Monthly Archives: September 2009

Tux: The Dark Side (Part I)

devil tux

CTRL – ALT – DELETE!

It’s pretty routine to see the flustered Linux user feverishly banging on CTRL – ALT – DELETE, trying to get his misbehaving Linux box to do something familiar. And then finally giving up and pulling the plug, probably frying his motherboard or corrupting his hard drive in the process. If you ever see yourself (or anyone else) in this pitiful situation, you need to be nice to your Linux box, stop treating it like a Windows one and key in this combination:

ALT – PRINTSCREEN – R – E – I – S – U – B

Note that REISUB is BUSIER in reverse!

Then sit back and watch your system gracefully log itself off and proceed to restart!

This is the first of a series of posts directed to the n00b Linux user just shifted over from Windows.

Image Credit: Izaak

TODO: Punish Operating System

89% of all video games contain some form of violence. Let’s break convention here, and come to face with another dirty piece of reality, and this time we don’t spare the video-game teetotallers. A glimpse into the average computer user’s psyche would bring up a variety of graphic images; violence, torture, punishment. Not in the sense of the soldiers at Abu Ghraib, but nevertheless, disturbing, surreal fantasies of chaining your computer to a wall, flogging its rear, yelling

“Why don’t you just do what I tell you to!?”

Stop looking around guiltily, this isn’t a sermon about how you need to keep your mind like a garden of fresh flowers. The dark being resides within us all, wishing to control, mindlessly, absolutely. And there finally seems to be an outlet to vent out your frustration, and let loose the demons inside. Enter Petrovich.

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Baby Steps | Beginning My GSoC Research

Most babies take their first stumble a year from the time they’re born. Considering I’ve been programming in some form or the other since the Fourth Grade,  I’m a ten year old just crawling out of his diapers;  it’s never too late to take that first step! After the years of self-learning coupled with academic injections of C and Java, I’ve finally set my sights on tackling the Google Summer of Code challenge, 2010.  A familiar piece of advice given to anyone embarking on the Olympian task of GSoC research is

“Hang out on the IRC.”

Deciding to take this a little seriously, I got IRC working on Pidgin and proceeded to join a few chat-rooms. A few days after the initial excitement had worn off had me wondering what exactly I was supposed to gain by watching sparsely populated public chat rooms buzz with random talk every now and then; when I was presented with a pleasant surprise. 3AM, IST. I’d apparently peeved someone off by my constant joining and leaving the chat room.

“Hey, phoenix”

Apprehensive, unsure of what to do, little did I know that this one hour would lead to enlightenment I’d never experienced to date! Humphrey, a teacher at Seneca, had caught me lurking on a chat-room I now believe was intended for his students. This didn’t stop him from giving me my most practical tutorial on diving into open source software development.

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Eyes Half Closed

Before the bleak rays of dawn trickle through the curtain blinds, the night drowns in its silence, the essence of life made conspicuous by its absence. While the town lies in sweet slumber, somewhere, some place, a bright orange glob begins to stir.

The snail crawls towards the other end, ever nearing it’s goal, painfully, slowly, but surely. In the night’s stillness, patience weighs down, sleep forming the lead blocks pulling down the covers over my retina; as I stare at the screen. I watch the bright orange snail stumble on, with eyes half closed. Thoughts half formed.  Dreams half dreamt.

The progress bar fills in its recess; the snail disappears. The page refreshes. I begin to type…