Settling in with the Gutsy [BETA]

For past few days I have been beta testing Kubuntu 7.10 Gutsy Gibbon. Overall, I have this beta release running on my main production system without too much breakage. By the time the real release occurs, most users will be grateful for a stable, reliable and increasingly user friendly release of Kubuntu.

Update Nightmares
Having lived through a year of Gentoo Linux and its weekly blending edge releases and updates, I feel comfortable helping out with the beta testing of the new Kubuntu. That said, beta testing is only for those that don’t get irritated at breakage. And open source software (Apologies to RMS, free software is like free speech and free markets, but open source has a nicer ring to it.) brings its own kind of beta breakage, since development happens at a much faster pace with the entire community collaborating on the same code. So the breakage and updates come fast and furious. My every computing day starts with an update. And sometimes fixing a crashed upgrade with dpkg.

The battle for Strigi continues everyday. After discovering the usefulness of desktop searching with Google Desktop, I want Strigi to work badly. However after submiting bug reports, installing updates and following a particularly cryptic lead involving pdftotext, nothing seems to work. Actually strigi is more responsive, and takes longer to eat up my processing power, in the end the daemon acts like one and possesses my processor. Only killing it, solves the problem.

Rocking with Amarok
First I used Winamp, and then I discovered Linux and XMMS. And while a soft spot for the ancient XMMS, rests in my heart, my current music player of choice is Amarok. Amarok with its iTunes layout, media library management and plugins beat the pants off all its competitors in both the open and closed source worlds. My favorite features include the seamless music player device management, the lyrics plugin, the podcast aggregator and the soundKonvertor plugin for changing my Ogg collection to MP3s that my MP3 player can handle.

The new version 1.4.7 of Amarok makes the smoothest player out there. Gone is the irritating stealing of keyboard bug that locked up my desktop. The moodbar feature now works out of the box in Ubuntu. Moodbar maps out the dynamics of the song in colours, and displays that info inside the song progress bar.

Gutsy Artwork
The Gutsy art team has added new artwork in this release. This includes a nice neutral aqua wallpaper. KDM login manager now includes a nice new theme that includes the standard user list that an unmodified KDM sports. While I personally have not gotten the theme to work (see bug), this new artwork makes Kubuntu more usable. Whoever said art is not functional, was a fool.

An Upgrade
OpenOffice version 2.3 is one of the much touted features in Kubuntu and Ubuntu. A new release of OpenOffice does not excite me much anymore. However it is an essential piece of software that I use everyday. Its nice to know that large commercial entites such as Sun Microsystems and IBM, continue to develop, improve and contribute to the entire free open source community. Its got some nice features and all the developers involved with the OpenOffice suite should be warmly applauded of their efforts.

More info on the new features in OpenOffice 2.3.

Progress in Remote Control
One of the few pieces of hardware that can work under Linux, but refuses to work under Ubuntu is my remote control. The issue was that the older version of Ubuntu were missing the kernel modules for Lirc, and hence the ability to use remotes. In Gutsy, the kernel modules are included. And with a bit of configuration, and restarting the Lirc daemon, I can get my remote to work. But the entire process is still a bit hit and miss.

The new release of Ubuntu and hence Kubuntu is working up to be a more user friendly release than Feisty. Most of the must have features are in the Ubuntu variant rather than Kubuntu itself. I believe that the uncertainty and development of KDE4 contributes to this lack of major features for the KDE side of Ubuntu. Also many of the bugs and issues I have dealt with, will disappear by the time the final release of Gutsy. The progress on even the irritating Strigi bugs promises to fix this showstopper bug. So keep your fingers crossed. This next release of Kubuntu maybe the most user friendly release yet.

Why Open Source Projects Make Sense Career Wise

Greetings Earthlings! (OK enough silliness for one day, back into the pocket you go Martian.) Once again I have to bring up the sort of lame excuse of being too busy to blog earlier. Well yes, it was lame too much work. Actually I killed my “1337” Gentoo box doing an update. So I basically installed the new Ubuntu 6.06, and I am in the process of setting things up. More on the new Ubuntu tomorrow.

Today’s rant is why open source projects make sense. At least from a university student’s point of view. Undergrad in CS to be exact. All other information from me will have to be extracted via torture, slyness or greasing of palm. 😉

Back to the topic, I am in the process of finding an internship position for the next 12-16 months. So far my own personal experience has mostly unsuccessful. The interesting part is that for the two interviews I have received, my interviewers were most interested in my open source projects. They glossed over my “work” experience, if you can call it that in my case. University courses were not even mentioned. Nope, the thing that stood out were the two projects I am currently actively involved in. For those in the unawares, I actually have 3 open source projects in the works. While initially I thought that working on these projects would be fun and simply educational, it turns out that they mean more than that.

