Managing contacts and calendar

I am always looking for a good solution (not a software, but a solution) to manage all my contacts and calendar. Actually I separate both of them, even they are under PIM (personal information management).

I was using an excel file to manage all my contacts. But we know, a file is different from an application, the interface is not usable, and I had the difficulty to find the contacts that I want.

Then, I tried to use EssentialPIM (freeware) to manage all my contacts. Yes, this is really a good solution, including the contacts with contact number only. Besides that, I can also use the task and calendar. However, the task and the calendar are not good enough to solve my problem, because I need to run EssentialPIM and check the calendar or task manually.

Because of the calendar and task problems, I switched to Rainlendar. This is very good, because it shows everything about calendar and task on the desktop. Useful to remind me to do the tasks.

The next problem of EssentialPIM is the email. Since it is used for only contacts, when I want to email, I need to run it, copy the email address, and paste it. These are exhaustive, wasteful, and boring actions. Why don’t I switch to Thunderbird for all the contacts including email?

Now, since I have multiple computers, syncing is a big problem. Rainlendar’s calendar can be synced easily, but Thunderbird address book is different. So, to solve the syncing problem, the best way is using online service. Thus, to solve the calendar syncing problem, finally I use the Google Calendar. It is too good, because it can send email to remind the uncompleted task. To make me access Google Calendar more conveniently, I installed Lightning add-on for Thunderbird, and load the Google Calendar. Besides that, I use the Cache feature of Lightning, so that even I cannot access internet, I can still load the calendar from the cache. This is the best solution for me currently.

Now, the calendar is solved, but the contacts is the next problem. Because I didn’t manage the contacts online, thus all the contacts in the accounts like Google and Yahoo are very messy. I normally manage my contacts offline. Calendar can be shared among the applications because of the standard iCalendar format. But contacts are different. There are Google format CSV, Thunderbird LDIF, Outlook CSV, vCard, etc. This makes the import and export very difficult to preserve all the information.

I tried to use Thunderbird Google Contacts add-on to sync the contacts with Google. However, the result is not very satisfying. I cannot sync all the contacts with Google. Finally, I tried to use Zindus add-on for Thunderbird. Yes, this can sync very well, all the contacts are syncing correctly. As a result, I manage the contacts with Google. The best feature I like about Google is merge the duplicated contacts. Now, I can sync the contacts and calendar with all my devices.


Prayer Clock 1.0.0

Finally I release the Prayer Clock with version 1.0.0. For the internal engine, there is not much change. For the deployment, I tried to make several changes.

Firstly, I am using autotools (autoconf and automake) for the project, so that it is easier for me to maintain the project. Because this project targets for cross platform. Yes, I learnt quite a lot of things about autotools, really nice to use.

Secondly, I continue maintaining the Debian package. Actually, I target on Arch Linux, but I found that Debian and Arch Linux is binary compatible (for my project, I am not sure for others). So, I use Arch Linux to package it in Debian using dpkg. And I also make the PKGBUILD for Arch Linux package build. I choose Debian (not RPM), because previously I used Ubuntu. Besides that, I also follow the specification for the icon and desktop entry. As a result, after installation, we can run the application from the menu item (just like Windows start menu). Because of this deployment, I change the file hierarchy based on Linux/Unix, which I am not familiar about this before.

Thirdly, since I am developing this project primarily in Linux, but yet Windows is also widely used, so I use MinGW32 cross compiling environment. Yeah, this is really a great project, because I can cross compile my project targeted on Windows using Linux. Moreover, the result is a standalone executable application without DLLs dependencies. I still using NSIS to deploy the program.

So, whoever likes the source code (I don’t think so), now can download the source code tarball which is generated by autotools.

Portable version? Yeah. the program is still portable. For Linux, download the Debian package, and extract it, it is portable. But make sure to run the application from bin/ as the working directory, else cannot read the data files. For Windows, it is also same method, running the file from bin/ directory, but I don’t provide portable installation in NSIS, (I may consider this for next release). That is why I do not provide portable version in any more.

For the JPrayer Clock 1.0.0, I will not come out with it so soon since Prayer Clock (C++ version) fulfils my need. However, it is open source, anyone who likes it (but I don’t think so), just contribute.

The next plan for this project is to restructure the coding, because current one is quite messy.

Finally, I am proud of my new icon (I think so). Edited with GIMP. Great open source tool.

(Actually my next step is to continue with the game development which I am too slow.)

Prayer Clock icon

The theories (and concepts) I know about science

During my secondary school, I studied the science subjects: physics, chemistry, and biology.

The main theory I know about the physics is: Energy cannot be created or destroyed, it can only be transformed. Then I asked, where does energy come from? Is it existed in the beginning?

Then, about the chemistry, which studies about the matter. From this subject, I know an atom consists of proton, neutron, and electron. We can determine the element based on the number of protons. Then I asked, what determines the number of protons? There should be some attractive force, but where does this attractive force come from?

