OpenELEC runs great on the Raspberry Pi2

I’ve had a Raspberry Pi2 since earlier this year when it first came out. I had gotten it in a package which included a see-through plastic case, a miniSD card pre-loaded with Noobs on it, a wifi USB dongle, USB power supply, and HDMI cable. Since I already had a wireless keyboard and mouse I could use and the 27″ ASUS MX279H monitor I connect up to my laptop when I have more serious work to do had HDMI inputs so I was all ready to go. I actually couldn’t wait and ended up firing it up at work – running through the Rasbian setup and surfing the web a little bit. The Pi was a bit slower than I had expected, but it was amazing how useable it was for the price!

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Super Star Trek in Python

OK kids, make sure you have python installed so you can fire photons in this python remix of the classic Fortran Super Star Trek classic terminal game from the mid 70s. I played this game (poorly) in High School and had gotten frustrated trying to run the original Fortran version some while ago. Turns out ESR had ported (a C port of) the original Fortran code which runs great. Make sure you pull out the latest version from git since its got some essential bug fixes from:
https://developer.berlios.de/git/?group_id=2492 (this link is dead as of 151111)

See Bill Lahti’s java and android port of the game!
https://blahti.wordpress.com/2014/02/03/java-sst/

and Tom Almys page

Here’s ESR’s original G+ post and there’s some more banter about the history of the game in the comments to his blog post.

There’s a nice writeup of the history of the game and how its played here.

Here it is, running happily in terminal under Ubuntu 11.10:

minitube is what TV should be

I don’t pay for TV. Right now I pay for a cable connection to the internet which I really have no reason to complain about. It goes down sometimes, but for the most part Cablevision provides me with a fairly decent (speedy) connection, and they offer pretty good service to boot when things go belly up. That said, I don’t pay for their television service, because like the TV service from any provider, they only offer bundles of channels and not ala carte. So be it, you can still get DTV if you live close to the city, or receive those same over the air signals right over the cable if you have a TV with a QAM antenna. In fact, if I couldn’t get local PBS over my cable connection free then sending them cash every once in a while woudn’t make much sense after the transition to DTV since we can no longer receive them over the air (too far away).

For folks like me, an application like minitube is a special gift. I’ve had many a “Youtube night” where a bunch of us sat huddled around the big LCD screen and played one…video…at…a…time as each took turns searching for their favorite videos. minitube is just what I was looking for, a way to kick off a series of related youtube videos without additional user input. While it isn’t what I was looking for exactly when I told the high pressure salesman in the “disconnect” office that I wanted to just pay for the channels I wanted to watch, its a way to watch a sort of customized TV channel (without having to get up *every* couple minutes) with minimal effort. The only thing that’s missing should be obvious – commercials. Which is sort of the reason why I was a little hesitant to even mention this program since YouTube will certainly decide they need to monetize this somehow if and when they determine a lot of people are using YouTube in this, the clearly coolest way.