22 Sep 2003 shlomif   » (Master)

New Computer

My father and I set up the new computer. A lot of data was lost and some of the backups turned out to be faulty, but we manage. The new computer is a spiffy Pentium 4, 2.4 GHz with a GeForce 4 video card, and two 80 GB hard-disks with 8 MB Cache. Thus, everything is much faster than before.

I had to finetune the Linux system, as well as install stuff there and on the Windows system. Now everything feels more or less right.

Linux Meeting at the Cafe

Ori drove me there, and we arrived rather early. Later on, other people arrived. All in all, it was a nice meeting and the only thing that disturbed me was that many of the other attendents were smoking. I ordered a chicken salad, which was good, but not too large, so I also ordered a sandwich. I ended up paying 70 shekels for it which is quite a lot.

We talked a lot about KDE, GNOME, Hebrew support, PHP and Perl, MLdonkey and many other topics.

Yesterday's Lecture

I remembered to announce the lecture only on Saturday, and so the attendance may have been smaller than the optimal. Still, quite a few people came, and I lectured and demonstrated the Gimp to them. I was asked that in the next lecture, I'll demonstrate more programming-stuff like Perl, PDL, etc. and hopefully I'll prepare something in this direction.


I took the bike for repairs. It took the repairman exactly one minute to make it fine, and he did not even charge money for it. Now I can bike again, and indeed did.

ALSA sound

On the new computer, I had some problems hearing sound. The sound seemed to be playing and all the volume controls were correct, but no sound was emitted. After consulting people on the IRC and a lot of frustration, I was finally able to solve it. What solved it was downloading the updated ALSA drivers from the Intel (the motherboard manufacturer) site, and compiling them.


I worked on getting the Freecell Solver integration with PySol working again. It did not work at first, and it took me some time to iron out the bugs in the development version of Freecell Solver that have caused it. I wanted to upgrade to the latest PySol, and so I had to compile the Python 2.3 RPM, and to upgrade Python.

One problem I encountered which took me a lot of time to resolve was that PySol was looking for the data in . instead of /usr/share/games/pysol/. Eventually, it turned out it was caused by a file I left there as part of a previous experiment. All in all, the bindings turned out to be fine, and there were different problems altogether.

I also worked on integrating svn-push into the Subversion repository. I searched for a way to build but not install svn-push, and eventually settled on adding my own buildonly meta-target and adding it to the configure.in as those targets that are built. I also re-indented the code (GNU indent seemed to get most of the job done). The code was not commited yet, because I'm waiting to see if people can suggest a better way to modify the build process.


It took me exactly 10 minutes to configure Kmail, subscribe to the Subversion developers' list and send a message with my patch there. Kudos to the Kmail team for such a nice product. My only problems with it is that when viewing a message, I cannot reply to it from the viewer, and have to go to the messages folders to do so; and that I cannot find how to sort messages by thread. But all in all, it's a very nice program.

DVD Playing

We bought a CD Encoder+DVD Drive for the computer. When playing "Bring it On", the DVD installed its own player on the Windows machine, which was not as nice as PowerDVD which came with the drive. I tried playing the DVD in Linux. Ogle crashed on me, and Xine refused to play it with some cryptic message. mplayer did work (after I found out it needs to be invoked with mplayer dvd://1/) and kmplayer gives it a half-decent but a bit buggy GUI.

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