Archive for Techspeak

Recycling books

It all started with me reading Gaunt’s Ghosts and the omnibus being to big to hold comfortably in one hand. That combined with the fact that Hanna does not like me to read in bed (the light disturbs her) made me get Stanza for the iphone. I didn’t think I would like to read electronically as I have this deep love of books, I love the feel of a new book and the smell of books. As it turns out I love to read books more than I love the physical book, and I am now fully converted to reading electronically.

The complete shift happened when I bought my kindle. E-ink is the best and I love reading on my kindle. I also love having the book available and searcheable on my kindle, on my iPhone and on my Mac, never have cross referencing and prepping been easier. Not to mention how much lighter my bag is.

I also realised that apart from saving my aching shoulders, I am also saving loads of bookshelf space and possibly in the end a few trees as move from paper to digital ink.

Now as I survey my bookshelf I find several books that I wish I could trade in for a kindle version. So I have decided to try the following: If you gift me one of the following books (It is very easy click on the link, buy as a gift, enter my email address as recipient) I will send you the physical book (which in every case costs more than the kindlebook). If it is one of the larger volumes (or if you live outside of the EU) we’ll discuss postage.

Here are the books:

[amazon_link id="B001GCUCHM" target="_blank" ]What Would Jesus Deconstruct?: The Good News of Postmodernism for the Church[/amazon_link] [amazon_link id="B0010SIPOY" target="_blank" ]Surprised by Hope[/amazon_link] [amazon_link id="B002U80FU0" target="_blank" ]Free of Charge[/amazon_link] [amazon_link id="B001DL6G26" target="_blank" ]The End of Memory: Remembering Rightly in a Violent World[/amazon_link] [amazon_link id="B000SEOC1G" target="_blank" ]The Secret Message of Jesus: Uncovering the Truth that Could Change Everything[/amazon_link] [amazon_link id="B001ANYC1E" target="_blank" ]Great Emergence, The: How Christianity Is Changing and Why (emersion: Emergent Village resources for communities of faith)[/amazon_link] [amazon_link id="B00194ESYA" target="_blank" ]The New Christians: Dispatches from the Emergent Frontier[/amazon_link] [amazon_link id="B000MAHCKO" target="_blank" ]A Generous Orthodoxy: By celebrating strengths of many traditions in the church (and beyond), this book will seek to communicate a 'generous orthodoxy.'[/amazon_link] [amazon_link id="B003JMFDMG" target="_blank" ]The Resurrection of the Son of God[/amazon_link] [amazon_link id="B001F7B5LA" target="_blank" ]Emergent Manifesto of Hope, An[/amazon_link]

(I know the last one (emergent manifesto)  isn’t in the picture above but the amazon link is the correct book)

Please help me empty my bookshelf and to fill my kindle….

Free Bible Software, anyone?

So here I am with my new Macbook and with a new OS I need to find good solid bible software. I need a good McBible or perhaps it should be called iBible.

I started out with MacSword. I have always loved the Sword project as it is GPL and therefore it comes at no cost. Gnome Sword is easy to use and very versatile but on the mac sadly my NRSV, NIV and Message would not work properly (no surprise as I compiled them from the Biblegateway website). In all fairness I have to say I still loved the layout and serene simplicity of macsword and won’t be removing it from my harddrive anytime soon.

So I decided to go for Accordance. Accordance is much more expensive (especially compared to MacSword at zero cost). As far as I can tell accordance is a brilliant piece of software and I am enjoying it fully and you can read a full review of the software here. Incidently if you make a comment on that article before 5th of December you stand a chance of winning a free copy of accordance introductory library package.

Now if I could only figure out how to put a bible on my new red iPod that my precious wife got for my birthday….

It's MY IPod!

I have a brand new Macbook Pro, I had the older model that I bought just a few weeks before they released the new model. It was a great machine, great specs, great performance. But as the new model came out I got really sad. My machine was still a great machine but not as great as the new one. I called the store and they agreed to replace it and just as a bonus we where going to get the great deal with a free IPod Nano as well.

As this unfolds it turns out it took them two weeks for the macbooks to arrive at the store. And so we are no longer eligeble for the IPod deal. I go to the store disappointed and demand my IPod. The poor fellow in the store try to explain to me that it isn’t that he doesn’t want to give me an IPod, but he can not. I get flustered and in my mind I think I have a right to have a free IPod, after all didn’t everyone else who paid ridiculous amount of money for a mac get one. The Apple representative kindly reminds me that we are allready getting a £400 discount because we are students. I know he is right but I do not want to acknowledge it.

