It’s Like Bringing Mutton to a Vegan Swap

So, as previously mentioned on the site…

I’m going to be participating in the FLOSS Weekly Podcast on Wednesday the 19th. FLOSS stands for “Free Libre Open Source Software,” and each week hosts Randal Schwartz and Leo Laporte interview people involved in the development of Free and Open Source Software.

Well, almost each week. This week they’ve decided to do something a little different and interview some webcartoonists instead.

There is Jeff Darlington of General Protection Fault, Chris Kohler, the webmaster for the site that publishes Bill Holbrook’s Kevin and Kell, and me. Also participating are Leo Laporte and Randal Schwartz (as previously stated), and finally Jono Bacon, the Community Manager for Ubuntu.

Guess which one of us has absolutely no programming experience whatsoever? Go on. Guess. Here’s a hint: he’s also the guy who publishes a webcomic who has no artistic skill whatsoever.

My main claim to fame in all this, I think, is that I have embraced Free Software and permissive IP licensing pretty enthusiastically — the machine I do everything on runs Kubuntu, I use Inkscape and GIMP for all my graphics work, and use Drupal to publish the site… not to mention I use a Creative Commons license to distribute my work.

Yes, I could be a freaking Free Software/Open Source Poster Child on that show. If only Linux would let me!

As it happens, FLOSS uses Skype to handle all the interviews. Skype enables voice over internet chatting and webcam video streaming, which lets them show all participants talking to each other on a video feed.

Unfortunately my linux install doesn’t work well with Skype. Jeff Darlington, Chris Kohler and I ran a little test on Sunday night and we discovered that every time I talked into my microphone there was up to a full minute’s delay before anyone else heard me.

Me, I blame Pulseaudio. Pulseaudio is a technology that is intended to allow multiple programs to access a computer’s sound card at the same time. What it actually does is make a whole lot of stuff stop working, which is an unofficial feature that is pretty well documented at this time. Attempting to remove pulseaudio completely isn’t a practical solution because when I try it tries to uninstall my entire desktop (curse you apt-get! *shakes fist*) so I’m stuck with trying to work around it as best I can.

And the best workaround appears to be my Windows 7 partition.

That’s right. I have a 160mb (edit: that should be gb, not mb, please disregard the pain you feel just behind your eye sockets) partition with the Windows 7 Release Candidate running on it. Until Sunday night the only things I had installed on it were a few games (most notably Fallout 3 that were slowly gathering dust, since I’ve managed to get most of them to run under Wine. But now Windows 7 is also running Skype, because wouldn’t you know it but Skype and Windows 7 co-exist perfectly.

So Wednesday, when I’m waxing rhapsodic about the power of Free and Open Source Software, open licenses, and all that jazz, I’ll be doing it on one of the most Cathedral-like Cathedrals that ever loomed over the Bazaar.

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