Series 6 - listen to the show

Episode 12a, Episode 12, Episode 11, Episode 10, Episode 9, Episode 8, Episode 7, Episode 6, Episode 5, Episode 4, Episode 3, Episode 2, Episode 1

The Binary Times - Series 6 Episode 12a

Sun 22 Dec, 2019

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Its the last episode of Season 6.


00:28 Wayne welcomes us to Season 6 Episode 12 of the Binary Times. It's looking clear in Bristol and foggy in Kilkishen. Christmas is only around the corner! Mark sympathises with their Australian listeners with the weather and fires they're having to put up with out there. Mark goes on to tell us he's found a new graphical cli weather app. You invoke it by typing the following: finger [your location] This will give you the meteogram for your location, including temperature, along with symbols for sun, cloud, rain etc. for the next 24 hours or so.

05:05 Wayne asks Mark what he's been at and Mark tells us that he's got a new laptop, a Sony Vaio from one of their Australian listeners. Despite being sent the laptop gratis, customs still wanted their pound of flesh, as is their want. Mark loves the display on the laptop, and he thinks it may well become his daily driver. He installed Ubuntu 19.10 on it and it all went incredibly easily. He congratulates the Ubuntu team on doing such an incredible job on making such a great and easy to use desktop operating system. The lads discuss Ubuntu MATE and what Wayne had to do to get the date on the notification bar on 19.10.

Mark goes on to look back over what they've been looking at over the year. After a brief trip back to the early noughties, Mark tells us how well Nextcloud is doing at keeping our private data secure. He goes on to tell us that LibreOffice has continued to improve throughout the year and that they are currently looking for help, and they have suggestions as to how you can help.

The guys go on to discuss the recurring theme of Humble Bundles. A current bundle that catches their eye is the O'Reilly Classics Bundle. The guys go on to discuss a bit of humble bundle fatigue but seem to conclude that they'll continue buying them. The discussion moves onto reading, reading articles online, and the modern mind being distracted. Wayne goes on to say that he got further with Automate the Boring Stuff on Udemy than he did with the book itself, the video tutorials helped as Wayne feels he's better with video than printed material. The guys give a shout out to Al Sweigart, the author, who releases his books under a creative commons license. Wayne tells us he's getting the 2nd edition of automate the boring stuff, and Mark goes through the "what's new in the 2nd Edition of Automate the boring stuff". Wayne's already looking forward to resting his mug of tea on that book Christmas day!

Wayne goes on to talk about the wonderful Unfa, who's brilliance is depressing for the rest of us mere mortals. Wayne mentions the new Vital wave synth, by Matt Tytel and recommends trying it out. Wayne goes on to speak about the virtues of Ableton and this sparks a bit of a conversion on the virtues of software. Wayne also recommends LMMS as something to try. Wayne tells us he recently sold an APC 40 midi controller that worked well with Ableton. Wayne rounds out the discussion by stating he will use open source software whenever he can, though Ableton is hard to beat! Also, go buy the the 2nd edition of automate the boring stuff book!

44:04 Wayne tells us about some of the open source hacky stuff he's been doing at work with proprietary software. He used Ubuntu MATE to boot into the machines in question, though found Window's 10 doesn't fully shut down when you shut down, rather it hibernates the kernel to allow for quicker bootup. You can turn this off, which Wayne did so that he could delete the profiles as required.

48:05 Wayne decides to get all controversial and say that you need to use Ardour and JACK to do audio, even podcasts. Mark disagrees and thinks Audacity is sufficient to do podcasts. They also disagree on tinwhistle playing.

52:24 Under the Hood! Mark's under the hood is a discussion about a blog article on proton mail that is how to stay private on android, that leads to an open ended discussion about all things telephony and privacy, which touches off of news that was in the Ask Noah Show and poor Disney+ passwords.

Waynes Under the hoods are Ryans Tutorials and Chris Titus' How to secure a web server.

01:09:17 Irish saying of the podcast is Bualadh Bos

Instead of finishing, the lads chat about all the cool things that they could be chatting about next year, and carry on into talking about Desktop Environmnets and Snaps vs Debs / PPAs.

We hope you enjoy the show as much as we did making it!



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The Binary Times - Series 6 Episode 12

Sun 8 Dec, 2019

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The Linux Lads join The Binary Times guys in a one off Xmas mashup.


00:27 Wayne welcomes us to the Linux Lads / Binary Times Christmas mash up show. In this episode Conor, Mark, Mike, Shane and Wayne will be talking about all things Linux!. This should make for some interesting conversation.

00:55 Mike kicks off the disccussion asking whether the end of support for Windows 7 will herald a new golden age of Linux on the desktop. The article from Vivaldi, "Why you should replace Windows 7 with Linux" is discussed before the conversation turns to what distribution would you recommend to new users, and all the ramifications of what that might mean. The conversation swings around to people's acceptance of other systems. Mike thinks change is good. The conversation swings back to business implementations. Shane's seen clever desktop implementations on top of Redhat. Conor asks if there are viable alternatives to Active Directory and Waynes mentions RazDC and Univention. They all agree that they would like to see Linux implemented in their organizations. Mike's is already half and half. Shane asks whether Linux needs to buy into greasy capitalism, leading to some interesting thoughts on the subject. Gnome is seen as being a standard desktop environment that can be targeted as a platfrom. Just as concensus is being reached that next year will be the year of the linux desktop, the conversation turns to open standards, enlightened societies and preaching to the choir. We also discover using Linux helps you to grow to nice old age!

