Facebook – A social network?

Nearly everyday it is one of my Facebook friend’s birthday. Within some few ours they collect good wishes on their walls. Does Facebook make the people more social?

Checking the birthdays of my friends, I do not rely on pages like Facebook, but my own (digital) calendar. All the other 200 Facebook friends, who are not found in my calendar are people I know, but not people I would call for congratulation. And then I do not send a Facebook message either.

My own birthday is not visible on Facebook. Till now only my sister posted there on my wall. But I had my sister on the phone as well. A friend, whose birthday is today as well and who has it visible on Facebook got already 5 posts with congratulations.

Does Facebook make the people more social, as it is becoming easier to congratulate where it would have been really difficult otherwise (because of distance or anything else)? Or more unsocial, as everybody is relying on platforms like this and the personal binding is moving in the background? At least I am the first one posting on someone’s else wall. What I only did because of the platform reminding me.

You can exchange Facebook with any other big social network, if you want.

Comments on the topic are appreciated.


Last week i finished a first final version of my script CSong (Current Song). CSong is using the Ubuntu notification system, to show which song is currently played in Banshee.

Once in a while I want to check what is the title (or the artist / the album) of the song, that is currently played, without opening Banshee.

The actual version shows the title, artist and the album (with cover art). Of course only if the song tags are set correctly. If the song is changed, the bubble is updated as well.

You can easily install the program via my PPA, (the source code is available there as well):

$ sudo add-apt-repository ppa:phylu/csong
$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get install csong

The current song is now shows in a bubble if you use the command csong in a terminal. I have set a keyboard shortcut, to have good access to my song information all the time.

Where is my bandwith?

Somethimes I am wondering what is going on with my internet connection. Firefox is not loanding anything although I have a transfer rate of 7 kB/s (what is somehow fast here). But why? To track everything with programs like wireshark was too big for me figuring out, which program is using the bandwith.

But I finally found a simple program called nethogs in the package archive.

After installing the package nethogs

$ sudo apt-get install nethogs

you run the program from the terminal

$ sudo nethogs interface

wheras the interface is the network interface you want to monitor, such as eth0 (usually for the cable connection of your first network card), wlan0 (usually the first wlan interface) or in my case ppp0 as it is a mobile broadband connection. And you get a nice overview over the programs using the network interface.

First Meeting LUG Mbarara

Yesterday we had the first meeting of the Linux User Group Mbarara. We met in the Computer-Lab of Mbarara University of Science and Technology (MUST) and about 40 people attended this first meeting. Most were students of MUST, but there were as well some from the outside (as me for example).

The first topic was my presentation (Pdf, Xetex), introducing Linux and especially Ubuntu.

Then we discussed what settings would be appropriate for the LUG Mbarara. Here is the result:

We will meet once in a month (at a Friday 5pm), and until somebody has a better idea, we will meet somewhere at MUST. Next meeting will be on Friday 18. June 5:00 pm.

The Ubuntu 10.04 CDs, I gave out for fee, were sold like hotcakes. It was amazing. Quite a lot of the students had already some experience with Linux. I did not expect it to be like this. And some also came with their laptops to get a problem fixed. The mainly used Linux distribution there was the Ultimate Edition a distribution I had never heard about before.

Unfortunately I could not make so many pictures as I was giving the presentation myself.

Thanks everybody who was involved in the planning for this meeting for the great work you have done. As I arrived, I just connected my laptop and we started. Special thanks to Robert from MUST for setting up the place, Thomas for his input for my presentation and the help during the event and Simon and Kyle for inspiring me.  😉

I am looking forward to the next meeting because I think it will be a benefit for all of us. I hope I could make some advertisement for Free Software and Linux especially. And at least I had a lot of fun.

Linux User Group Mbarara

I was so impressed by the Ubuntu Release Party in Kampala some weeks ago that I have initiated a Mbarara Branch of the Linux User Group Uganda.

Our first meeting will be this Friday 21. May at 5:00 pm at Mbarara University of Science and Technology. More information about the event can be found on: linux.or.ug

Thanks in advance everybody who helped setting up this thing.