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:
   like interacting with a freshly-started Commodore 64
Sunday, October 20 2019
Despite occasional rains, and initially chilly conditions, I made multiple forays out to the stone wall in the forest to make further improvements. Most of these took the form of additional buttresses coming from the north to various weak spots in the wall's middle. I also replaced some assemblages of small rocks along the wall's top with heavier pieces. Walls that last tend to be capped with large stones (though I don't expect this wall to fair all that well over even a single winter given its generally sloppy construction and narrow base).
We had a large carton of mushrooms going slimy in the refrigerator, so this evening before Gretchen got back from the bookstore, I fried up a big pan of mushrooms and onions and started a pot of water boiling. I didn't want to overcommit to any particular pasta, since I knew Gretchen would care more about what it would be than I would. When Gretchen came home, she decided we should use up some of the tortellini in the refrigerator, as it was nearing its expiration date. She also had an opinion about my pan of mushrooms and onions, which she felt weren't cooked enough. So she cooked them a good fifteen more minutes, driving off much of the water. She also boiled fresh broccoli with the tortellini and added chunks of vegan "fresh mozzarella," capers (which she referred to "favor bombs") and red sauce to the mix. And I added freshly-chopped poblano peppers to mine. It made for a delicious meal.
After taking my Sunday night bath, I experimented with a small microcontroller with LoRa technology called a Pycom LoPy I'd recently bought from AdaFruit. At $50, it's a rather expensive board, but boards that can do LoRa are always expensive. I couldn't quite figure out what to do with it at first. It doesn't have a USB port, so if you want to work with it, you have to wire things up. I didn't want to bother with all that, so I just hooked up power and tried to connect to it through its default WiFi setup (I starts up acting like an access point). Normally when a device impersonates an access point, it serves a web page, but not the LoPy. The documentation, though it looked good, was hard to navigate, and it took some time to figure out that a LoPy connected via WiFi can only be accessed via Telnet (not SSH!) and FTP. The LoPy doesn't actually run an operating system. Instead, it provides shell access to a Python interpreter through something called REPL. Interacting with REPL is a lot like interacting with a freshly-started Commodore 64. None of the usual Linux tools are available, so it's not obvious how to edit files and such. But there's something kind of comforting about such a familiar UI.

Neville didn't go to work today at the bookstore. Here he is returning home from the forest on the Stick Trail with the Chamomile gorge just behind him (to his south). In the Facebook post of a similar picture, I said that, because he wasn't at the bookstore, people might as well buy their books on Amazon.

Looking at the wall today from the south past a massive white pine. Click to enlarge.

Looking at the wall today past its east end. Click to enlarge.

Looking at the wall today from the south. I measured it with a tape measure and it comes to about 84 feet now (though its curvature makes it somewhat longer). Click to enlarge.

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