Friday, January 25, 2008

A Couple of Things About Linux

Here's a list of a few things that relate to Linux...

1.) Linux changes constantly. Therefore Linux becomes easier, better, more cutting edge, and more fantastic with every iteration of upgrade.

Take Ubuntu for instance, Canonical promises a new desktop and server release every six months. So what might not have worked in 7.04 is likely to work in 7.10, and so forth for every upgrade. I have a Dell Inspiron 2650* laptop with a Netgear PCMCIA network adapter, for which I had to load the beastly (overstatement here) ndiswrapper to make it work in Ubuntu 7.04, the wireless then worked fine. But then like magic, when I reloaded Ubuntu 7.10 in an upgrade, the Netgear PCMCIA network adapter worked perfectly from the LiveCD through installation. What happened was that someone simply posted the problem to and then the devs fixed it, which leads me to my second point.

2.) The more people that use and believe in Linux, the better it gets. Here's the cycle, awesome people develop and make Linux work, the user masses download the Linux and use it, the users squawk about problems they have with the Linux, then the devs fix the Linux and release the next version very rapidly. It's a model that's based on making the OS better (as opposed to other Operating Systems that are driven most by making more profit for the business people than actually making a better product and faster), which leads me on to my next point.

3.) If you adopt Linux, it will change your life. Use and realize Linux, I mean really give it a thorough shot, and a little switch in your mind will actuate and a light will turn on (you may even hear some glass shattering). When the light turns on, you will experience a change in the way that you view and use technology. It is then that you will realize how powerful technology is, as a means for enabling us all as humankind. At this point you might just get a little irritated by the way that certain overly-powerful companies are trying to limit your technological brain. Regardless of your reaction, the change will eventually set in and nothing will be the same (technology wise) the way you know it.

These are only a few points for making what is considered (inaccurately in my view) a big change, but believe me, give Linux a sincere and honest try and you will discover what I'm talking about.

So now we just have to get software companies and the media to actually acknowledge Linux and the hardware providers to include it and support it....I aim to do just that. Join me.

*As for newer hardware, I recently booted up a brand-new hp 6510b (little computer that competes with vaio) laptop at work with the Ubuntu 7.10 LiveCD and everything including wireless, sound, etc. worked perfectly without further modification.

Shannon VanWagner

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Petition for porting World of Warcraft to Linux

In the interest of getting Blizzard to make a Linux version of World of Warcraft I have done two things:

1.) I created an online petition to convince the makers of World of Warcraft to port their software to Linux (see petition text below). Please consider add your name to the petition!!

Click here to access the petition
Update (12-31-08) Please also sign the duplicate petition here.
----------------------start of petition text-----------------------------
To: Blizzard Game Company

Dear Makers of the game World of Warcraft (WoW):

As Linux users, time and time again we are faced with being "left out" in terms of being able to enjoy certain online games (and other software) the same way that other users do (such as those using Windows). This is a shame because there are actually many more users of Linux out there than the media and most technical sources acknowledge and we deserve to have voice.

The purpose of this petition is to provide for you a visual representation of the popularity of the idea of having World of Warcraft being ported to the Linux operating system, and more importantly, to encourage your company to actually provide a Linux version of the game of World of Warcraft for Linux users everywhere to enjoy.

Also, because Linux is becoming more and more popular everyday, please consider including Linux as part of your larger business model in terms of software offerings moving forward.

Optimally, there would be a version of WoW available for the major versions of Linux and other *nix systems (i.e., Red Hat/CentOS/Fedora, SUSE, Mandriva, Slackware, Ubuntu, Debian, FreeBSD, PC-BSD, and Solaris). However, the porting WoW to any of the most popular Linux distros would be a good starting point.

Please review the list of supporting petitioners and consider porting World of Warcraft to Linux for us.

In the spirit of Interoperability, we Thank You in advance for helping to show how popular and worthy the Linux operating system really is!

If you have comments or questions concerning this petition, please direct them to:


The Undersigned

----------------------end of petition text-----------------------------

I sent the following email to Blizzard's tech support to ask them if they are working on a Linux version of WoW and to encourage them to do so (see the email text below):
----------------------start of text-----------------------------

Dear Prestigious GameMakers at;

I was wondering if you are planning to make a Linux version of World of Warcraft(WoW) for all the Linux users out there that would like to play your game online without having to jerry-rig it in order to make it work.

If it's a matter of popularity, could you mention how many potential Linux users it would take for you to consider porting the WoW game to Linux?

I have created an online petition to get this idea rolling, see
The petition has just started so there will not likely be many signatures yet but please check back periodically to see the popularity grow.

I will also be submitting the petition to many online sources such as,,, and others to get the word out.

Please consider porting WoW to Linux so that the masses can enjoy!


Shannon VanWagner
----------------------end of text-----------------------------

So if this works, I'll be making a lot of other petitions for other software to try and get more support for Linux. Let's hit them with lot's of petition names!!

I think it's important that we Linux users let software companies everywhere know that we want to have all types of software ported to Linux.

Note: Blizzard and World of Warcraft are registered names of their respective owners.