Flatpak wonders and Google’s claws – The Technical WEREhouse #1

Hello everyone and welcome to the very first episode of The Technical Werehouse with your host Chris Were, that’s me and this is the first episode of ten pilot episodes to see if I can get this podcast idea off the ground see what it might look like and and so forth now I’ll talk a little bit more about the mechanic about the mechanics of this podcast towards the end of the show but I’d rather not get stuck down in the meta stuff straight away today I would like to share some news which came out a couple of days ago I’m looking now at a tweet by Alexander Larsson Alexander Larsson is a well he’s a known developer and a Red Hat desktop guy as per his Twitter profile says and he tweeted out something incredibly interesting on the 14th of September 2018 flat-pack on Windows it’s got some hacky workarounds but it basically works and he showed us a screenshot of I think it’s is it gnome recipe gnome food is there a place that no map location where you can look up recipes and so forth oh yeah I quite like it myself as well and he showed it running on Windows 10 now he does say that it requires the window subsystem for Linux and let’s see you can even check that he says it requires the windows subsystem for Linux and a Windows 32 Xserver but the screenshot doesn’t seem to be lying here and this is quite interesting and it really does open up my mind to a whole world of possibilities about what this could mean now I don’t know how you guys feel about it but I think this is wonderful news I think this is a chance to show the users of Windows some of the real benefits that that Linux and the Linux community and the whole world that we sort of operate within I say we I obviously have no idea what operating system you happen to be using as you are listening to this but this is a great way for linux software to to be an ambassador into the mainstream of Technology because rightly or wrongly Windows is still seen as the mainstream on on the desktop and it’s important to remember that Linux isn’t just the kernel it’s it’s so much more than that it’s the it’s the you know the new tools on top of that it’s the it’s our package managers it’s our it’s our repositories it’s all this kind of software and the more of it we can introduce to Windows users the better because maybe eventually we’ll get to that stage where our software becomes so useful to so many people that switching out the operating system beneath it is trivial and that would be a really great way to bring bring people across to Linux because it’s difficult it’s difficult when I moved across to Linux from Windows I did it I did it knowing that it was going to be difficult and I did it at university now I didn’t study anything to do with computers at university but I but when you’re a student the university culture really does encourage you to to learn new things and to you know to explore your sort of intellectual identity if you will and and I used those opportunities that you know the library the computers the you know the my various you know fellow students and the you know the knowledge that they share to get into the world of Linux and and when you’re a student you do have the time to do this kind of stuff as well nowadays with the work that I do it really is a challenge to find time to learn new things but it I firmly believe that it is incredibly important to persevere and to keep learning so that we the very least remember how to learn learning in and learning in and of itself is a skill so I have every sympathy for people who are trying to learn Linux and and trying to learn Linux operating systems and who are struggling because I struggle to and any efforts we can achieve to make that transition more seamless and smoother I think is great and that’s why I will always give the benefit of the doubt to things like electron apps that’s why I think that this steam proton or whine it’s great it’s great and those of you that have watched me stream video games on YouTube will know that I’m a great fan of wine and I love playing the old games I love playing your grand theft auto’s and and the old hitman games man do I love those old hitman games man they are maybe you know showing their age a little bit now and and even with all of this technology it helps transition and it helps link the you know helps link our culture’s and and that to me is only a good thing it’s only a little tweak but I think that it certainly implies or teases a lot more than just that I have to say I am excited and this is a great time to be in in the Linux world in the open source world in this kind of space because we’re making games like never before cross-platform apps are really just a way to bring us closer together and and and it makes it that much more trivial to leave Windows for an operating system that you choose and fundamentally and most importantly it makes it a choice not a sacrifice not a journey not not a trial but ideally it would just be easy to switch out from Windows to Linux even a BSD or haiku heaven forbid you know and that would be that would be absolutely wonderful so I am absolutely looking forward to this like never before and and cross-platform does seem to be the way I mean you know like I say we’ve got proton we’ve got steam and all that kind of stuff the Unity engine as well that is is making great strides in in making games available cross-platform got Vulcan fantastic stuff and a lot of money a lot of effort a lot of time a lot of expertise has gone into into achieving this and I only see wonderful things on the horizon it’s a hard-fought journey fought by some of the smartest people I can I can imagine but flap back some windows that’s definitely definitely something to watch definitely something to look forward to I got a I got to admit I don’t have to do much more to say on it other than that but I am definitely going to be paying attention to how this progresses so onto the second part of today’s episode and it’s some well I’m not gonna call it some some listener feedback because this is not feedback obviously from the show but I had an email come in from someone who watches my my youtube channel