Please, choose the right format to send me that text. Thanks.
April 13th 2010

I just received an e-mail with a very interesting text (recipies for pintxos), and it prompted some experiment. The issue is that the text was inside of a DOC file (of course!), which rises some questions and concerns on my side. The size of the file was 471 kB.

I thought that one could make the document more portable by exporting it to PDF (using OpenOffice.org). Doing so, the resulting file has a size of 364 kB (1.29 times smaller than the original DOC).

Furthermore, text formatting could be waived, by using a plain text format. A copy/paste of the contents of the DOC into a TXT file yielded a 186 kB file (2.53x smaller).

Once in the mood, we can go one step further, and compress the TXT file: with gzip we get a 51 kb file (9.24x), and with xz a 42 kB one (11.2x)

So far, so good. No surprise. The surprise came when, just for fun, I exported the DOC to ODT. I obtained a document equivalent to the original one, but with a 75 kB size! (6.28x smaller than the DOC).

So, for summarizing:

DOC

Pros

  • Editable.
  • Allows for text formatting.

Cons

  • Proprietary. In principle only MS Office can open it. OpenOffice.org can, but because of reverse engineering.
  • If opened with OpenOffice.org, or just a different version of MS Office, the reader can not be sure of seeing the same formatting the writer intended.
  • Size. 6 times bigger than ODT. Even bigger than PDF.
  • MS invented and owns it. You need more reasons?

PDF

Pros

  • Portability. You can open it in any OS (Windows, Linux, Mac, BSD...), on account of there being so many free PDF readers.
  • Smaller than the DOC.
  • Allows for text formatting, and the format the reader sees will be exactly the one the writer intended.

Cons

  • Not editable (I really don't see the point in editing PDFs. For me the PDF is a product of an underlying format (e.g. LaTeX), as what you see on your browser is the product of some HTML/PHP, or an exe is the product of some source code. But I digress.)
  • Could be smaller

TXT

Pros

  • Portability. You can't get much more portable than a plain text file. You can edit it anywhere, with your favorite text editor.
  • Size. You can't get much smaller than a plain text file (as it contains the mere text content), and you can compress it further with ease.

Cons

  • Formatting. If you need text formatting, or including pictures or content other than text, then plain text is not for you.

ODT

Pros

  • Portability. It can be edited with OpenOffice.org (and probably others), which is free software, and has versions for Windows, Linux, and Mac.
  • Editability. Every bit as editable as DOC.
  • Size. 6 times smaller files than DOC.
  • It's a free standard, not some proprietary rubbish.

Cons

  • None I can think of.

So please, if you send me some text, first consider if plain text will suffice. If not, and no edition is intended on my side, PDF is fine. If edition is important (or size, because it's smaller than PDF), the ODT is the way to go.

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LWD - March 2010
March 4th 2010

This is a continuation post for my Linux World Domination project, started in this May 2008 post. You can read the previous post in the series here.

In the following data T2D means "time to domination" (the expected time for Windows/Linux shares to cross, counting from the present date). DT2D means difference (increase/decrease) in T2D, with respect to last report. CLP means "current Linux Percent", as given by last logged data, and DD means domination day (in YYYY-MM-DD format), and DCLP means "difference in CLP", with respect to last logged data.

Project T2D DT2D DD CLP DCLP
Einstein already crossed - September 2009 54.80 +3.45
MalariaControl >10 years - - 12.12 +0.17
PrimeGrid >10 years - - 11.78 +1.47
POEM >10 years - - 11.52 +0.69
Rosetta >10 years - - 8.61 +0.01
SETI >10 years - - 8.12 +0.05
QMC >10 years - - 8.11 -0.12
Spinhenge >10 years - - 4.46 +0.09

The numbers (again) seem a bit discouraging, but the data is what it is. Now MalariaControl goes up (it went down in previous report), but QMC goes slightly down. All others go up. The Linux tide seems unstoppable, however its forward speed is not necessarily high.

As promised, today I'm showing the plots for Spinhenge@home. In next issue, QMC@home.

Number of hosts percent evolution for Spinhenge@home (click to enlarge)

Accumulated credit percent evolution for Spinhenge@home (click to enlarge)

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LWD - December 2009
December 3rd 2009

This is a continuation post for my Linux World Domination project, started in this May 2008 post. You can read the previous post in the series here.

In the following data T2D means "time to domination" (the expected time for Windows/Linux shares to cross, counting from the present date). DT2D means difference (increase/decrease) in T2D, with respect to last report. CLP means "current Linux Percent", as given by last logged data, and DD means domination day (in YYYY-MM-DD format), and DCLP means "difference in CLP", with respect to last logged data. I have dropped the "Confidence" column, for it gave little or no info.