45:53 Shane moves the conversation on to how many Raspberry Pis do we all have. Conor admits to not owning a Raspberry Pi, though he does have a Rock 64. The guys tell us of all their different use cases. Shane's not using his pis. Mike suggests appjar, zenity, Kdialog and bash scripts to help Shane in finding a solution for his use case. He also suggests godot game engine as a possible solution. Mark tells us about the Picade, the Pirate Radio, a weather station thing that's not doing anything and a broken Pi-hole. Wayne tells us he has 10 raspberry pis doing various things, including kodi boxes with a pi tv hat, using motion eye os to capture some frog porn. He's also using Yunohost. Conor mentions ODroid as an alternative to the Raspberry Pi. The guys discuss the great projects the Linux Voice guys used to get up to.

57:44 The guys discuss what hardware they would like to see Linux on. Mike wants to see a decently priced, well specified phone for the masses. Something like a Pinephone, maybe a Pinephone Pro? Shane tells us he is dieing for a large linux tablet or e-reader. Wayne's looking forward to what Pine are going to be doing. All the guys are going to get a Pine Phone, apart from Mark. Shane is buying everthing! Mark would like to see a PowerPC notebook. They are currently fundraising but not hitting their targets.

That pretty much finishes up the Linux Lads / Binary Times Mashup. Christmas Waffling, we hope you've enjoyed it as much as we've enjoyed making it!



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The Binary Times - Series 6 Episode 11

Sun 24 Nov, 2019

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Its our penultimate episode of Season 6, are you excited


00:33 Wayne welcomes us to Series 6 Episode 11 of the Binary Times from a slightly overcast, wintry Bristol. Mark tells us it's much the same in Kilkishen. The outlook is for more wintry weather, imagine that!

03:57 Wayne asks Mark what he's been at. Mark makes an apology to Elive, as his inability to install Elive 3.7.16 two episodes ago was due to a faulty hard drive rather than the distro itself. This leads the conversation around to lightweight distros, old PCs and computing expectations. Mark goes on to tell us that a listener of the show wants to revitalise an old Windows XP laptop. Mark normally recommends Ubuntu MATE to new users to Linux as he feels it provides the best out of the box experience for new users. However, since the machine was quite old, he burned DVDs of Ubuntu MATE, Zorin OS, Elementary and Linux Mint. Wayne reminds us of the plop boot manager. The guys also discuss MXLinux. The general conclusion is that 32 bit computers aren't really worth the hassle.

24:17 Wayne tells us he's been up to quite a bit. He's installed Ubuntu MATE on a Raspberry Pi 3b plus but found it fairly unusable.

25:03 He then goes on to tell us he's been looking into effective sudo use using an article from Dave Mckay. He has an old HP server acting as a file server, and he wants to give his partner the access to it but only certain root privileges, the article helped him do that. The app they use on their phone to start up and shut down the server is duorem.

30:13 Wayne tells us he's updated to NextClooud 17. It wasn't without issues but nothing he couldn't manage with help from the forums. The guys discuss the ease of self hosting and think NextCloud is incredible.

37:20 Wayne goes on to speak about the Sonoj convention, an annual event about music production with free and open source software. The videos of the event are now available online. Wayne gives a huge shout out to FalkTX and his presentation on the Past, Present and Future of the JACK Audio Connection Kit. He also mentions that Unfa does a premiere reveal of Matthew Tytel's new Wavetable Synthesiser 'Vital'.

43:59 Wayne talks about NFS and OpenMediaVault, which was not a good experience.

48:19 Under the Hood - Mark's under the hood highlights Mozilla's buyer's guide and their Manifesto, of which he reads the guiding principles.

Wayne's under the hood is an Q&A by Eben Upton, James Adams and Gordon Hollingworth answering questions about the Raspberry Pi 4.

Wayne mentions humble bundles that caught his eye, being the "Design like a designer" bundle and the "Cybersecurity 2019" bundle by Packt. Mark tells us he got Serial Cleaner for Free, an interesting cat and mouse game.

1:00:38 Irish saying of the show is "Déan deifir!" or Hurry Up!

We hope you enjoy the show as much as we did making it!


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The Binary Times - Series 6 Episode 10

Wed 13 Nov, 2019

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Here we are again for Series 6 Episode 10


00:38 Wayne welcomes us to a slightly late Episode 10 of Series 6. As well as being late, it's late in the day, and it's getting colder, but at least our hosts don't have to report on radioactive fallout as they would have to if they were living in the BladeRunner Universe, the movie of which was of course set in November 2019.

02:53 Wayne asks Mark what he's been at. Mark tells us he's still exercising, that he's been reading "Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep", watching Bladerunner and Bladerunner 2049 and generally geeking out on all things Bladerunner. Mark goes on to tell us that the background ambience has been provided by Crysknife007, which was released under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.. Thank you Crysknife007!

Mark goes on to tell us that he went to Insomnia 2019, and that there was a whole lot going on. Cosplay featured, and Nathan's Crafty Creations was there in his Fallout costume. Romero Games also featured, John and Brenda Romero were there talking about their new game, Empire of Sin, coming out at the start of 2020, which Mark hopes will play on Linux via Proton, or as Wayne suggests, Lutris. Mark tells us how he was able to meet both Romeros after at a meet and greet and was able to get a signed copy of the book Challenges for Game Designers and a signed copy of the Sigil boxed set. Mark goes on to talk about the fact that Sigil came about because people were asking John to make a new episode for doom and he thought it was a pretty cool idea to do something for Dooms 25th Anniversary. Mark tells us that since Doom has been opensourced and he plays other opensource games like SuperTuxKart, Warfork, Warsow, Quake and variants, it inspired him to look into OpenSource Gaming a bit more and he was blown away by what he found! He tells us to go to What is Open Gaming for some definitions of how open source applies to games, and to the Linux Game Consortium, FreeGameDev and Opensource Gaming for more information.

