Category: Linux

Jacob has a new computer — and a favorite shell

April 9th, 2010, 41 Comments

Earlier today, I wrote about building a computer with Jacob, our 3.5-year-old, and setting him up with a Linux shell. We did that this evening, and wow — he loves it. While the Debian Installer was running, he kept begging to type, so I taught him how to hit Alt-F2 and fired up cat for […]

Introducing the Command Line at 3 years

April 9th, 2010, 29 Comments

Jacob is very interested in how things work. He’s 3.5 years old, and into everything. He loves to look at propane tanks, as the pressure meter, and open the lids on top to see the vent underneath. Last night, I showed him our electric meter and the spinning disc inside it. And, more importantly, last […]

Review: Linux IM Software

February 15th, 2010, 15 Comments

I’ve been looking at instant messaging and chat software lately. Briefly stated, I connect to Jabber and IRC networks from at least three different computers. I don’t like having to sign in and out on different machines. One of the nice features about Jabber (XMPP) is that I can have clients signing in from all […]

Switched from KDE to xmonad

September 18th, 2008, 13 Comments

Within the last couple of days, I’ve started using xmonad, a tiling window manager, instead of KDE. Tiling window managers automatically position most windows on your screen, freeing you from having to move, rearrange, and resize them all the time. It sounds scary at first, but it turns out to be incredibly nice and efficient. […]

Asus violating GPL again?

August 15th, 2008, 7 Comments

There was a small firestorm last year when people realized that Asus was not releasing source code to GPL’d components of the EeePC. At the time, they eventually did post source code on their website. Recently I bought an Eee 901. Asus has modified the kernel’s ACPI driver. They released the source code to that […]

Kernel interrupt weirdness?

July 12th, 2008, 14 Comments

I’ve had a problem with recent kernels. (I think it’s the kernel that’s doing this.) When my workstation is doing heavy I/O, it repeats keystrokes. For instance, while I was typing this paragraph, audacity was writing audio to disk, and I got this word: heavvvvvvvvvvvy It seems as if it thinks I haven’t let up […]

Linux on the Desktop

July 1st, 2008, 5 Comments

Later this month, I will be giving a talk at OSCon about Linux on the corporate desktop — something we have done where I work. I’ve been alloted a 45-minute timeslot. I will, of course, be posting my slides online and I think OSCon also posts videos of these things. I’m wondering if readers of […]


April 15th, 2008, 8 Comments

Every so often, I come across some utility that need. I think it must have been written before, but I can’t find it. Today I needed a tool to take a set of files and split them up into directories in a size that will fit on DVDs. I wanted a tool that could either […]

Desktop Linux: Gnome

August 29th, 2007, 12 Comments

I had been intending to write an entire series of posts about our corporate switch to Linux on the Desktop. To date, I wrote only one introducing the project and our reasons for switching from Windows. That was back in April. Today I’d like to start talking about it all some more. We have standardized […]

Linux Hardware Support Better Than Windows

August 17th, 2007, 57 Comments

Something I often hear from people that talk about Linux on the desktop is this: people want to be able to go to the store, buy hardware, and be confident that it will Just Work. I would like to point out that things are rarely this simple on Windows. And, in fact, things are often […]

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