and it was incredibly well thought out email that I feel represents the perspectives of a great number of people so I’m gonna read it out but I’m not gonna read it out in its entirety I’m just going to get to the the fundamental questions thoughts and and the the crux of the the email so hi what are your thoughts on Apple devices from the point of view of privacy mostly thinking of iPads and iPhones obviously their pricing structures have somewhat surpassed the point of ridiculousness but pricing aside with the ongoing news on the total disregard for our privacy that is coming out of Google I’m steadily approaching the point where D googling is something that needs to happen the abuse is starting to our way even my lazy-ass on convenience on Apple side of the fence at least selling your data or profile for marketing is not a stated product obviously data outside your total control can always be misused but it is not their business model for now at least on pricing I have never been a heavy phone user so I have tended to buy mid-range Android phones with memory on the low end typically around DKK 3,000 equivalent to all right okay yes that’s equivalent to 370 British pounds sterling so I suppose in American dollars that would be perhaps in the $500 ballpark with the notion that it needs to live for two to three years before being replaced this is obviously enough on the hardware side but software updates tend to die out after half that time on the other hand I could get an iPhone 8 32 gigabyte for about double that which would receive iOS updates for five to six years based on past performance if that’s true or if that’s the true cost of ownership if that’s true the cost of ownership would be about the same okay so I’m gonna want to that part of the email now because there is more to come so this is always a difficult one there’s obviously going to be no right answer here because you are in the absolute lion’s den of you know of privacy pitfalls in regards to this so just on the point of view of privacy I don’t even know if you can really have privacy when using a smartphone or in fact any mobile phone now there are a few things to consider here and that’s privacy from whom because there are likely to be some people who not all people not all users of your data are necessarily created equally some people might be more comfortable for example with their government holding data on them whereas maybe less so with Google and probably even more less so than whatever third-party app developer that you happen to have installed apps from I’m sure there are plenty of people out there who just install apps completely at a moment’s notice without researching them and probably ascending data off to to all manner of companies and some companies are going to treat your data more nefariously than others so there is a degree of discretion here now when it comes to mobile phones they clock into their their signal towers and I have seen cases from years ago where in court where people who have claimed an alibi and had that alibi proven false because they can actually track where a phone triangulates its signal from and this is and I’m thinking of specific cases now prior to smart phones phones can concoct data pretty easily and I think that if you want absolute privacy the phone has to stay at home so so then well we can go on to well Apple versus Google in regards to the two primary operating systems for mobile phones and you’re right Apple do have this level of surveillance baked into their business model and they have a lessened financial incentive to manipulate you using your data now can that be said for the apps that you might then subsequently install on top of that well again that’s obviously down to your discretion however I do know a number of Linux users open-source advocates privacy advocates who do trust iPhones / Android and I think that there is a good case to be made that on the base level of just taking the phones assuming that you’re gonna exercise discretion and and research and and all that kind of stuff on top of that the iPhone could very well be the more secure option we’ve seen their encryption tested and proved that to be pretty good we’ve seen that Apple have outright refused to add backdoors into their their operating system into their software and that’s you know point in their favor and they have even open sourced a fair amount of their software on their iOS offer as well to what extent I’m not entirely sure Apple is is definitely a company that I’m not particularly familiar with but they have open sourced more than they could have and more than they have in previous years so and and we’re all familiar with how google seem to be adopting this new new microsoft mantra of embrace extend extinguish which is again a little bit concerning so the price of iphones for me is is is out of my price range and i can only speak to that personally so obviously that’s something that you’ll have to consult with yourself but i think the the question or the point that you suggest is certainly valid that if you want as much privacy you can for the convenience of a smartphone an iPhone might be a good way to go now what have I done with my phone my alive I’ve covered this in videos before but I have decided to debug all my Android phone as much as possible I’ve decided to not log into any of my Google services of which I don’t really use that many Google services I think the only one I can think of off the top of my head is of course YouTube I’m sure there are one or two that I’ve completely forgotten about because you know how Google likes to dig its claws into every little facet of Technology in modern society these days but D googling it as much as possible and instead of using the Play Store I used the f-droid Store not signing in to anything I think I’ve managed to create the best of a bad situation here I believe that I’m in control about with as much of my data as possible I don’t put anything onto my phone that for example if I lost my phone it could be used against me so I haven’t got banking information on there I sort of almost treat my phone as if it is a public-facing computer in a way now that being said you