Plasma 5.14 Just Released – Here’s what to discover.

Virtual Desktops Have Changed in Favor of Activities

It doesn’t seem possible to switch virtual desktops with a programmable keyboard shortcut anymore, however, in my pure Archlinux KDE Plasma 5.14 install, it is possible to switch desktops by placing the cursor on a blank area of the screen and using the mouse wheel – if you have one. You can also switch to virtual desktops by pressing Ctrl-F1 / Ctrl-F2 etc.

Activities, on the other hand, can be programmed to switch with your own programmable keystrokes, AKA keyboard shortcuts.

For example, on my computer I set up four virtual desktops and four Activities. I also set up so I can switch to any activity on the left with Ctrl-Alt-Left or on the right with Ctrl-Alt-Right. I used to do that with virtual desktops, however, now activities behave much like virtual desktop switching used to but each activity has it’s own set of virtual desktops completely separate from the other virtual desktops. Therefore, I have 16 virtual desktops! These things are relatively easy to figure out how to do in the new KDE Plasma 5.15 release.

Since each activity can have a diffent keyboard shortcut, unlike KDE Plasma virtual desktops which all share the same wallpaper, it’s more like XFCE in that sense. The default (and perhaps only) animation in switching activities is sliding. I hope they change that. I like the cube.

Every time you set up a new activity you have the same setup of virtual desktops you had in the original. That’s probably a flaw that could be corrected, but who cares? I like four virtual desktops, so I set that up. Then I set up four activities, and each has four virtual desktops, and I can now switch from activity to activity with CTRL-ALT-LEFT (or RIGHT). It gives me 16 virtual desktops, if you follow me. Mind you that configuring how to switch activities is up to you.

I now have a super easy way to switch activities and a super easy way to switch to desktops within that activity. Essentially, I have 4 x 4 desktops, or 16. You can have as many or as few as you want. I think some projects might get buried or lost – like this article. I lost which activity and/or virtual desktop out of my 16 contained my article while I did research. Fortunately, I found it again!

KDE is still under development

KDE is still changing and I’m an old school Linux user. I used to use KDE but then abandoned it in favor of Cinnamon and Mate until years later. I’ve tried, of course, Gnome, XFCE, etcetera, but now I’m back examining Gnome after 21 years of Linux experience.

KDE is improving all the time. It is resource heavy, unlike XFCE which is lighting fast, but it’s prettier and more functional if you don’t mind the lag. Of course, if you’ve got a modern computer, there’s no lag. Go with KDE Plasma 5.14.

Remember, my personal recommendation? Kde Plasma 5.14!

How Far Can we Drill into the North Pole?

You do realize that there is no solid land over the North Pole, right? There’s ice floating on the ocean, and the ice sheet moves around as it floats. Underneath the ice there is the ocean.

Therefore, to drill into the North Pole you could just drill a hole through the ice until you hit water, or go to the bottom of the ocean and start drilling on the ocean floor.

There’s no specific reason to do so, however, and doing so would be pretty fruitless.

The North Pole has been reached by walking, by ice-breaker ship and by airplane. In the image below, a woman traveling on the Russian nuclear icebreaker Yamal holds a sign marking the North Pole, however, because the ice drifts, the sign also drifted away from the pole.

Sadly, there’s no Santa at the North Pole.

What are some little known facts about Amarillo, TX?

We have the second largest canyon in the USA, just south of here – the Palo Duro Canyon. We have a lot of very fine restaurants. The international airport terminal is small and easy to navigate. The airport, Rick Husband International Airport, was named after Rick Husband, who died in the shuttle descending back to Earth. He was the captain of the crew. There’s the famous Cadillac Ranch! It’s windier in Amarillo on average than it is in Chicago.

Everybody in the Know is talking about Black Holes

Forget the Mueller reports, President Trump, Democrats vs. Republicans and Make America Great or Small.

The big news is the black hole now visualized by astronomers and pictured here.

First black hole ever imaged.

Everyone is “astonished” by the clarity of the image, but let’s admit that is’s pretty blurry. That having said it’s in a different galaxy and thousands of times more distance than our own super-massive black hole in the Milky Way Galaxy.

But idiots here on Earth, brainwashed by political propaganda, are all about what’s going on with the Mueller report. Yes, the president is an idiot and guilty. Get over it. Look above.

Why not Switch from WordPress.com to GoDaddy

I hosted this website on WordPress.com for 2 years, but then because of pricing concerns, I switched to GoDaddy.com where I already had a hosting plan to save some money. I now think that was a mistake. Here’s why.

I had more traffic on WordPress.com. I have less traffic on GoDaddy.com. And before you go off on me, no I do not receive any benefits for this post from either WordPress.com or GoDaddy.

Many visitors are unaware who hosts your site, but WordPress.com users like to visit and like sites posted by other WordPress.com visitors. Once you make the switch to another WordPress provider, like GoDaddy, that won’t happen anymore. One of my faithful fans who “liked” almost every article I posted on this domain no longer does so because it’s no longer available on the wordpress app.

I’m paying less and posting less now that I’m hosting this site on GoDaddy. ;(

Another important reason is spam comments from pseudo users. With wordpress.com I didn’t have much problem. Now I have to weed through hundreds of such comments and delete them one by one!

Is it possible to see city lights at night from the International Space Station?

You asked, “Is it possible to see city lights at night from the International Space Station?”

Great question and yes! Certainly! Thank you for asking!

And these lights have been spectacularly photographed. Here are three examples (out of many) as seen below:

City Lights from the ISS.
City Lights from the ISS.
City Lights from the ISS.