Transfer files through ftp with FileZilla

Throughout my blogging years and web experiences Filezilla has been of great use. The Filezilla client allows transfering of files through FTP, FTPS, and SFTP. Actually, you can also delete files on your server or rename them.

It runs nicely on Windows, Linux, BSD, Mac OS X, and you can run it through a USB drive with Portable Apps.

If you prefer to run something similar on your Firefox, you may also try out FireFTP.

By the way, get an FTP client from time to time and download all of the server files to make sure you have a safely secured backup. 🙂

Colonization gaming – FreeCol

FreeCol is an open source clone of the Colonization game. I admit, during college I was a bit addicted to this game, my style of strategy gaming.

For those who are not familiar, this is a strategy game where your objective is to Colonize the entire world with your nationality. So, you build your cities, grow them, build an army and expand your borders. Sounds pretty simple but for people like me, fun stuff to do for hours and hours.

FreeCol isn’t yet on its full release version yet, it is still on 0.7.4 about to release v.0.8. But, from the looks it is working pretty well. It runs on Windows, Linux, and Mac OS X.

Use web applications offline with Gears

The Firefox add-on Gears, formerly known as Google Gears, allows you to use web applications as if they were installed on your computer. Consider it as a fancier offline browsing.

So, basically the data instead of being completely stored on the web is actually stored in your computer. You’ll have access whenever you want. The number of websites compatible with Gears isn’t that huge at the moment but there are some very good ones already adopting it such as RememberTheMilk, Google Docs, Zoho, Google Reader, and most recently MySpace.

Gears has been extra handy on my laptop, in places with no wi-fi I can still browse through the day’s headline news and continue to work on some documents with Google Docs. I just wish for the day to come when GMail comes out with Gears support.

Dear readers, any other websites you would like to use Gears with?

Battle for Wesnoth

Battle for Wesnoth is a pretty cool game RPG style where you’ll build up and lead an army to conquer the entire map / world. The game has over 200 units in 16 different races so there you’ll not get bored easily.

Being open source any one has the freedom to build other maps and scenarios. You can also do the social gaming thing through its multi-player interaction. I actually enjoyed this while in college, a nice way to kill time and while interacting with other people across the globe.


One of the most active opensource games, it is available in more then 30 different languages and will run on Windows, Max OSX and several Linux distros

Firefox 3, almost 24 hours away!

The folks at Mozilla will be giving us the full stable Firefox 3 in a bit more than 24 hours. A really really nice improvement from the 2.0 release which now seems pretty ancient for all of those already testing beta releases and release candidates.

Mozilla is even trying to set a new world record for most number of downloads of a single software in one day. Join in the campaign if you’d like as well.

Download Day - English

Most importantly, download Firefox 3 on June 17th. Your computer will thank you with less resources consumed, your patience will thank you for not having to go through a bunch of frequent browser crashes, and even web developers will thank you for the switch (actually, web developers thank you using anything besides IE).

Songbird 0.6 is out!

SongbirdSongbird, our favorite open source music manager has just released their 0.6 version. According to the website, the new release is “harder, better, faster, stronger”.

Looking at the release notes, it shows that the team has been placing quite a bit of work to improve its performance and usability. This project created by Mozilla promises to be the next big thing in the way you discover, play, and manage your music. We actually agree.

Although it hasn’t reached its mature full 1.0 release yet, Songbird has been of quite good use for us since last year. I really like the add-ons built for it and its main strength, being able to browse the web and discover songs with it.

Updated VirtualBox

VirtualboxVirtualbox, our favorite multi-platform virtualization software has just been upgraded to version 1.6.2. This was mainly a bug fix upgrade.

The main reason for me to post this here is to remind our readers to make an upgrade to one of the most recent versions of Virtualbox if your current version is giving some problems.

My VirtualBox on Linux was completely gone, all of a sudden it just stopped working. But then all I needed to do was uninstall it and install again. What happened was that after it got purchased by Sun, the repositories changed so for some reason the software wasn’t cooperating much with me.

Now I can go back to testing some more Linux OSs.

Open source program to stay healthy

Looking to loose some weight? Open source multi-platform program CRON-O-Meter helps you keep track of your diet.

It looks like a pretty neat program. You tell it what you’re eating and it’ll give you a nice report of the vitamins, minerals, proteins you’re taking in each day. The program will even give you suggestions on what you should eat, so you’ll never be in doubt again on  whether you should eat a salad or a burger for lunch.


Cron-O-Meter uses USDA datasources to keep track of the nutritional facts of over 7000 food items.

You can install the program on Linux, Windows, and MacOS X. For the Ubuntu I use there isn’t an easy way to install, the app runs on Java and the guide I found that could help through the installation was written by Carlos here.

Strategy game – Freeciv

Freeciv was inspired by one of my favorite computer games, Civilization.

For those unfamiliar with this game, it is a strategy game where your objective is to manage a civilization from its birth until world domination (through military or cultural advancements). You can play against the computer or multiplayer through the net.


Freeciv has a bunch of maps and scenarios already loaded in it, and dozens of units (some I hadn’t even found on the proprietary Civilization).

This is a pretty active open source project, being translated in well over 20 languages and it runs on Windows, Linux, and MacOS X.

Let’s heard it from you, does it stand up to the proprietary Civilization?

How I manage my money – GnuCash

Not too long ago I searched through several accounting / money managing software and GnuCash was the best open source software program I could find for the job. To start, I really like it because it works on several different OS such as Windows, Linux, BSD, and MacOS X.

At first the program is a bit complicated to get used to because it uses the double-entry accounting principle where you always have to list where the money is coming from and going to. But, this system was very useful for me to track my money with quite a bit of details of where everything was going to.

GnuCash double-entry

With it you can get very useful reports and graphs to have a quick overview of your finances, compared to previews months, to other accounts you set, or even to different expenses categories.

GnuCash reports

Another thing I like about GnuCash is that it works easily with multiple currencies, just set the conversion rate and when everything is factored together, the currencies are automatically adjusted.

GnuCash also plays well with some proprietary softwares by importing QIF and OFX files. There are a bunch of other very useful features you can see on their website.