Kindle Touch landscape mode – Ubuntu / Linux fix (my solution…)

December 5, 2011

I got my Kindle Touch Wi-Fi with special offers last week. More info on this nice device at the Amazon Kindle Touch page, the Kindle Wikipedia article page, and of course Google searches will do you lots of good.

Granted I’m busy so I’ve not been able to maximize its use yet but I’ve been able to play with it and organize my books and personal documents already. Overall I like the look and feel and functionality of the Kindle Touch (or KT) and I believe you can search reviews with Google, including this good Kindle Touch review by CNET. For reading novels in the native formats accepted by Kindle (e.g. .mobi, .azw files) the pinch-and-zoom as well as the swipe (or just tap) to go to the next/previous page, among other features of KT, are great.

As a researcher though I have lots of PDFs to read, many of which have text formatted in mathematical notation (such as those made using LaTeX). Of course KT can handle PDFs, and even though you could pinch-and-zoom as well as swipe to pan through a page or through pages, reading a PDF  file this way can be really cumbersome especially since the default orientation of viewing in KT is portrait mode. It would be nice if we can rotate the KT to landscape orientation to better read PDF files. However, according to an official statement from a Kindle Customer Support representative, landscape mode is not available on KT. Bummer. I immediately emailed Amazon at kindle-feedback@amazon.com (all of you should! :-) ) asking for future software/firmware update to automatically change orientation in KT, and when might this be.

Right now, a sort of “hack” is possible to allow Ubuntu (and other GNU/Linux distros) users like myself to read our PDF books and files in landscape mode in the KT. An answer is to use the pdftk commandline tool which I made a post about some time ago. You can also refer to the man page of your GNU/Linux distribution after installing pdftk. In Ubuntu, a simple and quick apt-get or Synaptic installation should  do the installation job for you (check my post about pdftk above, or search this blog). The “hack” goes like so:

Say you have a PDF file named mydoc.pdf. To rotate the entire PDF file (assuming it is in portrait orientation by default) 90 degrees counterclockwise (so now the mydoc.pdf is now in landscape orientation) fire up a terminal and type:

$ pdftk mydoc.pdf cat 1-endW output tmp.pdf

Where tmp.pdf is the desired output filename of the re-oriented (now in landscape) version of mydoc.pdf. Now you can copy or email the file tmp.pdf to your KT and read your PDF file in landscape mode. :) I’ve yet to check if pdftk works in Mac OS (I won’t be surprised if it does) though I believe this pseudo-hack might turn out to be more “graphical” or point-and-click in nature than my commandline solution above. :) A user from the Amazon KT support page above mentioned using a professional version of Adobe reader to graphically do this, perhaps in Windows and in Mac OS as well. I’d appreciate if somebody would post a link on how to do this graphically in Ubuntu (GNU/Linux), Mac OS, and even in….Windows… ;) :)

Happy hacking and Kindling. :)

Find files before/after/in between specific dates

February 14, 2011

Hello folks. \\//,

Well here I am, reading a technical research paper on membrane computing and Petri nets when I decided to download some of the reference materials, conference/journal technical papers, of the paper I’m currently reading.  So I download the reference materials from IEEE Xplore, plus other non-reference materials but still related to the topic I’m reading.

Eventually, I download around 10 PDF files, with filenames made up of purely integers and of course the .pdf extension. Problem is, I’m too lazy (not that much really, I just don’t want to keep doing this manually over and over) to specify each PDF filename, then add them to a compressed archive (this case a RAR file) and then send them to another machine or person or account of mine for archiving.  Essentially, I just want that: to get those PDF files I recently downloaded for this specific topic I’m currently in, not include other PDF files in the same directory, and then compress them into a single RAR file.

How to go over doing this?

Luckily there are for loops and the nifty find command in *nixes like my Ubuntu box. :) So what I simply do is

for i in `find . -type f -cnewer startdate ! -cnewer enddate`; do rar a myrarfile.rar $i; done

which means given 2 reference points, files startdate and enddate, I loop over all files in between the modification times of these two files and then add them to the RAR file myrarfile.rar.

