Migration, mobility and COVID-19 – A tale of many tales

S-SAM grantee Amanda Bisong wrote up some initial thoughts on migration and Covid-19. Read the blogpost here.

The crisis sparked by the COVID-19 pandemic has overshadowed existing migration debates in Europe, yet is inextricably linked with mobility and movement and its governance within the EU and globally. The current situation reveals the complexities of migration debates, pushing aside current, unearthing old and raising new questions.

Read/write access for Samba/cfis drive remotely using GNU/Linux

I’ve had some issues with accessing a remote network drive: I didn’t have the permission to write on the network drive, even though I should. Changing the permissions manually would have worked, but that seemed like the wrong approach. I didn’t log into this particular drive for a while, so I figured my mount options were probably incorrect. Turns out (as usual) that the solution was to set the uid option:

mkdir -p ~/mnt/remote_username

sudo mount -t cifs -o user=remote_username,domain=domain.com,uid=local_username //home/remote_username$ ~/mnt/remote_username

Visualize correlations in R

There are rare cases when a graphic is not better than a figure to help us understand our quantitative results. A simple yet common table we’re staring at ever so often are tables of correlation coefficients: how strongly do different variables correlate with one another. We’re scanning the tables for numbers close to +1 and close to -1, but there’s a better way: visualize!

The R package corrplot offers a ready-made solution:

library(corrplot)
dat=matrix(c(0.11128257, -0.38968561, 0.11765272, -0.07089879, -0.19715366, -0.48083950, 0.54760745, -0.49410370, -0.42443391), nrow=3)
corrplot(dat)

Here we call the corrplot package, create some data so that we can plot something, normally this would be a selection of variables. Then we simply call corrplot() and we’re done.

There are many ways to tweak the plots, but in all versions we get a quicker and better overview of the variables that correlate than staring at a large table.

Here are some variants of the above:

par(mfrow=c(2,2))
corrplot(dat, method = "shade")
corrplot(dat, diag=FALSE)
corrplot(dat, method = "square")
corrplot(dat, method = "number")

Jitsi on GNU/Linux

We’re currently using Jitsi a lot, an open-source video conferencing solution. On my GNU/Linux machine running Ubuntu, I had issues with using it on Firefox, using up all the CPU and blocking/freezing after a while. Solution: it works fine on Chromium.