Instalación y Configuración del Android SDK y Eclipse en openSUSE 12.1

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Puedes entrar a la wiki y ver este artículo. :p


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Instalación y Configuración de Ruby on Rails en openSUSE 12.1

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Puedes entrar a la wiki y ver este artículo! 😉



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Instalación y Configuración de JDK/JEE SDK/Netbeans en openSUSE 12.1

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Puedes entrar a la wiki y ver este post alli! 🙂

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Instalación openSUSE 12.1

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Puedes entrar a la wiki y ver como instalar openSUSE 12.1 :).

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Why Free Software? Why Gnu/Linux? Why openSUSE?

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Software is any collection of computer programs and related data that provide instructions to computers of the tasks we want to achieve. As a software engineer/programmer/developer, software represents the ultimate construction material for many of us. I’ve always loved to compare the creation of software with Alchemy, an ancient tradition in which you are able to transform base metals into noble metals, with the difference the in software creation you are able to transform the work and knowledge of many brilliant people(applied sciences, theories, mathematic models, programming languages), your vision  and the existent hardware to create something intangible that produces tangible results for someone. Like stated in the preface of handbook of software architechture:

“In the context of that labor, software is perhaps the ultimate building material: it springs from pure thought and is intrinsically malleable, yet it can be made manifest in our hardware systems, limited only by our vision (and by certain immutable laws of physics and software). ”

Software has also the following interesting characteristics:

  • Construction, “software development has been, is, and will likely remain fundamentally hard. To that end, the entire history of software engineering is one of rising levels of abstraction, for abstraction is the primary way we as humans deal with complexity.” Again, another phrase from the handbook of software architechture.
  • Reproduction, whenever you finish developing any type of application, for any kind of device, and you want to deploy it on another similar device, what do you do? Do you have to start again the creation of the software? Do you have to rethink how to create the software? Of course not, once you have created, it takes only a process of copying to reuse it on another similar device(assuming the conditions in which the software runs are identical).
  • Nowadays an essential element, “Society runs on software” said by Bjarne Stroutstrup ,risponsable for the existence of C++, makes a valid statement. Nowadays software has become part of our daily basis, it’s an indispensable tool for many tasks and problems we want to solve.

This being said, now we talk about Free Software.


Why Free Software?

Free Software, as stated by Richard Stallman(creator of the free software movement) in the GNU Manifesto, is any software that complies with the following freedoms:

  • Freedom to use the software with any purpose
  • Freedom to study how the software works
  • Freedom to share copies of the software
  • Freedom to improve the software and make those improvements accesible to others

Free software represents a light of hope in a world where money and greed take the lead, I think this movement represents an ethical path to a better way of sharing knowledge with others. So that would answer the “Why Free Software?”.


Why GNU/Linux?

GNU/Linux is an operating system formed by the tools developed by the GNU project like gcc, gdb, emacs, gmake and finally the Linux kernel developed by Linus Torvalds. Although it is commonly named “Linux” the right way to refer to it would be GNU/Linux, this operating system worked as the base for many derivatives or distributions that exist nowadays like debian, slackware, red hat, SUSE, mandriva and many more. This distributions were able to exist thanks to the freedoms contained within GNU/Linux.

Another well known operating systems like MS Windows or Mac OS are characterized by their user friendliness, easiness to setup, popularity but also they are very well known because of their restrictive licenses. Both of them come with an EULA license, which governs the way you can use their software according to their creators. You are not the owner of the operating system you merely have a very limited permission to use it. And that’s the beginning of a great trouble. What happens if you have the software necessary to help a friend with his tasks? This licenses doesn’t allow you to share it with others. Would you prefer to respect the license and deny it to your friend? Would you like to lose a friend? Or, would you lend it and break the agreement?

There is the dilemma, privative software like MS Windows and Mac OS,and also many other software that runs in both of them, cause this type of decision between doing what’s legal and what’s Ilegal, that is basically sharing with others. Mac and Windows are designed to be user friendly, that’s their business, unlike GNU/Linux, that is the effort of many volunteers around the world, so it might be a bittersweet experience for users, but if you surpass this initial experience you win something greater : freedom , and I can assure you there is no coming back!

This answers the “Why GNU/Linux?”. Because thanks to it’s freedom, it even encourages to share it with others, so there is no dilemma in here.


Why openSUSE?

openSUSE is a linux distribution that comes from the SUSE Linux distribution that appeared in the early 1994, from then, SUSE was bought by Novell in 2003. Later on in 2005 Novell decided to open the development process of a new project called openSUSE project, which is developed and promoted by the openSUSE community directed by an elected board and with the support of Novell.

