Spotify on Linux
After several years of only having Windows and Mac clients, we at Spotify are really excited to release a qt-based Linux desktop client. The port was quite smooth after all the work we’ve done for other platforms that we’ve developed (iPhone, Android, several set-top boxes with Linux, Symbian, etc).
Being the Debian shop we are, we packaged it right away and are now happy to provide the client as a deb. It is regularly auto-built and tested by all our developers working on debian (and even ubuntu) whenever they want to listen to one or more of our 8*10^6 tracks. (One lonely fedora college prepared a rpm, too! Its not up yet, though.)
Add this to your sources.list files and aptitude install spotify-client-qt to check it out:
deb http://repository.spotify.com stable non-free
There is some additional infrastructure in the package spotify-client-gnome-support (same repository) so that you can click on links to open tracks, interact with Facebook and other, useful websites etc.
As we haven’t found a reliable way to display ads yet, this version is only available to Spotify Premium subscribers.
Additional information about the archive key etc can be found here: http://www.spotify.com/se/download/previews/
Dear Lazyweb: Datacenter in the US?
I look for a data center in the US for some servers with ~40kW cooling power. I plan to use those nice energy efficient double sided racks from SGI (formerly Rackable), so the place should allow that i bring my own racks. I don't need super-low latency to Europe, but rather to the USA and Canada. And it needs to be highly reliable, preferably tier 3 or better!
However, what is most important to me (living in Europe) is that the remote hands actually have a clue. At one place in London i got really lucky: They are able to patch up new servers, can install spare parts and mail broken stuff back to IBM, know about tcp/ip, link lights, switches and routers, debug bad hardware (where LOM is not good enough) and are generally really friendly and quick. As icing on the cake they can even spell debian! Good pricing would be nice, too, but less important then the clueful people.
Should you know such a place, please mail me!
apt https transport for etch?
Over the weekend Michael Vogt (mvo) and I produced a backport of the apt https transport to etch. In lenny and sid that functionality is in a seperate package (apt-transport-https), but for etch it seemed easier to just put it into the existing apt package and rebuild that. The advantage of not backporting all of testing's apt is of course the horrible intrusiveness with all its reverse dependencies because of the apt abi changes.
Since this cant go into backports.org because it is not a straight backport from testing to etch i wonder if it is worthwhile to make it publicly accessable in an alternative way.
A https transport is usefull in settings where sensitive packages (e.g. from a private repository) need to be accessed from accross unsecure networks.
Please tell me if you want to use this so I (and mvo for ubuntu perhaps?) can put the package up somewhere. Is there a standard place for non-standard backports yet?
Regarding Lucas' points that he makes about helping debian, I think there is an important factor for people that was only mentioned between the lines: "Instant Gratification". It is much more gratifying for a contributor if his effords have immediate effects. (I guess that is one reason for the success of Wikis.) Things that slow down the effect usually dimish this gratification.
So what can people who want to help Debian do to achive more imminent gratification? Pick projects that let you help directly with direct svn/git/whatnot access (Security team, Debian Edu, Debian-Installer...).
On the other hand we should try to come up with ways to cut down on delays as much as possible and make it easier to rollback and repair if an error occures. (That is almost allways a good thing anyways.)
Dear Lazyweb: How to make less coding errors
I just read Daniel J. Bernstein's paper
on how to write secure software. It basically boils down to "Don't make programming errors!". This reminded me of an article which I read roughly a decade ago in c't magazine
about a technique to reduce the numbers of errors when coding. If i recall correctly it worked like this: Write code, then debug it and pay attention what kind of errors you made and in what part of the process you made them. Then figure out ways to avoid those errors in similar situations in the future.
Despite spending some quality time with google I could not find a trace of this technique, let alone a name. Can someone please help me?
Random Acts of Kindness
Some time ago a friend of my sister in law contacted me and offered his services as a courier for gifts. I had told him that I knew someone in Israel and he was traveling to Sweden. So I contacted Lior with the strange proposal to give me a gift (and I promised to return the favour). A few days later I got a book about Israel from Lior, was very happy and started to ponder what kind of present could be fun and entertaining for him. I ended up going to the supermarket and bought all kinds of special swedish food (and obviously skipped some
). I wrote some short notes with cooking instructions and explanations and sent the whole lot back to Israel.
I enjoyed both getting the present, reading the book and picking a present for someone I regard highly. I would like to recomment this as a fun game within Debian: If you know someone traveling abroad find out if there is a DD (or Debian contributor) around at the destination and send a present to that person. This kind of love bombing is low cost and lots of fun and creates bonds parallel to those of the Web of Trust. Try It!
Dear Lazyweb: Au-Pair wanted!
So we will move back from Sweden to Germany after 7.5 years. Besides swedish nature and working culture we will surely also miss swedish broadband. On the other hand we survived swedish health care without serious repercussions and look forward to the german alternative.
So after having found a really nice house in Lübeck's historic center we now look for an swedish Au-Pair. One of the main goals with that would be to help our children to keep their swedish language skills. If anyone reading this knows someone interested in working as an Au-Pair during 2008 please have them contact me.
This years first Extremadura work meeting with people from Debian Edu, FAI, Debian-Science and Debian-Med takes place at time of writing. The group is 20 people (with some locals included). There is a rich supply of good spanish food so I skipped dinner yesterday in order to let my digestive system recuperate and get work done at the same time. I feel tempted to do that again today. Having stared and poked at FAIs new partition framework makes me consider partman as an alternative.