can almost certainly find enough data in that phone to cause some kind of problems wreak some kind of hagit havoc or even impersonate me enough so it’s certainly not an ideal solution but the bottom line is that smart phones aren’t an ideal solution and it’s the allure of convenience that is going to hamstrung us I believe you know convenience is the bait and I think we’re just walking completely right into that trap so I’ve noticed that my smartphone which is a cheap eula phone really and I got it for about 120 quid you’re starting to the battery is starting to show its age now so it might be that in a couple of weeks time I might have to look at getting a new phone and I’ve looked on the internet for my pricing options and it looks like I can pick up a really quite a nice secondhand one for 50 British pounds that’s about what 70 75 American dollars I’m sorry I don’t know what that is in in your currency I’m afraid but but that still puts me relatively at the same place that I am today and there is a part of me that wants to put off getting a smartphone once my one gives out on me just to see if I can function in a modern society without one because it does seem that wherever I look they’re talking about this app that you need to get to to use this and and it does seem that apps are integrating their way deeper and deeper into our common you know common everyday mechanics of life which worries me it worries me because we’re becoming ever dependent on Google and there are a number of reasons why we might want to do giggle but for me at this stage I want to do Google just because I want to prove that we can I want to believe I want to know that we have a choice that we have a choice whether or not we let this company into our lives Google didn’t invent the internet they didn’t do anything close they invented very very few things but they have built on top of a lot and they have sunk their claws in deep and it’s not just Android but with a MP now I don’t know if you’re familiar with a MP I’ve actually forgotten the initialism of a MP but a MP is this new format for mobile web pages that are cached on Google servers that are dear to a number of criteria much of this criteria is just outlining stuff that you can’t include in your website idea of slimming down a website so that it conforms to Google standards Google are trying to outline a very specific google standard for mobile pages and to reward people for conforming to this format they’re going to list those web pages higher up on their Google search results this is an outright takeover of the open web as we see it and I want to know that we don’t have to go along with this and it’s getting more and more evident to me the Google is becoming a company that we can’t get away from regardless of how ethical they are regardless of how they operate regardless of how convenient or efficient they are we get into a world of trouble when we paint ourselves into such a corner that we cannot function without this one company’s permission without the Dearing to this one company’s end-user License Agreement without a dear into their privacy policies code of conduct best practices workflow anything they’re usurping our very culture and it terrifies me regardless of their best intentions regardless of what they want to do but we know what they want to do they’re a company they want to make money but here’s the thing companies don’t operate the way that they did 50 years ago a company like Google will happily operate at a loss so that other companies cannot compete its anti-competitive measures and I think the key example is YouTube YouTube operates at a loss and you see Google adding in new features higher resolutions higher frame rates but they’re still operating at a loss they’re not making cuts they’re not shrinking their company they are growing at a loss and they’re growing at a loss because they have the monopoly on online video and that monopoly in and of itself is worth more than money at least in the short term because the longer they can operate at this loss the longer they can operate providing this level of convenience to everyone on the world everyone in the world rather the longer no other company can compete with them they can’t even look to competing with them because most companies do have to turn a profit and for some reason because of Google’s power they don’t not in this Avenue not in this regard so they’re pushing and bullying other other companies out of the market they’re not even letting them compete and they will pay a very hefty price to allow that to happen and if they’ll do it on video they’ll do it anywhere else as well it’s not an ethical business practice and we’ve seen other companies do it before but we’ve not seen companies do it on the scale of Google we can’t let them take over the Internet and that might be reason enough to pick up an Apple firm now full disclosure I’ve never used an Apple phone I don’t know the first thing about using an iPhone or iOS and I’m unlikely to anytime soon but maybe because I can’t afford something doesn’t mean that I have to pay for it with my rights that’s just an idle thought on the situation and I don’t a sound too dire I’d also don’t want to sound like an absolutist as well because a lot of the time people might even mock me a little bit for trying to do GLE an Android phone but just because we are compelled or forced or pressured or persuaded to let Google capture a small part of our digital lives does not mean we have to submit to we think that they put in front of us we can withhold we can hold out as long as possible as much as possible and that’s what I intend to do but then again you know I’m far from a perfect individual I’m far from a good role model in this regard but I don’t know it’s difficult anyway I’m gonna crack on with point two of this email Windows versus Linux on the desktop now this is a big one right so I’m gonna go back to rereading the email now this is a big one I’ve been a unix linux admin for 20 plus years so I do have a lot of knowledge on this I even ran Ubuntu Marte is my only desktop at home for two years but here’s the kicker I tended to question my choice of distro and even just