Sunday, November 29, 2015

Operation Shelf Life: Part 3

Prototype #2 is a success!  Mostly.

I made two units.  This picture shows them stacked in "shelf mode" with the lids in between the fucking shelves.

This is a top down view of the units separated and rotated on their backs for trunk mode.  One of them has the lid in place, the other has the lid laying over the opening:

As I expected the fit is extremely tight because the pieces are design to fit perfectly and its a vertical drop.  So for the next version I will probably need to introduce a slope to the piece edges that go inside each other.

As simple as this looks this design is actually incredibly complicated--there are a ton of edges and, as I discovered with my first prototype, a surprising number of them need to be matched perfectly.  Oh, you know what?  According to wikipedia these little ridges are called flanges.  Honestly that might be the first time I heard that word used correctly.

In addition to the sloping I need to also figure out how the trunk lids will be secure.  It kind of defeats the point if you have to get the packing tape out.  Deciding how to secure depends on first deciding whether to make it out of wood, plastic or metal.  Which brings us to the part that I know almost nothing about.

Oh shit...AND it needs handles.  Each side of each unit will need two:   one facing up in shelf mode, and one facing up in trunk mode.  They should probably be recessed for better stacking.  And we might want something even fancier to facilitate turning them sideways while the contents are still inside (since that is the whole point of this).

Wednesday, November 25, 2015


Finally managed to find a good club for salsa dancing, and it had a double lesson at the beginning of the night.  I think if I really applied myself, I could get into some trouble there.

Unfortunately I am too fat for all of my salsa shirts.    Had to go in a sweater, which was a dancing disaster.  I was barely moving and working up a sweat.  If there had been a girl or song I really liked I probably would have been drenched.  So I guess I have to either buy new salsa shirts, or find an FAQ on anorexia.

p.s. added onions to the stir fry.  AMAZING.


Hello, it's me
I was wondering if after all these years you'd like to meet
To go over everything


No I would not.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Achievement Unlocked: Volunteering

Made it through my first volunteering gig yesterday.  I would write more about it but I think I thawed some shrimp incorrectly because now I don't feel so hot.

There is a lego robotics gig, but it requires a multi-month commitment AND its before way before.  So I guess I'll pass on that for now.

I have to say I really, really, really like not having a job.

Monday, November 23, 2015

Clearing for Action

Never put off till tomorrow what may be done day after tomorrow just as well.
--Mark Twain

Here are the main things I have to do...the priority zeros as we used to call them at the company I just escaped:

