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Good Bye Akademy August 31, 2014

Posted by tumaix in planetkde-tomazcanabrava.
7 comments

I’m leaving you today,

Good bye, Good bye, good bye.

Good bye all of you people,

There’s nothing you can say

To make me change my mind,

Because I broke a leg and I’m going to surgery o tuesday.

ūüė¶

tomaz-cadeira

at least i was sexy in the picture.

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On normal people using Linux, part 2 August 25, 2014

Posted by tumaix in planetkde-tomazcanabrava.
16 comments

This is the story of a girl named Elisa, and Elisa liked to do girlish things like hang out with her friends, sunbath at the beach, go to riots and protests against the world cup, support the feminism movement and study. Regarding study, she does Psicology class in the Fluminense Federal University ( UFF ) in Niter√≥i, Rio de Janeiro. I’v met Elisa by a friend of a friend that wanted to introduce us beause of our common ideals:
protestagainst
One day she was laying around, half on the couch, half on the coffe table, half on the floor – just like a cat, while we were talking about Musicals and this history went as such:

“So, you understand a bit about computers, right?”
“hm….”
“My computer is so, so slow. Do you know what it can be?”
“hm…?”
“Well, Windows. but it’s the new one, Windows 7”
“hm.”
“No, tomaz, I’ll not put linux, I’m not a programmer.”
“hm hm…”
“No, and don’t insist.”
“hm.”

A week later she was crying in despair and asked my help to dual-boot her windows installation with a linux of my choice, for her windows install was taking more than 5 minutes to be usable, and each program . I’v started talking about her about how many linuxes there are, her eyes were like ._. ,Then I started talking about what are desktop managers and related programs, and her eyes were like ._o, then I started talking about her about some assumptions that she needed to make before installing ( primary system? use cases? games? ) and her eyes were like o_o, finally I settled down for OpenSUSE because she liked the gecko. I’v installed and helped her thru the configuration, things were faster than windows and she was happy, but not as much – Netflix didn’t really worked out of the box and some black magic should be done for it, and also evernote didn’t had an official linux client and the one that existed was a java based application ( seriously guys, java’s bad for the health. )
elisa
One day she calls me

“Linux doesn’t boot”
“what?”
“my Linux is broken”
“what?”
“I didn’t do anything, it now freezes at the gray screen with the clock”
– I had no idea what was the gray screen with the clock
“What clock? Gray? Gray clock? Grayjoy ironborn?”

With a bit of explanation I understood: KDM was not being shown, a bare X window with the clock-shaped mouse pointer was all that she got. What could be the issue? I’v searched, checked, searched, nothing that I could came up with. I removed her SUSE ( because this was not the first problem that occoured with her, and since I don’t use suse myself I had to study every time she had questions ) and changed to my distribution, the one that takes almost a day to install – “Here, take this, it’s pretty, it’s faster than suse, and if anything happens I most probably already have dealed with that so it will be easier to fix your issue”, she was afraid at first because on arch linux you must go to the terminal from now and then, but overall, happy.

“Your linux is slow as hell.”
“hm?”
“Seriously, why did you removed suse?”
“hm…?”
“it takes ages to open a tab on firefox”
“…”
“something called pipelight is eating all my cpu”
“er… Dear, did you try to install something to watch netflix?”
“Yes. I’v followed up Arch’s Wiki”
“Well, it seems that it’s that that’s letting your computer slow, please remove that, will ya?”
“No netflix for me then? I hate you.”
“Sorry, but you can try the new version of Chrome, It’s not ‘free software’ in the ‘opensource vision’ but it plays Netflix using the HTML5 stuff, on linux’
“Oh, really?”
“Yes.”
“… worked, things are fast. love you again.”

And I tougth things were going fine, ok and nice, when suddenly:

“Linux doesn’t boot”
“what?”
“my Linux is broken”
“what?”
“I didn’t do anything, it now freezes at the gray screen with the clock”
– I had no idea what was the gray screen with the clock
“What clock? Gray? Gray clock? Grayjoy ironborn?”

What should I do? This was my linux choice, I have never got this problem, she got this problem twice with two different distros. Could be the Stars Alignment? Could it be my breath? Could it be the promess of a brand new day in a clear blue sky? I started to search for answers for the question “What can make KDM halt like that?” And I found out “font-cache can be an issue”

“Dear, can you run on the terminal the command fc-cache?”
“What’s a terminal?”
” the ‘DOS’, just hit Ctrl + Alt + F1″ ( now, I *know* that’s not a dos, but normal people don’t care about the differences about dos, bash, command.com or anything like that – enter code on a black screen in the mind of a windows user for his whole life? DOS. )
“ok, I’m here”
“write fc-cache -fv”



“How long this should take?”
“not much, why?”
“It’s running for about 20 minutes.”

Something was deep wrong with the font-cache. what could be the issue?

“Dear, what did you tried to do with in regard about fonts? did you installed anything?”
“Well, I’v tried to use the windows fonts because they are prettier.”
“why would you do that?”
“Because they are prettier. And because my university asks the ‘Times New Roman’ font on the texts”
“Can you remove the windows fonts from the system? if you followed Arch Linux wiki, should be something similar to unlink /directory/where/fonts/are/windows_fonts”
“done.”
“can you run the fc-cache again?”
“done.”
“reboot” ( I could have told her to use systemctl to try to reestart KDM, but then I’d need to explain what was systemctl and a restart was faster. )
“worked. yey!”
“I assume that you did an windows update, right?”
“Yes, I didn’t know it was going to kill my linux”
“Me neither, I need two aspirins, it’s too much for me today. windows fonts on a windows install breaking linux… AAAAHHHHHHH”

Now, This was most likely the *same* problem that she had with her OpenSuse, and again if she didn’t had a tech friend this would be a *real* pain to fix.

