East of the Sun, West of the Moon

2005/2/16

I’m a geek

Filed under: OS X,Projects,Software — Erwin @ 1:18 pm

Just in case anyone reading this didn’t know it yet. 😉

Every day I record an audio-stream of a Dutch radio-show. Using mplayer I record it as a WAV(E) file and then convert it for convenience and diskspace reasons into the Ogg Vorbis format.

I used to semi-regularly listen to them with a homebrew Perl script that allowed me to mark the new ones as heard or keep, but as this didn’t combine very nicely with the audio player I used for all my music, this didn’t work out very well and while the automated recording was still happening every day, I had not heard a recording in weeks, maybe months.

Recently I’ve started to listen to podcasts. Initially manually, but after switching to the Mac Mini I’ve gone and installed the iPodder software which drops the downloaded audio files into iTunes playlists, making it fairly easy to keep track of them, listen to them, and then go back to the usual dose of music.

Tonight I decided to create an RSS feed for the captured and converted files and make that available on a website that’s available on our intranet at home and that way seamlessly combine it with all the other podcasts.

Great fun and it feels a bit like I’m making my own custom radio-station this way. I wonder what this will look like a year from now.

Finishing this entry half a day later, I’ve sadly decided to start encoding the stuff into MP3 instead, as the iTunes plugin is less than ideal (it works, but I’ve seen my share of colourful spinning discs, so to speak) and for the 1 hour long audio files it just hangs at the end of them, never finishing, let alone marking it as read or upping the play count. Either way an amusing combination of software packages tied together to make things Just Work ™!

2005/1/26

What goes up… (2)

Filed under: Projects — Erwin @ 5:06 pm

Ah, yes. Thank you, Pär, for dropping my rank back to where it was halfway through December (roughly 13.5 kyu). 🙂

2005/1/23

Men and their toys

Filed under: Projects — Erwin @ 5:10 pm

So back in November (sheesh, time flies) I bought a new scanner/printer/copier, a nice and shiny Epson Stylus CX 5400.

The copy function was of course no trouble at all, since it does not require anything other than the thing itself to be powered up. The scanning also didn’t take much effort, as I’d used SANE before and had a reasonably good idea of where to start modifying its configuration and where to start with adjusting the (Linux) kernel configuration so it would recognise the USB device for what it was. After that, 2 months of procrastinating started because I was distracted by other projects (work and playing Go being two major ones), plus I had never worked with either CUPS or Gimp-print before, so was wondering where to start, what to expect, etc, and finally I actually had to redo some of the scanner software configuration because I moved it to a different computer that isn’t my workstation, in an attempt to sanitise the dependencies between the various machines a bit.

But today I finally got A Round Tuit ™ and installed the lot, then started digging in and for documentation. Thankfully there is quite a bit of it around, even if not all of it is non-geek-friendly, but as I am a geek, it worked out ok. Now there are two things left to do:

  1. Make sure the output ends up in the middle of the page.
  2. Install CUPS on the two Linux workstations so that we can start testing printing remotely.

I don’t think either one of those are going to be a problem though. *happy*

2005/1/17

What goes up…

Filed under: Projects — Erwin @ 5:04 pm

… must come down?

[Rating graph]

This is my rating graph on DGS and I’m just waiting for this mostly-winning-streak to end, pulling me back down to 14-15 kyu, which is the rank I expected myself to be. 🙂

2004/10/7

Fun for the entire family

Filed under: Projects,Software — Erwin @ 8:41 pm

I’ve been working, on and off over the past years, on collecting family-tree information. Initially, around 13-14 years ago, this was just my own siblings, parents, and further up and around. A few years ago I added M‘s family to the mix, which extends it quite a bit of course and also means some positive feedback from various parts of the family that appreciate the effort, always nice when you’re the new kid in town^H^H^H^Hthe family.

One goal of the project was to be able to share the results with others. Seeing how relatives are all over the USA and 99% of my own relatives are in the Netherlands, the obvious choice is a webpage where I draw semi-on-the-fly tree/graph structures with clickable entries so you can hop around. Quite handy once it’s all set up.

So by now I have a collection of 398 individuals and thought it might be cool to put a link on my homepage so I can show the rest of the world the result of the project, put together with a little bit of Perl and the GraphViz library.

But here’s the catch: That would make it a little bit too easy for someone to find out my mother’s maiden name, my father’s middle name, etc, which are two common security questions of online accounts. And not just for me, but also for others in my extended family. Hrm. Until they figure out different security questions, I’ll just be passing on the URL and hope nobody puts a link on their own homepage. 🙁

2004/10/2

$/GB?

Filed under: Projects — Erwin @ 2:12 pm

I think I can stop worrying about being backlogged for a while:

$ df -h /vcr
Filesystem            Size  Used Avail Use% Mounted on
/dev/hde1             187G   58G  121G  33% /vcr

To clarify this a bit, /vcr is the partition used for my homebrew PVR setup. 🙂

2004/9/28

On my TODO list

Filed under: Projects,Software — Erwin @ 8:02 am

I’ve been meaning to install and test OpenVPN, in particular for the wifi network at home but it could come in handy in other situations as well.

To replace the homebrew backup scripts I was thinking of trying Bacula, but haven’t gotten beyond apt-get install bacula yet.

I tried to install GRAMPS but it looks like it’s not all the way available through Debian yet, so maybe later.

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