Hari's Corner

Humour, comics, tech, law, software, reviews, essays, articles and HOWTOs intermingled with random philosophy now and then

Minor CUPS tidbit - black and colour output

Filed under: Software and Technology by Hari
Posted on Wed, Apr 11, 2007 at 21:38 IST (last updated: Thu, Jul 17, 2008 @ 08:55 IST)

I was reconfiguring my HP PSC 1315 printer on my laptop today (as I had reinstalled Debian) and I accidentally stumbled on a minor issue I had been encountering all these days namely why I had been getting the colour cartridge to produce black text. This had been making printing slower and reducing the quality of the black output. I had simply left the Resolution, Quality, Ink Type, Media Type setting in Set Printer Options (in the CUPS interface) to "Controlled by Printout Mode." So it was either using the colour cartridge or the black cartridge exclusively to produce the output regardless of whether the page contained black or not.

Just changing this simple setting to another option (like "300 dpi, Color, Black+Color cartridge") fixed the issue. I thought it was a hpijs driver limitation, but it turned to be a configuration mistake on my part all these days.

Now I can print a mixture of pure black and colour on a single page and don't have to keep changing the printer options every time I want pure black printouts - something that had been bugging me for a long time now.

Just thought I'd make a note of this here, since I'm likely to forget this over time. This should also help others who've been having the same problem and wondering why they don't get pure black printouts by default just like in Windows.
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முதல் தமிழ் பிளாக் போஸ்ட்

Filed under: Entries in Tamil by Hari
Posted on Tue, Apr 10, 2007 at 14:29 IST (last updated: Wed, Oct 29, 2008 @ 21:30 IST)

சுமார் இரண்டு வருடங்களாக பிளாக் செய்துவருகிறேன். அதில் ஒன்றுகூட தமிழில் இல்லையா? என்ன அநியாயம்? என்ன கொடுமையிது சரவணா? என் தாய்மொழிக்கே நான் துரோகம் செய்வேனா? மன்னித்துவிடடா, மன்னித்துவிடு! அஹஹஹஹா... (அழுகை... கிண்டல் செய்யாதே!)

அதனால் நான் இப்பொழுது பிளாகில் ஒரு தமிழ் போஸ்டு எழுதப்போகிறேன். பொன்னாடையை எனக்கு வழங்கும்படி தாழ்மையுடன் கேட்டுக்கொள்ளுகிறேன். என்ன? கொடுக்கமுடியாதா? மவனெ சீவிடுவேன் சீவி... இன்னா மே?

உளரல் போதும், இத்தோட முடிச்சுகறேன், நைனா!

தடங்கலுக்கு வருந்துகிறோம். razz

Service will resume shortly for our English readers. We thank you for your patience and we hope you enjoyed the journey with us. :)
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eng2tam - English to Tamil Unicode transliterator

Filed under: My software by Hari
Posted on Tue, Apr 10, 2007 at 12:51 IST (last updated: Thu, May 7, 2009 @ 21:04 IST)

I've created a simple command-line program to convert phonetic English into Tamil (Unicode) in Linux. I found that there are plenty of language tools available for Indian languages, but nothing which comes close to being a simple phonetic translator. This script is not exactly feature-rich, but it does the job. It uses a simple one-to-one character conversion, so the phonetic conversion might not be too intuitive at first, but with a bit of learning, you'll be tying in double quick time.

It's usage is simple:
eng2tam <infile> <outfile>
Here's an example of the English input file:
`oru `Uril~ `oru raja `irun~tab~. `avb~ periy mkab~. vIrp~puli. cOk~kt~tg~km~.
And here's the Tamil output (you should see this in a Unicode aware browser with any unicode tamil font):
ஒரு ஊரில் ஒரு ராஜா இருந்தான். அவன் பெரிய மகான். வீரப்புலி. சோக்கத்தங்கம்.
Where <infile> contains the English phonetic script and <outfile> will be the file containing the transliterated unicode text in Tamil. The README file gives the complete character conversion table. The C++ source code is included with the tarred archive and you should be able to compile this program easily on other platforms as well.

