The Linux Setup – John Browning, Engadget

I’m always pleasantly surprised when any of the big tech blogs have a Linux guy. John’s done some interesting Linux work for Engadget, which is why I thought he’d make a good interview subject (his Engadget colleague, Terrence O’Brien, was great, too). For the record, John’s another Fuduntu user (Katherine Noyes, was last week), but if you check the date, you’ll see the interview was conducted a few months ago, before I become obsessed with Fuduntu. I think it just goes to show how Fuduntu was hitting a critical mass before the announced shutdown, and how a lot of people are probably anxious for the next iteration of the distro.

You can find more of The Linux Setup here.

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  1. Who are you, and what do you do?

    John Browning. I’m a systems programmer/engineer for a privately held software company that makes statistical software. I also contribute to Engadget.com in my spare time. At my day job I manage high performance clusters/grids running RedHat Enterprise Linux. I’m responsible for creating a lot of tooling and automation, mostly in Perl. I get to invent cool new ways of doing stuff. I’ve been playing with Conary as of late. I’ve been using Linux since I was a tween.

  2. What distribution do you run on your main desktop/laptop?

    Currently running Fuduntu at work and home. Fuduntu is a somewhat Fedora-based distribution with a default GNOME2 desktop environment. Fuduntu is geared for desktop use. I highly recommend folks check it out: http://www.fuduntu.org

  3. What software do you depend upon with this distribution?

    I really like GNOME 2 as a desktop environment. Fubuntu is a great distro that utilizes true and updated GNOME 2. It’s a bit more stable than some of the MATE environments I’ve tried. That’s the main selling point of Fuduntu.

    Other software I use (that you can get on just about any distro):

    1. vim
    2. Steam, ya gotta relax sometimes. Fuduntu has great steam support out of the box (yum -y install steam)
    3. VLC
    4. Chromium
  4. What kind of hardware do you run it on?

    At work: Core i7, 16GB Memory, Nvidia Tesla GPU. Dell brand.
    At home: A rather old homebuild PC AMD Phenom that’s getting upgraded soon. It has 4GB of memory.

  5. What is your ideal Linux setup?

    Core i7 with 8MB Cache, 16GB of DDR3, and latest Nvidia GPU. I have to have dual monitors as well.

  6. Will you share a screenshot of your desktop?

    A screenshot of my home environment:

John Browning's desktop

Interview conducted February 27, 2013


The Linux Setup is a feature where I interview people about their Linux setups. The concept is borrowed, if not outright stolen, from this site. If you’d like to participate, drop me a line.

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