With the same attitude my youngest daughter has when she lies on the floor kicking and screaming to get ice cream just before dinner. I feel had. Why do I never get the good deal? Why do I never win the lottery (but you never play …. THAT’S NOT THE POINT)? I wan’t to scream out: IT’S NOT FAIR!

A quiet voice in my head reminds me of people starving in Africa and homeless people right outside this building of commercialism but the child within screams in outrage and then bargains. Yes, but I am getting a RED IPod that means at least some of the money is given to aids research.

At that outrageously ridiculous argument the card house in my mind crumbles and I let go. I am walking out of the store with a fantastic computer, the best one I have ever owned. Letting go of my silly notion of having my way frees me up to enjoy what I actually have. Letting go of what could have been, lets me just savor what is! Richard Foster calls this the freedom of submission and he states “In the discipline of Submission we are released to drop the matter, forget it. Frankly, most things in life are not nearly as important as we think they are.”1.

  1. Foster, Richard J. The Celebration of Discipline (San Francisco: Harper, 1998) p. 111 []

A cool cat

Almost a year ago I bought my [[cuecat]] through Librarything. Hanna was livid, why would I spend money on a barcode scanner??

As we get ready for our college Collectanea inspection we dusted of our cuecat and scanned in every book in our library into Alexandria, a library program.

Now our whole bookshelf is organised on the computer and also uploaded to Librarything all done in only a day.

A cool cat

Almost a year ago I bought my [[cuecat]] through Librarything. Hanna was livid, why would I spend money on a barcode scanner??

As we get ready for our college Collectanea inspection we dusted of our cuecat and scanned in every book in our library into Alexandria, a library program.

Now our whole bookshelf is organised on the computer and also uploaded to Librarything all done in only a day.

Homeless again….

So it is kind of fitting, we started our mission trip in Latvia 18 months ago living in the backroom of a church and now I am again living in one of the church offices (again thank God that the girls are not here for it, but are enjoying a sunny beach in Croatia).

I loose my bearings when I don’t have my own little space with my own things around me, it becaomes hard to concentrate on those daily things and I can’t seem to find the motivation for much anything.

I’ve played a lot of Frets On Fire in the last few days (Got it set up on my laptop with a USB keyboard to boot). And I started making some Christian songs for FoF. The first one done is [[Audio Adrenaline]] – Man of God wich will be made available for the close commuinity of guitar freaks at “Gitarrhaket“.

Tomorrow I will have the apartment cleared out and hopefully Friday night or Saturday lunch I will be back in the apartement.

iPod shuffle trouble in Feisty and an easy fix!

Yesterday at Hannas request I gave her an apple and a hug for her birthday. It turns out Hannas brand new pink iPod shuffle doesn’t play well in Ubuntu Feisty Fawn despite what a superficial google scan might tell you.

Jump straight to the summary if you are impatient….

I tried to add songs to it with Rythmbox, Banshee, gtkpod, gtkpod-aac all these applications could add songs but none of them played (and yes I first converted my precious ogg files into mp3)

It turns out the device needs to be initialized on a windows machine with iTunes installed, so off I went to hunt for windows machines, luckily I realized that I have not yet formated a windows partition on one of my laptops so I was off to a good start. After that I tried to add songs to the iPod again with these various programs and while I could add songs some songs played and others didn’t and when I removed songs they dissapeared from all the programs but still played in the shuffle. Aaaargh and frustration.

As I was trying to install iTunes in crossover office and realizing that the version that works with crossover is to old for the shuffle I was ready to toss the thing and jump off a cliff when I found this little python script. Thank God for hackers! It is a tiny script that sits on your iPod and when you copied the mp3 files over to your shuffle in any directory you like with any name you want, you just run the script and viola

presto working iPod shuffle.

Summary

  1. Initialize (or restore if you allready have stuff on it) the iPod shuffle in iTunes on a windoze machine
  2. Copy all the music you want in mp3 format (get SoundConverter with ‘apt-get install soundconverter‘ if your files are in other formats) to your iPod shuffle in nautilus
    using any file structure that makes sense to you
  3. Copy in the rebuild-db.py script to the root of your iPod shuffle and double click it in nautilus (and select run)
  4. Eject your iPod shuffle and enjoy your music

iPod shuffle trouble in Feisty and an easy fix!

