Monthly Archives: May 2008

Ubuntu Bliss… VirtualBox with USB support…

I could not be happier.  I am writing this post from within my Hardy Heron install while VirtualBox churns away behind my firefox window.  Churning away at what?  Churning away with Windows XP, which is busy flashing my X-ROM GameBoy Advance cart with some of my archived gameboy ROMS…

Thanks to the USB support provided with the PUEL version of VirtualBox, I am once again able to flash my carts with my backed up games for pending road trips – a 5 day excursion to PCB in this instance…  Also, in the spirit of giving credit where credit due, a very informative post over at ubuntu-unleashed.com lead me through the steps to get it all  up and running.. For the sake of indexed information, I will post my consolodated instruction set for the process for any who may stumble here because of this post…

Installing Sun’s VirtualBox with USB support in Hardy Heron

  • Download VirtualBox PUEL Binaries from http://www.virtualbox.org/wiki/Downloads
  • Install downloaded VirtualBox DEB
  • Add user to vboxusers
  • Edit /etc/init.d/mountdevsubfs.sh (uncomment last 4 lines) :

#Magic to make /proc/bus/usb work
mkdir -p /dev/bus/usb/.usbfs
domount usbfs “” /dev/bus/usb/.usbfs -obusmode=0700,devmode=0600,listmode=0644
ln -s .usbfs/devices /dev/bus/usb/devices
mount –rbind /dev/bus/usb /proc/bus/usb

  • Check /etc/group for user and group ID(grep vbox /etc/group)

Example: vboxusers:x:123:eznet

  • Edit fstab (etc/fstab) by appending the following (note group id):

## usbfs is the USB group in fstab file:
none /proc/bus/usb usbfs devgid=123,devmode=664 0 0

  • edit /etc/init.d/mountkernfs.sh – add following ABOVE the line: “# Mount spufs, if Cell Broadband processor is detected” :

## Mount the usbfs for use with Virtual Box
domount usbfs usbdevfs /proc/bus/usb -onoexec,nosuid,nodev,devgid=123,devmode=664

  • Reboot
  • Load up VirtualBox (Applications->System Tools->Sun xVM VirtualBox)
  • Install WindowsXP in virtual machine (not explained here)
  • After system is fully installed, configure VirtualBox to your needs
  • Add USB device support to VirtualBox by clicking ‘Settings’ while virtual machine is powered off
  • Click ‘USB’ from settings in left panel
  • Enable USB and USB 2.0 Controllers
  • Add Filter From Device (ALT-INS) and select your device (if not named, enter lsusb from shell and google vendor and product ids – something like this: lsusb shows 4542:4144, then google vid 4542 pid 4144) and click OK
  • Boot up XP and hopefully all will be well for you as it was for me!

Now I am off to try out the iPod support 🙂

Matt

Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull : Sneak Peak

I will try to discuss this without revealing too much about the story, so I will refrain from specifics and will speak generically where I feel a spoiler risk is possible.

So, I was lucky enough to snag a couple sneak preview tickets for the Wednesday night showing of the new Indiana Jones movie (Yea, I watched it on the 20th – be envious).  Having not seen Indiana in about a dozen years or so, I didn’t quite know what to expect – I knew what I wanted to expect, but these days you can’t ever really tell if it is a genuine attempt at carrying on the legacy or a cheap stab at some new cash from the nostalgia of those present for the last installment of the Indiana story.  To make a long story short, I was not disappointed – if anything, I was extremely happy to see some old friends – aka Indiana Jones 🙂

First, the Nazi theme is continued on in Kingdom of the Crystal Skull.  This at first struck me as feeling a bit distant and hard to relate to since so much time has passed since the movies of the 80s where the Nazis were regularly featured bad guys.  Admittedly, this ‘distant’ feeling quickly passed as the Nazis assumed their classic role of villain.  Note: I use ‘classic’ instead of “typical” because there is a overall feeling of ‘classic’ throughout this movie – even when it is something that has been done to death, it is pulled off in this Indiana installment without leaving the bitter taste of “played-out” in your mouth.

I did get a deja-vu feeling on part of the storyline in regards to the Nazis.  Although it was small, and I do not want to spoil too much, we will just say that those crazy Nazis are still hunting the supernatural power that will give them the upper hand against the rest of the world.  Unlike Hellboy, the supernatural ‘source’ was not hell spawn, but instead was a bit more ‘other worldly’…  This was an element that did seem a bit out of place from the classic Indy story, but I guess in reality it is no more of a stretch than was the case with the Last Crusade.  Spielberg and Lucas have a way of taking something conceptually hoaxy and showing (creating) the historic relevance – in essence, making the far fetched seem not so far fetched.

A fun side to the movie was the fact that I could not help but feel the same emotions and feelings about the storyline and its characters as I did with the original Indiana movies.  The story, in CLASSIC form, is a non-stop action-heavy “guns a blazin’” chase.  Again, “classic” pretty well describes the feeling of this movie.  From one sketchy situation to the next, Indiana and his crew are dodging everyone from Nazis to Aztecs – bullets (and poisonous spears) whizzing past the entire time.  This is something that I feel is often times not executed very well in most modern movies, but was carried off very well in Kingdom of the Crystal Skull.  Again, this was nice: feeling the sentiments I now associate with nostalgia – without viewing something from the past.  There was a warm feeling of comfort – something new and interesting that also encompasses characteristics that make you feel as if you already know it.

In typical Indiana form, riddles, puzzles, treasure hunts and myth are pieced together with historic fact to create a story that is creatively novel while being comfortable simultaneously.  Also throughout the film, there are “winks and nods” to the previous Jones movies for anyone with an observative eye.  All in all, I would rate this a 9 out of 10.  Harrison Ford did an excellent job once again as Indiana Jones – the talk of his age are unmerited (lets see you beotches do your own stunts… cause he did).  Admittedly, Sean Connery was slightly missed, but at least they threw a picture in there.  I felt Shia LaBeof did a great job walking along side the Giant that is Harrison Ford and also was set up in a prime position to carry out the Jones legacy (I will not elaborate on that any further).  Mrs. Karen Allen also did her character justice, as well as added much to the classic air of this newest Indiana installment by providing a spark from the past.  Also, Mrs. Cate Blanchett was a awesome nazi – although not a flattering character, there is something sexy about a woman who can handle a sword – albeit a Nazi woman with a sword.

So, again, in re-recap:  Go see it.  Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull is a nice throwback to simpler times.  The puzzles and plot do not tease you too much or make you think too hard – basically, it is just fun to watch the story unfold and play out.  You will get a new story with a few new players – all wrapped in the warmth of childhood and familiarity – unless you were born after 1989, in which case “you pesky kids just don’t understand and likely never will!”

Political “Science”…

Admittedly, I am skeptical of the ‘definitive semantics’ line of thought in relation to political science – with a system so largely contingent on the human condition, political theory based on (historic) observations are seemingly approximations based on the psychological condition of populous of the time – largely contingent on the era and the state of a all of the ‘states’ and their relative ranking, respectively.  A dynamic, free forming and constantly redefining system, that, although does have seeming accurate applicable approximations, is not ‘statically typed’ or defined – concepts and driving forces are merely contextually relevant. Far more observational theory than evidential science.
Just as I do not feel that psychology is a classic science, I also do not feel political science to be a science in the classical static sense.  Clearly observational approximations are handy, and do aid a great deal in conceptual explanation and comprehension, but are limited to that domain – conceptual, contextual, and non-definitive; to be considered for sure, but only in careful consideration of its relative nature and limited context.