Archive for the ‘Entertainment’ Category

A great way to relax visit to Sliven Cathedral, Planetarium ( Observatory ) and an Ancient History museum in Yambol, Bulgaria

Monday, January 29th, 2018


It is very odd that nowadays most of people, don't know even their own countries but visit many other countries and significant places, without even knowing the hidden gems (the great places you can relax in) in their own country. I'm not exception to this rule and I've never made a trip visit through whole Bulgaria even though I live here most of the time for the last 34 years of my life. Just before Christmas, I was in Pomorie Monastery for a 4 days spiritual and physical rest and it happened that one of the Monks Father Sergij with his novice monk Damian had to travel to a village near Yambol for an unexpected funeral of the Godfather of Damian.

Since they were about to travel to Jambol (Yambol) and there was 2 places in the car, they agreed to take me and my wife for a short few hours trip to Yambol. And that's how I got the great chance to visit Yambol, Bulgaria for a first time in life. I didn't know what to expect as I've never been in Yambol but only have been near by in Bakadjika's Monastery and the nearly organized Motorcycle Show Rocker feast just one time.

1. A first stop Sliven Cathedral Saint Demetrius Sliven

We jumped into the Car and father Sergij drove us to Yambol with a few minutes stop in Sliven, because father Sergij had something to do in the Metropolitan Building (Bishop Residence) in Sliven (just for info Yambol is a spiritual district of Sliven and the city is governed by Sliven's Metropolitan Joanikije), meanwhile we used the time while hiero-deacan Sergij was on his visit with the metropolitan to eat some food and have a 10 minutes walk around and a few minutes to pray in the Cathedral Sliven's Church Saint Demetrius of Sliven


Cathedral Church saint Demetrius of Thesaloniki holds icon of saint Demetrius of Sliven


Holy Icons of Saint Demetrius of Sliven the New Martyr (A Bulgarian Christian Martyr of the Turkish / Ottoman Slavery)


The Church Interior a Holy Liturgy Snapshot with his eminence metropolitan Joanikij


The Holy Relics of Saint Demetrius of Sliven new martyr

Here in Sliven, it is interesting facts that earlier there was quite an attempt from Roman-Catholicism missionaries to take over the Christian Orthodox people but by God's grace and efforts of the Holy Synod and the bishops who were governing the city, catholicism never spread widely even though catholics did they best to attract people by means of money, free education and other various mathods which franciscans and other catholic missionaries use.

Sliven historically has always been a city of revolutionaries and played a key role during the Bulgarian-Turkish Liberation war, the city has given a multitude of national heroes, it also an important war preparation center both during The Ottoman Bulgarian slavery as well as onwards during the years of communism 1944-1989, even nowdays there is a military forces in the city, near the city are a lot atomic shelters left from communism carved as caves in the mountains. Other interesting thing about Yambol is that near it are located the so called Blue Stones, which are rich of uraninite and therefore near it the region is higher in radiation.

2. Visit to the Planetarium (Observatory) in a Mathematics High School and a History museum in Yambol

Onwards we jumped in the car and travelled to (Yambol) Jambol – an old thracian city which lies on both banks of Tundzha river which lies in the historical region of Thrace. Near Jambol there is a historical ancient thracian city Kabyle.


Ancient Thracian City near Yambol – Kabile


Yambol Park Ormana (picture source Wikipedia)

It is interesting Yambol Peak on Livingston Island in the South Shetland Islands, Antarctica is named after Yambol.

To be honest my first impressions from Yambol were much far from excitement, you see some old buildings left from communism situated on a stiff places in a short it looked like a city of ruins of an old communist experiment, but if you put away the not ideal architecture and communistic landmarks and the kind of little depressing mood (maybe partially because of the winter) and partially because of the many buildings that are to gone through repairment works or be totally destroyed, once seeing the river and the sideview of short mountains, the mood cheers up a bit and one things maybe I was over pessimistic about this place, after all there also live people like us and perhaps they had a lof things we miss in our places.


Yambol center area makes big difference from rest of the city, as it seems shortly being reconstructed and it looks pretty much new and shiny while compared to rest of the city.


Yambol city center, the 4 domes buillding leftside is an ex-turkish Bathroom, the other right side dome bld. is a Mosque
(Notice how odd and unusual seems to see some Ottoman Medieval buildings mixture with the Concrete high-heel buildings) – picture source Delnik

On our way to the city center, we passed through a Armenian Apostolic  Church building Serp Agop, all surrounded by a buildings which looked in a post-war state


Armenian Apostolic Church – saint Agop Yambol


Yambol city in pictures (src. Wikipedia)


Yambol Panoramic view from Borovets (src. Wikipedia)

After having a walk on the city center, went to a caffeteria had a coffee with Svetlana and walked near river, we went to see the Ancient history museum, which keeps a lot of artefacts found in the Kabyle ancient Thracian village, the museum is also rich of national folklore costumes traditional for the regions, artefacts left from the Turkish-Russian liberation war an exposition of local poems, writtings, information about local customs connected with ancient Thracians and mostly a lot of artefacts before Christ.

To find the location of Yambol history museum, we had to ask some local people, as the museum is situated in a building that is not on the main centrain square but a bit aside in a cross street nearby.

After having really enjoyable time in the Museum, we went to look for the Planetarium (Observatory) which in my opinion is the greatest attraction in Yambol.
I've been to a Planetarium somewhere in Bulgaria one time as a kid and this experience has inspired me so much that later on in school the cosmos and the knowledge about the stars has always being in my heart and I learned Astronomy subject in 11 grade in school with such joy, that it was among the most interesting things I ever learned in life.

Yambol Planetarium is situated in a Yambol Mathematics High School and the Observatory is functional already for 47 years, the projection of the Stars is made via a complex device with a lot of lens manufactured by the famous Karl Zeiss East German optics and lens producer


Picture Source



Karl Zeiss lens Stars projection device in Yambol Observatory (Pretty Futuristic), ain't it?

The price of the Planetarium for a group is only 20 leva per group (10 EUR per group) and usually a group of 10 people each paying 2 eur is visiting through
prior reservation. But for people like me and my wife who don't have a previous reservation, you have to ask for a school pass by the school guard person an old good hearted man.
The price for 2 people was 5 EUR per person and we had the luck to visit the planetarium without any prior reservation, but I guess other visitors or foreigners can also agree
easily to have a visit to the Planetarium for the symbolic price of 10 eur per Planetary show.

The Planetarium's system of projection is pretty old but still the overall experience is really outstanding and it is impressive even for an grown kids like us. The lady that give us presentation
about the stars has a very indepth knowledge on astronomy and is a teacher of astronomy herself in the school (as far as I understood). The overall presentation of the stars in the Planetarium was about 2 hours and we learned tons of information about the constellations, the star order how to recognize them under a clear night sky etc. etc.

Planetarium rox and it is definitely a place to visit for people with kids, beside the planetarium room, there is an observatory with a relatively modern telescope, where on clear sky, one can enjoy watching the night sky.

Finally our trip to Yambol was over with our visit to Yambol Cathedral, saint Nicolas the Wonderworker.
The Church saint Nicolas the wonderworker was built after the Russian-Turkish liberation war, the church History starts in 1878, where a Small Russian Chapel was built by the Russian army on the place of the 2 Turkish houses. In 1894, the new Cathedral initiated by the Mayor of the city started and a Majestic Church was built whith today is an emblematic one for the city, the size of the Church is really impressive especially for a city where only 60 000 people live.

