2018 – the Year that Microsoft shocked me

The past year of 2018 has been a very interesting one for me from a personal OS choice.   I’ve been a huge fan of Linux since the early 90’s and have watched it grow and improve year to year.  It’s gone from being a simple toy on which I was able to hone my unix skills and use in the marketplace to being the preferred deployment platform for server side services.    

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Interesting times for a Linux Fan

2018 is proving to be a very interesting for this Linux fan.  Linux support on MS windows 10 is improving.   Chrome OS supports Linux now along with android applications.   Heck, Linux is even coming to Apples IOS via the iSH application!

Did hell freeze over in this colder than normal fall and i missed it??

Anyways looking forward to what 2019 brings on the Linux front.   Will it continue to make inroads in the most unexpected of places?



Tooling up: OS X

Late this past winter, I decided to resurrect my mac Mini by replacing its dog of a hard drive with  a SSD and upgrading to the latest version of OS X.  Apple does a great job in supporting the migration to a new Macintosh which reduced the pain of this process considerably.  Through a combination of commercially supported applications,  CrossOver from CodeWeavers, and open source tools I found a very workable environment.

The mini is a great compact computer but it is also way way past due in terms of refresh.  I purchased mine almost 10 years ago and it’s faster than the ones that Apple currently sells.   That is flat out insane and completely unacceptable.  It is probably why the Hackintosh community has grown widely in this time – Apple has been ignoring the OS X devices in favor of the more profitable IOS devices.   Understandable but not acceptable as a user.

The good

Rock solid environment closely tied to the tightly curated hardware choices by Apple.  Being based on Unix, OS X provided the plumbing to support the tools I’m used.   By default, the OS doesn’t include many of them but tools such as homeBrew make installing them trivial.

The not so good

The UI is different enough to drive me nuts!

  • Copy/paste keyboard shortcuts
  • Window resizing
  • Global Menu bar at the top of the screen instead of having menus in the apps

The hardware is focusing more on lighter/smaller instead of power.  This makes sense for targeting the mass market but as a developer it doesn’t work well for me.  The lack of touch screen support is appalling given how modern UIs have evolved.


Serious security blunders in recent OS versions are very concerning about the development and testing procedures and overall focus at Apple.


The Summary

Given the age of the hardware and my concerns about investing more in this platform given Apples lack of apparent OS X focus, I decided to move onto other options.  Stay tuned as these will be covered in subsequent posts.




The Education Market

Some random ramblings from the grumpy old dude

Recently Apple announced new iPad that is targeted at the educational market but the device will be available to everyone.   The day before, Google and ASUS announced a ChromeOS based tablet.

Apparently the education market is heating up for devices targeted at the US K-12 school market.   Google has been doing well in this market with low-cost and easy to manage devices using ChromeOS

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Desktop Platforms – Dang it

No perfect solution – I was living with windows 10 as my main desktop and decided to improve performance by migrating to a SSD. It seems about 3 weeks later it decided to chew itself and the windows self repair zapped the partition on the drive – very very bad.

I love linux and wine is improving all the time but it’s still a bit of a kludge to run some of the apps that I really want and need to. One example of improvement – I use Evernote and it didn’t use to install or run. Now it does!!!! Way to go crossover!

So… I’m back to Macintosh OSX as my main desktop using a Mac Mini from 2012 which has a quad core i7.

It works and it doesn’t generate a ton of heat which will be nice in the hot summer to come.

So for the time being – I’m back in the land of the fruit



With the transition, at least on the calendar if not weatherwise, to fall from summer, my body is craving some different foods.   Tonight I decided to make something I’ve never made before, cretons.   This is a traditional pork spread from rural Quebec.  Why have I never made it?  Well, until I moved down into the Ozarks I could always find some in New England and of course Quebec.

Since this was my first time making it, I refered to a simple recipe I found online.  The recipe is fairly easy but me being an awesome cook managed to scorch the meat a bit.   My local  butcher at Hudsons Market was nice enough to grind up a small one pound order of pork with extra fat.

Chilled creton on morning toast with a side of yellow mustard – breakfast of champions.

Despite that bit of scorching it tasted pretty awesome and filled a craving :+)