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VAGUE  January 2017

VAGUE January 2017


Linux_adult_swim Meeting today, Monday January 2nd, 5 PM at 40 Washington Street...


Paul Flint <[log in to unmask]>


Vermont Area Group of Unix Enthusiasts <[log in to unmask]>


Mon, 2 Jan 2017 10:22:05 -0500





TEXT/PLAIN (374 lines)

Greetings List Lurkers,

The new year begins cold here in Barre this AM, and hours before our 
arrival back from the big family party in Westchester, NY (my sister was 
the ultimate dependent deduction, born on the 31st of December), the 
pellet furnace failed in a very unique way... Thus, as is typical, I find 
myself huddled up to my faithful pellet stove which is operating at max 
and consuming pellets like there is no tomorrow.  Anyway, on to the 
projects that border my reality.

...The aftermath
Some simple rules of Raspberryt Pi are in order:
1. Always Use a high current power supply.
2. Be aware of the bios differences.
3. Always shrink before duplication to same size media.
4. Format MS Dos regions on a real Micro$oft machine.

I did not expect to lead with the duplication of Raspberry Pi SD cards to 
take a week, but that was before I got involved with duplicating a Yarger 
Production, the famous Pellergy Video Looper:

I am sorry to say, that this simple process of SD card duplication has turned 
into a week of agony, but it got done.


Two meetings ago we put into Dave-the-Geek's hands a Kindle, with the hope 
that his following the master Kindlenista, Joe Hart, would get some distro 
booting on the Kindle here in Barre City.  This meeting we are gonna try 
to concentrate on the KLF dream of a Debian Kindle.  The new batch of 
kindles (at $33.00 each) came in, one was shipped to the Kindlenista 
himself and he made the magic work, and he reports that he has Linux 

Joe has worked the magic and he is now officially ahead of me. I have not had 
the time to test out this incredible hack, and it needs to be tested, so I am 
enlisting DTG to help. I think that Joe is going to do some testing using this 
method, which needs to be translated to a more clearly defined wiki. 
That will be the task of the meeting today...

I am becoming convinced that there could be a commercial opportunity in 
customizing kindles...

Speaking of the Hart, he was right that cheap Kindles are still there!
They are even available in color.  The price went up three bucks to $39.00 
and if you want you can get one at staples, but it will cost you an extra 
10 bucks... get one now!

I really want a version of the Universal Insight Virtual Realty Glasses for the 
Kindle.  3d Teleconferencing way cool!  Anybody see such a thing?


As mentioned above we have had good success in figuring out how to open it to 
the world.  It turns out that Kimball Library in Randolph currently maintains a 
Koha server for its open source library management system.

Supertech librarian Jessamyn West guided us on how to proceed vis-a-vis 
the State of Vermont Department of Information and Innovation (SoV DII) 
who currently control the Vermont Library Network.  Apparently a properly 
delivered email is all you need to get destination routing. So we get this 
working and deliver the trantor v 1.3 machine to the Aldrich, swap it with 
the existing 0.015 system, set up static IP, avahi bonjour and things may 
actually be accessible via DNS for the world. Well a fellow can dream...

This project is still operating in development at the library and in this 
new year we intend to figure out how to open it to the world.  In the 
coming week we are going to get hold of Chip Bacon, an IT security 
specialist over at Norwich University and a part time consultant at the 
Kimball library.  Chip has apparently already figured out how to get DII 
to route inbound destinations.

If anyone has his contact information (beyond Linked In, which Chip uses 
infrequently :^) I would be very happy to have it, but intend to get hold 
of him in this new year.  I will rely heavily on what he sent in to DII on 
behalf of the Aldrich library trantor server.  With luck we can get an 
open destination to this server.

Once this is accomplished we will switch to the excellent hardware 
platform that Marius delivered. This production case contains both 
USB2.0/3.0 and and a DVDRW. This will be the production device. The first 
and second passes for Trantor are done. The second pass, is in the Aldrich 
Public library for evaluation.  We are indeed using one of the original 
Gates Foundation grant based Dell machines. Sarah the librarian wanted the 
actual pictures to be hot, they are now. So it is time to develop a 
development cycle... The vision of a restful website remains:

- Take the existing code
- edit it with enki, a restful editor almost built for the job.
   (a most difficult to install but rewarding bit of software)
- if necessary propagate the change using a shell script
   (thank god for sed and awk)
- run " mkitso" which builds new web site from files
- check out the result...
- lather rinse repeat...

The hard part of this turns out to be getting:
1. enki running with the preview mode working
    (invaluable once running)
2. getting sphinx running or maybe more accurately
3. making the system "sane" - a menu choice.

