Friday, August 05, 2005

1984 - orwell

Big Brother is watching you

I just read the first few pages of Orwell's book 1984 and this is what I think of it so far. The character, Winston, is who I've been introduced to. He's just come home from work and poured himself a glass of "Victory Gin". He's about to smoke a "Victory Cigarrette" and is about to write in an illegal diary. Well, nothing is illegal, as they say, in this society as there are no laws. But possession of such a thing would surely result in his punishment by either death or 25 years hard labour.

His apartment has a single camera mounted in it. The government is watching and listening to him at any given time. The same to all its citizens. Winston is about to write in his journal and is not sure who he's writing to. He writes a date, April 4th 1984, but is not sure if that's the correct year. Nobody knows for sure what the correct date, plus or minus a year, is any more. He decides to write about the movies he watched the night before.

It appears the government entertains its people with movies of war. Winston writes gleefully of witnessing a massacre of refugees; seeing a frightened man, viewed through the gun-barrels of a helicopter, shot full of holes while swimming away from the helicopter. Another of a woman in a boat full of children trying to calm her son, holding her arms around him as if that were enough to protect them from the bullets. And if that weren't enough, the 20 kg bomb dropped onto the boat would do them in. And he recalls a particular shot of a childs arm propelled into the air falling just short of a helicopters rotors.

Some society to live in. And this all within the first few pages of the book. Sounds like a book I should read, maybe not a happy book, but an important one none-the-less.

-When does Emmanuel Goldstein get introduced

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

girlfriends birthday

Happy Birthday!!

I know you wanted one of these:

and we will. We'll get one when we've got the time and space. Happy birthday, sweetheart.

-Lots of love, from your guy.

Monday, August 01, 2005

xmodmap thinger

Buttons with my laptop

I found a nice little config to get the volume control buttons working on my laptop. Note, this config file will probably only work on an HP zv5320, but the way to set up the config to automatically run after every reboot will probably be a help to you. The help came from this page particularly, so thanks a lot to the author.

Create a file called .Xmodmap in your home directory

> sudo emacs /home/user/.Xmodmap

and add these lines

keycode 174 = XF86AudioLowerVolume

keycode 160 = XF86AudioMute

keycode 176 = XF86AudioRaiseVolume

keycode 178 = XF86HomePage

keycode 223 = XF86Standby

keycode 162 = XF86AudioPlay

keycode 164 = XF86AudioStop

keycode 144 = XF86AudioPrev

keycode 153 = XF86AudioNext
Again, it's only going to work for an HP zv5320 laptop.

Problem was, I couldn't get the script to load up every time the computer rebooted. I would have to load the script via

> xmodmap ~/.Xmodmap

in order for the buttons to work again. You can imagine that it would suck to havae to do that every time. I don't know because I have it set to do it automatically. Here's what I did (and no other way worked for me, I tried quite a few). So now is where this works for anybody on any system, at least that's the aim. To run the command xmodmap ~/.Xmodmap at the beginning of every session, instead of manually typing it into a terminal yourself, add the following to the end of your .bash_profile from your home directory

if [ -f ~/.Xmodmap ]; then
xmodmap ~/.Xmodmap

save the .bash_profile and you should be good to go.

-bash_profile is good for everything! (at least lots of things)