Presto. Problem solved, learned something new. Now, back to reading research papers. :)

\\//,

Reference/s:

http://unixhelp.ed.ac.uk/CGI/man-cgi?find

SVN over HTTP

January 31, 2011

Hello there true believers, been a while since I’ve written something here.


A quick FYI on those wanting to use SVN but are restricted to use it from within a network with a proxy.
If you try using SVN over HTTP, it most likely won’t work by default since SVN uses a different network port (usually 3690 for *nixes) and HTTP proxies by default use 80 or 8080 as their ports.
If you try checking out or updating or committing to/from an SVN repo by default, you’ll run into a problem saying SVN couldn’t connect. Uh oh spaghetti-oh. :-)
In my Ubuntu 10.04 machine, what I do is open (with sudo/root properties) the file:

/etc/subversion/servers

and uncomment (or add, if the following are not present) these parameters:

http-proxy-host = yourproxy.com
http-proxy-port = port

e.g.

http-proxy-host = 10.10.10.10
http-proxy-port = 8080

I save the file, then try SVN again. Voila. I’m back to coding again. :-)

Reference/s:

Virtualbox shared folder access: Mac OS X host with Ubuntu 10.04 as guest

November 13, 2010

Whew. It’s been a while since I’ve done anything here. :) Now time to do some geeky blogging (and so much more soon) once again mis amigos y amigas. :)

Tech specs of the setup

(Host)

Mac OS X Version 10.5.8

$uname -a

Darwin theorylabs-P-System-iMac.local 9.8.0 Darwin Kernel Version 9.8.0: Wed Jul 15 16:55:01 PDT 2009; root:xnu-1228.15.4~1/RELEASE_I386 i386

VirtualBox (non-OSE version, but still free) Version 3.2.10 r66523

(Guest)

Ubuntu Lucid Lynx 10.04 32bit

Setting it up

Essentially just add a shared folder using VirtualBox, whether a VM is running or not. In the guest OS, create a directory where you want your host OS’s files to be mounted (with R or R/W permissions).

Then in the guest OS make sure that the guest additions are successfully installed already. This step is easily and quickly done by mounting the ISO into the guest OS, then allowing Ubuntu 10.04 to detect an autorun script. It will warn you that the running of certain scripts can pose a threat to your system, so we go ahead knowing that the ISO is from Oracle. Otherwise, you can run the script by double-clicking on it or using a terminal.

Once the guest additions have been successfully installed, the following command should mount the host OS’s folder onto the newly created folder in the guest OS which we just created from above:

sudo mount -t vboxsf virtualbox_shared_folder_name guest_os_directory_path

Where virtualbox_shared_folder_name is the name of your host OS’s folder which you entered in the VirtualBox shared folder setting, which may not necessarily be the real directory name of the directory you want to share from your Mac OS X.  guest_os_directory_path is the newly created folder from above awhile ago.

A note on the virtualbox forums, several users say that changing one’s directory in the guest OS to / (root directory of the filesystem) helps, although this wasn’t the case for me.

Hope that helps ladies and gents. Questions are very much welcome. :)

Reference/s:

A Quick Scientific Limerick :)

March 30, 2010

Here’s one way I can show my  love for science and poetry. :) I’m quite sure a lot of you guys out there can also think of your own science, math, or any other limerick under the freethinking Sun no? :)

There was a guy named Schroedinger

who was quite an exceptional thinker

He posited that

there’d either be a dead or live cat

Even before you laid down a finger

(to appreciate my limerick even more, here’s a good reference on Schroedinger’s cat) :)

And I don’t want to leave another favorite subject of mine (among others) without its own limerick. ;)

Newton discovered calculus

So did Leibniz, plus its use

There was some dispute

on who’d bring the discoverer’s loot

But Isaac won over a ruse.

