My basil cuttings have successfully grown new roots! I hope to have fresh lazy* hydroponic pesto all winter.

* The Kratky hydroponic setup is basically just a tote with a hole in the top for a root cup. No bubblers or pumps needed; the plants make their own air pockets by drinking up the water/nutrient blend.

recaptcha loathing 

Whoever has this mailbox, I love you. When the murder robots take over, you'll be safe as they will be unable to enter your driveway.

I created an account, replied to a topic, edited that reply, and posted a new topic.

Here's my notifications.

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3d printer hacking 

Using my partner's arduino uno to flash a bootloader on to the control board of my Ender 3, so I can update the firmware with a more up-to-date open source version.

It all worked out, with the only snag being that Windows is pretty bad at "USB Serial" ports.

Now my printer has thermal runaway protection, so if the thermistor fails in the hotend my house won't burn down.

electronics / music project 

Much more complicated model for this newbie: a drum trigger clip. It's for an project - sound-reactive RGB LED strips for my band. This holds a piezo sensor against the drum head; an clone will read that and decide what lights to flash for how long. I'm the first attempt now.

The hardest part? The hole for the piezo's wire, which goes through the arm at an angle not perpendicular to any edge.

First success at from dry soy beans. I didn't have a press so I used the bag I made the soy milk in, which turns out to make extremely firm tofu. Accidentally made yuba along the way, so I know that can work, too. Starting yet more beans to do a dry run of from-scratch () tomorrow... Going to be sick of making soy milk by the end of the week, I'm certain.

food (garden) 

Sudden freezing tonight meant rushing around the yard collecting the last harvests. Here's a big pile of half-ripe anaheim peppers. I planted them far too late but the yield in the IBC containers was impressive. This is from two plants.

food+, alc+ 

30 gallons of apples off the two trees in my yard, destined to become about 8 gallons of cider. That's on top of the 5 gallons I made a month ago... 2018 was a really good year for apples, at least around here.


Homemade night. Left: homemade sauce (grew the tomatoes and the oregano), whole wheat crust, soy milk mozzarella (made the soy milk but did not grow it...)

Right: Pizza half gone before I could grab my camera.

Notes: The mozz came out much more solid. Last time was almond milk; tasted great but too sticky to grate. Soy milk curdles a bit in contact with acid, which made the resulting cheese much more firm. Cheese recipe from "Non Dairy Evolution Cookbook".

While typing this in, I appear to still have a tiny bit of muscle memory for typing Basic in QWERTY. Even after some 25 years.

P100 Magazine also experimented in printing program listings in barcode format, as both the 100 and 102 have barcode reader ports. There aren't many of these, and they're gone by the 1992 issues, so I don't think many people bothered buying one.

Here's what it looked like, from July 1986. You had to type a Basic program to read these, though...

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Found it! A copy of Portable 100 Magazine from May 1992, on, contains a Basic program that creates a ML program that changes the keyboard layout from QWERTY to DVORAK!

Time to type in a Basic program from a magazine, just like I used to do on the Apple IIe back in elementary school...

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I put batteries in and fired it up. Seems to work fine. Still has the original 24k RAM, which I gather can be expanded (officially another 8k, or unofficially via some mods to bring it up to >1M).

Basic interpreter works, too. The address book and scheduler are missing files, maybe I'm missing an init step?

I haven't tried the cassette, but Telecom reveals there's a built-in modem which makes pulse dialing noises. Telecom via null modem -> usb -> SoC might be one way to get online.

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Turns out I have a very dusty Tandy 102. I'm pretty sure the cassette port in the back is the same as the TRS-80 CoCo, so I might be able to use that cassette deck to save things. I'll have to read up more on it, but I suspect it could be made to talk to WiFi over the RS-232 port, via an ESP8266 board, perhaps.

It's not much different than the 100, except being thinner and lighter and coming with 24k of RAM. Oh, and SMD-mount chips, which might make hacking it a bit harder.

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Indoor herb project. Basil and parsley are in pots made from large cans (malt extract cans) and a 3d-printed insert that leaves room at the bottom for a water reservoir. Soon the cilantro will be transplanted into a bigger container, too.

My neighbors probably think I'm growing weed. (It'd be legal, but still...)

TWF a advocate publishes an article about the perils of on a mainstream website with tons of tracking.

In this case, not even a mainstream journalism website; Cory Doctorow's opening paragraphs here:

That's four different third-party companies that can track my reading of the article: Facebook, Google (thrice), Pinterest, and Wordpress (twice). And this is really tame compared to a newpaper...

linux_networking dot jay pee gee

Seriously, wtf does "tc mirred to Houston" mean? A search for it yields only source code from the linux kernel. Would it have killed them to write something in English?

re-set this flag automatically during the last update. If you don't want it scanning your computer and uploading that info to their servers, check your privacy settings.

This is awful.

By default, the desktop app scans your running processes, uploads that info to their servers, and often shares that info with your friends.

Much like , they need a giant killswitch for all privacy options - "No, don't do anything but be an IRC clone."

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A Fediverse instance for people interested in cooperative and collective projects.