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halfblind

Over the past many months, I have been having a harder and harder time seeing to read (and I spend 80+% of my waking hours reading). I wasn’t really consciously aware that anything was wrong, but I did find that I’d take out my contact lens far more often, I had all my devices set to dark backgrounds, and I was spending more time in my darkened room. I would also get terribly fatigued when I read for more than a few minutes (which, generally, meant all the time). I was getting increasingly behind in reading and responding to email. After months of things getting gradually worse, I realized suddenly that I couldn’t read at all without a lot of squinting and straining.

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tesla charger radius enhancer

I wired my garage to charge my Tesla (coming soon—solar charging!), but I didn’t like the charger cable dangling on the floor. I installed a tool balancer to manage the cable, and it worked great but puts a bit of strain on the cable by bending it where it leaves the plug. It’s not much, but I worry about damaging the cable over a period of years.

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Tesla II

Back in December I posted about buying a used Tesla Model S, musing that I wouldn’t have to buy gas again. O, hubris! I loved the car — for eight days. Early on the ninth, Christmas Eve, I was driving to pick up some food for Christmas dinner. It was still dark. It was foggy and rainy. I was driving slowly on familiar streets. I’m still not sure what happened, but there was a big bang! and the car was on the center divider.

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last gas

Back in April I decided to put down a deposit on a Tesla Model 3. When my number came up, though, the price for even a minimally-configured unit was far more than I was willing to pay, so I put off the purchase.

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cameras, cheap and cool

A recent article in TidBITS announced that the $20 WyzeCam Security Camera Is Almost Too Good to Be True. Joshua has been having a lot of fun with security cameras lately. He converted some old phones into surveillance equipment using Haven and Alfred. But $20 for a full-function dedicated camera just seemed like a deal we couldn’t pass up.

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thought innovation

Sometimes, it’s simple things. We’re surrounded by wonders like smart phones and miracle drugs, but sometimes innovation can come entirely from just thinking about a problem differently. If you took an iPhone X 30 years into the past, it wouldn’t do much. Oh, it might be a shiny curiosity, but its function would be limited. Nor would someone in 1988 be able to disassemble it, discover its “secret” and make more of them: the main secret is layer upon layer upon layer of incremental improvements in processor design, chip fabrication, wireless technologies, display mechansims, battery capacities, operating system architecuture… the list goes on and on.

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new bed

My old bed cost, I think, about $1,500 and was too big — Caper and I rattled around in it. It was also over 10 years old. I got a Wirecutter recommendation for a compressed foam mattress that you can order online and it comes in a relatively tiny box — for less than $300. Uncrate it, and over a day or two it expands to a full 12″ deep mattress. I bought one for Matthew, and he liked it, so I decided to upgrade (and downsize) my own bed. Continue reading

printer filament shelf rack brackets

I’ve started running out of space for my collection of 3D printer filament. I found this cool polished black PVC pipe on Amazon and printed some brackets to mount it on the wall. The spools nest out of the way between the pipe and the wall. Continue reading

cheap phones

A year or so ago, I was looking for a new phone. I had been using a Google Nexus 6 for two years, ever since I became a beta tester for Project Fi. I loved Project Fi (Google is eversomuch cooler than any other cellular carrier/MVNO in the US), but getting timely updates—even security updates—for the Nexus was like pulling teeth, and they dropped support for what had been their flagship phone barely a year after I bought it. Add to that the fact that there’s no effective private backup solution for Android devices, and I didn’t have any real choice. I had an old iPhone 5 that I had owned for maybe four years, and it was still running the latest version of iOS with all the security updates delivered instantly, while my three-years-newer Android was a security breach waiting to happen.

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garden fresh

The garden is growing, and I was able to harvest almost enough basil to make a batch of pesto. Even though I had to add some commercial leaves, it still tasted better (in my mind?) than when everything comes from the store.

Yum.

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