Project T2D DT2D DD CLP DCLP
Einstein already crossed - September 2009 51.35 +4.24
MalariaControl >10 years - - 11.95 -0.32
POEM 83.4 months - 2016-10-08 11.52 +0.69
PrimeGrid >10 years - - 10.31 +0.46
Rosetta >10 years - - 8.60 +0.10
QMC >10 years - - 8.23 +0.15
SETI >10 years - - 8.07 +0.05
Spinhenge >10 years - - 4.37 +0.15

Except for the good news that Einstein@home has succumbed to the Linux hordes, the numbers (again) seem quite discouraging, but the data is what it is. All CLPs but MalariaControl have gone up (which goes down less than in previous report). The Linux tide seems unstoppable, however its forward speed is not necessarily high.

As promised, today I'm showing the plots for Rosetta@home, in next issue Spinhenge@home.

Number of hosts percent evolution for Rosetta@home (click to enlarge)

Accumulated credit percent evolution for Rosetta@home (click to enlarge)

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No market for Linux games? The Koonsolo case
September 19th 2009

I've read via Phoronix the case of the indie PC game producer Koonsolo, which sells a game for both Windows, Mac and Linux. The interesting thing is that, as you can read on Koonsolo's blog, the Linux version is being sold in larger numbers than the Windows one!

Apparently a 40% of the visitors or the Koonsolo site use Windows, vs less than 23% for Linux. However, despite the majority of visitors using Windows (there are even more Mac visitors than Linux ones), the Linux version sales amount to a 34% of the total sales, whereas Windows sales are only 23%. Visit the site for some more numbers and comments.

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LDW - September 2009
September 2nd 2009

This is a continuation post for my Linux World Domination project, started in this May 2008 post. You can read the previous post in the series here.

In the following data T2D means "time to domination" (the expected time for Windows/Linux shares to cross, counting from the present date). DT2D means difference (increase/decrease) in T2D, with respect to last report. CLP means "current Linux Percent", as given by last logged data, and DD means domination day (in YYYY-MM-DD format).

Project T2D DT2D DD CLP Confidence %
Einstein 38.6 days -55 days 2009-10-10 47.11 (+2.60) 16.1
MalariaControl >10 years - - 12.27 (-0.37) -
POEM >10 years - - 10.83 (+0.17) -
PrimeGrid >10 years - - 9.85 (+0.24) -
Rosetta >10 years - - 8.50 (+0.13) -
QMC >10 years - - 8.07 (+0.15) -
SETI >10 years - - 8.02 (+0.02) -
Spinhenge >10 years - - 4.22 (+0.37) -

The numbers (again) seem quite discouraging, but the data is what it is. All CLPs but MalariaControl have gone up, with Spinhenge going up by almost a 0.4% in 3 months. The Linux tide seems unstoppable, however its forward speed is not necessarily high.

As promised, today I'm showing the plots for QMC@home, in next issue Rosetta@home.

Number of hosts percent evolution for QMC@home (click to enlarge)

Accumulated credit percent evolution for QMC"home (click to enlarge)

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LWD - June 2009
June 2nd 2009

This is a continuation post for my Linux World Domination project, started in this May 2008 post. You can read the previous post in the series here.

In the following data T2D means "time to domination" (the expected time for Windows/Linux shares to cross, counting from the present date). DT2D means difference (increase/decrease) in T2D, with respect to last report. CLP means "current Linux Percent", as given by last logged data, and DD means domination day (in YYYY-MM-DD format).

For the first time, data for PrimeGrid is included.

Project T2D DT2D DD CLP Confidence %
Einstein 4.5 months +3.5 months 2009-10-14 44.51 (+2.42) 6.4
MalariaControl >10 years - - 12.64 (+0.09) -
POEM >10 years - - 10.66 (+0.19) -
PrimeGrid 75 months - 2015-07-22 9.61 1.3
Rosetta >10 years - - 8.37 (+0.28) -
QMC >10 years - - 7.92 (+0.05) -
SETI >10 years - - 8.00 (+0.06) -
Spinhenge >10 years - - 3.87 (+0.28) -

Mmm, the numbers seem quite discouraging, but the data is what it is. On the bright side, all CLPs have gone up, some almost a 0.3% in 3 months. The Linux tide seems unstoppable, however its forward speed is not necessarily high.

As promised, today I'm showing the plots for PrimeGrid, in next issue QMC@home.

Number of hosts percent evolution for PrimeGrid (click to enlarge)

Accumulated credit percent evolution for PrimeGrid (click to enlarge)

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LWD - March 2009
March 12th 2009

Did I say "bimonthly" in my last report? Mmm, that was 3 months ago... You can read an intro for my Linux World Domination project in this May 2008 post.

