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Alachua County Friends of the Library Book Sale rocks!

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  • Saturday, October 31 2009 @ 01:29 AM UTC
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Reading and Writing

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I am lucky to work a few blocks away from the Main Branch of the Florida Alachua County Library here in Gainesville. I am perhaps even more lucky to work right down the street from the Friends of the Library Book Sale.   The book sale is held twice a year and the fall sale just finished.  I managed to limit myself to buying only 10 books during the 3 days that I walked up the street to the sale from my office... and spent under $10 total.  The sale runs from Saturday - Wednesday and the weekdays are not nearly as crowded.

I am quite happy with my finds at the sale:

Reading Binge

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  • Monday, October 26 2009 @ 02:07 AM UTC
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Reading and Writing

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I've been on a bit of a reading binge this year.  I will talk about that more in a future post.

Below is a list of the fiction I have read during 2009 up thru today (70 books!).  I read mostly Speculative / Science Fiction.  In the future I hope to publish my reading list with sortable columns by title, author, rating, or whatever information might be useful.  

In the meantime, here is the plain old list of books (sorted by author):

Ubuntu 9.04 on Acer Aspire One AO751h

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  • Monday, October 19 2009 @ 02:25 PM UTC
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Linux, Open Source, and Tech Stuff

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A few weeks ago I bought my first netbook, an Acer Aspire One AO751h.  Today these are selling at NewEgg and elsewhere for under $300, but if you intend to run Linux today you should try a different model.

** Update June 2011:  The AO751h really sucks at running Linux.  I continued having the issue where it would not resume from suspend every time, sometimes wireless would not re-activate, etc.  Eventually I put Windows back on it and gave it to my brother. **

I wanted a netbook because it would be light enough to take "everywhere" and due to cost. Ultra-light notebook computers are still over $1000 which is more than I wanted to spend.  I chose the AO751h because the case comes in various non-generic colors (I chose blue), it has a nice big keyboard, long battery life, and the screen is 11.6 inches with a resolution of 1366x768.  The large hard drive (250 GB) allowed me to double- and triple-boot while I tested various Linux distributions.  This netbook is great for web browsing, running vim/emacs, SSH, git, and Remote Desktop. I bought the Windows Vista version of this netbook in order to get the included 2 GB of RAM.  The AO751h includes a 6-cell battery and lies flat on the table, unlike some of the netbooks that have an ugly battery sticking out the bottom that raises the back of the netbook up.  I need proper ergonomic keyboard angle to help avoid wrist problems.  I plan to do a lot of typing on this computer.

Sadly, the AO751h and Ubuntu are not yet a match made in heaven.  After some struggle, I did manage to get a usable Ubuntu 9.04 system,  Enough quirks remain that I continue to dual-boot with Windows.  Windows Vista was very slow on this hardware, so I replaced Vista with Windows XP which runs very well.

Here is the Ubuntu wiki page for this system:

https://help.ubuntu.com/community/AspireOne/AO751h

There are two major Ubuntu compatibility issues with this hardware that require tweaking... the video resolution and Suspend/Resume.  Wireless works out of the box although sometimes the device takes over 15 seconds to re-activate after Resume (and occasionaly wireless never comes back and I have to reboot).  The function keys for brightness do not work in a fresh install but seem to work ok after installing the psb-kernel-source package for the Intel Poulsbo (GMA 500) graphics.

Detailed hardware info (including lspci output) is at the bottom of this post.

Gator chomping fish

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  • Sunday, October 18 2009 @ 11:39 PM UTC
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Silly or Interesting

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Pictures taken at Alachua Sink / La Chua Trail in 2007. This was by far the most wild gator activity we have ever seen. The alligators were actively catching and eating fish and causing quite a stir. We could hear growling as well as the crunching of fish bones.





Naked Mole Rat

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  • Sunday, October 18 2009 @ 11:35 PM UTC
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Picture take at the Jacksonville Zoo in 2006.

You May Press the Coconuts

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  • Sunday, October 18 2009 @ 11:14 PM UTC
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I took this picture in Hawaii a few years ago.


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thatlinuxbox.com is the home of Dan Stoner's Personal Blog, Photos, and More (opinions, rants, techno-babble, and possibly a few useful tidbits of knowledge).

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