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

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


New Releases to Start the New Week

Two of my favorite, and most frequently used, programs made new builds available at the end of last week. SightSpeed build 6539 is now available for download from their web page, and Opera 3.

July 7, 2008 by J.A. Watson


Quad Boot - Friday Update - It's Good!

After nearly a full week of working with this quad-boot setup in various stages of completion, I can say that I am very pleased. It is working well and it is allowing me to easily compare the three different versions of Linux, which is just what I wanted.

July 4, 2008 by J.A. Watson


Skype Hires New COO - from Motorola

Skype announced today that they have created a new position, Chief Operating Officer, and hired someone from Motorola for that position. Considering the performance of Motorola in the cell phone market recently, it seems to me like it should be a good fit.

July 1, 2008 by J.A. Watson


Mandriva Linux - Wonderful and Maddening

Well, since I've gone through both Ubuntu and openSuSE Linux, and my curiosity about Unix systems in general has really started to kick in, I've decided to go through a few more variants to see what they are like, how they load on my laptops, and whether I might prefer one of them over my current favorite (Ubuntu). I might end up regretting this decision, but I assume there will be plenty of adventure and frustration along the way, and perhaps some learning and enlightenment.

July 1, 2008 by J.A. Watson