For inexpensive whole house wireless try a WiFi Range Extender

| February 24, 2017

Previous efforts at using older wireless access points and routers have all been a disappointment when extending WiFi out to our detached garage/poolhouse/workshop, so when Amazon had an AC750 Netgear WiFi Range Extender (Model EX3700) on a "Prime Daily Deals" sale, I was skeptical. Still frustrated with the lack of a good Internet connection further […]

Tech Friday – Ordered an IOT connected Particle Photon device

| February 17, 2017

While talking with my IT friend Jeff about controlling relays with my Pine64 and Raspberry Pi computers, he thought developing with the Arduino or Particle Photon might be a better idea. I did a little bit more reading as to what an Internet Of Things device might be good for, and decided my relay switching […]

Tech gadgets add a new wrinkle to Cat’s in the Cradle message

| February 13, 2017

A lousy, but socially needed, "Music Monday" message: While eating lunch at Wendy’s over the weekend, I notice a father and his young son spending time together for lunch as well. "Nice," I thought … until the all to often happened. The dad’s attention was drawn to his cellphone … to the point he gave […]

TechFriday or maybe Tesla Friday as production shuts down

| February 10, 2017

This was going to be a normal Tech Friday post, but instead it will marry the automotive technology leader Tesla with a bit of news on their higher-volume / lower priced Model 3 sedan due out this summer. The company stated that all was on schedule for meeting their targeted July production date and they […]

Apple is sitting pretty again after reporting earnings

| February 1, 2017

After the stock market closed yesterday, Apple $AAPL reported their fiscal first quarter earning and shocked even the most bullish in the crowd. Their iPhone 7 sales help them deliver record earning, no doubt due to Samsung’s battery issues (Android users switching to Apple iOS). Considering Apple make a lot more than phones, it is […]

TechFriday: Still experimenting with computers and relays

| January 27, 2017

After a previous simple $20 relay component test, my friend Jeff and I realized that there were a few shortcomings in using it for a future project — enter the cheaper eBay $3.99 higher powered solid state relay module.  This smallish sized relay component can be wired into a 40 amp circuit and switched with […]

Demographics and Interests of those visiting MyDesultoryBlog

| January 21, 2017

Those who have been blogging for a while learn to monitor their viewership. We’d like to  know what kind of traffic is hitting the servers and often looking at the breakdown as to what generates interest and ad clicks. In the early days, a "hit counter" was sufficient, but as country music artist Loretta Lynn […]

TechFriday: New to me IoT High-Power 110 volt AC Relay

| January 20, 2017

A friend of mine has been brainstorming the components and options for a project that I’m tinkering on for both the sailboat and improving my back up power at the house. Basically the idea is to use a minimalist single board computer like the Arduino, Raspberry Pi, Pine64 or maybe just the new IoT Photon. […]

Thumbprint Radio, Pandora and a friendly, but snidely jab

| January 8, 2017

This WAS going to be a positive and upbeat post about enjoying Pandora’s Thumbprint Radio feature … UNTIL a "friendly" text message came in from my Florida (soon to be Savannah, Georgia)  sailing friend Mark telling me he had a cold beer in the fridge waiting for me. How nice to have friends anxious for […]

Tech – Jobs Friday: Wages up, but a tepid 156K nonfarm job rise

| January 6, 2017

U.S. employment increased less than expected in December, but wages are rising, ever so slightly after a long stagnancy. Most economists are positive since they say we only need to create 56,000 jobs per month to keep up with current levels of new entrants in the job market. Others will point out that our job […]

Learning more about my new Panasonic Lumix GX8

| January 4, 2017

A little testing of the somewhat faster Lumix 4/5s 25mm f 1.8 Prime lens vs the Lumix 14 – 140 slower f 3.5 zoom gave me surprising results on closer distances, at least different than I expected. First off, neither lens impressed me when it came to edge to edge sharpness. The Prime lens "may" […]

The snow is starting … says the Raspberry Pi GarageCam

| December 13, 2016

Afternoon …

TechFriday 2: Just a couple camera and lens images

| December 9, 2016

The top image is a daylight test image while trying a new camera and lens combination (Panasonic Lumix GX8 and 14-140mm lens) and is a very large original image … so if you click it, it will prove to be a larger image download (be warned).