Then, about biology, my biology is the poorest among the the three subjects. The main theory I know about biology is the DNA. Even the plants and animals have a very distinctive biological system, both of their DNAs consist of same bases: A, C, G, T. And my text book written, this indicates that both plants and animals have a same creator.

Even these are the science subjects, these subjects helped me grow more in spirituality.

Are you in the bible? (Part 2)

Previously I asked, “Are you in the bible?” Right, most holy men and women suffered a lot as written in the bible. Since I mentioned those names, let me finish what were happened to those holy men and women.

Patriarch Joseph finally became an important man in Egypt, trusted by Pharaoh. During the great famine, he saved his own family and kinsmen.

David who wholeheartedly worked for Saul, but Saul wanted to murder him, at the later days, David became the king of Israel. Though he was persecuted by own son. But later years he died peacefully and his kingdom was succeeded by King Solomon.

Job, though all his children died suddenly, all his properties were taken in one night, at the end, he was blessed with more children and properties.

Samson was blinded and put imprisoned. But at the end, his power was recovered and killed his enemies and saved the Israelites.

Mordecai, though he and his kinsmen were threatened, at the end, all of them were saved by the help of Queen Esther, his adopted daughter.

Susanna though was accused, the Prophet Daniel was inspired and saved her from the hands of the elders. And justice was shown to them.
Tobit finally gained his sight by the help of the angel Raphael.

Here I don’t mention about the prophets, because most of them died like the Martyrs.

We can see that, though sufferings and sorrows were happened, there was something behind, which will bear the fruits when the time is coming.

GNOME3 still not satisfying

I am still currently using Xfce4. I tried GNOME3 sometimes after some updates released. However, GNOME3 is still not satisfying. There are a lot problems. The new interface can be learnt, but the problems are not the interface problem.

The following list is the problems I faced:

  1. ibus can be added to the notification area with ibus-gjs, but after installing ibus-gjs and restart GNOME3, ibus doesn’t start as expected.
  2. Toolbar problem. In evince (I haven’t tried others), if add a button to the toolbar, I cannot remove that button anymore.
  3. If the network connection is disabled, eg, Wired network is disabled, I cannot change the options. I can only change the options for those which is connected.
  4. When changing the options of Wired network for all users, there is no authentication prompt, thus, I cannot change any options.
  5. Keyboard shortcut problem with Windows key (Mod4). Cannot work properly.

The only feature I like in GNOME3 is the aero snap feature. But there is nothing more.

Are you in the bible?

Whoever read the bible will find that there are a lot of sorrowfulness within the bible stories. Yes, bible is for those who are poor, oppressed, sicks, and sinners. Because the world is full of injustice, through the Gospel (I mean good news), we found our faith and hope. The worldly people judge with outlook, pursue authorities and richness. That is why, the poor become poorer, the oppressed become more oppressed, the sicks are abandoned.

Are you in the bible? Patriarch Joseph was betrayed and sold by his own brothers, he was also thrown into jail though he was innocent. David, even he served King Saul wholeheartedly, yet Saul still wanted to murder him. At the later year, King David was even persecuted by his own son, Absalom. The prophets like Jeremiah were not accepted by their own people. Samson was betrayed by the woman he loved. Job was not understood by his own friends, his friends kept asking him to confess his sin, even his wife asked him to curse God in order to die. Mordecai was hated by Haman without any good reason, and Haman planned to kill Mordecai and all his kinsmen. Susanna was accused by the elders. A justice man like Tobit was blinded at his old age. Even Jesus was betrayed by His own disciple, Judas. These are justice men and women, but all of them faced a lot of oppressions and persecutions in their life. We can see that, these sorrowfulness are come from kinsmen, superiors, children, loved one, colleagues, and the life itself.

This is why, when we listen to the Gospel (good news), we found our consolation. Blessed are the poor in spirit, blessed are those who mourn, blessed are the meek, blessed are those who are hunger and thirst for righteousness, blessed are those who are persecuted. God’s mercy is shown to those who fear Him; God disperses the arrogant men, throws down the rulers from their thrown and lifts the lowly; the hungry will be filled with good thing, the rich will be sent away empty. The good news are brought to the poor, the captives will get their liberty, the blind will see again, the oppressed will also be freed. The sins will be forgiven. These are what we thirst for.

Cave Story (Doukutsu Monogatari) cheat in Linux

I tried to find some good games in Linux, since there is not much game development in Linux. Recently, I played Cave Story. The drawing is looking old, but the storyline is good, just like an expected Japanese game. And there are 3 different endings.

The game is not easy to play. So, I finally, try to game hack it using GameConqueror. Then, these are the memory address:

81c8614    HP 
81cce84    Polar Star / Spur Lv 
81cce98    Missle Lv 
81ccea4    Missle bullet
81cceac    Fireball Lv 
81ccec0    Bubbler Lv 
81ccecc    Bubbler bullet
81cced4    Blade / Nemesis lv

Unfortunately, GameConqueror cannot save and open the address list.

Still need to follow a game guide so that you will not miss any secret from the game.