Your leaking thatched hut during the restoration of a pre-Enlightenment state.


Hello, my name is Judas Gutenberg and this is my blaag (pronounced as you would the vomit noise "hyroop-bleuach").


decay & ruin
Biosphere II
dead malls
Irving housing

got that wrong

appropriate tech
Arduino μcontrollers
Backwoods Home
Fractal antenna

fun social media stuff

(nobody does!)

Like my brownhouse:
   1975 calculator
Saturday, April 25 2015
The sun was out for much of the day, and at times the best place to be (according to Ramona and Oscar at least) was stretched out in the driveway.
A big 7.8-magnitude earthquake had happened in Nepal last night, and by today all my trollish Facebook "friends" were checking in to say that they'd survived the disaster (though many of them purport to live in the decidedly non-seismic "tri-county area" of Minnesota).
At some point today, I finished my portrait of a cat-human hybrid. To commemorate the earthquake, I named it "Catman II." See for yourself:

A little after 4:00pm, Eva and Sandor picked me up and we drove to the Woodstock Lodge to meet Gretchen, who had just gotten off work at the bookstore. The sun was bright and warm, allowing us to sit outside. The beer options were terrible, so I ordered a Jack Daniels on the rocks. Gretchen had a present for me from our friend Lee (of Julianna and Lee). It was a Minerva 825 calculator, one of the early models of pocket calculators. Manufactured in 1975 in Franklin, Tennessee, it had a tiny LED display whose digits lit up from left to right (instead of the way all calculators modern do). It lacked memory, square root, or percentage, but had a feature called K that allowed it go into a mode where it was possible to perform a function repeatedly with every press of the equal button. Using a small phillips screwdriver from Gretchen's Prius, I took it apart right there on the table. It contained two integrated circuits: a 16 pin 7105N (manufactured in the 33rd week of 1973) and a 24 pin CZL-550 (manufactured in the 39th week of 1973); read about both chips here. Judging by the imperfect appearance of the solders (which had not been defluxed), everything had been assembled by hand. While Sandor and I nerded out on the calculator, finding very little about it on the web, Eva and Gretchen went to check out the lodge's cabins. When they came back, they reported that they were largely in a bad state of disrepair.
Back at the house, Gretchen made me some sort of faux chicken wrap which was really delicious. After she'd monopolized the television to watch a bunch of shows that had accumulated during her ongoing Justified binge, I got a chance to watch some of my shows. I'd been watching Silicon Valley on my computer, but now I could stretch out on the couch. My Silicon Valley binge continued, though none of it was quite as funny as I'd remembered the pilot being.

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