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I’m an Android guy, and I like customizing my phone. The stock launcher doesn’t give me enough options, so I have been using Nova Launcher. And that’s since at least 2013, and across multiple phones.

Until now.

TeslaCoil software, the manufacturer, just sold out to an analytics company. There are a lot of words in press releases about independence and not siphoning data. I also know that Branch bought them for a reason, so I assume that the data will be flowing to the analytics company, and will be sold to the highesr bidder, somewhere down the road. Unhappy about that.

So I dropped Nova Launcher and picked up Hyperion. Different product, of course, but the end result is very similar. One minor tweak is absent, and I can live without that. My data will presumably be safer going forward.

I don’t blame TeslaCoil for selling out. Doesn’t mean I have to keep on using them – that’s the price of freedom.

And then I bought the Plus version of Hyperion using Google money, which I got from answering Google Rewards surveys. So I sold information to Google to protect information from going to Branch.

There are three or four big consolidators of data. Google, Amazon, Microsoft, maybe Facebook. Lots of others (Oracle bought Cerner!), but those are the biggies. They are all sucking data from you daily. I chose to align with Google as my primary. Still use Microsoft (though not Windows 11) and Amazon (Prime has many benefits, which encourage more purchases and data gathering). I stay away from Facebook.

I also use AdGuard and multiple ad-blockers. I may be selling my information, but I’m selling it dearly.

Don’t disable Bluetooth using your Bluetooth mouse. It works one direction, not the other.

Nothing terrible – grab another mouse, turn it on again. But on a desktop with no trackpad, or for somebody with no spare meeses, this could be problematic.

You’re welcome. And yes, your assumption about how I came to know this sage advice is correct.

By strange coincidence, Bettie is watching “A Tale of Two Cities”, the source of “It was the best of times; it was the worst of times”.

It’s not the worst, despite the title, but it’s not the best.

One of my treasured pieces of ancient electronics is my Palm Pilot, a Tungsten E. This was before smart phones. It was also before non-volatile ram, which was introduced with the E2, which Bettie has (and uses). So I have to keep mine charged, which I have done for years. Until now. Tonight, when I plugged it in, I found out the default year for the calendar is 2003. And I found out that I had lost all the stuff I had on there. Bummer.

What was it? Lists of important Bible verses. Some notes I had taken for myself at a significant time of my life. Shirt sizes. Stuff. And now it’s gone.

A good lesson on the transience of things, and the need to pay attention to the passage of time.

He’s not totally right, but he’s also not totally wrong.

At least for now.

My PC died last summer, and I got a whomping big workstation that was going to be my Linux base, with tons of virtual machines hung off it.

I did make one virtual machine, and it ran nicely.  But I ended up fighting with Fedora more than I got work done – well, that’s the filtered memory.

Tonight, when I tried to start it up, I saw this:

Cannot open access to console, the root account is locked

I tried some things, and poked around, and got frustrated, and now I’m typing this on Windows.  Bye, Linux.  I’ll make some virtual machines to play with Linux, but my life is too short spending it wondering if the latest updates will crash things (and I still don’t know what caused this crash).

At work, I tried running Linux on my laptop for months before giving in and going the Microsoft way.  History apparently repeated itself.

Welcome back, Steve.

It was the worst of times, it was the best of times.

My 11-year-old mobo died. Sad day.  And I wasn’t going to replace the board to preserve the old CPU, memory, and graphics card. I was ready for a new toy.

This toy is a beast. A Dell Precision Tower 7910, outfitted with 2 x 8-core Xeons.  128G memory. 500G SSD and a 10T spinning metal drive for slower things.  I’m planning on running a bunch of VMs on this, having them talk, setting up a house wiki, etc.  Much etc.

The first box got lost (lifted?) between the local package delivery service and my house. The nice folks at MET Servers shipped out the new one while still fighting with the shipping company over what happened to the original.  Plus, they got me overnight shipping tossed in! Thanks, Edwar.

Came in this morning, and I took a break from work to unpack it.  Started it up, made sure it worked, and had to power it off because it was distracting me from my regular job.

Since then, I have installed Fedora Server 30, installed the virtualization software (KVM), added and mounted the spinning rust drive (a NewEgg purchase).  I’m keeping the base machine a command-line box.  GUIs will be for the VMs.  So I had to use lynx to download the graphical workstation ISO – and it worked.  I’m still doing my Google research on another PC, but it’s working.

There are benefits to having enthusiastically worked in the computer field for decades.

And I’m having fun.

I couldn’t find the music I wanted.  I knew that I had tons of albums ripped, and I wanted to play them on my nifty RasPi music player.  That’s good.

I couldn’t find them.  My music?  Nada.  I didn’t panic.  I didn’t think about it, intentionally.  I remembered that I had cleared up some space recently.  I have three disks in my PC, from various iterations of go-faster, and I don’t need three copies of Windows (do you know how many files are in your C:/Windows directory?  twenty-one thousand on mine.  Yikes!).  So I deleted some, recently.  And now I can’t find my music.  That would qualify as bad.

So tonight I used the Everything tool which showed me that I have around eleven thousand MP3s stashed under F:/Users/saubrey/Linux external/music.  Good.

But on the root of F: I have a file named “This is steel and rust.txt”  (vs. “This is silicon.txt” on other drives).  Not so good.  Thinking I’ll copy some files tonight.  That’s good.

We did attend the Mercy Me concert a few weeks ago, and yes, we did dance to Happy Dance.

And I’m happy dancing again – the Raspberry Pi music dealie is working. Digital sound out to the sound bar

Running Volumio, since Rune wouldn’t boot.

And my first song? What else?

My latest goofy thing is a music player connected to our TV’s sound bar, powered by a Raspberry Pi.

Tonight was assembly night.

Boxed:

The Hifiberry is a sound card that puts out digital audio. I’ll be using the RCA connector to the sound bar. Two different SD cards for different OS attempts.

Unboxed:

Assembled:

No power supply yet – that’s being delivered Wednesday. No operating system – leaning toward Rune. No content – I have a lot of ripped CDs, and a lot more to rip, and all to be copied to the 256gb external hard drive.

Hour and a half for assembly. Figure another hour for OS install and adding some tunes. Half hour for connecting and sound bar setup.

Then cranking the music.

The “don’t do this” side…

This was in my spam folder today.

The mix of “mean” and “dear” struck me funny.

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