It’s cold in here!

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Mountbatten down the hatches – it’s cold in here!

I’ll admit it, the title’s cheesy, but it was necessary.

With temperatures below freezing much of the time, and snow and ice everywhere, it was a miracle that everyone made it to lectures over the past few days – but they did! Glen Eyre Road was more like Glen Eyre Ski Slope, and campus more like Southampton Ice Rink, but I think everyone enjoyed it all the same.

With the turn of the year (and the decade) behind us, it was time to turn to the ever-looming exams. These are the first batch of exams I’m to face at Uni, and frankly I’d better revise for them. I’ll admit that I’ve not done as much revision as I’d like, but I have been working at it, among other things.

Tuesday night saw me working late into the night in the Lab, messing about with my silly program – The Bouncy Dot. The Dot has now been transformed into Tux, the linux penguin, and we can throw it between computers around the lab. It’s great fun, and it’s a paradise for playing around with multicast networking and libSDL (and also wasting a lot of time!).

Wednesday saw a lot of work done on our group presentation on Hackers for INFO1010, which we’re presenting next Friday.

Among all this I was working furiously on stuff for the paintball club, and Student Robotics.

Today, I finally turned my attention to the linux lab machines. They have, since day one, been plagued by irritations such as the environment variable EDITOR not being set, and more irritatingly, most text files opening with xemacs. I personally detest emacs, although it seems to be the default.

For anyone reading this, wondering why on earth stuff is opening in a different program, here’s how to fix it:

1) Create a .desktop file in ~/.local/share/applications that references the relevant application you want to launch. You only need one per application, and remember what you call it.
2) Edit ~/.local/share/applications/mimeinfo.cache and add a line that says something like this: “<mimetype>=<.desktop file name>” You need to replace <mimetype> with the file’s mimetype as detected by gnome. The default mappings are in /usr/share/applications/mimeinfo.cache. Also, replace <.desktop file name> with the file name within ~/.local/share/applications you want it to use.
3) Save the file. Changes are (almost) instant.

That’s it for now.

More in a few weeks.

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