computing

Speed up MATLAB on MacOS X  mac

On MacOS X 10.5 there is considerable slow-down in the MATLAB editor and other GUI elements. The issue is related to a change in the default Mac Java 2D rendering engine from Quartz2D (10.4) and Sun2D (10.5). This newer rendering engine improves performance for figure drawing, but ... More

Customize directory colors  bash

You can use the command ls --color (or an alias) to show directories with colours for folders, files, links, etc. However, you may not realise these colours can be easily configured using bashrc and a configuration file. Edit your .bashrc file (in your home directory) to include the following line ... More

Control memcached from the command line  bash

memcached is a general-purpose distributed memory caching system originally developed by Danga Interactive for LiveJournal but now used by many other sites. It is often used to speed up dynamic database-driven websites by caching data and objects in RAM to reduce the number of times an external data source (such ... More

Install Haiku under Mac OS X with Virtualbox

Haiku is an open source operating system currently in development that specifically targets personal computing. Inspired by the Be Operating System, development began in 2001, and the operating system became self-hosting in 2008 with the first alpha release in September 2009, the second in May 2010 and the third in ... More

Find all files containing a given string  bash

A quick one-liner to recursively search files for a given text string. Open up a terminal session and enter the following - replacing "foo" with the text to search for. find . -exec grep -l "foo" {} \; You can also limit the search to files with a particular extension (e.g. HTML or ... More

Kill unresponsive applications on Linux  linux

Sometimes things go a bit wrong. Sometimes they go very wrong. XKill is a simple little application that allows you to kill a running X application that has got out of kilter. Think of this as a quick way to get back control of your Desktop. More

Change the 'Desktop' directory on Linux  linux

On desktop setups where icons are shown on the desktop these are normally taken from the specific folder ~/Desktop. If you find you want to show icons from either your Home or another directory for a particular install/user you can do so by editing the user-dirs config file as ... More

Collaborate in the shell with screen (multiuser)  bash

Screen is a neat little program that allows you to use multiple virtual terminals in a single session on Unix/Linux and Mac. However, it does more than just that. It can also allow you to share your current session on a machine with another user - allowing you to collaboratively ... More

Bash Command Substitution  bash

Bash command substitution performs a given command replacing the marker with the resulting standard output. It is particularly useful when you want to store the output of a command in a variable or as an alternative method of chaining multiple commands together. Bash command substitution is achieved by wrapping your ... More

Syntax highlighting with Django and Markdown  web

Syntax highlighting is more than just eye candy. It can turn a block of impenetrable code into a simple grok (although it has it's limits). To boost the usability of our code guides on this site we wanted to implement nice clear syntax highlighting of our hacks. Code samples are already marked up with markdown syntax so an extension to this is the obvious choice. More

Remove duplicate lines from text files (with sort)  bash

A quick method to remove duplicates from text files - including for example CSV files - where multiple records have been added (perhaps automatically) at different times resulting in multiple copies of the same record scattered throughout the file. Here is a simple one-liner bash command to remove duplicates using sort. More

Control Console with SysReq  bash

System request (often abbreviated SysRq or Sys Req) is a key on keyboards for PCs that has no standard use. This key can be traced back to the operator interrupt key of the IBM System/370 mainframe computer. But under Linux there's a bunch of useful things available via ... More

Get a list of all processes not run by you  bash

Find the currently running processes on your system that were not started by yourself. A great way to find out what is hogging your system on multiple-user setups or remote logins. Open up a terminal session and enter: ps aux | grep -v `whoami` ps aux returns (a) all processes with ... More

Get file type information from the command line  bash

Often forgotten the file command will give you a simple summary of a file's type and content. At the prompt enter file where is the name of the file you are interested in. You will receive output detailing the files contents, e.g. A Word Document.doc ... More

Install Cinnamon on Ubuntu 12.04  linux

Cinnamon is a re-implementation of the Gnome 2 desktop in GTK3 developed by the Linux Mint project as an alternative to both Gnome3/Shell and Ubuntu Unity. Here we explain how to install Cinnamon on top of your Ubuntu installation, without installing Linux Mint. As with all Ubuntu unsupported software ... More

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