Linux Enthusiasts’ Netcast — Episode 003 (redux)

Here it is, the long-awaited episode 3 of the Linux Enthusiasts’ Netcast!

This episode includes the following products, websites, OSS projects, and organizations:

As usual, I want to hear from you! Send your feedback to:

len@nosbig.net or leave feedback on our voicemail box at (206) 350-8405.

Podcast theme music provided by Mark Blasco, www.podcastthemes.com.

It Takes Diff’rent Strokes

Over the last few weeks, I have been enjoying the insightful, funny, and inspiring moments from the Technology, Entertainment, and Design conference (TED), an exclusive event for just 1,000 people every year. The presenters are given very specific time constraints, something like 18 minutes.

Two of the most enjoyable talks I have seen so far have been from two very different scientists with two very different interests.

Jill Taylor, a neuroanatomist from Boston, talks about what it is like to have a stroke, from personal experience.

Cliff Stoll is most famous for catching some international espionage agents through computer forensics and network security, but he really enjoys physics, astronomy, and education.

Check Out My High Score…

It’s been a while since the event, but I thought I would recommend an event for anyone who enjoys pop culture, classical music, or video games.  Video Games Live came to Columbus back in April.  While I won’t go into a lot of detail about the structure of the show, I will say it was a blast.

For a soundtrack fan like myself, the concert had a great blend of music from the old classics like medleys of the music from the Mario and Zelda series to contemporary classics such as Halo and World of Warcraft.

This show was a bit unique, for me.  First of all, the amazing pianist Martin Leung performed live at the show.  Using the 3-story pipe organ in Mershon Auditorium, he played a suite of music from Castlevania.  For some recorded bits before he began touring with VGL, check out what is available on Google Video.  Notice that he is playing blindfolded to start with.

I would like to go back to the show.  It’s nearest touring to my area is in Fort Wayne in February.

Of course, this isn’t the only concert of its kind.  Other video game concerts have run the world over, but VGL is the biggest domestic concert series.  One of it’s brethren is Distant Worlds: Final Fantasy. While VGL spends time in all sorts of genres of music and games, Distant Worlds is focused specifically on the Final Fantasy series of games. The next concert is in Stockholm Sweden in December.  In the US, the show is coming to Chicago in March.

Both concerts really appeal to me, and I would love to go to both.  We’ll see.  I would need to take a half a day off of work, at least, to get to VGL in Ft. Wayne.  It is on a Friday night, while Distant Worlds is on a Saturday.

What is your favorite soundtrack?  Video game?  Movie?  Would anyone else reading this consider attending a VGL concert?

Starting Another New Job

Well, the absence from this blog has not been without good cause. For the last few months at MCPR, we saw quite a bit interesting happenings, resulting in our being locked out. While this is normally a bad thing, it has been of great benefit to me.

After the closing of MCPR, a group of us entered negotiations with MT Business Technologies, a company whose services are in great demand in the area. After a few short days, we have come to an amicable opportunity. As of today, I have begun working at the company. While I can’t give a lot of detail, for confidentiality reasons, I will say that I am starting by helping the Sales Support staff with their workload, learning to write specifications, scope of work, and other related documents, in MT’s preferred fashion.

I hope to expand into new territories and help the company become even more profitable than it already has become, and I look forward to many years of opportunity to exercise my current and growing skillset.

Starting a Podcast/Netcast

I have been wanting to start a podcast for a very long time, inspired by what Leo Laporte does with TWiT and with what my parents did educating people. So, I spent some time thinking about a focus for the show and decided to start a podcast for people who are wishing to learn more about Linux. The Linux Enthusiasts’ Podcast recorded its first rehearsal podcast today (yes, on April Fool’s Day) to get a feel for the amount of material to need to fill 30-60 minutes.

For the most part, I would like to spend the time answering anyone’s Linux questions. But I thought I would include some weekly news, and I want to include two applications per week, one graphical and one text-based.

To get help with any conundrums, email len@nosbig.net. I want to hear from people before and during the podcast. I will probably post the rehearsal after I edit it down a little. There were a few spots where my ADD got the best of me and I repeated myself or I had to pause a moment to collect my thoughts. I thought I had prepared sufficiently for this episode, but clearly not.

Lingering Projects

Over the course of the last few months, I have come across a few projects that I have not taken the opportunity to work on, and I really should. The following projects are on my short list of things to do:

  • Obtaining and reflashing a Linksys WRT54G router, either the GL or GS.
  • Playing with and/or hacking a LaFonera wireless access point
  • Building my power lockout device for my ham radio
  • Building a PC for my car with wireless capability for a media center
  • Building a decent amateur radio station, including packet station
  • Building a podcast station
  • Upgrade my radio license to General Class

At some point in the future, I want to do some kind of podcast. But before I would commit to that, I need to find a topic that I can regularly update and contribute. Part of the issue of the lack of updates is the company for which I work. MCPR has me doing some very interesting things, but they are marketable ideas that I have to keep quiet. The only project that I can talk about is our Asterisk dabblings. We are offering the ability to connect analog or IP phones to the system and connect to about any outbound media out there, including SIP trunks.

But much beyond that, I don’t have the ability to talk about the details of what I do at work with the world at large, between protecting our clients’ privacy and not wanting to give any competitors any ideas about our strategy.