Kitematic for Linux

Missing the oh-so-awesome Kitematic on Ubuntu and jealous of your friendly Mac OS X and Windows cousins? It’s a simple webapp available as a docker image.

I only had to forcefully stop the image with a ‘docker stop kitematic’ command, and further re-run with a standard ‘docker start kitematic’ command.

Note this this article describes running kitematic in an isolated network zone named ‘host’ – so no visibility by default to your other running images. Change the –net parameter to fix that.



Mac OS X Mavericks: Finder Slow or Unresponsive? Blame App Nap.

I’m partial when it comes to acknowledging Mac OS X’s quirks (having used Windows for a very long time), but there are things and there are…things.

After OS X Mavericks upgrade, I had two big qualms with Finder:

  • It would go unresponsive for about 10-15 seconds after a wake from suspend. Consistently. Every-single-time.
  • It would blink for about 4-5 seconds before loading any directory. Throughout.

This Apple support thread has a post from rubyreddevon that indicated that AppNap might be the culprit.

Issuing this:

sudo defaults write NSAppSleepDisabled -bool YES

The AppNap integration was disabled, and presto, Finder shines and is zippy again.

Update: This way or the Menu way: Two ways to AppNap integration management for Mac Apps.

Speaking to your iTunes Library

If you’re like me, you want a freakish control of the ID3 tags of your iTunes library. I’ve been long maintaining the basic tags like name-album-artist-genre with draconian order for many years now, but looking at the Music app navigator in iPod, I was thinking for a while to give better order to rest of the tags, especially the composer names.

This might be odd for American users, but the songs in Tamil come 99%  from Tamil movies (not albums with videos), and are kinda ‘owned and identified’ with the composer as the “primary artist”. Not sure if everyone is still accepting this dated mindset, but for example – the magnanimous Ilayaraja‘s songs are simply “his” songs – at least in my mind. For want of better data about whoever sung these songs, I was always setting ‘artist’ tag to the composer’s name for my entire Tamil collection, leaving the ‘composer’ field untouched (and therefore extremely in disorder).

Today I decided to have a little conversation with iTunes, and this little Applescript dialogue got the job done:

tell application "iTunes"
set myTracks to (tracks of playlist "Pop")
repeat with x in myTracks
set artistName to artist of x
set the composer of x to artistName
end repeat
end tell

Feel free to explore Doug’s Applescript examples and play around, you can probably enjoy talking to iTunes as much as your evening bar chats.

What Skills are needed for Senior Management Positions in IT?

If it’s an IT shop, when you’re moving up the ladder, what kind of skills are going to really make a difference? This seems everyone’s guess, so I actually spoke to everyone (well, at least everyone I could catch..) and compiled a small map.

Senior Management Position - Skills Map


Is it too much? too less?

Bash Party: RIP exec inside find

I use find too frequently to search for things, and most often, spawn some external command using -exec to process the results individually. This ars article gave a pretty neat idea to speed up find/exec to order of 10+ times; the technique uses xargs to remove the execution loop.

This is a sample run from my Ubuntu box:

$ time find . -name '*.properties' -exec wc -l {} \; -print
real    0m1.788s
user    0m0.096s
sys    0m0.120s

$ time find . -name '*.properties' -print0 | xargs -0 wc -l
real    0m0.169s
user    0m0.044s
sys    0m0.096s