Podcast Season 1 Episode 16


Title: The Shrieking Sister

In this episode: Nokia announces a new Linux handset, Sony drops Linux support from its new Playstation 3 console and Google creates a 64-bit version of its Chrome browser. Listen to the results of our two weeks with text-mode challenge and we ask whether we should be more zealous when promoting Linux and open source.

What's in the show

  • News: Nokia has announced the N900, a Linux-based handset built on its Maemo platform. Google has released the first 64-bit version of its Chrome browser, and it's for Linux, while Sony drops support for Linux running on the new slimline Playstation 3 consoles.
  • Hot Topic: The results from our text-mode challenge.
  • Discovery of the week:
    • Mike: It's Slackware 13!
    • Paul: No longer the OpenFontLibrary, and nor is it a man page on the command-line
    • Graham: Creating nested directories with 'mkdir -p jackson/best_of/earth_song'
    • Andrew: "If you can get your head through a gap then you can climb your whole body through it."
  • Open Ballot: Should we be more zealous when promoting Linux and open source?
  • Special offer: subscribe to Linux Format magazine and save up to to 55% - that's just $7.62 an issue!

Presenters: Andrew Gregory, Paul Hudson, Graham Morrison and Mike Saunders

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Your comments

Music on Console!

Music on Console is an excellent command-line music player. Although the documentation doesn't bother to tell you that you launch it by typing 'mocp' in a console.

I completely agree with regard to man pages. It seems they're written by programmers for programmers. I gave up reading them ages ago.

Oh, and instead of French, which at least one of you appears to know, I demand you speak in Welsh for two weeks. :)

man pages

I thought man pages were mostly outdated and info was the way to go . . .

Re: Podcast Season 1 Episode 16

And I thought I was the only person on the planet to notice Slack 13! Hats off to Ubuntu and openSUSE and studio but Slackware has been around since time began. I dare anyone out there to challenge their "mission statement"......

The simplest, the strongest, the easiest ....... and the most efficient. Simply put; Slack was made to do only what YOU want it to do. ANYWHERE.


If you're looking for a good command-line based music player setting up Music Player Daemon (MPD) and MPC as a client. It's as simple as "mpc add <artist name>" and then "mpc play" to play music :)

OGG Files with Tags Please

If you want to encourage people to use free codecs like OGG, please tag the files the same as you do for the MP3s otherwise they show up as unknown in the PMP!

Thanks for the great podcast.


Glad to hear I'm not the only one who cringes at some of the Zealot's actions. Don't get me wrong I admire people like RMS for his conviction to the cause but sometimes I just think that he undoes a lot of the good done by others.

Great show again guys, keep them coming please :)

good episode, a new challenge for you guys

Enjoyed this episode a lot. I got a new Challenge for you guys, how about using a lightweight desktop environment for a week either LXDE or Xfce (your choice). Thanks guys, and I will be looking forward to Episode #17.

Red Hat Codenames

The only codenames anyone remembers are Valhalla and Shrike. My family thought I was more than a little strange shouting "Valhalla" repeatedly at my speakers.
This has has nothing to do with anything but that podcast just reminded me of the double CD and floppy disk of Red Hat 6.1 I pickup up in a charity shop for £0.75 whilst on holiday. Here's a challenge, why not use Red Hat 6.1 (or some other earlier version of Linux) for a fortnight?


What's all this nonsense? Xfce? Red Hat 6.1? I say they should use Plan 9 for two weeks!

Re: Xfce

Just for the record: Mike is a full-time Xfce user :-)

@Huw - Wimps

This Wimps nonsense is Windows Icons Menus and Pointing (Device)
Love, Light and Peace, Crispibits


How about using something like awesome or dwm for two weeks, then?

Keep up the good work.

Cracking podcast guys - hugely entertaining and, of course, informative. I especially like the new theme of increasingly ridiculous challenges each fortnight. Now the open ballot is no longer 'open', how about letting us listeners vote on the next challenge?

You know, I kind of agree on

You know, I kind of agree on trying out LXDE for a while. It will make you able to point out any important lack of features or any obvious bugs.

If instead, Xfce gets more lightweight somehow, that'll be fine too to me. :P

some requests

id like for you to try out fluxbox for a few weeks and also an issue on intel vs amd cpus for linux and ati vs nvidia

i want to upgrade in near future , i know ati have some driver issues so i want to know how they rate now, also wich amd or intel cpu are better performance in linux

Linux on PS3 and phone keyboard

Hey, fantastic podcast, been listening for a few weeks now, and its great. Just a few things.

Does anyone ACTUALLY use Linux on their PS3? Yeah, most geeks have installed it, but do they use it? I know it is a geeky thing to see if you can get it done, but its too easy to do it now anyway. It is a pointless thing, IMO, as you don't even get the full potential of the PS3. You only get virtual hardware. So, IMO, Sony aren't a big bad company who are getting rid of Linux to spite you. Maybe they are, but, tbh, I don't really care.

As for phone keyboards, I really do miss having a phone keyboard. I have a nokia 5800, and I wish I did have a keyboard, because it works so much better than a software keyboard. I think for my next phone, I will definately get a phone that has a keyboard. Maybe one with maemo :P

cli music player?

Hi, I know I'm a bit behind (was on holiday last week), but I just finished listening to the podcast and couldn't find this amazing cli music player you mentioned when reviewing your challenge. I think you called it herry, and you definitely mentioned it being in a recent hotpicks, but I couldn't find any cli music player in any recent hotpics. So I'd just like to know how I can get this player that satisfied your needs, I've tried the ones mentioned above (moc, mpd ...), but they don't quite fulfill my needs, nor does my recent re-discovery of mplayer's cli (but it's pretty damn close). The only feature I miss from mplayer is inserting into/rearranging the playlist.

p.s. I'd like to refute Andrew's DotW, there are many holes I can get my head into, but not many I can get my chest through. Take for example a picture frame which is only just larger than your head, and try to fit your chest into it (without breaking any ribs). On the other hand, I believe that you can climb through any gap you can get your chest through.

Nokia N900

As far as I know the Nokia N900 is NOT QT based but GTK+.

Promoting Linux

If the FSF invested their energy into pushing for a standardized software deployment protocol for Linux they might, no no no they WOULD win more converts! This is the single biggest problem for Linux acceptance. Forget anything else... Windows7 , Vista, MacOS, it is all irrelevant. Organise a standard then geeks and all will benefit.

Start the campaign Mr Stallman


I took a period without X a while ago, where I used Links2, Pine/Alpine, Calcurse, Mp3blaster and Mplayer using frame buffer. I never got text processing down, but I have since then become aware of fbgs, which makes it possible to check LaTeX-generated PDF files using the frame buffer, so now it should be possible to work with...

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