sprezzatech blog #0013
SprezzOS Weeklyish Oblations, Objections, and News (SWOON) Vol. 1 Issue 4.
Fri, 22 Feb 2013 00:59:33 -0500
SprezzOS Weeklyish Oblations, Objections, and News (SWOON)
Volume I, Issue 4. 2013-02-22. Editor: Nick Black.
The Unreal City. Under the brown fog of a winter dawn, a crowd flowed over London Bridge, so many, I had not thought death had undone so many. Sighs, short and infrequent, were exhaled, and each man fixed his eyes before his feet. Flowed up the hill and down King William Street, to where Saint Mary Woolnoth kept the hours with a dead sound on the final stroke of nine. There I saw one I knew, and stopped him, crying “Stetson! You who were with me in the ships at Mylae! That corpse you planted last year in your garden, Has it begun to sprout? Will it bloom this year? Or has the sudden frost disturbed its bed? Oh keep the Dog far hence, that’s friend to men, or with his nails he’ll dig it up again! You! hypocrite lecteur! — mon semblable, — mon frère!” (London Bridge circa 1922).
I. INTRODUCTORY RITES
“Come in under the shadow of this red rock,
And I will show you something different from either
Your shadow at morning striding behind you
Or your shadow at evening rising to meet you;
I will show you fear in a handful of dust.”
—T. S. Eliot, The Wasteland
It has become more than clear from feedback in private emails, webfora, mailing lists and statistics that the installer is not just a major timesuck for me (see last week's SWOON), but a major impediment to SprezzOS adoption in general. Reasons appear to include:
- Growlight. My growlight tool, while powerful and flexible, has proven unintuitive. Not a surprise, I suppose, given my background and objectives, but a real problem when it's the first major step in installing SprezzOS. Solution: Bug 632 mandates support for the same recipes (known as “guided partitioning” in the debian-installer's Partman tool) supported by d-i. Bug 322 requires that the Help subdisplay become fully context-sensitive; that is, commands irrelevant at the given time ought be dimmed. Bug 222 would have us clearly indicate or at least suggest the next step to take towards finalizing an appropriate boot device. I hadn't thought of these as very high-priority bugs, but feedback will correct you every time. I've also heard both good and bad reports regarding use of ZFS, the latter of which need be investigated.
- No X following reboot. I'm of the school that assumes far fewer machines run X than do not, and that X is very much not desirable on machines which do not need run it, and that in any case X requires enough personal involvement in issues of appearance, UI, etc that a “default” GUI is going to do nothing but make most users unhappy and foster a false sense of a holistic ecosystem. This last leads to panels which only work with certain window managers, shutdown buttons that only work with certain session managers, and multimedia keys that flitter in and out of recognition depending on one's desktop environment du jour. Apparently on this, as on so many other things, I am out of touch with the young people and their rock n' roll music [waves cane]. I've received a good dozen mails asking “why am I dropped to a command prompt after install? Is something broken?” and I'm like, “you've been dropped into your birthright, eight virtual consoles worth of expanse waiting for you to manifest your destiny all over them,” to which I in all truthfulness received one reply consisting of only, “Oh.” In that Oh I realized that the four years or so I spent without a working X11R6.5.1 was not an experience most people are looking to live through. Solution: Bug 484 deals with integration of basic X setup into the installer.
- Final package installation step (sometimes) fails. This is a volatile byproduct of our installation of Debian Unstable underneath SprezzOS, and incidently is the main reason why Debian does not support direct installation of Unstable (you're supposed to install Testing, then dist-upgrade to unstable). It will stop happening soon. The explanation and solution and whys and hows are kinda complex, by which I mean I don't myself understand them very well and thus can't really explain them to you. That said, I have (if I may say so) exceptional intuition regarding this shit, and the solution will fall out of some other work, and just bear with us please. You can almost always hop over to the utility console, drop into the chroot, and solve these issues with a TTY-connected APT operation. For those of you with no clue as to what I just said, you obviously cannot always do this, and I hope to have this stupidity resolved soon.
- Unavailability of prepared images. Whether Azure, Puppet, Vagrant, AWS, or whatever other of 4,006 Linux virtualization solutions, people want to dispense with the installer altogether. I simply hadn't really considered this as a way to become familiar with a distro, but it makes plenty of sense. I'll look into this, and would be happy to provide storage and bandwidth to user-created images in the meantime.
By the way, this entire SWOON was composed while listening to “In the A” on repeat. Dig the Brand Nubian shout-out: punks jump up to get beat down! Atlanta love!
II. LITURGY OF THE WORD
Blender 2.65a ⇒ 2.66, packaged today. Linux ⇒ 3.8.0; we're sitting on 3.7.9 for the moment. Cogl ⇒ 1.13.4, packaged today; I also built cogl's GLESv2 support, in its own cogl-gles package. Clutter ⇒ 1.13.5. GNOME getting ready for 3.8, updated to 3.7.90 about halfway across the board. Kicked out most of the KDE 4.10.0 update. Haskell's Yesod, Conduit and WAI are all up-to-date with their big release from this month. OpenImageIO ⇒ 1.1.7. GNU's uPNP stack all got refreshed. Rygel got major packaging work and is now up-to-date and fully lethal. New Intel X server, X.org input ABI 19.1, and colord ⇒ 0.30 round out the remaining big updates from this week.
καὶ εἰς ἕνα Κύριον Ἰησοῦν Χριστὸν τὸν υἱὸν τοῦ Θεοῦ τὸν Μονογενῆ.
III. LITURGY OF THE EUCHARIST
Work on Raptorial is accelerating. I have high hopes for it.
We'll soon be the fifth OS tracked by HackageDB. I got it approved by them yesterday, and am already generating our matrix for intake. Now, on the subject of Comparative Haskell Stacks, a visual aid:
welllllllllllllllllllll after that display of kicking ass, hrmm...
Fair enough. This guy, this guy knows what I'm talkin' about, though...
IV. COMMUNION RITE
Totally lame—no SprezzOS patches were accepted upstream this week! I've got two that I was hoping would go in (one for Muffin, one for gnome-disks), but neither have yet been taken up. Bah! That was a nice little streak we had going.
Agnus Dei, qui tollis peccata mundi, miserere nobis.
V. CONCLUDING RITE
- The most recent release of SprezzOS is 1.0.4 ("von Neumann").
- There are now 1680 source packages in SprezzOS.
- There are now 7281 binary packages in SprezzOS.
- There were 188 commits to SprezzOS repositories this week.
- There are now 2 registered Sprezzadevs.
Ite, missa est.
Folgers: It's good to the last drop.
Per ardua ad astra.