desktop environment way too much it was not that I was dissatisfied with the initial one I just found that the plethora of choices made me constantly ask if I made the right choice or if I should try out XYZ distribution of environment I wasted a lot of time thinking about this currently I went back to Windows mostly to escape having to make all the choices do you think it’ll be possible for techies like us just to simply choose one distro or desktop environment and then leave it be I know you talked about similar things about your own setup a few times how do you cope with this as I was never in a place where stuff didn’t work yeah so I am fortunate enough to find myself in in a place where everything that I need to get working works now and if it doesn’t I am equipped with the tools to know where to look and I think when it comes to working out problems with Linux distributions the real sort of skills that are most valuable are knowing where to look when something goes wrong it’s easy to say how user-friendly Linux is and it is it’s a very user friendly operate system I’m thinking specifically now of Ubuntu Ubuntu Marte and the Linux Mint distros ones that are designed for most people just to pick up in news and I say this because I’ve introduced people to Linux before who in non-technical users and usually it comes in the form of people wanting to well sometimes well people people come to me and they’ll ask advice on buying a new computer and I’ll ask them a few questions about what they’ve currently got and then I’ll put forward the proposition of rather than splashing out on a new computer why not try reviving it with with a Linux distribution it will make it run faster and it might give you a few more years out of it and that’s usually enough to to sell people people don’t like splashing out hundreds of pounds on a new computer when there is a possibility that they can get by with something that doesn’t cost anything at all and a lot of people who who I make this sale to generally only need a web browser and maybe a word processor Skype Dropbox you know the basics things that are easily and readily available on Linux so that’s the sell that I make and and the destroy that I usually sell them is Ubuntu Marte no bunting Marte it’s customizable to the point where you can fashion it so that it looks enough like windows but it has the widespread support of a of a community and it’s in my experience works reliably I know there will be some people to disagree but I can only speak to my experience on this one so that’s where I go that is my mistake and that’s what I put in front of people and they’re usually generally pretty happy with that so as techie people that we can’t make our choices well I certainly district hop and I certainly see greener grass on the other side I’m running Manjaro and it was Manjaro KDE but I took off KDE and fried Marte I like KZ but I think I prefer martín it’s as simple as that but they’re both incredible desktop environments and switching them out was it’s not the cleanest thing because they’re significantly different in terms of the software beneath them but I managed to do it but I even still look across that the distribution like soulless it’s a rolling distribution it’s designed to be easy to use the budgie desktop environment looks absolutely wonderful and I’ve tried it before and it does and with all of these flat packs and app images and snaps and and it seems that solace and I key at solace in particular that seems to be the sort of the figurehead of it all puts a lot of work into getting things like this working I gotta say that solace looks like an incredibly attractive prospect even though Manjaro does everything that I want it has all that up-to-date software and so yeah I absolutely 100% suffer the same crisis of choice so I have think I’ve actually considered running just plain vanila Ubuntu on my desktop at home because that’s the that tends to be the go-to Linux desktop for people coming over from Windows it’s the most common one it’s you know as it currently stands it’s the de-facto Desktop Linux distribution so learning how to use it I haven’t even done a review of vanillin 2 on my channel for that for the latest one and it looks nice so it looks wonderful and the gnome desktop I think does look promising I like the idea that they’ve simplified it to the point where it’s now very like he’s very user friendly the thing is with the Marte desktop wonderful desktop very customizable could be quite intimidating to to people that have no interesting customizability not everyone I think most people don’t want to customize their desktops to the level that the dust techy Linux nerds do so I think Noma I’ve got a got something of a valuable idea and I like the fact that there is one desktop environment that has a standard Desktop paradigm that isn’t designed to be too customizable yeah you can do a lot with plugins and what-have-you but there is a standard gnome layout which a lot of thought and work has gone into it and it looks nice and if you see what what black pop RS have done with it as well it looks it looks wonderful in that regard as well so all this waffling seems to indicate that I’m incredibly on the same page is humid yes that’s how I do I do i am tormented by choices and this is both a good thing and a bad thing it’s a good thing because it gives us the freedom to to build a desktop we want and and a Linux distribution at the end of the day it’s just a collection of software that’s that’s all it is it’s a library of software that’s put together you know it’s sewn together in a loving way but that’s really at the end of the day it’s someone’s chosen the kernel someone’s todos in the desktop environment someone’s chosen you know the subsequent apps and office utilities the go on top of that package management software centers all this kind of stuff so even though there’s a there’s a grand choice that we have here most of these choices are just rearrangements of software that we’re already familiar with but there is an advantage which I think overrules everything and that is the choice because although nowadays most on many Linux distributions are very very similar