I hemmed and hawed and overshopped for months before spending a couple of bucks on a refurb Das Keyboard. It is a sturdy keyboard, no doubt, and I was really enjoying it. And then one night I splashed some beer into it while podcast recording. It appeared to kill a couple of the switches and gum up a couple of others. It was a bummer. I took the keyboard apart to clean what I could, but if didn’t make a difference. The non-responsive keys remained non-responsive, even after a couple of days of drying out.

I kept the keycaps I pulled and put the whole thing off to the side to try to figure something out.

The internet suggested that there was no way to bring it back. Any liquid that got to the switched would end up causing corrosion in the underlying board.

Today, after probably six months of looking at the loose keycaps and lamenting the loss, I plugged the old horse in to see if maybe it just needed to dry up completely. And now it works! The left Shift key is still a little sluggish, but I am more than capable of powering through that.

Now I need to unlearn all of the Windows-keyboard habits I had picked up. It’s a little weird having a proper Command key.

Square-edged 6+ would be a nice thing.

Dr. Drang make a good point here about the small iPhone form factor. It’s going to be great for some people but being able to choose the larger-sized device with squared edges would be even better. The 6+ screen size is what I want but the rounded edges make it impossible for me to hold securely.

I’m no case-hater, either. The iPhone 5 was the first time I went without and it was fine. I had the 6+ for about 20 minutes before I went case shopping. The material plays a role but it’s the rounded edges that make it a bad caseless fit for my hands.

Alexa via Raspberry Pi

I’m going to do this.

I got a Raspberry Pi for my birthday and intended to use it as a Media Center PC with some Plex functionality too. I wanted a catch-all media player for the bedroom tv. Those plans were scuttled because I didn’t consider remote control support for the device. This was short-sighted thinking on my part (and my DiY hopes were dashed by a smart sale on the Roku 2).

This GitHub project to bring the Alexa functionality (which reports seem to indicate is pretty cool) to my little Pi seems like an excellent use of time and effort. I only need to add minimal hardware and the GitHub project page says only two skills are required: Basic programming experience and Familiarity with shell.

I have neither of those. I’ve never used GitHib for anything.

I do, however, have the next week off for Spring Break as well as a desire to make this work.

Gabe from Penny Arcade apologized

Here’s the link to the whole thing. It’s worth the read. I think it’s a refreshing and measured response from someone who was (justifiably) raked over the internet coals a couple times last year. I still get a chuckle out of the over-the-line strips they publish. I can see where those jokes come from but I also understand the “need to separate the busted kid from the man I am now”. I’m willing to take it at face value and if he makes sincere changes, then good for him.

Happy 2014!

My 2013 was a-okay and I hope  yours was, too.

I’m planning to make this old spot a one-stop shop for all of my internetting. I’ll still have things I post to Twitter and Facebook and Instagram but I’m going to be sure it all gets dropped here, too. The idea of “recapturing my own content” has been going around the internet lately and since I’ve got the space (and the occasional thing to say) I plan to take a crack at it.

I’m not going to make a Big 14 list like the 13 I did last year. One of the important lessons of 2013 was to spend more time doing stuff and less time talking about what I wanted to do. It turned out that I didn’t get nearly as much done last year as I planned and it was still a great year. I could look at getting 6 of the 13 things done as a failure (as it would be by any reasonable grading scale) but I got so much out of the 6 that’s in an easy passing grade.

I definitely have things I want to work on this year and I’ve already started some groundwork on them. I plan to post here when I have something to talk about.

I’ll see you then.

Time Hole – Cookie Clicker

cookie clicked

Holy crap has this thing swallowed me whole. Every now and again I will get way into one of these silly desktop games but they don’t usually come with this much carpal tunnel damage. I mean, you just click the cookie. What could possibly go wrong?

I think I’m close to the end game so I’m going to stick with it a little longer. It’s not good for my productivity, though, so not more than another day or two. I didn’t delete 90% of the games from my iPhone just to jump neck-deep into some other distraction.