As we said about enki.  The ticket at this time appears to be to run under 
Linux Mint 18 as opposed to Ubuntu Trusty. The sad trick here is that enki 
is oriented towards use in a Red Hat environment...

Configuration Management:
As mentioned above, the trantor project now uses the new visualbash include 
function to load up various scripts full-o-functional goodness. We are 
maintaining the Trantor project on Github:

As discussed I continue to hack this into some type of organized format to put 
up on git hub, as this is something that will please both Chris Yarger and 
Kevin Cole.  I really am gonna get to this.

The trantor project benefits itself as you can cut DVDs and USBs with great 
ease and facility. ("Rick Roll version")

Restful Web Site: Thanks to sphinx, we actually now have a complete set of 
disks starting from LXFDVD154, we sent Neil at Linux Format, an email in 
an attempt to expanding trantor to include all the Linux Format DVDs since 
they started publication.  Maybe in the new year we will gain a response 
from London.  As it is installed at the Aldrich, next trick is to get 
trantor on the public web. So the test of trantor up and running. If you 
want to see a preview try:

Again, sphinx now rocks my world.  I am convinces the trick to sphinx and 
ReST in general is enki, which is a pain to install.  I am getting 
interest from some parties in contributing more stuff to trantor.  Do not 
be bashful (pun?). let me know if you want something faithfully curated 
and The real question here is should I simply rebuild based 
upon sphinx?  We could do it all in...


In the new year we want to follow up on the interesting angle to deploy 
TechnoRubble at Libraries.  J West came up with this angle and I would 
very much like to set up at Kimball and see if this would work.  Now that 
celebrating the holidays is done maybe we can get back to this.  This 
meeting we are gonna finish untangling TechnoRubble out of the big haul of 
stuff the picking at CVSWD got.

- The Website,

The new donation letter has been updated, but not used yet...

Again, we need more TechnoRubble.  The TechnoRubble untangling and packing is 
part of that effort. Part of this effort was the donation letter. The idea is 
to get people to mail their TechnoRubble to us in a USPS Flat Rate Box. I am 
going to complete the donation process page as soon as I can and post it.

VISUAL BASH: Rather than clean up my new years resolution for Visual Bash 
is to build the Menubot function, which will include the use of zenity for 
a gui interface, (see the Bash Zenity Integration page: 
:^) beyond this we really need to clean up the VisualBash page.  Now that 
we have the "include" function that is similar to the one in python (C and 
a lota other languages :^) we need to git this.

The "SanityScript" is born but needs love.  The problem is that I cannot 
resist the challenge of the menu generator "" that will allow 
you to test stub your "shi" files with a crude but working "sh".  Who 
knows where we go from there?

I will likely be needing to reorganize all of the visual bash functions into 
functional includes...  Possible include files are:

- ianda.shi  - Identification and Authorization
- dvdusb.shi - DVD/USB utilities
- sanity.shi - System sanity tests
- maint.shi  - Maintenance includes
- ops.shi    - Operational includes
- dev.shi    - Development includes
- sphinx.shi - Sphinx generator includes
- tiddle.shi - Tiddle includes...

I am ulikely to get any of this done during the meeting.  But 2017 may be 
the year of VisualBash.

Visualbash is really fun to work on...

TADA Is there someone who can help with this project? We really neerd to 
exploit Audio Video from the meeting in a better way.  How can we move 
BOSI TV towards this goal line? The Adult Swim video network, soon to be 
the "TADA Show" (The Adult Development Actity?) was clearly Effin's 
project.  Is there a recursive acronym in here somewhere?

Hopefully this will be discussed on:


The PiTchBox and 3Dprint are related because I really need a plastic bezel for 
the front of the box, and I want a 3Dprinter to print it, and the Raspberry Pi 
based octoprint device is central to the operation of the 3Dprinter.

Without a doubt the greatest waste of Flint time and money on the planet!

Bad money after good, we have in hand the new model 3D printer.
That said, we had great luck with openscad, brother Kevin's design 
software. We got this damn thing to the point that I can produce the 
design of bezels I need for the PiTchBox. Sadly I cannot print them 
because the printer we have is screwed up. Will the new one work better? 
Thinking about inviting Toby from Filabot over and asking for some help. 
This machine has only seen maybe 5 hours of actual operation is that this 
lasted about ten days. Why is this so damn hard?

The 3Decology constructed around the HICTOP Prusa I3 3D Desktop Printer, has 
helped a lot, at least there is a place to store the tools this thing needs. 
The take away here is that 3D infrastructure is important to facilitate 
printing.  But more important is the ability to render designs from the head 
into products.

I am gonna learn this product or perish n the process.  I need Bezels for the 

Another new years resolution is to show Bit Ed one of the DC-DC 
converters, they are nifty, I will try desperately to bring one today if I 
can find one.