(to appreciate my math limerick, please see the Wikipedia article on the Calculus discovery controversy) :)

My list of some of the most romantic sci-fi lines

February 14, 2010

Okay guys, this is, among other things, a work/list in progress, so please feel free to suggest others I might have missed/forgotten. I’ve very limited time but I managed to draw these out of the top of my head. In no particular order, here they are:

“John Connor gave me a picture of you once. I didn’t know why at the time. It was very old – torn, faded. You were young like you are now. You seemed just a little sad. I used to always wonder what you were thinking at that moment. I memorized every line, every curve. I came across time for you Sarah. I love you; I always have”

-Kyle Reese, father of John Connor, talking to Sarah Connor in the movie Terminator (1984) while hiding form the terminator. Aaww. That is so romantic,  moving across time (and space) to be with the one you love. :D

Mulder’s email to Scully:

I’ve resisted contacting you for reasons I know you continue to appreciate. But, to be honest, some unexpected dimensions of my new life are eating away at any resolve I have left. I’m lonely, Dana, uncertain of my ability to live like this. I want to come home. To you, and to William.

Scully’s reply to Mulder’s email afterwards:

I hold no hope you can respond to this. Or that it reaches you. I only hope that you are alive.

I cannot help believing that you jumped off that train because you knew what I now know – that these “super-soldiers,” if that’s what they are, can in fact be destroyed. That the key to their destruction lies in the iron compound at that quarry.

I am scared for you, Mulder. And for William. The forces against us are unrelenting. But so is my determination. To see you again. To regain the comfort and safety we shared for so brief a time.

Until then, I remain forever yours… Dana

- In ‘The X-Files’ season 9 episode, ‘Trust No 1″. Mulder is separated for a time from Scully and their son, because if he hadn’t, he would be putting Scully and their son in danger. Aaww. Sniff sniff. :)

Just remember…no matter what happens…I’ll always love you. ALWAYS.

- Superman to Lois Lane, before finally dying at the hands of the monster Doomsday, in Superman #75  (1993). The line really isn’t something new, but the situation and the overall atmosphere made it really special in my opinion.

So there you go sci-fi buffs, geeks, and nerds. Happy Valentine’s day. :D

Short review on ‘The Big Bang Theory’ episode ‘The Einstein Approximation’

February 3, 2010

Warning: For those who haven’t seen this episode, spoiler alert!

This is the first, and hopefully won’t be the last, of a series of short reviews I’ll try doing each week for ‘The Big Bang Theory’.

This week The Big Bang Theory (TBBT) episode ‘The Einstein Approximation’ came out,  and is the 14th episode of the show’s 3rd season.
Let me just start this quick and short review of the episode by further stating what the guys there and I have in common, apart from the quite obvious facts that we’re all geeks/nerds by heart.
Even before TBBT, I’ve admired and idolized Einstein myself, because of his great mental feats (which were of course, backed up by other physical theories and experiments at his time). Great because by just the power of his mind Einstein was able to revolutionize our lives and the 20th century, paving ways for faster transportation, not to mention telecommunication and computing, which drove and is still driving the information revolution today. And of course, so much more benefits which we more or less take for granted in our daily lives. In fact, Einstein is oftentimes synonymous with the word ‘genius’.
Einstein was also very much interested in philosophy and politics, not just physics. He’s written several books, articles, letters to people outside the scientific community. He also has a quirky sense of humor, as seen from this  picture of him. At first I thought this photo of Einstein was edited. But as it turns out it was really him, tongue hanging out and all. :) It was at the time he was making fun of people taking pictures of him. Great stuff.

Silly Einstein
Of course Einstein is not without criticisms. Great and accomplished a scientist he maybe, history tells us he left much to be desired when it came to being a father or a husband.

Now, back to the episode review of TBBT. At this point I shall establish a partially objective, partially subjective point system of each episode based on the earlier 2 seasons (which I have watched at least 2 times…).
Let me just start off by saying this is a classic Sheldon episode, which is great in itself. Again we expected lots of ‘weird’ humor: Sheldon’s ability to complicate relatively simple things, as well as him belittling his friends, most noticeably Penny. Hilarious stuff once again. Bravo to TBBT production team.
Not a lot of scifi or comic book references were made though. But lines such as:

Howard: How long has he been stuck? (referring to Sheldon)
Leonard: Umm…intellectually about 30 hours, emotionally about 29 years.

