LWDW 219: Snaps Before Apts

Ubuntu 20.04 prepares to launch! Jitsi learns how to Firefox, QR file transfer from the terminal, and CUDA powered avatars for Zoom and Skype.



Ubuntu 20.04 LTS
Appimage Builder
Compton alternative
Jitsi Firefox updates
QR command line file transfer
Shameless self promotion
Turing Pi cluster

Joplin notes (Strider)

  • Joplin is a free, open source note taking and to-do application, which helps you write and organise your notes, and synchronise them between your devices.
  • I downloaded the AppImage for desktop which works great, but it is also available for mobile and terminal.
  • Joplin launches right into welcome notes with instructions on using it.
  • And since the notes are in Markdown format there is great flexibility, especially for coders and developers.
  • You can import and export from many other note taking apps, including Evernote.
  • And a great feature of Joplin, is being able to launch notes in your favorite text editor, such as gedit, with the “Edit in external editor” command.
  • Thanks to Strider of Lutris for this great recommendation.
  • Breaking note sync away from the centralized Google, Microsoft, Apple, Evernote, etc., ecosystem is a lofty goal.
  • Invoking XKCD 927 here, I’m not sure if creating yet another service which needs to rely on a third party service, or even the user to set up their own, is the way to do it but kudos.


Snaps before apts

  • Keep pushing those snaps like that. 
  • It worked a treat for G+. 
  • Like we talked about two weeks ago with the beta release of Ubuntu 20.04, Gnome 3.36 is faster and more polished, and there is a new dark mode setting with three variants of the default Yaru theme: Light, Dark and Standard.
  • And the themes are part of the settings application now, and you don’t have to install GNOME Tweaks to change theme.
  • I really wish GNOME would follow suit with all the GNOME Tweaks configurations and just include them in the UI by default.
  • Ubuntu 20.04 also includes the ‘GameMode’ performance tool from Feral Interactive.
  • And no more 32-bit systems support for Ubuntu 20.04.
  • So,  sudo apt autoremove –purge snapd  is a must going forward, hm? 


Appimage Builder

  • It is so wonderful to see my favorite application containerized format getting updates and the ability to launch apps even faster.
  • In the market for a recipe based AppImage creation tool?
  • V0.5.0 brings a 1.0 feature freeze.
  • Using apt or DNF to create a static package directly from the repos is all well and good.
  • What about the ability to resolve dependencies from a bit of software not in the repos?
  • I’m thinking old versions of software or old games which will need specific libraries, is there something that does this?


Picom (RTheren)

  • Dual kawase blur method and rounded corners! 
  • New code for rounded corners on the glx backend using GLSL frangment shader.
  • This is forked from the original Compton because it seems to have become unmaintained.
  • Dude plans on refactoring the compton so it has that going for it. 
  • That third reddit post. 
  • Unmaintained because abandoned or unmaintained because working?
  • Still the first thing I install after X. 


Jitsi Fox

  • Awesome!  I was so happy to see this tweet.
  • Let’s prove that Firefox can WebRTC as good as Chrome.
  • As long as it has the annoy-o-box which shall not be disabled, it won’t.
  • Now with RTC goodness. 


QR in a ternimal 

  • What an ingenious way to use the terminal to send files over wifi to mobile, with an embedded QR code.
  • You can weefee a whole folder from a QR code… That’s pretty neat!



  • Now Zoom has another problem, Avatar bombing! ;-D
  • It uses V4L2 to trick the software into believing you’re running a webcam, so you could use this for literally everything.
  • To run Avatarify smoothly you need a CUDA-enabled (NVIDIA) video card.
  • A 1080Ti can manage around 33 fps. 

Slice of Pi

Turing Pi Cluster Board

  • Have your very own mini Beowulf cluster running 7 Raspberry Pi Compute Modules, cost only $189 and will fit in a standard mini ITX case!
  • The Turing Pi Cluster Board is almost ready for production.
  • Seven Raspberry Pi systems to be combined into a desktop Kubernetes cluster that’s smaller than a sheet of A4 paper.
  • I’m sure it could have some other use than running a kubernetes cluster.
  • The interesting bit is the MiniITX form factor.


Borg Pi

  • Slap the latest WindowMaker 0.95.9 on there for a mini NeXTcube experience ;-D
  • You read that right, active cooling. 
  • Stumpy little cube could be interesting, depending on the price and whether or not it supports vesa mounts.





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