Kc307 : "A Sliders workstation"

We take a deep technical dive into the “sliders workstation” and how you can “do your computer thing” independant of hardware, operating systems and software and slide from OS to OS. We talk about hardware, browser platform, desktop productivity, communications, entertainment and storage and how to do it between all of your different devices. This is the “sliders 101” of cross platform computing.

Shownotes

  • Intro
  • Hardware
  • Operating System
  • Browser platform
    • Applification Software to “applify” Webapps
    • Extentions
    • Office and Wordprocessing
    • Todo :
    • Multimedia
    • Content Consumption
    • Content Creation
    • Communication
      • Desktop
      • Hootsuite (Web based) Twitter-Facebook-Linkedin-GooglePlus
      • Desktop integration
      • Ubuntu : Web content integration
      • Pidgin or Adium
      • IMO
      • Skype
    • Storage
      • Google Drive
      • Dropbox
      • Portable Storage
      • Shared Partitions
      • Central File storage (Samba – NasDrive – SSH mounts)
    • Offline Life ?
      • Gmail Offline Chrome extention
      • Googledrive + Dropbox for offline sync
    • Signoff
  • New Google Voice number for US listeners : (218) 262-9237

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Kc306 : "Doortodoorgeek Talks Tech".

After our little unscheduled hiatus we are back in the saddle with a superlong and fun packed episode with the hardest working man in podcasting : Doortodoorgeek. We talk about a wide variety of tech topics ranging from Android to Ios, Apple Windows and Linux , Rooting phones, Rasberry pies and life as a geek. We are super excited to get this cross platform maven on the show and are very VERY happy to bring you this extended episode of the Knightwise.com podcast.

Shownotes.

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The essential collection of Cross Platform "Cheat Sheets."

There is a command line command to top up my bank account with an almost infinite amount of cash. The only thing is .. i forgot what it is.  Like keyboard shortcuts, command line commands are awesome and can save you a lot of time. BUT you need to remember them. Sure things like CTRL V and CTRL C are easy to remember, just like commands like ‘ls’ and “sudo apt-get update” because we use them on an almost daily basis. But what about the others ? One way to remember your power commands is with some cheat sheets ( I dare you ! Say “cheat sheet” 10 times , really fast) So click the links below and remember that cheating is allowed .. this time.

General Linux Command line Cheat Sheet.

Ubuntu Cheat Sheet.

OSX Command line Cheat Sheet.

Windows command line Cheat Sheet.

Ultimate collection of cheat sheets ever made, including the one to reboot the universe.

 

 

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Bootcamp keymappings for Windows keys on Mac keyboards.

Bootcamp is a pretty sweet invention. Allowing you to run Windows (or Linux) on your Mac, alongside with your favorite OSX install. Now the boys in Redmond and Cupertino might have you believe this is a completely flawless experience, but on a compact Macbook air keyboard, I dare you to find the Delete key (not the backspace key) while booting into windows.

The thing is : Mac keyboards have a different layout then “Pc keyboards”. And if you are a mouse Jockey you might not notice, but when you like your Windows keyboard shortcuts you might find that some keys just aren’t there. This comprehensive list gives you a an overview of what keycombo’s you need to press to get to your favorite Windows keycombinations .. on a mac.

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Play your best cards : Portable apps on an SDcard.

The days we still had computers that did not have a usb port are long gone. Most computers these days come equipted with a variety of SD-card readers. Now we know we use those things in our camera’s and our phones , but we don’t always have to. One of the beautiful things of SD storage is that its cheaper (and sometimes faster ) then a usb stick AND they fit in your wallet ( Just like a condom does ) So instead of carrying around those chuncky usb drives on your keychain, why not go all “spy” on them and install your favorite apps (and your much needed data) on an sd card you carry in your wallet ? Its like the modern day microfilm .. for geek-spies.

You can of course run your favorite collection of portable apps on there , and THIS site is one of my all time favorites when it comes to having your own little launcher in the taskbar of any system to kick off your portable apps from. But Pendriveapps.com comes with an even bigger collection of applications stuffed inside different categories. So check them out and go get yourself that super fast 32 SDHC Flash card to geek out on. If push comes to shove you can always carry an SD to USB card reader to use when there is no compact flash reader in the pc you are using. The usb stick is sooo 90’s Upgrade to an SD card and carry your apps .. in your wallet.

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Achtung ! Wolfenstein 3D turns 20 and is free for you to play.