There are three main reasons why I believe employers are interested. These being experience, portfolio and marketing. When you work on a project you have to not only have a grasp on the technology but also on the subtilties of team relationships, and organization. Any open source project will showcase your performance as a developer and/or project leader. The final product is interesting in itself. A look into your source code will reveal your work ethic, organization, knowledge, talent and creativity. Finally comes marketing, which applies mostly to the employer and sometimes to yourself. The words “open source” currently flow with the hype and buzzwords of the business world. By hiring an open source developer, the company gains a zen and almost messanic reputation of by part of what the business world sees as the future. Personally I think open source means plain old fashioned politeness and embraces the ethics of old (the “new” standard of “Western” ethics is quite dissettling). In some rare cases if the project is successful enough, the product becomes a brand onto itself. Any developer of said project also gains a certain amount of worth and can use this to his or her advantage when looking for work.

Well that is all great and everything but how can one gain these advantages. Simply put start a project for something that you need or want. Treat if it were a real life product to sell not just a “pet” project. This is how many open source companies themselves started out. Show your professionalism throughout the process. Try new things, and over time maybe that project will pay off in hard, cold cash.

Till tomorrow,


Its been while since I’ve been online. There is a real good reason for that. I recently had a few issues with Kubuntu. Basically I started modding my setup a good bit. Things basically started not working, and I couldn’t get the system to work as I hoped to. So I attempted to reinstall Kubuntu, and thats when things went from bad to worse. Really worse.

Instead of doing something productive, I had to deal with worst case scenario reinstall. Yes worst case, without hardware failure. The past few days have been mostly picking up pieces and rebuilding my computer into a Gentoo Linux box. For those interested with the itsy-bitsy, tech-linux-geek details read on. As a sidenote after noticing other bloggers, I have decided upon writing shorter blogs. Each entry will a particular theme, not just a massive mixed stream like my previous entries.

The devil is in the details they say. Its true. Before I started to do anything to my setup I should of backed everything up using my DVD-R drive. This would of made things simpler and faster. Needless to say, I didn’t actually take my own advice, which lead to a series of nasty events…

I had read up on XFS during an Operating Systems assignment, how cool it was and everything. So I decided to use it. I was previously using Ext-3 which is the slow, but steady standard filesystem of Linux. Having a separate partition for / and /home I really wasn’t worried. So I installed Kubuntu 5.10 with an XFS root. I ignored the warning about GRUB and XFS not playing well together. (GRUB being a bootloader) The installer had wisely chosen LILO (an older bootloader), but I though nothing off switching it to GRUB being a fan of that particular program. The new system wouldn’t boot. I was stuck without a way into my Linux or my Windows partitions.

A few things I learned MUCH, MUCH later, is that XFS is meant exclusively for massive, high through-put servers. Also that older versions of GRUB would simply die when dealing with XFS. Hey, and I verified that.

So I tried a number of things. Reinstalling Kubuntu 5.10, leading to GRUB errors. Installing the funky new Ubuntu 6.06 with graphical installer. The installer took one look at my messed up partitions (compliments of Dell for being too kind and adding two extra restore partitions, then mucking them up too). So I tried going back to Gentoo. I tried the brand new Gentoo graphical installer, which died out like Ubuntu’s. I decided upon using the console installer for Gentoo. After it died, I realized to my horror that I had or it had wiped out all my partitions. Panic!!! My precious files… gone… nooooooooooooooooo…

I was honestly truely panicking. I looked for a way to boot into Windows and using a partition restorer. No luck. Now I was really in a tight spot. Most of my data was not backed up. And now I couldn’t access it. Then I read a post somewhere, that it was possible to recover it in Linux.

I used gdisk to find the last known parameters of the partitions. Then I guessimated them using fdisk. I then crossed my fingers and installed Gentoo the old fashioned way, by hand. Not extremely fun, but at the end of it I had a working Linux system. After adding GRUB back into its rightful spot, I could now boot into Windows and Linux. After getting into Linux, I learnt that my partitioning was off by a little bit. After coping over the data into the working root partition, I found that only some non-essential files didn’t make it. The next few days were rebuilding, reconfiguring and yes, backing up my data onto DVD.