This brings the conversation around to Scratch 3 and how it is being used in Circomedia. One of the teachers there is using Scratch to inspire students to create art. Wayne goes on to speak about Edublocks and how Josh gave a talk about Edublocks at Oggcamp.

18:35 Wayne tells us what he's been up to. He tells us all about Delta Chat and the guys relate their experience. It all sounds good, just need to convince everyone to move to yet another messaging client!

Wayne tells us that he's upgraded his work laptop to Ubuntu MATE 19.10 and tells us about the experience. It all seems to have gone well, with this release being a "significant improvement over 18.04" and Wayne still remaining a committed Ubuntu MATE user. He also provides the following key bindings:

He also tells us that Ubuntu MATE 19.10 has LibreOffice 6.3 installed.

Mark recounts his own tale of updating on a whim to the devel channel on Ubuntu Touch on his tablet after reading this item and it all went well, though he was originally thrown by the lack of scopes.

39:59 Wayne goes on to tell us about setting up local DNS on PFSense. Wayne thinks it's best to do DHCP for everything and use the static leases feature, that way pfSense picks up the local hostname of the device and adds that to the DNS resolver in pfSense. This leads to a discussion around knowing when enough is enough. Mark suggests listening to the BlindBoy Podcast. The guys discuss art and freedom fighting in the face of apathy.

49:46 Under the Hood. Mark's Under the Hood is about Wireframe Magazine, "Lifting the Lid on Video Games", and that it's reached its first anniversary issue. Mark also wishes to draw attention to an article they had in issue 25, called "A World Without Bosses" in which worker owned video game co-ops like The Glory Society, Pixel Pushers Union 512, Motion Twin Games and game worker unions like Game Workers Unite are discussed. Mark thinks these things are important and worth bringing to people's attention.

Wayne's Under the Hood is about the Humble Bundle's Design like a Designer bundle. There's just too much good stuff on humble bundle!

Mark decides to quote some Bladerunner:

“You will be required to do wrong no matter where you go. It is the basic condition of life, to be required to violate your own identity. At some time, every creature which lives must do so. It is the ultimate shadow, the defeat of creation; this is the curse at work, the curse that feeds on all life. Everywhere in the universe.”

Grim stuff!

Wayne rounds out Under the Hood with a tip on Handbrake to set the audio language default to English

Irish saying of the Show: "Téimid uilig amach ina n-aonar" - We all go out alone.

We hope you enjoyed listening as much as we did making it!


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The Binary Times - Series 6 Episode 9

Sat 26 Oct, 2019

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Here we are again for Series 6 Episode 9


00:24 Wayne welcomes us to Episode 9 of Series 6, our Halloween show. The weather is turning properly autumnal, and Wayne loves this kind of weather. It seems Mark loves all types of weather, except the really cold and wet stuff.

02:48 Mark tells us what he's been at. He tells us about a Mozilla website called youtube regrets in which they've gathered peoples' stories about rabbit holes they wished they'd never gone down on you tube. This leads to a discussion around the effectiveness of AI algorithms. To follow, Mark tells us about some videos on Youtube by LibreOffice and found the Meet the Engineering Steering Committee video of interest. Wayne tells us he uses instead of Youtube these days. The fact that invidio has a dark mode reminds Wayne of a darkmode extension for Firefox that Michael Tunnell mentioned previously. Mark is reminded of Terminator Genisys and how our over-dependence on mobile devices spells our doom. This moves the conversation onto privacy issues and the software we use and Wayne brings up what Graham said on Late Night Linux about how Open Software isn't quite as good as Industry standard software yet, and how it is still so important to maintain your skills in industry standard software. Mark had hoped that the European Union's Open Data would have changed the formats and software that we use, but that hasn't happened yet, though the guys talk about open formats for a bit. The conversation moves on to the portability that Office 365 brings and Mark reminds everyone that he has that functionality with Kolabnow

24:44 Wayne brings the lyrical waxing to an end by asking Mark what else he's been at. Mark tells us he's recently picked up a Raspberry Pi 4 with an acrylic case from geekpi. Mark thinks it's definitely a step up from a Raspberry Pi and the case ensures he doesn't burn himself. Wayne tells us that he tried Ubuntu MATE on a Raspberry Pi 3b and found it pretty unusable. He goes on to suggest that it could be due to the SD Card he uses, so he's ordered what was recommended on the Ubuntu MATE site and will report back when he's had a chance to give it a go.

32:57 Mark talks about Elive. They have a new beta released, so he said he'd download it and give it a go. Unfortunately it didn't go well and he was unable to install. Since this happened the night before recording, he's hoping to have another go and report back.

36:58 Wayne tells us about his experience with MXLinux and that didn't go well either. He had problems with how he uses Multiboot USB. He thinks it may be that MXLinux and the likes of Bunsenlabs need their installer to be run from CD. So neither of the guys were able to accomplish their production meeting goals, so much for production meetings, though Wayne has created a video of his thoughts on MXLinux on a Virtual Machine.

