Back, and Posting Again!
The title says it all, doesn’t it. Still at work on the distro. I have it slightly more permanently installed for the moment on an old Pentium 4 (!) box, since I’m thinking that’s the low-bar I’m going to shoot for. It boots and runs well off of a thumb drive on a regular, BIOS-based PC now, but I’m still having weird intermittent issues with it booting off of the EFI based Macs around here. I’ll get back to that soon-ish, but right now I’m messing with various window managers. The current two “leading” setups are: (1) Enlightenment E17 and (2) Openbox with tint2 and conky. I haven’t tried running conky on top of E17 (not sure why, honestly).
I’ve also been researching browsers, and they’re all horrible. I mean, they’re either completely insecure, featureless, not well-liked, or bloated. Can’t someone make a decent, lightweight browser with decent features? Chromium is pretty much in the lead right now in the browser arena, and it performs…OK….on the P4 box. So that’s good for now. Maybe that will change. I’ve also started some rather bad preliminary work on a few themes. Just some absolutely horrible sketches that I won’t post on the internet until they make sense. I’ve currently got loads of stuff to do, though, so I’m probably going to have to pick up the whole “art” think a bit later. I have made a few decisions on what apps I’m definitely going to include:
nmap (It’s nmap….literally, what else is there to say?)
geany (I love that editor)
links (for those command-line browsing sessions
xclock (making sure you’re still paying attention)
pcmanfm (file manager, at least for now. It’s fairly lightweight, and I like that)
sakura AND urxvt (personally, I really like sakura as a terminal. It’s very clean and minimalistic)
DayZ, Cyberpunk Distro, and Other Things.
First, I intentionally capitilized “other things.” It’s supposed to be dramatic. Deal with it. You might want to read most of it in the voice of Patrick Stewart, but the Other Things part should be read by Keith David.
So, I started playing DayZ the other day with a friend. After a few false starts, some minor issues, and an accidental PVP killing (sorry, whoever you were, but you startled me and got a face full of 7.62 from an AK. Don’t sneak up on me next time.) I’ve decided that I’m going to start something of a rescue service. I’m still looking for a helicopter, and then I need to get a few more medical supplies, but the idea is pretty simple: you need help, you post in side chat. I hop in the chopper, fly to your location (with an escort or two) and patch you up and ferry you somewhere. In return, you hook me up with ammo, beans, or whatever you can actually spare that I can use to either help others or trade for medical supplies. If you don’t have anything to spare, then you get to help fill the chopper up with fuel at a refueling point.
Now, on to the Cyberpunk Distro. I may have been slightly optimistic when I said it would be done by 2013. At the very least it will be completely, totally bootable by 2013. That’s the goal. If I get that done early, then we’ll see what’s next, probably hardware detection and support.
Oh…and there were no other things. LOL
Sabbatical, Break, etc.
Since my plate is currently overflowing, I’m going to have to take something of a sabbatical from working on the Cyberpunk Distro. Don’t worry, this does NOT mean the project is dead; far from it. It’s still very much on my mind and is something I plan on completing by 2013, but right this moment it simply isn’t possible for me to work on it with any frequency. I will STILL be working, but I probably won’t be giving many updates, and I can’t promise as to being able to make significant progress quickly. However, I will go back to working on it in earnest once September has arrived. Until then, it’ll be in fits and starts. Also, if anyone has any good wallpapers, etc., for this thing, postem. They need to be in at least 1920x1200 resolution, but the higher the better. It’s really easy to scale down, but not so easy to scale up. I’ll post a couple that I discovered while trawling usenet (thanks Houghi for always posting awesome stuff, you’re definitely getting a shoutout).
HTC Shift issues.
Well, first of all it’s in Italian. Since I don’t speak italian…that is sort of a problem. I’ve reinstalled Windows Vista and it is now in English. The problem, of course, is that I don’t currently have AT&T (I have Sprint), so I cannot simply liberate the device, HardSPL, etc., and install a new (English) rom. So I’m currently losing. Never fear, I will Succeed!
So, I was just sorta making my way ‘round the net, and I discovered an awesome utility that allows someone to boot from a USB drive even if the BIOS doesn’t support it. It’s awesome. It’s amazing. So I’m about to try booting Google’s Chrome OS on an ancient IBM x31. Let’s see what happens.
Saw the Avengers, bought an HTC Shift
The title pretty much sums it up. I picked up an HTC Shift UMPC. Why? Because Linux! Also, go see the Avengers. It cost me 21 dollars for tickets, and I honestly would’ve paid more. It was a phenomenal movie. Back to lame schoolwork, I guess.