So the story ends happily with mostly safe data, a working Gentoo system, and I almost have it configured to my desire. Needless to say, that was a close one. Phew!

Morals: Never give up, even the seemingly irreversable is possible. And BACKUP BEFORE DOING ANYTHING SLIGHTLY INSANE!!!!

Finally Peace?

Hehe I hope so. The peace part I mean. Err… I’m getting ahead of myself…

Finished my second exam today, this one being for Programming Languages. Not pleasant, since there was a good degree of Scheme on it. I actually hoped for more of a theory exam but no… mostly Scheme, Prolog, a BNF, and implement pseudo-language question thrown in for flavour. I finished in the expected time, a good chunk of my answers felt weak, so not too happy. None of this means that I will fail the course. So far I have not failed a single assignment or the midterm. In fact I’m expecting a 55-65% mark overall. Nothing to balk at in general. Still I learned alot of what makes a programming language, a language. I learnt about 3-4 new languages: Scheme, Prolog, ML and C++. Overall a pretty good achievement.

On Monday I had my Operating Systems exams like I mentioned. One word says everything about the exam: cakewalk. I got every question, finished a 3hr exam in 1.5 hours, and nearly all my answers were as airtight as… well… think of the most airtight thing… and then take that to the exponent of 100. Oh yeah! I must confess that I am bit of an expert in operating systems, being overexposed to the topic by playing with Gentoo Linux, Minix and reading Andrew Tannenbaum’s Operating Systems books. Yes I read both of them. Anyways I am a bit of a freak in that sense. Come to think of it, many of my classmates consider me to be an expert in a lot of the theoretical-technical part of CS. Being a host for an oversized ego, I neither admit or deny the honour.

Life otherwise has been placed on hold. With one more exam on next Friday, I can finally get back to doing StudentABC work. Since Keith asked me… please, please go visit his site: StudentABC. Its an excellent resource for citations especially for websites. Works near flawlessly for MLA and APA. Heck, I helped do the research and test cases for it. In the near future we will have support for parenthetical citations too. Once I get my lazy butt over there to work on the test cases. And its a totally free service. (Probably should convince Keith to get PayPal though for donations. ;-))

The real progress has come in brainstorming for my novel, Beneath My Icy Cloak. I have come up with a real basic plot, a few characters, and have done most of the research about technology, etc. When I started on the project, I decided to cut out the fantastical “technology” most sci-fi has. I even scrapped all forms of FTL travel. Why? Cause its extremely unlikely to happen anytime soon (read as before the next millenia) and its probably not physically possible. I actually nearly got bogged down on selecting suitable starship drive technology. I finally chose a combination of solar/magnetic sails and nuclear propulsion drives for travel. After some tossing and turning, I decided to keep some warp tech. Yes it helps travel somewhat. But I made it that it is so unpredictable that its mostly used for… other uses. I guess I need a tiny bit of artistic license. Anyways, I have a location, a back story, and now all I need to do is to solidify my skeleton of the story. A select few friends will get the honour of helping me edit it. How long all this will take? I’m not sure. One thing is for sure, I will publish this one. I doubt it will make its way to your local Chapters-Indigo or what-not. But you never now.

Gotta run.

Installing Kubuntu On a New Dell Desktop

Well its been a while… since I last blogged that is. Life has been more or less alright. A number of things happened in between that time so I will spend sometime on each of the major events: installing Linux on a new desktop, impressions of my courses, impressions about Scheme (which sort of relates to my courses), the Datasphere work-study saga, the madness of acquaintances, and general lack of girl friend and major events (hey, I need to bitch about something)

I recently got a new machine, so like any real technophile (or more accurately gadgets-techs-and-other-toys-lover or simply a normal guy) I totally went nuts the day I got it. A few weeks ago I ordered a brand-new spanking Dell Dimension 9150 with a 19″ UltraSharp LCD thrown in. Naturally the morning it arrived I was on a tech-driven high. The poor Puralator guy must of thought I was nuts, bouncing all over the place. But hey, its not everyday is a Christmas equivalent, and the delivery guy basically became a Santa Claus. 😉 A few minutes later of forced calmness, I managed to drag my new toy upstairs and get it setup. The rest of the day was spent either installing stuff, or doing random chores and putting the machine through its paces. I must say that I was impressed with the machine in general, and strangely enough I enjoyed playing around with Windows XP Media Centre which I found to be very well polished and thought out for the most part.