TechFriday: Kickstarter Raspberry Shake and other item arrived

| December 9, 2016

I helped fund the Raspberry Pi based computer Kickstarter project known as the RaspberryShake  networkingworking a large number of inexpensive earthquake monitoring station around the world (www.raspberryshake.org/quick-start-guide). The idea of connecting hundreds if not thousands of independent volunteer monitoring stations isn’t new, but it is a growing force in data collection. Hopefully I’ll be able […]

Black Friday and Cyber Monday thoughts of shopping – eww!

| November 26, 2016

No visits to the mall, stores or even online shopping for me on Black Friday, but I have started the process of looking for a new camera "system" to replace my aging DSLR. With my first granddaughter on the way, it might be time to get back to my roots and revisit my old hobby […]

TechFriday: Spending a few hours installing old software

| November 25, 2016

It is easy to forget just how much software one ends up with after 9 years using a computer. There was everything from odd ball utilities to a variety of outdated Adobe Creative Suite design software that I occasionally need. These were all versions installed from CD and are not openly supported anymore. Unlike my […]

Remapping a couple keys on the new Lenovo Yoga 710

| November 20, 2016

I couldn’t take the continued typos anymore and had to map the "right-shift" key on my new Lenovo Yoga 710 to the "arrow-up" key. So as not to lose my "arrow-up" key, I mapped that to the rarely used "right-ctrl" key. Now all is well with the world.  

Amazon storage server options can be surprisingly costly

| November 13, 2016

Surprise! At least that’s what I found out when I opened a couple virtual invoices from Amazon for my two AWS accounts (personal and business). After moving files for online web content to Amazon’s fast and reliable S3 cloud-based servers a couple years ago, I’ve been happily adding content regularly since then as the cost […]

New Ukrainian Rocket Launcher Appears to Use Raspberry Pi

| November 10, 2016

A mockup weapon seen at a Ukrainian trade show appears to use a Raspberry Pi micro PC as the basis of a guidance system—probably not at all what the inventors of the hobby computer had in mind when they introduced their affordable wonder to the world. The weapon was reportedly sighted at last month’s Bezpeka […]

Under pressure, Apple has cut prices on USB-C adapters

| November 5, 2016

While I continue to struggle with the "do I need a new notebook computer" question, I continue to frustrate myself with the old 2007 Gateway, iMac desktop and iPad? It would really be nice to have a fast, lightweight traveling notebook computer (with more than 30 minutes of battery life!), but have found that a […]

TechFriday: Some cheap components have arrived from China

| November 4, 2016

The pile of new electrical parts in my photo likely doesn’t mean much to those who don’t enjoy tinkering with computer and robotic projects, but for me a novice in programming computers gadgets, it is an chance to learn on the cheap. With the budget Raspberry Pi and Pine64 computers, beginners of “all ages” have […]

TechFriday: The new Apple MacBook Pro has been announced

| October 28, 2016

As Fernando Lamas would say (or Mark Howard – it’s on the back of my late brother-in-law grave marker) …  "it looks mahvelous!" (paraphrased). Unfortunately the Apple’s newest MacBook Pro has a price to match it’s looks and expected performance with the 13" model WITH the new TouchBar starting at $1799 and the big boy […]

Denial of Services impacting Internet access for much of the U.S.

| October 21, 2016

Twitter status above illustrating second attack shutting down services. The cyber threat continues … as  a second wave cripples some of the biggest domain names through Dyn (Manchester, NH), a company that provide DNS services for connecting domain names to IP addresses. Dyn said it had resolved one attack, which disrupted operations for about two […]

TechFriday: Tim Berners Lee — The Double Slash

| October 21, 2016

Given what Sir Tim did for all of us when he developed HTML and created the World Wide Web, he’s got a fair amount of credit in the bank. If he did have any major regrets about the web, we wouldn’t find it too difficult to forgive him, but his mea culpa relates to only […]

Phone scams, Do-not-call lists and IRS fraud

| October 4, 2016

Mail fraud and phone scams are ongoing problems if you live in the U.S. unless you are lucky enough to exist under a rock. Throughout the years I’ve been targeted by shady hoodlums looking to make a quick buck using fraud and deceit as a way to access money or more information. Likely these criminals […]

TechFriday: The New Raspberry Pi OS Is Here and it looks great

| September 30, 2016

The Raspberry Pi’s main operating system, Raspbian, just got a brand new look from the Raspberry Pi Foundation. Dubbed PIXEL, it’s a skin for Raspbian that modernises the interface, adds some new programs and makes it much more pleasant to use. Click for a full review from Lifehacker Australia: The New Raspberry Pi OS Is […]

Salesforce.com rumored to be expressing interest in Twitter

| September 23, 2016

While Twitter shareholders seemed to like the rumor of Salesforce.com showing interest in $TWTR, those holding shares of $CRM are not quite as enthused. This has happened before so we’ll see if there is any real substance … OR if others might be interested? Google??? Salesforce.com Inc. is considering a takeover of Twitter Inc., according […]