As usual D2D means "days to domination" (the expected time for Windows/Linux shares to cross, counting from the present date), and DD2D means difference (increase/decrease) in D2D, with respect to last report. CLP means "current Linux Percent", as given by last logged data, and DD means domination day (in YYYY-MM-DD format).

Project D2D DD2D DD CLP Confidence %
Einstein 107 -144 2009-06-26 42.09 (+4.61) 17.3
MalariaControl >10k - - 12.55 (+0.10) -
POEM 5345 +325 2023-10-30 10.47 (+0.42) 2.5
Rosetta >10k - - 8.09 (+0.10) -
QMC >10k - - 7.87 (-0.04) -
SETI >10k - - 7.94 (+0.06) -
Spinhenge >10k - - 3.59 (+0.24) -

As promised, today I'm showing the plots for POEM@home, in next issue Prime@home.

Number of hosts percent evolution for POEM@home (click to enlarge)

Accumulated credit percent evolution for POEM@home (click to enlarge)

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Miniblogging from Catania
March 3rd 2009

Right now I'm in the 4th EGEE User Forum/OGF25 conference being held in Catania, Sicily.

I have some random thought to write down, and my lately little-attended blog seems the right place to do so.

Random thought of the moment: everyone, I mean every boy and girl and their pets, has a laptop. Everyone listens to talks with a laptop in their knees. Also, an amazing fraction of these (from 1 in 4 to 1 in 3, maybe) are Macs. The Linux machines are also relatively abundant, although a sad majority of laptops seems to run Windows.

Might this mean that techies favor Apple? Maybe it just means that geeks can also be posh, as shown by the equally high amount of iPhones I've seen around.

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LWD - December
December 2nd 2008

I will start making this section bimonthly, otherwise the only content of my blog will consist on it. Besides, the new information generation rate is not enough to require more often updates.

You can read an intro for my Linux World Domination project in this May 2008 post.

As usual D2D means "days to domination" (the expected time for Windows/Linux shares to cross, counting from the present date), and DD2D means difference (increase/decrease) in D2D, with respect to last report. CLP means "current Linux Percent", as given by last logged data, and DD means domination day (in YYYY-MM-DD format).

Project D2D DD2D DD CLP Confidence %
Einstein 250.8 -631.3 2009-08-09 37.48 (+2.31) 9.5
MalariaControl 7172.8 +282.8 2028-07-22 12.45 (+0.19) 0.8
POEM 5020.4 +1406.5 2022-08-31 10.05 (+0.26) 1.1
QMC >10k - - 7.91 (+0.03) -
Rosetta >10k - - 7.99 (+0.08) -
SETI >10k - - 7.88 (+0.02) -
Spinhenge >10k - - 3.35 (+0.14) -

As promised, today I'm showing the plots for MalariaControl. In next issue: POEM@home.

Number of hosts percent evolution for MalariaControl (click to enlarge)

Accumulated credit percent evolution for MalariaControl (click to enlarge)

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LWD - October
October 30th 2008

Hey, October almost passed and I didn't write the montly report on LWD. I might make it bimontly, to produce less spam in the blog. You can read an intro for my Linux World Domination project in this May 2008 post.

As usual D2D means "days to domination" (the expected time for Windows/Linux shares to cross, counting from Feb 3, 2008), and DD2D means difference (increase/decrease) in D2D, with respect to last report. CLP means "current Linux Percent", as given by last logged data. The new datum DD means domination day (in YYYY-MM-DD format).

As a new feature, I am now fitting the curves (to predict Windows/Linux crossing) to first degree polynomials, but taking only the last N points so that the coefficient of regression is close to 1 (yes, I am being purposely unclear and arbitrary on this subject).

Project D2D DD2D DD CLP Confidence %
Einstein 882.1 +571.9 2011-03-31 35.17 (+0.27) 37.3
MalariaControl 6890.0 +6268.8 2027-09-10 12.26 (+0.06%) 0.3
POEM 3613.9 - 2018-09-21 9.81 (+0.05%) 0.4
QMC >10k - - 7.88 (+0.0%) -
Rosetta >10k - - 7.91 (+0.11%) -
SETI >10k - - 7.86 (+0.03) -
Spinhenge >10k - - 3.21 (+0.2%) -

OK, the data seems discouraging. The crossing day (DD) seems to be further away every month, instead of closer. Recall however that the only (half) reliable data are the current (and past) percents. All the rest is speculation, and the fits change wildly depending on the function used to make them, and the number of points fit.

Starting with this month's issue, I might post pictures of the evolution plots. Today I'm showing the plots for Einstein@home. Next month: Malaria@home.

Number of hosts percent evolution for Einstein@home (click to enlarge)

Accumulated credit percent evolution for Einstein@home (click to enlarge)

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