Saturday, May 03, 2008

Happiness is DIY computing

Finally exams are over...what an ordeal. I'll have to do over Combinatorics in the summer or next year. It's a really interesting course but I didn't put nearly enough work into in this semester to pass.

So, de-stressing now, I got to tinkering with X-MAME. I finally got it up to it's proper performance by using the OpenGL mode of the xmame-x11 build, instead of the xmame-SDL I was using. I was getting horrible framerates even though the box I'm running on is powerful enough (1 GHz + nvidia GeForce 440MX) to run most everything full throttle.

This experience is one of many that reinforces for me the difference between open-source computing vs. Windows or Apple. It's pure DIY fun. Setting up the Linux box will eventually become my multimedia/retro-gaming machine took a lot of head-scratching and researching on the web and experimenting, but I have got it tweaked perfectly to the point where it's a lot better that it would be under Windows. Every time I look for an open-source alternative to a piece of Windows software, like a video player - I've rediscovered the same principle - it takes more time to tweak and setup properly FOSS software, but in the end it will have way more technical capability than the Windows variants.

So if you just love fiddling and digging into computers, FOSS is the only way to go.

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