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Help 5150

We are a podcast community looking to help out a friend in need. Recently, our friend, 5150, lost his home that he shares with is father to a house fire. Both were able to make it out ok, but he is in the hospital with 2nd degree burns. His father is elderly and has been moved to assisted care while he is recovering.

We are looking to help 5150 get back on his feet. Our aim is raise $10,000 to help him and his father out. Please help contribute anything you can. We would also like to you share out this campaign to your Facebook, Twitter and Google+ accounts to help spread the word and help us reach this goal.

Thank you for all your support.


Latest Shows

hpr1588 :: HPR AudioBookClub-09-Down And Out In The Magic Kingdom

In this episode, the HPR_AudioBookClub reviews Down And Out In The Magic Kingdom by Cory Doctorow.

Hosted by HPR_AudioBookClub on 2014-09-03 and released under a CC-BY-SA license.
Listen in ogg, spx, or mp3 format. Series: HPR_AudioBookClub | Comments (0)


In this episode, the HPR_AudioBookClub reviews Down And Out In The Magic Kingdom by Cory Doctorow. You can download this AudioBook for free (or voluntary donation) from and it's also available in just about every ebook format you can imagine on Cory's website and as a paperback through various booksellers. We found this AudioBook enjoyable and thought provoking. The general consensus that we seem to have reached is that while the book left the reader with many unanswered questions about the world in which the book was set, they are welcome questions. It's brain bending fun.

FiftyOneFifty (the link-king) found some cool links relating to the Haunted House and how it works. Check these out!

gigasphere wrote in to say,

I listened to this book in the space of a couple of days mostly. At first it took some time to get into but then was quite enjoyable, however in the second half I started to find it a bit hard going. The story is told exclusively in the first person (I think that's right) and as the story went on I found it quite difficult not having external points of view or reference. This is probably also due to good story telling as the main Character Jules is also getting frustrated and is increasingly isolated. The book was interesting and unique even before you got to the plot line and aspects of the world the characters were living in. I would recommend the book as an example of an interesting method of story telling and I'm keen to pick up the other big Cory Doctorow book, "Little Brother".

gigasphere's spoilers (Highlight to read)

From having read the wikipedia page on Cory I can see that Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom, which is Cory's first novel, seems to have a trademark extrapolation with our own reality. The concept of backing up you mind and being brought back from the dead in a clone seems an excellent example of hyper-our-reality at the moment, but to then have everyone capable of being online using implants is also amazingly realistic when you consider the almost boom in wearables going on and the ubiquity of smartphones. I am reminded of the xkcd comic where the guy was having a USB port implanted.
The whuffie aspect of the book which replaces money, reminds me a lot of the social media thing of being rated by how many 'followers' or 'likes' or may be even 'hits' you get. This also oddly reminds me of the download stats discussion on the mailing list at the moment.
I'm not sure I'll add much to the overall discussion of the book from here as my no spoiler summary really rounds up the book for me. I would have liked to have a broader telling of the story, particularly from Lil's perspective, but the restrictions placed on the story also work to make it great, in that you are forced, as in real life, to view the world through only one person's eyes.


We think you'll agree that the HPR_AudioBookClub really showed up for this one and they brought some all-star beverages. Please enjoy this episode responsibly.

