10.43252003274489856000 reasons why "X reasons Y" lists are boring

The barrage of sites with mind-numbingly stupid content and clickbait titles is neither new nor exhilarating.

However, ad-mongering, for the lack of a better word, and short-shorter-shortest attention spans of people, when paired with the ubiquity of technological access has made them garishly visible and overwhelming, sometimes to the point of frustration, and oftentimes, far beyond.

Here's a list of reasons why these word-bundles posing as "articles" are a force of evil. Also, the mandatory "You won't believe number 7!"
  1. Their titles offer little to no information about the actual content.
  2. Their content is usually unnecessary at best.
  3. Oversimplifications are not just made and brushed over, but celebrated.
  4. They are mostly opinion-pieces, with the opinion being "I am better than you" or "Yoohoo, You get a stereotype, you get a stereotype, everybody gets a stereotype! There's enough for everyone."
  5. The primary purpose of these articles is to entice with a title that tugs at heartstrings of potential readers, so that their clicks help earn ad revenue.
  6. The secondary purpose is to reinforce biases, stereotypes and self-indulgence.
  7. For some reason, a vast section of the populace believe other people share their biases and would love to read fluff pieces of no consequence.
  8. Most use cringeworthy images/gifs they don't hold the rights to publish.
  9. The authors are often deluded enough to think they have invested this new awesome format no one ever though of.
  10. The grammar is, well, horrendous on most occasions.
Notable trivia:
  • This post has the highest number of quotes I have ever had, scare or otherwise. If one chooses to be pedantic, yes, I mean quotation marks. There, there...
  • The list is 0.43252003274489856000 items shorter than the title. So Sue Me.
  • 43252003274489856000 is the total number of possible combinations on a standard Rubik's Cube.
P.S. I think "notable trivia" is an oxymoron, but I've been wrong before. 

Automatic headphone detection in Alienware M17xR4 for openSUSE Leap 42.1

All to often, people dismiss Linux if something tiny doesn't work out of the box. They claim that one does not face such problems in Windows, forgetting the extensive jumping through hoops known as installing a bunch of drivers that negates the whole "out of the box" premise.

I had just gotten a fresh install of openSUSE Edu Li-f-e, based on Leap 42.1, running on the behemoth that is Alienware M17xR4. All seemed fine until I realised that plugging a headphone into the relevant jack does not reroute the sound output through the headphones, while the speakers keep blasting away.

Pulseaudio, or rather pavucontrol, was helpful enough to switch between line-out and headphones on cue within the GUI, albeit with little effect, as the sound output remained unaffected.



The situation wasn't too different with the KDE's "Audio Volume" module, which largely seems to be a front end to pulseaudio.

As I was bungling through the settings, I realised that the issue wasn't detection of headphones, as it was the switching audio output from the speakers to  the headphone.

Enter, alsa!

alsamixer has a particularly unhelpful welcome display, which has no bearing on the level of customisability it offers.

AlsaMixer intro screen

We can, however, get much better controls, once we manually select the sound card (Press F6).
Note: If you fail to find the option for the given sound card, See Note 1 at the bottom of the post.

AlsaMixer - select sound card

We then navigate to the  HP/Speaker Auto Detect (in red in the image below) and toggle to ON (by pressing M).

AlsaMixer - change HP/Speaker Auto Detect

If you get stuck along the way,  help is just an F1 away.

Help menu for AlsaMixer

Note 1:

If you fail to find the option for the given sound card, add the line 
options snd-hda-intel model=alienware at the end of the file /etc/modprobe.d/50-alsa.conf .
If the file does not exist, look through the folder /etc/modprobe.d/ to check if any similar file exists with a different number preceding it, and edit the same.

Note 2:

Packages used:
alsa-1.0.29-10.1.x86_64
pulseaudio-7.0-3.1.x86_64
pavucontrol-3.0-5.3.x86_64


Note 3:

There are multiple audio jacks in the M17xR4, so for the above process to work the headphone/ext. speaker needs to be plugged into the jack shown below

Audio jack in Alienware M17xR4 for auto headphone detection

openSUSE tweets