Yesterday at Hannas request I gave her an apple and a hug for her birthday. It turns out Hannas brand new pink iPod shuffle doesn’t play well in Ubuntu Feisty Fawn despite what a superficial google scan might tell you.

Jump straight to the summary if you are impatient….

I tried to add songs to it with Rythmbox, Banshee, gtkpod, gtkpod-aac all these applications could add songs but none of them played (and yes I first converted my precious ogg files into mp3)

It turns out the device needs to be initialized on a windows machine with iTunes installed, so off I went to hunt for windows machines, luckily I realized that I have not yet formated a windows partition on one of my laptops so I was off to a good start. After that I tried to add songs to the iPod again with these various programs and while I could add songs some songs played and others didn’t and when I removed songs they dissapeared from all the programs but still played in the shuffle. Aaaargh and frustration.

As I was trying to install iTunes in crossover office and realizing that the version that works with crossover is to old for the shuffle I was ready to toss the thing and jump off a cliff when I found this little python script. Thank God for hackers! It is a tiny script that sits on your iPod and when you copied the mp3 files over to your shuffle in any directory you like with any name you want, you just run the script and viola

presto working iPod shuffle.

Summary

  1. Initialize (or restore if you allready have stuff on it) the iPod shuffle in iTunes on a windoze machine
  2. Copy all the music you want in mp3 format (get SoundConverter with ‘apt-get install soundconverter‘ if your files are in other formats) to your iPod shuffle in nautilus
    using any file structure that makes sense to you
  3. Copy in the rebuild-db.py script to the root of your iPod shuffle and double click it in nautilus (and select run)
  4. Eject your iPod shuffle and enjoy your music

iPod shuffle trouble in Feisty and an easy fix!

Yesterday at Hannas request I gave her an apple and a hug for her birthday. It turns out Hannas brand new pink iPod shuffle doesn’t play well in Ubuntu Feisty Fawn despite what a superficial google scan might tell you.

Jump straight to the summary if you are impatient….

I tried to add songs to it with Rythmbox, Banshee, gtkpod, gtkpod-aac all these applications could add songs but none of them played (and yes I first converted my precious ogg files into mp3)

It turns out the device needs to be initialized on a windows machine with iTunes installed, so off I went to hunt for windows machines, luckily I realized that I have not yet formated a windows partition on one of my laptops so I was off to a good start. After that I tried to add songs to the iPod again with these various programs and while I could add songs some songs played and others didn’t and when I removed songs they dissapeared from all the programs but still played in the shuffle. Aaaargh and frustration.

As I was trying to install iTunes in crossover office and realizing that the version that works with crossover is to old for the shuffle I was ready to toss the thing and jump off a cliff when I found this little python script. Thank God for hackers! It is a tiny script that sits on your iPod and when you copied the mp3 files over to your shuffle in any directory you like with any name you want, you just run the script and viola

presto working iPod shuffle.

Summary

  1. Initialize (or restore if you allready have stuff on it) the iPod shuffle in iTunes on a windoze machine
  2. Copy all the music you want in mp3 format (get SoundConverter with ‘apt-get install soundconverter‘ if your files are in other formats) to your iPod shuffle in nautilus
    using any file structure that makes sense to you
  3. Copy in the rebuild-db.py script to the root of your iPod shuffle and double click it in nautilus (and select run)
  4. Eject your iPod shuffle and enjoy your music

For all of you about to rock, I salute you!

PICT1699Last night when Hanna went to her small group I didn’t know what to do with myself I was bored… When I asked Hanna what to do she said whatever you do, have fun!

So I decided to blow the evening off with something fun. I Downloaded [[Frets on Fire]]1 and hoped it would have at least half an hour entertainment value. I was wrong, I was sooo wrong, I was hooked!

I have heard from Various people that guitar hero was supposed to be fun, I was sceptical. I was even more sceptical that an open source version using your keyboard as a guitar could be any fun at all. But it was. Loads of fun. Due to the game idea being extremely simple and the Frets on Fire unique keyboard setup and stance, It RAWKS!

I urge you, if you have ever been into playing music, if you love rock, download your copy today and rock on.

A few words of caution:

  • You will get addicted
  • You will get pain in your fingers
  • You might break your keyboard
  • You WILL look very silly.
  1. An open source guitar hero clone []
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