Edit: I wouldn’t have paid more. Figure of speech. Honestly? 21 bucks is a ripoff. Still, great movie.
Well, it’s unfortunate, but it looks like the display card on the iMac has decided to commit suicide, I guess. Both windows 7 and OS X are experiencing random screens of death, and the display is fizzing out on each and turning grey, so….yeah. Well, on a bright note the Macbook Pro appears to be fine. I’ve had the iMac for less then a year, and I most certainly picked up the extended AppleCare, so I’m confident that they’ll just sorta fix it up. Annoying note, though: I spent a little while yesterday preparing Morrowind to play again, and I guess I have to do that all over again on the Pro. Not an issue, really, but kind of annoying. Here’s to hoping that Steam Cloud saved my game!
Morrowind! And Cyberpunk 2020! And Things! (Also, Cats)
Well, I started playing Morrowind again. I used to own physical copies of all these games, now all I have is digital ones. I’m a little sad about that. However, I have the games, and in the grand scheme of things, that’s really all that matters. I can’t install a manual on a laptop. Anyway, I installed the Morrowind Overhaul Graphics and Sound thingamajig, and it makes the uber-powerful iMac chug on it’s highest settings. Even Crysis didn’t do that. Oh well, I guess 10 year+ old games hacked to look better aren’t exactly optimized for multiple cores and whatnot. Nice thing, though, is the installer for the overhaul is a point and click, so there isn’t much need to mess around with, oh, say, changing the modified access time on the damn .bsa files. Yeah, I remember doing that.
Now, Chrome walked me through creating a Fixer yesterday. Still haven’t named him yet. I’ve asked the wife for a chibi to put on the character sheet, since I am the absolute antithesis of an artist. I literally repel drawing.
So, about a week ago we accidentally adopted a tortoise-shell medium-fur cat. We fed this starving, poor cat outside on the back porch, and now she’s living happily-ish enough on the covered front porch on a blanket. I just donated a cat bed to her that my two high-and-mighty troublemaking cats weren’t using. We got it from my brother in law for Sckitzie, because she seemed to like it, but once we got her an expensive cat tree, she stopped using the bed. Now, maybe it will be used. And for a good cause, too. Well, I’m going to find something interesting to do, and probably some Earl Grey tea to go along with it. I’ll post some pics of the cats (all three) when I get around to figuring out exactly why my iPhone grew legs, and where it went.
On a final note, last night I turned an assignment in 32 seconds before it was due. Seriously. The campus website says the assignment was submitted 11:59:28pm. Awesome.
Linux! and other stuff
Well, that’s what I should be doing. Instead, I’m on tumblr, IRC, and surfing the net listening to some Icon of Coil. I’ve done a bit more work on that design idea for a cyberpunk linux distro. Since I’ve been failing to give updates in /Projects on the forums I’ll give an update here, then copypasta it onto the forums later.
The original idea was to use Ubuntu and make a more cyberpunk distro out of it, using themes and fonts and what-have-you. When it was explained to me that Arch actually has it’s own distro creating bit I changed my mind, fired up some virtualbox vms and started messing around. Then it hit me: my idea is that I want this particular system to be usb bootable, put also have persistence inside a virtualbox virtual machine. The same persistence. And I want this virtualbox system to function on Windows and Mac. Also, it’s encrypted. So picture this: you grab your CyberpunkLinuxDistroOfDoom stick (we’ll collectively figure out a good name for it later) and plug it into your Macbook Pro, load up the vittualbox install that’s on the thumbdrive, and it takes you into your linux desktop. You start coding a website, then realize you have to go to your campus. So you shut down the vm, grab the stick (after properly ejecting it of course), and head into school. BUT! They run Windows! Doesn’t matter. Plug your thumbdrive in, open up the windows version of virtualbox, and continue working where you left off. You get back home and realize that you left your power adapter for the mac somewhere, and all you’ve got is this old computer without a hard drive. No problem. You just plug that thumbdrive in, boot from it, and away you go. That, right there, is the ultimate cyberpunk distro. Works with any kind of hardware you can get your hand on (intel only, lol), fits on an 8 gig thumbdrive, has complete persistence, and proudly shows your linux roots. Also, it automagically connects you to the forums and the irc when you click a button. A small button, but a button. As a bonus, it has lots of lovely little hacking tools (only the command line ones, though, for space reasons at this point. So, I’m thinking of using either enlightenment or openbox. Also, I’m thinking that urxvt should be the default shell, but I’m really partial to sakura too. Any ideas, complaints? Let me know on the forums. Oh, and the forums are: http://cyberpunkforums.com