Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Have your IMs spoke to you with good voices

When using Pidgin, and you receive an IM, you will hear it spoken to you, even if Pidgin is buried under many windows or on another workspace. Following these instructions will get you the good sounding voices, the pidgin plugin, the files necessary to use mbrola English voices with festival since the Pidgin plugin uses Festival. The last command just creates a .festivalrc file in your home directory that will fix issues with errors about /dev/dsp and not hearing the text being spoken. I've just done this today after much research, so I've saved you the time. I've been playing with and using Text to Speech for a long time, and I've been in the process of creating my own software. I could use some donations!!! Yes, I do have a working product, but I am expanding it big time and have great plans for it. Enjoy this. Be sure to go to your list of plugins in Pidgin when done and enable pidgin-festival, and choose between the voices that you have installed. us1 is a female voice btw. It will look like this when you go to configure plugin.

# Install the plugin
sudo apt-get install pidgin-festival 
# Install mbrola with all English voices available for it
# Yes, there is a question mark there. This bash globbing, matches mbrola-us1, mbrola-us2 and mbrola-us3
sudo apt-get install mbrola mbrola-en1 mbrola-us?
sudo apt-get install festvox-us? festvox-en1 # Again, use the question mark in the command
# Optional step
printf “;use ALSA\n(Parameter.set ‘Audio_Method ‘Audio_Command)\n(Parameter.set ‘Audio_Command \”aplay -q -c 1 -t raw -f s16 -r \$SR \$FILE\”)\n” | tee -a .festivalrc

When you are done, go lift 300 lbs like I did!!!

Removing history from Places - Saved Documents

This is very simple. It works by preventing the history from being able to be stored (writable).

$ rm -f ~/.recently-used.xbel
$ mkdir ~/.recently-used.xbel
$ chmod 000 ~/.recently-used.xbel

I was suspicious about this program called BleachBit. To me it sounded like some yucky windows software that had made its way over to Linux. My suspicion was wrong. I will give you some warnings about using it.

Go to the downloads page, scroll down and get the bonus pack to go with it as well.

This will clean house with all those messy dot files in your home folder among other things, and to my surprise, the first time I ran it, it removed a little over 1 gb of useless junk. Before deleting, look at a preview of what it will do to make sure that when you run it, it's not deleting something you had told it not to.

Do we really need language support for every language in all our programs? You can tell it which languages you will use and then it will go delete local files for all other languages that were not the ones you choose, for me, I kept Arabic, Spanish, and English, and the rest is not wasting space anymore

Here's a list of some things you may want to be sure are not checked.
  • Bash History
  • Saved Firefox Passwords (good to have a master password if you save them)
  • Nexuiz Cache, not sure if this will delete my custom maps I had downloaded so left unchecked
  • Pidgin Chat Logs (if you don't want these saved, then you should have them disabled in Pidgin)
  • Trash, I usually overview it before I empty it
  • System Logs, god no 
It's all user preference though. If you don't have certain programs that it lists, it doesn't hurt to check them. Now that I've warned you, go use it. I have not had any problems, but if you do, I don't take responsibility. Go get mad at the developers :) or thank them for a nice program.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Software I am coding for Linux

I am currently designing two software projects for Linux. One is working, and I just need to add to it. It's multithreaded and works just fine through the command line, but what I am about to do with it will blow anybodys mind away the way I have it designed. It will use some datastructures such as a Queue feeding one token at a time xD. I've written my own data structure. It would be very cool to incorporate that into the code, but it doesn't fit with what I am doing. ABSOLUTELY NO SOFTWARE MADE FOR LINUX EXIST WITH WHAT I AM CREATING!!!!!!!!! PERIOD!!!!! NOT EVEN WINDOWS CAN COMPARE TO THIS GODDAMN SHIT. I hit a roadblock, something new to me, and I am madly reading up on it and studying code examples. I know how to create multi-threaded applications and have done so, but when a gui is added to it, that changes things up, so now I am in the process of learning how to do it with Swing. But the GUI will take on the GTK gui interface if ran under Gnome. It will appear native to whatever environment it's run on, and since I don't care for Windoze, I won't bother to make sure it runs under that you suckers. If you have ever used TextAloud, this is similar to what I am creating for Linux except from a users point of view (me) knows what it is lacking and how to make it a ton better. I use this example because that is what most people are familiar with when it comes to text to speech software. Any text that can be selected can be read in a good sounding voice including your Optical Character Recognition.

As much as I want to jump to the second project which would be easier for me because I know how to do it without learning much new, I won't. I won't start a new project without finishing the one I started already. 

Please, everything I do is for free and for the community. Please donate. The amount is not important. I guarantee you that it will speed up the process. Contact me for those wanting to see OSS and good free software to strive.