How does a Amazon KDP paperback look like? A review of ‘400 Fresh Clean Jokes’ paperback edition

Looks like any traditionally published book.

Immediately after I published two books on Amazon, the pandemic hysteria began and the world was locked down. Two weeks ago, I had to go and pick up the book from the courier agency. The book is surprisingly light. The book quality is great except for the binding. It has glue binding and you may break the spine if you are not careful. Amazon does not do hardbacks with thread binding. My worries about my FOSS-powered book-publishing process are over. I should have used a smaller font. Other than that, the book looks like any traditionally published book. The cover looks great, unlike in this GIF animation, whose limited color palette makes it look awful.

My FFMPEG book ‘FFMPEG Quick Hacks’ paperback edition published – $20 on Amazon USA

€18 in EU and £14 in UK. Indian price unknown as online retailers continue to be restricted by the pandemic hysteria lockdown.

After I published the Kindle eBook version, I asked the developer handling FFMPEG.org’s Twitter account to review my book. The developer mentioned that the review will take some time because he was busy with several other things. Meanwhile, I had made several rounds of review of the manuscript. I found a few mistakes and added a new content. Because I had promised to make the ebook free after one year, there is no chance of the book being bought by a traditional publisher. There was no reason to delay the paperback so I decided to it on Amazon.com as well.

This is a full-color paperback. My B/W jokebook 400 Fresh Clean Jokes For Everyone had only a few pages that required color but that would have increased the price several times so I dropped the idea of a color version. For a book on video editing, a B/W version would have been cheaper but the loss of detail would have been too high.

In other news, the new 3D book cover images look neat – made using GIMP.

Jingle Bell Rock from Mean Girls, its tributes and parodies

Rachel McAdams is the prettiest girl of the lot but Lindsay Lohan became more successful.

Some years ago, I saw some online videos and learned to ride a motorcycle. Now, I think I can ride a horse as well.

In many Merrie Melodies cartoons, Yosemite Sam uses words like ‘Whoa’ and ‘Giddyap’. One or two years ago, I tried to find the meaning of these words and saw a lot of videos about horse-riding. (The sport/pastime is very expensive if you do not live on a farm.)

I also found lots of videos of the Jingle Bells Rock segment of the Mean Girls movie. I had seen the movie but did not think much about the scene where the schoolgirls dance to the song Jingle Bell Rock by Brenda Lee. Apparently, the scene had captured the imagination of kids and they have posted a lot of tributes and parodies. Here are a few of them.

The video with the twins has the best parody. The mean boys are funnier and the audience takes over the singing, just like in the movie. The best tributes are by Megan Nicole and Laura Marano. I did not add the Laura Marano video because it is unfortunately on a channel owned by a very disgusting company.

26-page ‘FFMPEG Quick Hacks’ book sample PDF available with full TOC

Full-colour but totally flat

One of the difficulties in writing for a topic like FFMPEG is the vast amount of detail to cover. How much should a writer write about and how much should he leave out? I felt that the book could be as big as a Bible and still not be enough. My approach was to leave out unnecessary technical details and pursue the goals that the reader seeks to achieve. Will my gamble pay off? To help the reader decide on that before buying the book, I have provided a 26-page full-color sample PDF of the book.

Other things in favour of the book are the neat formatting and page design (not exported from Microsoft Word), rich illustrations and subtle but sophisticated learning cues. By the end of the book, the reader will be confident of reading the documentation and solving problems on his/her own. If this level is reached, then the book’s purpose has been met.

FFMPEG book

My FFMPEG book ‘FFMPEG Quick Hacks’ eBook published – 140-page full-color print-replica for Kindle

Costs from Rs. 70 in India and $2 in US

I discovered FFMPEG many years ago and have often marvelled about its versatility and user-friendliness. It is intriguing that its awesomeness is not so well-known. To change this, I wrote a tip-and-tricks article on FFMPEG some years ago for a magazine. I wrote several blog posts on using FFMPEG too. For my personal use, I had created several Nautilus Action Configuration scripts that automated FFMPEG tasks. When I wanted to write a follow-up article with more FFMPEG tips and tricks, I thought it would be a better idea to publish a book so that all of this knowledge could be found in one place.

