Pour en finir avec la congestion nasale: comment effectuer le rinçage nasal correctement

Ce billet pourrait aussi s’intituler “Comment en finir avec les allergies et court-circuiter le rhume, la grippe ou la sinusite”, car selon mon expérience la congestion nasale est un symptôme qui empire tout le reste au point de prolonger la maladie. Quand on élimine la congestion nasale et la sinusite, on récupère beaucoup plus rapidement (ou, du moins, beaucoup moins péniblement). Regardez comme cet homme semble heureux:

neti pot sinus rinsing epic dude

Continue reading “Pour en finir avec la congestion nasale: comment effectuer le rinçage nasal correctement”

“SmartEco” or “Extreme Eco” projector lamp power saving modes are a trap

Here are some findings I’ve been meaning to post for a while.

A bit over a year ago, I fulfilled a decade-long dream of owning a good projector for movies, instead of some silly monitor with a diagonal measured in “inches”. My lifestyle very rarely allows me to watch movies (or series*), so when I decide to watch something, it needs to have a rating over 90% on RottenTomatoes, it has to be watched with a bunch of friends, and it needs to be a top-notch audio-visual experience. I already had a surround sound system for over a decade, so the projector was the only missing part of the puzzle.

After about six months of research and agonizing over projector choices, I narrowed it down to the infamous BenQ W1070, which uses conventional projection lamps (Aaxa’s LED projectors were not competitively priced at that time, costing more for a lower resolution and less connectivity):

Continue reading ““SmartEco” or “Extreme Eco” projector lamp power saving modes are a trap”

Inking an old friend

When I was young, I read a lot of comic books. One of my favorite séries was Cubitus:cubitus, chien sans accroc

Over fifteen years ago, Michel Grant, a local comic book artist passionate about teaching, made a quick sketch of Cubitus & Sénéchal for me, on a big sheet of paper. I liked it enough to have it laminated and kept in my room for nearly two decades. I don’t think Mr. Grant would have expected me to keep it so long and so preciously. It was drawn with a big, unrefined permanent marker (certainly not a Sakura micron or something of the sort), and here came the problem: after so many years, even if it was laminated and not put in direct sunlight, the ink had faded out significantly:

Continue reading “Inking an old friend”

An update from the Pitivi 2014 summer battlefront

Hello gentle readers! You may have been wondering what has been going on since the 0.93 release and the Pitivi fundraising campaign. There are a few reasons why we’ve been quiet on the blogging side this summer:

  • Mathieu and Thibault have been working hard to bring us towards “1.0 quality”, improving and stabilizing various parts of GStreamer to make the backend of Pitivi more reliable (more details on this further below). They preferred to write code rather than spending their time doing marketing/fundraising. This is understandable, it is a better use of our scarce specialized resources.
  • Personally, I have been juggling with many obligations (my daily business, preparing for the conferences season, serving on the board of the GNOME Foundation, and Life in General), which left me with pretty much no time or energy to do development on marketing-related activities on Pitivi, just enough to participate in some discussions and help with administration/co-mentorship a bit. I did not have time to research blogging material about what others were doing, hence the lack of status updates in recent times.

Continue reading “An update from the Pitivi 2014 summer battlefront”

Se libérer de Bell et Vidéotron: passez Go et réclamez 1000$ par année

Ceci est un guide, basé sur mon expérience, pour vous libérer de l’hégémonie de fournisseurs tels que Bell et Vidéotron tout en augmentant votre connaissance de la technologie. Notons que ce guide est hautement contextuel à la quasi absence de compétition que l’on retrouve au Québec. Les Français, eux, ont Free (entre autres).

D’entrée de jeu, je me fiche de tout ce que les vendeurs de Bell et Vidéotron pourront vous dégotter comme offres promotionelles pour vous séduire: Continue reading “Se libérer de Bell et Vidéotron: passez Go et réclamez 1000$ par année”

Le chiffrement des partitions Linux d’un ordinateur de bureau est-il utile?

Pendant des années, j’ai eu un item sur ma liste de choses à faire: chiffrer (encrypter) le disque dur de données de mon ordinateur de bureau personnel. Parce que… que se passerait-il si je me faisais cambrioler?

computer thief
Ouais. C’est totalement comme ça que ça se passe en réalité.

Continue reading “Le chiffrement des partitions Linux d’un ordinateur de bureau est-il utile?”

Escape from Stockholm — getting to Arlanda with night bus 592 or 593

Rule number one: trust Google Maps. Rule number two: do not believe the locals’ knowledge of their own transportation system.

