Thursday, June 28, 2007

Lordy, Lordy, Look Who's 40 - ATM Machines!

It's hard to believe that, at one time, in order to do our banking, we had to go to a bank teller to perform our transactions, and we had to make sure that we did those transactions during "banker's hours" (9:00 AM - 4:00 PM). Now, we can perform our banking transactions 24/7 with the Internet and ATM machines.

Forty years ago, the first ATM machine was implemented in the United Kingdom at a north London branch of Barclays Bank. Back then, the machine only dispensed cash. The man credited for developing the first ATM machine at Barclays Bank is John Shepherd-Barron, OBE. ATMs really didn't catch on in the United States until about 5 years later, although Shepherd-Barron did present the idea to Miami bankers in 1967.

Apparently there is a controversy on who really invented the ATM machine. While the UK acknowledges Shepherd-Barron as the "inventor" of the ATM machine, the Smithsonian Institute actually credits American Don Wetzel as the "inventor" of the ATM machine. Web site ATM Machine, a company that sells ATM machines, actually did comprehensive research on who is the real inventor of the ATM.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

An Interesting Article on the Most Technically Proficient Generation

Animator Eddie Fitzgerald, author of the blog Uncle Eddie's Theory Corner, wrote a fantastic article on how technology impacted the latest generation, dubbed the "iGeneration" by Jorge Garrido. Even though the article is oriented toward how technology has impacted the animation business, the article contains an interesting social commentary on technology and the current generation.

While it's not a "geeky" article on technology topics, it's a good article to give the digithead an understanding on how his or her work impacts society and business.

Read the article here:
Is the Millenial Generation Different?

Thursday, June 14, 2007

I'm wearing my "blue" Fedora...more Fedora info

Well, I was able to successfully install Fedora Core 5 on an old Pentium II laptop. I was able to configure my wireless network card on the laptop using ndiswrapper, but I get a kernel panic every time I try to connect to a network. (It c/b that I'm using a too new version of ndiswrapper.) I'm not worried about being able to use the network card because this was just an experiment anyway.

I was also able to successfully install Fedora Core 6 on my Centrino laptop as a dual-boot between Windows XP and Fedora. However, I didn't allocate enough space for what I wanted to do with it, so I'm somewhat limited to what I can install and what I can't install (I only allocated 5G space, and after installing the office tools and the software tools, it took up 3.5G space - eep!).

Anyhow, I wanted to post some helpful links for those of you who are converting to Fedora:

  • The Fedora Project's Presentations Site - While some of the presentations are aimed at people who will be doing kernel development for Fedora, there are some interesting presentations for end-users and Fedora administrators as well.

  • Fedora Core 6 Tips and Techniques - A very nice site giving some generic tips on how to work with Fedora Core 6.

  • Fedora Core Getting Started - Aimed at Windows users, this nice article explains the basics of Fedora. This article focuses on the end-user applications with Fedora.

I'd love to hear about your experiences with Fedora or other flavors of Linux.

Sunday, June 3, 2007

Fedora Users: Help with the "make" command

In a few weeks, I'll be teaching a Linux Administration class, and I'll be preparing for my vendor-neutral Linux certifications as well. One of the experiments that I'm doing before class starts is installing Fedora Core 5 on a Pentium II machine. (I got it installed and working, but it was a pain to do!) I digress, though.

While I was working on my install, I was inspired to do a few posts on using Fedora. One of the most popular questions that I found on the Internet was people who were having trouble with using the make command. Particularly, when they use the make command, they get a Can't find kernel build files in .... type of error.

The reason why the Can't find kernel build files in .... occurs is the kernel-devel package is not installed on your machine. So, how to fix the error?

  • If your Fedora machine can connect to the Internet or you are on a network that has a yum server, use the command yum install kernel-devel.

  • If your Fedora machine cannot connect to the Internet, you will need to get the package and use RPM.

    This is the link to Fedora's RPM page

    • To get the actual kernel installed on your machine, run the command uname -r. You want to "jot down" the number that returns to you. For example, on my machine, the number that returned to me was 2.6.15-1.2054_FC5

    • You are going to need the kernel-devel-your kernel number returned from uname -r.rpm file. If this is not in your disk distribution, then you are going to have to find a machine with an Internet connection and download it.

    • Once you get the correct file, assumming that you are in the same directory as where you put the file, run the command rpm -ivh kernel-devel-your kernel number returned from uname -r.rpm

Hope this helps.