No doubt the Church is beautiful both outside and inside but unfortunately as many things in Bulgaria is to begone a reperation works so donations are welcome for sure.Yambol-Cathedral-church-st-Nikolai-chudotvorec-worndermaker

Saint Nicolas the Wonderworker Cathedral Yambol

Our trip to Yambol ended here, where we waited for father Sergij who took us with his car Daewoo and brought us back to Pomorie, where we had 2 more blessed days in Pomorie Monastery.
The trip to Yambol and the time spend with the fathers in Pomorie, as always was a real gift from God to me and my family, so if you have some free weekend and you wonder where to go in Bulgaria or you simply live or come to Burgas region and you want to change the routine boring daily pictures visit Pomorie, Sliven and Yambol, I'm sure you'll enjoy.


Share this on

How to enable Gravis UltraSound in DOSBox for enhanced music experience in DOS programs and Games

Tuesday, October 31st, 2017


Gravis UltraSound Classic


Gravis UltraSound

Gravis UltraSound or GUS is a sound card for the IBM PC compatible systems.
It was lunched in 1992 and is notable for it's ability to use real-world sound recordings (wavetable) of a musical instruments rather than artificial computer-generated waveforms.
As one of my friends used to say back then: "it sounds like a CD".

To enable GUS in DOSBox all you need to do is:

1. Download the archive with the GUS files from Extract the archive (there is already a directory in it so you don't have to create one) preferably where you keep your DOSBox stuff (like Games).

2. Find your DOSBox config file. Depending on the version or host OS, the dosbox conf file is located either inside the user profile folder or inside the same folder as dosbox.exe. In Windows 7 the config file is located at

"C:\Users\Fred\AppData\Local\VirtualStore\Program Files (x86)\dosbox.conf"

where "Fred" is your username.

In GNU/Linux it's in "/home/Fred/.dosbox/dosbox.conf" where "Fred" is your username.

The name of the conf file may also have dosbox version (for example –


Open it with a text editor like notepad (Windows) or equvalent for GNU/Linux (vi, Kate, gedit…). Locate "[gus]" section (without the quotes) and edit it so it looks like this:

#      gus: Enable the Gravis Ultrasound emulation.
#  gusrate: Sample rate of Ultrasound emulation.
#           Possible values: 44100, 48000, 32000, 22050, 16000, 11025, 8000, 49716.
#  gusbase: The IO base address of the Gravis Ultrasound.
#           Possible values: 240, 220, 260, 280, 2a0, 2c0, 2e0, 300.
#   gusirq: The IRQ number of the Gravis Ultrasound.
#           Possible values: 5, 3, 7, 9, 10, 11, 12.
#   gusdma: The DMA channel of the Gravis Ultrasound.
#           Possible values: 3, 0, 1, 5, 6, 7.
# ultradir: Path to Ultrasound directory. In this directory
#           there should be a MIDI directory that contains
#           the patch files for GUS playback. Patch sets used
#           with Timidity should work fine.


Then save the dosbox conf file.

3. Start DOSBox and mount "ULTRASND" directory to "C:".

You can do that with

mount c (directory to ULTRASND)

For example if you have extracted the archive in "C:\Games" it has created "C:\Games\ULTRASND" and the command you will have to write in DOSBox is

mount c c:\Games

(example: if your game is in "C:\Games\Heroes2" and your GUS directory is "C:\Games\ULTRSND" (if you have extracted the archive "C:\Games\") then you "mount c c:\Games" and you are set)

or for GNU/Linux if you have extracted the archive in "/home/Fred/Games" it has created "/home/Fred/Games/ULTRASND" and the command you will have to write in DOSBox is

mount c /home/Fred/Games (where "Fred" is your user name).

(example: if your game is in "/home/Fred/Games/Heroes2" and your GUS directory is "/home/Fred/Games/ULTRSND" (if you have extracted the archive" /home/Fred/Games/") in  then you "mount c /home/Fred/Games" and you are set)

You can make this automatic so you don't have to write it everytime by adding this command in the end (bottom) part of your dosbox conf file and save it.

You're practicly ready. All you need to do now is set Gravis UltraSound in your game or application setup (for example with the file "setup.exe") with IO: 240, IRQ 5 and DMA 3. If you prefer you previous sound card you can do that by selecting it again from the setup without disabling GUS from the dosbox conf file.

Happy listening!

Gravis Ultrasound


Article written by Alex

Share this on

How to install “Beneath a Steel Sky” (Freeware) PC game and add enhanced music

Monday, October 30th, 2017

Beneath a Steel Sky

Beneath a Steel Sky Screenshot 1Beneath a Steel Sky Screenshot 2






Beneath a Steel Sky (BASS) is a 1994 PC point-and-click adventure game developed by Revolution Software that has been made available as freeware for PC platforms in 2003. I really like those type of games and the sense of humour in this one is top notch. So you want to try it for yourself?

All you need to download is:

1. ScummVM

ScummVM (Script Creation Utility for Maniac Mansion Virtual Machine) is a software that allows you to play games (mainly point-and-click adventures) by interpreting the scripting languages that games use to describe the game world. You can download a version for your system from

2. Beneath a Steel Sky (BASS) for ScummVM

This is a version of the game that is made to work with ScummVM and it's a freeware. Download it from You can choose between CD or Floppy version. The Floppy version is smaller but it does not have speech (subtitles only).

3. Enchanced music (optional)

Back in the days the game was created there were a lot of sound card options and there was midi music. Some sound cards were more advanced in the midi music instruments compartment. Maybe you want that kind of enchanced sound but you don't have the hardware for it? Fortunately a guy called James Woodcock has recorded the midi tracks with powerful MIDI equipment and made them avaylable with ScummVM (thanks to the ScummVM guys too). You can download them from (Beneath A Steel Sky Enhanced Soundtrack for ScummVM) (mirror).

There are different quality versions (lossless or lossy) and different ScummVM versions. If you have downloaded the latest version of ScummVM from the link I gave you in the 1 then I recommend you to download "OGG Vorbis – Lossy (53MB) Beneath A Steel Sky – Full Soundtrack Version 1.2 (13th May, 2013)". If you are a audiophile and want only the best possible audio experience and you don't care about the bigger file size you should download the "Flac – Lossless (212MB) Beneath A Steel Sky – Full Soundtrack Version 1.2.1 (2nd Feb, 2014)" version.

How to install and start playing?

First install ScummVM. Then extract the archive with the game "Beneath a Steel Sky" in a directory of your choosing.

Then start ScummVM and choose
"Add game…".

Go to and highlight the directory you have extracted "Beneath a Steel Sky" in and click


Click "OK". The next step is optional if you want and downloaded the enchanced music.
Extract the archive with the music in the "Beneath a Steel Sky"'s directory.
Start the ScummVM program and select "Beneath a Steel Sky".

Now select [Edit Game], switch to Audio tab, tick the

"Overide Global Audio Settings" and set Sample Rate to 44kHz.

All you need now is to select the game from ScummVM and click "Start". That's it! If you want to return previous way of sound of the music just move or delete the music files from the game directory.