In this book, I provide an easy introduction to FFMPEG without going through all the boring confusing technical details. However, I will provide enough information for you to know what needs to be done in situations that FFMPEG users often find themselves in. Those who need in-depth information can check online FFMPEG documentation and media format specifications. This book is for those who need an easy-to-read tutorial and a desk-side ready-reference

FFMPEG book

Back cover of the book ‘FFMPEG Quick Hacks’

When I started writing this book, I was only planning to write about what I knew of FFMPEG but to make it really worthwhile to the reader I began forcing myself to learn more stuff from the documentation. I ended up with a lot more FFMPEG knowledge now than before.

Ebook Before Paperback

I have asked the Twitter handle @FFMPEG to privately review the book before I publish it as a paperback. @FFMPEG agreed to review the book if it was free. I have told him the book will become free after one year because I want to prove that my FOSS toolchain to create professional quality books is successful. The 140-page FFMPEG book is available as a print-replica Kindle ebook now for $2.

Online FFMPEG Demo Videos

A book can have only pictures. To demonstrate videos, you need to have videos. Here is a online playlist of some videos I created to illustrate the book.

EmailTweetor for Linux/Mac/Windows v2020.04.14 adds tweets archiving ability

Also available: A shell script to mass-delete tweets.

Subhash TweetsToRSS can also has the ability to archive tweets but I wanted the ability to use the archive in a shell script.

java -jar emailtweetor.jar dump TwitterUserName [last_status_id]

When used without the last_status_id, EmailTweetor will try to list upto 3200 of the latest tweets from the user. This limit, they say, is for 15 minutes. Upto 1 lakh tweets can be requested in 24 hours. If you specify the ID of the 3200th tweet after 15 minutes, you may be able to proceed further.

The list has three columns – URL, text content and date.

java -jar emailtweetor.jar dump realDonaldTrump > tweets-archive.txt
tail -n +2 tweets-archive.txt | \
  awk 'BEGIN { FS="⁑"; RS="¶"; ORS="" } { print $1 }' \
  > tweets-urls.txt

This command eliminates the first line of the output and prints only the first column containing the tweet URLs.

This URL list can be given to EmailTweetor so that each tweet can be deleted.

cat tweets-urls.txt | read -p sTweet
do
  java -jar emailtweetor.jar delete $sTweet
done

I did not create the ability do this within EmailTweetor to prevent accidental destruction of tweets. This way of deleting tweets is much simpler than the obsolescence-prone GreaseMonkey Twitter Deletor.

Archive in spreadsheet

When you paste the output in Calc (LibreOffice), the field separator option should be set to ⁑. The text delimiter should be set to ⁗.

 

BASH script to block Twitter followers, en masse

Without even looking at their names

In a previous update of EmailTweetor, I added the ability block/unblock, follow/unfollow and mute/unmute other Twitter accounts from the command-line (in Linux/Mac/Windows, not Android).

I do not follow anyone on Twitter and I do not want anyone following me. (I use Tweets for their temporary presence online, as a historical record. I delete all my tweets afterwords after I take a backup with TwitterToRSS.) When TwitterToRSS shows me that somebody is following me, I need to manually type their names to block them. Today, I created a Linux BASH script to automate the process of blocking them – en masse.

DDIR="/home/$USERNAME/sbin/EmailTweetor"
ETR="java -jar ./EmailTweetor.jar "
LISTFIL="followers.lst"


cd $DDIR
if [ -f "$LISTFIL" ]; then
  sTimeStamp=`date +%G-%m-%g-%I-%M-%S`
  mv $LISTFIL $LISTFIL.$sTimeStamp.bak
fi

$ETR trolls > $LISTFIL
#LISTFIL="test.txt" #Comment this

iLines=`wc -l $LISTFIL | awk '{ print $1 }'`

#echo $iLines

if [ $iLines -gt 4 ]; then
  let iCatch=iLines-4
  tail -$iCatch $LISTFIL > follower-accounts.lst
  cat follower-accounts.lst | while read sLine
  do
    #echo $sLine | awk '{ print $1 }'
    sAccount=`echo $sLine | awk '{ print $1 }'`
    $ETR block $sAccount >> $DDIR/blocked-twitter-followers.lst
  done
  echo "Finished blocking all followers"
else
  echo "No followers"
fi

The command java -jar EmailTweetor.jar trolls displays the owner account name, two blank lines, column headings, and two columns of follower accounts and account names. This script ignores the first four lines and the second column (containing the account names) and then proceeds to block the accounts in the first column.