44:59 Mark changes the topic of conversation by talking about Slimbook's collaboration with the PowerPC Laptop. Mark noticed that the desktop shown in the presentation video was MATE.

50:44 Under the Hood: Wayne's been running Thunderbird for a long time now, and lately he's noticed he's been getting more spam. To try and tackle it, he's provided a two links to filter spam in Thunderbird. He also mentions his 4GB log file for JACK, which he had to get rid of, so if you're using JACK make sure and keep an eye on your logs.

Mark makes a hash of describing crypt!

54:35 Irish saying of the show is "Freagramid na ceisteanna" or we answer the questions!

We hope you enjoy the show as much as we did making it!


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The Binary Times - Series 6 Episode 8

Sat 12 Oct, 2019

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The Binary Times show, the lads are off on one again


00:29 Wayne welcomes us to Series 6 Episode 8 from a slightly overcast, take it as it comes Bristol. Mark tells us it's a bit of a mixed bag in Kilkishen, classic autumnal stuff. Mark pre-empts Wayne's queries by telling us he's still working on his core during this loong fortnight, after which the guys muse about the longevity of the show.

03:33 The guys discuss International Day against DRM. It's a wide ranging discussion covering various aspects of digital locks. Mark describes the dust jacket Defective by Design have come up with for 2019's International Day against DRM. Mark also mentions that he's using w3schools css templates to help his daughter build a website on global climate change. He also introduced her to wikitolearn. As the topic has veered towards educational materials, Wayne mentions Cisco Network Academy's free online courses of Introduction to Cybersecurity, Introduction to IoT, Entrepreneurship and Linux Essentials.

31:08 Wayne tells us tales from the other side and says that it is no longer possible to log into Windows 10 Home without an online account, as chronicled in this howtogeek article, which also chronicles ways around it. After this bombshell, Wayne tells us that he's not spending as much time doing IT work because since he is now using Nextcloud, vim, ssh and Remmina. He has a lot of his projects completed, though now he has to maintain it! He's taking a bit of time out to decide how he's going to manage all his IT bits, going forward.

41:29 Wayne tells us about events soon to happen, being Oggcamp and Sono. He also tells us he met up with Al from the AdminAdim podcast.

44:31 Under the Hood - Wayne's Under the Hood is about Linux Networking Tools, and it comes from the Binary Tides! Wayne follows this with a link to 15 tips for nmap usage

Mark's under the hood is an app called ClassyShark3xodus, which checks apps for code signatures of known trackers (provided by Exodus). It is based on Classy Shark from google. The guys round out the whole thing with a quick chat around the latest humble bundles and collapse os.

55:49 Irish saying of the show - "Is maith liom cupan tae" or I like my cuppa tea!

We hope you enjoy it as much as we did making it!


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The Binary Times - Series 6 Episode 7

Sat 28 Sep, 2019

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The Binary Times show, a little earlier than usual


00:28 Wayne welcomes us to Series 6 Episode 7, helped along by some sound effects from Mark. While it's lovely and calm at the moment in Bristol, it looks like the weather is taking a change, with both Bristol and Kilkishen becoming rainier and windier.

03:43 The conversation moves on to Mark's welfare. Mark implores everyone to look after their back and do what they can to have a strong back. This leads to a conversation around exercise and what motivates us.

12:31 The guys turn the conversation back to their favourite subject, Linux. Mark tells us that he's installed the daily image of Kubuntu after hearing for a call for testing of KDE Plasma 5.17

Wayne tells us of some support he provided a customer to install Spotify on Ubuntu MATE. He remoted in and typed sudo snap install spotify. Mark suggests the boutique as a great way to get a select amount of software on that system. Wayne goes on to talk about suggestions he made to another customer regarding photo and video editing and they were darktable and kdenlive. Mark mentions OpenShot as an alternative video editor that has received some recommendation. Wayne is going to give OpenShot a look. It comes in an handy AppImage. In response to a question from Wayne regarding Darktable, Mark erroneously talks about OpenShot rather than Shotwell, while Wayne goes on to talk about the benefits of darktable. The conversation digresses into outdoor activities and it turns out the guys like to get their fresh air from equipment fans.

32:44 The conversation turns around to /e/. Mark has bought an /e/ phone and tells us how he's getting on with it. Wayne gives us some of the details about why /e/ is such a good option and the guys discuss the sustainability and privacy focus of the project. Mark brings into the topic the latest episode of IRL. The discussion moves onto privacy and Mark mentions UBDI, an organisation mentioned in that IRL episode.

44:42 Wayne tells us that on the recommendation of the /e/ community, he has bought a Xiaomi Redmi Note 4

48:46 Wayne tells us how great Ubuntu MATE is! It's a great FLOSS distribution that he can do everything he wants with and it doesn't get in the way.

50:48 The guys discuss the Turris Mox, and Mark admits that he's not done an awful lot with it lately.

54:31 The guys discuss the latest humble bundles, including the RPG bundle, Network and Security Certification by Wiley Bundle and the Level up your Python Bundle.

58:00 Under the Hood ! Mark's Under the Hood is systemctl reboot to reboot your machine.

Wayne's Under the Hood is thanks to Ben yet again, and it is mankier, a site that tries to make reading man pages as convenient as possible. It's mankier than man!

1:01:40 Irish saying "Murayea" or "as if", as in "Facebook respects your privacy Murayea!"

We hope you enjoy this show as much as we did making it!