In 2006 Novell made an agreement with Microsoft to improve the interoperability of SUSE and MS Windows, agreement that came along with a patent cross licensing that was considered controversial by the Free Software Community. And later on in 2010 Novell was acquired by the Attachmate group, anouncing that Novell and SUSE are going to become two separate entities. Respecting to openSUSE Attachmate has made the following statement:

“As noted in the agreement announced today, Attachmate plans to operate SUSE as a stand-alone business unit after the transaction closes. If this transaction closes, then after closing, Attachmate Corporation anticipates no change to the relationship between the SUSE business and the openSUSE project as a result of this transaction.”

Several opinions state that the division of SUSE from Novell, means that openSUSE is going to have a greater relevance in part because of the improvements that are pushed back from openSUSE to SUSE. This would answer the “Why not openSUSE?” question… xD.

Now, “Why openSUSE?”:

  • openSUSE’s predecessor SUSE , is known as the oldest commercial GNU/Linux distribution. So there is a lot of experience that has been passed down to openSUSE.
  • openSUSE is a community project that is directed by an elected board. This board is elected by the “members ” of the openSUSE community, to become a member you must pass a standard process in which you have to demonstrate that you have truely collaborated to the project. I’m an ambassador for openSUSE project and I don’t consider myself ready to become a member… xD, to give an idea.
  • openSUSE is very well known as one of the best KDE distribution, because of the support openSUSE has given to this desktop.
  • openSUSE’s community is a very active community launching two new releases per year, the last one 12.1 was released in time, and the work for the new version has started.
  • openSUSE has financial support from sponsors, especially from Novell, why is this a plus, that’s because economical support makes things move.
  • openSUSE has been involved in several innovation projects like OBS and SUSEstudio, the last one is really awesome and I always enjoy talking about how SUSEstudio is changing  the way desktop and server applications are being deployed.
  • YaST, is a great aid for many sysadmins, with YaST I was able to setup Samba/Ldap/Xen/KVM/Firewall/Software Management with just some clicks. It’s a great administration tool, the best one I’ve seen around in the GNU/Linux distros, in my very subjective opinion.
  • Software Management, openSUSE manages software dependencies through YaST but counts with alternatives to install software like zypper , a command line based software manager or through the “1-click-installs“,which are available at, you just have to search for the software you need and all you need to do is follow the assistant’s step to complete the installation. A great tool when giving openSUSE support.
  • And finally, openSUSE might not be as “free” as Debian, as popular as Ubuntu or as optimized like Gentoo/ArchLinux, but it has a fairly good balance between all those characteristics and most importantly it is still Free Software! 🙂

p.d.: More info at and

p.d.2:Foto tomada por Sebastian Oliva liberadas bajo licencia Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 Guatemala License



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Insights about Startup Chile

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The Startup Chile program as depicted on their website(startupchile), is a program of the Chilean Government designed to “attract foreign, high-potential entrepreneurs to come to Chile to bootstrap their businesses with the end goal of converting Chile into the innovation and entrepreneurial hub of Latin America“[1]. This program started on 2010, with a pilot program in which they brought 23 teams from different countries to work on their projects. Projects that where chosen by Silicon Valley experts and a Chilean innovation board, this projects must have a global approach and a worldwide potential to apply and be chosen to receive an initial fund of $40,000. By 2011 a second group has come with 110 new teams.  In this batch, there is one called sqmos, the one I work for.

Everything you have read is available at their website, now lets talk about some more specific details:

1. Chile (Country/Economy/Society)

Chile is a country in South America that borders with Peru in the north, Argentina to the east and the Pacific Ocean to the West. Unlike the countries in which I have lived (Honduras and Guatemala), probably you would have a better idea of where Chile is located, and you probably know at least something about it. Most of the time we have to explain where Central America is, but it’s ok we don’t blame anyone, we are indeed very small countries in many ways. Now, returning to Chile, here are some amazing indicators that can give you a better idea of the Chilean context:

  • Fixed telephone lines: 68%
  • Mobile telephones (cellphones): 113% in 2010
  • Personal computers: 69,6%
  • Internet Users: 88,9%
  • Broadband Internet: 17.3%
  • Television sets: 96,8%
  • Cable or satellite TV (in homes): 86,8%
  • Radios: 93,4%
  • Automobiles: 69,6%
  • Scientists available: 985 scientists / 1 million hab.
  • Expenses in I+D (% of PIB): 0,7%

If you want to checkout some more detailed indicators and rankings you can visit this wikipedia link. If you watch them closely you can see that Chile, in the Latin America rankings, ranks first in many categories. Some of them like “Best Countries for Business” by Forbes in 2010 and also the “IT industry competitiveness index 2008” by the Economist Intelligence Unit/Business Software Alliance(BSA, company in charge of suing anyone who uses illegal software back in Guatemala, but this is a topic for another article).