And

Howard: Have you tried rebooting him? (referring to Sheldon)
Leonard: No I think it’s a firmware problem.

Are classics. :)

The part where Leonard and Sheldon were arguing inside the ‘ball play room’, with Sheldon going ‘bazinga’ everytime, was also hilarious.

Sheldon, and of course the rest of ‘the guys’ are fans of Einstein no doubt. Sheldon of course thinks he’s at the same level with Einstein so he tries to do what Einstein did in order to come at the epiphany that is the special theory of relativity: to work for a menial job so he can occupy his basal ganglia with a routine task so he can apparently free his pre-frontal cortex to solve his physics problem.

Another classic moment in this episode is the guest starring of Yeardley Smith, the not so well known voice actor behind the famous cartoon character Lisa Simpson (yes, in The Simpsons fame). Absolutely entertaining piece of the episode.

Another classic dialog is again with Sheldon and Penny:

Penny: What are you doing here?
Sheldon: A reasonable question. I asked myself, what is the most mind-numbing, pedestrian job conceivable? And 3 answers came to mind: toll booth attendant, an Apple Store “Genius”, and “What Penny does”. Now, since I don’t like touching other people’s coins, and I refuse to contribute to the devaluation of the word “genius”, here I am (meaning at the cheesecake factory).

Lines like these make me think of the real meaning and application of LOL. :)

I suppose myself and those guys, as well as the show’s production team, can’t help cracking jokes at Apple. :D

Overall I’d give this episode the following scores:

* reference to sci-fi, comic books, and other geek/nerd pop culture: 6/10

* reference to physics and other fields of science: 9/10

* dialog humor factor: 9/10

* techie/technology factor: 8/10

which gives an overall score of: 8/10

:)

Quotable Quotes: Avatar

January 14, 2010

Finally, my first 2010 post and it’s about the movie Avatar.

After watching it for at least 4 times, here are some of the more memorable quotes (for me) from the breathtaking, astonishing,  overwhelming, psychedelic, staggering, eye-popping, wondrous, awe-inspiring, (anybody notice that these are more or less synonyms of mind-blowing? :) ) absolutely cool movie:

(Quotes updated)

Jake: “Tommy was the scientist, not me. He was the one who wanted to get shot out in space to find the answers.

(Jake Sully talking to himself after getting out of cryo)


Jake: There’s no such thing as an ex-marine. I may be out, but you never lose the attitude. I told myself I could pass a test any man could pass. They can fix the spinal (chord) if you got the money. But not on vet benefits, not in this economy.

(Jake Sully to himself right after landing on Pandora)


Quaritch: You’re not in Kansas anymore. You’re on Pandora, ladies and gentlemen. Respect that fact, every second of every day. If there is a hell — you might want to go there for some R & R, after a tour on Pandora. Out there beyond that fence, every living thing that crawls, flies or squats in the mud wants to kill you and eat your eyes for jujubees.

(Miles Quaritch, during initial security briefing)


Grace: How much have you logged (link training)?

Jake: Zip. But I read the manual.

Grace: Tell me you’re joking.

Grace: So you just figured you’d come out here, to the most hostile environment known to man, with no training of any kind, and see how it went? What was going through your head?

Jake: (smiling) Maybe I’m sick of doctors telling me what I couldn’t do.

(Dr. Grace Augustine talking to Jake before his initial avatar linking)


Grace: (seeing avatar Jake curious about his queue) DOn’t play with that, you’ll go blind.

Jake: That’s kinda freaky.

(Grace to Jake before turning off the lights for bedtime)


Jake: Am I still with (Grace) Augustine?

Quaritch: On paper. You walk like one of her science pukes. You quack like one. But you report to me.