Happy playing!

Beneath a Steel Sky Screenshot 3

Article written by Alex

Share this on

THX 1138 a must see SCI FI-movie every Computer geek or IT professional must watch

Wednesday, October 25th, 2017






THX 1138 is an American science fiction film set in a dystopian future in which the populace is controlled through android police officers and mandatory use of drugs that suppress emotion, including outlawed sexual desire. It was directed by George Lucas in his feature film directorial debut in 1971.

Produced by Francis Ford Coppola and written by Lucas and Walter Murch, it stars Donald Pleasence and Robert Duvall.

THX 1138 was developed from Lucas's student film Electronic Labyrinth: THX 1138 4EB, which he made in 1967 while attending the University of Southern California's film school. The feature film was produced in a joint venture between Warner Bros. and Francis Ford Coppola's production company, American Zoetrope. A novelization by Ben Bova was published in 1971. The film received mixed reviews from critics and failed to find box office success on initial release; however, the film has subsequently received critical acclaim and gained a cult following, particularly in the aftermath of Lucas's success with Star Wars in 1977.

THX1138 Director's cut: The Future Trailer

The movie is one of the most awesome movies on SCi-Fi Topic I've ever seen much better than comercial ones such as Star Wars and perhaps one of the best if not the best movies, George Lucas has done ever.

The THX with its Android police is another inspirational one that perhaps has inspired the naming of the Android Operating System like that.

THX 1138 movie is an example of a kind of communist society in the future which perhaps the global elite has planned for humanity. The only mean of the THX 1138 is to consume and work being programmed (conditioned) by the central authorities with a full control over all aspects of the individual life, its kinda of pretty much what is today western world has been turning into.

I believe we're currently in a transitional stage to this futuristic society in which, the life costs zero.

Well, after all the global programmers of society in our age has a sense of humour to finance a movie like that 🙂

Share this on

Play Midis on Linux / Make Linux MIDI Ready for the Future – Enable embedded MIDI music to play in a Browser, Play MIDIs with VLC and howto enjoy Midis in Text Console

Wednesday, October 4th, 2017



Play Midis on Linux or Make Linux MIDI Ready for the Future – Enable embedded MIDI music to play in a Browser, Play MIDIs with VLC and howto enjoy Midis in Text Console HOWTO


Playing MIDI has been quite a lot of fun historically,

if you grow up in the days when personal computers were still young and the Sound Blaster was a luxury, before the raise of Mp3 music format, you have certainly enjoyed the beeping of PC Speaker and later on during 386 and 486 / 586 computers the enjoyment of playing tracked music such as S3M and MOD,

in that good days playing MIDI music was the only alternative for PC maniacs who doesn't own a CD Drive (which itself) was another luxury and even thouse who had a CD ROM device, were mainly playing music in CD audio format (.CDA).
Anyhow MIDI was a cheap and a CPU unintensive way to listen to equivalent of favourite popular Audio Songs and for those who still remember many of the songs were recreated in MIDI format, just with a number of synthesized instruments without any voice (as MIDI is usually).

The same was true also for the good old days of raise of Mobile Phones, when polyphonic was a standard as CPU power was low MIDI was a perfect substitute for the CPU heavy Encoded MP3s / OGG and other formats that required a modern for that time Intel CPU running in 50+ Mhz usually 100 / 166Mhz was perfect for the days to play Mp3 but still even on that PCs we listened to Midi songs.

Therefore if you're one of those people like me who still enjoy to play some Midi Music in the year 2017 and feel a bit like Back into the Future movie and a Free Software fan and user, especially if you're a novice GNU  / Linux Free Software user, you will be unpleasently surprised that most today's default Linux distributions doesn't have an easy way to play Midi music format out of the box right after install.

Hence below article aims to give you an understanding on

How you can play Midi Music on GNU / Linux Operating System

First, lets Prepare to load necessery Linux kernel modules to make sure MIDI can be played by soundcard:

In /etc/modules make sure you have the following list of modules loaded:

linux-desktop:~# cat /etc/modules

!Note the modules are working as of time of writting and in time can change to some other modules, depending on how the development of ALSA (Advanced Linux Sound Architecture) goes, and if the developers decide to rename the upmentioned modules

If you just have added the modules to /etc/modules with vim / nano to reload modules into the Linux kernel run:


linux-desktop:~# modprobe -a

Secondly, Installing a whole bunch of MIDI music related program tools can be achieved in Debian by installing the multimedia-midi package, e.g.:


linux-desktop:~# apt-get install –yes multimedia-midi


1. Playing Midi in Graphical environment with a double click using VLC

How to make MIDI easy listanable in Linux graphical environment like GNOME / KDE / XFCE desktop ?


If you want to make Midi music execution sa easy as  just clicking on the .MIDI file format on Linux you can do that with a midi extension available for VLC (Video Lan Client) Universal Multi Platform Media Player player

To install it on Debian Ubuntu GNU / Linux

# apt-get install –yes vlc-plugin-fluidsynth


Необходимо е да се изтеглят 6754 B архиви.
След тази операция ще бъде използвано 35,8 kB допълнително дисково пространство.
Изт:1 stretch/main amd64 vlc-plugin-fluidsynth amd64 2.2.6-1~deb9u1 [6754 B]
Изтеглени 6754 B за 0с (33,6 kB/сек)           
Selecting previously unselected package vlc-plugin-fluidsynth:amd64.
(Reading database … 382976 files and directories currently installed.)
Preparing to unpack …/vlc-plugin-fluidsynth_2.2.6-1~deb9u1_amd64.deb …
Unpacking vlc-plugin-fluidsynth:amd64 (2.2.6-1~deb9u1) …
Setting up vlc-plugin-fluidsynth:amd64 (2.2.6-1~deb9u1) …
Processing triggers for libvlc-bin:amd64 (2.2.6-1~deb9u1) …

Besides making your MIDI play on the GUI environment easy as a a point and click VLC will also be able to play MIDIs on GNU / Linux from your favourite browser (nomatter Firefox / Chrome or Opera), even though the player would play in a new PopUP Window it is easy to select once MIDI file from a random website for example – here is a directory listing of Webserver with Doom II Soundtrack in MIDI format , click over any file from list and Choose option for VLC to always remember that MIDI files has to be opened with VLC player.

2. Enable Firefox / IceWeasel browser to Support Website embedded MIDI files



So VLC could make you listen the downloadable MIDIs from Web pages but,

What if you have stumbled on an old website which was configured with very OLD HTML Code to play some nice music (or even different MIDI songs) for each part of the website (for each webpage) and you want to have the Websites created with embedded MIDIs to automatically play on Linux oncce you visit the site?