  • evaluate job opportunity list (ongoing)
  • interview prep (2 weeks)
  • do like 50 errands that I've been putting off for two months (i.e. finish moving in)
  • try to visit all the old friends that I haven't seen since I moved back East
  • get ripped (? weeks)
  • learn to cook
Here are a couple things that I'd like to do, now that I have the time:
  • start volunteering (in progress)
  • more volleyball (in progress)
  • i guess i should do some fucking yoga again
  • learn how to remove burnt oil from a frying pan
  • learn how to remove smoke from an apartment
  • learn spanish
    • listen to "news in slow spanish"
    • learn how to karaoke "bailando"
    • execute that "learn spanish the fun way" app idea where girls in bikinis help you learn colors and strippers help you learn clothing
  • physical / hardware projects
    • finish the transforming shelves !!!! (waiting for prototype #2 to be mailed)
    • make LED fake candles that wirelessly recharge like my toothbrush and can be remote controlled AND have more lumens than normal fake candles
    • thing that texts you whenever your car door is opened
    • cube-based deep storage unit
    • remote, phone-controlled back massager
    • small freezer that can be remotely controlled via phone to turn into a fridge in order to defrost chicken (in case you forgot to take the chicken out of the freezer that morning)
  • dancing
    • salsa
    • blues
    • irish line dancing
  • grow social network
  • find a home bar to read at
  • investigate getting back into nerdy shit
  • learning
    • history
    • geopolitics
    • all of the evil shit the U.S. has done
    • african something
    • european history
    • women's whatever
    • age of sail: ships, history
  • fencing
  • medieval swordfighting (like broadswords and shit)
  • climbing
  • start playing the guitar again
  • legos
    • make another lego mosaic
    • make those "Weed Smugglers" lego sets
    • make a history book illustrated with legos (and containing directions).  include:
      • american revolution
      • age of sail
      • history of the East India Trading Companies and how the one almost took over England
  • buy a motorcycle
  • start racing motorcyclees
  • start racing cars
  • travel
    • seattle / hawaii
    • europe
  • independence / freedom / side income
    • project in between jobs
      • tour app?
      • km app?
      • more brainstorming
      • networking with other devs
  • buy some bitcoin and start using that bitcoin debit card
  • watch like a million stand up comic shows
  • learn how to ride a horse.  i need more equestraining in my life
  • projects I really want to do
    • write an app that shows you your zog sports schedule because their stupid website sucks ass on a phone
    • that "where did I park app"
    • asset tracking for people who move a lot
    • board game app (clue worksheet, 7 wonders scoring)
    • Unity3D but for Minecraft
    • guitar sightreading app (it just generates the music on the fly)
    • wedding planning [reception] seating arrangement software (you just input the constraints, like "bob fucking hates shelly" and boom!  its done)  -- is this np-complete?
    • app that shows you how to reprogram that stupid ass computer on Aprilia Falcos
    • social phone number blocking app (when you can an incoming call, this thing tells you if other people reported it being a spammer)
    • app that is a sailing reference for when reading Age of Sail fiction (Aubrey/Marturin series, etc)
    • the app for oh I can't actually write any of these down here.  There's more app ideas though
    • settlers board game generator
    • create my own minecraft engine
    • create a minecraft engine that has 4 spatial dimensions
    • create a simulation to test genetic and/or machine learning algorithms based on the survival of a digital species
    • personals scanner
    • create a warcraft-1-based simulation in an attempt to cause emergent intelligence
    • 3 SAT (need to just set up a machine to constantly test my algorithm and let it run forever)
    • app that is just lego instructions, make it easy for people to resell their instructions
    • app where I just press a single button on a tablet in the kitchen and it reorders shit...probably no one else will want this
    • Warcraft 2 + Minecraft.  You find a village, and you can help it grow by like building more farms yourself, and shit.  You can also find characters in dungeons the way people do in terraria
    • that "personal assistant" app so I can stop jotting all of my ideas down in my fucking calendar
  • books to write
    • another road ninja novel
    • "Fashion for Engineers"
    • see the history book under the lego list
    • short story collections, because that's how that one found me
  • lan parties
  • learn french
  • i guess go to a convention
    • pick up a girl at a convention, not because I want to, but because i read a blog post 5 years ago saying you shouldn't do it
    • hey do that have like sailing conventions?
  • visit a model train museum
  • experiment with that herbal alternative to aderall
  • experiment with caffeine+aderall
  • %s/ego/confidence/g  (no humility though;  fuck humility)
  • start flying again
  • dress up like a comic book or fantasy character, and do a funny music video for Danza Kuduro.
  • i need a more professional looking skype account
  • I need a personal-professional website (but dont put my name on it in case girls google my name)
  • need to finish website for skin care bullshit so i can add it to linked in
  • start using that 'hack' font
  • clean all those stupid cables under my desk (buy more cable ties)
  • finally get a maid
  • learn to sail
    • lean to sail for real, OR
    • go sailing on that frigate
  • get drunk and force myself to watch every episode of The Office without skipping forward, face palming, or cringing
  • start tutoring again
  • start using pinterest
  • i really need to get my shoes cobbled because they are falling apart
  • i need a second pair of shoes
  • go to a play, musical, opera, ballet, caberet, and a burlesque
    • should probably make that two burlesques, just to make sure I get enough culture
  • start playing poker
  • self improvement
    • robotics
    • machine learning
    • programming language breadth
      • check out the "Go" programming language
  • possibly start getting back on dating sites even before I repair my body
  • driving
    • get a tethered non-phone android device so I can start using waze without them getting my number
    • install a radar detector and lidar blocker.
    • possibly install a radar block and flip-up plate (although both are incredibly illegal)
    • get a metal safe, weld "FUCK YOU" on the inside, weld it shut and throw out the key, and leave it in my trunk in case the fucking cops ever search my car again
    • fixed-wing recon drone
    • smoke
  • need to start christmas shopping
  • finasteride and/or hair transplants.  or at least get a hair cut
  • go to one of those schools to learn how to repair motorcycles
  • the submersible idea
  • find sweatpants with zippers!
  • video games to play
    • fallout
    • dying light
    • metal gear 5
    • the new battlefront
    • that stupid rpg mod for minecraft that doesnt let you use the pickaxe
  • learn how to cook meatballs
  • start dressing like a boss.  no for real though
  • cosplay as a Sea [Post] Captain in His Britannic Majesty's Royal Navy
  • go to that lego thing in PA
  • buy a second pair of jeans

So that's the plan I guess.  I have until beginning of January.  Time to get to work, bitches.

The Far Side of the World

Manayunk, Philadelphia.  The place where college grads go to drink themselves into real adults.  I didn't realize how much I missed it until I was walking the streets again.  Of course, I don't know if I actually missed manayunk, or just felt nostalgia for the times I spent there.  What I do know is that socially speaking, I should have never left.

Whether or not to return now, of course, is a completely different story.

Monday, November 16, 2015


Its been a long haul, but as my current job comes to an end, it is time to make the difficult decisions.  I think I am going to spend the next 6 months touring the country with my folk band Clifford and the Walrus.  I'll see you on the road.