April 25, 2019

8 Great Linux Apps Worth Bragging About, part 1 - page 2


  • May 20, 2009
  • By Carla Schroder

Zoneminder, Video Security

Zoneminder is an impressive security application that puts a lot of spendy commercial apps to shame. Use an old PC with a big hard drive as your security digital video recorder, connect any compatible video, IP, wireless, and USB cameras, and you're in business. You can even cobble up a system using cheapo Webcams, though you probably don't want to go too cheap like banks and convenience stores, with their blurry useless systems. (Why do they even bother?) You can have color, sound, motion sensor, and even night vision.

The Zoneminder site is extremely helpful and includes a list of compatible hardware. You can control your cameras over the network and even over the Internet, and you can have Zoneminder send you event notifications. Its feature set is comparable to the high-end commercial systems, and it can be integrated into an X10 home automation system. License: GPL.

Kile, TeX/LaTex IDE

Kile is a slick, useful integrated graphical environment for TeX and LaTex. I'm writing my next book in it and it's a huge timesaver. It has complete functionality on both the command-line and in the GUI, and you can wander back and forth between the two with no problems. It comes with a comprehensive LaTex help reference, and it has some nice tools for managing large projects like a book.

It has a lot of one-click operations such as compilation, convert to PDF, and view PDF. Plus syntax highlighting, error highlighting, and autocompletion. QuickPreview is fast for previewing selected parts of a document when you don't feel like waiting for the whole thing to compile.

KompoZer, WYSIWYG Web Editing

KompoZer is one of the nicest graphical Web-authoring programs on any platform. It supports both page editing and site management, rather like Dreamweaver except it doesn't cost a fortune (free), has FOSS licenses (GPL, LGPL, MPL), and it's fast and stable. You can switch back and forth between editing your pages manually or using the nice GUI without it getting all flustered, and it's pretty easy to learn. You can make forms, tables, templates, and insert images, sound, video. The markup is nice and clean and could teach other similar products a thing or two about clean markup.

KompoZer support a number of language packs, and even has localized user forums.

In part 2 we'll look at some more excellent, boastworthy Linux applications. I encourage everyone who uses and enjoys these to click their donation links and send them a few dollars, because nothing says "Thank You!" like cash money.

Carla Schroder is the author of the Linux Cookbook and the Linux Networking Cookbook (O'Reilly Media), the upcoming "Building a Digital Sound Studio with Audacity" (NoStarch Press), a lifelong book lover, and the managing editor of LinuxPlanet and Linux Today.

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