You start noticing you are getting old when things like “20th anniversary of” start popping up all around you. And with that I don’t mean the 20th anniversary of your retarded cousin (who you thought would kill himself by endlessly going around a revolving door) but things like GAMES. Games YOU used to play when you were a kid. Games that were “adult” enough they didn’t include my little ponies and those friggin Carebears. Things like Wolfenstein 3D. Yes , you remember running round this maze in what could be described as the first first-person shooter where you could frag Nazi’s to your hearts contempt. Perhaps not very historically friendly to my German speaking neighbors who would frown at the concept of Adolf Hitler coming at you guns blazing, nor the perfect gift on your jiddish friends bar mitswa, Wolfenstein 3D was awesome to play.

it marked the beginning of Shareware where a game like this, not tied down with copy protection and drm management ( also referred to as hackerporn ) could stand the test of time by being freely distributed throughout the internet. You can still find versions of the original Wolfenstein 3D to play ( I think you need dosbox on Windows ) and you can find everything you need HERE.

But what if you own a Linux machine (or an Ubuntu machine) ? “Linux is just for nerds” you say ? Why I beg to get my luftwaffe and differ : You can fast forward fifteen years and download “Wolfenstein enemy territory”  An action packed pixel free first person reincarnation of the classic Wolfenstein 3D.  Curious ? For those of you who think that Linux nerds are bearded guru’s , check out the action in Enemy territory in this little video.

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5 tools to become Omnipresent.

The downside of having both Tech Skills and a family … is that sometimes you become the family helpdesk. Before you know it people ring you up to fix their computer, and for some (like my mum in law and my wife’s “Ubuntu” Granny) a smoothly running computer is VERY important. But sometimes when the phone rings i’m wearing my PJ’s and don’t feel like hopping in the car and driving over. Or sometimes the people I need to help out live halfway around the planet. Time for my 5 favorite tools for digital omnipresence. All I need is a computer, a fast pipe and these tools and “Killroy 2.0 is .. everywhere”

Teamviewer : When it comes to cross-platform remote control of systems over the internet, Teamviewer takes the cake. Because I love to control all kind of systems without having to bother about the OS, Teamviewer is the perfect tool for the job. On demand or unattended remote control sessions, a chatbox and file transfer. Teamviewer does it all. I install teamviewer on all the systems I manage for remote control without needing to bother with open ports or IP addresses.

Dropbox :  Suprising as it might seem, I use dropbox for a lot of my remote work. The Ubuntu granny has her pictures and document folder stored on her dropbox accounts. That ensures simple but effective backups. But with access to her dropbox account I can drop or pickup files she needs. Picture from her grandchild not opening ? Strange attachment ? Dropbox is the perfect tool for remote file management.

Skype : (auto Answer) : Sometimes it helps if you can talk to the people you are helping out. I use Skype to do just that. The combination with teamviewer is excellent and it allows me to talk and type at the same time. The difference with “being there” is very slight indeed.

No-ip.org : When the ‘remote person’ has a dynamic IP address its sometimes hard to “find them back” on the internet. If you google “what is my Ip” you get just that, but to avoid that extra manual step, its nice to bind a domain name to a dynamic ip. Dyndns used to offer this service for free, but not anymore. No-Ip.org does do this and gives you a choice of several ‘client’ applications to install on the remote systems.

SSH : When it comes to remote controlling systems via the command line, sending files back and forth or even piping through X or VNC sessions , SSH is ‘tha bomb’. Versatile, secure and a great way to tunnel through the internet for remote omnipresence.

 

 

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DOTW : Jdownloader : The ultimate Youtube Downloader.

Download of the week : Until a while ago I used an app on my Mac (I have even forgotten the name) to download any Youtube video’s I needed for the podcast or for some of my presentations. When upgrading to Lion, it decided (or rather Lion decided) it wouldn’t work anymore. Tough 🙁 I had found some alternative online sites to do it but searching for solutions like this is one of those internet ratholes like looking for free mp3 ringtones.) When twiddling around with it I had one of my favorite cross-platform download apps open in the background : Jdownloader. I use Jdownloader for multi-url links and long running downloads. Its free, its cross platform and it has this handy “url catcher” where it notices when you copy a url to your clipboard and then offers to download it. When the activity window for Jdownloader started blinking I checked out the “link grabber” window and was amazed to find that not only it had “caught” the url of the Youtube video I copied, but it offered to do something more. Jdownloader will offer to download AND CONVERT your Youtube video into several sizes like : MP3, FLV, MP4, Webm and more (depends on the video) So this tool is something that should not be missing in your application folder on ANY of your systems.

Download Jdownloader ( mac – lin – win ) here.

 

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Getting things done with Wunderlist.

If procrastination was considered an artform, I think us ADD geeks would be considered the very masters. Only we would not have started our artform yett, we would do so tomorrow. First we need to see this video abou this cat on Youtube.

