Tux the Penguin Mask 6.0

Download the PDF here!   Tux the Penguin Mask 6.0

Reccomended Usage:

Lan Parties, Microsoft Developer Conferences, and wasting company printer paper.

Installation Notes:

Always ask for an adult’s assistance when using scissors.

Required Hardware:

Exacto Knife or Box Cutter reccomended.
Elastic String to tie around your big head.
Color Printer (or BW Printer and Yellow Marker or Crayon)
Cardstock Paper

Release Notes:

6.0 Final Release
5.0 Note to Self: While actual penguins are waterproof, penguin masks are not.
4.0 Child Safety Recall after Multiple Reports of Moderate to Severe Paper Cuts and Asphyxiation.
3.0 Complete Re-Write, realized the mask actually looked like a seagull after usability testing.
2.0 Many Bugfixes and Added 3D Rendering Support.
1.0 Initial Alpha Release: Known Issue: Penguins do NOT have horns.

This is released under the Creative Commons BY-SA 2.0 License.

Here is the *almost* final product, yours should be better after I made a few changes to the PDF.

Tux the Penguin Mask 6.0

Get the PDF at the top of the post.


Using The US Postal Service To Distribute Linux CHEAPLY And Effectively

This is part one of a journey of wits and determination, in which I will distribute Linux using a physical medium to everyone in my appartment complex in suburban Utah, which has approximately 200 units.

I figure that’s about a thousand people who have probably never heard of Linux, and my apartments have a heavy concentration of US Air Force and is a fairly affluent area.  The parking lot looks like a new car dealership.  I would venture to guess that most of them have computers, and have a higher than average intelligence and willingness to try new things when it comes to using an operating system.  I could be totally wrong here, but we’ll see.

I spent awhile brainstorming some several methods to distribute Linux to the neighbors in my appartment complex.

The easiest would be to burn a bunch of CDs and just leave them where everyone visits at least once a week -the mailbox.  I could probably make a sign and have penguins on it or something but that would not make the impression I’m hoping for.

The door-to-door approach has merits, but I live in Utah, which is the capital of the world for door-to-door marketing.  There are an amazing amount of missionaries here that go door-to-door preaching religion.  Linix is pretty close to a religion, so I figure it wont go super well.

The United States Postal Service has the Electronic Media Box which will hold a CD or DVD case for NO CHARGE, but it’s for Priority Mailing only, which means it actually would cost me something around $4.00 or more apeice to actually ship.  I could always tape over the label and try to pay first class, but I’m sure that’s illegal.

Serious Direct Mail:   This seems like a good idea to send an actual Business Card CD Linux distribution in the mail to someone, but unfortunately it’s VERY VERY expensive.  I could spend an entire paycheck doing this here.  Scratch it off the list.

Corrugated Jewel case Mailers:  About $56 + $10.53 shipping for 200.  These look like the same ones that the USPS gives you for free.

AH!  I found it.  White Paperboard CD Sleeve minimum quanity of 500 for a for a total of $29.15!  Oh snap, $50.00 minimum order.

Ordering free Ubuntu CDs could also work OK, but up to 10 weeks for an order and unless it’s an organized event doesn’t seem like I could get 200 CDs for free to send to people who may not want it anyways.

I’m going to keep looking, but I’m thinking the best course of action will be to get paper sleeves and mail them first class, and if anyone requests another due to it breaking in the mail, I’ll send another out.  It’ll likely be cheaper in the long run.

Part Two of this article will be the actual written material that I’ll put inside the CD Mailer.
Part Three will be a photo journal of the actual shipping process.
Part Four is going to be determined by whether or not I receive feedback from any people that have received the CD.

If you have ideas or suggestions to help me out in this, I would appreciate a comment or an email to

Thanks for reading!

I’ve come to the conclusion that I should avoid using the mail after all. I’m targeting a very specific area with less than 200 homes, and why not deliver these myself? I can burn some calories AND probably deliver more than what I could in a CD mailer envelope.

So I’ve come up with the alternate plan of simply canvasing the area with plastic door bags with an Ubuntu CD and some printed information.

