Things, Stuff, and Random Thoughts

My Blog

  • The idea was to make a diy version of this monster book from harry potter.   The one they used in the movie is probably a several thousand $ remote control robot but with the right parts I think we can get something close that jumps around or wiggles a bit. Before I started this project I looked around online and found several tutorials on how to decorate a monster book but none on making one move. So here is my version...     So there are 2 parts to making a good monster book putting some electronic guts inside the book for the motion decorating the outside of the book to look like a monster ( I did not decorate

    Posted on September, at 16,
  • Update .... I have since entered this project into 2 hardware contests here     and here I'm also in the process of sourcing parts for version 2 with the smaller raspberry pi zero and smaller power supply   The problem - Security cameras are still complicated to install, setup, and use. Most require a technician or a handful of frustrating calls to various tech support places. And the average person may still not be able to see a video feed outside of their local home network. 2 primary components that all video cameras require are power and data. For medium to higher end setups this means running cables. Even cams that have Wi-Fi still require a power source that better

    Posted on August, at 22,
  • A future relative of Apple's siri and Microsoft's cortana will replace the majority of people for customer service call center jobs. There are a number of innovations currently under way that will conspire to make this possible. Think about it, a lot of time when you call customer service today the call is already being answered by an automated system that tries to router you to the right place. These automated systems are just a few years away from being sufficiently smart enough to do a lot more than just route your call. In no particular order here are some thoughts on it: Skype can translate voice calls in real time between people. Understanding natural language won't be a problem

    Posted on April, at 3,
  • This is the 3rd time I have rebuilt my website. It has gone thru a few iterations. This time around I started with deciding to rebuild my vps hosted with digital ocean. Before I had just used the ubuntu image with WordPress included. The problem that is that it runs with Apache instead of nginx. After running that setup for a year it kept crashing every few weeks both on the $5 droplet and the $10 droplet. To compound things I actually run WordPress Multi-site so I was really maxing out the limited memory available on the small droplets. The solution was to switch to nginx. Running wordpress ontop of nginx you can squeeze a lot more performance from a

    Posted on January, at 23,
    cloudflare, easyengine, hosting
  • I recently got to repair a broken Panasonic Plasma TV It was much trickier than I expected. I have replaced power boards before in Vizio’s but they were LCD The first this I did was plug it in and turn it on to confirm the 10 red blinks. Then I took the back cover off to see if any caps were blown. There did not appear to be any bad spots. To the internet… I searched the model number to see what would come up. I use duckduckgo instead of google or bing. A few things come up notably some videos on youtube about how to fix a bad power board but those videos were for older models of TV.

    Posted on February, at 8,
    fix it, hardware
  • This project started with a customer bring me 2 kindle 3rd generation e readers want one fixed. His original was dropped and broke the power switch. The other one he bought for parts it had a broken screen. The other difference between the 2 devices besides the broken parts was the original was a 3g model and the broken screen one was WiFi only model. I didn’t know that until after I had them apart. The 3g model is also one they bought while over seas. So I popped some covers open to see what I could do. The first ideas was to try to replace just the power switch but that didn’t work because the power button is integrated into some

    Posted on January, at 8,
    fix it, hardware