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Configuring "locales" in Debian and Ubuntu, using Ansible - Reloaded

Last year I posted about how to configure "locales" in Debian or Ubuntu, using Ansible. Back then I did not know that there is an Ansible "debconf" module available, and I have no idea how I could miss it. Anyway, this makes things a bit easier, but not much.

First of all, the module let's you both set and query values. However because the "locales" package does not use debconf for the list of locales, but stores this list in /etc/locale.gen, things are still unnecessary complicated. But I managed to get it working without having to use an additional file as flag if this step was completed before.


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Most annoying Samsung mobile "features" - Part 2

About two years ago, I wrote about a long list of annoying features in my then Samsung S5 device (company issued). A while ago I got a Samsung S6 - so it's time to see if Samsung came around and fixed items on the list.

The good news is that some of the really annoying "features" are gone. No more unnerving sounds when the device is fully charged, no more mandatory warning about sealing the USB port cover when unplugging from the charger (this might have to do with the fact that the S6 is no longer waterproof). Lock screen timeout slightly increased, but you also have to slide up to unlock the device - it no longer presents the keyboard by default. S Finder is gone - who did ever use this one anyway?

But not all is shiny and improved.

Auto Brightness

The Auto Brightness thing is still present, and occasionally leaves me with a phone which is way too dark, and I have to manually adjust the brightness.

Power Saving Notification

Well, this one is gone or present, because it only is present if you activate the "Power Saving" option. That's good for saving battery, but it's bad because it does not work well with certain apps. If an app needs the GPS position (like my running app), well, bad, "Power Saving" needs to be off. Too bad. On top of that, the warning changed to a somewhat confusing one that says "performance is limited" - which inexperienced customer wants to read that?

But in the end, this seems to be an Android problem, not a Samsung problem.

Emergency Mode

The Emergency Mode is still there, and it still occupies a position in the power button menu. Will let you know if I ever need this one.

New annoyances

Samsung wouldn't be Samsung if they don't manage to add a few more things.

Data Roaming notification

If you are abroad, the device will show a notification at all times. Occupies precious real estate in the notification bar - and I certainly know where I am anyway.

Flight Mode button gone from Power menu

This one is really annoying: in older versions, there was a "switch flight mode on or off" button on the power menu, the one you get if you long press the power button. They removed this one - in consequence you have to login, go to the notifications, slide down the quick access options, and activate or deactivate it there.

Don't know what they were thinking, I rather have the Flight Mode button there, over the Emergency Mode button.

Power Saving kills apps

If the Power Saving mode is on (and who doesn't like extended battery life), apps are killed after a while. This is rather annoying if apps take a while until they start up, or reach out to some cloud service and download data when they start.


The S6 got better, compared to the S5. But still not something I would by on my own.

PostgreSQL @ FOSDEM 2017 - Review

FOSDEM 2017 is over, and hopefully everyone is back home. Time for a short review.

Once again, PostgreSQL ran a pre-conference to FOSDEM, called PGDay. One day just filled with awesome PostgreSQL talks, and meeting community members.

Many speakers uploaded or linked their talks to the PostgreSQL Wiki. If the slides for a talk are missing, please contact the speaker and ask them to upload or link the slides. (For the record, my slides are here)

The FOSDEM video team already uploaded the recordings, and the PostgreSQL Volunteers reviewed every single video. Find them here. Devrim also did short recordings of most of the talks, and posted them on Twitter.

The Hacker Public Radio did interviews with many projects, including PostgreSQL. Find the interview here.

The PostgreSQL Project had a Devroom on Sunday. The schedule is part of the regular PGDay/FOSDEM schedule. And of course we managed to fill the room to the last seat, standing room only. If only people would obey the "Room is full" sign on the door ;-)

We also had a booth (pic 2, pic 3) in the main building, where you can talk with community members about anything around PostgreSQL. Also we had some nice merchandise. Matching the bad weather, the umbrellas went very well. We promise to have more next year.

Last but not least, Slonik visited FOSDEM. Here is just a short selection of pictures.

Hope to see you all next year!


P.S.: The next PostgreSQL Europe Conference will be in Warsaw, in October. Details can be found here.

How to clear the cached data in Android - without any App

Up until recently I was using an App to clean the the Android cache once in a while. If you don't, the device over time get's sluggish, because too many apps store too much data in the cache. Over time this cache can grow to GBs in size.

On the other hand, every single "clean cache App", over time, started showing more and more aggresive advertising. I get that the developer wants to make some money, that's fine. But maybe the money is not enough, so more advertising it is.

Turns out, there is a built-in way in Android to clean the cache. No need for an extra App.



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Slides from my talk "Tour de Data Types: VARCHAR2 or CHAR(255)?" at FOSDEM 2017

I had the opportunity to talk about the many datatypes in PostgreSQL, in the PostgreSQL Devroom at FOSDEM 2017. It's quite interesting how many people only use the basic data types and don't know the broad range of types which PostgreSQL is offering.

My slides are available here: *click*