Archive for January, 2006

X mouse pointer corruption

Friday, January 6th, 2006

For some random reason, certain applications (chiefly wine) are restting my x cursor to an inverted colour mode where the mouse cursor is completely black and thus impossible to locate on a black console. This is obviously a bug in my X server because a call to:

xsetroot -cursor_name left_ptr -fg white -bg black

and similar, makes no difference, nor does using -rv to reverse the display colours. Happily, until I get around to finding what is responsible for this, I can force it to reset by calling a script which switches cursor and then back again. If you have the same problem, try:

xsetroot -cursor_name pirate
xsetroot -cursor_name left_ptr

stick this somewhere and have an icon on your panel to call it.


P.S. X annoys me, GNOME really annoys me for not making it easy to figure out what the hell it’s doing with things like mouse cursors.

Happy new year 2006

Monday, January 2nd, 2006

Photo: Jon Masters at the Computer History Museum in Mountain View, California. For more photos from my most recent trips to the US and Canada, check out the gallery.

Well, it’s 2006, soon to be year of the dog and the apocalypse hasn’t quite come yet. I saw in the new year with my folks this year – kinda not what I had been planning, but it was fun. Hopefully Hannah and Joe and Kat and David had fun too. I have various aspirations for this year, and am trying to be better organised but of course managed to blow that already by not getting much useful stuff done yesterday. I’m trying harder today by actually sitting down and having a writing session to try to salvage bits of my schedule.

My mother made me some pumpkin pie, which was pretty close to the real thing, and has stated that she’s not adverse to various other concoctions in the absense of me improving my culinary skills. I’m annoyed that you can’t even buy pumpkin pie mix in US owned stores here – like ASDA – what’s with that? Who could possibly think the British wouldn’t enjoy eating that but would enjoy drinking Coors? (I’ll exclude a few million FIW people here – people who use the words “Football”, “Innit”, and “wot?” as the basis for their lexicon – people here who generally want to get shipped off somewhere for an extended visit). Crazy, all of them.

I installed Crossover for the benefit of my writing, and discovered that 15GBP isn’t a lot to pay to be able to have all of those nasty plugins and apps available if you need them. It also runs iTunes – not very well yet (it’s not getting enough CPU to avoid pops and skips – otherwise known as xruns – when the system does anything else) – sufficiently to download music and then convert it into less evil formats for long term ipod storage, which is semi-useful when one wants something more heavyweight than DVD Jon’s excellent Sharpemusique.

Apparently it can take (at worst) 42 months to find out about Canadian immigration applications (though you can apply for a work permit to cover that period if you have a job offer) but the averge is a year or so. So, if I apply in the summer or later in the year then I end up sticking around here for a while yet. That’s not a bad thing since it gives me time to sort out other odds and ends in my life, like driving and finances beyond the 10K they want you to have handy. Ever feel you’re just in the wrong country?


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