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The Binary Times - Series 6 Episode 6

Sun 15 Sep, 2019

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Mark is back in the latest episode of the Binary Times audiocast.


01:29 Mark welcomes us to Series 6 Episode 6 of the Binary Times and dedicates the show to Jimmy Beacons. The weather looks like it's going to be nice in both Kilkishen and Bristol. Wayne thinks they're getting good enough to be weather reporters, Mark is not so sure.

02:58 The guys announce that they are now part of the Other Side Podcast Network. They've joined other such august free and creative commons shows such as CCJam, Crivins, the Duffercast, Tea, Earl Grey, Hot!, The Bugcast, TuxJam and Twine Radio.

05:41 Wayne tells us what he's been up to. Wayne's a fan of KVM for running Virtual Machines. He used to use Virtual Box and found some of the setting up involved easier with that. He's been having problems with bridging between KVM and Ubuntu MATE. If anyone listening has any ideas as to how to fix these problems he'd be more than happy to hear from them. Wayne feels limited knowledge about things like the Linux networking stack and the Linux Audio subsystem are holding him back. Mark agrees and says that is why he relies on specialist distributions like AVLinux to have Pulse Audio and JACK set up properly. This leads to a discussion around to distro hop or not. Wayne also tells us that he's starting up an IT support business and trying to help a customer choose the right laptop is proving tricky.

16:07 Mark tells us about his adventures in distro hopping. Mark has an old Core 2 Duo that he's been trying a bunch of different distros on, namely Clear Linux, Devuan, Haiku, Lubuntu 19.04, KDE neon and OpnSUSE Tumbleweed.

Clear Linux wouldn't install, as it complained that the hardware wasn't 64 bit. Users in the Dublin Linux Telegram group suggested that it could be due to using an EFI ISO, Mark didn't investigate that further though. He also mentions that the Dublin Linux Community are holding a Clear Linux event in November.

Mark thinks Devuan is quite cool. He also found out that Devuan is part of the Dyne foundation.

Haiku is an open-source operating system that specifically targets personal computing. Inspired by the BeOS, Haiku is fast, simple to use, easy to learn and yet very powerful.

Lubuntu 19.04 uses LXQt as its default desktop environment. Mark noted it only used 270MB RAM at startup. While very usable, it was a bit too basic for his wants.

Mark notes that KDE Neon only uses 370MB RAM at startup and questions the widely held belief that KDE Plasma is a heavy desktop environment.

OpenSuse Tumbleweed with the KDE Plasma desktop only uses 400MB of RAM at startup and that is the distribution that is currently on the machine.

The guys follow this up with a discussion on the real utility of old hardware in today’s web intensive, resource hungry computing, and then discuss laptops with discrete graphics cards.

34:35 Wayne wants to talk about signatures in Thunderbird. He wants to set up a signature for his new business and found the best way to do that was to create a new email, set up the signature as he wanted it, save it as an html file, then check a box to attach that file for the signature. It surprised him that it was done that way. He used a lifewire article to help him in completing this task.

37:49 Mark tells us about the latest humble bundles to catch his eye, including the humble RPG bundle, the IT Security by Taylor and Francis bundle, Become a Game Developer bundle and Level up your Python bundle.

41:12 Wayne moves the topic onto apt vs apt-get. Wayne lists out various apt commands and their apt-get / apt-cache equivalents.

apt dist-upgrade is an alias for apt full-upgrade

46:35 Mark talks about zypper, the equivalent of apt in SUSE land, and talks about a cheat sheet that's available to help you use zypper. The conversation moves onto OpenSUSE itself and YaST. Mark recommends reading the documentation before using OpenSUSE.

51:31 Under the Hood - Wayne's under the hood is how HTTPS works. Thanks Ben! He also talks about Stacer, an open source system utility.

Mark mentions the videos available on xiph providing insight on digital media as a worthwhile watch. Thanks once again Ben!

54:51 Irish saying of the show: "An líonra taobh eile" or the other side network.

Thanks for listening, we hope you enjoy the show as much as we did making it and of course all feedback welcome!


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The Binary Times - Series 6 Episode 5

Sat 31 Aug, 2019

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Ben Klaasen joins Wayne on this episode of the Binary Times Podcast


This fortnight we are joined by Ben Klaasen, a software tester, linux advocate and long time supporter and listener to the show.

We begin chating about using Linux in the workplace. Not every machine runs Linux perfectly, be warned. We seem to do the research without even noticing it to ensure Linux compatibility.

Ben purchased a standard usb Silvercrest video encoder from Lidl/Aldi, and it worked a treat. Here's the ffmpeg command used to convert video using this device:

ffmpeg -async 1 -vsync 1 -f v4l2 -video_size 720x576 -i /dev/video2 -thread_queue_size 1024 -channel_layout stereo -f alsa -i default -c:v libx264 -pix_fmt yuv420p -b:v 2M -crf 23 -c:a aac -b:a 128K -to 00:35:00 -preset fast -report "Free Text Output File Name.mkv"

Ben has started a new job with an emphasis on making working the workplace more humane. He then takes us through his Nextcloud history and setup and it was quite a journey.

Wayne chats about his upgrade to pfsense. He has been watching Lawerence Systems networking videos on Youtube. This video shows you how to set up pfblockerng. Using aliases in pfsense is also very helpful in making firewall rules.

Ben asks about Proxmox VE, Wayne has tried it but didnt really get on well with it. He prefers using KVM and Virsh for this purpose.

