"mot·ley" - Pronunciation Key - [mot-lee]
–ADJECTIVE: 1. exhibiting great diversity of elements; heterogeneous: a motley crowd. 2. being of different colors combined; 3. wearing a parti-colored garment: a motley fool.
–NOUN: 1. a combination of different colors. 5. a parti-colored effect. 6. the parti-colored garment of a jester. 7. a heterogeneous assemblage. 8. a medley.


Hack: Using the Sandisk Sansa Clip with Ubuntu Linux

The Motley Blogger is the only old geek in our household, meaning that I am the only one who is both old and a geek. Mrs. Motley is decidedly un-geeky, which is why I was surprised when she said she wanted an mp3 player for Christmas.

The other thing Mrs. Motley is not is free with her money. She does not tend toward the gawdy or overkill. She favors the simple and the serviceable when it comes to gadgets (except for kitchen appliances, which is a whole 'nuther post).

Mine is not to question why on those rare occasions when Mrs. Motley expresses an interest in owning an electronic gadget. Mine is only to figure out how I can convince her that we need to go to Fryes to check it out, even though I normally wind up purchasing the item on Amazon.

The missus considers Frye's a living hell (I think of it more like Paradise on Earth), but she does not have the same visceral reaction to Best Buy, so off to BB we went. Of course, the mp3 devices at BB are arranged so that you come upon the shiniest, newest, most feature-packed and expensive players first. When the divine Mrs. M saw the prices on the high-end players, she almost left the store, but we persevered and finally settled on the SanDisk Sansa Clip with 8 GB of memory.

What I hadn't considered was that I switched operating systems from Windows to Ubuntu Linux about a year ago and, despite never regretting my choice for a minute, I still think in terms of Windows and Windows compatibility when it comes to installing gadgets and their related software.  You should also know that I hate reading the Instruction pamphlets that come with new products. The result was that initially I could not get the Sansa Clip to work with the Ubuntu OS.

I messed around with it longer than I would like to admit before I could bring myself to read the operating instructions which, like virtually all other instructions that come with products these days, were a poorly-written joke. Fortunately, I was able to Google the solution. A simple change to the USB settings to  the "msc" setting, whatever the heck that means, and I was off and running. Changing that one little setting was all it took to enable me to drag-and-drop files from my Ubuntu machine to the Sansa Clip.

Mrs. Motley, a child of the sixties and seventies,  loves her head-bangin' rock more than she disdains electronic gadgets and she was looking for a way to enjoy her music without disturbing or frightening her co-workers. The Sansa Clip turned out to be a great choice at a price Mrs. M could approve. And with a little tweaking, it is Linux-compatible. Satisfying the wife and finding yet another nice product that is compatible with Linux is the best of both worlds for The Motley Blogger. It was a satisfying Christmas, indeed.