J.A. Watson

I started working with what we called "analog computers" in aircraft maintenance with the United States Air Force in 1970. After finishing military service and returning to university, I was introduced to microprocessors and machine language programming on Intel 4040 processors. After that I also worked on, operated and programmed Digital Equipment Corporation PDP-8, PDP-11 (/45 and /70) and VAX minicomputers. I was involved with the first wave of Unix-based microcomputers, in the early '80s. I have been working in software development, operation, installation and support since then.

Latest Posts

Admission and Lesson - Don't Overcomplicate Linux!

This is the kind of thing I don't particularly enjoy writing, but as I have been blogging about learning Linux, and I've tried to approach as an "ordinary PC user" would, I think it's important to pass along lessons learned from mistakes. Of course, my approach to Linux is tainted by my very long history with Unix, and perhaps that's what happened in this case...

July 17, 2008 by J.A. Watson


TokBox Releases Desktop Client

TokBox, which I wrote about recently, has released a desktop client based on Adobe Air. This is an interesting development for several reasons.

July 15, 2008 by J.A. Watson


Skype 4.0 Beta Updated

Skype has released an updated 4.0 Beta. After having said so many times "we are listening", and "keep the comments coming", what did they change in the overwhelmingly despised new user interface?

July 13, 2008 by J.A. Watson

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More Success with Mandriva

I spent some time last night getting (or trying to get) the various Linux versions on my main laptop set up for use at my home. I had mixed success, but in the end Mandriva came out clearly on top.

July 11, 2008 by J.A. Watson


Fedora, Slackware, Debian... and Philosophy

I have been quiet about Linux this week because I have been busy trying several new versions. In the process, I have learned quite a bit more, and started to think about the philosophy behind Linux, operating system choices, and Free / Open Source software in general.

July 10, 2008 by J.A. Watson


Hand Wringing Over the Dell/SightSpeed Video Chat Deal

There's certainly no shortage of hand-wringing going on by the Skype Cheerleaders over at the supposedly "Independent" Skype Journal over the recent Dell Video Chat powered by SightSpeed deal. In two successive articles by different authors, they suggest just about every possible excuse except two:1.

July 8, 2008 by J.A. Watson