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Month: May, 2012

Unit 3 – It Works!

Before running away to Library School this winter I spent most of my professional career as an editor. Playing around with the text editors this week resulted in some wonderful memories and some horrible flashbacks. I’ll begin at the beginning…

I was unable to ping Wikipedia despite a stellar internet connect. Update: You know how sometimes you just have to complain about something to make it step up and take responsibility for itself. Well, after posting on this blog, so publicly and for all the world to see, that I was unable to ping I gave it another go, and it worked, of course.

But ifconf worked and this comforted my previous failure.

I went on to explore the VIM tutorial. It was awesome to see so many wonderful keyboard shortcuts and I wondered if Microsoft Office had similar commands or just as many that I had never taken the time to investigate. Shortcuts like getting to the end of a line or the last character in the nth word, the put command, and many others would have been super helpful. The tutorial was easy to navigate and pretty straightforward.  I went through it several times and found the commands were becoming more and more second nature. Of course l would be right, how logical, how sensible. Nonetheless, I was beginning to remember or at least my fingers were many of the commands. I did, however, struggle with a few commands. I was unable to master the lesson about using the command line prompt within the tutorial, I could only get the copy and paste features to sort of work. I found it very difficult to find the words through searching. Even though I was able to do this successfully without so much as a blinking curser to show you where the word you were looking for was, I found myself scanning too man words before I finally found the discreet underline at the word I had search for.

I had much less of an emotional or intellectual connection with nano, as I was in and out before I ever realized what was happening. I configured something. If not for the summaries is the assignment section, I would have no clue what happened. I hope this will become clearer in the weeks ahead. I did come closer to understand what bashrc is/means, I think. Like I said, without those summaries I’m afraid I would be completely lost. It’s a strange feeling to be both done with this week’s assignments and lost, but I’m getting used to it.


Unit 2 – Parallel Universes

I have to admit I was a bit reluctant to complete the assignments for this week, considering the amount of activity on the discussion board. I like everything in life to go smoothly, which is why I often live on the brink of hopelessness. But not today! With meticulously attention to the YouTube tutorial and a gentle coaxing of my computer (some might call it prayer), I was able to install the virtual desktop and Ubuntu on my host system and everything seemed to work. No problems. No errors. No tears!

My first thought upon entering Ubuntu was that I had entered some sort of digital parallel universe. It wasn’t a MAC or a PC, but it wasn’t totally foreign either. Is there such as thing as digital déjà vu? I had always envisioned LINUX as some sort of black and white blinking white square character, without graphics or sounds, programs or games (like what you see when you open Terminal. Oh Terminal! So aptly named! Because that’s what I imagine working with you will feel like. (more on that in this week’s discussion post)).

But Ubuntu looks like an old friend after a facelift. A facelift where you can’t necessarily tell, at first, if they look better or worse. It knew it wasn’t a MAC or WINDOWS operating system but it wasn’t that far off. I could navigate it easily.  It didn’t speak another language. A dashboard just like Apple’s dashboard. What! What! The Launcher is just like the Dock. The Ubuntu Software Center looks just like the Apple Store. File folders with names and files and programs that looked just like the ones I look at every day. Which makes me wonder, which came first? Had I been living in the Apple World so long, nobody ever thought to tell me about this parallel universe?

I decided to play around and see if all these buttons were real, to make sure this wasn’t some sort of façade. But, first I am notified that there are 150 updates. I let it update. I changed the wallpaper, several times. I created a few documents. I clicked on File System and it displayed all of the files and more Arthur Griffith talked about in his video tutorials. I didn’t want to screw anything up, so I quickly got out of that folder. I decided to start by downloading something. I went to the Ubuntu Software Center and picked a poker game. It seemed to download, but something wasn’t not right. It had no icon in the Launcher. The game opened and started, but I couldn’t see my cards. I’m not the world’s greatest poker player to begin with, but bidding blind made for some really bad moneymaking decisions on my part.

I decided to restart my computer to see if that would fix the problem. Upon restarting, clicking on the lack of poker icon in the Launcher accomplished nothing. I looked at History and it shows that Poker was removed. I’m not sure why or how or by whom. I decided to try again. This time, there’s a little green check next to the Poker icon at the Ubuntu Software Center. The icon comes up in the Launcher now too. I can start a game. I can even see my cards, the flop, the turn. And this time, I know, before it’s too late, that it’s time to fold.

Unit 1 – Bat Signals

As a complete novice to Ubuntu, Linux, and just about every other word we’ve read this week, I was particularly interested in the type of help users get when they post in Ubuntu’s Absolute Beginner Talk Forum. An hour ago, someone posted New to Ubuntu and described their problem. There are already three responses, including a suggestion to remedy the original poster’s problem. Another user suggests a more detailed explanation of how to implement the proposed remedy. Here’s another example. A user titled their post ‘A Silly Question,’ but this did not stop four others from responding within minutes, taking into account details the original poster did not even include. This really impresses me. A few weeks ago, I placed a call for help on a Google Voice forum and have still yet to see a single response from anyone. I’m happy to see that Ubuntu users respond to all requests and some even take into account the skill level of the poster by providing more step-by-step instructions. Maybe if I had posted my Google Voice question here, I would have had a solution by now.

Is this thing on?

This is my blog for IRLS672. My opening post for IRLS672.
This is the music that you hear as you watch the credits.
We’re almost to the part of where I start to whistle.
Then we’ll read my blog for IRLS672.