Deep From Within The Blogoshere

We bring you a recent run-in between a Big Bear and a Texas Penguin.

After I tied up "Dusty", my trusty mustang at the rail I squinted one last time into the evening sun while I shook the dust off. I walked in to the saloon, looking for something to clear the dust from my throat.

I moseyed up to the bar and ordered a grasshopper sarsaparilla. Same color of Windex and leaves your guts streak free. As I pulled out the cash for the barkeep, someone leaned over from beside me and said, "I got this one."

Imagine my surprise when I looked up and saw the one and only Texstar, the fastest dev in the West, buying me a soda.

I couldn't stay long, and neither could he. In the short time while we cooled our heels though, I remembered what we said, and I wrote it all down for you folks.

Q: You have at times been known to pop in to IRC channels, the forums and even responded to emails. Do you have a favorite method of communicating with people? Are you a user of Instant Messaging perhaps? Twitter?

I communicate on IRC, forums, email and mailing lists.

(He didn't comment on the Twitter issue and I didn't push him on it what with that impressive looking wireless mouse hanging from his belt.)

Q: You created a distro that is based on KDE, obviously, one might take from that you are a KDE fan. Do you like to use any of the other DEs or WMs on a regular basis at all or do you petty much stick with KDE most or all the time?

I use KDE most of the time on my desktop. I use LXDE on my ancient laptop. I do like the Gnome version that Ken and Don did for PCLinuxOS Gnome 2009.1.

Q: Going back to KDE, you have commented in other places that if the day comes that KDE 4.x shows itself to be 'stable' to you, it will make it into PCLOS. Do you see the progress of KDE moving at a good pace or do you see them still floundering in too many key areas to see daylight anytime soon?

KDE 4.2.2 is pretty stable. KDE 4 for PCLinuxOS is being worked on and the KDE4 folder is getting populated. I ran into a problem building it with our old compiler. I hope we can get over that hurdle and finish out the packages soon.

(Of course he's been working on KDE 4.2. Did you really think the KDE Kid would leave it behind for long?)

Q: What did you think of Tuz, the stand in (temporary as it may be) for Tux? Will it really make a discernible impact to the awareness they say they used it for?

I don't know. I'm 100% all penguin myself.

(This is true. As a matter of fact, he was in town on a penguin drive at the time, another reason he couldn't stay long. Them penguins are something else to keep in one place for very long.)

Q: The Linux community is often seen as 'galvanized' into the "Stallman/purist" camp and the "Linus/go with what's working" camp. As you include some 'non-free' apps in the PCLinuxOS release, does that put you more to the Linus camp or do you really pay attention to either of them?

I just pay attention to the PCLinuxOS users and try to make available what they want within reason.

(You mean to tell me there actually are Linux devs who pay attention to the users and not popularity polls?)

Q: You include apt4rpm and synaptic on an rpm-based distro. While I personally find it a terrific notion, do you find that it complicates development issues or does it have any impact at all?

It doesn't complicate development issues at this time. There will come a time when we will have to look at something else as Synaptic is no longer being developed for RPMs.

(No more apt4rpm? That just isn't right. Apt4 dev team, get your butts back on task or we'll stake you down in front of a penguin stampede.)

Q: If people have paid any attention to your posts in the PCLinuxOS forum, they will notice you like to dabble in experimenting with other distros as much as any Linux Hacker, Outside of PCLinuxOS, is there any distro that's really catching your eye lately?

I found Klikit Linux fun to play with.

Q: Is it true you hate bears? Was it something Yogi did when you were a young'un? Perhaps Smokey frightened you in one of his more 'serious' commercials?

I love bears.

(When he said this, he got this look about him that suggested he was thinking "honey-glazed or barbecued. I changed the topic quickly.)

Q: With the new slew of file systems coming out, do you foresee PCLinuxOS experimenting with ext4 or any other as a default for future releases?

Ext4 is supposed to go stable in an upcoming kernel release. I suspect we will move to it when we do our rebase towards the summer/fall of the year.

Q: If Mandriva were to bellyflop tonight, where would you first look to rebase PCLinuxOS on, or would you give a whack at rebuilding and updating the base you are on now?

We will rebase on our existing platform. We need to get updated gcc/glibc and then start updating and rebuilding all of our packages.

With that, he clapped me on the back and swigged down the last of his own Grasshopper Sarsaparilla.

"Them penguins won't wait all day." he said with a grin and walked out through the swinging doors and onto the next town.

One thing about traveling in Linux Land, you just never know who you'll end up standing next to in any given saloon or massage parlor you happen to step into.