Chris Alexander

On Engineering

BT, Linux, and Bubblemon

25th November, 2007

A long time ago in a galaxy far far away… No seriously. Back in October 2003 I did my work experience at BT Adastral Park in Martlesham. I got the best deal out of the three Year 10 students, because I was placed with some people I knew and got to build a website about the internet - one student was a typical intern and the other wasn’t too fond of his group after “they went wild when their system failed with a code 1 error - this didn’t happen to them very often”.

Anyway, while I was in the office quietly learning how to do form submissions with Perl (ahh back in the day), one of the guys who worked in the office came in with a small linux box he was going to put to some use doing something (apologies for the ambiguity, don’t want to spoil anything!). On this linux box (when you plugged it into a monitor - it was quite small after all) it had a system monitor that comprised of a fish tank with seaweed, fish, bubbles and everything. The water level indicated RAM usage, fish swimming right / left indicated network traffic in / out, bubbles were processor usage. As a bonus, there was a rubber duck bobbing on the surface - this didn’t do anything productive.

Since that day I’ve been trying to find a monitor of equal calibre for my computer, be it Windows or Linux, and my results so far make the conclusion of this story a negative one - I have found a system monitor which sits on the Ubuntu dock which is similiar, but alas no rubber duck or fish or seaweed. A similiar package which is meant to do as it was described seemed to be great until it was run, and it turned out it had an inherant distaste for Compiz Fusion, and I’m not giving up wobbly windows for anything! :P

If anyone happens to know a great system monitor as described above (not the Ubuntu package bubblefishymon, that’s the one that doesn’t work) then now would be a really great time to let me know where it is! :-)