Blast from the Past: Tandy 1000TL/2

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A little over two years ago I was finishing building the XTIDE Adapter with the Dangerous Prototypes free PCB. Using their Bus Pirate I was able to flash the CPULD, but you need a computer to flash the BIOS. Upon pulling my Tandy 1000TL/2 (my first computer were I learned the basis of everything I do today) out of the closet, I realized after trying a standard keyboard that it requires an XT keyboard. Drat! When my wife and I moved first moved to Monterey, I had gotten rid of a bunch of stuff. I couldn’t remember if the Tandy keyboard was one of them. I know I got rid of the monitor(s) and dot matrix printer. Either way, I still …


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Over the last few weekends and then some, I have been playing with the Colorific RGB Bulb from Amazon. Inspired by this learn guide I decided to make it reactive to audio. Finally! An excuse to buy the Teensy Audio shield! Here are a few pictures and a short demo of it in action. You can find the code and my notes on the issues with it and where the project is at currently on: Teensy 3.1 with Audio Shield, TFT connect to RPi Raspberry Pi 2 with BT 4.0 and UART connected to Teensy 3.1. Colorific Bulb in action


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Last year I decided to give freeNAS another try despite the warnings of not having ECC memory and running in a VM. Long story short, it ran great for awhile. I had freeBSD jails setup for CrashPlan and Owncloud – it was heaven! It was all running smoothly until not having ECC memory caught up to me. I began to have checksum errors, so I had to dump the data. Much faster than restoring from backup. I then decided to just fall back to my comfort zone and run Windows Server 2012 as a file server. It would give me a good opportunity to become more intimate with 2012. We just have a few servers at work with 2012, so …

Adventure in Bitcoin: GridSeeds

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Part  1 Potato chips. You can’t just eat one, am I right? That’s how mining has become for me. It’s always just a little more mining power. Like reaching in and grabbing a couple of extra chips and before you know it, the entire bag is empty. But in the case of mining, there will always be something left in the bag. You can trade various coins, set up more rigs or upgrade your current hardware. Up until now, GPUs where the only way to mine Altcoins. ASIC’s are what took over Bitcoin mining and now they’re finally just starting to become available for Scrypt mining. One of the first that are somewhat affordable are the GridSeeds. I have been …

Adventures in Bitcoin

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Part 2 Over the last few months, I decided to try my hand at mining BitcoinsCryptocurrency. Recently, I found the best way to get started is to mine what are called Altcoins. Bitcoins and a few others are based on SHA256 hashes which are easier to verify transactions and therefore there are ASIC or Application Specific Integrated Circuits that can mine very fast. Because of this, the network difficulty becomes very high and therefore takes more power for the same reward. Basically you get a reward for mining which is providing processing power to verify transactions. Once the network agrees that a transaction is valid, it then confirms the transaction. Altcoins are based on Scrypt mining which is more memory …

Weekend Harmony 720 Repair

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A few days, weeks ago our Logitech Harmony 720 remote had some issues. It seems that the interface and buttons were working but not transmitting to any device. Over Thanksgiving weekend I got a chance to take it apart to see what was going on. During the IR Camera, test I was able to confirm the IR LEDs where not emitting at all. After a quick Google search, it looks like this is a common issue. It could be from the heat generated while charging. To me, it sounds like an engineering flaw. But I have to admit this remote lasted a long time and it was purchased from eBay. It’s probably been at least 3+ years. Harmony 720 Parts …

Science: Water temp over time

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Every few weeks or so we make a trip to the water store to fill up our 3 gallon water container all while trying to avoid their delicious Santa Cruz ice cream. Upon arriving home, the container gets put into the refrigerator. At which point I started to wonder about the effect of the ambient temperature and how long it takes the water to reach equilibrium. My first attempt went pretty well. Here is the hardware I used, most of what I had available except for the waterproof temp sensor and the food grade heat shrink. DS18B20 – Waterproof temp sensor – AdafruitFood-grade heat shrink tubing – AdafruitArduino LeonardoArduino Ethernet Shield (for SD Card)Cardboard boxSHT1x TempHumidity SensorTenergy 7.4v 5200mAh LiPo Battery – …

Labor Day Weekend: LED Audio Meter

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Two weeks ago I received some MAX7219 samples from Maxim. So this past labor day weekend was the perfect opportunity to try one out. I started out by assembling another Atmega Lite from Gizmoz USA. I have three of them, of which this is the second to use. My friend bought me two and I bought another one while I was visiting Portland, OR last year. These are great, cheap and breadboard usable, or good to embed in a project like I have done with my Smart Outlet. Plus you can use the Arduino bootloader. So the first thing was to get one LED to light up, which I thought would be easy. Ha! I started on Saturday afternoon by gathering my components and my large breadboard setup. Originally, it didn’t occur to me that …

IIS Logs Cleanup in Powershell

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Back in June I was working on cleaning up the IIS log files at work but I wanted to archive them instead of deleting them, just in case. I came across this script in Powershell. It works well but it needed the ability to archive a folder of folders instead of having to list each folder and the ability to backup previous months. So I updated it and I decided I would post it here in case it can help someone else. #Windows PowerShell Code################################################### # # NAME: compress-remove-logs.ps1 # VERSION: 1.4.2 # DATE: 20120309 # # AUTHOR: Bernie Salvaggio # EMAIL: BernieSalvaggio(at)gmail(dot)com # TWITTER: @BernieSalvaggio # WEBSITE: # # COMMENT: Given one or more website directories, parse through the …