(Jake talking to Quaritch in the hangar area)


Grace: (To Lyle Wainfleet) Stay with the ship. One idiot with a gun is enough.

Jake: (smiling)

Wainfleet: You the man doc.

(During Jake’s first trip into the forests of Pandora)


Jake: So what about this one? Run? Don’t run? What?

Grace: Run! Definitely run!

(Jake asking Grace what to do with the Thanator eyeing him)


Neytiri: Don’t thank. You don’t thank for this. This is sad. Very sad only.

Jake: Okay, okay I’m sorry. Whatever I did I’m sorry.

Neytiri: All this is your fault, they did not need to die.

Jake: My fault? They attacked me. How am I to back–

Neytiri: Your fault! (pinning Jake to the ground). Your fault.

Jake: Easy, easy.

Neytiri: You’re like a baby, making noise, don’t know what to do.

Jake: Fine. Fine. If you love your little forest friends, why not let them just kill my ass? What’s the thinking?

Neytiri: Why save you?

Jake: Yeah, why save me?

Neytiri: You have a strong heart. No fear. But stupid, ignorant like a child.

(Jake and Neytiri talking for the first time, after Neytiri saves Jake)


Jake: I was a marine. A warrior — from the Jarhead clan.

(Jake talking to Eytucan during his interrogation)


Neytiri: Now you choose your Ikran (Banshee). This you must feel inside. If he also chooses you move quick like I showed.

You will have one chance Jake.

Jake: How will I know if he chooses me?

Neytiri: He will try to kill you.

Jake: Outstanding.

(Neytiri helping Jake to get his Ikran)


Grace: This is going to ruin my day

(After finding out that she’s been shot)


Norm Spellman: What’s the plan Jake?

Jake: There’s no plan.

Norm: (baffled) Tsu’tey’s olo’eyktan (clan chief) now, he’s not going to let you near that place.

Jake: I’ve got to try.

(Norm talking to Jake after they arrive near the Tree of Souls)


Outcast.

Betrayer.

Alien.

I was in a place the eye does not see.

I needed their help, and they needed mine.

But to ever face them again, I was going to have to take it to a whole new level.

(Jake’s ikran (banshee) arrives)

Sometimes your whole life boils down to one insane move.

(Jake talking to himself before bonding with the Toruc (the great Leonopteryx) )


The way I had it figured, Toruc is the baddest cat in the sky. Nothing attacks him — so why would he ever look up?

That was just a theory.

(Jake talking to himself before jumping to bond with Toruc)


I was afraid Jake, for my people. I’m not anymore.

(Neytiri to Jake after Jake arrives and has become Toruc Macto)


Jake: Look where we are Grace.

Grace: I need to take some samples.

(Jake brings the deathly ill Grace to the Tree of Souls)


Jake: (talking to Tsu’tey) With your permission, I will speak now. It would honor me by translating.

(Tsu’tey agrees to translate Jake’s speech into the Na’vi language)

The sky people have sent us a message, that they can take whatever they want.

And no one can stop them.

But we will send them a message.

You ride out as fast as the wind can carry you.

You tell the other clans to come.

You tell them Toruc Macto calls to them.

You fly now, with me. My brothers! Sisters!

And we will show the sky people, that they cannot take whatever they want!

And that this — this is our land!

(Jake giving his battle speech to the Na’vi, after Grace dies)


Jake: Give it up Quaritch. It’s all over.

Quaritch: Nothing’s over while I’m breathing.

Jake: I kind of hoped you’d say that.

(Jake to Quaritch in their final battle)


Quaritch: Hey Sully, how’s it feel to betray your own race?

You think you’re one of them? Time to wake up.

(Quaritch to Jake, before trying to kill human Jake in the link room)


Neytiri: Jake! My Jake!

(Gives human Jake the re-breather mask since human Jake is dying due to his exposure to Pandoran atmosphere)

Jake: (After several gasps of clean air) I see you.

Neytiri: I see you (eyes wet with tears).