Sadly default support in Browser for MIDI across all GNU / Linux, I've used so far never worked out of the box, not that still anyone is developing modern websites with MIDIs, but still for the sake of backward compitability and for sake of interactivity it is worthy to enable embedded MIDI support in Linux

But with a couple of tunings as usual GNU / Linux can do almost everything, so here is how to enable embedded browser support for Midi on Linux (That should work with minor modifications not only on Debian / Ubuntu / ArchLinux but also on Fedoras, CentOS etc.
If you try it on any of this distributions, please drop a short comment and tell me in few lines how you made embedded midi worked on that distros.


apt-get install –yes timidity mozplugger

Next do restart firefox

Sometimes in order to work you might need to delete /home/[YOUR_USERNAME]/.mozilla/pluginreg.dat and restart firefox again, e.g. make a backup and give it a try:


cp -rpf /home/hipo/.mozilla/pluginreg.dat /home/hipo/.mozilla/pluginreg.dat.bak
rm -f /home/hipo/.mozilla/pluginreg.dat


Another good tip as talking for embedding MIDI support is to embed XPDF to render PDF pages inside the Browser, by default this is done by GNOME's Evince PDF reader but as it is sometimes buggy and might crash it is generally a good idea to switch to xpdf instead, if for some reason PDF is not directly displaying in browser or suddenly stopped working after some distro uipgrade, you might want to do below as well:

apt-get install xpdf

vim /etc/mozpluggerrc

Fin d and Comment out the line starting with:

It should look like this afterwards:

 Repeat Swallow ….

text/x-pdf: pdf: PDF file
#      repeat swallow(documentShell) fill: acroread -geometry +9000+9000 +useFrontEndProgram "$file"
        repeat noisy swallow(Xpdf) fill: xpdf -g +9000+9000 "$file"
        repeat noisy swallow(gv) fill: gv –safer –quiet –antialias -geometry +9000+9000 "$file"


3. Play Midi music in Linux text console / terminal

There is a console tool that historically has been like the Linux standard for playing midis over the years as I remember, its called timidity


To install timidity on .Deb based Linux:

linux-desktop:~$ su root
linux-desktop:~# apt-get install –yes timidity

Необходимо е да се изтеглят 0 B/580 kB архиви.
След тази операция ще бъде използвано 0 B допълнително дисково пространство.
(Reading database … 382981 files and directories currently installed.)
Preparing to unpack …/timidity_2.13.2-40.5_amd64.deb …
Unpacking timidity (2.13.2-40.5) over (2.13.2-40.5) …
Processing triggers for menu (2.1.47+b1) …
Processing triggers for man-db ( …
Setting up timidity (2.13.2-40.5) …
Processing triggers for menu (2.1.47+b1) …


To test your new MIDI Synthesizer tool and make the enjoyment full you can download Doom 2 extracted MIDI Soundtrack from here

Once you have downloaded above Metal MIDI DOOM old school arcade soundtrack and untarred it into your home directory be it ~/doom-midis

A remark to make here is timidity is quite CPU intensive, but on modern Dual and Quad-Core PC Notebooks, the CPU load is not of a big concern.

To test and play with timidity:

linux-desktop~$ timidity ~/mp3/midis/*


hipo@jericho:~/mp3/midis$ aplaymidi -l
 Port    Client name                      Port name
 14:0    Midi Through                     Midi Through Port-0
128:0    TiMidity                         TiMidity port 0
128:1    TiMidity                         TiMidity port 1
128:2    TiMidity                         TiMidity port 2
128:3    TiMidity                         TiMidity port 3


We have also the playmidi  (simple midi text console terminal player), which historically was working quite decent and I use it to in the past on my RedHat 6.0 and RedHat 7.0 to listen to my .MID format files but unfortunately as of time of writting something is wrong with it, so when I try to play MIDIs with it instead of timidity I get this erro:


$ playmidi *.mid
Playmidi 2.4 Copyright (C) 1994-1997 Nathan I. Laredo, AWE32 by Takashi Iwai
This is free software with ABSOLUTELY NO WARRANTY.
For details please see the file COPYING.
open /dev/sequencer: No such file or directory

Even though I tried hard to resolve that error by loading various midi related MIDI modules and following a lot of the suggestions online on how to  make /dev/sequencer work again it was all no luck.

Some people back in the distant year 2005, reported the problem was solved by simply loading snd-seq

But as of time of writting:


# modprobe snd-seq


Some people said in archlinux's Forum

/dev/sequencer sequencer: No such file or directory


is solved by loading snd-seq-oss kernel module, but on my Debian Linux 9.1 Stretch, this ain't work as well :


root@jericho:/home/hipo/mp3/midis# modprobe snd-seq-oss
modprobe: FATAL: Module snd-seq-oss not found in directory /lib/modules/4.9.0-3-amd64
root@jericho:/home/hipo/mp3/midis# uname -a;
Linux jericho 4.9.0-3-amd64 #1 SMP Debian 4.9.30-2+deb9u5 (2017-09-19) x86_64 GNU/Linux

Another invention of mine was to try to also link /dev/snd/seq to /dev/sequencer but this produced no positive result either:


# ln -sf /dev/snd/seq /dev/sequencer
# ls -al /dev/sequencer
lrwxrwxrwx 1 root root 12 окт  4 16:48 /dev/sequencer -> /dev/snd/seq

Note that after lining in that way I got following error with my attempt to play MIDIs with playmidi

# playmidi *.mid
Playmidi 2.4 Copyright (C) 1994-1997 Nathan I. Laredo, AWE32 by Takashi Iwai
This is free software with ABSOLUTELY NO WARRANTY.
For details please see the file COPYING.
there is no soundcard

Anyhow on some other Linux distributions (especially with Older Kernel versions), some of the above 3 suggested Fix might work perfectly fine so if you have some time give it a try please and drop me  a comment on how it went, you will help the GNU / Linux community out there that way.

Well never mind the bollocks, so

Now back to where I started timidity even though it will play fine it will not give any indication on the lenght of the midi song (precious information such as how much time is left until the end is over).

Hence if you prefer a player that gives you an indicator on how much is left towards the end length of each of the played MIDI file you can give a try to wildmidi:


linux-desktop:~$ apt-cache show wildmidi|grep -i description -A 2

Description-en: software MIDI player
 Minimal MIDI player implementation based on the wildmidi library that
 can either dump to WAV or playback over ALSA. It is intended to

Description-md5: b4b34070ae88e73e3289b751230cfc89
Tag: implemented-in::c, role::program, sound::midi, sound::player,

Description: software MIDI player
Description-md5: 4673a7051f104675c73eb344bb045607

If yet not installed install it after becoming admin user:


linux-desktop:~$ su root

linux-desktop:~# apt-get install –yes wildmidi

wildmidi is much less CPU intensive (it uses gstreamer to play (Gstreamer – open source multimedia framework)

And next give it a try by running:


linux-desktop:~$ wildmidi ~/mp3/midis/*





4. Editting MIDI files with Free Software and Proprietary MIDI Editor Programs


If you want a professional software that can play Midi in a fuzzy interactive GUI way and have some extra possibilities to edit MIDIs and other format give a try to Muse Sequencer:


linux-desktop:~$ sudo apt-get install –yes muse

The following NEW packages will be installed:
0 upgraded, 1 newly installed, 0 to remove and 38 not upgraded.
Need to get 5814 kB of archives.
After this operation, 21.0 MB of additional disk space will be used.
Get:1 stretch/main amd64 muse amd64 2.1.2-3+b1 [5814 kB]
Fetched 5814 kB in 2s (2205 kB/s)                             
    are supported and installed on your system.
Preconfiguring packages …
Selecting previously unselected package muse.
(Reading database … 382981 files and directories currently installed.)
Preparing to unpack …/muse_2.1.2-3+b1_amd64.deb …
Unpacking muse (2.1.2-3+b1) …
Processing triggers for mime-support (3.60) …
Processing triggers for desktop-file-utils (0.23-1) …
Processing triggers for doc-base (0.10.7) …
Processing 1 added doc-base file…
Registering documents with scrollkeeper…
Processing triggers for man-db ( …
Processing triggers for shared-mime-info (1.8-1) …
Unknown media type in type 'all/all'
Unknown media type in type 'all/allfiles'
Processing triggers for gnome-menus (3.13.3-9) …
Setting up muse (2.1.2-3+b1) …
Processing triggers for hicolor-icon-theme (0.15-1) …