  • x1101 just wanted to make us all jealous. He brought a Lagunitas Imperial Stout to our little party and enjoyed it as much as any of us would have.
  • FiftyOneFifty was slightly disappointed by his German style Doublebock, FIREMAN'S BREW: Brunette. He says it's an unprepossessing brew, but perhaps worth it for fans of beer made with chocolate malts. Not very sweet for a dopplebock, and without much hops note except for a slight spicy kick, despite a general thinness in the flavor, it has enough cocoa flavor to satisfy fans of beers made with chocolate malt, at least until they find a better one.
  • The planets aligned and dictated that Semioticrobotic bring his favorite tea, Ginger Twist by Mighty Leaf, to our little show. It's a zippy but soothing herbal tea (technically, then, a tisane) that combines strong ginger flavors with lemon-grass and mint.
  • pokey's limited run microbrew, Saison du Buff, is a collaboration between three breweries; Dogfish Head Ales, Stone Brewing Co., and Victory Brewing Company. It can be purchased from any of the three, and if you're lucky enough to find some you should do exactly that. pokey described it as a little spicy, very complex and really enjoyable. Big thumbs up.
  • pegwole was worshiping at the porcelain vessel. No, not THAT porcelain vessel... The good one. The one that's used to serve Coffee!
  • This month gigasphere wrote in to say,
    "It's hot over here in the UK South East at the moment (25-30 degrees Celsius, yes that's hot for here!) and I'm swamped with work so I have a really boring Apple and Elderflower Juice for my drink this month. I have an Ale on the shelf that I haven't tried before but will save that for next time round when I should have a more manageable workload. On the plus side my juice is really cold and refreshing with a really strong and pleasant flavour (sic)2. It's a fresh juice and so has been kept refrigerated. Now everyone can stop laughing1 at me and get back to their proper drinks!"
  • Rather than simply reviewing a beverage like the rest of us, Thaj (attention seeker that he is) risked his life on the show by ingesting a potentially lethal amount of Dihydrogen Monoxide! The HPR_AudioBookClub does not condone this type of risky behavior, and if you are entertained by it, then you're probably a bad person.


Revolution Radio by Seth Kenlon


Street Candles by David Collins-Rivera

We're really excited about these two AudioBooks because both of these authors are HPR community members! We're assigning both at once because one is pretty short, and one is pretty long. We were a little worried that people might not finish Street Candles in time to participate, and we think this scheme may buy participants the time they they/we need.

Seth Kenlon's personal profile page:
Seth Kenlon's HPR correspondent page:

David Collins-Rivera's personal blog:
David Collins-Rivera's HPR correspondent page:


Our next book club recording will be 2014/08/12T23:00:00+00:00. If you'd like a Google calendar invite, or if you'd like to be on the HPR_AudioBookClub mailing list, please get in contact with us on the HPR mailing list 'hpr at hackerpublicradio dot org'


Thank you very much for listening to this episode of the HPR_AudioBookClub. We had a great time recording this show, and we hope you enjoyed it as well. We also hope you'll consider joining us next time. Please leave a few words in the episode's comment section.
As always; remember to visit the HPR contribution page HPR could really use your help right now.

The HPR_AudioBookClub

P.S. Some people really like finding mistakes. For their enjoyment, we always include a few.

1: The HPR_AudioBookClub doesn't laugh at anyone for reviewing tea, nor any other drink. We intentionally call the segment a "beverage review," not a "beer review" so that no one should feel alienated. Also because some of us drink wine.

2: The HPR_AudioBookClub does laugh when people try to spell flavor with a "u"

hpr1587 :: Beginner's guide to the night sky 3 - A wee dot on a dark sky

A ramble about stars, by a geeky chap who resides on planet Earth.

Hosted by Andrew Conway on 2014-09-02 and released under a CC-BY-SA license.
Listen in ogg, spx, or mp3 format. Comments (0)

A ramble about stars, by a geeky chap who resides on planet Earth. This episode is entitled a wee dot on a dark sky.

I comment briefly on why it's remarkable that the night sky is dark. I then go on to talk about the colour of stars, which we can just perceive with the naked eye. To learn more you need to use a prism, or, as professional astronomers prefer, a diffraction grating to obtain a spectrum of a star. I talk a little too much about the mathematics of diffraction gratings but eventually get back to talking about spectrum of the Sun which in overall shape is very close to what physicists call a black body spectrum ( the spectrum any object will have at a given temperature. Astronomers and physicists prefer to measure temperature in units of kelvin (, and to convert to it you only need to add 273 to the celsius temperature. Conversion from Fahrenheit is left as an exercise to the listener.

