Archive for July, 2005

Current preferences for RSS readers

Friday, July 29th, 2005

I’ve been using RSS readers for a couple of years now to try to manage the ‘River of News’.

This roughly follows the order in which I explored the world of aggregators.

  • AmphetaDesk — web-based, runs on a server somewhere, perl-based. A nice solid news aggregator. There is a patch, AmphetaOutlines that improves the look-n-feel which I used. The only downside is it only supports RSS and not ATOM. It looks like RSS is going to win, but there are some sites out there (notably google’s blogspot) that only provide ATOM feeds. I’ve used Amphetadesk the longest so far.
  • Sage, Thunderbird and other mozilla plugins — nice but I don’t really know when it updates.
  • Liferea — Linux desktop, gnome-based. Nice but I found it a little buggy. It likely has improved since I last looked.
  • Straw — Linux desktop, gnome-based. A nice client side application. The downside is it is client based and sometimes I want to check news while away from the my primary laptop.
  • — A no-cost, web-based service. That’s what I use these days.
  • Various Portals — Yahoo!, MSN, Google, etc. While they do support adding RSS feeds, I just don’t like how they clutter it up with other random stuff and ads. Give it a try, you may like it.

My blogroll is in various formats is available here.


Friday, July 29th, 2005

I attended the first meeting of the new NH Python SIG (PySIG) in Manchester last night. About 13 folks interested in programming in python.

My two pet projects that I’d like to write in python are “pull info from a spreadsheet and set title, description, tags, etc on specific photos already hosted on” (to support this genealogy project) and “pull info from a Zoph (nice, but defunct) web/MySQL-based photo organizer and dump it into the next great photo organizer (F-Stop? something else?) without loosing too much data”

This Week’s bookmarks

Sunday, July 24th, 2005

Shared bookmarks for user

w32codecs for ubuntu ‘hoary’

Friday, July 22nd, 2005

The stock Ubuntu repositories don’t include the w32codecs (wmvdmod.dll, etc) so xine, mplayer can play WMV and other formats. Basically the package puts 127 DLLs in /usr/lib/w32codecs.

So, I temporarily added the following line to my /etc/apt/sources.list

deb testing main

And then did this:

apt-get update && apt-get install w32codecs

I then commented that line out since and apt-get upgrade would have picked up a bunch of updated packages from that repository.

Migrating to Ubuntu Hoary on my laptop

Thursday, July 21st, 2005

I’ve been running Debian/Sarge (now the stable branch) on my laptop for quite a while now and its time to try a new distro for dailyl use — Ubuntu. This week I’ve been running Ubuntu ‘Hoary’ and the transition has been very smooth.

The only configuration issue was I wanted to use ALSA on this HP Compaq nc6000 laptop. The install did detect the sound device, but did separate the speaker from
the headphone controls.

phzi on #ubuntu pointed me to the unofficial, specifically the section configuresoundproperly. Those instructions were perfect.

ipodder (v2.1) on Ubuntu ‘Hoary’

Thursday, July 21st, 2005

I’d upgraded to the latest iPodder (v2.1) on my Ubuntu (‘Hoary’) laptop today.

# tar jxvf iPodder-linux-2.1.tar.bz2

# cd iPodder-linux

# sudo ./

(take the defaults)

The only glitch is wx libraries aren’t in the default PYTHONPATH, so set this environment variable either at the command line, or pop it in ~/.bashrc

export PYTHONPATH=/usr/lib/python2.4/site-packages/wx-2.5.3-gtk2-unicode/:$PYTHONPATH-unicode:$PYTHONPATH

Now clean up a little bit…

$ cd ../

$ rm -rf iPodder-linux iPodder-linux-2.1.tar.bz2

Now, you are all set to start iPodder!

$ (nohup iPodder&) # or add it to a menu bar button

Getting closer to not needing any special knowledge to get iPodder running on a GNU/Linux distro…

- – - – -

Just for searchers, this is the problem you see if you don’t set the PYTHONPATH:

$ iPodder
Traceback (most recent call last):
File "", line 38, in ?
import iPodderWindows
File "/opt/iPodder/", line 4, in ?
import listctrl as listmix
File "/opt/iPodder/", line 296, in ?
AttributeError: 'module' object has no attribute 'PyEventBinder'

2 unusual New Hampshire license plates

Monday, July 18th, 2005


Originally uploaded by marcn.


Originally uploaded by marcn.

“pen iz” and “bloggin” — both seen in Nashua, NH in the last week or so.

This Week’s bookmarks

Monday, July 18th, 2005

Shared bookmarks for user

Bull Surname Genealogy

Thursday, July 14th, 2005

The 138th Annual William Bull & Sarah Wells picnic is coming up in the next few weeks and I’ve been exchanging email with some distant cousins about ways to improve participation with the Bull Association and contribute genealogy info.

If you have any photos or scans of images having to do with the Bull picnic or any of the Bull descendants, please get a free account and join the groups below. Once you have joined those groups, you’ll be able to add your photos to the following groups:

Additionally, there is now a Bull Surname Genealogy wiki for contributing genealogical information. Of course from the wiki you can display and link to images you have uploaded to

This Week’s bookmarks

Monday, July 11th, 2005

Shared bookmarks for user