Below is short description what Muse can do for you:


MusE is a MIDI/audio sequencer with recording and editing capabilities.
 Some Highlights:

  * Standard midifile (smf) import-/export.
  * Organizes songs in tracks and parts which you can arrange with
    the part editor.
  * MIDI editors: pianoroll, drum, list, controller.
  * Score editor with high quality postscript printer output.
  * Realtime: editing while playing.
  * Unlimited number of open editors.
  * Unlimited undo/redo.
  * Realtime and step-recording.
  * Multiple MIDI devices.
  * Unlimited number of tracks.
  * Sync to external devices: MTC/MMC, Midi Clock, Master/Slave.
  * Audio tracks, LADSPA host for master effects.
  * Multithreaded.
  * Uses raw MIDI devices.
  * XML project file.
  * Project file contains complete app state (session data).
  * Application spanning Cut/Paste Drag/Drop.


linux-desktop~:$ muse



Below is another non-free program that you might, try if MusE doesn't fit your needs (is not rich enough for editting capabilities is bitwig (though I don't recommend since it is not free software)

bitwig – Bitwig Studio is a multi-platform music-creation system for production, performance and DJing, with a focus on flexible editing tools and a super-fast workflow.



5. Some examples for Text editing and MIDI Conversion to CSV and ABC file formats There is pretty much more

For the MIDI Extremists who or people that create MIDIs and want to learn how a MIDI is made (the content of it etc.), I suggest you take a look at these 3 command line MIDI editing / conversion tools

  • midi2abc – A little tool to create MIDI formats to ABC format
  • midi2csv – Conver tour Favourite MIDI files to CSV for educational purposes so see what Channels, Tracks and Time Intervals is a MIDI song mad
  • midicopy – Copy selected, track, channel, time interval of MIDI file to another MIDI file3


Well, that's all folks now enjoy your MIDIs and don't forget to donate, as I'm jobless at the moment and the only profit I make is just a few bucks out of advertisement on this blog.

Share this on

Znachar ( Quack ) a great must watch old school soviet times Polish classic movie worhty to see

Tuesday, September 5th, 2017


My wife recently recommended a fantastic old times movie from the distant 1981 called Znachar (translated in English as Quack).
The movie is directed by Polish director called Jerzy Goffman though made in 1982 the movie premierre happened in 1982, the story plot behind the movie is based on a book from polish writer and journalist Tadeusz Dołęga Mostowicz novel Znachor.

The movie is actually a remake of older movie called under the same name Знахарь (a naturally divine gifted herbal medicine doctor).

Movie Plot

The story goes in the middle of first and second World Wars with main actor being a famous surgeon a professor in medicine Rafal Vilchur.
When back from a hard surgery operation in his county house just about to great his wife with a big bucket of flowers he finds out he is abandoned by his life, reading a letter in which she says she leaves him because she fall in love with another man, his wife takes his daughter with him and as a result of the shocking event the surgeon walks the streets hopeless still uncapable of realizing and properly evaluating his tragedy, he meets a beggar to whom he gives a lot of money and the beggar brings him in a pub and they do a heavily drinking together as a way to forget his great misfortune.

Being deadly drunk he walks out and a gang of drunkards seeing him paying with a big bucks and finding out his richness, they put him in a carret and smuggle all his money throughing him out of the city after robbing him to the last penny.
Being throughn of the carret the professor hurts his head and loses his memory, and once he wakes up and finds himself in the middle of nowhere he realizes he did not remember anything including who is he. As the robbers steal all his money and documents and he is out of the town with no ability to remember he wonders in villages and seeks to find any kind of job that can win him his daily bread.

He lived in that noman manner a couple of years and the police has catched him trying to figure out who is he but failed to identify him and even put him in jail for few weeks on the occasion he is living illegal with on identity.

Having the experience of a kind of hermit life in the woods, in one of his next catch ups by police and their rude way to try to identify him he is able to steal a documents laying on the police table that belonged to an already dead person called Anthony Kosiby and from that moment on he starts identifying under Anthony Kosibiy's name.

Even though Anthony did not remember his real identity he feels his ability to help sick people.
He starts working in another village he wanders to in a family of a small wheat orthodox christian producer called Prokop.
The only left living son of Prokop Vasiliy is since a couple of months has become a disabled due to accident and the failure of the uncaring local doctor Pavlickogo who has improperly joined his leg bones, after Vasiliy's broke his legs.

Anthony has realized the doctors failure as he still holds his subconcsious ability for surgeon and a professor. Kasiba convinces Anthony's father to agree on a improvised operation with another breaking of legs. As Vasiliy's legs gets healed, rumors all around the village spread about the natural healer and self learned doctor. 

As a mean to payback Prokop wants to reply a huge sum of gold money to Kasiba but as Casiba is already unattached to money and he only needs a play to work and stay he asks his master Prokop to keep him in his home as a part of family to whose offer Prokop happily agrees.

A mobs of sick people start coming to the newly found herbalist and a "witch doctor" for healing and all finds confort and healing this makes the quack even more famous and known all around the region.

Nearby in the village there is a small grocery store where Kasiba buys the basic goods necessery for his healing and improvised operations.
Kasiba finds himself attacted with unexplained symphathy to the young orphanned sells lady named Marusya. Marusya's beauty impresses all the young villages. In one of his visits Kasiba hears from Marusya a known melody he heard but he can't recall where he heard it but it deeply affects his soul and slowly this songs starts cherishing some memories.

The local village and nearby region state doctor Pavlickij happens to meet Anthony and because of jealousy for Anthony's success he makes prank and threatens him to expose his fraudulent medicine practices believing truly that Anthony is one of those self proclaimed doctors earlier prohibited by Polish government for the many harm these which doctors did to conventional medicine. Pavlickijy requires Anthony to immediately cancels his medicine practices or otherwise he will be exposed to police authorities.

Anthony uncareful about the prisoning threatens replies the doctor with words such as "People live in priso too". But even as the talk between two goes Vasiliy the healed lepper boy from Anthony the ex-disabled comes along and shows in front of Pavlickijy walking and even dancing and the doctor cancels his bullying instantly telling how Anthony managed to heal him.

In mean time Marusya the grocery store sells lady is being visited by a local royal count young person who falls in love with her and gives his best to attract Marusya, another local waiter guy is also in love with Marusya and a hidden competion emerges between the two.

Marusya is doubtful about the love relatio with the royal count named Leshek Chinsky. Chinsky is dressed impressingly has a good manners and all in village is amazed with his strange affair with the village orphan Marusya.

Chinsky fells in love so strongly that he makes even an offer to Marusya to which of course Marusya is doubtful. The family of count Chinsky is against the relation and does its best to cancel the untrustful and unequal relations between his royal song and the village girl.

