Ubuntu Intrepid Ibex 8.10 Beta Released!

3 10 2008

The beta of the latest Ubuntu distribution is hot off the presses! There are a number of improvements over the older version (8.04), which I pointed out in my previous post about the alpha. To summarize:

  • create a private, encrypted directory within each user’s home directory
  • screen notifications for changing resolutions for multiple monitors
  • limited-permission guest account
  • a new theme
  • the log out panel applet has been completely replaced
  • new wallpaper
  • new pam-auth-update tool
  • BBC plug-in for Totem
  • Samba 3.2
  • a “Last Successful Boot” recovery option

You can download the beta from Ubuntu’s web site or if you aren’t ready to take the plunge, the release candidate will be released October 23 with the final release being unveiled just after that on October 30.

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Scour Combines Top Three Search Engines, Pays You

10 08 2008

A recently introduced search engine by the name of Scour has surfaced and I, personally, am a fan. The first thing you may notice when you enter a search are the small icons next to each result with the Google, Yahoo! and MSN logos and a number next to each. This indicates the “rank” on each search engine. So for example, below, you can see that there is a 1 next to the Google logo. The “1” indicates that if you were to search the same phrase in Google, it would turn that link up as the first result. This is a great feature that helps to weed out the poor links and give you the best results from all of the main search engines. You also have the option to show the results as they would appear in each search engine separately, leaving almost no excuse not to use this as an alternative to your current engine.

Another feature used to help weed out the poor results is a voting system. Next to each result and the footer of each clicked result you have the option to give the page a thumbs up or a thumbs down. It is also optional to leave a comment as to why it was a good/bad site. After enough votes, the listings will move down in rank, placing the relevant ones where they should be, according to the users. When using Scour, you can read comments left by other users about websites based on your keyword. This takes a lot of the guesswork out of looking for the right link.

The way that Scour encourages you to vote and comment is by using a points system. If you sign up with Scour (it’s free and optional) you will receive one point for each search, two points for a vote and three points for leaving a comment. They also allow referral points where you receive 25% of the points they make. Once you achieve 6,500 points, Scour will send you a $25 Visa gift card.

They also have browser search plugins for Firefox and IE with Opera arriving soon; start page search widgets for Netvibes, Pageflakes and iGoogle (all arriving soon); and Desktop search widgets for Windows, OS X and Yahoo! Widgets (all arriving soon).

I honestly can find no good reason as to why not to use this browser as an alternative. If I don’t like the “Scour” results, I can change it to Google, Yahoo! or MSN-only results while being paid. I honestly can’t think of a better way of attracting users to a search engine than this.

The link for Scour is here.





Ubuntu 8.04 Finally Released!

24 04 2008

Finally, Ubuntu 8.04 has come out of Beta and onto people’s computers everywhere. From what I have been hearing, the site’s being bombarded with downloads right now, so you might want to wait until the weekend to download it. You can check out my initial coverage of 8.04 here. Or if you really want to, you can download it now from the Ubuntu website.








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