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Hide Trackbacks 1.1.3

1 min read

Hide Trackbacks is a WordPress plugin that hides pingbacks and trackbacks from your website comments.

I’ve updated the plugin to indicate it works correctly with WordPress 4.9.9 and earlier. It's now also up to PHP 7.2 compatible, and has a number of small fixes to improve code legibility and alignment with the WordPress Coding Standards.

Transitioning to Gutenberg

1 min read

The WordPress Project says:

The Classic Editor plugin will be officially supported until December 31, 2021.

[...]

Since the Classic Editor plugin is central in this transition, we are considering including it with upgrades to WordPress 5.0.

In the context of my professional work with WordPress it would be beneficial to see the Classic Editor plugin be included by default into the installation package. This would signal to plugin and theme developers that we are in a transition phase but supporting the existing installations, until Gutenberg is more fully accepted by the wider community. Not doing do could put pressure on smaller developers to just test their updates for Gutenberg only, resulting in a lot of broken sites or a security nightmare where people won’t be able to update to the latet versions of WordPress or their plugins until the teams and processes are ready.

Taking back control

2 min read

Recently, I've come to the conclusion that it's the nature of realtime social media to cause drama and upset. In the search for ever increasing thirst for gossip, instant reactions are stimulated so heavily that  there is no time to research or read about the context of a story, and open discussion isn't possible when group mentality means we must be outraged or be part of the problem.

At the same time, people have never engaged so little with web content, being the metaphorical frogs in the pressure cooker of Facebook and Twitter that is modern society. We are the product that is monetised by the advertising dollars that demand page views in a broken system of inflatable viewership figures.

In the music scene, the illusion of hyper promotion and like-networking results in a feed of people and content I have little interest in following, in the hope that they will listen to what I have to say.

Pointless and bad for my health. So therefore I'm distancing myself more from social media now.

If you want to follow what I have to say about technology, read vandragt.com. If you are interested in my music visit cloudseer.me. They will soon have a mailinglist and RSS feeds without advertising and like buttons.

Howto install Cryptomator for OpenSuse

1 min read

Linux is so userfriendly, so the rpm that can be downloaded is missing dependencies. However, I'm quickly becoming a fan of zypper and OpenSUSE's dependency handling, and comes to the rescue:

sudo zypper in cryptomator.rpm

Even though cryptomator made a mistake in signing part of the application, it can still be installed by pressing ignore. Are you sure you want to do that? It seems a bit crap for such an essential utility.

Installing Dropbox on OpenSUSE Tumbleweed

1 min read

Both the official RPM and the discover package failed for me due to missing dependencies, without specifying what those are. However the following worked:

sudo zypper install dropbox-cli
dropbox start -i
dropbox autostart

So you want to become a neckbeard?

2 min read

Having wasted too much time installing Ubuntu on a laptop recently, I thought it would be helpful for the future self to document the issues.

Issues

I'm seeing one or more of the following issues with Ubuntu 18.04 LTS:
  • Missing text on the login screen
  • second monitor switching off
  • Hangs
  • Won't boot  directly into the OS
Install Ubuntu 16.04 LTS which is not a piece of garbage.
Migrate SSH keys from Putty to OpenSSH https://askubuntu.com/questions/818929/login-ssh-with-ppk-file-on-ubuntu-terminal/818932
What are the correct permissions for the .ssh folder? Typically you want the .ssh directory permissions to be 700 (drwx------) and the public key (.pub file) to be 644 (-rw-r--r--). Your private key (id_rsa) should be 600 (-rw-------). Lastly, your home directory should not be writeable by the group or others (at most 755 (drwxr-xr-x)).
How do I connect to our team networkshare automatically on startup?
sudo su
apt install cifs-utils
echo "//path/to/windows-share /mnt/team cifs credentials=/etc/samba/credentials,uid=1000 0 0" >> /etc/stab
cat > /etc/samba/credentials <<EOC
username=UserName
password=PassWord
EOC
chown root.root /etc/samba/credentials && chmod 400 /etc/samba/credentials
Change the username and password appropriately verify your userid is 1000 with id -u UserName
I skipped  creating a passphase for my encrypted home directory, how do I do it now?  run "ecryptfs-unwrap-passphrase" in the terminal
How to stop the mouse sticking to the edges of the display https://askubuntu.com/questions/119281/what-is-the-function-of-the-sticky-edges-on-off-setting-in-di...
Can't install vagrant plugins Download vagrant from vagrantup.com
nfsd is not installed sudo apt-get install nfs-kernel-server
vagrant booting vms reports a timetout delete (rm) the IdentityFile mentioned in vagrant ssh-config

This document will get updated as I stumble and fix other issues.

App Alternatives

Clipboard manager https://hluk.github.io/CopyQ/
Remote connection manager https://snapcraft.io/pac-vs
Google Drive https://www.howtogeek.com/196635/an-official-google-drive-for-linux-is-here-sort-of-maybe-this-is-al...
Phrase Expansion https://leehblue.com/ubuntu-text-expander/ https://github.com/leehblue/texpander
Screen Recorder Kazam (https://askubuntu.com/a/29954), installs well with apt. Alternatively Simple Screen Recorder.

A People Centred Web

2 min read

Have you ever tried to leave a social network? Want to be free to move web platforms because your needs have changed? Perhaps you might no longer agree with the business practices employed by the service provider, or no longer see the value in paying for having content monetised.

Currently, this means you have to build up new social connections and can't move over your friends as they might not be on the new network. This is a dark pattern employed by the investor-heavy digital media giants to keep people siloed, making it easy to move in but burdensome to move out.

Social networks can then add messages and events on top, keeping the money making engine oiled with an persuasive analytics layer. Other places like media hosting providers where it seems a subscription fee supports the music uploaded to the system but causes artists to lose control over their fan base.

The silo is responsive and cushy yes, but ultimately the users are at the whims of the platform. I have accounts on hundreds of websites because every site wants to identify their users. Sites start their own network; to build things on top off.

It seems to me that it is very wasteful to keep building social graphs and user account systems when we can do so much better. Instead, have the person be in control of the people they interact with, and manage the information that is displayed to them!

Imagine launching a dashboard app that sits on your computer and is independent from any information sources. It's free of tracking and open source to us all and doesn't do too many things. It doesn't belong to anybody but yourself. It's just a window where information from friends can be shown in a timeline. It can connect to a friend's dashboard so you can stay in touch. Hey what's new? It manages who you follow.

Web services you visit can ask permission to add information on your dashboard. Want to see when concert tickets are available for your favourite artist? Allow them to display that. Allow the event provider to display dates of the next group meeting, and the music hoster to add in new tracks from that producer you follow.

Never again be stuck in a silo. Disconnect a source and attach another. A social reader for the new generation.

Open your mind

1 min read

Interesting article about developing your passion and keeping and open mindset.

The belief that interests arrive fully formed and must simply be “found” can lead people to limit their pursuit of new fields and give up when they encounter challenges, according to a new Stanford study.

Read the article

Fix slow DNS responses on Ubuntu

1 min read

I've been finding that browsing has been slow for me lately on my linux box, which has Ubuntu 16.04 installed. After some investigation it seemed worthwhile to try to install a DNS cache to speed up DNS queries. This has sped up successive DNS queries from 21ms to 0ms, removing sluggishness.

sudo apt install bind9
cd /etc/resolvconf/resolv.conf.d
sudo echo "nameserver 127.0.0.1" >> head

Apply the configuration as follows:

sudo resolvconf -u

The improvement can be seen by using dig to query a domain and looking at the Query time output. After the first dig, subsequent digs return in 0 ms.