Download: eng2tam.tar.gz (10.9 kB)

Dependencies: libc, libstdc++
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Linux ACPI problem on HP nx series laptops

Filed under: Software and Technology by Hari
Posted on Sun, Apr 8, 2007 at 20:03 IST (last updated: Wed, Oct 29, 2008 @ 22:28 IST)

Till recently I had a hell of a time trying to find out why my laptop no longer had the ACPI functions enabled after upgrading to kernel 2.6.18 (Debian Etch). The thing is, ACPI is very important on a laptop - without it, I get no battery status, no poweroff, no hibernate, suspend and no thermal or fan monitoring.

There was a related problem with acpid mentioned on the Debian bug report archives which confused me for a while, but that bug had been addressed by the Debian developers. However, I managed to pinpoint the exact problem only today (after weeks and weeks of frustration). Why am I saying all this? Because I found out the power of the great command, dmesg. Yes, thanks to this, I found this error message (check the highlighted part):
#dmesg | grep ACPI
BIOS-e820: 000000000f7efc00 - 000000000f7fb000 (ACPI NVS)
ACPI: RSDP (v000 HP                                    ) @ 0x000fe270
ACPI: RSDT (v001 HP     099C     0x16090520 HP   0x00000001) @ 0x0f7efc84
ACPI: FADT (v002 HP     099C     0x00000002 HP   0x00000001) @ 0x0f7efc00
ACPI: MADT (v001 HP     099C     0x00000001 HP   0x00000001) @ 0x0f7efcb4
ACPI: MCFG (v001 HP     099C     0x00000001 HP   0x00000001) @ 0x0f7efd10
ACPI: DSDT (v001 HP       DAU00  0x00010000 MSFT 0x0100000e) @ 0x00000000
ACPI: Vendor "HP    " System "  DAU00 " Revision 0x10000 has a known ACPI BIOS problem.
ACPI: Reason: Bogus fan support. This is a non-recoverable error
ACPI: Disabling ACPI support
ACPI: Interpreter disabled.
pnp: PnP ACPI: disabled
PCI quirk: region 1000-107f claimed by ICH6 ACPI/GPIO/TCO
This led me to this to this bug report which describes the problem for HP nx based laptops.

The only fix seems to be to compile a newer kernel and unfortunately that's a bit tricky since pristine kernels from kernel.org don't play too well with Debian and tend to break a few things like iptables.

I'm posting this message in the hope that other owners of HP laptops with the same problem on Linux are aware of the real issue (and can get on to this post through web search). Trust me, it sounds easy now, but I had great difficulty in pinning down this problem right down to the kernel.

For those who want to follow the issue, please check this thread I've created in forums.debian.net.
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Visitor stats for WordPress

Filed under: Software and Technology by Hari
Posted on Sat, Apr 7, 2007 at 10:59 IST (last updated: Thu, Jul 17, 2008 @ 10:46 IST)

I've just found a visitor stats plugin for WordPress. It's called Quick Stats and it can be found here. It shows fairly up-to-date statistics and it appears to be quite light-weight as well. I thought I would share it here because it's quite a handy, easy-to-install stats tool for those who don't have Cpanel or Awstats installed on their server.

Although it's not extremely detailed and doesn't show pretty graphs or track history, it's quite adequate for people who just want to know where their visitors are coming from on a day-to-day basis as technorati or google are not always up-to-date with backlinks.
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Stand up and cheer

Filed under: Humour and Nonsense by Hari
Posted on Mon, Apr 2, 2007 at 16:27 IST (last updated: Thu, Oct 30, 2008 @ 08:06 IST)

In case you don't know what you're cheering for, this blog has completed all of 200 lovely, wonderful, thoughtful, mind-improving, well-conceived, delightful, entertaining, brilliantly executed and produced entries embossed and wrapped in lovely XHTML 1.0 (as prescribed by W3C). Please stand up, applaud your champion of justice, your Creator, your mentor, your friend, your teacher, your guide, your conscience, your daily news bulletin, your hero and your unquestionable source of envy.

Your awards and testimonials speak for themselves. Papa Hari thanks you for the kind words. Here are a few of them as received by Papa Hari. First, the awards

Awarded the Best Blog of the year for three successive years in every single category available, by the Papa Hari Foundation for the Promotion of Papa Hari's Fame and Fortune. (PHFPPHFF)!

Awarded the Best Blogger of the Century by the same Foundation.

Also awarded the Best Blogger within a radius of 50,000mm of his own house.

And now, the testimonials:
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