SitRep

Christ I haven’t done one of these in a long, long time. Let’s do this thing.

We got a dog. A “Whoodle” (a cross between a Wheaten Terrier and a “Moyen” Poodle). She’s amazing and wonderful and a terror.

No goats yet. The garden and the dog and the transition back to in-person school and work were enough of a change that adding a pile of farm animals to the mix seemed a bit much. Still on the long-term plans, but need to do a shed and pasture fencing and whatnot first.

New garden was good- with more improvements to come. Larger, better use of compost and water, and more variety still. Corn! Herbs! More flowers! More fruit trees! Berries!

“New” bike is excellent. Walt was a pleasure to work with during a very difficult time, and he built a bike that was everything I could ask for. It was built for the type of riding I like, and boy does it excel at that. I’m still learning how to really exploit what it can do on the trail, but I’m also trying to shift to riding in flats on that bike.

I’ve been spending more time listening to music during work, and that means starting to spend time paying attention to the both the music I have and how I listen to that music. Short version: I’m going through my records and I have record players out again.

Update and Sitrep

Let’s see where things stand.

We did our first big trip with the family out west this summer to the Tetons, Dinosaur National Monument, and Yellowstone. I was initially worried about crowds at Yellowstone, but our trip was excellent. A totally, unmitigated success.

There are several new projects at work to stand up- two new Master’s programs, several smaller grants & stand alones, and a slightly higher degree of support for some existing programs (some instructor turn over and whatnot).

Bike projects about- I’m starting the long-term prep for a potential go at the D2R2 ride in August 2020. I’m currently considering the 100k option (which, like all the routes, is mostly unpaved, unmarked, and very hilly). The full-banana is a 180k option, but there’s an ungodly amount of climbing, and I’d rather start somewhat more conservatively on a first attempt. Anyway, that means the gravel bike (which has so far been mostly assembled as a proof-of-concept) will need to be brought up to full-spec. Drivetrain changes are sorted, but fenders, brakes, and rider fit need some ongoing refinement.

I’ve made some progress with the studio- though not as much as I’d like. Summer was, predictably, super busy, and there weren’t as many opportunities to invest large blocks of time as I might have hoped. Still- a bunch of stuff put into storage, some better organization, and I’ve opened up a good amount of floor space. I’m pleased it’s a much more efficient space to create in- that’s a major priority for me- but I think the next phase will further improve it’s function (and aesthetics)

I’ve been teaching myself to braze. Joining metal together is a powerful skill- it allows you to build things that mostly aren’t possible any other way, and brazing is (I think) the lowest cost entry into that world. I’ve brazed aluminum before, but that’s a much lower temperature (and much less strong) process, so I really wanted to get into brass brazing steel. It’s super fun, and I still have loads to learn, but it’s rewarding and maybe even useful.

Updates

I’ve updated the layout of this site- I’ve made the home page of the site static, and I’ve moved the Blog portion to the left side menu.

I’ve been updating my status blog for three months now, every day. Honestly, I’m not sure how much longer I’ll continue to do that.

I’m itching for a couple of larger building projects for the studio. The full-sized rack mount, a turntable stand (with aux gear) on casters, some large format art storage, and one or two other smaller bits. It’s so close, and I’d just like to get this phase sorted all the way.

There’s a long-term project I’m spending some time prepping for, too- travel with the family. That means a bunch of gear, so I’ll be busy designing/building/testing some of that in the coming months.

SitRep

I’m not entirely sure what to say, still. Regardless:

  • New bike frame has been ordered, shipped, and has come. Headset gets pressed in tomorrow, then a build (and maybe a ride. maybe). Pics when it’s together. I’ll say it’s steel, uses 26″ wheels, has a rear disc brake mount, and more “modern” geometry than the previous ride (which is a bit of a joke, it seems to me. But that’s a longer post).
  • New(ish) logo on this page- in the left menu, as well as in the title bar. Not 100% yet on it, but no reason to let perfect get in the way of progress.
  • I’ve started thinking about a new shoulder bag. Some of my jackets don’t really want to work properly with my backpack (anything with structured shoulders, really…), and so a shoulder bag is in the mix. I’d be pretty ok with one of these, I suspect- well, every aspect other than the price tag. So: drafting plans here. Could be a while, though. Tends to be how it goes.
  • I think I’m ready to really dive into a re-design of a trench coat I picked up. It’s a lovely thing, but it’s build as an over coat, and the layers it was built to wear over are significantly bulkier than anything I’m going to be wearing under it. And it needs some other work, too, so that’s a thing.

