Tag Archives: reviews

Upgrade from Ubuntu 12.04 to 12.10, Ubuntu 12.10 Review

This week I decided to upgrade to the latest release of Ubuntu, 12.10. I had thought about using 12.04 LTS until the next LTS came out, but I was getting a little tired of random Compiz crashing, and I was just generally curious. Here is my review of some of the differences, experiences, and new things I found in 12.10 that mattered to me.

Setup

I started the install on my  HP G42-415DX with ATI Mobility Radeon HD 4250 Graphics and 8GB of RAM.

Install

After backing up my home folder, I decided not to upgrade, but to just install fresh by electing to erase my hard drive and start fresh. The install was rather quick over a USB live install of 12.10. Once the install was over it booted, rather quickly I might add, into the login shell. I noticed that I could no longer select 2D when logging in (which I expected).

No restricted drivers, everything worked out of the box hardware wise. I will say that this install was the best ever using Ubuntu.

Performance

The default video drivers performed perfect and I haven’t touched them. I did find Unity much slower than 12.04, but it seems to help to remove some of the lenses, but it’s still slower than 12.04. Other than that everything has performed pretty much the same. I did find the video to be much snappier and responsive, less static and flashes too. Dual displays worked great!

Visual Differences

Tabs were re-done to appear much nicer and buttons are smaller. The notification area has been made simpler, if there is only one user the user-switcher does not show up. The launcher works crisper and animations seem to be a lot better. In 12.04 I was always frustrated with it’s usability and notifications. In 12.10, when a notification is thrown, it properly pops out the icon so you notice.

Otherwise it’s pretty much the same. Unity has square highlights vs rounded highlights too.

Applications

Empathy got a good work-over and I feel it looks a lot better. Online accounts (which Empathy uses) is in the Settings panel. Gwibber does not work at all. The notification applet also always shows you as offline.

The best part is that ALT-TAB does not fold tabs in Chrome. This was really annoying in 12.04 as I had to ALT-TAB through each tab in Chrome.

Overall

If you are wondering if 12.10 is worth it, I would suggest it is. The removal of restricted drivers and more “just working” makes it a great release.  But, as always, your hardware setup will always change things. I’m glad I upgraded.

Voxer; I’ve been missing out!

So, my friend has been ranting about Voxer for some time, and I haven’t ever really gave it a shot. Not sure why, just never did. Well, now that I have, I hope I never have to send a text again.

I hate texting…yes…and just on the phone. Typing on those damn small keyboards are just so hard to do, even with Swipe! But, with Voxer I can have an at-my-own-pace conversation with someone with time to think in between exchanges! It’s the beauty of text without the thumb workout.

Anyways, I recommend you give it a try; it’s awesome!

What is Voxer?

Okay, so you probably don’t even know what it is. What Voxer is- is a way to send messages to your contacts in the form of audio. What you’ll do is one of two things: 1) you will have Voxer open with a friend and hold down a button a talk (walkie-talkie style) and it sends as you speak, your friend will be hearing what you say, no send, just talk. If you don’t close out your friend will vox you back and you will hear him/her as they talk right back. Think walkie-talkie. Or, 2) you will close out your app and get a notification that someone voxed you and you can click on it and see what they said and start voxing them back, all with your voice!

Check out Voxer

The Future of Google+

Google Plus Icon

I’m gonna admit it, I want to be on Google Plus all the time! It’s not because I hate Facebook or anything, it’s just I’m so ingrained into Google’s integration that, hey, if they can integrate my online social life, then I’m totally for it!

Google Plus isn’t a bad attempt at a social network either. Many don’t see it, but I see it being a real part of all our daily lives. Now that they have integrated Local into Google Plus, I think Google is on there way to make the right kind of moves to making their social network a real place to socialize.

Other great moves Google+ is making:

  • Photos/Video auto-uploading to your Google+ account to share later
  • Integration with your contacts on your phone
  • Circles
  • Hangouts 

Hangouts is that dangerous thing that Facebook doesn’t have that makes me think, “What the hell Facebook, how can you ignore this?” Hangouts are great, my mom even did a hangout with me and my brother and said something like, “This is better than Skype.” Now, that’s huge! Dissing on Skype? That is a big deal if you ask me.

Google+ just also added Events, something I felt was one of those features a social network just couldn’t leave out. And, like I said, Google, I feel, is just making all the right moves.

Now, that doesn’t mean I don’t believe in Facbook…they are the original social network, and they are doing things right. But…this is how I see it: the social world would be much better if, no matter what platform you were on, Google could talk to Facebook and vice versa; some kind of open platform. But, I just like how Google is doing it. Circles, hangouts, and tight integration with devices is just not what Facebook is doing. Sure lists and chat are okay, but come on, compared to hangouts or circles!?

I mean, if Facebook would just catch up to the kinds of things Google is doing, hey I’d say Google is good, but hey Facebook is keeping up. But, this isn’t so much a review as a prediction….

With control and integration with Android, Circles, and Hangouts … just give it time. Google may be the new home for the next generation. And THAT is what Facebook needs to worry about!