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Goodwill & Techie Updates

After almost 6 months of withdrawal (due to blown adapter), I baked my laptop (in the oven door, seriously) and spent this past week bringing it up to Linux-geek worthiness level. Everything worked when I pushed the silver power button but Steve had bought a new wireless router (to hack into -- he's already doubled the antenna's power so that our brains cook at night --) and switched da Blue House to WPA, but my old wireless tools didn't like WPA. And that's how one, simple update flung at the face of everything that was old on my laptop ... because half a year is an eternity in computer time.

I'm listing the updates for my own reasons.
  • ndiswrapper + iwconfig dropped for ipw2100 + wpa_supplicant - Intel finally opened up the specs for their (now 4 year old) Centrino black blox so I ditched the emulation bottleneck
  • monolithic Xorg deprecated by modular Xorg - this caused an irritating f*ck up with the next item ...
  • ati-drivers swapped for Xorg's drm - the ATI's binary drivers that work(ed) with my aging video card were built against that monolithic Xorg, and I simply could not get any version in portage to start X. The open source DRM drivers are working well -- although without some OpenGL eye-candy like GLX -- so maybe this means my laptop is older than it feels.
  • upgraded to latest 2.6.20 kernel - this my attempt to fix the previous f*ck up. No big changes ... other than my kernel becoming more bloated. 1.6M now, ugh.
  • upgrade gensplash - very cool bootup! The Gentoo 2007.0 logo fades in at high dpi; it's as nice as OS X's. Might as well since I rebuilt the kernel. :)
  • unicode fixes and font installs - beautiful fonts and terminals now, and everything's managed by xfs so I can change things by editing one config.  Sweet!
  • installed vlc - awesome program! after it actually loads the GUI, which required beating up other libraries
  • installed audacity - simple, cool and open source audio editor. :)  Playing around with it has taught me to respect musicians more. (Mixing tracks, silencing noise, etc.)
  • installed webcam stuff - ...
... YEA! I bought a webcam, finally. It was irresistible!  It was namebrand (Logitech), the Doc* wrote Linux drivers for it, I had promised to record some live music, and it was $20 at Goodwill!  Who can resist buying stuff they don't need from a store whose name sounds altruistic?!  Anyways, with this webcam at my side, I'm officially an Internet addict.

Now I want someone to come over and use it.  :)  Matt?  You visiting soon, right?  K...


* The guy is webcams for Linux.  Who says publicly licensed stuff doesn't work?!  Wikipedia critics meet your doom.

Comments

( 3 comments — Leave a comment )
keylomapus
Jun. 29th, 2007 02:02 pm (UTC)
YAY for goodwill!
vap0rtranz
Jun. 29th, 2007 09:13 pm (UTC)
They opened just a month ago here ... along with Panera Bread, and both mean less reasons to visit cities. :P
moosehead_beer
Jul. 4th, 2007 07:12 am (UTC)
(a) A phonograph record (circular disk) carries a uniform density of "static electricity" (charge density) σ. If it rotates at an angular velocity ω, what is the surface current density K at a distance r from the center?
(b) A uniformly charged sphere of radius R and total charge Q is centered at the origin and spinning at a constant angular velocity ω about the z axis. Find the current density J at any point (r, θ, φ) within the sphere.
( 3 comments — Leave a comment )