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Good Leadership Advice

From a former colleague at Rackspace, whom I asked for his top leadership advice:

  • you work with me, not for me
  • consult rather than dictate
  • manage to the outcome
  • understanding how you are communicating is just as important as what you are communicating
  • treat everyone the same

Meta keys with iTerm and Weechat

Found this tip today about how to ensure your iTerm console sends +Esc to weechat for the meta keys to work properly.

To make alt key bindings behave well for Mac OS X iTerm2, go to Preferences->Profiles->Keys and click +Esc radio button for option keys.

I like to use meta+c to clear a buffer and meta+x to close a buffer. meta for me is the Alt key. Here is the keybindings in my .weechat.conf.

Using PushBullet for Notifications in Android/Chrome

So I recently got my weechat (IRC) notifications coming to my android via Pushover. I just borrowed the following infomation from my friend Major's blog post. It was working great, but then Major told me about Pushbullet on Twitter and it's integration with Chrome and everything else that I alredy use. I finally set it up and noticed that the pushover.pl plugin that I was already using in WeeChat works with Pushbullet also. So minimal change to my already existing Weechat setup (just needed to set service = "pushbullet" and pb_apikey attributes on the Pushover.pl plugin and I was good to go. The pushbullet Chrome extension is awesome. Try it out if you're looking for a way to get notifications between your compute and your Android device. I wanted it for when I marked myself as away on IRC I would get notifications on my browser and my phone.

How I set it up:

  • Create your pushbullet account on https://www.pushbullet.com
  • Get your access token from https://www.pushbullet.com/account
  • Inside your weechat setup, install the pushover script:
/script install pushover.pl
  • Configure the plugin
/set plugins.var.perl.pushover.enabled on
/set plugins.var.perl.pushover.only_if_away on
/set plugins.var.perl.pushover.service pushbullet
/set plugins.var.perl.pushover.pb_apikey [ACCESS TOKEN FROM ABOVE]

Next time you /away yourself, you will receive IRC notifications where you're mentioned on your device/browser. You can also sync your mobile notifications with your browswer so that you can see texts, phone calls, etc. Any notification you would normally get on your mobile device you will get in the PushBullet browser app. Yes, you can control which ones notify you via a muting feature.

Enjoy.

Studying for RHCSA/RHCE Exams

I have decided to finally get the RHCSA and RHCE certifications. RHCSA stands for Redhat Certified System Adminitrator and RHCE stands for Redhat Certified Engineer. The reason I decided on these exams is for 2 reasons:

  1. They are not multiple choice. You sit at a kiosk with VNC and are given a live RHEL (Redhat Enterprise Linux) instance and are given issues to fix (aka Real World)
  2. A stepping stone to me finally taking my Linux knowledge/skills seriously.

My current study guide:

RHCSA/RHCE Study guide by Michael Jang

Also my friend, Major Hayden suggested I look at the objectives list for each exame (RHCSA objectives and RHCE objectives) and ensure I study those items.

Please note, I've been using linux for 17 years. I've managed multiple systems to hundreds of VMs. I'll keep you posted on how it goes.

NB: I currently have Ubuntu as my native OS on my laptop, but am feeling out other distributions including Linux Mint and Fedora

Not a fan of Ubuntu Unity, trying out Cinnamon desktop environment

Since I finally switched to Linux as my native OS (Ubuntu 14.04 LTS specifically) I have been having a blast. My only complaint has been Unity. It is not user friendly. It makes my 8GB RAM laptop go slow. I even researched disabling it. Seems that is quite the feat in Ubuntu these days. I'm a minimalist when it comes to my computers. I remember Gnome and have always been a fan. However, due to an article I read the other day, I decided to read up on Linux Mint and remembered a co-worker was using it as his primary OS. I have also been playing with Fedora more lately due to its support for containers. I feel that is the future on application deployments. However, since Mint is based on Debian and Ubuntu, it is more of a comfort thing for me. My co-workers suggestion was to try out Cinnamon. As an Ubuntu package for cinnamon is no longer maintained, I found a PPA that is still being maintained of the Cinnamon stable branch (yes, I am aware the Cinnamon maintainer has a PPA for nightly builds, but I'm not quite that brave). I installed it with:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:lestcape/cinnamon
sudo apt-get install cinnamon

Once installed you need to logout and choose Cinnamon from the login session screen, like so:

Cinnamon

After that you will see a much more responsive UI. And for you Windows users, it will feel very familiar, as the taskbar and icons are in the usual locations.

desktop

NOTE: To those that actually read this, I did try gnome session fallback and had many issues with it. I am also aware that there is an official Ubuntu Gnome variant of Ubuntu now also. Hadn't tried it.