Bits and Pieces 7
I learned how to sharpen a green wood saw blade. A few months ago I stumbled across a huge 30-inch (76cm) bow saw; I didn’t know they made them that large. So I grabbed it for just a few dollars and have been using it to cut firewood (for my brother). It works pretty well, even up to 12-inch (31cm) logs, though it takes awhile. After a couple of months, it got dull, started drifting to one side when cutting. Nobody carries blades that large locally and the ones online looked pretty cheap and fragile compared to what was on it, so I decided to learn how to sharpen it. Must have done well enough, because I have to be careful handling it now or it will shred my fingers. Cuts as nicely as before.
It’s not as if I really gave up on Linux and Open Source completely. While I no longer recommend it to people who already have trouble enough with Windows, I keep hoping someone somewhere will understand and meet the needs of users. Apparently Linux Mint gets it. They have two different interfaces which can help you forget the misery of GNOME 3. Right now it’s the most popular Linux distribution, and I hope support grows to the point Clement LeFebre can make the project depart even farther from its dependence on Ubuntu. Using their stuff leaves way too many decisions in the hands of people who don’t understand users’ needs. I’m testing Maya 64-bit with the MATE interface on my laptop.
I’m trying to learn how to produce ebooks in the epub format. While I haven’t heard back from Smashwords, the more I learn about the cheap and rickety process they use to produce their files, the more I would prefer a chance to do it right for the sake of the readers. I’m going to collect some of my “romance” stories into a single book and see if I can do a better job than Meatgrinder. From what I can see, it would be hard to do worse. I’m testing various different routes to the product. Calibre says one of the best input formats is MS Reader’s LIT files and MS offered a plugin for Word 2000 and 2003 to output Word files into that format. Another path is direct input in XHTML format, but with some restrictions on the range of tags you can use. The formatting is pretty specific that route. The other way is the Sigil project, which permits some WYSIWYG options for creating epubs from scratch, but it’s not simple.
It’s all about the message. Whatever route is the best way to get the word out to the waiting world, that’s what I am trying to find.