(Jake and Neytiri touching each other’s hand, after Neytiri saves human Jake)


Jake: The aliens (humans) were sent back to their dying world, only a few were chosen to stay.

The time of great sorrow was ending. Toruc Macto was no longer needed.

(Jake’s monologue during the retreat of some of the RDA forces back to Earth)


Jake: Well I guess I better go. I don’t want to be late for my own party. It is my birthday after all. (smiling)

(Jake, during his last video log before finally being permanently transferred to his Avatar)


See an earlier form of the Avatar movie script, in PDF format,  by James Cameron from Fox’s own site here.  Some of the lines in that PDF file made it to the final version of the movie. It’s quite likely some of the other missing lines or scenes will make it to the extended DVD/Blu-Ray release, such as when Jake and Neytiri made love.

(Spoiler Alert!)

I’ve still yet to determine which ones from that earlier PDF file are canonical and which aren’t, such as Neytiri being 18 (in human years) during the events of the film, as well as her having a deceased sister, among others. Apparently, also in the earlier PDF file, Neytiri became pregnant at the end of the movie. I guess the scientists really did their homework when they mixed human and Na’vi DNA (according to Jake). :)

Things I’m hyped-up/excited about in 2010

December 15, 2009

This is still a work-in-progress list, so it will still be updated. I’m so excited about these that I managed to will myself to write a blog post about them… :). Anyway here they are (lo and behold, geeks and geekettes). Time to get your geek on:

Caprica – Back to the roots of BSG. Oh yes. Lots of sci-fi and sexy goodness.

The Flash: Secret Files and Origins - By Geoff Johns and Francis Manapul, bringing back the long dead Silver Age Scarlet Speedster.  With Geoff’s hot writing (especially post-Blackest Night) and Francis’ fantastic pencils, hopefully they’ll stay longer in the Flash books after this limited series ends.

Batman: The Return of Bruce Wayne – Need I extrapolate any further? In case I do, Bruce has always been my favorite Batman, and somehow I knew DC wouldn’t keep him out of the picture for long. This reminds me of Reed Richards though, when he was sent in another time and place by Doctor Doom, as  a final strike against the fab four. Reed was found by his family though. However in Bruce’ case I think he’ll be the one responsible for bringing himself back to the present (?).

Supermand: Earth One and Batman: Earth One –  Graphic novel format! Retelling of Superman/Batman origins in modern times (ala Ultimates of Marvel)! J. Michael Straczynski and Geoff Johns (again) as writers, respectively! Need I say more? :D Anyway,  in case it’s not too obvious, I love the writers, the heroes,  the concept, and the format. I think it’s a good way to get away from the monthly format (I’m not saying I dislike them), and a good way to save money while salivating for the next graphic novel installment. I read that each graphic novel is about 100 pages, which reminds me of mange-type publications. Oh boy!

Iron Man 2 - Scarlett Johanssen as Nastasha Romanoff a.k.a. the Black Widow!  Downey Jr. and Paltrow returning as their original characters! War Machine! Samuel L. Jackson again as Nick Fury! Jeez, need I go on and say more? :D

Planet Hulk – animated film. I’m not sure how well received the previous film incarnations which featured the Hulk were, such as Ultimate Avengers 1 and 2, as well as the Hulk Vs short films. But it’s good to see ol’ greenskin again, doing hulk smashes and proving once again  he’s a real force to be reckoned with in the Marvel U.

More updates soon.  Oh and suggestions are welcome. :)

\\//,

Thoughts on Ubuntu/Kubuntu 9.10

December 2, 2009

After more than a month since Ubuntu/Kubuntu 9.10 codename Karmic Koala was released, here are some thoughts and noteworthy things about it:

