Ddrescue – a nice little utility to write ISO to USB.

ddrescue-featureGNU Project page for Ddrescue explains that it is a data recovery tool which copies data from one block device to another. We can also use it to copy ISO data like Fedora live image to a USB stick. It’s much more graphical, as you can see in featured image, than dd which is why I prefer it.

The basic command goes like following.

$ sudo dnf install ddrescue

$ sudo ddrescue -d -D --force Fedora-Live-KDE-x86_64-23-10.iso /dev/sdb

Make sure to go over man ddrescue for further usage information.

Error Enabling Flyspell Mode

EmacsEmacs in Fedora 22 insist on using aspell as its default dictionary. Fedora when installed with locale other than en-US doesn’t seem to install aspell-en. This causes Flyspell mode to give following error.

Error enabling Flyspell mode:
(ispell-phaf: No matching entry for nil.

The above error can be fixed by adding following to your ~/.emacs which is taken from Chen Bin‘s spell check set up blog post.

;; find aspell and hunspell automatically
((executable-find "aspell")
(setq ispell-program-name "aspell")
(setq ispell-extra-args '("--sug-mode=ultra" "--lang=en_US")))
((executable-find "hunspell")
(setq ispell-program-name "hunspell")
(setq ispell-extra-args '("-d en_US")))

This doesn’t fully solve our problem. Starting Flyspell mode will give you following error.

Error enabling Flyspell mode:
(Error: No word lists can be found for the language "en_US".)

To resolve this issue you can install aspell-en.x86_64 as follows.

sudo dnf install aspell-en.x86_64

How To Remove Google+ Contact’s Birthdays From Birthday Google Calendar?

Calendar by Dafne Cholet.

Birthday calendar is one of the many useful Google calendar features. It connects to your contacts and shows your acquaintance’s birthdays in your calendar. There is one caveat. Google also includes Google+ contacts in your address book. Their birthdays sneak into your calendar.

If you are like me Google+ serves a purpose but it’s not to keep up with friends. There’s an easy way to get rid of Google+’s contact’s birthday’s from your birthday calendar.

  1. Go to settings via gear icon on your top right corner.
  2. Choose Calendar tab and then Birthdays calendar.
  3. Select “Contacts only” in “Show birthdays from.”


Nine Days Of Intolerance

Today is the first day of nine days long Indian festival of Nav Durga. We pray a different avatar of Ma Durga on each of the nine days. Thousands of people fast for nine days.

These are also the day self-proclaimed upholders of Hinduism come out of their narrow ponds.

These self-proclaimed upholders of Hinduism are folks who force themselves on rest of us who have no interest in public display of our believes.

We don’t need to dance on loud speaker in an open space for five hours on Bollywood tunes to show that we are more religious then others. We don’t have to pray in front of a huge statue of the Goddess. We don’t have to harass public for our religious beliefs. We don’t have to clog the traffic so we can dance our way to the makeshift temples.

Self-proclaimed upholders of Hinduism are the biggest threat to who we are as Indians.

One’s Focus Should Be On Practicing The Act And Not Oneself.

The latest episode of Software Engineering Radio features an interview with Linda Rising. I was outright impressed with her interest in learning science in her age.

I always tend to point out myself when I do or don’t do something. It feels really great to self congratulate but it also feels equally shitty to be at the end of shaming when you screw up. Linda’s perspective that the success comes from practicing but not some inherent quality that I possess lifted a whole lot of pressure from my shoulders.

One’s focus should be on practicing the act and not oneself.

Show Notes.

Born To Run

I am close to finishing Christopher McDougall’s Born to Run. I want to learn how to write proper book review but I don’t know how. I read books in a way that makes it impossible to process that afterward. Is it a good thing to consume media in such a fashion? I consume media for entertainment purposes. I don’t want overhead of taking notes and following up on it. I think it is a quality of a write to make up words around nonsensical things. I had been watching Game of Thrones and I wasn’t satisfied with an hour. So after watching episodes I usually read some reviews. Some of the reviews, especially on Forbes, are very passionately written which is very enjoyable to read.

From time to time I have thought how will it change me if I were to write 500 words everyday on the blog. 500 might be a big number. 100 would be a good target. Just to talk about what I have done. And difficulty in getting it done. Maybe I will do it.

In order to do anything one has to make time. If you have work stacked one after another, it is very hard to do any creative work. You want to finish something and move on to next one. There is a hurry. Hurry kills the cat.