The Sun shows spectral lines, specifically dark lines on the broad spectrum called absorptions lines. This is caused by atoms in a cooler layer of gas (called the chromosphere) that's just above the bright surface of the Sun (called the photosphere). In fact, Helium is named as such because it was first discovered by its absorption lines in the solar spectrum (Helios is Greek for Sun). Many other elements can be found in the spectrum of the Sun and other stars, but most of the mass of all stars is made up of hydrogen and helium.

The temperature of a star is correlated with colour, with blue stars being hotter than red stars. This was originally measured by astronomers by something called colour or B-V (B minus V) index.

The luminosity of a star is the rate at which it emits energy as light, and can be measured in the same units as light bulbs, i.e. watts (W). But to estimate the luminosity we need to know the distance to a star which, for nearby stars, can be found by the parallax method. By plotting colour index (a proxy for temperature) against luminosity we can form a key piece of empirical evidence - the Hertzsprung Russell diagram:

It turns out that our nearest star - the Sun - is quite unremarkable. It is neither very hot or cool, nor very bright or dim - it's a fairly typical star.

hpr1586 :: HPR Community News for August 2014

Dave and Ken review the happenings for the month.

Hosted by HPR Volunteers on 2014-09-01 and released under a CC-BY-SA license.
Listen in ogg, spx, or mp3 format. Series: HPR Community News | Comments (0)

New hosts

Welcome to our new hosts:

Last Month's Shows

Id Date Title Host
1565 2014-08-01 34 - LibreOffice Calc - More on Chart Editing Ahuka
1566 2014-08-04 HPR Community News for July 2014 HPR Volunteers
1567 2014-08-05 Multiboot Partitioning with Linux Matt McGraw (g33kdad)
1568 2014-08-06 Blather Speech Recognition for Linux Jon Kulp
1569 2014-08-07 Many-to-many data relationship howto Mike Ray
1570 2014-08-08 The JFS File System JWP
1571 2014-08-11 Yahoo Mail Forwarder ToeJet
1572 2014-08-12 An Open Source News Break from semioticrobotic
1573 2014-08-13 Make your own t-shirt with bleach Quvmoh
1574 2014-08-14 Arts and Bots klaatu
1575 2014-08-15 35 - LibreOffice Calc - Introduction to Functions Ahuka
1576 2014-08-18 How I got into Linux Inscius
1577 2014-08-19 Introducing Nikola the Static Web Site and Blog Generator guitarman
1578 2014-08-20 AudioBookClub-08-How to Succeed in Evil:The Novel HPR_AudioBookClub
1579 2014-08-21 Crowd Sourced Air Quality Monitoring klaatu
1580 2014-08-22 The fast and ntfs File System JWP
1581 2014-08-25 Sensible Security: The Schneier Model Ahuka
1582 2014-08-26 An Open Source News Break from semioticrobotic
1583 2014-08-27 Podcast Generator AukonDK
1584 2014-08-28 An interview with Josh Knapp from Ken Fallon
1585 2014-08-29 36 - LibreOffice Calc - Financial Functions - Loan Payments Ahuka

Comments this month

There are 17 comments:

  • hpr1577 (2014-08-19) "Introducing Nikola the Static Web Site and Blog Generator" by guitarman.
    1. x1101 on 2014-08-21: "Thanks!"
    2. guitarman on 2014-08-23: "Cool"

  • hpr1570 (2014-08-08) "The JFS File System" by JWP.
    1. Klaatu on 2014-08-11: "JFS works for me."

  • hpr1569 (2014-08-07) "Many-to-many data relationship howto" by Mike Ray.
    1. Dave Morriss on 2014-08-08: "Thanks for an impressive show"
    2. Mike Ray on 2014-08-10: "Hope it wasn't too long and technical"
    3. Ken Fallon on 2014-08-11: "Brilliant episode but I'm still not convinced"
    4. Mike Ray on 2014-08-11: "Scalability"
    5. Ken Fallon on 2014-08-16: "Scalability is not an issue."
    6. Mike Ray on 2014-08-16: "Scalability"
    7. Ken Fallon on 2014-08-19: "Straw Man Argument"
    8. Mike Ray on 2014-08-21: "New host name"

  • hpr1568 (2014-08-06) "Blather Speech Recognition for Linux" by Jon Kulp.
    1. klaatu on 2014-08-11: "Amazing!"

