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To install Google Earth on Linux, simply download the BIN file from the Google Earth Download Page to your desktop.

Next, open up a terminal and head into your Desktop directory:
cd ~/Desktop

Give the BIN file the necessary permissions:
chmod a+x GoogleEarthLinux.bin

Execute the BIN file:

Note that you should not need to use admin priveledges to execute the above command.

The archive should extract as follows:
jonolumb@jonoxps:~/Desktop$ ./GoogleEarthLinux.bin
Verifying archive integrity... All good.
Uncompressing Google Earth for GNU/Linux 4.3.7284.3916..............................................................
loki_setup: Suspect size value for option option
loki_setup: Suspect size value for option option
Installing mimetypes...
Installing desktop menu entries...
Installing desktop icon...

Finally follow the onscreen instructions for the installer and preferably install Google Earth somewhere within your home directory. When the installer is finished you should get a confirmation like this:

Google Earth Setup

Now just hit that “start” button and Google Earth should launch. You can also launch Google Earth from the menu at the top of the screen:
Applications –> Internet –> Google Earth

Change from traditional to simplified characters

I was having trouble changing the character display from traditional to simplified characters on the Besta CD-628. The instructions on their website are vague and state the following:

To change to either one of the style for viewing, you need to proceed to the Chinese manual first. Press “C/E” on the keyboard till you see the Chinese manual. Follow by pressing “Shift” + “Tab” on the keyboard. For some of the device, you just need to press tab.
It best to select the type of format you prefer first. Have fun!

This makes very little sense, if any.

The Solution

Making the most sense as possible from the above, I have solved the problem.

  1. Use the language changing button to change the dictionary’s menu language (english, korean, japanese and chinese). The button to do this is on the far right of the ON/OFF row.
  2. Cycle to the chinese menu, that is, the menu before the english menu.
  3. Now press the tab button once , the screen should refresh and the characters will change from either traditional to simplified or from simplified to traditional
  4. Now, when you perform a search for an english word, you can get the simplified characters rather than the traditional characters.

Hope this helped somebody out there!


An audiophile Revolution

If the Squeezebox 2 and 3 weren’t enough to satisfy even the most avid of audiophiles. The recently announced Slim Devices Transporter will certainly fill the gap. Crammed with all the usual features of the Squeezebox range but with many many more technical features and better sound quality, the Transporter is set to revolutionise the audiophile market. Of course, you will still be running your toy on the familiar software that is ‘Slim Server‘.Here’s what they say on the slimdevices website:

Feel Your Music
The new TransNav™ controller uses dynamic tactile feedback to provide fast access to any song even in the largest music collection. The sleek, backlit, infrared remote and dual fluorescent displays make it easy to use from anywhere in the room.

Quality Connectors
Transporter’s back panel features a complete set of professional-grade connectors, including both balanced and unbalanced signals for its analog and digital interfaces.

Astounding Analog
The AK4396 “Miracle DAC” was chosen for its high dynamic range and low distortion. Its low out-of-band noise allows for the use of low-order output filters with higher cutoffs, resulting in preservation of phase and reduced distortion in the audible band. This extraordinary accuracy at higher frequencies allows Transporter to resolve the exact staging of instruments and the finest details of any recording. In addition, Transporter’s digital inputs allow its built-in DAC to be used with other sources.

Accurate Digital
Transporter’s digital path is not only “bit perfect”, but also extremely accurate in timing precision. Clock signals in Transporter are handled not as ones and zeroes, but as precision analog signals. Specialized crystal oscillators, careful clock management, and linear-regulated logic supplies ensure the lowest possible jitter throughout the system.

Clean Power
Transporter’s DAC and output amplifiers are powered by Super Regulators, based on the legendary design by Walt Jung. These regulators offer lower output impedance, faster response, and better noise rejection than standard three-terminal regulators. The result is an incredibly natural sound, with a pitch-black background and a shocking level of detail.

Transporter is the network music player audiophiles have been waiting for.


Slim Devices… The Future

Only a few months ago, people were criticising Slim Devices for their lack of development and were questioning their future, suspecting poor sales. Now, things have certainly changed. The company has brought out two new products in less than a year, both unique. The Transporter is the First Network Music Player designed exclusively for the audiophile community and such an investment may suggest that things are going rather well for the company. Slim Devices have also been investing heavily in partnership deals with ReadyNAS (to produce The Infrant) and their combination with the American Music Giant ‘Pandora‘ has proved very popular.