Ater a tiny bit (read as days) playing around with Windows XP Media Centre, I got into installing Linux. All I can say to that is that one I’m a Linux junkie, and second that the target machine is a desktop, hardware issues would be less of an issue. Or so I thought. Fortunately for me I did a bit of research before deciding what kind of a machine to get (and kind of hardware it would contain). Hence the presence of a nVidia card (sorry ATi you maybe Canadian but your support is below par :(), the Intel integrated sound card (I’m not too serious in the music production scene… yet), and the Intel e1000 based network card. This time while having a much more agile machine, I decided against going with Gentoo. Simply I got tired of all the hassle of baby-sitting the system, and dealing with a never-ending stream of updates. So I decided to try out Ubuntu to see what all the fuss was about. Specifically I chose KUbuntu, since I prefer the more polished KDE over over-simplified Gnome. The installation went without a hitch, except for the network card. Aparently I have the latest generation of Intel’s Pro 100/1000 Ethernet cards, and the e1000 driver that comes with most Linux kernels was too old. Intel preceiving this released the source code for an updated e1000 kernel module. Since I was new to Ubuntu and Debian-style distributions in general, so kernel source recompilation was out of the question. I switched back to Gentoo for about two weeks. During that time I found that some compiled and posted the module for the Ubuntu. So I reinstalled Ubuntu, and I have stuck with it since.

My intial feelings about Ubuntu are positive. The distribution packaging system is based in the rock-solid apt build system (which mirrors Gentoo’s Portage), and has a decent number of packages available right of the bat. The hardware detection and setup is very well done, and I appreciate the dbus-hal-ivman automounting functionality (even thought the automatic starting of Kaffeine player when plopped in a DVD is a bit unnerving). The idea of doing sudo for everything that would normally require su-ing in as root is an excellent idea. In a matter of a day I had pretty much everything I needed to run a full scale development box. I even found this neat blogging utility that I am using now called BloGTK. All I need to figure out is a few minor issues such as DVD copying. I hope to get comfortable with compiling kernels under Ubuntu too, so that I can peacifully upgrade to any newer kernel (or slightly tweaked one), and still keep my Ethernet functionality working. Overall, I am greatly surprised how easy it is easy to install and administer a Linux computer nowadays. I think the open source community has gone a long way to making Linux a viable desktop option. I still can remember the fun and games of installing older versions of Mandrake, and SuSE on an older machine and my laptop a few years ago. You want X running on your laptop back then? Good luck. And you want to use your funky-dory nVidia card for 3d accelerated graphics??? Under X??? Dream on. Fortunately those days and experiences maybe numbered. That is all on the topic of new desktops and installing Linux.

Err… remember that I would write about more stuff earlier on? Well I guess I lied. I will continue on later tomorrow. Night.

Putting the Edge Back into My Sword

He ran softly down the tunnel, morningstar sword in hand. The passageway in the caves had begun to twist in a myriad of directions. He stopped to listen for the monster’s footsteps. A few days earlier while exploring the cave system, he had stumbled across an orc patrol. He then smote the first one that got in to this path. Apparently that one was the orchish commander’s lieutentant. Oops. Now there he was the great Adventurer… hunted like a rat by an entire orcish army.

You know those days that you feel like our Adventurer? Well it seems that this month has given me nothing but those kinds of days. Yeah those days. Sort of like perpetual Mondays. 😉

Course work and midterms backed up on me so much, that I had to drop my philosophy course. Did not really like anyways… but I sure hell could you the money. Also I must admit that I have fallen behind in Datasphere work. I was hoping to catch up on that this week, unfortunately I stumbled across my own orchish army. In my case, it was the departure of my laptop’s late chipset. Yup. My chipset of all things. My fan, and HDD are intact. But the machine’s performance has ground to a near P2 halt. Oh, and did I mention that I run modern software applications??? After a number of tests, and reinstalls of my new Linux distribution to no avail. I think I have to “acquire” a new modern system. Unfortunately I have about $100 in my account. So a purchase is out of the question, even off a self-constructed rig. Without the 3D graphics card. Right now I have borrowed my Dad’s laptop. Windows 2000 sucks, and getting the whole system to my liking is a pain in the… neck!

