Bernard demonstrated the Python Package Index for which anyone can write packages. He showed how you could set it up and then how you could download a package to a virtual environment with:
python3 -m venv ~/v5
where v5 is a virtual environment in userspace. To activate that virtual environment, you enter
John noted that Maplin is back as an online store. In response to Mike’s account of the problems he had had trying to install Arch on his computer, John suggested that he could delete all the existing partitions on the hard drive except the very first (very small) one by using System Rescue and then start the installation process afresh.
John managed to demonstrate System Rescue on his own computer by turning off UEFI, using Legacy to load it — though it would only work with the VESA drivers on his computer — and then reverting to UEFI. He said that the documentation is excellent but that they have their own way of creating a bootable USB which John had found you could get round by creating the CD version and then copying it to a USB.
The meeting began with a range of chit-chat. John H, commenting on a note about solution focused journalism, remarked that a very good journalist had told him that you always end a piece with something that left the reader thinking, not a neat solution. This led into a discussion of the principles of writing a good article and how, translated into radio, the principle that there should be a new point at least every 90 seconds was well worth following.
Darren reported that he had not been able to download a version of BlueJ which was compatible with the version used by the Open University.
Bernard began by demonstrating Stellarium, the open source planetarium.
John H then asked about created a looping video to run on a display probably using a Raspberry Pi.
Mike asked about getting a new computer on which to install Linux and John suggested he have a look at PCSpecialist in Wakefield from whom Brian had obtained a laptop which he was very happy with.
Brian shared a problem he had with KDE Activities; there was a Default activity on the desktop but, while it was possible to give the activity a blank name, it was not possible to remove the icon identifying it.
He also mentioned a problem with File Associations for which he had downloaded a separate program but John was able to show him System Settings->Applications->File Associations which allows full configuration of file associations.
Brian demonstrated Glances, a cross-platform system monitoring tool written in Python, running in
tmux on his server.
He then said that he had installed Nextcloud using a server running on a Raspberry Pi. This is relatively easy on a Raspberry Pi 2, less so on a Raspberry Pi 3. It involves downloading the server image onto a desktop computer, copying it onto an SD card, putting this in the Raspberry Pi, booting it and then updating the image.