Updates from December, 2015 Toggle Comment Threads | Keyboard Shortcuts

  • Doug Belshaw 7:27 pm on December 29, 2015 Permalink | Reply  

    My new dual-screen Linux setup 

    Just before Christmas I gave my wife my MacBook Pro; we’re going to sell her MacBook Air this week. I’ve migrated to a Lenovo Thinkpad X220 which I’m using at home with a wireless keyboard and mouse, as well as a Dell 24″ monitor. You can see the X220’s built-in screen on the left of the screenshot above, and the external monitor on the right.

    What I like abut this setup is that the X220 has a docking station that I picked up cheaply via eBay. That means that when I come into my home office, all I have to do is drop the laptop into the docking station, and I’m straight to work on the equivalent of a dual-screen desktop setup.

    For those interested, I’m running ElementaryOS. The screen on the left shows Firefox with a number of extensions installed (including Tree Style Tab). On the right I’ve got Thunderbird with the Lightning calendar extension.

    What probably doesn’t show up in the screenshot is that I’m running Redshift. This alters the screen temperature over the course of the day in an even better way than f.lux did on my Mac. Along with the black themes for Firefox and Thunderbird, this helps alleviate my photophobia.

    Oh, and the book in the Firefox window is The Pirate Book, which I’ve just found via Hacker News and sent to my Kindle to read.

  • Doug Belshaw 7:29 pm on December 22, 2015 Permalink | Reply  

    Thirty Five 

    Just putting my head above the parapet to say that today’s my birthday; I’m now 35 years of age.

    In previous years my birthday has caused me some angst but, this year, I feel happy, settled, and fully in control of my life. It’s great. People worry about all sorts of things that aren’t important: even being purposely unaware of what’s happening in the daily news cycle I’ve found liberating.

    Over the last few weeks I’ve been reading a lot of aphorisms. I was already reading Balthasar Gracian’s The Pocket Oracle and Art of Prudence on repeat, but I’ve added to it The Oxford Book of Aphorisms and some thoughts and aphorisms by Goethe that I picked up at a second-hand bookshop today. I’m also planning to re-read Nassim Nicholas Taleb’s The Bed of Procrustes: Philosophical and Practical Aphorisms.

    My parents have just been round for the customary gift-giving and slice of cake. Since they asked, I showed them the presentation I gave a few weeks ago on types of ambiguity. My mother commented that most things I do have their roots in philosophy. That had me nodding in agreement, but then she said something in passing that I found very interesting – that I “started out in education”. Given that I still consider myself an ‘educator’ this gave me pause for thought. It’s made me realise that, in some people’s eyes at least, I’ve moved on.

    I’ll finish off this missive by remarking that I’m typing this on my Lenovo Thinkpad X220 running ElementaryOS. I bought it on a whim in January this year as my ‘consultancy’ laptop. I still have my MacBook Pro, so hadn’t really used it much up until now. However, some reflections during this year’s ‘Black Ops’ period made me realise that I need enough, not necessarily always the latest and greatest. I’m also keen to use Linux. So, this week I’m upgrading the RAM and hard disk in the Thinkpad and will be using that as my primary machine going into 2016. My wife’s inheriting my MacBook Pro, and we’re selling her MacBook Air.

    I’m back on 1st January 2016. It might take me a few days to ger back into my groove. Between then and now I’ll be thinking about identity, making a /now page, and hopefully making time to add some of my favourite aphorisms to my wiki.

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