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March 14 2016: dBASE II, Scribus and Raspberry Pi 3 vs Odroid C2

Posted by John ( 9 minute read )

John H picked up on a discussion at the previous meeting to give a presentation on dBASE II. He had never upgraded to dBASE III because it was not backwards compatible with dBASE II (other programs of that era like WordStar and Supercalc had maintained backwards compatibility; so it was possible to use them on both CP/M and DOS machines) and because dBASE II had an operator similar to LIKE "%<substring>%" in SQL which had not been implemented in dBASE III. As he had made extensive use of this operator in his programs, an upgrade to dBASE III would have involved an extensive rewrite of all his programs.

February 8 2016: Parquet, Impala, Internet connections, Linuxone and snooping

Posted by John ( 4 minute read )

Alice started us off with Optimising Impala Queries, or a ‘Distributed Lego Community’, a demonstration of the principles behind Parquet, a columnar storage format, and Impala, an analytic database, for the Hadoop ecosystem. Columnar storage formats overcome the burden of reading every row of a table based database such as SQL.

January 11 2016: Erlang, Ian Murdock, FPGAs and openSPARC

Posted by John ( 2 minute read )

With no presentations prepared, we talked about this and that, from Elixir, a concurrent programming language that runs on Erlang, to openSPARC.

2015 Christmas Quiz Answers

Posted by John ( 2 minute read )
  1. From which operating system did Linus Torvalds draw inspiration for Linux? Minix
  2. Which was the first recognisable Linux Distribution? Softlanding Linux System [the Manchester distribution is an alternative answer]

December 14 2015: Pine64, ARM GPUs, Cassandra, GPIO and GPG

Posted by John ( 6 minute read )

Brian introduced us to the Pine 64, an expandable single board computer starting at $15 for 512MB. Though a 2GB version was advertised, it appeared that only the 512MB and 1GB versions are currently available.

Stephane then recommended the Charbax videos and in particular the interview with Bernhard Rosenkränzer on the Android team at Linaro and Rob Clark of Red Hat who works on the open source GPU driver called Freedreno for Qualcomm’s ARM processors’ Adreno GPU. He noted that ARM GPUs are all bound to specific implementations of the GPU which makes producing common code very difficult.

November 9 2015: openSUSE LEAP, Realtime trains, GPIO, Libreboot and browser fingerprinting

Posted by John ( 1 minute read )

John H began with a presentation on the background to the recent release of openSUSE LEAP 42.1.

Alice then demonstrated using the Realtime Trains API to download and analyse information about train movements on Train workings; the source code is on GitHub.

October 12 2015: Websites, Windows 10, Frutiger and backups

Posted by John ( 5 minute read )

John H described the work he was doing on the Heath Old Boys Association website; this was a 2003 vintage frame based website which did not play well with modern devices; after he had explored various options, he had decided that the best option was to build a new HTML5 website on the lines described by Dave Fisher in his 2010 talk to BradLUG in front of the old website so that people could continue to access the old website while the new one was under construction.

September 14 2015 Seventh birthday review and Git

Posted by John ( 1 minute read )

A select group of members gathered to celebrate the seventh birthday of BradLUG; there was cake and then John H presented a review of our seventh year which provoked a lot of discussion ...

August 10 2015 youtube-dl, get_iplayer and Stephen Bourne on sh

Posted by John ( 1 minute read )

For the first time ever, no-one had come prepared with anything. So we welcomed Brian from Spain, talked about youtube-dl and get_iplayer and watched the Stephen Bourne lecture about the Early days of Unix and the design of sh.

July 13 2015 Cybersecurity, mesh networking, tools and snooping

Posted by John ( 5 minute read )

John drew attention to the recent change in the MariaDB 10 .mysql_history file format which means that any old .mysql_history file is overwritten [he later found the following thread in the RedHat Bugzilla which suggests that the issue has been around for a while but is only cropping up as distros update to MariaDB 10].