Grub2

Ubuntu 9.10, among other recent Linux distros, now uses Grub2. I didn’t read all the release notes, and when I suddenly became curious at taking a look at my menu.lst to see what Grub2 has in store for me, I was in for a surprise. Grub2 doesn’t use menu.lst anymore. It seems menu.lst is already part of legacy Grub. Initially I disliked this, having used menu.lst since I started Linux (6 years ago). The menu.lst has now been superseded by the /boot/grub/grub.cfg file. However, the grub.cfg file is preferably not to be edited by the user, as it is automatically generated by other scripts such as grub-mkconfig. Now I think it’s a good idea to have this boot file editable by a script, which has rigid syntax and rules in order to properly create a boot config file. Of course, nobody is really stopping the hacker inside any of us to not edit the file, nor to create our own menu.lst, or even to revert to legacy Grub versions.

source/s:

Xorg

Ubuntu 9.10 also uses the updated version of Xorg  (as of typing this I use version 1.6.4) doesn’t use an xorg.conf anymore. As Ben Grim/The Thing puts it, “What a revoltin’ development!”. Again initially I was irked by this, but later I also realized it was for the better, since xorg.conf was becoming too cryptic for newer users of Linux. Now the xorg.conf tasks are being handled by several other config files and scripts.

Which got me thinking, since xorg.conf has already been deprecated, what of the ctrl+alt+backspace that we (or at least I) have grown to love when restarting X? It turns out, the ‘dontzap’ option didn’t work anymore, I tried it. The ‘dontzap’ directive worked for 9.04, but apparently not so for 9.10 onwards.  As a result, one way to turn on ‘ctrl+alt+backspace’ back in Kubuntu via graphical method is as follows:

Enabling Ctrl-Alt-Backspace for Kubuntu

  • Click on the Application launcher and select “System Settings”
  • Click on “Regional & Language”.
  • Select “Keyboard Layout”.
  • Click on “Enable keyboard layouts” (in the Layout tab).
  • Select the “Advanced” tab. Then select “Key sequence to kill the X server” and enable “Control + Alt + Backspace”.

Or, for command line folks like me, by doing

setxkbmap -option terminate:ctrl_alt_bksp

source/s:

Deprecation of hal

Several scripts, including devkit-power and devkit-disks are being used as replacements for hal. So far no issues here, and I think so far power as well as disk management in 9.10 is doing great. I do still see hald running in my machine, wonder why that is.

Some caveats and surprises

I’ve had several issues regarding my initial install of Kubuntu 9.10 32 bit desktop. One was Dolphin crashed a few times while I was dragging and dropping files to VLC’s playlist window. These crashes happened in the first 2 to 3 weeks of my installation, regardless of my constant updating of the system. The great thing however is that KDE wallet, coupled with the revamped bug reporting of KDE 4.3.X/Kubuntu 9.10 makes it so much easier to report bugs nowadays. Eat your heart out Micro$oft. :) I do wish they’d fix and close the bug soon. :)

I haven’t really been using Konqueror a lot lately since Kubuntu 9.10 now has an ‘Install Mozilla Firefox browser’ option included, even in the live version of the OS, which is nice. In the KDE 3.5.X era I used Konqueror a lot, not as a browser but as a very useful file, ssh, ftp, samba, whathaveyou browser. Nowadays Dolphin is all that except a browser. I can still use Konqueror as my main file browser though, I might try that some time. But I’ve grown to slowly accept Dolphin in my day to day computing tasks. The previews, zoom in/out sliders,  different panels, and the widget make of Dolphin make it a delight to use. So so far no issues with Konquer in 9.10 yet.

Dolphin also makes management of drives a breeze, whether they be internal (IDE, SATA etc.) or external (USB drives, media players etc.). The Oxygen theme also looks very sleek and futuristic.

As with my installation of Ubuntu 9.04, ext4 was a marvel to behold, more so since the 9.10 version uses ext4 by default. Even with apache2 and mysql running at boot, my boot time is well under 30 seconds, even with older single core procs.  Scripts like ureadahead make booting much faster.

Conclusion – for now

Other than perhaps minor setbacks I forgot to mention, plus the introduction of some new technologies I listed above, the 9.10 version of Ubuntu/Kubuntu is a marvelous piece of work, stability, dependability,  and usability wise in my opinion. So far. Can’t wait for 10.04/Lucid Lynx.


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