New laptop

A few days ago I bought a Lenovo Ideapad 320-15AST. I had a budget of €400 and, after browsing a few stores for a couple of hours, I found this one for a bit less than €350.

At the hardware level, the computer has reasonable specs. They are (retrieved from inxi):

CPU: AMD A9-9420 dual core (1397MHz/3000MHz | boost: 3600MHz)
GPU: AMD Radeon R7 M260/M265
HDD: 1000.2GB 5400RPM
RAM: 8GB DDR4

This is the first time I’m buying Lenovo. I’ve always had a preference for Asus that dates around two decades, either in laptops or in desktops and components. Also, I haven’t used AMD for probably 10 years or more, but I have good memories of their CPUs at the time, so let’s see how this goes. The expectations are high.

Somewhat sadly, it came with Windows 10 preinstalled and the store clerk said they wouldn’t refund me for the license. I wasn’t that much disappointed (although it would’ve been nice to save a few dozen euros) because this will come in hand in the situations I have to give support to computers with this OS installed.

After completing the initial Windows setup, I downloaded and installed Firefox, proceeded to transfer Manjaro and wrote the ISO file to a USB drive. Don’t know why, but it got a kernel panic everytime I tried to boot it.

Next in line was Ubuntu and everything went smoothly. It’s still going. The computer has a good performance with this OS, even when I’m playing Football Manager 2018, browsing the web and listening to music on Youtube, all at the same time.

I do notice, however, the lack of performance of the hard drive, compared to the SSD I have in the old laptop. I have to switch it soon and get a caddy.

How-to customize the Bash prompt

In order to adapt a bit more my Debian Stable installation to my workflow, I’ve been tweaking the bash prompt. Simplicity and small line width are key here, because I often have tmux running with several panes in the same window and small panes with large one-liner prompts suck a lot! Everything feels crammed and hard to read. Just take a look at the image below to get an idea.

crammed bash prompt

After running a few commands in each pane with this prompt configuration, everything gets really crowded and confuse. For sanity safeguarding reasons and workflow improvement, the only thing to do is customize the prompt.

The Debian Stable bash prompt, shown on the image above, default value is:

if [ "$color_prompt" = yes ]; then
    PS1='${debian_chroot:+($debian_chroot)}\[\033[01;32m\]\u@\h\[\033[00m\]:\[\033[01;34m\]\w\[\033[00m\]\$ '
else
    PS1='${debian_chroot:+($debian_chroot)}\u@\h:\w\$ '
fi
unset color_prompt force_color_prompt

To make it more useful, I changed the second line to this:

PS1="[\033[00;32m]\u@\h[\033[00m]:\w[\033[00m]\n└─ [$(tput bold)]\$(__git_ps1 '[%s] ')\$: [$(tput sgr0)]"

All put together:

if [ "$color_prompt" = yes ]; then
		PS1="\[\033[00;32m\]\u@\h\[\033[00m\]:\w\[\033[00m\]\n└─ \[$(tput bold)\]\$(__git_ps1 '[%s] ')\$: \[$(tput sgr0)\]"
else
    PS1='${debian_chroot:+($debian_chroot)}\u@\h:\w\$ '
fi
unset color_prompt force_color_prompt

And this is the result:

readable bash prompt

Not only I get a more readable prompt (and with “more room to breathe”, if you may), but I get the name of the current branch if I’m in a Git repository folder. This is a convenient feature to have if you work with this version control system.

There are a lot more ways one can configure the prompt. Both How-To Geek and Boolean World websites have nice introductory guides to get you started. The Arch Linux wiki entry about this is also a good read. Oh, and RTFM (Read The … Fine … Manual).

“Queijo fresco (sem lactose) com atum enlatado”, a melhor playlist do Spotify

Não fazia ideia até ter tido a ideia de escrever este post, mas tenho conta no Spotify desde pelo menos Janeiro de 2013, que é a data do email mais antigo (do serviço) que encontro na minha caixa de correio. Só há uns meses, no entanto é que subscrevi a conta premium. Desde então, tenho aproveitado para criar algumas playlists na plataforma.

Isto não é algo exclusivo das contas pagas; estúpido seria se só os utilizadores pagantes pudessem criar listas de músicas. A verdade é que eu não utilizava assim tanto quanto isso o serviço até passar a ter conta paga e por isso não tinha dado a atenção devida às playlists. Para as lides musicais online, normalmente usava o Youtube, o Mixcloud, o Soundcloud e o Shoutcast.

Como pago, acabo por usar mais o serviço, até no carro. E uma das coisas para que eu o uso mais, porque é muito bom para isso, é para descobrir músicas novas. Algumas dessas descobertas têm sido tão agradáveis que há pouco mais de uma semana acabei por criar uma playlist dedicada a elas e a que podem aceder aqui ou ouvir no final do texto.

Não se assustem com o nome. “Queijo fresco (sem lactose) com atum enlatado” foi escolhido porque, tal como as músicas que figuram nesta playlist, também esta combinação de ingredientes (com uma pitada de coentros e sal fino, um fio de azeite e um pingo de vinagre) foi uma muito agradável surpresa.

Boas audições. E caso vos tenha dado a fome: o queijo fresco sem lactose do Lidl é muito bom.