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MintyBoost Progress

·232 words·2 mins

So, this past weekend I put together the MintyBoost that I got in the mail last week.

It was pretty fun! It’s only the second time I’ve ever soldered something together, but I think it went pretty well. At least, it went better than the last time I soldered something together – I tried to make a little 555 blinky LED circuit, and I blew up the chip.

This seemed to go pretty well though. Take a look!

{% image mintyboost-1.jpg %}

Disassembling Things For Fun ( No Profit )

·969 words·5 mins

When I got my Arduino Uno, it made me realize that I’ve got a ton of stuff laying around that could supply me with parts. For the longest time I’ve had a bin of old cell phones, mp3 players, and some other random things that I was thinking of just tossing or taking to a pawn shop. When I got the Arduino though, I realized that it’s a great source for quite a few things:

  • surface mount components ( mostly resistors )
  • LEDs
  • LCD screens ( of varying sizes )
  • SIM card holders
  • audio jacks
  • buttons of all shapes and sizes and functionality
  • motors! ( especially important if I want to build a 3d printer! )
  • and a few other bits

Some of the things I’ve taken apart: a few old cell phones, an old mp3 player that apparently never worked, a DVD drive, a printer ( rescued that one from the electronics bin at work ), and two old video cameras. The last four are what I’m most excited about right now. Sure, the cell phones have some cool parts in them, but the project at the top of my list right now is a 3d printer, so the printer and the cameras seemed to have quite a few awesome parts.

I got lucky with the printer too – it was a combination printer/scanner that apparently didn’t work. I’ve got at least one awesome motor + gear belt out of it, so it’s a win for me!

Let’s take a look at some of the awesome stuff I found.

Stupid Article Is Stupid

·679 words·4 mins

If you want to experience the odd emotion of “laughing at something while being angry at it”, go check out this article. Titled “12 Reasons to Join Vancouver’s Tech Revolution in 2014”, it’s pretty much just a poorly written ad for, an “intensive 8-week course” that teaches you how to be a developer. Kimli has some great things to say about this article, and I wanted to dive into a few points, and make a few more. I’m not going the list route though, because I think getting that to work in Octopress would be a pain-in-the-ass.


Another Year of Emacs

·1522 words·8 mins

So, the year is almost over.

For the past year, I’ve been using Emacs as my only editor. Not just for code, but for other things as well – including the post you’re writing right now. Last year at Christmas, I started from scratch with my Emacs configuration. I wanted to start over, re-writing it to use some of the stuff I had learned the year before that, and to try out a few new things.

Learning Erlang

·537 words·3 mins

For a little while now, I’ve been thinking about learning a new programming language. So far, I’ve got a few languages under my belt. I work regularly with PHP and JavaScript nowadays, and I’m pretty big fan of Ruby. I started with Perl – although I don’t think I could program in it right now if my life depended on it. I learned Java in the past when I was going to college, but I haven’t had much reason to pick it up over the last few years. I taught myself C++ a few years ago because I wanted to try and make a game, and at the time C++ was the natural language for that.

CascadiaJS Day Two

·1765 words·9 mins

Last day of the conference! I’m a little beat from yesterday. We had the Hacking Olympics, and while my team didn’t place it was still a ton of fun. Time to start this thing!

CascadiaJS Workshop: JavaScript Best Practices

·1552 words·8 mins

So, this is going to be a bit of a stream-of-consciousness. I’m going to be taking notes on the interesting stuff from this talk, because I’m sure there are going to be things that I don’t already know about that I’ll want to refer to later.