Posts from my general blog

Tinkering

I'm once again tinkering with the way fuzzyslogic.com works. My latest grand idea is centered around two wonderful python projects; a static site generator called Nikola and an excellent replacement for my beloved Yahoo Pipes! called Riko.

This post is just a test to see if my new system can ingest content from blogger. More updates once I have edged closer to something worthy of showing the world.

Bye Bye 2015

2015 was a pretty big year for myself and my little tribe. We moved back to Australia after living in the US for 3 years, this time settling in Hobart, Tasmania. Another new city (and state) for all of us, but it quickly felt like home. As much as I'll miss being an hours drive from one of the world's best skydiving dropzones, I'm very happy to be back in my home country.

Looking back on 2015 it all seems like a bit of a blur. Beyond the obvious craziness of packing up our lives and moving across the planet, having our little baby grow into a toddler was pretty epic.

Looking forward to 2016 and things are sure to get even more crazy.

Hopefully in the next few hours we'll get confirmation that the final hoops have been cleared in buying a house. We'll be packing everything up again for another move in February, the upside is that should be the last time we'll need to do that any time soon.

Once we're in the new house we'll be making it feel like home and preparing it to handle a family of 4; our second child is due in May. I'm sure the place will feel like a mad house with an infant and a 2.5 year old in it, but I've got the feeling that it'll be wonderful.

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Hello Old Friend

I've kicked fuzzyslogic.com back into some kind of life; essentially hacking together a very simple replacement for the fairly complex system I had in place previously. I actually feel pretty proud of what I've got running as a replacement for the old Yahoo Pipes! version of the backend for the site. At some stage in the near future I'll post a more detailed explanation of it over on my Fuzzy's Projects Blog.

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Time to Rethink fuzzyslogic.com

I built the current version of fuzzyslogic.com with the idea that it had to be able to handle the fact that internet services come and go. I made it simple for me to switch from one hosting provider to another and be able to add and remove the collection of content from sites and services as they came and went. These features have worked wonderfully; when I moved to the US I switched from an Australian host to an American one, I've switched from using wordpress to blogger for my blogging service, I've switched from spurl to diigo for online bookmarking.... etc.

However, there was one single point of failure in all this; Yahoo Pipes. It is an amazing system that not many people have heard about, basically it allowed me to feed in a stack of rss feeds, munge them all together and spit out data in a format of my choice.

Now Pipes being shut down.

At the end of August 2015 the back end system for fuzzyslogic.com will stop pulling in new content because Pipes won't be there to do it.

I'm forced to consider what to do. Since I built all of this around Pipes I've learned to love a python library called Beautiful Soup, which I could use to build a custom system to replace what I was using Pipes for.

However, I have to stop and consider the fact that I haven't really been making much use of fuzzyslogic.com anyway. Combine that with the fact that no one else actually visits the site anyway..... then maybe I don't really need to invest any effort in keeping it running.

I could kill off the host all together and shift the domain name over be hosted by my registra or simply point it directly at the fuzzy's logic blogger site. This would be saving me US$5 a month and never having to worry about updating a web server or even monitoring one.

The only other things I've been using the web server host for is running my RSS aggregator which I can replace with another service such as inoreader.com, running an IRC bot in a channel which has recently been replaced by our group using Slack and storing random files (which I can use any number of cloud storage places for).

I've got a little over a month to think about it.... but at this stage I'm leaning towards shutting down the web server.

2014

Already a month into 2015 and I haven't really found the time or inclination to do any kind of 2014 wrap up post. I think mostly this is because last year was epic for a whole bunch of reasons which are completely unlike any I've included in a previous year wrap post. Normally I talk about games, movies and tv shows. I sprinkle in some stuff about technology and news.

Last year I became a Dad.

Games, movies, tv shows and technology all seem a little less important now.

I don't really want to post about all the amazing things, lessons and hurdles we faced as new parents; as proven by the fact that I set up daddyslogic.com and posted to it a total of about thrice before realizing that I was better off spending the energy being a Dad than posting about being a Dad.

The people who care about my trials and tribulations as a new Dad are on Facebook, where I've spammed a near continuous stream of photos and quips about the whole ordeal.

The one thing I will say is that I have found time to get deeply addicted to online sim racing, specifically iRacing. I started a blog for that too; fuzzysracing.blogspot.com. My interest in sharing thoughts and information about that topic hasn't waned yet.

Google Thinks I'm Interested In

You can find out what topics Google thinks you're interested in via this link.