How to block Twitter accounts suggestions

The simplest way to do this is to disable the HTML block containing these suggestions. (Right-click near the block, select Inspect element fro the context menu, find the ID or class names of the DIV elements, and mark them as “display: none!important” in the /home/$USERNAME/.mozilla/firefox/[your-profile-name]/chrome/user-Content.css.)

Another way is to manually block accounts that are repeatedly suggested. Twitter cannot suggest an account if you have blocked it. The coronavirus has given obscure bureaucrats some exposure.

How to block Twitter account suggestions

Italy offers 400 Fresh Clean Jokes For Everyone

The not-so leaning tower of Pisa.
Not-so leaning tower of Pisa, Italy

Not-so leaning tower of Pisa, Italy

Improve your world outlook with this 167-page 470-joke subset (Rs. 50 or $2 for Kindle eBook and $8 for paperback) of the great book. It has plenty of children’s jokes, computer jokes, computer programming jokes, cross-the-road jokes, animal jokes, physics jokes, biology jokes, geography jokes, medical jokes, pun jokes, bar jokes, blonde jokes, knock-knock jokes, financial jokes, jokes in advertising, jokes on journalism, romantic jokes, Rajinikanth Facts (like Chuck Norris facts), Confucius-say jokes, ethnic jokes, lightbulb jokes and political jokes.

Read a sample of the jokes in the newly published excerpts from the book.

All jokes in the book are child-friendly and family friendly. No ( ͡⚆ ʖ ͡⚆ ), 彡 or (‿ˠ‿) humour.


Photo courtesy: Lizzie

“400 Fresh Clean Jokes For Everyone” by V. Subhash published as paperback and Kindle eBook download

A 171-page 470-joke subset of the 2020 Fresh Clean Jokes For Everyone is now available for order on Amazon.com

I reduced the paperback price by $2 today because I need to order a copy.

The book is available as

The eBook is a full-color print-replica. The paperback is black-and-white or rather grayscale printing. There is only one joke section (“Journalism Jokes”) that requires color printing. To print the entire book in color print because of just one color chapter increases the cost sky-high. There is only one picture in that section that requires color so I have made it available for free in the jokes listed in the newly published excerpts.

Today, I noted that the physics, chemistry and biology joke sections did not have enough jokes and increased them to two pages minimum. The total number of jokes in the book is now above 470. Some unusual mistakes were also found and corrected.

How to search for 400 Fresh Clean Jokes For Everyone on Amazon

Stop quarantining “CORONAVIRUS” patients in enclosed places like hospitals, hotels, and ships! Use isolated open spaces to treat victims and limit spread of infection!

Developed countries are using medieval practices of quarantining. Concentrating the airborne virus in an enclosed space is a stupid procedure with a dangerous outcome.

Shiploads of people have been stranded on the sea and country after country are turning them away. What good is medical science if you have to be this callous?

When you quarantine people in enclosed places like hospitals, hotels and ships, you are only concentrating the number of viruses that are spread by the air. The virus gets settled in the ventilation system, from where they will continue to flourish and spread.

How to effectively quarantine and treat CORONAVIRUS patients

Instead, infected people should be taken to isolated flat grounds and placed under roof-only tents with limited paneling so that wind draft will harmlessly take away any virus sneezed or coughed into the air by patients. In cold places, room-heaters should be placed under patients beds so they do not feel the cold.

Without fresh supply of air, medical staff are putting themselves at risk of infection. This is how so many medical personnel have themselves become infected in China. Masks are useless in an atmosphere where the viral load is high.

If there is no medical personnel to treat the infected, then it is ZOMBIE APOCALYPSE.

How to quarantine and treat CORONAVIRUS patients