The Real Heroes Of India

Street vendors are the real heroes of India. They stand all day in the heat and dust without much water and food just to make a little bit a day so that they can continue to live their poor lives. There is no future. People have to survive so they do it.

The biggest annoyance I see is dealing with people. Some middle class folks would come and pay Rs 10 and pretend that they just bought the person. He has to obey them. Keep them happy. The way people behave to poor people is just atrocious.

A lot of these little shops are run by 16-17 years old boys. It’s a shame that instead of becoming inventors they had to sell coconuts and chinese food.

Android without Google

Android is an awesome platform and Google provides an important infrastructure on top of it to make everyone’s experience even more pleasurable.

I do not generally subscribe to the philosophy that just because you moved from Google’s infrastructure you are safer on your small time VPS. At the end of the day they all follow the law of the land. They comply with the same government.

One of the major benefits of using a big time company is that they have immense amount of money to hire best people in the world to both keep your data safe and backed up for rainy day.

I would like to live in a world where both Google and an indie developer is on the same level playing field.

Source: Android without Google 1: Introduction – IzzyOnDroid


NH10 is an action thriller featuring Anushka Sharma and Neil Bhoopalam. From Bollywood to Parliament we have severe lack of women in strong character in our nation. Actresses mostly play pretty things in Indian society. Anushka Sharma changes that in NH 10.

NH 10 is a story of a business woman with a strong resolve to cut in the man chauvinist society. Anushka Sharma is attacked by a group of organized criminals in the capital city of India, New Delhi. Her husband is hurt that he wasn’t there to help her. They plan a trip. On the way to their destination they encounter honor killing in Haryana. Neil feels obliged to help the desolate girl who is going to be murdered by her kins. In spite of the fact the husband intervenes getting both himself and her in a load of problems.

The rest of the story revolves around how Meera played by Anushka overcomes her newfound travesty.

I was pretty bored with first half of the story. I went to the show with a pretty biased opinion that the film is going to sad depiction of our day to day life. Why would I go watch things that we experience in everyday on the Indian roads. I was pretty sure it’s not going to be Tarantino style ‘the bride deserves her revenge kind of a movie. It turned out to be quite pleasurable in the end.

In the beginning of the film when Meera has to leave party in the middle of the night to go to her office, she is spotted by two guys on a motorcycle. They immediately get in touch with their criminal friends and later they try to catch Meera who luckily escapes. I found this deeply upsetting. There is a thread of reality in this depiction. I have always thought that crimes are often opportunistic but they are not. There is a culture of crime against women in that region.

Crime against women by women is also rampant in the world we live in. The mother of the victim is the person who ordered her execution. How can a women inflict such pain on another woman?

What can we do about it? Government of India banned BBC Storyville’s documentary India’s Daughter. I think one way we can fight against such menace is by discussing these topics publicly. Discussion it until we are able to resolve it. Government have not only failed to make any changes in women safety but they also decided to shutdown any discussion of it. Something that surprised me most is the women in the parliament were crying because of the hurt that the documentary that they have not seen caused them. I think it is the time we all come out and face out demons.

Nexus 7 Writing Station

I am writing this post on a Nexus 7 2012 tablet using a Motorola Bluetooth keyboard and mouse. 2012 model of Nexus 7 has become a little too old to do anything beyond playing Clash of Clans and reading books. Most of all it has lost its charm of the title the best device at the moment. I need to find some ways to re-purpose it.

I thought I could use it as dedicated device to write. There aren’t great apps which I could use for writing journals. I am too scared too keep my data on a tablet which has a high probability of me leaving it anywhere or giving it to friends or family. I can exercise control over my system by using encryption and hiding the files.

I can certainly use this setup to make regular posts on WordPress. I don’t really like on any topic these days. I don’t do research or I don’t proofread my posts. I would like to do that though. It would require me to switch among a few apps like the writer, Chrome, audio and video player, and PDF reader. I want to be able to switch like I do on my system. There are a lot of dedicated keys on this keyboard but it doesn’t quite know how to properly use them. Like I want quickly reach overview and shuffle through apps. This can be tedious because of how mobiles work. Apps aren’t killed unless memory is required by the system. Maybe I could write a small app that would let me shuffle through a selected few apps using Alt+Tab.

I will give it a go for some time.