  • hpr1566 (2014-08-04) "HPR Community News for July 2014" by HPR Volunteers.
    1. Steve Bickle on 2014-08-05: "How /etc is pronounced"
    2. Dave Morriss on 2014-08-07: "Et cetera, and so forth"
    3. Mike Ray on 2014-08-08: "/etc blah blah"

  • hpr1554 (2014-07-17) "07 - The Crown Conspiracy" by HPR_AudioBookClub.
    1. brijwhiz on 2014-08-03: "Journey comments and next book podcast"

  • hpr1199 (2013-03-07) "Old Time Radio on the web" by Frank Bell.
    1. Mike Ray on 2014-08-08: "OTR"


  • guitarman for messing up attribution, and the shownotes
  • semioticrobotic for mixing up his shows

hpr1585 :: 36 - LibreOffice Calc - Financial Functions - Loan Payments

Hosted by Ahuka on 2014-08-29 and released under a CC-BY-SA license.
Listen in ogg, spx, or mp3 format. Series: LibreOffice | Comments (0)

In this episode we discuss the function for determining the loan payments on a car loan, compare a manual calculation with the use of the PMT function, and derive some useful lessons.


hpr1584 :: An interview with Josh Knapp from

We talk to Josh Knapp about his new business

Hosted by Ken Fallon on 2014-08-28 and released under a CC-BY-SA license.
Listen in ogg, spx, or mp3 format. Comments (0)

For years our own Josh Knapp has been the real Server Administrator behind Hacker Public Radio, and has been subsidising it out of his own pocket for some time.

He and a few of his colleagues have decided to branch off and set up their own company. is based on a simple idea; Better web hosting that's honest and fair.

We discuss the past, the future and how it affects HPR.

hpr1583 :: Podcast Generator

Easy software to host a podcast.

Hosted by AukonDK on 2014-08-27 and released under a CC-BY-SA license.
Listen in ogg, spx, or mp3 format. Comments (0)

Podcast Generator - Software which can host your podcast and generate all the RSS feeds.

Blue Drava Podcast - a little show I'm working on, hosted using the software.

hpr1582 :: An Open Source News Break from

Tesla's patent decision, 12 challenges, and an update on the GNU Health project

Hosted by semioticrobotic on 2014-08-26 and released under a CC-BY-SA license.
Listen in ogg, spx, or mp3 format. Comments (0)

In this episode: An analysis of Tesla's patent decision, the 12 most pressing challenges for open source projects, and an update on the GNU Health project.


hpr1581 :: Sensible Security: The Schneier Model

This episode looks at a sensible model of obtaining the right amount of security for your needs.

Hosted by Ahuka on 2014-08-25 and released under a CC-BY-SA license.
Listen in ogg, spx, or mp3 format. Series: Privacy and Security | Comments (0)

Back in 2001 there was a certain incident on September 11 that lead many people to go OMG! We are doomed! We must increase security! Do whatever it takes! And the NSA was happy to oblige. And on 7/7/05 an attack in London added to the frenzy. I think it is fair to say that these security agencies felt they were given a mandate to do anything as long as it stops the attacks, and thus was the overwhelming attack on privacy moved to a whole level higher. To be clear, security agencies are always pushing the limits, it is in their DNA. And politicians have learned that you never lose votes by insisting on stronger security and appearing tough. - For more go to


hpr1579 :: Crowd Sourced Air Quality Monitoring

Klaatu interviews a programmer about new crowd-sourced air quality detection systems

Hosted by klaatu on 2014-08-21 and released under a CC-BY-SA license.
Listen in ogg, spx, or mp3 format. Comments (0)

Klaatu interviews a programmer about new crowd-sourced air quality detection systems. Big crowds at this Carnegie Melon event, so the sound quality is not great.