Record playback with Pulse Audio

Suppose you play a music stream through firefox and you want an easy way to record this.

Do the following steps

  • Install Pulse Audio Device chooser
  • Start it and choose Volume Control from the menu
  • Select the 'Input Devices' tab and select 'Monitors' (bottom right)
  • Set this device as default
  • Start the Sound Recorder application
  • Select the Recording tab
  • Select Application (bottom right)
  • Go to Sound Recorder and start recording, the application should appear in the Recording tab

Rescale 1080p to 720p with ffmpeg

I use the ubuntu v8.10 (intrepid ibex) distribution.

At first I could not tell ffmpeg to use the h264 codec no matter what I tried. It seems ubuntu comes with a stripped version.
Then I realised my only other option was to build it from source.
Fortunately there is great howto detailing the exact steps for my linux distribution.

Follow the instructions to the letter and you should have no problem. At this time I use r17987 (from the trunk).

To rescale a movie to 720p in one pass:

MythTV and DVB-S2 card with a Technisat Multytenne dish

My Hauppage HVR-4000 arrived just before the weekend.
The online store,, I bought it from has been really punctual in the follow-up and delivery so kudos to them!
I suspected this weekend will not get me much sunlight...

Anyway saturday morning I launched myself in the installation of the HVR-4000.

Before the actual insertion of the card Mythbuntu needs to be upgraded.
Upgrade mythbuntu 8.10: 'update-manager -d' should offer you an upgrade path to 'jaunty'. This is necessary since we want to use the new S2API in the 2.6.28 kernel to enable DVB-S2.


Automount usb storage

Being fed up with using pmount and editing /etc/fstab to mount usb devices?

Then apt-get usbmount!

Edit /etc/usbmount/usbmount.conf to add the 'vfat' filetype.

EDIT: No, usbmount is obsolete compared to pmount. This has been a long-running PITA and I finally found the problem. If your gnome-volume-manager refuses to automount you should probably check your /etc/fstab for errors. Mine had an uncommented comment.

Replace cable tv subscription with satellite tv

We want:
- Easily have access to a lot more channels
- Cheaper hardware
- Choice in hardware and subscriptions to different providers
- HD channels
- Recording on mythtv
- TV Vlaanderen provider (unfortunately the only way we can get our local channels).

We do not want:
- Limited channel listings only, one size does not fit all
- Leased hardware
- Expensive subscription
- Dependence on one provider
- Support monopolies which use proprietary dvb (i.e. Belgacom and Telenet).

Drupal v6 module: vocabulary based action

This drupal module needs taxonomy and trigger enabled.
It lets you define an e-mail template and choose multiple vocabularies.
If a new node is created it will check its taxonomy terms against the chosen vocabularies and send an e-mail if it matches.


Eclipse v3.2 and PHPEclipse v1.1.9 (latest) combination does not work in Ubuntu (intrepid ibex).
You will have to use the previous PHPEclipse version which is v1.1.8.
Find it on the sourceforge download page.

Special note for ubuntu users: remove the openjdk and gij packages and then apt-get sun-java6-jdk !

Upgrade to Mythbuntu

I took a shot at installing Mythbuntu over a working but dead-end custom Debian installation. A few helpful remarks:
  • When configuring tv-out during installation I forgot it is normal when getting no signal on the monitor after the reboot of the first installation. So choose recovery boot option and select the option to repair x when given a choice.

JPeg image keywords tagger

I have lots of pictures that need to be categorized so I looked into a standard that is used to embed keywords into pictures. Apparently the IPTC standard does that.
This utility was programmed in python and converted to windows exe with py2exe.
It uses this python class to handle the IPTC data of an image.
You can download the windows files here and the bytecode here. Just decompress them somewhere and read the README.txt inside.
The bytecode requires you to download and install wxpython.

Do what you wanna--do what you will

"Do what you wanna--do what you will;
Just don't mess up your neighbor's thrill--
and when you pay the bill, kindly leave a little tip
to help the next poor sucker on his one-way trip."
-- Frank Zappa, "The Meek Shall Inherit Nothing"

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