Fighting this bitch of a pandemic, together

Do you think the only thing you can do to help with this virus outbreak is stay at home to stop the spread? OK, that might not be as small a contribution as one might think in some places (I’m looking at you, Corona-Parties in Freiburg), but I’m sure a few of us can do a bit more. And not necessarily by spending large amounts of money.

Folding at Home

So, most, if not all of the ones reading me have a computer at home. And, assuming the electricity prices are not a problem (mine are outrageous but I’ll deal with it), Folding@Home is a nice thing to do, either by running it while you use your computer or by leaving your computer on all the time. I, personally, have my desktop computer with a basic gaming graphics card and an i7 processor running most of the time, as well an extra computer with two RX580 graphics cards running 24/7 at home. Re-purposing mining rigs is not a big issue although some considerations have to be taken into account (from a short few web searches, some might be inaccurate):

I’m actually a newbie when it comes to Folding@Home, so if you have questions you probably will have a better chance at googling them 🙂

3D Printing

A team in Spain has designed respirators that can be 3D printed. If you can understand and can help, go ahead. Inspired by them, RightToBreathe is an option for non-Spanish speaking lads.

Help Thy Neighbour

Do you have neighbours that can’t go shopping on their own? Offer to help. Be cautious when doing so and try to disinfect all the products before delivering them.

Get Creative

Have new ideas for things to do that might help? Share them with your colleagues!

Spread the Word

Talk to your friends about those things above. Post on social media. Try to get people involved.

Stay Sane

Can’t do any of the above? You can still do something.

We’re just as strong as our weakest point. Find a way that this situation doesn’t get you mentally and physically obliterated. Exercise, TV, board games, PC games, smashing your head against the wall… Whatever suits you.

Stay safe, take care of yourselves and your loved ones. We’ll get through this.

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Out of memory issue with Vivado Installer

It shouldn’t be a common issue that one wants to install a development suite such as Vivado in a system with not a lot of memory. But it so happens that I tried it on my laptop with 8 GB physical RAM and only 2 GB swap space. The error that the installer shows is not very helpful:

# ./Xilinx_Vivado_SDK_Web_2017.4_1216_1_Lin64.bin
Verifying archive integrity… All good.
Uncompressing Xilinx Installer………………………………………………………………………………..
………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….
………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….
……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………
INFO : Log file location – /root/.Xilinx/xinstall/xinstall_1543839793529.log./xsetup: line 71: 16291 Killed ${X_JAVA_HOME}/bin/java ${ARGS} -splash:${root}/data/images/splash.png -jar ${root}/lib/classes/xinstaller.jar

But ‘dmesg’ shows much more useful information:

[1459339.152707] Out of memory: Kill process 16291 (java) score 168 or sacrifice child
[1459339.152760] Killed process 16291 (java) total-vm:5680084kB, anon-rss:1753772kB, file-rss:0kB, shmem-rss:1024kB
[1459339.263118] oom_reaper: reaped process 16291 (java), now anon-rss:0kB, file-rss:0kB, shmem-rss:1024kB

Hence, the solution was to just close Firefox and Thunderbird, which had been running for a while (months?).

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VidyoDesktop autostart on login under Linux

Your VidyoDesktop client on Linux always starts when you login no matter your settings? I mean, you unset «Start VidyoDesktop on login» and it’s ignoring you? Solution:

rm ~/.config/autostart/VidyoDesktop.desktop
sudo rm /etc/xdg/autostart/VidyoDesktop.desktop

Why the option doesn’t work is beyond me, but this does.

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The ATLAS ITk strip detector. Status of R&D

My latest contribution to a conference is available for free access until March 31st, 2017: The ATLAS ITk strip detector. Status of R&D. Even though the conference was now a year ago, the article is still up to date.

Enjoy 🙂

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