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Please, stop abusing “tar” with “zxvf”

I can’t stand it anymore, I need to write something about the abuse of tar(1) I constantly see around the web. It hurts my eyes, it bothers me because of its abuse of the UNIX philosophy, and most importantly, it teaches bad practices to new (and older) users of GNU tools.

Most often I notice this usage of tar in instructions given at download pages of open-source software, where a user needs to download a bundle of code and needs instructions how to extract it, build it and install it.

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Remove a shell loop: xargs unusual usage

I would like to write down an unknown, yet very useful, usage of xargs(1).

In short, if I want to run a command on a list of files stored in a file, I could simply go for:

$ xargs -n1 ls -lh < files.lst

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Disable Keyboard Shortcuts at gnome-terminal

It is amazing how poor or absent is the documentation at Gnome 2.x, yet it can be operated by anybody without any doubts or second thoughts. Amazing! I’ve just recently needed to disable some Keyboard Shortcuts at the gnome-terminal application. The settings can be found at “Edit | Keyboard Shortcuts…” menu option (how obvious). I very easily spotted the required command I wanted to change. By clicking at the command’s shortcut you’re given with the option of changing this option. But, how can I disable it? Searching the relevant document text, it is only mentioned how somebody can actually view this information! Unbelievable!!!

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Creating Virtual Development Environments

All developers, sooner or later, need to create an isolated and well-known environment for their work, which won’t affect or be affected by the hosting environment where the user works on.

This is a standard case that happens quite often while developing on Python.  There are many elegant solutions for this problem, and one of them is Virtualenv. Read more…

Yocto Project and Embedded Linux

After reading this introductory aritcle about Yocto Project, I became curious a lot to check it out and start playing with it a bit. Especially after I’ve read about the existing QEMU-support and the detailed instructions for Getting Started and Quick Start Guide.

So, I leave here a note to check it out, both Yocto and OpenEmbedded project. The next crucial is having an appropriate good machine to run these guides and deploy the development tools!

Vim’s hanging indent

This tip is not Linux-specific (since is available at so many platforms) but it is surely useful, at least to me, for daily programming or other editing activities that take place on Linux. I leave here this note, since this Vim’s feature is one that I always forget how to access and use it: I want to format paragraphs having a left, hanging indent.

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Bash Completion Reference for Git

The following staff can be found at Git‘s contrib directory and in Bash‘s completion directory, which of course is copied from the first one. I’ve put it here just for easy and quick reference of the relevant information. Further customization of Bash’s prompt is, of course, desirable. Read more…