Eventually I will want one … the Apple iPhone7 plus

| September 8, 2016

Why you ask? The Camera. Apple has again updated their excellent smartphone and this time, from the sounds of it, have really improved the picture taking ability of the iPhone. Both versions have an upgraded lens, software, processor and larger sensor (12 megapixels). There are a lot of smart tweaks that help with point and […]

A beautiful quadrotor aerial video from Lake Michigan

| September 1, 2016

My son-in-law Drew shared a really impressive Phatom3 movie clip on YouTube after his July 2016 vacation in Michigan. There were some incredibly beautiful views, sunsets and shoreline video … of course it didn’t hurt that the weather was perfect for Katelyn and Drew’s vacation at his parent’s “cabin” (as they call it). Although I’ve […]

Intel is banking on fast storage for growth

| August 25, 2016

The latest Intel Optane data storage may be the next big advance for servers and PCs if this is the next chip technology. I’m not sure about power requirements, but perhaps it will make its way in to mobile devices?

Twitter investors and stock traders see different things $TWTR

| August 11, 2016

Get hammered, bounce back. After promising news of more live event streaming, and peppering in a few buyout rumors, $TWTR could really be off to the races (again). It’s a chart only a "trader" can love … since investors question Twitter’s business model and management. A chart for the summer of 2016 tells the tale. […]

Quickly spun up a new server and volume with Digital Ocean

| August 10, 2016

One of the great things about working with Digital Ocean is the ability to spin up a new droplet server based on a previously saved image/backups within a few minutes. Due to recent improvement of adding volumes in order to expand storage, currently only a couple of their data centers, I opted to image an […]

The Raspberry Pi 3 is running a little hot again

| August 7, 2016

Once again, the little Raspberry Pi 3 is running hotter than optimal for long life and performance. I’m adding the small heatsinks as with the first Pi3 which eventually failed to boot — exchanged under warranty BUT it was running consistently hot. I have purposely monitored and kept the case open (saves a few degrees) […]

How does your monthly smartphone bill compare to Ting?

| August 6, 2016

After years (30 years to be closer to the truth!!!) of comparing the best cellphones and carriers when it comes to device and service, I can finally say that I’m satisfied. Back in 2014, as our kids (and parents) moved on to their own plans, I switched our two iPhone5s to Ting. From day one […]

The Acoustic Function that lead to the VW emissions scandal

| July 23, 2016

The development of Volkswagen’s emission defeating device may have initially had the best of intentions, according to Road and Track. It started with engineers in 1999 who were working to quiet the diesel clatter on an Audi V-6 engine. They were  using "Pilot Injection" to inject an additional amount of fuel to a cylinder when […]

TechFriday: What could a flexible screen do for the iPhone?

| July 22, 2016

With a renewed interest in the upcoming iPhone7 after Apple released the new iOS10 public beta, I’m wondering what’s really the next “big” (pun intended) thing for pocketable smart devices. If it were durable and possible, I’d love having an expanding screen on my iPhone that could do double-duty as an iPad!

Apple releases iOS 10 public beta 2 for iPhone, iPad & iPod touch

| July 20, 2016

Now that Apple’s third iOS 10 developer beta has had some time to settle, Apple has released the second iOS 10 public beta for non-developers testing the pre-release software. The latest buil… Source: Apple releases iOS 10 public beta 2 for iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch

My Kickstarter Pine64 single board computer finally arrived

| July 15, 2016

It has been a long time in coming, but the PineA64 Kickstarter project that I backed in January finally arrived. As start-ups, this one was not as smooth as it could have been. The team promised deliveries in March, then April and finally no later than May. Eventually June and finally July for the last […]

Safeguarding Chrome from quantum computers

| July 8, 2016

Will Internet transactions be secure when relatively affordable quantum computers show up? Google is not taking chances and is working on their Chrome browser now (according to The Verge). Google is working on safeguarding Chrome against the potential threat of quantum computers, the company announced today. It’s doing so by implementing post-quantum cryptography in an […]

A short post to set up OLW on a new ASUS notebook

| July 1, 2016

This is a quick test for a new computer running Open Live Writer. I’m retiring my 9 year old Gateway notebook computer and forging ahead with a low powered and low cost Microsoft Window 10 notebook. More to come on my recent addition in a future post, but after the Gateway overheated and cooked itself […]

Desultory - des-uhl-tawr-ee, -tohr-ee

  1. lacking in consistency, constancy, or visible order, disconnected; fitful: desultory conversation.
  2. digressing from or unconnected with the main subject; random: a desultory remark.