in their technical makeup it is incredibly worthwhile to consider the importance of where they come from their origin so what I mean by that is that even though Linux distributions are nowadays rather compatible with each other and they are of a similar build there might be differences in the package versioning or how they’re updated and all this kind of stuff but you can make – you know – two distributions almost to call in their workflow if that’s something that you choose to do however there is a high degree of importance in the origins of these distributions maybe there is a company that puts together a Linux distribution but you don’t like the company you don’t trust the company maybe for example you prefer to be part of a community that builds software in a particular way so for example with Manjaro Manjaro is it’s a distribution that is built for its community and and it serves that community very very well the Mandara community are incredibly proud and incredibly happy with what they’ve put together and of course they should be it’s a wonderful distribution but not all distributions should be community built some might benefit from having the backing of a company like it one – and canonical or system76 and pop OS so depending on all of those factors the the political and business factors behind a distribution they also matter so there’s more to it than just the end workflow now I appreciate that the overwhelming majority of computer users probably don’t care but it’s no less important I mean certain companies or certain communities can offer better support than others as well and that certainly is going to help you at times of crisis but then for those of us that are quite comfortable working on Linux who might not necessarily require the same level of support maybe that choice of distribution is more arbitrary so yes I do suffer the same torment as you with having a huge plethora of wonderful choices on the Linux desktop and I don’t think I’ll ever settle down but I think I can currently live with the situation if I wanted to have one distribution to end them all I would just consider vanilla Ubuntu and there’s a part of me that wants to give vanilla Ubuntu a good run especially the 1804 bill just to see if that is a distribution that you know it’s it’s well known it’s you know a lot of people when they think of Linux they think of a bun too and and it and it’d be nice to to see what you know to experience what people new to Linux and people that get put onto a bun too might also experience as well in terms of desktop environments I do tend to walk towards or tend to drift towards Marty a part of that is because I mean I remember being very happy with the gnome to desktop back in the day so a lot of it is is just being comfortable with what you’re familiar with and being comfortable with the customizations of it as well I really like that with Marty it’s reasonably trivial to install and switch out window managers for example so if I want some awkward hardware and I see some screen tearing I might try a different try different window manager and and and you know or if I’m on a on a machine that I want to save system resources on then it’s rather trivial to turn off compositing you know compositing window manager scale it down to something significantly more lightweight but then again of course you look to KDE plasma and and I ran this on my my triton netbook triton laptop here which is generally considered them entry-level model although it’s still not – not too shabby but but boy KDE man they’ve that works on a lot of hardware – now so but yeah I think I think with me I’ve just read I’ve just gotten into certain habits now and certain can you know certain ways of thinking that I I’m quite comfortably the Marte desktop but will I settle on the distribution myself probably not no I I too am a wanderer but I don’t think I’ll be going to Windows for it because I do know that at the end of the day if I wanted just to pick her I could just put Linux Mint on there and I know that I’d be happy so that would be love yeah and of course linux mint comes with a with the MARTA version but I didn’t like the cinnamon desktop as well so I apologize for the wofully and in you call it inconclusive answers but I feel that I feel very much on the same page as as your your quandary Xand I feel like I I can empathize greatly with you so this is the final and third part of the email and this this is an easy one what do you use to take notes on your computer due to my work I have become very much addicted to OneNote and I have not found any good alternative on Linux oh man I’ve gone old-school with this one right so I am really happy with my note-taking workflow now truth be told I actually take a lot of notes with the good old fashioned pen and paper I’ve got a I’ve actually got the show notes written down on a little notepad here so when it comes to notes that that I only want to keep around for a short duration I do actually just bite the bullet and write them down on it on a notepad it’s reliable it’s secure it’s convenient but when it comes to something more technical my digital solution I do have a digital solution I use a text file a dot txt file and I use sync thing to synchronize that text file across all of my devices my phone my laptop my desktop in a special sync folder and it’s as simple as that I have an app on my phone that is called editor it’s from the f-droid store and I think I use the default text editor which i think is Plumer in martinez oh that’s that’s what I’ll be using but cait on KDE plasma is wonderful as well and I think G edits pretty wonderful too we’ve got a we’ve got a great choice of text editors there but it doesn’t matter because there is a there’s a very sincere place in my heart for plain text no matter where I go you know with our file form and I do a lot of secretarial work as part of my my freelance gigs so I do use office suites and I do use word processors I use the advanced tools on word processors as well but I regularly come across people who can’t read file type a or have trouble with file type B oh no the fonts aren’t coming across properly oh the you know the the images have moved