Category Archives: Uncategorized

The watch that Bret built…. With the help of Adafruit!

I built a watch yesterday from a kit I ordered from Adafruit.  It is called the TimesSquare watch, and it is really cool the way time crawls across your wrist.  It also shows date, phase of the moon, battery levels, and is a binary watch as well.

Here’s the overview video from the gang at Adafruit.

Another cool thing, is this Arduino compatible, which means that you can modify the code, so that you can change the way the watch works, so that it can either reflect your personality better, or perhaps be easier to read based on how old your eyes are or aren’t.

The instructions on the Adafruit site are perfect for a beginner, and hold your hand through the entire process. Since I am a relatively new solderer, it was helpful to get the very basic steps, as well as photos of each step as well.

I will be showing this bad boy off to the other folks at work tomorrow, and I think there will be a few more built in the next few months for birthday presents for friends and family…. Perhaps another one with different color leds (I got red this time).

Thanks Adafruit for a fun and attractive project! Perhaps someday, I’ll be able to convince one of their engineers to allow me to interview them. We’ll see what I can do.

Darkness has Fallen…

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For my readers and listeners, a sad time has come.  The autonomous robotic boat named Scout has gone dark, and this time, it looks like it is final.  She last transmitted more than 24 hours ago, after some rather interesting couple of days where she tracked against current and wind, and at last looked like she was picking up a route.

Scout — Transatlantic Autonomous Robot - Chromium_001

According to Scout teammate Tom Schindler,  “[The] best case scenario someone picked her up [otherwise] the backup tracker could be waterlogged or otherwise disconnected from the hull, or she sank.”

It looks like at this point, unless she has been picked up, we may never learn of her fate unless she happens to make landfall at some point.

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InterestingCool.com Presents Singer Songwriter Scott Peoples

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InterestingCool.com is proud to present Scott Peoples.  Singer, songwriter, outstanding guitarist, Scott is in the trenches promoting his Kickstarter.com project which is to fund his first full length CD, This Moment.

Scott is from the South Central Pennsylvania area, and you can see him at various venues in the mid-state.  Check out Scott’s Facebook page for more information on where you can see him, play some of his music, and to see what’s new in his world.

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Food making you pass out? It Might be Spoiled… Learn from Adam Dachis’ mistake.

I was listening to the Ask Lifehacker podcast last week, and after I stopped laughing, I said… Hmmm, that’s pretty cool.  Now let me preface that by saying that I do that a lot during that podcast.  These guys are fun, and interesting, and frequently dig up things that I really can use.    The lifehacker site is also awesome… But this article is less about the Ask Lifehacker podcast, and more about the solution for Adam Dachis and his predicament…

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To paraphrase, Dachis was passing out frequently, often incoherent, and probably damaged his permanent memory during the past week.  Sounds serious, doesn’t it?  And yes, in fact it is serious, however, my dark sense of humor erupted when he said why he was not feeling well.

Dachis had been eating expired vegetables because he was too lazy to go to the grocery store, or order a grocery delivery.  The problem was… It was NOT good food.  They had passed from being nutritious into the wonderful world of poisonous…  Hmmm, when I write this it doesn’t sound funny.  I think hearing him talk about it, and Whitson Gordon reminding him several times of his poor choices are what fired my humor.  It was funny… Really!

On a serious note, I tend to be very paranoid about certain foods, and more lax on others.  But as pointed out by Dachis, there is a solution to guessing which foods are ok and which ones aren’t.  http://www.stilltasty.com/ is a site which has a huge database of food safety rules for shelf life of food.  There is also an iPhone app as well, so you can access the data from almost anywhere (Android users, you’ll have to use the web).

StillTasty Your Ultimate Shelf Life Guide

From opened anchovies to  vodka, you can tell when to pitch it, how to store it safely, and other extremely helpful tidbits.  There are also articles which discuss things like expiration dates and best by dates, unexpected things you can freeze, and foods that can be stored and kept viable forever (well, almost).

In Closing, Dachis, if you read this… I hope that you take up composting in the future instead of eating dicey vegetables!

 

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Scout is talking again! And possibly going to visit Titanic!

Scout — Transatlantic Autonomous Robot - Google Chrome_2013-10-02_19-46-26
Her backup satellite communications have kicked in (the pink dots) and while she is farther South than expected, she is on track again to her destination it seems. The Scout team will know more as the days pass as far as whether she is traveling under her own steam or if she is simple drifting and the wind and current are pushing her.

I will be hosting another Google+ Hangout On Air with the Scout team Tuesday night around 8:30pm. Hopefully, we’ll have more information then. If you have questions, we will be taking live questions from the audience.  If you can’t make the Hangout, you can post your questions here, or on the interestingcool.com facebook page