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Showing posts from March, 2011

An essay on time : Saugata Chatterjee

Time is something we experience every day. Curiosity about the nature of time dates pre-civilization times, more than 30,00 years ago, when men drew the phases of moon and counted days. But serious thoughts about nature of time was begun only much later, in Europe, by Socrates, who plunged the idea deep into the philosophical school of Greece and taken forward by Plato and in India. where people pondered over true nature of creation. The Greco-Roman concept of time was practical, involving measurement of time. The Indians took it many more leagues further by describing time as infinite (Lord Vishnu floating eternally and creating universe out of nothingness). The concept of infinity might have also entered Vedic culture in the context of creation and the role of time, but infinity might be used from a different perspective. The endless cycles of time divided into 4 major "Yugas" clearly depicts that ancient Hindus conceived time as endless but the only way they could incorp…

Executable bit not set for external USB hard disks problem workaround

Problem : Previously the Linux system could automount external HDDs with executable permissions. Any file could be run directly from the hard disk. But the flip side was that almost many files including text files used to get the executable bit set. Hence Nautilus attempted to autorun the HDD. This apparently confused many first time users. So from 10.10 onwards Ubuntu stopped setting the executable bit on external HDDs. At what level it is done UDEV, HAL or PMOUNT is unclear tome. But since pmount is the final piece the workaround could be applied there.
Workaround :
First plug in the external disk. Display the mount points.
See where is the mount. For eg.
/dev/sdb1 /media/My-Passport
Then unmount the disk as root su umount /media/My-Passport
Then as a normal user mount it using the pmount wrapper for mount with the executable bit set for ALL files.
pmount --fmask 077 -d -e /dev/sdb1 My-Passport
fmask of 0 makes everything executable. pmount man claims that VFAT supports per file umask. B…

RAW record audio streams playing thorugh the PC speakers

RAW record audio streams playing in browsers like Firefox, Chromium or any streaming player like Quicktime, Realplayer, Helixplayer etc.
The best way to copy the audio streams available through the PC speakers is to stream copy through Pulse in Ubuntu.
Lucid Lynx 10.04 and Maverick Meerkat 10.10
These instructions describe how to record any audio stream that are piped through to your sound system (e.g., external speakers, headphones) using Audacity. Any KDE recording software should work. For the purposes of this example, the audio (voice, music, or soundtrack) player will be Sonic Visualiser but could be any sound source (e.g., MPlayer, VLC, Firefox Flash video, MIDI device). The "PulseAudio Volume Control" program is not installed by default, but can be installed by typing the command sudo apt-get install pavucontrol from a terminal window, or using the System Settings' Software Management to install the pavucontrol package. 1. Click the K menu. 2. Click Multimedia » PulseA…