Saturday, August 26, 2006

Ia Ora, GNOME, photography

Ia Ora:
During last month, I've been working with our graphist on a new theme for soon to be released Mandriva 2007.0, since our previous theme (Galaxy) needed to be refreshed a little (it was already 3 years old). So, we prevent Ia Ora (which means hi for french polynesians). And because different people have different tastes in colours, we will provide it in 4 colors : dark blue, light blue, yellow/orange and gray. GNOME/GTK 2 engine is already available in Mandriva 2007.0 beta2 (beta 3 should be available next week) and KDE engine will be available soon. And of course, mandatory screenshots are available here. Dark blue version is considered almost final, other colored versions will be tuned next week, they are not dark enough for controls.

As part of release team, I did RC1 release of GNOME 2.16 (2.15.92) last tuesday. I must confess it was quite painful, mainly because it was the first release I managed (even if I'm part of release team for quite some time) and getting a complete build to succeed and work from scratch using tarballs is not easy at all (we are using jhbuild for that, not GARNOME whose maintainers take care of the various caveats of building a entire stack). And doing that when you are working in parallel on fixing bugs for next beta release of your distribution is really stressing. Anyway, release is out, please test it and reports bugs as early as possible, so maintainers have enough time to fix them before 2.16.0. (Subliminal ad : 2.15.92 is already available in Mandriva cooker and will be available in 2007.0 beta 3 released next week ;)

Since last GUADEC and my visit of Barcelona, I've been doing a lot of reading and research about my photography needs. Trigger was this photo and Kathy Siera keynote about passionate users. You can clearly see a nice but unwanted) distorsion which made me release I needed to learn a little more about photography basis and maybe change my camera (my Canon S60 is still nice but not as powerful as a digital reflex). So, I bought and read both "National Geographic Practical Photography Guide" (a small and good guide you can take even when travelling) and the excellent "New Manual of Photography" from J. Hedgecoe (a must, very complete and understandable). And I've been trying to apply some lessons learned from those readings since then in two walks in Paris. And now, I've almost convinced myself to buy a new camera. Initially, I thought about Canon 350D (aka Digital Xt) but with Canon 400D announce this week, I'll probably wait a little and buy this one. The though choice will be lenses one, since I mainly shoot landscapes and town building (in this case, often some details). If you have some hints (and please, don't tell me to buy only Canon EF L IS lenses, my budget is not infinite ;), feel free to comment. And to test this soon to be bought camera, I plan to visit my native neighbourhood (something I never did as a tourist) next October, ie la Lozère and probably Montpellier too, since I never went back there since I was a student.