Monthly Archives: July 2014

Fun Programs: Bible Time

We only found this piece of software a few days ago, but thought you might like to give it a whirl as well. It’s called Bible Time, and what it does is allow you to install the Bible of your choice (We prefer the King James or the New American Standard) and use the software to both read through the Bible, but also, the software allows you to integrate study notes from various Bible teachers, as well as write your own study notes for later referral.

Call us old fashioned, *(or just plain old) but my bride of 34 years and I, have always enjoyed our daily Bible study together. We credit it for keeping our marriage strong, and giving us the strength to deal what life throws at us.

Installing is easy, just open your Software Manager and search for Bible Time. Once installed, you can download study materials from a variety of sources, or user your own. If you are in an oppressive country, you can use the software in an Off-Line mode, installing the study materials from disk rather than downloading them.

Bible Time

Bible Time

Fun Programs: Gnome Predict

One of our favorite pass times here on the farm, is amateur radio. When I can get some extra time between taking care of our farm and family, I spend it on the radio. One of the things amateur radio operators like to do is talk to each other using the many amateur radio satellites in orbit. I even got to talk with the International Space Station several years ago. What was a kick!

The thing about using satellites, is you  need to know where they are to use them. The best Linux software to do that is called Gnome Predict.

Head over to your Software Manager and search for gpredict, install it and then launch it from the menu.

Gnome Predict

Gnome Predict

After the software is installed, head over to the Preferences menu and set up your location in the software. This will allow the software to show you, as in the example above, when a satellite will be in range for you to communicate with it.

Not an amateur radio operator? No problem, it is way cool to plot when the International Space Station is going to be going over your house. If you can catch it when the sun is behind you, you can watch the ISS streak by, in the night sky!

 

 

Edit Your Menus

Want to edit your menu system? It’s as easy as right clicking on the menu button, and selecting  Edit Menu!

Menu Editor

Menu Editor

Editing you menu, will allow you to remove menu items you don’t use, or don’t care about. Even better, you can add to the functionality of a program that you are launching. As an example, when I open the Caja file manager, I want it to always open in my Download directory, where I put all of my temporary stuff. Editing the Caja menu item let’s me do that:

Editing Example

Editing Example

In this case, it’s as easy as adding the desired director to the end of the default Caja launching command.

Give it a try, poke around, it’s a great way to learn how Linux launches programs!

 

 

 

Audio Tools: Sound Juicer

If you’re like me, you have hundreds, maybe even thousands of audio CDs in your music collection. The best way to get that music on your tablet or phone? Sound Juicer!

Sound Juicer

Sound Juicer

Open your Software Manager, and search for Sound Juicer. After it’s installed, you can launch the program from your Menu. Next, stick a CD in your drive. Sound Juicer will automatically rip your CD into the directory of your choice. Once that’s done, you can use EZTag to tag your audio files with the album and song information.

 

Breaking Things: Thunderbird Mail

I’m not sure what it is about Mint 17, but I’ve been having a strange problem with programs just refusing to launch. If I watch the system monitor, I can see the file get loaded into memory, but then it goes zombie on me and then quits. This has happened to a good dozen programs over the past month.

If this happens to you, it’s pretty easy to fix though. Just open your Package Manager, find the program that is misbehaving, right click on the program name and mark it for reinstallation.

Reinstalling Thunderbird

Reinstalling Thunderbird

This problem has cropped up with the System Monitor, Caja, and a couple of other important programs. Tests on my hard drive and memory all report everything as fine. Guess I’ll just wait it out and see what happens.