[opensource] Meeting [12/4]: Abusing the Unix Shell

Marc Uhrich uhrich.1 at gradsch.ohio-state.edu
Tue Dec 9 13:06:28 EST 2008

I had the same impression as Jim.  Nvidia used to be the way to go for
Linux compatible drivers.  I guess things have changed according to this
(https://help.ubuntu.com/ubuntu/desktopguide/C/hardware.html) link. ATI
cards work with hardware acceleration out of the box with Ubuntu, but
Nvidia requires their proprietary drivers. Although, there isn't any
problem with Nvidia cards as long as you don't have an issue with their
proprietary drivers. 


As for the original question of having a movie wallpaper.  Mplayer will
do it with the -rootwin and -fs options enabled.  VLC has a wallpaper
option in windows, but I think it is missing in Linux.


With the lack of compression and hardware acceleration, taking
screenshots of videos and slapping them on the background would probably
be impractical.  It would be cool to get a slideshow type effect from
slices of a movie.  Lets say I love the movie hackers, I could slice it
apart in 1 minute segments and have the background change over the 2
hour movie period.  I'd get the effect of scene prompts, but not
necessarily watch it all the way though.  Plus, I'd get the street cred
for knowing how to stop the cookie monster virus.


Ohh, and because the subject of the email is "abusing the unix shell" I
have to submit my most often used one liner below. Although I guess this
isn't abuse unless you use -9.

ps -ef|grep (username or program)|awk '{print $1}'|xargs kill -(number)

Marc Uhrich

Systems Engineer @ OSU Graduate School

247 University Hall, 230 N Oval Mall

Columbus, Ohio  43210

(614) 292-0600


From: opensource-bounces at cse.ohio-state.edu
[mailto:opensource-bounces at cse.ohio-state.edu] On Behalf Of Aaron Joseph
Sent: Tuesday, December 09, 2008 11:05 AM
To: Jim Dinan
Cc: opensource
Subject: Re: [opensource] Meeting [12/4]: Abusing the Unix Shell



>From what I've read I think it may be easier to get ATI cards working in
Linux. I know I had to put some serious time into getting 3 monitors to
work with my Nvidia cards..... so if ATI drivers aren't better than the
Nvidia ones then we all need to have a moment of silence for all the ATI
users of the world. Don't quote me on this, but I almost feel like I had
read that ATI drivers were open source. Of course this was a while ago,
so I may be wrong. Can anyone confirm/deny this claim? I want to buy new
graphics cards and I was looking to try ATI cards this time around. 


--Aaron Joseph
 Joseph.181 at osu.edu

On Tue, Dec 9, 2008 at 10:51 AM, Jim Dinan <dinan at cse.ohio-state.edu>

Hi Brian,

Nope, wallpaper_slideshow isn't a screensaver.  It periodically changes
your desktop wallpaper for you even while you are using the machine (ie
right click on the desktop -> "Change Desktop Background" -> ...).

By the way, I had heard that the ATI linux drivers were pretty good
these days?  Is the conventional wisdom still to stick with Nvidia for
accelerated 3d under Linux?


Brian Swaney wrote:
> This could be a really stupid comment, but I'll post it anyway on the
> off chance that it's not.
> /Aaron Joseph wrote:/
>> I want to try adjusting the refresh rate to be a fraction of a second
>> and then try to use frames from a video with the script to see if I
>> can get it to the point of displaying a moving image on my desktop.
>> Unfortunately I foresee some serious resource usage problems on the
>> horizon since this is something that should really be done by writing
>> a program in C that does this. But if anyone happens to have a
>> supercomputer and can get this going then let me know how it turns
> If it's the screensaver, and is therefore running in response to the
> computer being /idle/, then you should have some extra CPU cylces to
> around. Just run the proper codec and select a matching format file. I
> don't think I know enough about bash or videos to point you in the
> direction, but I'm sure there is some string of commands you could use
> to display the output of a codec from a large file to your computer
> screen. Or you could probably use mplayer with some arguments or
> In the case of a low frame-rate, it's probably because of the graphics
> card. Mine is a proprietary ATI one, and if I try putting any kind of
> video in full screen, the frame rate is pathetic. On that new computer
> I'm returning, it has an Intel video card with a driver that (gasp!)
> actually works when you're not using Windows Vista. Unlike ATI, its
> framerate is significantly less than 1 second. I heard this card isn't
> the greatest at performance, but it certainly does the trick for
> full-screen videos. With the right video card and maybe a decent
> processor, this sort of thing should be doable; better than having a
> movie interrupted by a screensaver anyway.
> -Brian Swaney


-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: http://mail.cse.ohio-state.edu/mailman/private/opensource/attachments/20081209/37986c75/attachment.html

More information about the Opensource mailing list