First week iOS 12 stats

No big surprises. I heart RSS and use Reddit and Twitter for entertainment.


What are these?

Spotted a bunch of antennas on the streetlight today:

Looks like three pairs of antennas, in three sizes. Hillcrest neighborhood, one block from the DMV. Anyone?


The US Air Force’s largest plane transported a billion dollar satellite — Quartz

Most importantly, and expensively, it can survive a nuclear strike. Atomic explosions release bursts of electrical energy that can fry computers, even in orbit. This satellite is hardened to pass through such energy blasts unscathed. More than that, if the satellite loses touch with its control system on the ground, it can operate autonomously, continuing to provide service to its users. It’s the kind of communications network that sends a message of deterrence just by existing, since it would (presumably) survive a nuclear first strike. Au, proud of his work, scoffed a bit at the attention received by autonomous drone and car companies. His vehicle is operating at the real technological frontier.

A superb long-form piece from Quartz, perhaps the most impressive I’ve read from them. Worth your time.

via The US Air Force’s largest plane transported a billion dollar satellite — Quartz

Random Uncategorized

Taiwanese blue magpie


via reddit. Damn. The picture of a lifetime, no?

More info on Wikipedia.


Power and energy consumption

I built a system that uses a ‘Raven’ Zigbee USB radio and Raspberry Pi to monitor our SDG&E electric meter, and layered Flask and D3.js on top to display usage.

Sometimes it looks quite cool:

Screenshot 2018-07-18 07.21.01.png

The baseline for the house is 225 to 250W, and the plateaus are the (high efficiency energy star) refrigerator. You can see where I got up, turned on lights and cooked breakfast, too. (Electric range and kettle.)

I’m pretty pleased with our usage and have put quite a bit of effort into reducing our consumption. LED bulbs, of course, but also low power servers and networking (61 watts total!), timer switches on idling electronics and measuring what things use. In-wall insulation is also a huge win year-round.

The code is at this GitHub repo if you want to roll your own.

It’s a weekend or two, but if you’re willing to puzzle it out, the data is nice and it’s purely local – no internet connection needed, no holes in your firewall, no sharing of the data. A few minutes reading should be convincing on why that’s worthwhile.



Go’n breakdown

Obscure lyric but an awesome song by the way…

Check this: I’m on my way to an early meeting with some senior managers at work, having been asked by my boss to attend in his stead. A medium to big deal. So of course my impeccably maintained Piaggio dies, in the fast lane, partway there. Here I sit, blogging away.

I’m religious about maintaining it and this is the second time it’s died on the road.

Amazingly it was literally and actually last night that I was test driving an electric car. Heckuva coincidence eh?


Flopstarter | A platform for bad ideas

A platform for bad ideas
— Read on

The world needs this.


It’s 2018 and I still need fsck

File this under “Really?”

That’s my wife’s laptop, spending an hour rebuilding the file system after it got corrupted. I had to know the command-v boot trick and video record it booting (!) to see the error fly by before it auto rebooted, then boot recovery, open a terminal and run fsck with a -r.

Ain’t no way a random user could manage it. Apple! Bash some bugs would ya?

Random recommendations

Zero DS-R

Took a test ride today. Was initially thinking Zero S, but I much preferred the upright stance on the DS. Awesome bike and damn near silent.

More than enough range for my commute and work has free charging. Not too heavy, easy to ride, very zippy and easy to maneuver. Me like.


Weekend plans might include…


Fingers crossed!