Wayne has been looking at the Xiaomi Redmi 4 and the Xiaomi Redmi Note 4 as possible dual sim contenders to run /e/. Ben chats about the fairphone 3 which has been released on the 27th August. Fairphone OS includes all google services, Fairphone Open doesn't: We then move on to chatting about trying to make ethical considered purchases.

Ben chats about the latest release of Thunderbird 68.

Under the hood - Wayne starts off chatting about some great Humble Bundle releases, IT Security", Keep Books Weird", and Python Programming books.

We also chat about the find command and Wayne introduces the -icase flag to make the search case insensitive

find / -iname kodi.log

Ben goes now to say how he uses command substitution with find to move around the file system...
find ../../../ -name \*justenough\*
That gives me the full path to the file, relative to where I am now...
dirname $(!!) gives me the directory name only...
cd $(!!) brings me to that directory.< br /> !! means "run the last command again.
$(!!) is the output of the last command.

Ben talks about NuShell and python-mario. These give nice new ways of interpreting data.

Irish saying of the audiocast is 'Beimid ar ais' which means 'We'll be back'.

We hope you enjoy listening to us as we enjoyed making it!


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The Binary Times - Series 6 Episode 4

Sun 17 Aug, 2019

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Its Mike Saunders back on the Binary Times Podcast

00:24 Wayne introduces us to Season 6 Episode 4 of the Binary Times. He's in a better mood as Bristol is cooler and cloudier, Mark's feeling great in a lightly raining, cloudy Kilkishen, and The Mike Saunders joins us once again from a sunny, beer garden time, Southern Bavaria.

03:24 The guys discuss the latest version of LibreOffice, that being LibreOffice 6.3. The latest version can be installed as a snap using the command sudo snap install libreoffice in Linux distributions with snap support. There is a video available on YouTube detailing the really cool enhancements that have arrived with LibreOffice 6.3.

31:32 The guys transition nicely into a discussion around the demise of the Linux Journal and print media in general. The good news is Linux Format and Linux Magazine are still available! Mike thinks someone may try to crowdfund another Linux Magazine and he'd be willing to provide any advice needed. Maker magazines seem to be doing well, all the same. Mike reminisces fondly about an interview with Lennart Poettering and the guys discuss the road rage level of anger that can be directed at people and organizations by the community.

53:14 Under the Hood

- Mark's under the hood is inxi -W [location]. More can be found out about the very versatile inxi on its man page.

- Wayne's under the hood is not really an under the hood but more what he's been doing, and that's installing /e/ on the Samsung Galaxy S4 mini. The experience is far sweeter than his previous attempt with a Samsung Galaxy S3 and Mike thinks it might be due to more memory in the Galaxy S4.

Wayne goes on to clarify a mistake that was made in our last episode and that is the Blender Game Engine has been removed from Blender.

Wayne wraps up to say that metronomes are distracting when learning to play an instrument, bring on the drum beat with drumkits! He mentions two in particular, Drum bit and Virtual Drum Machine

Mike's under the hood is the observation that no application is complete without a weather function.

53:56 German saying for the show: "Eine App ist nicht vollständig, bis sie einen Wetterbericht erstellen kann" - Or An app isn't complete until it can produce a weather report!

We hope you enjoy the show as much as we did making it!


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The Binary Times - Series 6 Episode 3

Sun 4 Aug, 2019

Timeline companion

Its incredible were all still talking, here comes another episode of The Binary Times audiocast.

00:24 Wayne's barely able to welcome us to Episode 3 of Season 6 after an hour of faffing about in the searing heat of Bristol. Mark tries to say the right things and tell us it's raining in Kilkishen.

03:00 Mark tells us all about Dublin Maker Fair. He tells us he met some of the people from Dublin Linux Group and chatted with Conor from Linux Lads. There were physics experiments galore and a home made 3D printer to be seen. The Board Game Designers of Ireland were there too, and Mark received a game from one of the developers there. The game is great! Mark mentions that representatives of Techspace, CoderDojo and Raspberry Pi were there. Crafty Nathan Creations, a financial wizard by day, creator of cool costumes in his spare time, was showing off his Fallout and Metro creations. Mark goes on to tell us that students were on site who were building Ireland's first satellite, EIRSAT-1. Tog, the maker / hacker space in Dublin, was there also, providing good information on de-googling your life, with more information on that being found at,, and a beginner friendly workshop on digital self defence near you can be found at Mark felt right at home with everything going on and really enjoyed the day. He'd recommend it.

Mark goes on to tell us that he provided a Gigabyte Brix for his parents' home and installed Linux Mint 19.2 on it. This leads the lads on to talk about Timeshift, a system backup utility used in Linux Mint. Mark tells us that there's quite a good article on Linux Magazine about Timeshift also. Wayne asks about Déjà Dup and the guys breifly discuss the merits of various back up strategies.

Mark goes on to discuss some adventures he has had with pihole, and how he couldn't get pihole -r to work as he thought it should work. Wayne goes on to tell us some pi-hole issues he helped Paul with, DNS and DHCP issues. Wayne thanks Paul for the memory he sent on.

Mark rounds out his what has he been doing for the last fortnight section with a little chat about Blender and its latest release 2.80. Mark tells us about some of the uses Blender has been put to, including Yo Frankie!, a game show-casing the Blender Game Engine, Big Buck Bunny, an animated movie in which Frankie appears, Elephant's Dream, the first movie created with Blender, Sintel, a brilliant bit of animation and great story to boot, as well as Tears of Steel and Agent 327. Mark goes on to tell us the huge news that Ubisoft is joining the Blender Development Fund. Mark tells us about his own recent experience with Blender 2.80, tells us of its differences, and that Blender is an API breaking releases. Mark recommends using the snap or steam version to stay current.

