Monday, November 10, 2008

Listening to Cartola in the coolest net radio ever

You probably know it already but I just happened to stumble in
It is really cool!
Social networking and net radio fused!

Check this radio:

Cartola was one of the greatest Samba poets that Brasil ever had.
His song 'O mundo e um moinho' (the world is a mill) is timeless.

And you get to listen to a bunch other great artists that are defined as 'similar' by the rules of the 'social network radio'... Booming!

Sunday, August 5, 2007

Converting videos to watch in mobiles

I tried several video converters to get my movies/videos into Motorola A1000 and Nokia E50 / N95. Here are the video settings that worked on a few of them:

3Gpp converter
is the best converter that i could find. It uses ffmpeg and other open source utilities under the hood. The original website of the producer is in Japan ( and the default languague for the utility is Japonese (that can be easily changed in the main application window to english).

General: 3GPP+AAC General Setting with XviD encoder (this is set up with the 'setup' utility)
Setting: QVGA High Quality 15fps Stereo - produces video 320x240
Setting: QCIF High Quality 15fps Stereo - produces video 176X144 (works on A1000, E50 and N95)


Codec: Xvid
Bitrate: 224kbps
Screen size: 320x208
Sound: 22050hz, 40kbps, mono
Format: AVI

Cristal 2 mobile:
Codec: MP4V
Screen size: 320x208 / 18fps
Sound: MPGA 32000hz, 56kbps, mono
Format: AVI

Multimedia Studio
Codec: H263
Screen size: 176x144 / 12fps
Sound: MP4A 32000hz, 256kbps, stereo
Format: 3gpp or mp4

And while you are at it, have a look at this list of free converters that I just found. I haven't tried most of them thought, I'm pretty happy with 3gppConverter for now. :-)

Saturday, July 28, 2007

The Motorola A1000 smartphone

A few days ago I got an Motorola a1000. It is a smartphone that was first release in 2004.
This handset has a decent 320x208 pixels touch screen capable of 65K colors, one VGA camera and one 1.2 Mpixel camera. It comes with 32Mb ram (about 24 available) has bluetooth and an internal AGPS.
It runs on Symbiam UIQ.

The first thing I did after getting the phone was get some extra memory.
The largest micro SD (Transflash) that works in this handset is 1Gb. I currently use one from Sandisk and it works very well.
It also only works with the normal speed micro SDs. I tried the 2Gb Ultra II from Sandisk with no sucess and read in many forums that the 1Gb Ultra II doesn't work either.

Things I wanna do with the (already a bit ancient) a1000:

  • Browse the internet via Bluetooth (using my computer link)
    • Currently I'm having problems with the bluetooth setup
  • Watch movies
    • Smartmovie is an excellent movie player and converter, but is a bit overpriced.
    • Tried Cristal 2 Mobile which just made UIQ freeze
    • Tried TCPMP but the alpha version available is far from usable
    • Will stick to the original movie player on 3gpp format for now. 3gppconverter is a good converter from avi to 3gpp. The set that works best is 'qcif high stereo'.
  • Use as GPS
    • nhGPS works well but the phone's antenna is too weak
    • Still want to try the smartCom gps which is an navigation system
  • Listen to music
    • Bundled player is ok for now
  • Read pdf
    • The built in reader (picsel viewer) cannot resize pdf to the screen size
  • Read html
    • Picsel viewer does a fairly good job
  • Read word docs
    • Also here Picsel viewer is enough

Saturday, July 7, 2007

Configuring WPA in FC6

This blog has among other tips a easy recipe on getting WPA working with NetworkManager on FC6

Tuesday, June 5, 2007

Recycling the logs in Fedora 6

Recycling of the log files

In Fedora, most daemons save their logs in /var/log/. If they aren't periodically recycled (meaning throw away or archived), they can potentially grown until they fill the disk.

In order to avoid that, if your daemon doesn't already has it, create a file like this in /etc/logrotate.d/, or add it to /etc/logrotate.conf.

All Fedora official RPM packaged daemons already have this.

# recycles the log file for myDaemon and myOtherDaemon
/var/log/myDaemon.log /var/log/myOtherDaemon.log {
size 300k
create 0600 root root

Note that the new file is being created as root. Change that if your daemon runs as another user or it wont be able to write to the file.

Sunday, May 6, 2007

Installing Plone CMS in Fedora Core 6

What is a Content Management System?
Traditionally web sites are maintained by a 'webmaster', he is responsible to getting new material, transforming it into HTML and publishing it to the site. The problem is that this setup is far from the ideal since webmasters, no matter what they had told you, are not gods. They tend to be the bottleneck on the process. CMSs allow for the users to edit the site contents without having to know anything about HTML or web servers. This very blog you are reading now is based in a CMS that allow people to create posts.

Installing Plone in FC6

The Plone package is available from the 'extras' repository for Fedora, run as root:

# yum install plone

This will install plone and it's dependencies (zope, etc).

After the installation you will need to start zope service. Zope is a application server (like Tomcat is, if you know it) that provides a framework for developing web applications. Plone was built on top of it and as such needs Zope to run.

# service zope start

To make it start automatically at boot time run:

# chkconfig zope on

The server will be available at http://localhost:8080/. If you navigate to this page with your browser you will see a page telling you have no administrative account for Zope.

To create an account

# zopectl adduser userName MyPass

After you log in with the new user an password you get the interface show in the right. From the pop up menu under the 'help' link, pick 'Plone Site' and add it.

Give it the name and description you want but be aware that Zope just accept characters from A-Z, for the title and description you can change it latter in Plone.

Your Plone installation is ready to use, if you picked 'plone' as the site title, navigate to http://localhost:8080/plone to access your newly created website.

The user ID and password for Plone are the same used in Zope.

More info:

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

SOA basics

If you haven't been living among the penguins in Antarctica for the last few years, you probably have already heard about Service-­oriented Architecture or SOA.
Nonetheless it is still a bit dificult to find a straightforward definition on what it is... So here it goes!

SOA is a standards based approach for building application modules – called services ­- in a way that facilitates the integration between different applications.

From a technological standpoint there is nothing new in SOA. It's main advantage when comparing to previous approaches (like CORBA) is the fact that it is based in Industry accepted standards and as such doesn't depend on a single vendor implementation and can be widelly adopted.

SOA applications can be composed by services built with different development platforms (such as .NET or JAVA) and available in completely different locations (lets say an application running in London call a service located in a server in Taiwan that at it's turn calls another service in New York).