around because I’ve tried to open a word document on LibreOffice and then or I’ve tried to open you know LibreOffice on word and so forth and you know for the most basic of documents it seems generally fine if you sort of abide by the the good practices of a of a word processor and of course you can export you can export a lot of documents as a PDF and the LibreOffice PDF exporter is really wonderful inners has helped me out a lot of times because with the PDF you can embed your fonts into it you can embed your images to it and you can embed the layout to it just the way that you like it and that’s all wonderful but you just can’t beat the simplicity of plain text ya just can’t truth be told I’d like to see markdown become a bit more widespread I think it’d be wonderful if you could edit markdown in libreoffice the same way that you would with any other format or that you could just you know arbitrarily open a a markdown file in a browser or in you know in a word processor or anything like that but it does seem that markdown still only exists within this little technical corner of you know the digital world I think that’s a little bit of a problem because it’s it’s again it is beauty and simplicity but at least with markdown it’s human readable in plain text format so I think plain text I always try and do documents in plain text when I have the option to do so because that simplicity it’s all you need and I think it’s wonderful and and also don’t forget the file size you know it seems nowadays that file size has taken a backseat of all things important but having a document there’s like less than 20 kilobytes is it’s pretty wonderful to me I think so simplicity I think it’s it’s underrated you know so so thank you email the email comes from Jorgen or Yorkin is that how I pronounce it I won’t give you surname because I don’t think although I did ask you as to whether or not I could read your email on the show I I don’t know how private you wish to remain so all are all on the side of that but but thank you your again for for such an insightful email and one that hits really close to my heart because I I i think very much the same way that you do here so so thank you okay so now we arrived to another section of the show this is one that appears in many a Linux and tech podcast and that’s an app pick because you know what is it tech podcast without an app pick one of the one of the difficulties of of Linux is is discovering software really now the software some centers have come a long way since I started using Linux and I do quite enjoy browsing them but there are always hidden gems and I spend a lot of time on on mastodons as you guys know and if you want to follow me I’m Chris we’re at Linux rocks dot online but I’ll make sure the contact details go out with the podcast but like there are always people asking for the best app for this or the best app for that and it always reminds me whenever people ask such a question that one of the big hurdles of free and open source software is is our marketing department the thing is with big companies they spend millions if not billions on marketing I mean what’s the point in having a wonderful piece of software if only a small handful of people are going to use it the open-source world does not have as much money as these big companies and when it does come to working out where to spend money on whether or not it comes to you know paying your developers or sticking it into a marketing budget I mean it does make sense for that money to go to the developers developers in the open source world and the free software will spend so much of their time which is incredibly valuable to make the digital world a better place that I think at every turn we should try and reward them for that sacrifice that they make but you know the you know the free software world does not have much or does not put marketing very highly on its on its list of priorities we rely very much on word-of-mouth so here are the words from my mouth in regards to today’s app pick today’s app pick speaking of mastodons is actually total total total is a desktop mastodons app that is not based on electron because I know there’s you know as much as I think electron is it is good because it’s it’s it makes cross-platform app development a lot easier native apps of course we’ll always have that you know will always will always be preferable really won’t they you know electron apps are convenient but but native apps crafted with love for the for the Linux world and for the lens distributions so yeah tootle available through the flat hub flat pack app store yeah I’m gonna call it an app store I know it’s probably more of an app library or or a software Center or something like that app store implies that you pay for it or you know it but but but when you say app still people know what you mean by App Store and it’s available through the flat hub App Store lightning-fast mastered on client can support multiple accounts works wonderfully and and I highly recommend if you live you’re looking for a native desktop application to to compose your status updates for mastodons it’s something I use it’s something that I do quite enjoy and and it’s something that I feel it just feels really well-crafted so definitely worth checking out if you want a desktop client for mastodons so I must say on the note of of flat packs they I’ve got to say they’ve really enamored me over the past few months and I’m really you know I quite like these these new you know this new push to try and make applications more readily available on more Linux distributions because then it makes it easier to switch from distributions it makes the differences between distributions smaller and you know it’ll it just gives you more more choice more freedom and I think that or at least it seems that it also takes some of the weight off developers having to navigate the industry politics of getting their app in the you know in the repositories of app of distributions or or even just learning how to package for multiple distributions when you can just release your application as a flat pack and hit the you know the the full audience of of the Linux world which is