As a remedy to this “affliction” we are blessed with, information overloaded techno-philes with the attention span of a butterfly tend to lean towards guru’s like David Allen and his famous ‘Getting things done’ techniques , or, if we could spare the time, listen to Merlin Man rave about his “42 folders”. Having been at both points I can only conclude that the rantings of these “superheroes of productivity” depress me to no end. I feel like i’m NOT getting things done and for the life of me can’t come up with 42 folders to put those things in.

And yet, during many times my mind is overloaded with tasks, idea’s, things I should not forget, Issues that have been sitting on the back burner for so many months. So “getting those things done” would be nice. If only to organize the myriad of NEW tasks and idea’s, random thoughts and more that I come up with to “drown out” the nagging backlog of what I still need to do.

So here comes rat-hole number 2 : Looking for a “system”. I have seen geeks depart in the valley of the “GTD’s” (*getting things done) in the quest for a perfect ‘organisational system” . I have yet to see one of them return. Looking for a GTD system and tweaking it can be some time consuming it becomes an activity, i dare say and “obsession” all on its own. Defeating the purpose of the system. You get nothing done because you are still tweaking your GTD system.

I’ll spare you that one way trip into that black hole by sharing what I found this week.  The need I have is as follows. I need to keep track of several (many) issues for work, some of them done by others, some of them need to be done by me. I need to keep track of those issues, make notes, follow them up etc. Untill now I had just used Outlook (of all things) and some pathetic attempt at folders to do so. I must say .. it was not a success. Why ? Because Outlook (and the folders) are in my office and I am on the road. Item number 2 brought me closer to my goal : 2do is an App for the iPad that consists of a fairly well featured todo list that let me follow up on all of those things. Allthough there was no link between “2do” and my Outlook, I played “biorobot” and typed over all the things I needed to remember. But 2do was flawed in several ways. Only available on the Ipad and with no “cloud functions”, 2do is an insult to a cross platform slider.

Enter my Solution : Wunderlist : A very well built 2do application that lets you add, categorizdddddde organise and liquidise ( lets mix up the usual adjectives here) your tasks. It looks pretty good , is fairly stable but there IS one thing that lets it rise to the very top of the list : Its cross platform and “cloud bounces” your data up and down to the several devices you have. Did I say several ? That is because I meant it. Available for the Ipad, Iphone/ipod and the Android it helps me “get things done'” in ways David Allen could never do. I love the layout, the reminders, and the sheer fact that I can punch up a Todo list on my phone and have it available everywhere. With desktop versions for Windows, OSX, Linux (only 32 bits) , and the entire range of mobile devices, I cannot hide behind the excuse that my current device has no access to the interface of my 2do list. (When everything fails and i’m stuck in a Cave with a Thin client, I can still use the web)

So give it a spin and … Get things done :   http://www.6wunderkinder.com/wunderlist/  Oh btw : It IS of course … Free.

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From dapper to edgy in a snap.

When a new linux distribution hits the scene its always a little bit like Christmas. As the beta releases taunt you like packages beneath the tree, tempting you to try them out .. The hard part is sitting on your hands untill the website screams FINAL and the fun can begin. Thus here is my little christmas carol about how I updated my good old Ubuntu Linux 6.06 version to the latest in 6.10.

No beta's please.

Every new release of a linux distribution (in this case the new Ubuntu) puts the blender in the rumor pot.  What is new , what is going to change, this and that cool stuff is going to be new, are they gonna drop this and that. The only way to divide fact from fiction is downloading and installing the public beta versions that are released. Now I have never been one for beta's. And that is for two reasons. First of all because a beta never gives you a clear picture of what is going to be the final product. Sure, you might get a glimpse in the general direction, but the difference between the beta and the final release may be as dramatic as the difference between cookie dough and the finished brownie. Secondly : Beta's are mostly far from stable. Unless you are a developer or some genius programmer who can find and fix bugs in this PRE-released version of  a final distro, its not gonna do you much good. Forget using a public beta as a stable system. You are riding an unfinished car to the finish line. If you are masochistic and love to hog unpredictable kernels I would suggest turning to any version of Windows before its service pack one. 

Thus I bide my time till the final comes. And when my curiosity gets the best of my I'll just download the fucker and run it in a virtual machine.  

Why should we care to upgrade ?

Erm.. Good question. In the case of Ubuntu 6.06 it was out of sheer curiosity.

