The Midlife Geek

Ramblings of a middle aged engineer, runner and open source enthusiast

Tag: Windows

Project Euler, Visual Studio and playing with Python

I got Visual Studio 2017 through Microsoft’s Dreamspark promotion and thought I’d give it a try. I haven’t done a lot of development under Windows because its only on my laptop and my Linux desktop has 12 Gb RAM.
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Asus X541S

My wife’s laptop is an Asus X541SA – a fairly generic and inexpensive workhorse. With a Quad-Core N3710, 4Gb of RAM and a 1TB HDD. Unfortunately its ridiculously slow. Opening, switching and closing applications leaves time to make a cup of tea and clicking save in Word is likely to see a “(not responding)” caption in the title bar.

A quick look in task manager shows the HDD is perpetually at 100%. Having already tried a clean install of Windows 10, I figured an SSD might help. I got this 120 Gb SanDisk SSD, having used them before with good results.

What a difference it makes, the laptop is not only usable but responsive. While I doubt it would handle many games it can at least cope with Office and Firefox, which it couldn’t before.

Secure Android Development, project preparation, a cold and a new year

It’s been a mixed start to the new year. Watching what I eat for the rest of January, damn you Christmas. Back at work after three weeks off, achieved nothing and left by eleven. My ego got the better of me and I went for a run despite having a cold, so am now suffering. Need to shift it with the first cross country league race on Wednesday. I can’t help wondering why generic medicines are so much cheaper than brand names.

Finally got around to ordering a replacement Acer V3-112P screen. Replacement was straight forward. Like most avionics technicians, I breathed a sigh of relief when the LED panel lit up proving the fault. The old girl is now sitting running a million updates courtesy of Microsoft.

While many Linux advocates eschew Microsoft, I prefer Office (Home Use Program). Like current, I take the path of least resistance and I use Word and Excel so often I know them inside out. Linux is an outstanding development platform, I’m using it for TM470.

TM470 project preparation continues, reviewing both TM353 and TM354. FutureLearn is a fantastic resource with a course on Secure Android Development. Delivered by the University of Southampton, it started last week. I haven’t decided the tool chain yet, particularly versioning. I have used SVN and Bazaar, which I prefer as it integrates well with Launch Pad. I won’t be using LP though so should investigate Mercurial and Git.

Read Original Sin too – best Marvel I’ve read in ages. Like Murder She Wrote in space. A real page turner, I read it in one sitting.

Something that didn’t grip me was the Assassin’s Creed movie. It starts off quite well, with a similar story to the games. It suffers the same problem as earlier games though – the present interrupts more interesting stories in the past. What I don’t get though is why option a game as a property then try not to appeal to that market?

What I haven’t made time for though is the Nintendo Classic Mini. I played a little Ghosts ‘n Goblins – damn I forgot how hard games were then. I always thought as a kid that I’d somehow be better at them as an adult but I guess I didn’t factor in reactions.

Advocacy by not advocating

We have Ubuntu installed on two of the machines at home and recently, after losing a Windows restore disc, I suggested installing Ubuntu 10.04 on her Dell 1545 after my suggestion.

As installations go, it was relatively painless – certainly better than reinstalling Windows. Don’t get me wrong, Dell is better than most in this respect as they gave us OEM install discs for Windows Vista, bundled software and the drivers.  As strait forward as this is with Dell’s resource CD (it mostly tells you what you need), it doesn’t know any more than what model you own. This is problematic with the wireless card for example as there are two revision states and the drivers are incompatible with each other – one crashes Windows.

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