33:34 Wayne tells us what he's been at, and he begins by announcing that he's ditched Ubuntu Touch and is back on Lineage OS with f-droid. Wayne feels that the cleanliness of Lineage and not having to think about his phone and it just being his daily driver makes his life easier. Mark asks Wayne about /e/. Wayne gives us his reasons as to why he's sticking with Lineage.

This brings the conversation around to old hardware and 32 bit computers. 32 bit Distributions mentioned are Slackware, antiX Linux, MX linux and Debian. Wayne questions the usability of Debian day to day. Mark suggests Linux Mint Debian Edition.

50:29 Wayne tells us that he's completely replaced his old routing setup with a pfsense box. He tells us he's using pfBlockerNG to block unwanted sites. He's quite happy with his new set up.

Mark tells us that his Turros Mox has finally arrived and his internet connection is soon to be upgraded. Mark is starting to suspect his phones are having an effect on his network performance.

1:00:05 Under the Hood - Wayne talks about Frank Karlitschek's self hosting talk and in particular the file link add on for thunderbird. It is an extension which makes it easy to send large attachments with Thunderbird.

Wayne also mentions Dave's suggestion of vrms to check your system for non-free software.

Mark's under the hood is the command apt-cache show [application]. This command gives you all the details of the application in question in the repository, including dependancies.

1:05:00 Irish saying of the audiocast is "Táim i dtrioblóid", or I'm in trouble, a reflection of the difficulties the guys had in getting this show together.

We hope you enjoy this audiocast as much as we did making it, please do get in touch and let us know what you think, we do love to get your feedback. Mark recommends checking out the new logos on Patreon.


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The Binary Times - Series 6 Episode 2

Sun 21 Jul, 2019

Timeline companion

Mark is a bit stressed and off to the Dublin Maker Fair

00:24 Wayne welcomes us to Episode 2 of Season 6 from a cloudy but sunny Bristol. A slightly stressed Mark tells us it's only kind of raining in Kilkishen and looks to stay that way til Monday. Dublin looks to be not as rainy and he's hoping it will stay that way since he and his family are heading to the Dublin Maker Fair. Mark goes on to tell us that Irish Rail's family tickets are very reasonable and incredible value for families. The guys discuss Mark's exploding head of ideas and blissful holidays.

04:51 Mark tells us that he's upgraded his openSuse 15.0 Leap instance to 15.1 using a guide he found. He tells us he's considering changing to openSuse Leap on his main desktop, much to Wayne's consternation.

Mark goes on to tell us about a couple of things happening now or soon, the first being the Decentralized Web Camp happening near San Francisco at the moment, brought to us by our friends at the Internet Archive. Mark says he will put a link in the show notes to some of the videos that are available from previous Decentralized web summits.

Mark also wants to mention that Sysadmin Day 2019 is happening next Friday, 26th July.

12:01 Mark asks Wayne what he's been at. Wayne tells us it's all a bit foggy. Snipe-IT being used full time at work, the users like it and the software is meeting their needs. In fact it's way more useful than what they were using before. Wayne goes through some networking hoops he had to go through with it. He has some usability feature requests he might ask of the Snipe-it people on their forum. Wayne's quite pleased with his back up stratgy which includes OneDrive and Rclone. The guys discuss the benefits of using Open Source Software.

18:24 Wayne tells us some more about his journey with Ubuntu Touch and relates some of the privacy features of the OS. In Ubuntu Touch you can open as many apps as you like at the same time but ‘open’ does not mean the same as it does with other operating systems. With Ubuntu Touch’s competitors, apps which are running in the background typically are able to monitor – some would call it spy on – the activity in the app which you are using. In Ubuntu Touch, apps running in the background (with a few exceptions) use no resources and there is a system in place to confine apps so that they are unable to see what other apps are doing. This is usually called ‘sandboxing’ and it is basic to the way that Ubuntu Touch works. It is not an afterthought but safeguard of privacy. The guys discuss openness, transparency, wishes for more development and core devs in Ubuntu Touch, especially around NextCloud. Mark suggests supporting them via Patreon and also suggests watching Frank Karlitschek's talk from this year's openSuse Conference. Wayne talks about Pico CMS.

31:25 Not under the Hood! Wayne tells us about ffmpeg. Wayne provides some examples, as follows:

ffmpeg -ss 00:00:30.0 -i input.wmv -c copy -t 00:00:10.0 output.wmv


-ss : the start time hour\mins\sec

-i : the input file name, ie the master video file

-c : make a copy

-t : the duration of the video to be cut

You can use -to instead of -t to specify the timestamp to which you want to cut. So, instead of ffmpeg -i [input] -ss 30 -t 10 you could also do ffmpeg -i [input] -ss 30 -to 40 to achieve the same thing.

Joining video files (need to be converted into a suitable format for concatenation first) can be done as follows:

ffmpeg -i input1.avi -qscale:v 1 intermediate1.mpg

ffmpeg -i input2.avi -qscale:v 1 intermediate2.mpg

cat intermediate1.mpg intermediate2.mpg > intermediate_all.mpg

ffmpeg -i intermediate_all.mpg -qscale:v 2 output.avi

Wayne tells us that Winff is a gui frontend for ffmpeg, and is as easy to install as typing sudo apt install winff from the command line in Ubuntu. The guys talk a bit about Kdenlive as well.