I (finally) got my current version to play nice with my home network, had it all eye-candied out so it looked smooth and more importantly, gotten used to the look-feel and possibilities of this worthy windows-replacing operating system.  Since it was a "decimal" upgrade (from 6.06 to 6.1) there was no rush. (When however they moved from 5. to 6. I was all over the place with joy). The other thing is, Linux distributions evolve differently from windows distributions. In mickey-software they whack in all  the cool toys and worry about security POST RELEASE. In Ubuntu they make sure the system is steam liner-stable and "Fort Knox secure" before they release it. All the "fancy smancies" are developed later by the community. So a Ubuntu distro can be considered "ripe for use" about two weeks after release when the command-line-geeks have had enough of caffeine driven all nighters and coded the crap out of themselves to prep the add-ons. 

But upgrade we shall ! (reinstall / upgrade)

Now, If I had absolutely nothing to do with my life, and installed/reinstalled my system every time there was a kernel fart, a re-installation was something to consider. Wiping ones hard drive clean and installing an OS from scratch is like wearing clean underwear or sleeping in fresh sheets.  But since I had my 6.06 running so smoothly the thought of upgrading crossed my mind. With windows I would never EVER Consider this , and even on my mac i like it better when i can erase/reinstall rather then upgrade. But I decided it was time to test the agility and maturity of Linux by going for the upgrade.. (and just maybe I'm a lazy fuck who did not want to wipe his porn ?) If you have the time go for a clean reinstall , If you don't want to wipe a working system, try the upgrade. You can always reinstall when it goes wrong.

Upgrading a working system.

I could tattoo the following advice into peoples forehead yet they would not listen to me until one day .. they loose everything. " BACKUP BACKUP BACKUP" what ever you do to a working system, make sure you backup everything before you begin. Don''t even try to come over and wine about all the crap you lost. I'll laugh in your face , step on your toe and write "I TOLD YOU SO' on your belly with pink lipstick. Afterwards you can run around naked in shame for all I care. I have no compassion for persistent stupidity. Next up : Be prepared for failure. Don't try elaborate shit like this if you need to get a paper out by next morning. Be prepared for total system fucky-uppie and start working on emergency response scenario's should your "kernel based acrobatics" fail.

The magic command line code

So lets get started. We have  " one cup of Ubuntu 6.06, with the important data and settings skimmed' Next up I found this great website that teaches you how to upgrade using just one line of code. Just pop open your command line window and type :

gksu "update-manager -c"

 

update

 

Next up enter your administrator password. The message will come up a new update is available and you need to click the 'update" button to do so. So what should you do ? … Hit it you twit !. The upgrade process will take quite some time so be prepared to actually spend time with your family and do what "normal' people do. Don't bite your nails awaiting the completion of this process.. Why  ? cause its not nice ! 

After about an hour the whole thing will be done, Reboot your system and say a prayer to "Sint Rita" who is the holy chaperone for lost causes. If Rita can't help you .. you are officially screwed.  

The magic word : Automatix !

If all went well you'll have a completely upgraded system. Otherwise enjoy your horrible " KERNEL PANIC" message heralding the end of your operating system as you have know it thus far. But you backed up all important data anyway .. didn't you ..  So now the trick is to make this fancy new version of Ubuntu into a working operating system. This means, being able to play *wmv files, play dvd's, be able to run Google earth and what have you . In short : All the good stuff. To do this there is the magical script of AUTOMATIX that will help you accomplish what takes geeks months, in mere minutes.  

If you had automatix installed on your old 6.06 system , lets remove it first shall we ? : Open a command line an type :

sudo apt-get remove automatix

enter your admin password and be gone with the old automatix.

Then we prepare to install AUTOMATIX2. So in our command line window we type : sudo gedit /etc/apt/sources.list

this will let you add the following line to the end your sources list ( where your linux gets his good stuff)

deb http://www.getautomatix.com/apt edgy main If you see any simular lines with a # in front of them, remove the # and save the file.

Now we enter some geeky lines in order to make automatix work. (hit ENTER after every line)

wget http://www.getautomatix.com/apt/key.gpg.asc
gpg –import key.gpg.asc
gpg –export –armor 521A9C7C | sudo apt-key add –

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install automatix2 

If all went well you will now have a little AUTOMATIX icon in your
gnome menu ( APPLICATIONS / SYSTEM TOOLS / AUTOMATIX

And then some.

Now the good stuff can start. As you see , in automatix you can choose what good stuff to install , if I where you I would check every little tickbox and then get some more quality time with the family. The installation of programs like , skype , google earth , picasa and more might take some time. But when you are done all the stuff works fine and you are the proud owner of a fully working Ubuntu 6.10. Have fun.

Sources :

Automatix2 

Cup of Tech 

 

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