Microwave Biscuit

Got no Guts(y)

Posted in Linux, ubuntu by microwavebiscuit on October 19, 2007

I have not upgraded to Gutsy yet for a couple of reasons.

  1. The servers are fairly overwhelmed and waiting a week or so will yield faster upgrade times
  2. I’m afraid of breaking my machine. While I’m sure Gutsy has been tested thoroughly, I’m really happy with my current configuration and my experience has been that when doing distribution upgrades there is a fairly good chance that something won’t work right. It will probably be something minor but I’m still scared.

I will probably throw caution to the wind and do it at some point shortly but another few days won’t kill me, right?

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Triple Screen Notebook: Acme Laptop Does a Three-Way, Unfolds Into Obscenely Wide Triple Screen

Posted in Technology by microwavebiscuit on October 16, 2007

Via: Triple Screen Notebook: Acme Laptop Does a Three-Way, Unfolds Into Obscenely Wide Triple Screen

I’d love to have one of these on a middle seat of a cross country flight. Wonder if they make 3M privacy screens for all 3 of them….

New Toy

Posted in Linux, ubuntu by microwavebiscuit on October 15, 2007

Last week Buy.com had a sale on a toy I’ve been waiting to purchase for a while – the Nokia n800 Internet Tablet. Being that it was on sale for $249 (original price $399) I couldn’t resist and I bought it. It runs a modified version of Debian called Maemo and it’s open source as you’d imagine. I added a few repositories that are available and I was able to get Pidgin, x-term, and a few other tools running quickly. It’s a really neat device! I’ve used it mostly for reading RSS feeds and web browsing. It’s nice to keep laying around when watching TV as if something comes on that I want to hit the web for I’ve got it right there in my hand. It also has a camera, a FM radio and built in Skype support. In the few days that I’ve had it I’ve been incredibly impressed with it. I’m also looking forward to Ubuntu’s new embedded edition when it breaks cover as it may be a nice choice although I’m pretty smitten with Maemo as it is.

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Posted in Linux, ubuntu by microwavebiscuit on October 14, 2007

I did a bit of housekeeping on my PC today. A long while ago I was doing some web development and setup my machine with a traditional LAMP stack. However, I haven’t been doing much on that end recently and I started thinking that having a bunch of servers running that I wasn’t using was probably not too smart. I think I had them mostly secured but one can never be too careful so I got rid of Apache, MySQL, and a few other things that were not serving much purpose. I’m guessing that I was probably pretty safe and no one was hacking into my machine but better safe than sorry I guess. I’m also hoping that the upcoming Gutsy release and inevitable upgrade on my part will go smoothly and the less crap I have clogging up my system the better.

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Just a test

Posted in General by microwavebiscuit on October 14, 2007

Move along….

Interesting Headlines

Posted in General, Technology by microwavebiscuit on October 12, 2007

Looking at My Yahoo! this morning and saw this:


Looking at the time of the articles, it seems as if the offer is going up…

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This makes me sad

Posted in Politics, Wordpress by microwavebiscuit on October 8, 2007


Although not completely unusual, it does make me sad to know that LOL Cats are more popular than politics in the WordPress Blogoshphere.

Well, Duh!!

Posted in Linux, ubuntu by microwavebiscuit on October 8, 2007

I have this habit of making things more difficult than they need to be. A while ago I posted about setting up SSL access to my home Ubuntu PC and I had/have everything working as it should, however my home IP address recently changed and my router didn’t update my DynDNS address. It has a setting to use DynDNS which I’ve filled in and I just assumed that when it detected an IP change it would update the service. Well, it didn’t. So, I decided I would just set up a client on my Ubuntu PC to take care of the updating. A long time ago I had a bash script that did it fairly well but I’ve long since lost it and while I did come up with a few alternatives using the Google, I ended up grabbing the “official” Linux client which is “ddclient”. The DynDNS website has some very helpful tools for creating and configuring ddclient but I still had some minor issues. I started messing with config files, reading docs, etc and I’m sure I would have gotten it to work but a quick search on the Google revealed that ddclient is available in Synaptic. Duh! Why not look there first? I don’t know… Anyway, I selected the package and got a nice debconf gui configuration routine which I filled out and magically it all works. The moral of the story is before attempting to build things from sources, manually configure stuff, etc. check Synaptic. It’s entirely probable that what you are trying to wrestle with is available as an easily configured package.

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Buying mom a laptop

Posted in Technology by microwavebiscuit on October 1, 2007

My mother has asked me to assist her with the purchase of a new laptop so yesterday we went to the local BestBuy to scope out prospective machines. My choice was a clearance Gateway for $349 which I think is perfect for what she needs to do (surf the web, e-mail and play solitaire) however she was leery of it because it wasn’t plugged in and she couldn’t mess with it. So, we went up a notch to another Gateway which was $699 and was roughly twice as nice (double the RAM, double the HD, Writes DVD – which she’ll never do). I’ve bought quite a few Gateway PC’s over the years and they all have worked reasonably well. I still have a Pentium 90 with 64 Meg of RAM that would probably turn on if I asked it to. She wasn’t sold however so we kept looking. We found a virtually identical HP laptop in terms of specs and price but it had some “pretty” patterns etched into the lid of the laptop. SOLD! Pretty beat out all of the other factors. I have had good experiences with HP PC’s as well but just more with Gateway. Apparently that doesn’t matter – pretty swirly things convinced my mother to make a purchase. Hear that Gateway?

I guess being that they are all probably made in the same factory in China it doesn’t matter so much and it just comes down to luck. I also guess I could have gotten her a better deal by shopping online but being that it’s from BestBuy if it’s broken she might be able to take it back at her local BestBuy.

Ubuntu Tag Feed

Posted in ubuntu, Wordpress by microwavebiscuit on October 1, 2007

WordPress has a feature on the dashboard “Tag Surfer” which allows you to specify tags that you are interested in and then see related posts to that tag. I like scrolling through just to see what’s happening in the blogosphere relating to Ubuntu so I have that tag listed. I was just thinking that it would be nice to have that as a RSS feed. I did a little digging around and came up with a feed url for those that are interested.


This will get you a RSS feed of all wordpress blog posts that are tagged as Ubuntu. I don’t have a feel for the volume of posts yet but I’m guessing it’s not overwhelming.

I’m sure you could get a similar feed from other sources but I’m liking this one!

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