In mean time the waiter guy named Zanek who is also after Marusya and wants her hand. Marusya dates Zanek 2 times and partly she things this relation could end up even with a marriage but her heart is still with the county.

Because the the improsed shop datings between count Chinsky and Marusya are continuing publicly among his friends Zanek led by his envy for not having Marusya's heart publicly insults her and accuses her of her secret sexual relation with the count as Chinsky becomes accidently witness of the mockery he stands on Marusya's side and rejects the badfull lies of Zanek ending up beating him publicly because of his blatant and improer behavior and shortly after he makes official marriage offer to Marusya in the small grocery store.
The two them ride on Chinsky's motorcycle (noone in village has a motorcycle as all are poor), as they ride near a small lake and share their feelings for each other Zanek is drunk and in want for revenge, so he puts a chunk of tree on a bridge hoping to kill Chinsky. 

For his amusement and misfortune Chinsky is riding with Marusya on the back of the cycle and because of the three both fall in a crash and both are in a state near death.

Zanek understanding his fault and scared for his soul being endangered to have been worthy for eternal hell because of the killing quickly takes the two injured and unconscious lovers to the quack Anthony as a last hope for help.

Anthony seeing the two patients and understanding his ability to fully manage the dying persons and scared about possibility to be responsible for the death of the lovers quickly calls for a conventional doctor for help.
Doctor Pavlickij comes but again consumed for his arrogance and the unequal state in society of the two gives his best to heal Chinsky and is not too willful to heal the poor village girl Marusya.

In the mean time Anthony manage to help the count and for the luck of the count his state is much better and he is about to recover, where on the countrary Marusya is in a state of dying with a bone being stuck in her brain.

Anthony asks the doctor for an a help and all Pavlickij does is to give her a heart support injection and he leaves.
Anthony seeing the surgeon instruments in Pavlickij and with no hope for a surgery intervention from the coventional doctor, remembers his professor surgeon skills and decides steals the doctors instruments and makes a perfect operation removing the bone out of the brain of the young lady.

In morning the operation makes clear it is perfectly made and the Marusya comes to a conscious perfectly normal in mind. As she is now jobless for leaving the shop for her offer for marriage she stays to live with Propop's family.

Soon Pavlickij finds out his surgeon instruments are gone and comes hearing about the successful operation to Marusya suspects about the steal by Anthony and comes with a police.
The quack is an honest man so he confesses about the steal but he explains the steal with the need for the immediate operation.

The police catch the stealer and there is a quick court session to whom he is judged to stay 3 years in prison.
In mean time count Chinsky managed to recover completely being sent in Switzerland and is travelling back with train back to Poland hopeless because told by his family that Marusya is dead and convinced that life is meaningless without the love of Marusya. The count decides for a love suicide and writes a suicide letter to his family asking one of the servents to hand it in to his family and preparing to kill himself with a gun.

By the providence he leads a small talk with the servent person by whom he finds out that Marusya did not die but live in Prokops family.

Being shocked he takes a carret going out of the train and hurries to Prokops family with a large bucket of roses.

The two lovers bind together and they soon marry. As a way to thank Anthony Cassiba, count Chinsky and his family (which finds out about the suicidal intentions of their son and finally agree for the marriage), hire a bunch of experts to inspect the professional surgeon lead by Anthony and to defend him in court once again trying to release him.

Again by providence the expert which does evaluated Anthony's operation who has to confirm the success of the operation over Marusya, happens to be one one of professor Rafal Vilchur (now living under the namy of Anthony) and in the middle of trial he hears by Marusya's testimony the family name of Marusya which is also Vilchur.

At that moment the surgeon expert and ex-colleague recognizes his missing for 15+ years professor  and colleague Rafal and identifies him. professor Rafal Vilchur finds out the young lady he just operated is his lost daughter and he is crying out of joy.

The movie is a touching one and shows a lot of how people used to live in the age before technology and electricity took over human life.
It has a deep meaning and a charge of good and the happy end in the movie makes it so different from a lot of the modern especially American movies, which nowadays end up with a messy and unclear ends without any moral to get out of it.


Watch the 2 series movie below and enjoy I promise you will not regret you watch it I promise ! 🙂


Here is a link to Quack in IMDB the IMDB movie rating is quite high 7.9.

Share this on

Install JBL Go Bluetooth Speaker on Debian GNU / Linux and Ubuntu

Thursday, August 24th, 2017


Here is how to configure a JBL Go Bluetooth (Wireless) speaker and presumably other Bluetooth external speakers to Debian GNU / Linux Wheezy 7 and Ubuntu 14.04 . 1. Install following bunch of deb packages

debian:~# apt-get install pulseaudio pulseaudio-module-bluetooth pavucontrol bluez-firmware

Here it is notable to mention pavucontrol if you have previously played more extensively on GNU / Linux you should have already used if not it is really cozy volume control tool with a lot of tuning options regarding pulseaudio stream server. Considering that like me you're using a GNOME as a desktop environment you will also need gnome-bluetooth package, e.g.:

debian:~# apt-get install gnome-bluetooth

As Pulseaudio is used as a sound streaming server in GNU / Linux (assuming your Debian version is using it you'll also need to have installed pulseaudio-module-bluetooth)

debian:~# apt-get install pulseaudio-module

For Ubuntu 14.04 GNU / Linux users the list of necessery bluetooth packages is a bit longer, if you're on this OS go and install:

debian:~# apt-get install bluez bluez-alsa bluez-audio bluez-btsco bluez-compat bluez-cups bluez-dbg bluez-gstreamer bluez-hcidump bluez-pcmcia-support bluez-tools bluez-utils python-bluez bluewho indicator-bluetooth libbluetooth-dev libgnome-bluetooth11 libbluetooth3 python-gobject python-dbus

Moreover you will need pulseaudio-module-bluetooth deb package installed in order to be able to select the desired sound output.

Next it is time to restart Bluetooth service

debian:~# service bluetooth restart
[ ok ] Stopping bluetooth: rfcomm /usr/sbin/bluetoothd.
[ ok ] Starting bluetooth: bluetoothd rfcomm.

It is also a good idea to restart pulseaudio snd streaming server in order to load the newly installed pulseaudio bluetooth module settings, to do so issue:

debian:~# killall pulseaudio

And try to establish connection from Gnome-Bluetooth to the JBL Go (press the JBL Go bluetooth button) and search from the Linux bluetooth interface, once founded connect it.



Before JBL Go appears to list listable blootooth devices you will also need to run following command:

debian:~# pactl load-module module-bluetooth-discover

This command is to connect bluetooth discovered JBL Go device to the audio sink interface.

It is generally idea to add this line also to /etc/rc.local to make the setting permanently executed on every Linux boot.

Now you can launch pavucontrol and hopefully the JBL GO bluetooth speaker should be visible as an option, check out my below screenshot:


In case you further experience issues connecting the Bluetooth Speaker I would recommend to check out this Debian a2dp page at the end of the page are troubleshooting suggestions.


Refused to switch profile to a2dp_sink: Not connected

Bluetooth headset is connected, but ALSA/PulseAudio fails to pick up the connected device or there's no device to pick. This happens because GDM captures A2DP sink on session start, as GDM needs pulseaudio in the gdm session for accessibility. For example, the screen reader requires it. See 805414 for some discussion.


