Take a look at what the next generation of Linux desktop looks like on this Linux video.
It uses Compiz and XGL to create a desktop interface that rivals or surpasses the slick look of Mac OS X. Notice the special effects when moving the windows around, and especially the desktop-switching feature, where you can switch between four virtual desktops by spinning them around like they are faces on a cube.
If you want to take Compiz/XGL for a trial run on your own computer you can try the Kororaa live CD.
Check out free-penguin.org — a site that can help you get started on making your own stuffed Tux penguin. See also the Tux badge/button printing development branch of the free-penguin.org site.
There are some photos of the penguins in the free penguin blog.
If you want to know more about the Penguin, click on the image below [Wikipedia].
I found a great article on DesktopLinux.com about a web site where you can try Linux online through your web browser.
If you are using Windows, you can go to this page and follow the instructions. It involves downloading an .exe file so if you want to skip that part you can also do it through a Java applet. If you are using Mac or Linux, or are on Windows and want to use the Java applet method, you can go to FAQ page and follow the instructions there for either Linux or Mac. Choose the option that says "Java applet".
(Note: Most people will already have Java support but if you don't have it you can get it at Java.com.)
It may take a minute or two for Linux to load once you start the Java applet, and it will run quite a bit slower than it would if you had it installed on your computer. It is an interesting demo though and worth checking out if you want to try Linux. It is a regular desktop, similar to the one you might find on Windows, with web browsers, office software, email clients, instant messengers, and much more. The desktop is in German on this demo, but you can still browse through the menus and try the software even if you don't speak German.
Linux Demo Screenshots
Here are some screenshots of the Linux test drive, running on a web browser in Windows XP.
This is the KDE desktop loading:
There are Internet cafes that run Linux on their computers. There are also many Internet cafes that will let you boot from live CDs.
If you run an Internet cafe or are thinking about starting one, Linux is a way for you to reduce costs and to reduce time spent fighting viruses.
There is a free open-source POS system for Internet cafes that runs on Linux (and Windows) computers called Zeiberbude. Also check out the ZoneCD, a Linux live CD that can help you set up a free wifi hotspot in as little as one hour. A section of resources for Internet cafe owners is coming soon.
If you are in Cape Town, South Africa, check out this Internet cafe that runs Debian GNU/Linux, Cafe Erte. There is also Speed Net Club, a Linux-based Internet cafe in Bangkok, Thailand. A worldwide directory of Linux-friendly Internet access points around the world is coming soon!
There is a new book coming soon about Ubuntu Linux. It is called The Official Ubuntu Book and will be released in July. Check out their web site for a free preview chapter.
Ubuntu Linux is probably the best Linux distro for new Linux users to install to their desktops. It is a good Linux distro to put on your laptop, and since is does not easily get viruses it is great for checking your banking online.
"Ubuntu" means "humanity towards others", and Ubuntu Linux is an attempt to bring the concept of Ubuntu to computing.
You can download Ubuntu, or order Ubuntu CDs and they will be shipped to you at no cost. The shipped version of Ubuntu Linux comes with two CDs — one is a live CD so you can try Ubuntu first, and the other is an install CD that will put Ubunu Linux on your hard drive.
Recently, the people at Xara decided to develop a version of Xara Xtreme for Linux as Free Open-Source Software (FOSS) under the GNU GPL. (It looks like the version for Windows is still a commercial product.)
The open-source version of Xara Xtreme for Linux is currently at version 0.5.
The XaraXtreme.org web site says:
Puppy Linux v1.0.9 Community Edition has been released. I was a little disappointed by my trial run this evening since it looks like the Bluefish HTML editor was removed. I am looking forward to the upcoming release of Puppy 2, which is still in the alpha stages.
Puppy Linux is noteworthy because it can run from a DVD and save its settings back to the DVD. Puppy Linux is a great distro that is worth trying.
My favorite version of Puppy Linux is still PizzaPup, which can be found on the list of Puppy Linux sites page. It comes with Firefox instead of Mozilla, and uses the IceWM (windows manager) instead of JWM.