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Music, new and old #music

๐Ÿ•š๏ธŽ - 2020-11-14

I haven't really been listening to music lately; the last couple of years.

I'm not sure why. I stopped listening to radio, and I don't follow any media where new music is mentioned much. I guess podcasts took over.

I did however "discover" Mazzy Star earlier this year, because I heard their hit "Fade Into You" mentioned, when David Roback died. I looked up the song on Youtube and liked it, so I bought all the Mazzy Star cd's I could find.

Yes, cd's - I like not needing a network connection to be able to listen to music, and I like having a physical cover/booklet. Even if I rarely take the cd off the shelf and look at it, just letting the jukebox play instead. Maybe I kid myself when I imagine that the musicians get a little more out of such a sale than a stream click?

And I like Mazzy Star. As I should, as with most music I like it's mostly from the 1990's, when I was in my late teens/twenties. I like the mellow laid back sound and the - I guess? - incomprehensible lyrics.

Yesterday I was lucky enough to be gifted the lp "Punisher" by Phoebe Bridgers, which I have just put on the record player. That's what I planned to write about.

I've only heard the first couple of songs so far, but it is - as it was described to me - very sad. I like it.

Time to get up and turn the record over. Recommended.

Friday Evening

๐Ÿ•ก๏ธŽ - 2020-10-30

I have started the Friday backup, I'm sitting with my old Gnus mug - "In a cloud bones of steel" - steaming with hot chocolate, and Bob Dylan is rehearsing for his Rolling Thunder Revue tour on the stereo.

An evening to sit and reminisce.

Tweaking get news in Gnus #gnus

๐Ÿ•˜๏ธŽ - 2020-10-04

It is nice to be able to easily change the details of how things work when they are just a little off kilter for your preferences.

When I ask my email program/newsreader Gnus to look for new email/news by pressing g in the *Group* buffer, the count of unread messages is updated - and the way I have ordered my groups, I usually want to start reading from the top. However, by default, Gnus doesn't move the cursor after updating the list.

Let's fix that.

What to do? Well, C-h k g tells me that g bound to a function called gnus-group-get-new-news, so maybe I'll write a function to be called when g is pressed, that calls gnus-group-get-new-news and does some more.

What I want to happen is that after new email/news is fetched, is that the cursor is put at the first group with unread messages, for me to start reading.

So I wrote this:

(defun asjo-group-get-new-news ()
  "Do the equivalent of g M-< n :*)"
  (interactive)
  (gnus-group-get-new-news)
  (gnus-group-next-unread-group 1))

(define-key gnus-group-mode-map [(g)] 'asjo-group-get-new-news)

and put it in my ~/.gnus.

I've been using that for years. Sometimes it's a little annoying, because the first groups I have are the drafts and delayed groups, and I don't want to read those over and over - they are drafts and delayed for a reason. So I want to skip past them. Luckily I have a topic called "email" I can skip to, so:

(defun asjo-group-get-new-news ()
  "Do the equivalent of g M-< n :*)"
  (interactive)
  (gnus-group-get-new-news)
  (goto-char (point-min))
  (search-forward "email")
  (gnus-group-next-unread-group 1))

So that's nice, when there is new stuff to read, the cursor is put on the first group after the draft/delayed groups.

But what happens when there is no new news? Then the cursor ends up on the email-topic. Hm. I don't like that. So I changed the function to this:

(defun asjo-group-get-new-news ()
  "Do the equivalent of g M-< n :*)"
  (interactive)
  (gnus-group-get-new-news)
  (goto-char (point-min))
  (search-forward "email")
  (let ((current-place (point)))
    (gnus-group-next-unread-group 1)
    (when (= current-place (point))
      (goto-char (point-min)))))

So if gnus-group-next-unread-group doesn't move the cursor, the cursor is returned to the top of the *Group* list.

Being able to make little tweaks like this is one of the things that makes Emacs in general and Gnus is particular so nice to use.

Marketing opportunities #feedbase

๐Ÿ•ž๏ธŽ - 2020-10-03

I recently read that China banned RSS in 2007, and continues by banning phone apps that access RSS.

I'm not sure I get the rationale, but this sounds like a great marketing opportunity for NNTP and Feedbase, doesn't it?

Sheryl Crow band 2020 #music

๐Ÿ•—๏ธŽ - 2020-09-13

Looks like Sheryl Crow has quite the eclectic band - Ted Kaczynski on guitar and a backup singer with an XKCD "Science, it works bitches" shirt. Impressive!

Plain-text email a barrier to kernel development participation? #email

๐Ÿ•ก๏ธŽ - 2020-09-12

The Register reports, in Relying on plain-text email is a 'barrier to entry' for kernel development, says Linux Foundation board member:

Linux kernel development โ€“ which is driven by plain-text email discussion โ€“ needs better or alternative collaborative tooling "to bring in new contributors and maintain and sustain Linux in the future," says Sarah Novotny, Microsoft's representative on the Linux Foundation board.

Wauw, such a thinly veiled attempt at getting the the Linux developers to lock themselves into Microsoft GitHubยน.

You can take your sickening embrace attempt and stick it up where the sun don't shine, Microsoft.

"Linux is a cancer" - it might be convenient for you if everybody forgets the past and just jumps on the latest Microsoft-acquired bandwagon, but words and actions have meaning. Sorry.

Or maybe it would be a good thing, like when the whole [BitKeeper debacle] begat git.

Said tooling could be "a text-based, email-based patch system that can then also be represented in a way that developers who have grown up in the last five or ten years are more familiar with," she added.

Techsplaining to the oldies that the youth can't be bothered to figure out sending plain-text email much?

Novotny has been at Microsoft for just over a year, working in Azure's Office of the CTO where she describes herself as an โ€œopen source wonk.โ€

Rah-rah.

โ€œWe have more than half of the Azure cores now are running Linux in some flavor.

Good, more evidence, along with WSL, that Microsoft is losing, and going for the usual bag of tricks.

See also: "Bill Gates made his fortune through sheer robber-baronry, presiding over a vicious monopolist that shattered the law in its greedy quest for billions and permanent, global dominance.", Cory Doctorow.

ยน Yes, I'm calling it "Microsoft GitHub", and so should you.

A Mind at Play #books

๐Ÿ•ž๏ธŽ - 2020-08-30

I just finished reading the biography of Claude Shannon "A Mind at Play" subtitled "How Claude Shannon invented the information age" by Jimmy Soni and Rob Goodman.

I knew of Shannon before I read the book, and it was an interesting glimpse into the life of a genius, who apparently besides being a genius also was modest, humorous, at times lazy, and focused on what ever whim interested him without worrying about how it "looked" - unicycling, juggling, information theory, building machines to solve mazes, etc. etc.

Recommended.

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