The best computer program

It’s the greatest program.

Ever.

It’s free, and it’s available for Windows and Mac. Oh. And Linux. Oh. And Unix. Oh. And BSD which you may not have ever heard of, but there you have it. TrueOS, Linux, Windows 10, Mac computers whatever they call their OS. You can find it. It’s free. You can download it. It’s free. It doesn’t cost you anything, nobody’s making money because. It’s free.

Microsoft and Adobe don’t want you to know about the program that makes Photoshop obsolete.

The program is called “GIMP”

Notice I didn’t put a period there. Not sure if I should or not. Notice, finally, “GIMP” is all in capital letters. That was on purpose.

GIMP, or the GNU Image Manipulation Program, is the greatest computer program unless you’re into sound and video editing, in which case there are other great programs.

I will not bother to tell you what GNU means because that will make you not want to know and it’s recursive and really cancels itself out with it’s own name. Okay. I give in. It’s pronounced “Gah nu is not Unix.”

There. Got it out of my system.

It’s originally a “not Unix.” So here we have “GIMP” which translates as “Gah nu is not Unix Image Manipulation Program.”

Just call it GIMP and get over it. It’s a great program. You can go to Barnes and Noble and buy a huge fat book how to use this computer program. I did that until I figured out an essential truth. GIMP is NOT PHOTOSHOP. It can do everything you can do in Photoshop, but it’s not Photoshop so you have to do it in a different way. A completely different way. GIMP really means Gnu Image Manipulation (is not) Photoshop.

Linux vs Microsoft: How Far Would I go?

Despite the existence of hundreds of Linux “distros” it basically amounts to two classes, and none play NBC.com.

My never-ending battle to stay as far away from Microsoft Windows as possible lost ground today.

I hate Windows. Have I ever told you this? It’s why I use Linux.

The other day I tried TrueOS and didn’t like it. I was trying to get as far away from Microsoft Windows as humanly possible. TrueOS is the new name for OpenBSD. The BSD (Berkeley Software Distribution) is the open source version of Unix. When BSD stalled due to court cases, Linus Travalds came out with Linux, another Unix-like operating system, and the rest is history.

But BSD survived. Nowadays we have various versions like OpenBSD (now TrueBSD) and FreeBSD. The problem I found with TrueOS is it seems to be a developers platform, not a robust desktop end-loser platform for people like me.

So I went back to Linux, but what flavor of Linux?

For years I’ve been using Linux Mint, lately with the xcfe Desktop Environment on top.

When recently I revived my computer, I decided to explore around. I installed TrueOS, Linux Mint Mate, Linux Mint xfce, Ubuntu, Xubuntu, Kubuntu, Arch Linux, Manjaro xfce, Fedora xfce, Fedora Workstation, Debian, and Bodhi Linux. My computer design makes this painless to accomplish.

Here’s what I found. Despite the existence of hundreds of Linux “distros” it basically amounts to two classes. The RPM models and the DEB models. RPM models consist mainly of Red Hat Linux, Fedora, Arch and openSUSE (all of which I have used). The DEB models are based on Debian and consist of many distros like Ubuntu, Linux Mint and Bodhi Linux.

Hands down, Linux Mint seems to be the most robust for out-of-the-box usage, but as with any Linux distro, you can work with whatever flavor of Linux you have and install almost anything to make it work and feel like whatever you desire.

Since I was trying to move away from Linux Mint (out of boredom), I tried many of the aforementioned distros, the last being Fedora Workstation which I installed this morning and uninstalled this afternoon.

Fedora Workstation comes with Gnome 3 Desktop Environment pre-installed, but it was easy to install xfce and make it like Fedora xfce!

Fedora Workstation is a great Linux distro, but alas. It sorely lacks codecs, the pieces of code that enable you to watch DVD’s, Twitter clips and YouTube. I managed to install the necessary codecs after hours of research, but when I tried to play Farmville2 on Facebook, found it wouldn’t and couldn’t load. (I don’t play that game, but my wife loves it so I tried it for testing purposes.) No matter what I did, spending hours, I couldn’t resolve this issue.

So I thought, “I bet if I went back to Linux Mint it would work.” Then I thought of a distro I hadn’t tried, Ubuntu Studio.

I am now running Ubuntu Studio and here’s what I found. It has all the codecs installed, it plays DVDs and YouTube and Farmville2 on Facebook. It plays music, you can make and edit movies, all kinds of goodies.

However, knowing me, I had to stretch the limit. I went to NBC.com to see if I could watch past episodes of recent TV shows.

Yes, and no. The video shows up, but so jerky and disjointed it was unwatchable.

Then I thought, “I bet if I was on Microsoft Windows it would play,” and you know what? I know it would.

Which brings me to the ultimate question. How far am I willing to go with this? Would I ever switch back to Microsoft Windows?

The answer, of course, is no, I wouldn’t, but I’m disappointed my Linux codecs won’t play that content.C7ErZCdWkAAp9yv

Unkaputing my Kaput Computer

Suffice it to say you don’t need anything Microsoft to have a perfectly wonderful PC.

My poor computer, running the Linuxmint operating system, cool though it is with it’s huge RAM and 2.5 terabytes of storage, needs servicing.

Oh don’t have me rant about how I seriously dislike having to spend actual money to have virus protection on a Windows machine, or actual money for the operating system itself. Or that Windows is not the operating system on those devices anyway. It’s still MSDOS with an interface layer so you don’t have to use the command prompt directly like it was before Windows came along. But I digress. I’ve been ranting. Suffice it to say you don’t need anything Microsoft to have a perfectly wonderful PC.

My computer was built by us assembling the parts, such as the tower, the motherboard, disk drives, fans, etc. It was a blank machine with no OS, and I installed the easiest and best operating system on it, Linuxmint, built on top of Ubuntu. Still works, but the DVD writer is kaput. And it’s dirty inside.

Time to get it serviced. I’ll pay someone. Too much for me to bother with personally anymore.