Workaround 1: disable pulseaudio in gdm

In order to prevent GDM from capturing the A2DP sink on session start, edit /var/lib/gdm3/.config/pulse/client.conf (or create it, if it doesn't exist):


autospawn = no
daemon-binary = /bin/true

After that you have to grant access to this file to Debian-gdm user:


chown Debian-gdm:Debian-gdm /var/lib/gdm3/.config/pulse/client.conf

You will also need to disable pulseaudio startup:


rm /var/lib/gdm3/.config/systemd/user/

In order to auto-connect a2dp for some devices, add this to /etc/pulse/


load-module module-switch-on-connect

Logout your Desktop environment and restart gdm3 /etc/init.d/gdm3 restart or Reboot the PC and then it should be fine.


Now the sound device (bluetooth headset) should be accessible through pavucontrol and standard audio device manager.


Workaround 2: disable pulseaudio's bluetooth in gdm

The actual solution package maintainers are looking into next is to simply disable the bluetooth sink in the gdm pulseaudio daemon so that it doesn't take over the device. Add this to /var/lib/gdm3/.config/pulse/


#!/usr/bin/pulseaudio -nF

# load system wide configuration
.include /etc/pulse/

### unload driver modules for Bluetooth hardware
  unload-module module-bluetooth-policy

  unload-module module-bluetooth-discover

Though this article explains how to connect a bluetooth speaker connecting Bluetooth Speaker to GNU / Linux is done in analogous way


Share this on

Play the Dangerous Dave old arcade classic on iPhone, iPad and Android Smartphone – Dangerous Dave 1990’s computer arcade classic Mario like game phone Application

Thursday, April 27th, 2017


I still remember the good old times with my 16 Bit Desktop Personal Computer Parvetz 8086 CPU where one of the most favourite games I used to play a computer substitute for Mario for DOS operation system was Dangerous Dave 2 (DDAVE.EXE) an arcade game classic game from the distant year 1990 authored by a whiz kid which later become world famous Computer game Programmer John Romero mostly known for being a cofounder of Game creation comppany ID Software  which authored the 3D Shooter genesis classics such as Wolfenstein 3D, Spear of Destiny, DOOM I and DOOM II HeXen I / II, QUAKE I,  QUAKE II, QUAKE II as well as some absolute arcade classics as Commander Keen 4 🙂

As John Romero shared himsef the game is actually inspired by Super Mario Bros so he decided to create a kinda of computer remake of the game in his teenage years and he did a great job yeah 🙂

There are similarities between Super Mario and Dangerous Dave as both have  the secret levels, the level design, the monsters, and the jump all around collecting cups with a final aim to end up in the level exit door.

The game was originally developed for Apple II and later reworked and ported to DOS and because of it is immerse popularity Dave 2, 3 and 4 come out short

The game is really awesome and worths all praise, I was nicely surprised to find out Dangerous Dave amazing game is available for Iphone 5, 5S and Iphone 6 right into Appstore

Here is the awesome Dangerous DAVE Iphone port description:

"Dave is a redneck on a rampage to reclaim his stolen trophies from the town bully, Clyde! Dangerous Dave is back in his classic adventure in the Deserted Pirate's Hideout. This recreation of the original 1990 DOS game is just as action-packed and difficult as the original! There are only 10 levels, but, wow, are they hard. "


I have to say the game controls are pretty much amazing and the game controls even though reimplemented on the Iphone touch screen device are truly amazing so gameplay resembles pretty much the Computer original game keyboard controls and in a sense the touch screen controls are a little bit more convenient.

The iOS Dave port is pretty nice and updated version is also available which is possible to be chosen on Game entry screen so you either play classic mode or you play the Dave in the Deserted pirated hideout updated version and sound Dave remake, below is a screenshot of the updated GUI version:


Dave in the deserted pirate hideout Updated GUI shot by Alfonso Romero – level 1


Dave in the deserted pirate hideout Updated GUI shot by Alfonso Romero – level 2


Actually Dangerous Dave is also available for Android Smartphone devices even though the controllers suck a lot compared to the Iphone version if you happen to own an Android OS phone check here 

For those who don't own an Iphone or Android SmartPhone (lucky you) you can also play Dangerous Dave online via DOSBox Web emulation from this URL


For those who prefer to play Dangerous Dave as a standalone desktop application as in the good old times on Windows 7 / 8, 8.1 and Windows 10 both on 32 and 64 bits platform you can download it (as of moment of writting article) from here

A mirrored version of Dangerous Dave for Windows 7/8/10 on in case if it disappears in future check here.

Our generation people born in 1983-1986 who are now about 33 years old has grown up with this game and I'm pretty sure if you happen to be one of those people will truly enjoy to replay the quick 10 game levels and remind the fuzzy computer arcade games age when every growing kid like me was obsessed with the idea to play and complete as much as games possible with countless nights in front of the Green and Black screen and later on SVGA screens geeking on and on loosing idea of time and space and being completely sunk by the game.


Happy gaming ! 🙂

Share this on

Trip to Balckhik Sea Resort City, Saint George Church Liturgy and The Palace Sea Garden of the Romanian Queen

Wednesday, May 11th, 2016


Last Sunday 08.05.2016, we travelled with my beloved friend Elica on Opel Astra car (The so called Police Opel as this opel is well known in Bulgaria because it is the most used car by Police forces in Bulgaria. The distance  from Dobrich to Balchik Sea Town is very near (by car its only 31.5 km).
Nearby Balchik situated in 20-30 km, there are plenty of other uniquely beatiful Sea resorts, just to name a few Albena, Kranevo, Golden Sands, Kavarna.

From Balchik Seacoast it is visible Albena's remote shore, which is one of favourite tourist destination for Russian and one of the most famous tourist resort in Bulgaria are visible. What makes Balchik a great place to visit is also its unique and rich history, the city was inhibited more than 2500+ years ago, according to Herodotus in 585 – 550 year B.C.


Balchik's history is very dramaticit was of the important sea cities to control by Thracians (during Thracian Empire) later by  Romans, conseqnently by Greeks in Byzantine times and since the creation of Bulgaria in year 681 by Bulgarians (during first and second Bulgarian Kingdom) and under Turkish Slavery 1396-1878 by Turks (during Ottoman Turkish Empire), then after the liberation again by Bulgarians, during the Balkan wars controlled by Romanians as part of Romania and finally since September 7 1940 after the restoration of Southern Dobrudzha region to Bulgaria again part of Re-United Bulgaria.

Once reaching Balchik, we attended Sunday Holy Liturgy in the Saint George majestic Church which on a first looks by its size gives the observer the impression of a small Eastern Cathedral Cathedral. On this date it was the Sunday of the Doubting Thomas the last day of the so called Bright week (the first week after Eastern Orthodox Pascha).

The service was amazingly beautiful with ac choire of only few ladies headed for my surprise by a non-Bulgarian (Belarusian) chorister lady Svetlana. The serving priest Father Stratia is a really tall and ascetic looking priest by the way he served the service and he prayed it was evident he possess a deep faith in God and perhaps a true heart relationship with Christ. The Church is full of icons and has a very unique iconostatis which by the words of the priest is the most unique Church iconostasis made by a Russian person and is the most unique and beatiful Church craftwork in the whole Dobrich region.