 

SitRep

New(ish)

  • 20mm to 15mm x 110mm front axel conversions for bicycle front wheels
  • Remaking a small shoulder bag to replace my existing (NF-P-126 spec)
  • Graphic Design Accessibility Standards (hints, anyone?)
  • Small tool organization
  • Movable vice mounting (casters are a terrible option)
  • 650b bike rims with an internal width of 38mm and welded seams
  • I’ve begun a shoe re-sole, but I need to build up a midsole somewhat before I continue

SitRep

Oh, my, how times flies. Things that have/are happening:

  • The shelf project lags on. Honestly, I’m polyurethane away from being done, but the temperatures have just been too low.
  • New computer project- progress! A slightly batty solution, perhaps, but interesting none-the-less.
  • Summer shoe purchase has arrived- the spiritual successor to my favorite summer shoes of all them, the mesh slip-on converse all stars (which, for reasons I don’t understand, they don’t make anymore).
  • At work, I’ve been working on some best practices for online video- and now I’m at the storyboard-it-out phase. I’m not looking forward to being on camera for this end product, but that’s part of the job, you know?
  • I’m shaping spacers to replace the tweeters on my vintage KLH Model 30 Speakers- these are hopefully destined for the study room, and they’re two steps away from done: new tweeters installed and speaker grill fabric replaced with something less hideous.
  • This site saw a bit of a behind the scenes overhaul- there were some nasty people trying to brute force their way into the WordPress install here, and I had to take some steps to deal with that. Done, anyway.

It’s Back.

So- it’s time. The newsletter is back.
I sent out a smaller edition of it last week, and that was fine. But it was short, and I’m hoping this week will be the first full-sized edition in a few weeks [edit: nope! still a small one…]. To that end, if you’ve not subscribed, you probably should (the sign up form is over on the left side of this page). I’ve realized that by volume, the vast majority of my writing is *actually* in my newsletters. Sure, they’re composed of a few links a week, but I try to offer some commentary as well as some context for my choices. Remember, what I’m trying to offer is a steady stream of useful and inspiring material that you might not have stumbled on yourself.
Anyway.
If you’ve been following here, you know that I’m “in between” computers at the moment. As a result, I’ve been writing and working on an iPad as my “primary” device- though, I suppose, if you were to do the math by calculating hours of screen time, my iPhone would be my “primary.” Whatever. The iPad I’ve been using used to be in heavy rotation by my kids, but they recently got upgraded devices, so me, not being someone who lets something go to waste, decided to see if I could make use of their old devices. I’m writing this now on an iPad. Not an iPad2, not an iPad Air, an iPad. The first one. OG.
Honestly? Not bad. I’d rather browse the web via my phone anyway, so that’s not much of a hangup. And I’d rather play games or consume media elsewhere, too- so that’s not much of an issue. Indeed, what I use this for is writing and drawing (and, I suppose, to a lesser degree for reading…). I just picked up a docking keyboard (the original Apple deal- which has a much nicer keyboard action that it has any right to…) for something like $6 on eBay. It’s a wickedly nice setup, now- it looks nice where it lives (which is weirdly the kitchen counter), it comes apart easily, and it’s a decent sized screen for me to write on. I managed to research, write, edit, do the graphic work, and send the newsletter entirely from this here ancient device. Not too shabby, eh? And this keyboard? No joke, this thing here. Great key action, lovely dedicated buttons to lock/unlock/home/play/volume/etc, and (this might be the best part) Tab actually works to move from text field to text field on the web. That’s key (sorry).
So. Where to next?
Obviously, my ancient device system isn’t workable for all my projects- I like the iPad on the counter in the kitchen, but it won’t do for heavy lifting tasks (In my world, that’d be photo management and editing, video editing and management, IoT development, and other administrative tasks). Clearly, then, a new computer is in the works. Likely an iMac, likely 27″, likely Retina. Speaking of IoT, that’s further to the front of my mind than ever. I have a garage project in the works for that, and the list of things I’d like to do keeps growing faster than I can manage, so plenty left on that front. Also, a slew of crafting projects (mostly in front of a sewing machine), and some looming house projects (getting the library up and running, for example). Plenty to keep busy.