About the use of linux for normal people August 19, 2014

Posted by tumaix in planetkde-tomazcanabrava.
10 comments

I was trying to write this blog post for quite a long time, and it become so, so big that I’ll have to split it in three posts, It is like a ‘people of kde’ but different, the focus is not to show someone that works for KDE, but someone that tried to use KDE to work – being it a non-tech person. Since I spend most of my days helping people that is struggling with Free Software to pass the hate feeling, I feel that I have lots of things to say being that I’m activelly maintaining over 5 laptops from different friends that lives on different states.

I also like to study humans, this very strange animal that has so many different ways of expressing himself that it’s so, so hard to get it right.

First case of study:

Cl√©o Martins, Professional Chef, Vegan and “Wanted to try linux because she liked the concept”, That’s a bold move.
cleo
Cl√©o is a Chef, and as such she knows how to cook and it’s not a technological person at all. She prefer being in the wild and plant her own organic food, cook, taste and be awesome. She’s also presenting a online course on vegan food. All of a sudden she removed windows from all computers from her school and switched to Ubuntu because someone over the internet told her that it was the best linux that there where and it will ever be, than this person vanished – A lovely thing to do if you need somebody to hold hands for a bit while you understand the system that you are using.

Cl√©o had a *huge* amount of problems on her linux install, tried a few people over the internet, some came to help, some send her a few snippets of code to paste on the terminal and that was making her insanely crazy. “Everyone tells me to do something differently” she cried.

The problems on her computers, and the fix:

  1. Bad Translations on LibreOffice
    • The correct locale was not being set on the system /etc/locale , but it was being set on gnome-settings.
  2. Printer was printing black and white when she wanted colored output.
    • Buggy drivers from HPLIP, if I converted her files to PDF and printed, things worked, but not from LibreOffice
  3. Strange Warnings regarding memory on the disk
    • The dude that installed Ubuntu for her used a 6gbs partition for root and it was full, impossible to update without learning about the unix file systems and creating a link in /var/cache/apt to the other, big partition.
  4. Laptop seems to “die” after a few minutes of idle
    • laptop was on, brigthness was set to minimum, and even if you moved the mouse it wouldn’t get brigther, you needed to unlock the screen and *then* move the mouse, but remember that the screen was pitch black
  5. Email on Thunderbird was *much* more slow than on windows
    • Her account was configured only for online mode

So finally she reached me, I’v went to her house and tried to fix all problems that I could, some I couldn’t because of lack of knowledge on Unity / Ubuntu, I’v asked her if she was willing to try another thing, installed and configured KDE correctly, removed the Unity and Gnome stuff that was there and she was much happier, but still hating Linux – “It seems to me that all of those linux guys are just kids playing with computers, those things should work and they don’t and when they do it’s because you spend a lot of time configuring stuff on my computer to make they work”, I couldn’t disagree. It’s sad, It’s the truth: We like to configure our linux boxes but the overall user wants just to use computers and it should work reliably.

Today Cl√©o changed her distribution be cause all of the help that she could got on ubuntu only made her computer worse, and is using the same as I use, for I know that I’ll have the time when she needs to help her – I’v spend almost a day configuring it for her so she wouldn’t need to worry about repositories, packages and whattanot. Gave her a brief introduction on what she could touch that will not break the system and what she couldn’t, and she’s now a Linux user, not happy one yet because the HPLIP is still giving her headaches. Overall, not a very good experience on her, but we can do so much better in the future.

laKademy Allons-y! August 4, 2014

Posted by tumaix in planetkde-tomazcanabrava.
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( Soft steps like if you are dancing jazz )

Alice's_Restaurant 

Here we again my friends, for the next Latinoamerican KDE convention, this time we are flyign with tears in our eyes into the sunset ( but we will be back soon, so don’t you cry ) from the beautifull city of Porto Alegre where we had the first ( and very successfull laKademy ) to the garoa land, S√£o Paulo – the brazilian “Big Apple”, the latinoamerican “City of Light”, The Brazilian capital of hipster clothing, The Taste and gourmet heaven for good coffe ( that’s like, regular coffe just overpriced ), with the population of more than 12 million brazilians that just wanna have fun.
usp1
And why the hell we will make a Convention in a place where everybody just wanna have fun? Well. Where’s the fun on *not* doin’g that? hack is fun, teaching is fun, having strong arguments conversation with three or four persons using only your capoeira pants and awesome fighting skills to discover the bug in an application is fun \o/, but having a nice¬† stadium for that is even bether so the USP – University of S√£o Paulo generously gave us Rooms computers and students to be our little interns for three days, learning the beauty, the awesomeness, the fan – wait, wait for it – tastic world of Free Software using the best, most used, fully customizable, pretty, cool and fluffy desktop enviroment and applications that are and ever will be.
choro-e-livre
We will have Talks ( check ), we will have hacking sessions ( check ), we will have poetry readings ( check ), we will have artists doing awesome on krita ( check ) and we will have pole dance ( check ) to make this the best convention in the whole time and space.
giphy
Ahh… I love humans. Always seeing patterns in things that aren‚Äôt there.