Monday, January 6 2014

Ubuntu 13.10 and Darktable
[15:15:31] matt [wronka.org]/Trip Unfortunately, the Darktable developers package the latest versions for Ubuntu, which means it's simply easiest to use that distro. Installing 13.10 at home at least avoided the issues 13.04 had at work with filesystems not being mounted during init (like /tmp), but oddly switching from 12.10 to 13.10 30-bit dual-head became unstable and lost acceleration. 13.10 seems to work alright (or at lesat with accelration) when connected do one output to the Haswell card, but connecting two leads to instability and a lots of acceleration. The same computer, swaping the boot drive, works fine with dual-head 30-bit on 12.10 so this appears to be a software regression as opposed to a lack of general support for the configuation.

Otherwise, upgrading to Darktable 1.4 from 1.2.x has been positive. (Back on 12.10), it feels much faster, especially when turning-on level and curve controls (it seems to have already calculated the luminosity distribution which used to take an annoyingly long time to appear), and more controls can be instanced—this is particularly useful for levels to be used like an ND grad (better than the default ND grad control) and spot removal which can now blend to just affect spots when cloning dust.

Friday, September 17 2010

[18:32:36] matt [wronka.org]/Merch Laudable points on the N8 are its responsiveness--very noticeable coming from earlier Symbian S60 devices and also the Samsung Galaxy--and hot swappable Micro-SD and SIM cards. Unfortunately, the battery is not easily removable. The UI is also much different from earlier S60 devices, which might be a plus, but I'd need more time with it to decide.

Tuesday, April 13 2010

Fancy Small Computers
[19:49:41] matt [wronka.org]/kerberos I remember a time, not so long ago, that it was difficult to find a small computer that was portable and had a long battery. The OQO looked intriguing, but it would continue to be vaporware for several years. The only thing I could find was the Fujitsu Lifebook P-series, which at the time was using the exciting new Transmeta Crusoe chips designed for energy efficiency. Unfortunately, even compared to the computers of the day, that laptop was slow.

These days "netbooks", much to the shagrin of Psion, are bountiful--often running on Intel's x86-compatible Atom processor, although increasingly running on ARM Snapdragons (supported by Maemo, Android, and Ubuntu Linux distributions among countless other variants). Jamie just got an Assus EeePC that's running Ubuntu; my mother has an Acer Aspire One running some MicroSoft version. I borrowed the EeePC and didn't want to give it back, it's really well done given a single-use mentality (the Netbook Remix variation of Ubuntu is very Mac-like).

The question I find myself pondering is what do I really want? I recently picked-up the Nokia N900 which runs at a decent clip, the Maemo 5 (Fremantle) interface is pretty snappy, and I've really gotten used to the touch interface for anything non-productive ("consumptive") tasks. It's actually a very amazing machine that in practice is very much like that P-2110 but smaller.

In the end there's a lot of small options, and they each have a different niche to fill--but I'm not sure how much overlap they all have. It could be that one covers too much of another's niche, making two distinct devices redundant. I can carry the N900 instead of the E61; but it doesn't replace the Neo when I need a small pocketable phone. I could carry the EeePC on trips where it would take-up less space than the MacBook, and still have a phenominal-for-a-laptop keyboard to compose messages or configure machines, or even do work albeit on a small screen. But what does that really get me? A slightly bigger screen (2") and a bigger keyboard, at the cost of another device--and one that doesn't have a ubiquitous Internet access at that.

If more areas had converted to municipal WiFi, it might be a different situation.

Wednesday, March 31 2010

Modest Patches
[04:15:12] matt [wronka.org]/kerberos <http://matt.wronka.org/stuff/projects/icpp/modest/>

I've collected together a bunch of patches for bugs in modest that haven't been fixed yet. Unfortunately, the combined patch requires a version of modest that needs PR1.2 to run on the N900. It's a huge leap in actually being usable, however.

* fix for bug 3700 ( sig should be below quoted text)
* fix for bug 4840 ( sig should be stripped in reply)
* partial workaround for bug 6509 ( font is too large; causes 80 characters to wrap )
* fix for bug 2563 ( only supports English and Swedish )
* fix for bug 9054 ( folder details should show unread message count )
* bug 9778 ( preliminary support running an external filter prior to composing a reply a la mutt send-hook )
* bug 9779 ( always forward as an attachment )