Another important indicator is the  education part, in this area Chile ranks second in South America based in this reference. Nevertheless, by this time,  there have been some months since the protests began in Chile, concerning the education topic. Talking with some locals, they have told us that there are many private organizations that are getting a lot of profit from the education provided in the country, they say that for the time you get your college degree you also have a reasonable debt to cover with local banks.

Talking with some more locals, some of them had a different opinion, they told us we were very lucky to come to Chile in such an important moment in the country’s history. They’ve told us that never before there had been such a movement to change and promote a better education for Chile’s future generations. It’s a very worthy cause, but I’m afraid we can’t choose sides for we are foreigns in this country, but we hope everything turns out for good.

2. Entrepreneurship and Innovation at StartupChile

Many institutions in Chile have it clear, they have to power up the good ideas of many entrepreneurs that are appearing in Chile. Universities, private organizations and the government of Chile are making their effort to provide a healthy environment for any student or entrepreneur who has the will and passion to carry on their bright ideas. The goal is to create or have a Latin American Sillicon Valley, where companies worth billion of dollars are located in a very small area.

Nevertheless there are some conditions required to imitate Silicon Valley, and one of them is that investors, entrepreneurs, and organizations must have a global approach. There may be great ideas out there in the need of investment, but investors with a local approach won’t be able to recognize the potential behind that idea, due to their limited vision, and therefore that idea would get stalled.

So this is where Startup Chile comes in, and what they are doing is importing entrepreneurs from all around the globe. Entrepreneurs with projects and ideas with global approach, and expose them to the local networks of investors and organizations, this exchange of experiences is going to affect the local entrepreneurs/investors/organizations in many ways, opening their sights to a more global approach, which comes with more challenges and risks for them to take.

One last important issue, is that all the foreign entrepreneurs are going to feel very grateful with Chile, for giving them the opportunity to develop their idea in their country, making them to want to stay and try to make the idea possible in Chile.  As a participant in this year, I can confirm that feeling.


3. Challenges and Risks

As part of one of the 2011 teams, sqmos(our team), we have been learning a lot from the other teams and projects.  There are many bright ideas that attended the call this year. A lot of interesting people, people with whom we sympathize, for their goals are no different from ours and their challenges, also, are no different from ours.

Not everything is rainbow and butterflies, there are many decisions to make and work to do. Nowadays software is the gate to many innovations. Software springs from pure thought , but from where does innovation springs? Pressure? Determination? Hunger for success? Competitiveness? Garage programmers?

We are here for a period of 6 months to try and find out.

4. Wrapping it all together

Finishing this article , we must say that we always have to remember that it takes a lot of hard work and persistence to build something worthy, no matter what it is, and it is also important to have people that share our same ideals and goals, for success alone is not worthy if you have no one to share it with.  Like one of our mentors Vivek Wadwa at startup Chile says “the more you fail the more closer you are to success”, so failing is hard and you don’t want it, but sometimes its a necessary medicine for someone who needs it.

Finishing this article, I share a small message that my team partners read and told me about, you can use it to hire people for your team:

Men(women) Wanted for hazardous journey. Small wages, bitter cold, long months of complete darkness, constant danger, safe return doubtful. Honor and recognition in case of success.”  Written by Ernest Shackleton, when hiring people for the Antarctic Exploration, he became a role model of leadership , by guiding his team in very extreme conditions. Although he worked hard, he had little material reward in his life, but he is remembered for his determination.  He also received aid from the Chilean Government, they provided him a rescue boat one time. Curious coincidence.




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1 Comment

Greetings to all, welcome to this simple blog/site in which I’ll try to share some small “knowledge” on several themes. I’m a spanish speaking person, but I write mostly in english, because that way this may be of help for a more diverse audience. The reason of this blog/site is to learn from the interaction with others, rather than trying to “teach”. The best way to learn any topic is to practice it during enough time, and sharing it with others is of great help for me.  This way if I’m mistaken, I hope you gladly let me know, so please feel free to give any feedback ;).

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