To summarize, the meeting today is again at 40 Washington Street, Barre, VT 

Topics for discussion as usual remain:

- Open Source Educational Human Development
   I am working on an idea... I am changing the priority of our
   eternal needs, and placing education first.

- Maker Movement A Maker Space in Barre?  Why not? Could it be that the
   commercial power centers do not yet appreciate the value?  I need to
   revise my paper on this subject and get it out to Lucas Jensen
   who has good ideas about a Barre Maker Space.  Why not do digital stone?

- Move BOSI to become more git centric... develop gittlywiki... working!
   check out tiddlywiki5 here:
   We still need to convert... Yea buddy...  Shut up Effin.

- Blue Sky R&D, but in Vermont it will be Gun-metal Grey Sky(c) R&D.

- I fought the DREK and the DREK continues to win.  Remember, What
   really is holds us back is DREK!!!  DREK is what happens to your
   workspace (both hardware and  software) when you fail to put stuff
   away, or you let your friends or relatives use it.  This is a cosmic
   law.  I am still fighting the DREK.  How to get over it?  The secret
   may be empty pellet bags.  The new year will tell.

These five points are becomming almost like policy!

Anyway, we have the technology and we will have Pizza tonight 5-7 at Hedding 

This is the official notice of the Barre Open Systems Institute (BOSI) Adult 
Swim. For those coming in via the Google Plus and the Internet, and there are 
folks who are gonna try, the swim stars at 6:00 PM EST.

Our ongoing major objective is to continue to try to figure out how to invest 
the time and resources to turn the Barre Open Systems Institute into more than 
just the Adult Swim technical clinic and more into a real learning facility. 
One direction we have been working on is to begin thinking about classes. The 
curriculum that I am most interested in is teaching documentation.

Once again, the goal of the meeting shall be as usual, to get organized and try 
to get the various projects moving forward, despite DREK. We continue to wonder 
about how to build the BOSI curriculum to this webpage:

*** Note this is broke as of this newsletter ****, Take a look if you dare...

Remember, the BOSI Adult Swim is essentially about helping out fellow users of 
open source products in a clinic environment.  Despite my very best of 
intentions, the Adult Swim is really almost a perpetual Linux install-fest, and 
only secondarily a learning environment,

The ever growing list of projects (now on our web site :^) includes:
- - A Docker copy of VM370
- - The Kindle Liberation Front
- - A pythonic interface to Income Tax?
- - Ok, this is a real project eh?
- - What happens when you combine Bash and Zenity?
- - ok, it is on the list.
- - jesum they love this robot
- - monitor that pellet furnace
- - moving in the arduino groove
- - to get better at Javascript
-  - Temperature Sensors Project
- - The quest for Roberts Rules -
- - Yea, I am not kidding...
- - remedial raw mrtg for the slow...
- - all versions
- - maybe a very cool project.
- - oh please let me be organized!
- - this may be the least organized
    site ever!
- - A big noble idea.
- - A less noble idea to feed the
   big idea...
- - is tiddlywiki5 the answer?

Otherwise, Barre indeed remains a great venue for a Linux and Open Source 
Software discussion and general system rejuvenation. Expect to be remotely 
preached at on the various topics of Open Source and how I am confident it 
shall cure all the evils and ills of this wicked world.  In a perfect meeting, 
people would come in, sit down, see the stuff we have been doing and hopefully 
help us get the DIY stuff we are doing done, or maybe just fix a laptop.

So, do not forget that the Barre library stocks "Linux Format", and the latest 
issue is on the shelf, and it is good.  The DVD's are available to checkout and 
copy, we shall to continue provide copies and isos of each and every one. I am 
continuing to duplicate about a years worth of DVD's which is quite a task. You 
may want to watch this space for developments.

Anyway, come and do open source stuff. For more information about the BOSI 
Adult Swim meeting time and location try this:

*** Note this is broke as of this newsletter ****

Show up at Hedding UMC if you have questions or are interested in Linux or the 
concept of free and open systems.  Again, we are in the basement of the Hedding 
UMC facility which is actually working out pretty well.

Somehow we need to make progress not more projects!!!

If you wish to be included on the "Linux_adult_swim" mailing list, send a
response to this note.

This is Flint signing off... I gotta go and get the heat working here at 
the Casa.

I will continue to refactor this newsletter at some point in the future (do not 
hold your breath :^)...

Kindest Regards,

Paul Flint
(802) 479-2360
(802) 595-9365 Cell

Based upon email reliability concerns,
please send an acknowledgment in response to this note.

Paul Flint
Barre Open Systems Institute
17 Averill Street
Barre, VT
skype: flintinfotech
Work: (202) 537-0480

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