Virgin Vices: e-Cigarettes

This is part two of my virgin vices series. For part one, take a look at virgin cocktails. I am not a smoker — which is not to say I don’t know how to smoke. I just never got fully hooked. I’m one of the “social smokers” that the hardcore smokers have grown to hate. … Continue reading Virgin Vices: e-Cigarettes

Designing the Chubby Tricorder

Part 2 in a series. The story so far: a secret surprise puzzle game, a gadget that had to “contain” a piece of paper upon opening, the decision to make that gadget electronic with screen and keypad and to make that paper printed on demand by a thermal printer. Would it work???

The Chubby Tricorder Project: designing a digital puzzle box

Recently, I had the pleasure of building a puzzle-hunt gadget. The circumstances surrounding this particular device and hunt were extremely unique. The puzzle hunt was for an audience of one — a surprise birthday party for my friend Curtis.

My old AirPort Expresses might as well be bricks [Update: Windows saves the day]

So I have a few of those little power-brick sized AirPort Express WiFi units: In the past, I have found them incredibly useful.  They pack away easily and can turn any wired connection into a wireless one or can act as a self-contained basestation for multiple WiFi devices. Since I have one or two spares … Continue reading My old AirPort Expresses might as well be bricks [Update: Windows saves the day]

Nest post-unboxing (i.e. installation)

A few months ago, I signed up for the Nest Thermostat waiting list.  I received it recently.  The Nest is the current darling of the tech blogs.  It was invented when the guy who created the first few generations of iPod and iPhone was looking for a thermostat.  After spending a lot of money on … Continue reading Nest post-unboxing (i.e. installation)

Introducing InfoNinja

Say hello to InfoNinja. InfoNinja is an Open Source Ethernet-connected desktop heads-up display. It works in tandem with a desktop computer to give you an at-a-glance secondary display of both text and ambient (color/blink/fade) information. It is also a tea timer.  You can learn more at the project pages: Project Overview Hardware/Firmware Software The source … Continue reading Introducing InfoNinja

The price-density of gadgets

Wolfram defines density as “the ratio of the amount of matter (mass) to volume.”  If you ask me, that’s straight to the point — but perhaps a little boring. You may have heard of this Archimedes fellow.  That’s him to the right (that’s not Santa Claus). He drew a bath, got in the water, and … Continue reading The price-density of gadgets

MakerBot is thirsty

I have now had my MakerBot since about the beginning of the year. I have blogged a bit about the theory and assembly and had reached a fairly steady-state in its functionality and behavior, which improved greatly in the past week. You see, I have always had a bit of a problem with print-head jams. … Continue reading MakerBot is thirsty

AppleTV and HDCP (Copy Protection)

For a few weeks, my AppleTV complained about HDCP copy protection whenever I tried to play something from Netflix: I assumed it was either a firmware update I had recently installed on the device or a policy update on Netflix’s end. Either way, it did not bother me too much. I have both the AppleTV … Continue reading AppleTV and HDCP (Copy Protection)