been the least troublesome for Linux users, things are a lot better now when it comes to the driver support for high-end graphics cards from Nvidia and others. But Intel's native graphics installer for Linux is truly one of a kind.
    Intel Graphics Installer for Linux now support Ubuntu 14.04
    A brand new version of Intel Graphics Installer with added support for Ubuntu 14.04 LTS has now been released. Highlights of the new 1.0.6 version include broadwell support, baytrail improvements and many improvements and optimizations on power saving features.

    "The Intel Graphics Installer for Linux allows you to easily install the latest graphics and video drivers for your Intel graphics hardware. This allows you to stay current with the latest enhancements, optimizations, and fixes to the Intel Graphics Stack to ensure the best user experience with your Intel graphics hardware. The Intel Graphics Installer for Linux is available for the latest versions of Ubuntu and Fedora."

    In version 1.0.6, Ubuntu 14.04 LTS and Fedora 20 are the officially supported Linux distros. DEB and RPM packages are available in 32-bit and 64-bit formats. Download here

    Rainbowstream: Fun to use Terminal based Twitter Client for Ubuntu & Linux

    Tech Drive-in 4 Aug 2014, 12:16 am | Tech Drive-in


    rainbowstream twitter client ubuntu
    Rainbowstream is a fun little terminal based Twitter client for Ubuntu. It is similar to Twidge in so many ways and has every capability you expect from a basic Twitter client. 
    Rainbowstream: A Twitter client can't get simpler than this
    Compose, favorite, search, retweet or simply browse your stream, Rainbowstream has got you covered, and lets you do all that from a simple command line interface!

    Setting up is easy. Ubuntu and Linux Mint users, do the following:
    • Install the dependencies first. Copy-paste the following command in Terminal. 
    sudo apt-get install python-dev libsqlite3-dev
    • Done. Now do this, again in Terminal.
    sudo pip install rainbowstream
    • Rainbowstream is installed all right. Done.
    Configuring RainbowstreamNow you need to configure your Twitter account to be used with Rainbowstream. There aint much to "configure", but here is it anyway. 
    • Run Rainbowstream from Terminal. Just type this and ENTER. 
    rainbowstream
    • Twitter will then ask whether you want to give permission to the app for accessing your account. Granting access will give you the code. Enter that in the Terminal. Done. 
    • Hit 'h' and ENTER, you'll get detailed help texts. Eg: Typing "t linux" (without quotes) tweets "linux" to your followers.
    Note: Before writing this article, I revoked the app's access to my Twitter account in order to get take some nice screenshots. Well, that was a bad idea. Now whenever I try to run rainbowstream from Terminal I'm getting the following error: "We have maximum connection problem with twitter'stream API right now". Problem with Twitter's API I guess. I'll have to try it again after sometime. See also: cool-old-term, a retro styled Terminal which I was using in the first screenshot. [Thanks to @dtvd88 for the app and also for letting us know about it]

    Tech Drive-in

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