I finally left Gentoo after 1.5 years of continuous usage. I realized that I spend more time configuring my system and hacking then doing school work, house work or even hobbies. Also I don’t have the time or the patience of building a distribution. So hence, enter Ubuntu, or more specifically Kubuntu. The system looks nice, the installation is easy (for a non-RPM system), and is hacker-friendly. I am looking forward to using it, along with setting it up. I hear there a huge variety of packages. So we shall see… I still think Gentoo Linux is the best out of all them. The most flexible, configurable and the nicest package manager. I just don’t have time to do that anymore, besides my configurations often turn out disastrous. And the package release is too fast. But the community is the best I have seen anywhere on the web. Kudos to the Gentoo developers, maintainers, and community for making those 1.5 years the most colourful, exciting and informative years in my Linux experience. However I think I will be more use to you and the OSS community as whole, as a developer. Thanks guys!

I seem to have lost my edge in programming and computer science. I remember being the second best in high school. Some of that elitism continued into university with being a Linux fan, and project manager of my own pet open source projects. Nowadays looking at my mark, and me being in the lower part of the class marks, I feel rather mediocre. In fact if it were not the valiant and determined work on my partner and friend, Daniel D’Alimonte, I would be doing worse. I know that this third year, and that I am in the top elite of CS. However when I am surrounded by such brilliant and talented individuals, a half-talent enthausist looks rather like a drone. Sure from the perspective of a high school student I may seem like a demigod. But I feel puny in my current surroundings. My midterms place me where I am supposed to be. Sorta sucks to finally meet your limit.

Now for more of my unhappiness rant. Dude, I feel so sucky. I am terrible at educational pursuits, as seen above. I don’t excel in art, or any of the other humanities. Social interactions are almost non-existent. Heck even my friend (you seems most unlikely) Rudy as a girlfriend. And supposedly a hot, cute, and almost-“perfect” one at that. I even tried asking out Kat again recently, to go out and do something. She was unfortunately busy with moving. I am not a great worker, in a rule-filled environment I seem out of place, I carry my memory in my PDA (which curiously lost its own… a lot of its own), bad organizational skills, and I can say the say thing about almost anything. I feel most uninspired, and not compelled to work at anything… since I am sooo sucky.

Sigh… I wonder why I even try sometimes. Well I got bored yesterday… and since my crap-box was hogging my wireless card, I did not get ANY school work done. Instead I managed to compose a shorty ditty in Fruity Loops… I hope to use it in my game project for Visual Computing. It will be on my school website, Gluppy Intro.

Well I have to get going. I have a lot to do… OH AND PLEASE WRITE COMMENTS. Most of the time I feel very lonely, it would be nice to know that I am not alone all of the time.

Cruising through the Clouds

Another day off. Well sort of. Today I may be off from school, but the assignments are there nevertheless. Fortunately, I have managed to get my system in a fairly workable state. I can develop for the most part now, I am just emerging the last programs that I need to have a fully operational development system. Basically mySQL, a few graphics programs, a number of games, and a video player is all I need. Oh sure, there are a few things I might to add-on like old style BSD games, extra themes and fonts. But really I am well off now.

I received an email from Ewa today. Its very thoughtful of her, but then she always has treated as a bit more than a friend. I am very grateful for that, since practically all the other girls that I know just think of me as “Oh, just a guy I know.” Sigh… Seems that her semester is working out for her. Actually her course load is far more balanced than mine, as I am taking only CS courses and a Philosophy course to finish off my Humanities requirement. This is sort of paradoxical of me, as I strike as more of the Humanities type but I have been mostly involved in Sciences since mid-high school. I love history, languages, art and the such, but I have been always wary of who teaches them to me. There are just too many crooks, and jerks who indoctrinate half-truths, distortions and lies, and not teach the truth. Often I find these distortions have impacted my life in a negative manner and when I learn of the truth, it becomes harder to accept. So that is why I self-teach myself, and analyze everything in view of what I know, and what I hold near and dear.

Yesterday, I sat in a PEY (Professional Experience Year) session. After this I decided to give this program a try, as the career skills I will develop will be essential to like get a decent job. I mean I can learn now while I am an undergraduate or later the hard way after I graduate. This will require some time, but even the short term monetary compensation from this venture will be worthwhile. Even if I earn some 30 grand, I should be able to pay off all my OSAP debts and the final school year in one fallow swoop. Besides I hunger for the taste of real work, not some half-brained unskilled employment in a factory on the production line. I hope this works out… anyways time to dust of that resume. I go forth now to conquer the skies, as the stars will be next. (Relax all you USAF types, I was being metaphorical.)

