Dangling from a Binary Precipice

Welcome to Tal Liron’s programming and free software blog!

Which Versions of OpenGL/ES Should You Target?
May 22, 2014, 5:37 CDT ·

If you’re developing a cross-platform OpenGL application, or even targeting just a single platform, you will be stuck with trying to decide which among the many, many versions of OpenGL you should support. It’s a high-stake decision: the versions vary so much that it would be a nightmare workload to try to support them all. …

Public Lab with Ubuntu as a Terminal Server
Apr 17, 2014, 2:35 CDT ·

Do you manage a public computer lab? Maintaining a single terminal server is so much easier and cheaper than maintaining individual workstations. …

Using Ubuntu as a Terminal Server
Apr 17, 2014, 0:19 CDT ·

Note that you do not need a dedicated Ubuntu server for this guide. I ran a terminal server just fine using Ubuntu 14.04 or 12.04 running inside VirtualBox. If you do so, just make sure the virtual machine is running with the network adapter in bridged mode, so that it is a full participant in the LAN. …

Faking an Xbox 360 Controller in Linux
Mar 26, 2014, 10:59 CDT ·

So many great Linux games, so little time... …

Disunity Over Unity
Mar 24, 2014, 2:52 CDT ·

Nothing else, in the free and proprietary software worlds, comes close. Windows 8 attempted convergence, but with miserable results. Instead of one unified interface, we got an unwieldy hybrid, with the desktop interface essentially deprecated, despite its being still very, very necessary. Apple might have something up their sleeves, but for now OS X and iOS are very different beasts. Indeed, OS X remains an old-fashioned, clunky realization of the venerable windowed paradigm. Unity doesn’t try to “revolutionize”: it takes what we already know, just organizes it better and streamlines it. …

Using Cairo with OpenGL ES
Mar 23, 2014, 8:03 CDT ·

Unfortunately, there is a pitfall. …

Notes on Compiling Various C Libraries for the Android NDK
Mar 23, 2014, 7:30 CDT ·

It’s not so easy! You can’t just use the “./configure and make” build system most libraries come with. Instead, at the very least you’re going to have to create your own custom “Android.mk”, which lists the .c files you need and sets up gcc correctly. …

Choosing a Programming Language for Multi-platform Game Development
Mar 23, 2014, 3:25 CDT ·

You want to write a game that will run on desktop Linux, Windows, Mac OS X, Android, iOS, SteamOS, Xbox, PlayStation, Wii, and possibly the web? …

OpenGL ES 3.0 vs. OpenGL ES 2.0
Mar 22, 2014, 5:59 CDT ·

OpenGL ES 3.0 is a terrific update to the standard that brings many important desktop OpenGL features to embedded devices. …

Mar 21, 2014, 7:35 CDT ·

Xfce’s only problem is that its technology is a bit old: GTK+2 rather than GTK+3. This causes some (minor) conflicts with newer applications, and divergent themes. You basically need to use themes that come with identical GTK+2 and GTK+3 versions. Sticking with Greybird is thus a good idea. The Xfce project is working on migrating to GTK+3, but it will take a while, and they’re not in any hurry. That’s OK, neither am I. …