Spit screen with tmux

Split screen tmux

I have been a long time screen user when connecting to remote machines that I don't want to lose work if the connection drops, but I just recently started using tmux and I've been won over by it's split screen feature.

To start tmux just run tmux and it will start and give you a nice status bar at the bottom. You can list out your tmux sessions with the command tmux ls, and then reattach to your session with tmux attach and the session number.

By far my favorite use for tmux is split screen so I can view multiple process outputs on the same server without opening another ssh window. tmux uses ctrl-b for it's commands. ctrl-b " will split the window horizontally, and ctrl-b % will split the window vertically.

The tmux manual has got to be one of the largest man pages ever, it can do much much more too.

Mac OS X command files

I wanted a simple way to start and stop MySQL on my Mac laptop without having to go the command line and run mysql.server start all the time.

I found .command files. They are basically shell scripts starting with !#/bin/sh that you make executable and name ending in .command. Make a file with the contents of your script, then save it with a name like startmysql.command

!#/bin/sh
/usr/local/bin/mysql.server start

Using Open with in the Get Info command you can tell Mac OS X to run the .command file within your favorite terminal program.

Now you have a file to start or stop your mysql server without typing the command each time.

MacBook Air Unboxing

MacBook Air Unboxing

I couldn't take looking at the boring gray crunchbang linux desktop anymore. Shouldn't this computer stuff be fun? So I switched back to the Mac after about 8 years away from them. I had used a Powerbook G4, and before that a Quadra, a IIci, and a 512k, so my history with macs goes back to nearly the beginning. In doing web development, my development on the Powerbook was never quite close enough to the linux server, and weird issues would often crop up between the two configurations. This pushed me to switch to linux on the desktop.

For a while I was very happy with Ubuntu on a Thinkpad. With the advent of Unity and Gnome 3 it has left behind some of the conventions that have been part of window, menu, icon, and pointer interfaces for decades. I tried to live with it for a while, but things got to me after some time. One of the things that drove me absolutely crazy in unity was that it hides menu headings when not hovering over the menu bar. They think this is ok too:

"We hide the menu by default in Unity because the menu provides no useful information to which you can refer just by looking at it" - Mark Shuttleworth

With the Mac having a command line that runs most of what I need, and linux having taken over the cloud and virtual machines there is now almost no reason to run one as a web development desktop. If I need to do something with a linux server I can run it in a VM or rent one for pennies per hour on the internet.

I'm also happy to be back on the Mac with applications like iPhoto and iTunes. Which while iTunes is a monstrosity of a program, when you have over 50 gigabytes of music like I do, it's a necessary monstrosity. Nothing else ever been as easy to navigate it. I miss being able to easily enjoy my music collection.

I'm also looking forward to using iPhoto when taking raw photos out of my camera too.

Foggy River Morning

I can process photos out of my camera very easily, and I don't have to reboot into windows to use the stripped down software that came with the camera or use linux with rawtherapee (which didn't have the best color management).

Since I've restarted my blog here, I want to make sure I can still run the jekyll blog generator on the command line and still scp blog posts up to my server too, or else you wouldn't be able to read this.

I think the 11" MacBook Air will be a nice little web development and blogging machine.

Crunchbang Linux

Crunchbang Linux Install

I have not been thrilled with the Unity or Gnome 3 interfaces and have come very close to giving up on linux on the desktop and switching back to the Mac. However I still like the linux command line and apt package managers, and most things I make are deployed to linux, so i've hesitated.

This weekend I installed crunchbang linux on my laptop. I've always liked openbox, which is a simple window manager, but it took lots of configuration to get it working like a whole desktop. Crunchbang takes debian and adds a nicely configured openbox desktop to it.

And it has the best disclaimer ever: CrunchBang Linux could possibly make your computer go CRUNCH! BANG!

Jekyll Blogging

I'm relaunching my blog with Jekyll, and I hope to post more often. There is a new wordpress vulnerability and I've got 28000 spam comments in my wordpress blog, so I'm giving up on wordpress - but i've got lots of old posts in wordpress. Not sure how i'll more those over here yet.

With jekyll I can manage it all locally on my computer and then publish my changes with a single scp.