Stockholm is this big city that prides itself on having a great public transportation system. It sounds great. Until you find out at 1AM that everything shuts down at night. So here you are, in central station, with SL employees telling you “It’s closed, sorry. Get to the airport tomorrow”. That obviously won’t work with a flight that leaves at 6.

Continue reading “Escape from Stockholm — getting to Arlanda with night bus 592 or 593”

Pitivi 0.92 and the wandering opensourcerer

The past few weeks have been pretty crazy.

At the last minute, I ended up going to the GStreamer Conference in Edinburgh, thanks to the GStreamer project sponsoring my attendance. As always, it was a fantastic event and it was great to meet up with old friends and see great topics being discussed. I was pretty impressed by the amount of attendees too. I’m feeling guilty for having missed good talks while being dragged into hallway discussions or being hammered by jetlag, but our pals at Ubicast recorded everything so I should be able to catch up later. My good friend Luis summarized the event much better than I could, so I won’t go into detail here. Except that Thibault won a bottle of whiskey and was unable to claim it, so I picked it up and brought it back for him (I don’t hack on GStreamer itself, so I don’t need the whiskey):

2013-10-25

Continue reading “Pitivi 0.92 and the wandering opensourcerer”

Privacy does not exist — it never did

Warning: this is certainly a depressing post.

The NSA/PRISM/big brother scandal of late didn’t surprise nor shock me. The discovery that “the NSA probably silently circumvents/broke all our crypto and hid backdoors everywhere” is not really a discovery to geeks who have given the whole system a bit of thought — spies are spying on us, and they’re not telling us that our GPG keys or disk encryption are not sufficient to guard against them? No sh**, Sherlock!

What kept me relatively optimistic about the whole thing is that running a fully open-source software stack on your computer gives you long-term protection, in theory. Sure, it probably has backdoors planted by the NSA right now (you may now begin the witch hunt), but the increased awareness and outrage from recent events means (hopefully) that we’ll weed out those vulnerabilities with more audits, ruthless efficiency and an almost fanatical devotion to security.

Continue reading “Privacy does not exist — it never did”

Surprises dans les conduits d’aération, prise deux

Il y a deux mois, alors que l’hiver tirait à sa fin, j’ai décidé de réinvestiguer le problème d’odeur émanant sporadiquement d’un des conduits d’aération de la maison. Mes fans invétérés se souviendront peut-être de ma croisade avec l’aspirateur dans les conduits il y a deux ans et demi, où j’avais découvert plein de trucs louches.

Dans mon esprit, c’était supposé être réglé, en théorie. Cependant, bien que moins forte, l’odeur persistait (au delà de la période de «laissons aller, il faut probablement du temps pour que ça se dissipe») et me valait des accusations de manque d’hygiène personnelle, ce qui n’est pas amusant quand on sait qu’elle apparaît dès que le chauffage se met en marche, qu’on clame son innocence et que lorsqu’on amène les villageois pour constater la chose, eh bien il est trop tard, le loup a déguerpi. Jusqu’à ce que je réussisse à le prendre de vitesse au printemps pour démontrer que oui, il y a bien une odeur qui sort encore de cette maudite trappe.

Continue reading “Surprises dans les conduits d’aération, prise deux”

DIY sound suppressor for the Unicomp / model M keyboard

When you spend the vast majority of your spare time working on open-source software like Pitivi, sometimes you feel like hacking on hardware made of dead trees for a change. Dead trees have very few bugs unless you let them sit on the ground for extended amounts of time.

As I was quite unsatisfied with all the various keyboards I’ve had over the years (including the RSI-inducing Apple keyboards and the Lenovo external Thinkpad keyboard which, unfortunately, has a terrible build quality and not the same feeling as the real Thinkpad keyboard), I recently obtained a Unicomp buckling spring keyboard — the true successor of the legendary IBM Model M.

Continue reading “DIY sound suppressor for the Unicomp / model M keyboard”

La carte Opus et les points de service qui n’en sont pas vraiment

Il se trouve que les cartes Opus expirent (simplement parce qu’ils ont décidé que ça serait cool que ça expire, même si c’est une carte anonyme à tarif régulier). Chez moi, la pharmacie du coin a toujours offert le service de recharge de titres de transports, et c’est donc avec un grosse absence d’excitation que j’ai reçu la nouvelle du CIT Richelain comme quoi «le CIT a maintenant un point de service sur son territoire! C’est la pharmacie Jean Coutu où vous faisiez déjà vos transactions depuis dix ans!».

poker face

Continue reading “La carte Opus et les points de service qui n’en sont pas vraiment”