Posts filed under “Linux”

I've been using Linux as my daily for the best part of 20 years now, and I still learn new things all the time. Here are things I am learning!

A cheap Ubuntu-friendly drawing tablet recommendation: XP-Pen Star G640

This is a quick recommendation for the XP-Pen G640 drawing tablet, for those fellow Linux users who like to do a bit of a scribble. It costs a penny shy of £40 as I write this, and it works flawlessly out of the box on Ubuntu 18.04 and 20.04 with no drivers or any other fiddling required. Just plug it in and go.

This is a great little tablet for doodling, whiteboarding in the working-at-home era, pwning noobs on Skribblio and generally messing about. For all I know someone might even buy one of these, download Super Street's car colouring pages[1], fire up MyPaint and burn a few hours in the evening when lockdown gives them nothing better to do.

Finished Super Street colouring page: A80 Supra
Hey, I'm not here to judge!

I shall give a necessary disclaimer that I occasionally doodle stuff just for myself (it helps my concentration in read-only tasks, and when I am in deep thought) and that I am not an artist at all. If I was I might want something like a few dedicated buttons for commonly-used operations like undo and erase. And I'm sure that in many other ways, someone using this for actual artwork would find this vastly inferior to things costing several times as much money. But for me, this cheap tablet works great!

[1] Alternative source as Super Street have, for GDPR reasons, blocked the whole of Europe from accessing their site. :(

Today I found: Bastard Tetris

Screenshot of `bastet`, the Bastard Tetris

This, known as bastet to its friends, has been around since at least 2005. I heard of it today. It's a variety of Tetris, but one that will always queue up the optimally worst next piece. ("So kinda like normal Tetris then", I thought.) And there's a devilish mode in which it will not tell you what piece is up next either. That one was too hardcore even for me.

It's available in the Ubuntu package repositories as bastet, and on Homebrew for the Mac, and apparently there is even a Windows version.

You may have heard of the Tetris effect; I wonder what damage this hilariously evil variant could do if you played it enough. The stuff of literal nightmares?


TIL: old logs can take up a nontrivial amount of disk space on Ubuntu

I know, it is the Current Year, you don't need to worry about disk space. Until you do! Via a comment on this article I found this to purge a bunch of old log entries (on my personal machines I don't care about anything more than a day old, tweak according to your situation):

$ sudo journalctl --vacuum-time=1d
[literally six million lines of text]
Vacuuming done, freed 616.1M of archived journals from /var/log/journal/8ab90b50ecb94b5ba09cacf15a486a8e