Framebuffer Fracked but System Up and Running

Live in the inside of a particle accelerator is quite fast. You hardly get time to look around, but still things happen. So you are never too bored. Buts its no fun… especially if you are about to have a head-on collision with your opposite-spin counterpart at 0.99999C. Enough about high energy physics research, more about me.

Recently, I have concentrated almost exclusively for next week, and especially with building my Gentoo system. The Synaptics touchpad on my laptop gave a lot of trouble, and even worse was the framebuffer. Everything is now working, except for the blasted framebuffer. Naturally, it took nearly ten recompiles of different kernels to get it right. And a lot of searching. As of right now, I have a working X, with a minimal KDE install, Abiword, and Firefox. Its still a long ways away from the hard core developer production system I need. Fortunately most of the hard work is done.

Truth be told I have been slacking a bit. My room is still a mess, things are misplaced, and I have not touched my notes (let alone the assignments) yet. The resume still needs to be done, OSAP picked up, rides, scheduling, et cetera, et cetera, ad nauseum. Better get cracking. Night.

Paper Blogs in the Morning’s Gloom

Its raining again. This is not at all unwelcome or surprising. Most people despise rainy days. I don’t. The gray cloudy skies above enhance the colors of the land below by throwing them against a canvas of clouds. Sure I get headaches sometimes with the changing pressure. Still a little bit of pain and discomfort keep you in touch with the reality of living in a shattered Post-Deluvian world. Besides I love the sight of rain. The beads of clear water clinging to the windows. The fog-like spray thrown up by passing vehicles. Just the silver curtain of rain bombarding the dry, crackled clay ground is a relaxing sight.

I had to start early today, as this time I will be commuting by bus. Not fun but necessary. I was surprised to find out that there is an express bus for Hurontario street. This discovery should cut my travel time significantly. Normally Rudy would give me a ride. Sigh… his dropping out courses has left me stranded with taking buses. The carpooling system is not being helpful either. I want a car. Naturally that is not going to happen anytime soon.

These past few days have been busy ones. Yesterday, I did a monumental backup and now I am rebuilding my Gentoo box. It works mostly except for the framebuffer display and the mouse under X. It will take time to get it in production mode. Also my Palm has been left stranded without a Windows box, and I deleted the evil Documents2Go program. Oh well.

I have a fair bit to do before I set foot in school, so I will leave of here.

Drifting in a Netherworld

Fall. Well not officially but still… everyone can feel it. Summer’s warm embrace is loosening and slowly turning into the cool of autumn. And haven’t enjoyed it a bit… not much time off. And now the sickness. Apparently my latest illness which seemed to be fading, has struck my sinuses. Now I have had to deal with this quite painful secondary infection… So much for time off. To top it off my knee-jerk coughing spree kept me up till 4:00 AM yesterday night. The only thing enjoyable was a reading a VERY depressing Japanese (Yeah for English translation) animated novel. Well maybe not enjoyable but at least I least I felt better about my own situation after it.

Fortunately I have been feeling better with each passing day. Mostly thanks to intensive pill-popping. Of course, to make the experience more exciting, my condition always seems to worsen in the evening. Lovely. So I decided to get some work done. I have updated my Linux box recently, with a newer version of udev, a new kernel (which I soon found to be broken with a new implementation of the Alps touchpad driver…) and few other things. I cleaned out a few old things, like useless libraries, a few games including Quake 3 Demo (sorry it was just too bloody) and UT2004 Demo (love the fast action, but I don’t have time to play), and best of all Mozilla. That’s right! Now I have only Firefox and Thunderbird… without all the additional bloat. I also
threw out the Gentooized version of Eclipse, and got a newer copy for my own personal use off the site. A few minutes later (and DSL reconnects), I had everything I needed. Sort of. My update kept on crashing with the configuration of wings (awesome 3D modelling program), but that bug report I sent in yesterday paid off. I am currently in the process of
reemerging a few kernel dependent programs, and my update.

I have given up on my old laptop. The not-so-hot release of FreeDOS now lives on it. What a change I might add… I really do prefer a Unix system… but at least I can play my old DOS games again. Weee… OLD SCHOOL!!!

As for back-to-school (university) preparations, I am debating on whether to take PEY or not… and whether to pursue a degree in bioinformatics (I suck at Bio and Chem labs and their reports :() or take that one icky statistics course and take the AI courses. I would really love to hack robots (especially space probes/drones/rovers) as a job^H^H^Hcareer.