My Musings

Unified Command Line in Windows

Some working notes on getting a unified terminal experience on Windows. The ultimate problem is every tool set for Windows wants to install a complete GNU environment and doesn’t bother checking if you already have one installed. The ultimate kicker is: you basically can’t do it.

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Starting X Under Cygwin

This is just a quick note to myself so I can delete it from my desktop. After installing the X server from Cygwin, the server can be launched using

$ XWin -multiwindow -clipboard -silent-dup-err

to let Windows handle the windowing. To launch X at log in, use /bin/run. This boils down to creating a shortcut and setting the target to

C:\Programs\CygWin\bin\run.exe XWin -multiwindow -clipboard -silent-dup-error

Then, place the short cut in the start up directory.

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Playing with Computational Physics

At some point during the process of working through my dissertation, I got so bogged down in the process of doing the work, I forgot a bit why I was so intrigued when I started. I was going through the motions, but not really finding the fun of physics. Sure, programming is fun in and of itself, but I was missing the physics. So, now that I have free time to pursue a hobby, I want to go back and remind myself why I started down this path.

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Setting a Break Point Under PyQt

This is simply a note to myself so I can quit googling how to do this. From this answer on Stack Overflow, to set a break point in a PyQt4 application insert

import pdb, PyQt4

Getting PyTables to Play Nice with Windows

I originally started this as a wiki page on my fork of ViTables. After trying to understand why ViTables would crash on some Windows boxes but not others, I found out that it had nothing to do with ViTables. So, I’ll just put it here. These are primarily the notes I wrote while digging into the problem.

tl;dr: Your Python installation on Windows is stupid and needs to be reinstalled.

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Dumping a Subversion Repository

After finishing my thesis work, I wanted to grab the revision history for both the software I developed and the writing of my dissertation. It was (is?) stored in a subversion server owned by the lab; however, I want all of that for my own purposes.

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A Quick Note on Installing Old Ports

So, I recently discovered that something is wrong with Inkscape 0.91 available from MacPorts. When I attempt to convert a SVG to PDF+LaTeX, it doesn’t work. At first blush, it appears like a macro is not properly closed with a } character; however, I have not had a chance to create a minimum working example to reproduce this behavior. The problem is I need this to work for my dissertation. Trying the development port didn’t help because the lualatex was claiming that a page was missing.

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Salvaging Game Data on Android

A few weeks ago, the wife’s Samsung Galaxy S2 took the final plunge and bit the dust (mostly). It wound up caught in a cycle of powering on and off. Luckily, I was able to fiddle with it enough to grab the highscores.lua and settings.lua files from her Angry Birds games using a little script I wrote some time back.

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Least Squares Fitting

This note is more for myself than for anyone else. I have derived the expression for the least squares fitting so many times it’s not funny. The problem is, once I cobble together the routine to perform the fitting, I completely forget how to do it again. I hope, this will prevent me from having to do it ever again if only because it is on my website.

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Writing in the Terminal

So, I have been writing with plain text files for a while. I’ve plaid around with HTML and LaTeX extensively. Once I discovered the joys of vim, I slowly began to do all of my editing within a terminal emulator. Initially, I worked directly with the before mentioned markup languages. Recently, I learned about pandoc and that let me give up on HTML by using Markdown, but I still wrote my scientific papers directly with LaTeX. Now I think it is time to make the full switch.

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You're up and running!

Hello, World!

This is just a sample test to try to get Jekyll running. It follows Barry Clark’s walk through. A few additional gotchas I came across:

  1. HTML files are passed directly to the server and are not processed. This means that you cannot embed liquid tags in a HTML file that already has the <html> tag.
  2. Don’t forget the permalink tag in the header for top level files. This should have been obvious, but I overlooked it while moving files around.
  3. The title tag is set as an h1 in the output so don’t use another title (# title). It just looks silly.

I’m sure I will come across additional points as I move forward. I’ll probably try to update this post with additional comments in the future. But for now, time to start writing!