39:34 Wayne talks about Windows licensing and the guys ponder why businesses use Windows

42:25 Under the Hood - Jon the Nice Guy Spriggs has suggested Language Tool as an open source alternative to Grammarly. Ben suggested Barrier, a Synergy clone, which are applications to share your mouse and keyboard with other computers.

Wayne suggests using dpkg -l from the terminal to list the packages you have installed on your system, assuming you're using a Debian based distribution.

Feeling the need to double up on Under the Hood, Wayne talks about fslint

49:01 Irish saying of the podcast - Oscail an fhuinneog, or Open the Window

We hope you enjoy this as much as we did making it!


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The Binary Times - Series 6 Episode 1

Sun 7 Jul, 2019

Timeline companion

Mark and Wayne, kicking off Series 6

00:24 Wayne introduces us to the first audiocast episode of Series 6! It's too hot in Bristol and it's misty and overcast in Kilkishen.

04:00 Mark announces The Open Source Community on Steam's Open Source Community You Tube Channel and their announcement video. They plan to feature the Open Source Community's Edition of the Binary Times Audiocast, so there's even more ways now to consume our content!

05:50 Mark tells us what he's been up to for the last two weeks, and it's not been contemplating the meaning of life. He tells us that instead he's been contemplating the meaning of markdown, with the help of Mastering Markdown, [3 Reasons Why Everyone Needs to Learn Markdown][05], the Markdown project homepageand one of Github's many guides, This leads to a discussion around the benefits of markdown.

11:01 Mark tells us he's been listening to the Mintcast podcast lately due to a listener's recommendation, and he's been enjoying the good content.

13:51 Mark goes on to tell us that he's started back into duolingo.

15:02 Mark tells us about

19:49 Mark goes on to tell us that his daughter is now using Ubuntu MATE and loving it, he sings the praises of the welcome screen and congratulates all those involved in making the distro happen!

22:27 Wayne tells us he's been stealing Nextcloud tips from other podcasters. Useful utilities in Next Cloud's App Store are AppOrder, Right click, and Text

23:40 Wayne goes on to speak about Ubuntu Touch. Wayne gives a shout out for Mateo Salta and all the hard work he's putting into updating apps. Wayne mentions Solitaire, UBports NetWalk and Network Scanner. Wayne goes on to tell us that he's been on ubuntu touch now for six weeks and is really enjoying it while moving in the right direction. Mark briefly mentions KOreader as a possible ebook and pdfreader. Wayne goes on to tell us that he's changed from the pdf format to epub.

31:06 Wayne admires the consistency of gestures in the apps of Ubuntu Touch.

32:15 Wayne relates some of the chat going on in the UBports Supergroup on Telegram, and it goes as follows:

Q: Do I still have the stock recovery running underneath UBports? Is there an Android layer running underneath UBports?

A: The recovery is replaced with a custom one. the bootloader is standard android bootloader though; and we run some small parts of Android in a container, as it's required to get the hardware to work

Q: Nice. So it's literally just enough of an Android custom bootloader to kick things off, and after that everything is FOSS? (apart from the binaries needed to interface with the hardware, of course)

Q: I did not understand it. Does ubuntu touch need some remaining android stuff/drivers/anything? Or does the ubports installer remove android completely

A: No, an Android container is run to work with Android services and drivers. It's minimal, but it is Android built from Android source.

Mark steers the conversation towards the Librem 5 and the Pinephone.

37:52 Wayne brings it back around to interface tips on Ubuntu Touch. They both recommend the UT Tweak tool. Wayne also tells us how to take a screenshot, and that is hold down the volume up and volume down keys simultaneously.

42:00 Wayne tells us how he used diff to resolve a situation at work. He goes on to tell us about his Windows 7 and Office 2010 woes at work. His suggestion to move to Linux did not provoke the reaction he expected. Wayne is wondering what remote desktop server is available in Linux. Wayne gives the phrase 'If I replace Outlook, there would be Outcry!' to Microsoft.

55:20 Pondering where time goes, the guys kick off Under the Hood

Mark's Under the Hood is related to Libre Office. In Libre Office, if you point at a button with drop down options in the standard tool bar menu and click and hold the left mouse button, you will see all the options.

Wayne's under the hood tip is related to Reader View in Firefox. To activate this, hold down Ctrl+Alt+R and you will be in reader view.

59:10 Irish saying of the Podcast: Táim an fear or I am the man!

We hope you enjoy the podcast as much as we did making it!


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Series 8 Episodes
Episode 9, Episode 8, Episode 7, Episode 6, Episode 5, Episode 4, Episode 3, Episode 2, Episode 1

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About The Binary Times

The Binary Times show is created by Mark and Wayne, who just like using linux and open source software and want to spread the word.

GNU/Linux is free and open source and it is an excellent choice of operating system for our ever changing times.

This podcast is released fortnightly.

A picture of the Raspberry Pi with breadboard

Electronic fun with the Raspberry Pi

This show aspires to touch on various aspects of GNU/Linux, with chat, musings, information, commands to help you get started or to advance within the GNU/Linux environment.

Special thanks

Many thanks to all recent supporters and contributors to The Binary Times Audiocast.

Thanks to Squid/Alex at the Steam Open Source Community for his support and donation.