Make your Orders Now

With the rather ominous price tag of $1,999 it certainly isn’t for everybody but if you do have that sort of money then the Transporter is available on pre-order from the Slim Devices website.

Squeezebox 2

May 17th, 2006

The Squeezebox 2 is a network music player. To put it simply, it allows you to play the music on your computer on a hi-fi, anywhere in your house, wirelessly! Interested? Read on…


Give up your CD collection

The squeezebox gives you easy access to your music via a friendly remote control. Digital music on your computer is great but wouldn’t it be so much easier if you could play it through your main hi-fi without cables trailing everywhere? Wouldn’t it be great if you didn’t have to change the CD in your CD player very half an hour?
With the Squeezebox, all you have to do is rip your existing CD collection to your computers hard drive and you will never have to touch a CD again. Ever!

Great Quality Sound

Squeezebox features a high fidelity 24-bit Burr-Brown DAC, legendary in the audiophile community for their clean output and ultra-low distortion characteristics. Digital optical, coax, and analog connectors can plug into any home theater, stereo or amplified speakers. Basically, the squeezebox will connect to pretty much any soundsystem.

And its all wireless!

The player contains built-in support for true 802.11g and advanced lossless compression technologies. This means you can put your player three times as far away from your wireless network as usual and still get your music. If you don’t have a wireless network, don’t worry, the Squeezebox also has an ethernet port so you can plug it into your LAN should you need to. Even better, the Squeezebox can also act as a wireless bridge. Any wired device that you plug into it will have instant access to your network or the internet. All this with very little to setup.

The Software

To get your player working, you will need to download the free, Open Source software from the website. Available for Windows, Mac, Linux and on other operating systems, Slimserver is very easy to install. Once installed, simply open your web browser, type in the address of your Slimserver and you can change all the necessary settings through a user-friendly web interface. After telling the computer where your music is stored, Slimserver will find all your files and organise them for you. All that is left- plug your Squeezebox in! Of course, there are many fine tuned settings that you can play with to streamline your player.

Lots of formats

This isn’t just an MP3 player. The squeezebox also plays WMA, FLAC, AAC and Ogg Vorbis files. There are even plugins available that will let you listen to other formats should you wish.

Multiple Squeezeboxes?

Should you wish to (and if you can afford it), you can install multiple Squeezeboxes around the house. You can get them to play music independantly, all from one computer, or you can get them all to synchronize. Brilliant for that house party you’re having!

Beautiful Design

The Squeezebox is a slick accessory. Apart from it being compact, the Squeezebox boasts a massive, bright Vacuum Fluorescent Display. This lets you find out what you are listening to from the other side of the room with ease. Furthermore, due to the high resolution screen, the Squeezebox can display a number of attractive visualisations along with the music. This is a must have for your lounge. Sexy!

Easy Access

The Squeezebox itself has absolutely no buttons on its smooth body. Everything is done via a user-friendly remote control. Browsing the menus on the Squeezebox’s screen is a pleasure and even the least technologically minded person can get along with the interface. You can browse your music by Artist, Album, Genre and Year and can quickly build up playlists which can be saved for later listening. You can even search your music using the numerical pad on the remote. Text entry is exactly the same as that used on a mobile phone. What could be simpler? If you dont want to use the remote control, you can always login to the server through your web browser and tell the player what music you would like. This can be great fun if you are at the other side of the house- try turning up the volume whilst somebody else is in the lounge. You can really spook people out!


Another nifty feature of the Squeezebox is Squeezenetwork. This is an online service that allows you to listen to internet radio streams with your Squeezebox without having your computer switched on. This is one of the most unique features of this player and is truly superb. For one thing, it gives you access to thousands of stations that a conventional radio simply could not provide. Great for foreign language learning- you can listen to the French News every morning before getting up.


This being an Open Source project, there are hundreds of plugins out there to provide extra functionality. You can view your favourite RSS feeds on the players screen, play tetris, shutdown your computer remotely. The list really does just go on!

Try it out

Interested but you don’t want to make the investment yet? There is an answer.
Download and install the Slimserver software then get Softsqueeze, a software version of the Squeezebox. This little program emulates the Squeezebox onto your computer screen, giving you all the functionality of the real thing so that you can try before you buy.

The Verdict

This little gadget has changed my life. Every morning, I wake up to the sound of French Radio. Whenever I am juggling in the lounge, I bring along my Squeezebox to provide the music. All of this was not possible without this device. I would now find it very hard to live without it.
Possibly the best purchase I have ever made.

Click on a photo to enlarge it. Use the arrow keys to browse through the photos.

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