Humor Linux Video

This Guy Installs Linux In Places No Man Should

Every once in awhile I’ll post a worthy Linux-related video on the blog. I just watched this one tonight, and the acting was not great, but I laughed so hard when he installed the Linux File Server on the Toilet running on dial-up. LOL!


Five Reasons Why Using Firefox On Windows Will Help You (Or Your Company) Migrate To Linux

Firefox has been my browser of choice for several years, and prior to that, I first came in contact with the technology that runs behind the browser, called the Gecko Renderer in early 1998. The thing that impressed me the most back then was how much FASTER the Gecko engine rendered pages as compared to Internet Explorer on a dial-up connection.

Here’s a short list of reasons why Firefox will help you if you ever decide to try out or switch to Linux (or Mac OSX for that matter).

  1. Firefox runs on Windows and all popular operating systems.
    Whether you prefer Windows, Mac, Linux, whatever, your favorite flavor of O/S, Firefox runs on it.
  2. The interface is the largely the same on Linux and Windows.
    The default interface and theme for Firefox is exactly the same no matter what O/S you are using.
    For me, the biggest change was where the Preferences item was displayed. Using the Menu Editor plugin for Firefox allows you to move around menu items, or hide them completely. I have found this HUGELY helpful for my own migration to Linux, as Preferences is located in the “Edit” menu at the top of the screen, as opposed to the Windows version of Firefox that actually has the Preferences menu located until “Tools.” Just install the plugin and move it easily.
  3. If you feel comfortable browsing the web, that’s a big step towards being familiar with the computer as a whole.
    Many time, when I have a problem or something I want to do in Linux and I don’t know how, I google for it. Using a browser like Firefox that has a standard interface among all operating systems, lets me feel comfortable while I’m searching on a topic that I am unfamiliar with.
  4. Add-ons that you enjoy in Windows are also available for Linux.
    One of the biggest reasons I like Firefox is because of the practical unlimited amount of Add-ons written for it.
    Do you want the weather in your taskbar? Done. Do you want a music player controller embedded in the browser so you don’t have to alt-tab to skip a song? Done! If you can dream it up, it’s probably already there.
    They function exactly the same way in Windows and in Linux, because they’re built on a framework that integrates with Firefox.
    Some of my favorites include: StumbleUpon, Adblock Plus, IE Tab (when using Windows), and DownloadStatusbar, Menu Editor and Stop-or-Reload Button
  5. Firefox is accepted as the most popular browser for users on any distribution of Linux.
    Firefox is bundled by default on the following distributions: Ubuntu (and it’s derevitives), Fedora, openSUSE, Mandriva, PCLinuxOS, SimplyMEPIS, CentOS, etc. Most Linux Distributions also make it easy to get and install Firefox if it is not installed by default.

If you don’t think these reasons are enough, humor me and try it out. I bet you’ll love the tabbed browsing and lack of advertisements when using Adblock Plus, which gets rid of nearly all ads out there. It’s terrific and no more annoying talking ads!


Buy a Dell-Supported Ubuntu PC and plant a tree for $385

I think I’ve got a for a new PC for the girlfriend! This is actually CHEAPER than building yourself.  In the end you save a pretty penny, because the upgrade to 1GB of RAM is free, and you save $100 off the total price of the system (limited time offer).

Check out the specs:

Intel®Pentium® dual-core processor E2140 (1MB L2, 1.60GHz, 800 FSB)
Ubuntu Desktop Edition version 7.04
1GB Dual Channel DDR2 SDRAM at 667MHz- 2DIMMs
160GB Serial ATA Hard Drive (7200RPM) w/DataBurst Cache™
48X CD-RW/ DVD Combo Drive
128MB NVIDIA GeForce 8300GS
Integrated 7.1 Channel Audio
Dell USB Keyboard and Dell Optical USB Mouse

1Yr In-Home Service, Parts + Labor, 24×7 Phone Support
Support Reforestation: Plant a Tree for Me

This is an amazing deal from Dell. And if you’re a really cheap bastard, you can save an additional $6 by not planting a tree.

Help support Ubuntu by purchasing here.


Are Windows users *really* interested in Linux?

I’ve gone though my website logs to see just what kind of visitors I’ve had in the last few days. I’ve received well over 2000 page views over the entirety of my blog, with a majority of those being referred from the Linux section in Digg, where I submit most of my articles.

