Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Linux VS Mac OS GNU command line tools

After using the tools on Mac for a while, I realize a number of the tools that I am familiar with in Linux is not the same on Mac.

I found this website:

Apparently, there's a difference as the Mac uses the BSD version of the GNU tools.

The website tells you how to use the Linux version of the tools on Mac.

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Windows 10 installation in VirtualBox and setting up shared folder

Conversion of SAS file formats seems an unlikely challenge. Unfortunately, the packages from Python and R churned out many errors for my files. So I am trying to install an SDS version. Since I am using a Mac right now, I would need Windows to run SAS and I would need VirtualBox on my OS X. I found 2 ways to get SAS and both use VirtualBox anyway, so I thought I would document the setting up procedure, with the steps to create shared folders.

CREDITS: steps were adapted from here

Host OS: Mac OS X El Capitan 64-bit, CPU-i7 quad core @  1600 MHz, 16GB RAM
VM: Oracle's Virtualbox (VB)
Guest OS: Windows 10

Installation of Windows 10:
1) Download Windows 10 .iso file. I downloaded the 64-bit (amd64).

2) Download VirtualBox. After installation, got through the wizard to install Virtualbox. It's a very straightforward process:
a) OS Type: OS=Windows 10 (64-bit)
b) Memory: I chose fixed storage - it's supposedly faster.

3) Double click on ISO to initiate VM. Follow wizard to install Windows OS using the .iso file from (1).

Set this up to allow access of host files from the guest system.
1) Create a folder, name of your choice. For illustration purpose, the path of my folder is "C:\Shared".
2) Open VB, go Settings > Shared Folders.
3) Click on the 'Add folder' icon, key in the path, and look for folder name from (1).

4) Checking 'read-only' means you will not be able to change anything from the guest machine - guest can only 'download' - so for all practical purposes, we uncheck this.

5) You should also set "Auto-mount", and "Make Permanent", so that the folder is mounted every time you load this VM. A good picture on how this is done, click here. "Make Permanent" box might not be present, if not, do not do anything.

6) Start VM and login. From the VB menu, select Devices > CD/DVD Devices > VBoxGuestAdditions.iso
This ISO contains an image of a DVD that contains essential files. Mount this image (something like putting in a virtual CD/DVD into a virtual drive). Run the image using:
sudo /cdrom/VBoxLinnuxAddition-amd64.run

7) You might need to restart the VM.

Friday, June 24, 2016

The Medici Effect by Frans Johansson

Image credit: http://bit.ly/1zJoBIL

The Medici Effect is a book about innovation. Specifically, the author, Frans Johansson argues that innovation occurs more frequently and extraordinary inventions come to fruition when one tries to hybridize/synergize/combine/integrate/meld ideas from a diversity of more than 1 field; he called it "the intersection". Overall, the book is a simple read with very clean and concise language and a very clear message. While the arguments are not mind-blowing, the book does provide many interesting anecdotes and trivia that support the author's perspectives. If you are looking for a relatively relaxing read, and also increase your knowledge, you should pick up this book.

The book leaves with 3 key points:
1) the future lies in the intersection; if you want to innovate, find your way there
2) expect the unexpected because intersections are everywhere and you never mind what to anticipate when disparate fields collide
3) there is logic to the intersection but the logic is not obvious

>>Why 'Medici' effect? Named after the House of Medici, a politically powerful Italian family that combined the arts and banking during the Renaissance

>>Mick Pearce - Zimbabwe architect combined architecture and ant colonies in ecology
>>Leon Cooper - Nobel Prize Laureate of physics, later decided to combine brain and physics
>>George Soros - combined investment with philanthropy
>>Richard Dawkins - wrote the book "The Selfish Gene", where the word "meme" was coined - "memes propagate themselves in the meme pool by leaping from brain to brain; this is called imitation" - the field of memetics is a hybrid of culture and science.
>>Sequoyah - creation of Cherokee syllabery
>>Yvonne Chu - Kimera fashion boutique (sounds like the mythical mixed creature 'chimera')
>>Steve Jobs - Pixar success in combination of computer graphics with storytelling
>>Marcus Samuelsson - Aquavit restaurant - Swedish of Ethopian ancestry breaks down barriers/associations in culinary world - attributed his success to the cultural diversity of his life

>>RSA cipher - from the codebreakers at Stanford - William Diffie, Martin Hellman, Ronald Rinest, Adi Shamin, Leonard Adleman - allows Internet security when online shopping - the idea is you own the padlock and the key to your data, and then you distribute the padlock, but only you have the key - considered revolutionary because conventionally, keys are distributed to unlock the lock.

>>Magic the Gathering - Richard Garfield - a mathematician - randomly combine ideas, try different perspectives

>>Luis Alvarez = astronomer, combines paleontology - came up with the hypothesis that a meteorite killed the dinosaurs
>>Orit Gadiesh - chairman of Bain and company - she sees trends, patterns and integrate - advocate for being a generalist in consultant
>>Frank Herbert - sci-fi write, book "Dune"
>>Hakan Lars - inventor - invented the Time Division Multiple Access navigation system for air and sea navigation
>>Richard Branson - Virgin Group founder, went from managing a record label to airline - need to for evaluation
>>Imet Prothrow-Stith - a doctor - physician + youth violence - people tell her "you are medicalizing a sociological problem."
>>Clayton Christenson - the innovator's dilemma
>>Deepak Chopra - physician + alternative eastern medicine - popularize meditation
>>Linus Torvalds - Linux creator - bold and dare to stand up to challenges and opposition
>>Mark Twain - "Courage is the resistance to fear, mastery of fear, NOT absence of fear."
>>Glass is not a liquid - that's an urban myth

>>Corning - Lina Echeverria heads the glass research group - created and manufactured glass bulbs for Thomas Edison, color tubes for TV, glass for thermometer and LCD, glass casserole dish (Pyrex) that used directly from freezer to oven without cracking, optical fibers (intercontinental telecommunications) - "have the creativity of van Gogh but lead the life of Michelangelo" - "Do something you are interested in and can get energized about"

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Windows thinks there's a phantom second screen...

Windows has this annoying ability to "remember" a second screen, long after I have disconnected my monitor from the laptop, such that a number of windows appear to go to this phantom screen.

Follow these instructions to get the programs back to the right screen.


1) Alt-tab to choose the program.
2) Alt-space to produce a dropdown menu - choose "move"
3) Use the Arrow keys to move the program windows to desired screen.