which is wonderful and and I’ve been doing that you know I’ve been trying out a lot of flat packs and there’s a there’s also degree of convenience for example I have you know I do a fair number of online meetings using Skype and no surprise to to hear that I do not like you in Skype it’s not a particularly it’s not a program line fond of using but to have it conveniently wrapped up in a flat-pack that I can just pull down and you know I could and and just as easy to uninstall it makes me feel that I’m much less tied to it that it’s that it’s you know it’s sandbox and not a part of my integrated system which allows me to keep my core system clean with free choice of apps on top of that so yeah flat packs they just seemed a better deal for developers a better deal for the end user more apps on more platforms and it’s and it’s all wonderful and I do like how the flat flat packs have um you know they have a decentralized nature now we do have flat hub which is sort of the the de facto main store and I think that it is important to get flat packs off the ground to have that sort of central place but I like the fact that they’ve that it’s that it’s a firm mission to not have flat hub be or have the monopoly on the distribution of apps and that you can see that throughout throughout how you know you manage the the applications and how easy it is to add new flat-pack repositories to it in general just having used them more and more over the past few months on on Manjaro and and on on Ubuntu and other distributions as well I have to say that that this is a great example of how far Linux has come since I started using it as my primary operating system ten years ago so that’s about ten years ago now yeah maybe ten oh maybe more like eleven or twelve actually crikey right I I’m feeling old man I’m feeling bit old anyway I’m gonna wrap up with the final segment of today’s podcast which is just the meta stuff what is this what is this podcast what’s it about well I’ve always do a podcast and I’ve always had certain hurdles doing a lot of freelance work which changes in volume but basically the amount freelance work I does is to make up to make up my earnings short of what YouTube hands out and there was a time a few years ago where it looked like YouTube was was in a much healthier state when it came to monetization than it is today now it seems to be a shell of its its former self so I have to do a fair amount of a freelance work of basically gig economy work now to make up the the wage difference so and and one of the side effects of that is is a schedule is having a schedule it’s it’s it’s it’s not like I have a nine-to-five that I clock in so being able to plan anything with with a degree of regularity has always been difficult but I think my desire to actually bring out a podcast now has sort of superseded that and you know it’s no secret that YouTube has been throwing its creators to the walls of late you know we’ve seen monetization crumble really in terms of the earnings that we get back we we still haven’t really recovered from the ad pocalypse is I know people don’t talk about it as much now because people have just learned to live with it one way or the other and I’ve got to say you know it’s not sort of just looking at myself here but I gotta say that watching so many content creators i watch a lot of youtube it’s my primary form of entertainment and watch so many of my content creators not only get burn out but just just decide that to go elsewhere or to not you know to stop making videos because YouTube has created such a hostile environment here has has really has really disappointed me it really has and to watch so many people who I used to enjoy the content off just flee the platform you know I don’t know what to tell you it’s it’s it’s just pointing to say the lease there are other words that I’d use but I don’t want to I don’t want to be overly dramatic I guess so it’s you know it’s it’s not just myself here it’s just a sorry state of affairs all round so you know you see people move over to twitch but twitch on any better they really aren’t it’s a matter of you know do a bit on YouTube do a bit on twitch spread yourself around don’t put your eggs in one basket but you just end up with two crappy baskets then don’t you and so I consider Amazon to be a I don’t know if I could say them to be as what they’re as bad as Google they’re as bad as Google maybe in different ways so so so I thought I might give podcasting a go here as an attempt to try and to try and find something else to try and find another avenue here I’ve heard from a lot of people that podcasts are taking off like crazy that they’re you know something that you can listen to when you’re playing a game or doing something else and and that’s certainly how how I enjoy podcasts or maybe on a commute or something to that effect it’s also nice to have long-form content I’ve always had longer than usual YouTube videos and and it’s always you know I’ve always broken away from the status quo in that regards by having longer than usual videos but but the format of my videos I think seems to fit a podcast format quite well now I’m going to be doing ten pilot episodes to see how this goes because one of the intimidating things about having a podcast is just the you know you see a sea before you of you know infinite possibilities of infinite choices many of which are not great choices so I’m gonna do 10 and I’m gonna make the best best go of these 10 pilot podcasts that I can and after these 10 I’m gonna re-evaluate the situation to see you know what I can do so I’m gonna be making you know I’m gonna be trying maybe different formats or what have you I’m you’re trying you know to see what I can do here so it’s gonna it might be a bit of a rough start I might be more wofully and I’m gonna aim for these podcasts to be between 30 minutes and an hour long I quite like the idea of a 30 minute podcast because one of my favorite podcasts is the abun 2 podcast and they do it for about half an hour and that’s great because that’s a that’s a lunchtime break podcast you can listen to it in your lunch and it’s short it’s convenient it’s punch into that we’re punchy to the