But this part is what is so puzzling – 46% of unique visitors to my website in the past few days are using Windows. It goes something like this:

1. Windows 46.10% visitors by Operating System
2. Linux 44.96%
3. Macintosh 7.23%
4. Other 1.71%

“Interesting information,” you’re saying, “but why do I care?” I’ll tell you why. I only write about Linux here.

However, Internet Explorer users alone account for 300% more traffic than any of the other browsers. That’s a aneurysm waiting to happen for Microsoft!

Games Linux

What do you do when your girlfriend wants to play N64 games on Linux?

Answer: Get it working. No matter how much time or effort it takes. Then blog about it, and finally have her read your post.

About 2 months ago, before I made the switch to Linux full-time, I installed the Project64 emulator when I was running Windows.

I started up Mario64 with a Saitek USB joypad and the girlfriend came over and asked to play. She absolutely LOVED it. So much in fact, that she has mentioned it about it every few days for the past two weeks or so.

If you know anything about women, this means she REALLY wants to get her game on.

As far as legality goes, I can’t get much more legal than Mario 64 – I’ve got a Nintendo 64 sitting in my closet with a plethora of games including Mario 64, which was included with the game system. Unfortunately the process of backing up a ROM is the legal grey area here. I am not a lawyer and this is not legal advice. You are on your own.

You might be asking yourself this question: If you’ve got an N64, why the heck are you using an emulator?

Firewall Linux

This is the Fastest review EVER of 5 Linux firewall distributions.*

*fastest review by this author.

I’ve got a P3 500MHz PC w/ 192MB of RAM and a 1GB Transcend Flash IDE module that I’ve been running as a Linux-based IPCop firewall platform for around the last two years.  It’s been running IPCop after testing out m0n0wall, SmoothWall, pfSense and IPCop.  pfSense impressed me, but wasn’t quite polished enough for me.  m0n0wall and SmoothWall had their various problems with the current releases back then, and IPCop won my vote by default.

Two years have passed since then, lets see if there’s anything different this time around.

Games Linux

The 10 Best Games Playable on Linux through Wine

Battlefield 21421. Battlefield 2142: is a first person shooter designed by DICE and is the fourth game in the Battlefield series. Titan mode gameplay is extremely fun and gives plenty of meaning to the mindless shoot em up style game.

BF 2142 is playable only after a somewhat complicated installation and configuration.

Counter-Strike: Source2. Counter-Strike: Source This game needs no introduction. It has been kicking ass and taking names since 2004. With so many modifications to CS:S, you will never get bored. I’ve been having a blast playing Zombie Mod which pits both Terrorists and CTs alike against Zombies with knives… get knived, turn into a zombie.

CS:S is playable after moderate configuration.

Day of Defeat Source3. Day of Defeat: Source This is just one of those games that just seems to have tons of players on at any time of day or night. Very popular, extremely playable using Wine.

Not much is needed here to get things working properly.

Enemy Territory Quake Wars4. Enemy Territory: Quake Wars iD software is releasing a linux native version of this game. I’ve played the beta for several hours and came away impressed. I’d venture to say the game is a Battlefield-style shooter with plenty of vehicles and being able to play as a Strogg is definitely refreshing for a change.

Although it’s not quite 100% true to form, it would be best to get the linux native client.

Garry’s Mod5. Garry’s Mod Who? Garry. This game runs very well with a few quirks (intermittent slowdowns), installs right from Steam with no issues. Very playable. Mods even work just fine!


Now I see why people like Ubuntu.

Well I tried ArchLinux for all of the amount of time it took to install the distribution.

It’s not fantastic.  Seems like the community-developed package directory is by FAR more superior to Portage, and silly things like adding repository URLs to apt-get or yum.

I gave Fedora 7 a try and… I’m writing this to you right now in their wonderful Gnome environment.  I have the same problem I did with it about a year ago, which is no mp3/etc support out of the box, nor an easy solution like Ubuntu has with a waiver of responsibility.

I also attempted to get the nVidia binary driver working in Fedora just now with a very easy guide… that failed miserably.

I think from now on I’m just going to work towards having a dual-boot setup.  Windows for when I need to get things done (or blow people up), and Ubuntu when I feel like a challenge and learning something new.