Letters

Readers sound off.

The November 2001 issue of LJ arrived in the mail yesterday, and I was surprised to see on page 56 a photo of a bicycle! But after thinking about it, I thought, if any bicycle is appropriate for a Linux magazine, the Bike Friday is it. It is a quality product, the support is superlative, and it can do so many things that outsiders don't expect. And yes, I'm talking about the bicycle—and Linux. See, a perfect match! Incidentally, one of those things that the Bike Friday bicycles can do is fold. It's not mentioned in the article, but one of their biggest attractions is transporting them in airline-sized suitcases, which then can be towed behind the bicycle as a trailer.

—Larry Varney

Palm Comments

I just received your November 2001 issue, and I'm glad to see an article covering the topic of using a Palm device to talk to one's Linux box. This is a useful project that helps to prove that Linux is more than ready for the desktop, yet has not gotten the attention it deserves.

However, there are some problems with Coppieters' and Velghe's otherwise useful article. First was their use of pilot-link 0.9.3, which is an old release, and referring users to the old FTP site at Ryerson University. Pilot-link is currently at release level 0.9.5, and the source code for this can be found at www.pilot-link.org. I would also like to take the time to single out David A. Desrosier, who picked up this project two years ago and has kept it alive. Currently he is helping to add support for USB to pilot-link for the next release. And should a reader currently need to use USB to talk to her/his Palm device, there is ColdSync, which can be found at www.ooblick.com/software/coldsync.

I invite your readers who are interested in current developments with Linux and PDAs using the Palm OS to subscribe to the pilot-unix mailing list at pilot-unix@hcirisc.cs.birmington.edu. Besides working on USB support, work has begun to enable the protocol that underlies the PalmPix graphics viewer so that users can load images from their Linux box and view them on their Palm device.

—Geoffrey Burling

Some Ultimate Advice

In your article “The Ultimate Linux Box 2001: How to Design Your Dream Machine” (unabridged web version, available at /article/5563), you wrote:

The SB Live! seemed to work with the stock emu10k1.o sound module in Red Hat 7.1, but as it turns out it can't run the earphone-out jack on the LiveDrive.

Actually, it can—it just isn't set up to do so by default. I own one of these cards, a good pair of headphones, and a cheap pair of speakers, so I had reason to look into this. Here's how I got it working. First, download the drivers from opensource.creative.com:

cvs -d ':pserver:cvsguest@opensource.creative.com:/usr/local/cvsroot' login
[use the password 'cvsguest']
cvs -d ':pserver:cvsguest@opensource.creative.com:/usr/local/cvsroot' co emu10k1
Everything there is under the GPL and changes here get folded into the kernel tree, so there's no real point using this driver over the kernel one. However, there are some utilities included that let you (among other things) enable different inputs/outputs. So compile and install their emu10k1.o if you want, but there's no need to. What we're after is make tools. This gives you all sorts of tools for doing fancy things with the card, most of which I don't understand. The only one you need to get the headphones working is emu-dspmgr, located in the utils/mixer directory. With it, you can pipe your choice of inputs to your choice of outputs, e.g.:
emu-dspmgr -a'Pcm L:Phones L' emu-dspmgr
-a'Pcm R:Phones R' emu-dspmgr
-a'CD-Spdif L:Phones L'
emu-dspmgr
-a'CD-Spdif R:Phones R'
--Andrew Bishop

Monarch Impostor?

Regarding your latest issue with the front cover depicting the “Ultimate Linux Box”, a computer reseller called Monarch Computer at www.monarchcomputer.com is claiming that their product is this box. They've even gone so far as to modify an image of the LJ cover to put their own company's name on the image; the image on their web site reads “Linux Journal Ultimate Linux Box Monarch Computer Systems”. According to the article, it was another hardware vendor (Los Alamos Computers) that helped put the effort into designing and building this system. So if anybody should get credit by way of business, it should be those guys. This seems very sleazy.

—Mark Travis

Mark, if you look carefully at the article, you will see that there were two boxes built—one by Los Alamos for Eric Raymond and another by Monarch for LJ Technical Editor Don Marti. It actually was Monarch's box that appeared on the cover.

—Editor

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