Linux software: the kid's plan for an icy day

Linux software: the kid's plan for an icy day

Hi, it's B and G, the little kids in this house. We've had a lot of ice lately. The TV says we may even lose the electricity. Dad said he needed to write his blog early this weekend. But right now, he is walking around the living room and griping about writer's block. He looks kinda funny.

So we sneaked in here to say what we don't like and do like about the computer. The adults have said what they liked, now it is the kid's turn.

What we don't like is not having enough time on the computer. The adults in this house use it WAY more than we do. How can work be more important than playing on the computer? Do we really have to ride our bikes or play catch three days in a row? We tried whining for more time, but now we use it even less. What's up with that? We think we should just ask for another computer. We'll let you know how it goes.

Also, what is this deal about different sides to the computer? Dad started going on about dual-booting and different operating tables (oops, that's operating systems). Shouldn't it just work together? Seems like whatever game we want to play, Dad has the computer on the wrong side. C'mon Dad, get it right.

Off to the fun stuff, we'll take turns sharing a couple of our favorite games. These games are for little kids, so no peeking by grownups.

B - One of my favorite games is TuxPaint. I love to draw and color pictures. TuxPaint has lots of different colors and shapes to use for drawing. You can also color some pictures that come with it. But my favorite part is using the Magic effects. You can create rainbows and sparkles and grass by choosing the right button. The best part is the sound the brick's button makes. Mom's face turns just as purple as the bricks.

G – I like KBattleship. Placing your ships in the water is easy. Push the big Shift button to change which way your ship points. I really like when I sink the long ship. The games are fast and I can play lots of games before getting kicked off the computer.

B – Another good game is Hexagon in GCompris. You look for a strawberry hiding in a field. The box colors let you know how close you are to the strawberry. Dark red is very close.

G – I also like Potato Guy. I can make a neat fishbowl. Or I can make a Potato person or a Penguin dress very funny. Mom says this is why I'm not allowed to pick my own clothes yet.

We both like looking at the stars and planets with Celestia. Spinning fast around the moon or Saturn's rings is neat. Spinning fast around the kitchen causes Dad to be grumpy. It's worse when he hasn't had coffee.

Websites with a lot of kid activities are fun. Some of our favorites are PBSKids, Scholastic and

Hey, because of this ice, we are going to be inside all day. Why aren't we playing these games right now? Gotta go!



Anonymous visitor's picture
Submitted by Anonymous visitor (not verified) on

...but Chris you have way too muck time on your hands.

William "Papa" Meloney

Rosalyn Hunter's picture

My kids are also complaining about not enough time on the computer.
They have their own computer but it is down because it got so hot the CPU fused to the heatsink and we had to take it apart. I understand withdrawal, but then again parents love hogging the computer. It's the priviledge you get for being the big person in the house.

HA! HA! HA! I'm not getting off now, you have to wait until you can grow up and buy one of your own.

Sorry. Got a bit carried away there.

Enjoy the icicles!

Terry Hancock's picture

Not quite accurate...

I don't think the overheat is attributed to the heat sink sticking to the CPU, and I think that probably has more to do with cold than heat. Apparently heat sink grease becomes very solid and sticky when it gets cold. When I disassembled the computer to remove the heat-sink and fan (I want to clean it and reassemble to see if the problem is dust or something) the heat sink pulled the CPU right out of its ZIF socket. (!)

I found that if I microwaved some water in a dish, then set the heatsint/CPU in the water (with the CPU up, out of the water), the heat sink conducts enough heat out of the water into the grease so that it loosens up. Then I could remove the CPU without damaging it, and reinstalled it into the ZIF socket. You can't install one of these while attached to heat sink, because you have to be able to operate the lever on the ZIF socket, and it would actually be inside the heat sink when it's open, so it wouldn't fit anyway. I like to post this, because it might come in handy for somebody. Be careful not to cook the CPU, though.

The sad thing is, with us iced in, I can't go to the store to buy more heat sink grease to reassemble it, so the kids'll have to wait until the weather improves to get their computer back. Even then, I might still find that the heat sink is no good, and I have to start all over with a new one. Sigh.

I remember when CPUs didn't need heat sinks and fans and were just epoxy-covered chips like all the others. (!)

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Chris Mostek's picture