Building a Custom Kitchen Timer

I have been learning to cook over the past year. Or technically, learning to cook better. I have had a reserve of about 6 recipes I’ve always used — mostly large trays of food like lasagne and casserole, with a week of leftovers. Baking is a different skillset, but one I’ve always been good at. … Continue reading Building a Custom Kitchen Timer

You are Beautiful, Inside and Out

I have perhaps gained a reputation among close personal friends. The phrase “real-life troll” has been kicked around by those that are in the know. I can neither confirm nor deny this allegation, but the following evidence has been entered into the record: Exhibit A: The “voice activated paper towel instruction” stickers. Exhibit B: The … Continue reading You are Beautiful, Inside and Out

Open Architecture Security Cameras

About a month ago, I got a pair of security cameras for the house. It took a bit of research to arrive at the right ones. There are a lot of cameras on the market, and most of them are cheap things locked into a vendor ecosystem. It was a bit more expensive, but I … Continue reading Open Architecture Security Cameras

Experiments in Glass Etching

Every fall I bust out the candlemaking supplies. My skill in that department isn’t going to place my candles in fancy boutiques, but they’re functional enough to provide some warmth and ambience throughout the winter. And every year I hone that skill or broaden the scope to adjacent domains. I’ve mainly stuck to producing container … Continue reading Experiments in Glass Etching

Reduced Drinking with a Victorian Design

In day-to-day life, I drink a lot of water and a lot of tea. If there’s a drink in front of me, I go through it fairly quickly. Unfortunately, this mechanism also applies to alcoholic drinks. At happy hours and out at bars with friends, I can go through quite a number of drinks before … Continue reading Reduced Drinking with a Victorian Design

Video Rekognizer

This year at Amazon’s re:Invent conference, Rekognition premiered as a new service. It is a “deep-learning AI” service that performs image recognition on pictures you show it. It provides labels of objects and concepts it finds in the image. It can also do facial recognition. Hitting the Rekognition API is only a few lines of … Continue reading Video Rekognizer

NES Sprite Display

Let me tell you a little bit about a project I’ve been working on for the past few weeks. The NES Sprite Display is an Arduino-based program to display assorted NES-era game sprites (primarily Super Mario and Zelda) on a large 32×32 LED matrix. It looks a little something like this: The inspiration for this project came … Continue reading NES Sprite Display

Designing Game Show Buzzers

At my workplace, we have all-company Friday lunches. Often we will have a speaker giving a presentation — either someone from within the company or someone from the local community. Once, we had a silly game show. It was successful enough that we brought it back a second time, but this time with a little more … Continue reading Designing Game Show Buzzers

Designing Amazon Web Services Playing Cards

I have used a few of Amazon’s more popular web services, both on the job and on my own. I’ve deployed code to EC2 and Lambda. I’ve synced files and stored backups on S3 and Glacier. I’ve experimented with a few others. But what is WAF? SNS? CloudTrail? I wasn’t even sure I could tell you what those acronyms … Continue reading Designing Amazon Web Services Playing Cards

Building an Unusual Video Game Controller

Every so often I visit OMSI After Dark. These are occasional adults-only evenings that the local science museum puts on. A few months ago the specific After Dark event was about the history of video games. They had (and still do have, for a little while longer) a full exhibit, including some free-play games from Ground … Continue reading Building an Unusual Video Game Controller