Month: October 2018

How to Convert YouTube Video into MP3 Audio

This is a useful tool and tutorial if you, for example, make a video on Youtube and then want to publish the audio quickly on Soundcloud (or somewhere else).

If you aren’t already running Ubuntu on your computer this will be a couple of steps more difficult for you but well worth the effort.

Step 1: Get Ubuntu on your computer

If you don’t know what this, look it up and get it done.  Apple and Microsoft are so restrictive, un-secure, and 1990….

Step 2: Open a terminal

If you don’t know what this is, go look that up too.

Step 3: Install Youtube-dl tool with Terminal

Make sure the youtube-dl app thing is installed on your machine by pasting this into your terminal.  Note, you cannot just ‘control c/control-v’ into a terminal but you need to hold down both control *and shift* before pressing V to paste…  ready?  Ok, control C this into your computers clipboard:

sudo apt install youtube-dl

Now press enter in Terminal.

This will complete the installation of the tool.  Say ‘yes’ if it asks you to do anything since it’s just hard to argue these days…

Step 4: Copy the ‘magic line’ into your clipboard

We say ‘magic’ in technology when we’re doing something that is harder than sending an email.

Copy this ‘magic line’ of whatever to your computer with control C

youtube-dl –extract-audio –audio-format mp3

Step 5: Paste the ‘magic line’ into your Terminal

Paste the ‘magic line’ into your terminal taking note of my notes in Step 3…  pay special attention that there is only one trailing space and no other stuff after the ‘3’ in mp3.  You are going to paste a URL here from the video in the next step so extra garbage before or after the ‘magic line’ could mess it up.

Step 6: Copy Video URL from Youtube to clipboard

Using the ‘share’ link from the Youtube video (I find this works better than the main video URL…) copy the URL to the computer clipboard.

Step 7: Paste video URL to Terminal

Paste the video URL at the end of the magic line in your terminal using again my notes from Step 3.

Step 8: Press ‘enter’ in Terminal and get some popcorn

Press ‘enter’ on your keyboard.  The thing should run and it will be dumping the mp3 audio into your ‘home’ folder on your computer.  It takes a bit of time for this step so let it go and have a coffee

Boom.  A nice MP3 of your video.

Thanks to all the folks who made the youtube-dl tool!

Thanks to all the efforts of the free software community who make all of this possible.

Extra note: If, for some reason everything looks like it was running fine and you can’t find your new MP3 file in the Home directory, it’s possible the defaults were changed by you or something else and the Terminal downloaded the video somewhere else.  Do a system wide search for your file and you’ll probably find it somewhere.  This happened to me a few times 🙁

 

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The Three Best Alternatives to Android and iOS

I have to say “I’m sorry”.  The fact of the matter is that I’ve been holding back this secret too long and I have to share it.  I was doing a search for ‘alternatives to ios’ and ‘alternatives to android’ and I was surprised to see that there are only super old articles and the content results from alternativeto.net (which is a great website, btw).  I was surprised that a lot of abandoned operating systems were still being shown and not many people have done much writing on the topic.  I thought – maybe I should write this, seeing that an alternative to these options has recently gone from ‘optional’ to ‘mandatory’ status.  So, here we go.  A super, duper fast article to tell you what’s out there these days and which one is best:

The next big mobile OS. Its not an alternative

Number 3 – Purism and Librem

So these guys are pretty cool both in philosophy and what they’re trying to do.  The short version of the story is that they are making their own mobile OS called ‘Pure OS’ but they will also support a couple of other operating systems to be installed as well if you don’t want to stick with theirs.  What’s unique about them is that they have a serious focus on free, transparent, and safe **hardware** with the Librem 5 (not available at the time of this blog).  This is something that is completely missing from the current ‘accessible’ marketplace and a lot of people want it.  They are also kind of neat because they started with a crowdfunding thing.  But – they haven’t launched their device yet so this entire paragraph is of no value to you other than ‘Hey! You … might be able to access this cool stuff in 2019….maybe… hopefully…”  If they succeed they will have ‘the most open and free’ hardware setup around based on today’s situation.
https://puri.sm/

Number 2 – Postmarket OS

These guys are pretty cool too.  They plan to keep phones alive longer and make them more free by means of free and open source software.  They are not as ‘free and open’ as Purism plans to be, since they will still run ‘overtop Android’ (kind of a layer in between) but at least you could use your device without Google or Apple bothering you which is pretty awesome.  Unfortunately, mom and grandpa won’t be installing it quite yet since it’s still … very hard.  In fact, don’t bother trying yet unless you have a pretty skilled person nearby (who probably has a nice neck beard) who knows what the word ‘compile’ and ‘build’ means…

Number 1 – Ubuntu Touch

Just my opinion (blogs are allowed to have these these) but Ubuntu Touch is the **only** option available **right now**.  Right now, on select devices (https://devices.ubuntu-touch.io/)  (not all) you can, relatively easily and usually with a simple installer that you are already familar with – install Ubuntu Touch on your mobile phone.  It’s quite common for people to be up and running in just a few hours.  And if you have a snag, the UBports community is one of the most vibrant, active and fun communities in the world.  You can check out their ‘fireside chats’ here( https://ubports.com/blog/ubports-blog-1/tag/ubuntu-touch-q-a-3) as an example, or, jump straight into their front door by joining their Telegram supergroup or their Matrix Supergroup. From there you’ll be pointed to places where volunteers will help you get started.  I’ve been so impressed by this community and the lightening fast development that I have full confidence we will see something available to purchase out of the box within 2 years from the date of this post.  Mark my words and you heard it first here.  But, just think – free from Google’s spying eyes.  Free from Apple’s rigid proprietary hardware.  Right now. Not tomorrow. 
https://ubports.com
Oh, and hey.  If you are a developer (I’m not evidently), you can start building stuff for all of these projects above and make a difference.  If I were a developer then I would be jumping on the opportunity to work with these guys, especially Ubuntu Touch since it’s very easy to find the code and the community is quite open.

Do it.

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How to Fix Black and Decker Coffee Grinder in 10 minutes

Ever seen this coffee grinder?

 

Hopefully you weren’t unfortunate to buy it, but if you were and dropped the lid JUST ONCE, you will know that Black and Decker designed this to break.  They had to actually think long and hard in a design room to figure out a way to make sure this would break in the first few months.  Anyway, they upset me so much with this one that I actually decided to fix it so that their evil design team wouldn’t have the joy of knowing I ‘might’ buy another one…

Now, to upset them more, I’m going to share this 10 minute fix with you.

It’s so easy, I’m not even going to give instructions.  Just let the pictures do the teaching, and enjoy your totally perfectly coffee grinder.

 

STEP 1

STEP 1

 

STEP 2

STEP 3

 

 

STEP 4

 

STEP 5 – ENJOY!

 

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