11.24.08

Wikia Search from Firefox sidebar

Posted in Uncategorized at 3:38 pm by Pirate Praveen

I have been following Wikia Search for some time and it has grown to a pretty usable level now. The idea is much similar to Wikipedia, users get to create content, in this case users get to create the search index. One cool thing is the option to create custom applications called Wikia Intelligent Search Extensions (WISE) for wikia search. There is already applications for popular sites such as Digg, Youtube, WordPress. You can follow this tutorial to build your own application.

I was searching in mozilla add-ons site for adding it to my search bar, but could not find it. So I wrote one.

Add Wikia Search to your firefox search Bar Now

Later I found this Wikia Toolbar for firefox. But if all you want is just the search bar addition and not the full fledged tool bar, you can try mine.

Update: Santhosh pointed out that once you are in search.wikia.com, the option to add Wikia Search to the search bar appears in the drop down where you normally select your search engine from the list. Thanks Santhosh for the heads up.

Update 2: My add-on is public now (no need to login before installing it).

Congratulations! Your nominated add-on, Wikia Search, has been reviewed by a Mozilla Add-ons editor who approved your add-on to be public.

Your most recent version (20081124) has also been made public.

You can view your public add-on now at: http://addons.mozilla.org/addon/9731

Review Information:
Reviewer: Archaeopteryx
Comments: Thank you for submitting this search engine.

Dual Licensing explained

Posted in Free Software at 11:35 am by Pirate Praveen

There was a discussion on ilugd about how Sun can continue to provide VirtualBox non-OSE edition despite there is a GPLed version.

Dual licensing and Free Software business models in general are one of my favorite topics. So I sat down and made a diagram explaining the source code flow of a dual licensed software.

11.21.08

Novell and the Free Software community

Posted in Free Software at 2:39 pm by Pirate Praveen

A message with great insight, which I found in the flurry of messages back and forth in all major mailing lists across India.

In a debate on question of “free vs non-free” or “role of non-free in free
conferences”, this one is drifting towards private and personal references
which can be avoided. Let not Novell get off the hook by stirring trouble
here. There are countless private conferences and symposiums going around
nearby which promote themes of non-free and patents. No free software
activist goes there to register protest.

Differences of opinion are usually accorded highest priority in a democratic
institution, as they may be revealing something very surprising or
innovative – silencing and subjugating are hallmarks of despotic or
autocratic institutions. No one expects the entire rank and file of
organisers to be aware of non-free designs; Novell could have very well
evaded such a public scrutiny before gaining entry here, especially when it
has very little public presence in Kerala.

Free Software conferences serve many purposes and we can accept that one
such method in revealing or knowing about non-free intrusions could be
through some kind of non-violent protest – stickers, posters and T-shirts
are hallmarks of FS protests. Now many of us know what Novell does, and such
an exposure on Novell coincides perfectly with the theme of our public
conference in disseminating concepts on Free Software.

Since public institutions have a say on private lives, it cannot be beyond
criticism. Just like “divine rights” cannot be placed over “human rights”,
it would be equally suicidal if we uncritically submitted to “political
rights” of any party. After all, political parties gain power only after
they appeal before citizens – notably the poor-off ones. Hence sharing dias
or approaching leaders is in no way a transgression, it falls perfectly
under rights of citizens. No established leader or representative would ever
think this way.

Here, a wrong has been committed by (a) humiliating an individual who
protests against a non-free incursion inside a Free Software conference and
disseminates non-free ideology and (b) protecting the non-free intruder to
display their non-free trickery without objections. Novell has succeeded in
driving the wedge, inflicting a kind of perfect damage to a contributors’
community and getting away scot-free.

CK Raju