Here's mine:

  • Action & Adventure Films
  • Android Apps
  • Android OS
  • Antivirus & Malware
  • Arts & Entertainment
  • Audio Equipment
  • Banking
  • Blu-Ray Players & Recorders
  • Bollywood & South Asian Film
  • Business & Industrial
  • Business & Productivity Software
  • Cable & Satellite Providers
  • Camcorders
  • Camera & Photo Equipment
  • Cameras
  • Cameras & Camcorders
  • Chips & Processors
  • Computer & Video Games
  • Computer Components
  • Computer Drives & Storage
  • Computer Hardware
  • Computer Memory
  • Computer Monitors & Displays
  • Computer Security
  • Computers & Electronics
  • Consumer Electronics
  • Dance & Electronic Music
  • Data Backup & Recovery
  • Desktop Computers
  • Electronic Accessories
  • Email & Messaging
  • Flash Drives & Memory Cards
  • Game Systems & Consoles
  • Games
  • Hard Drives
  • Headphones
  • Home & Garden
  • Home Theater Systems
  • ISPs
  • Ink & Toner
  • Input Devices
  • Internet & Telecom
  • Internet Clients & Browsers
  • Jazz
  • LCD TVs
  • Laptops & Notebooks
  • Mac OS
  • Memory Card Readers
  • Mobile & Wireless
  • Mobile & Wireless Accessories
  • Mobile Apps & Add-Ons
  • Mobile OS
  • Mobile Phones
  • Movies
  • Music & Audio
  • Music Recording Technology
  • Network Storage
  • Networking
  • Networking Equipment
  • News
  • Online Video
  • Operating Systems
  • Photo & Video Software
  • Power Supplies
  • Product Reviews & Price Comparisons
  • Recording Industry
  • Security Products & Services
  • Shooter Games
  • Smart Phones
  • Software
  • Software Utilities
  • Sony PlayStation
  • Sound & Video Cards
  • South Asian Music
  • Speakers
  • Stereo Systems & Components
  • TV & Video
  • TV & Video Equipment
  • Tablet PCs
  • Televisions
  • Travel
  • Voice & Video Chat
  • Web Services
  • Webcams & Virtual Tours
  • Windows Mobile OS
  • Windows OS
  • Xbox

Not bad.

Podcast Sync

I listen to audio books and podcasts using a SanDisk Sansa, I prefer this over using my mobile phone for a few reasons. The main ones are:

  • battery life; the sansa lasts weeks with out a recharge

  • it clips onto my collar and I use a very short set of headphones

I use the Juice podcast receiver application to download and manage my podcast subscriptions. I have it rigged up to download new podcasts every day and delete any file over 14 days old (for some podcasts I set up a longer purge time).

I then have a batch file which calls xxcopy to sync the mp3 files from the podcast download folder on my laptop onto the sansa. Here is the batch file:

[code]@echo off
set SN=19088743
set "extDrive="

for /f %%D in ('wmic volume get driveLetter^, serialNumber ^| find "%sn%"') do set extDrive=%%D

if not defined extDrive echo Error finding external drive & pause & exit /b

xxcopy C:\Users\fuzzy\Podcasts "%extDrive%\PODCASTS" /KS/H/E/R/Q/BB/ZE/oD0/ZY/YY/EXC:\Users\fuzzy\Utils\podcast-exclude.txt[/code]

Now there are a couple of things which you'd have to edit if you were going to make use of this:

  • plug in your mp3 player

  • check what drive letter has been assigned to it

  • open a cmd window (start -> run -> cmd)

  • execute the following: wmic volume get driveLetter, serialNumber

  • copy the serial number listed next to the drive letter of your mp3 player

  • edit this number into the line in the batch file to replace my serial number: set SN=19088743

You'll also need to edit the paths to your podcast directory on your PC and the output directory.

The C:\Users\fuzzy\Utils\podcast-exclude.txt part is the location of a text file which contains a list of any folders which I don't want to include in the sync.

Windows 8.1 Upgrade

I had a few issues while attempting to upgrade my laptop from Windows 8 to Windows 8.1.

  1. If your harddrive is encrypted with something like TrueCrypt, you'll have to decode it, apply the upgrade and then re-encode it.
  2. A batch file script I use to sync podcasts between my PC and mp3 player had once gone a little nuts and written some files to my system reserved partition. This meant that there wasn't enough free space in there for the 8.1 upgrade to do its thing. I had to use a GParted Live CD to work out what was wrong and clean up the podcast mess.

Once the install of the 8.1 upgrade was completed the first thing I attempted to do was connect to one of the servers I manage via remote desktop. I usually do this by selecting the appropriate entry from my start -> run history. Imagine my joy to find out that all the entries for all commands had been removed. Thanks MS.