Saint George Eastern Orthodox Church Entrance – Balchik Sea City Resort, Bulgaria

The Russian influence in the Church is also evident by the many icons of well known Russian saints such as Saint John of Kronstadt, Saint Seraphim Seravski, Saint Xenia from Peterburg, Saint Matriona from Moscow, Saint King Vladimir etc. etc. Also it is very remembering experience in this Church the high number of different icons of saint George, many of which are well known and miracle making from Mount Athos (Fanailova) icon etc.


Saint George Eastern Orthodox Church Alter – Balchik, Bulgaria

After the end of the Church service we had a walk through a piece of old stone strairs which are common for Balchik.


At the end of the service he blessed and wished a lot of "brightness and love" for the coming week and we went down from Balchik city center through a beautiful old stone stairs leading down to the Seacoast and Balchik's beach.


We spend some time on the coffee waiting for Mitko and Samuil to drop by because we had agreed the previous day to travel by Mitko's Citroen C3 Pluriel (tutle sized car) from Balchik to Sofia.

Nearby the sea coast as in most of resorts there is a line with caffeterias and restaurands with a nice view facing the sea and a remote tiny mountain hights.
Balchik and the region is one of the most beautiful and green locations all around Dobrudja region with a beatiful plants, trees, herbs, woods. There are also few springs mineral drinable water in and nearby Balchik and the town is also famous for the healing mud center and many thermal springs of Tuzlata.

The temperature of the health water is 33 degrees centigrade; it is without color, low mineralized, and has excellent gustatory properties. The curative mud which comes from two firth lakes is dark brown, coarse-grained and has perfect physic-chemical properties. Near to the lakes there is a balneological center. Using the healing properties of the mug, good results have been reported on the treatment of gynecological, nervous diseases, diseases of the locomotory system and so on.

Balchik Tuzlata healing mud for recovering from and healing all kind of neurological, psycho-emotional and other diseases.


Perhaps the most famous and worthy thing to see in Balchik is Baclhik Palace (Dvoretz Balchik) which was constructed during 1926 – 1937  for the rest needs of the Romanian Queen during romanian control of the region in communist years of Bulgaria (1945 – 1989) and onwards it was reorganized to become one of the major and biggest Botanical garden in Bulgaria and is famous as Balchiks Botanical Garden exposing the largest collection of large cactuses in Bulgaria arranged in 1000 m2, the second biggest collection of Cactuses following after the one in Monaco.


Few Cactuses shot – Balchik Botanical Garden Second Largest Botanical Garden in Europe


View to a Roman Catholic Chapel in Balchik Garden

The current Balchik Botanical garden has area of 65,000 m² and accommodates 2000 plant species belonging to 85 families and 200 genera a similar garden but smaller garden was build in Vrana's Bulgarian King Palace nearby Sofia


The garden is absolutely unique to see mixing together architectural characteristics for Balkans and oriental motifs such as from Islam the garden was build by Italian architects Augustino and Americo and the overall arrangement of the Palace was made by a Swiss frorist.


The main Palace building's extravagant minaret coexists with a Christian chapel, perfectly illustrating the queen's Bahá'í beliefs.


A virtual tour of Balchik Palace check is on the official site of Palace here


Though Balchik is only about 10000 to 12000 of citizens it is the second largest town in Dobrich region, rich for historical reason in diverse culture and architecture.

Below is a small chunk of the many interesting old historical things the lover of beauty can enjoy.


Though it is a little in size it has obsiouly rich citizen spirituality as the city has 5 Churches 4 of which in active service.


Saint Nicolas Church built in Liberation of Bulgaria period


Another unique beatiful Eastern Orthodox Church to visit if you happen to be in Balchik is Saint Petka Tarnovska Church

Balchik is situated on a steep hills thus, the roads are а bit uneven like in mountains, one can see in city center also some builtiful 'bulgarian renesanse' buildings left from 19th century architecture in the famous for that time Austrian / Italian Architecture.


As Balchik is small in size it is perfect for people who want to have rest in a cozy town and still have all conveniences of a beach resort. The overall feeling of being in Balchik is like in a small Italian sea town with the only difference that the prices of food and drinks in Balchik are quite affordable if compared to Western Europe resorts. A four people meal with some small drinks nearby see would be cheap like 40-50 euro.

Share this on

Use mac PC built-in camera to make / take pictures on Mac OS X macbookair notebook with Photo Booth

Friday, February 26th, 2016


It seems we lost our Good high quality Digital Camera somewhere and I was in need urgently to make a good quality photo (my ZTE Phone) has a very bad camera, so I got the idea to use Macbookair's camera as it has better
resolution to picture my present a  Tank Tort 🙂 hand made by my wife as a present for the Day of the Defender of the Fatherland which is a major feast in Russia, Belarus and many of the ex-Soviet Union members communist countries.

Actually using build in camare in MacBookAir is a handy thing for people mising at the moment a good high quality digital camera as it is thin and light and build in MacBook cam can be used to make Videos and Pictures exactly the same way
as an ordinary Tablet Computer is used so commonly nowadays by many:

In other words I needed for the Mac OS X equivalent to Cheese's (Photo and Video) capturer program for Linux.

Luckily for people interested in using their Mac OS notebook as a amateur camera this is easy by using default shipped Mac Application called:

Photo Booth app

To Launch Photo Booth app it just look it up in Finder and double click it:


Clicking the large red button underneath the preview area will take a picture after an optional countdown.

Tort Tank of Svetka

Besides being able to capture Video and Pictures from Mac's camera it could add also some nice effects to taken pictures and videos (supports a basic video editing) features and effects.

The effects you can choose are are: Sepia, Black and White, Glow, Comic Book, Normal, Colored Pencil, Thermal Camera, X-Ray, and Pop Art. There are also effects that change the person in the picture using these effects: Bulge, Dent, Twirl, Squeeze, Mirror, Light Tunnel, Fish Eye, and Stretch. Actually  photographic filters of Photo Booth are very similar to Adobe Photoshop.

By default Photo Booth will create picture, howver

Photo Booth saves your photos as JPEG files in a folder named Photo Booth, located in your home folder.

Choose File > Reveal in Finder

to see your picture files.

A much better way to be able to easily see and access all taken Pictures and Videos with Photo Booth is to


open Terminal


and type:



$ cd Pictures
$ ln -s Photo\ Booth\ Library/Pictures/ PhotoBoothPics

This will make Link to pictures be easily accessible from your Finder -> Pictures folder
Applying custom photo backgrounds

A very useful feature of Photo Booth is that the user can apply backdrops to provide an effect similar to a green screen. When a backdrop is selected, a message appears telling the user to step away from the camera. Once the background is analyzed, the user steps back in front of the camera and is shown in front of the chosen backdrop.

For people who prefer to take photos using a console program on Mac OS I guess you should take a look at ffpeg
Here is one more snapshot of the Tort Tank snapshot made with the Macbookair of Svetlana 🙂

Tort Tank

P.S. If you like the Tort Tank and you happen to live in Sofia Bulgaria, you can order it  by dropping me a comment with request 🙂

Enjoy ! 🙂

Share this on