point on my podcast ain’t gonna be punchy I can guarantee you that but but that’s a good length but but also so is an hour so I might be trying and also I don’t necessarily want to restrict the length to an arbitrary limit either so so I’m gonna sort of try and keep it between 30 and 60 minutes and see where I go from that if it feels more natural to round it off for 60 then I’ll do that but I’m not going to but I’m not going to sort of push artificially you know more so than 30 a few of you have asked me about guests and co-hosts and that kind of thing but as I sort of alluded to earlier my schedule is is so up and down sort of on an almost on an ongoing basis that I couldn’t ever commit to it’s very difficult to commit to to scheduling times when I’ve got to schedule so much other stuff around it so it wouldn’t be fair on on other people to sort of drag them into this scheduling you know scheduling nightmare that I exist within so I might have the occasional guest on but it won’t be regular co-hosts and I’ve I’ve thought you know I’ve got a few potential guests in mind but they aren’t necessarily going to be Linux II people it might be people who who test us outside of our comfort zone who who might be experiencing the Linux community from an cider perspective or rum you know and and you know it doesn’t necessarily have to always be Linux tech I I understand that there are a fair number of Windows users that enjoy listening to my content and I don’t want to to to exclude them so so there is is that in regards to feedback please feel free to email me I have a public email address its contact – Chris at post EO net I’ll make sure that goes out of course with the with the with the podcast and of course Mastodon is it’s somewhere that you can always catch me as well so when it when it when I came to look at hosting this podcast I was met with a sea of options but I must admit with these 10 pilot episodes going in for a long plan on on one of the podcast services is is is not something that I’m ready to commit to just yet because of course a lot of these podcast hosts tell charge you know somewhere between five American dollars to ten American dollars a month and and I know that that’s probably not a lot of money to to a lot of people but for something that that I intend to keep on going it’s it’s certainly you know it’s it’s it’s a no it’s a significant amount of made to me I I you know I it’s no secret that I live my life on a shoestring budget and and to to try out these ten pilot episodes on on on a paid service just just now is is a bit of a commitment that I don’t think I can put myself into until I know that this podcast is is likely to be a little bit more successful however I have decided I’m going to put the the mp3 files for this on my patreon page patreon.com/lenguin for example a listening so and maybe that shouldn’t be a metric that I measure maybe I should put this podcast together for for the love of doing it and for the benefit of whoever it could benefit so so there’s that but at least with with patreon they let you host it as an mp3 they let you download it there is an RSS feed with it and I could pass that RSS feed through to a external website or what have you but but if I just make the RSS feed available and point people to the patreon page I’m hoping that will be enough and also because this this podcast is is patreon funded I suppose it it sort of makes sense in that regard as well so as it currently stands in regards to that I I’m gonna I’m gonna think of this podcast as patreon fund it is the people who have been ever so kind and generous to support me through patreon even though they certainly didn’t have to I don’t have tears I don’t have Membership Rewards I don’t have anything like that and and that is a choice but it also does reduce the incentive to contribute to the patreon so this podcast is a specific thank you to those people who have decided to help me when they didn’t have to that’s something that I have trouble expressing but though that means the world to me means more it means more than I can I can put in words it genuinely does so so I think this for the 10 pilot episodes will have a happy home on patreon it’s a company that you know I’ve seen operate through you know since it’s since its creation and I know that a lot of people to criticize it but as far as companies of that type go I think they’re they’re really quite good they listen to feedback when they’ve made mistakes before they provide a pretty decent service and and they provide hosting for for podcasts and and I think that’s that’s where all we’re all and um if you do want to support this podcast then please yeah do you feel free to to help out on on patreon I don’t you know I don’t need to tell you that YouTube is throwing us to the walls I’ve probably I’ve said it about three times already in this in this very same podcast but but if you do want to support this podcast it’s well you guys know what to do anyway I think I’m gonna wrap up this is the first episode and boy has it been a wofully one I’m gonna try and edit it down a little bit I’m gonna be using audacity for those of you that wondering well dust is wonderful because it allows you to you know compress the file it does audio compression and and I’m gonna be releasing as I’m an mp3 because I have released audio broadcasters Oh Gigi formats before however not everyone’s podcast players can support that and to put out one you know one file an mp3 now is a freer format than it used to be so so I’m going to I’m gonna choose choose that for the time being if you do have any feedback or suggestions on the particular format I’m always while my inbox is always open my method on account is always open and and yeah so thank you guys for watching thank you for listening and and until next time should I this is a book this is a strange time to bring up should I have a different outro I usually sign off with Ivan Chris we’re only been awesome but I could incorporate the name of the show again I’ve been Chris where you’ve been awesome and this is a podcast from the technical warehouse with your host Chris where Oh you

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