Current EDC Update

Oh my. Never a dull moment with this (mostly because I’m never really satisfied). Current:

  • iPhone 5s 16bg Space Grey in a Magpul case
  • Ikea Kullar Vacuum flask
  • CORTIÇA mug
  • Custom CP3 Ti ring
  • Croton 1878 (on a silicone deployment band)
  • Friday & River wallet
  • Uniball Signo Micro 206 (0.38 black)
  • Retrakt Aluminum (G2 0.5 Black refill)
  • Field Notes Dark As Night x2
  • Leuchtturm1917 (standard size, dot grid)
  • Canonet QL17 Giii (this thing seems pretty sweet- though the meter isn’t working [yet] and I’ve just redone the light seals, so…)
  • Kershaw/Emerson CQC
  • Custom Bag (NF-P-815)

EDC Update

It’s been a month, and I’ve changed a few things around and whatnot.

Current carry is:

  • iPhone 5s 16gb Verizon Space Grey
  • Kershaw Chilli
  • Croton 1878 (on a silicone deployment band)
  • Custom CP3 Titanium Ring
  • Friday & River wallet
  • Uniball Signo Micro 206 (0.38 black)
  • Retrakt Aluminum (G2 0.5 Black refill)
  • Field Notes Red Blooded (x2)
  • Leuchtturm1917 (standard size, dot grid)
  • Nikon 8008s w/ Konica Hexanon 40mm f1.8 lens (via Fotodiox adapter)
  • HumanGear GoTubb (medium, x2)
  • Custom Bag (NF-P-126)

Places to find me.

In case you’ve ever wanted more places to find me (and the stuff I like, produce, or pontificate…), I thought I’d put together a list. In general, I work under the name nothingfuture– but here’s as complete a list as I can currently come up with:

Some of these aren’t in high use (pinterest, G+, ello) some are mostly for consumption (vimeo, soundcloud), and the rest are for producing/posting/sharing/ranting (twitter, tumblr, flickr, youtube). Even there, flickr is mostly for storage & content mining, if I’m honest. There are other, abandoned & orphaned accounts out here (foursquare, I’m looking at you…), but they’re as good as dead to me (and I only keep them open to maintain control of the username).

Of the active accounts, here’s what I use them for:

twitter

This is where my day-to-day comments go, though there’s always been a pretty heavy educational slant to my postings there. I’m not as active as I once was (which wouldn’t take much), but it’s still a place I check often. I use the API to do a bunch of archiving here as well- it’s a great research tool as well.

instagram

This is a favorite of mine- though I’ve been experimenting with it of late. I used to use it to share the quick shots of my life, but lately I’ve been taking a higher-quality view of what I post there (ironic, given the wildly poor quality of the media). All my content there is original to me- no reposts, no fluff, no filler.

tumblr

I’ve had one of these for a long time now- years. I’d mostly ignored it for a while, but recently I’ve been investing more time in it, and the more time I spend with the platform, the more I like it. Like, a lot. In fact, if someone was talking to me about wanting to start an online platform for themselves, I’d recommend tumblr before most other options. It’s very, very good. My instagram posts are cross posted here, but most of what goes here is not content created by me- I mine other platforms for content that speaks to me, and it gets queued here. This blog gets auto-posted 8 times a day, between 7am EST and 8pm EST. All I do is keep the queue full of good content. Also, tumblr is an amazing content consumption platform- it’s a self-contained RSS reader for other tumblr blogs.

youtube

I’ve had a number of projects in video over the last million years- and youtube is the place (right now, anyway) to post that stuff. I like the compression on vimeo better (uploaded videos literally look nicer there), but youtube has the audience and the infrastructure of google behind it, so there you go. My instagram videos are posted here in all their non-cropped less compressed 14 second glory. Longer work makes it’s home here.