I've been known to accidentally leave a stream of music running all night when I'm not there to listen to it anymore. That wastes bandwidth and energy.

Here's a quick tip to prevent from happening, by causing any music playing to be turned off at 7:00 pm each night.

On Ubuntu Linux, add these lines to /etc/crontab. You can edit this file with gksudo gedit /etc/crontab:

Note that "rhythmbox" is the name of the music players I use. Change as needed.

# stop streams from playing all night.
0 19 * * Mon-Fri killall --quiet rhythmbox

If you need to adjust the time, the first two columns of numbers are the minutes and hour columns.

Have fun!

Thinkpad T23 inverter replacement A small hard drive is a like a small house. Less to clean. Yesterday I got a visual alert that my drive was 99% full (Thanks for the hint, Ubuntu!).

I responded immediately in two ways. First, I immediately searched Ebay for hard drives that were are least 60 GB in size. That would upgrade my current one by about 50 Gigs.

Second, I started looking for junk to get rid of.

A short time later I'd found 800 megs of stuff I was happy to be living without, and I canceled the E-bay search.

A bigger drive may allow me to store more, but it also allows me to make a larger mess, lose more in a crash, and anything that involves looking at the whole disk will take longer, like a search, backup, or restore procedure.

Checking E-mail can be a big distraction when I'm involved in a task and just want to send an email and move on. Sometimes if I have new e-mail, I just don't even want to know.

Sure, I could close my eyes while the Inbox opens and I press "Control-N" for the new message window, but I've found a method for opening just the "Compose Message" window without first opening the Inbox.

The "trick" is open the program as if an email address had been clicked on a web page. Many e-mail programs support this kind of integration. With Thunderbird, the following can be entered in the "Run Box" on Linux, usually invoked with "Alt-F2"

mozilla-thunderbird 'mailto:'

That directly opens the "Compose New Message" window, without loading the rest of the application.

My eyes have been opened to new productivity.

I recently gave a presentation about the culture and values of open source at a local church

I roughly covered the following bullet points. I've linked to points to pages with further context.

Thanks to all who attended and helped out!

In college I got the opportunity to help film a TV production using an ingenious low budget budget dolly. ( the following page about the handy-cam was taken from Bill Nixdorf's website at geocities. )


Made from 1 1/2" square tubing and a wheel chair, this camera mount was designed as an economical alternative to renting a Dolly Cart & Tracks. The placement of the center pivots allows a video camera to be raised and lowered while the center of the image remains constant. Other adjustments can be made in the standard tripod head attachment.

Mark can be seen stage left on the set of the ANYTHING GOES show. He is getting ready to tape the first guest of the show with the new HANDY-CAM camera-mount.

It is the end of the show and Mark has only seconds to roll across the set and back while capturing a clean shot of all the guests. Mark became first HandyCam Operator and Director of Videography due to his excelent coordination, determination, and impressive results.

A long cord extends to the ceiling and is recoiled by a counter weight system as Mark wheels the HANDY-CAM back stage-left.