Solar Bugs

5 bugs in the sun…

A Family Reunion

I’m on my way to NY. Not NYC, but the real NY, upstate NY. You can’t walk 10 ft. in the area without finding an historical marker telling you about a battle, event, or person that was significant in the formation of this nation. You may not think about it much as a kid, but when you are mature enough to appreciate the significance of it all, it is really pretty amazing.
I’m not completely sure what the reunion is all about. It is my mom’s side if the family. We have not really had a lot of interaction with them for many years. But family is family. So when mom asked us ( me and my sisters) to attend, you don’t ask why. You ask “Where am I going?  And when do I need to be there?”  Everything else will sort itself out along the way.

Fri, August 6 2010 » Uncategorized » No Comments

All hail the new Mac Mini.

I have been on a bit of an Apple kick lately.  I have had iPods for years, and a couple years ago I jumped to the iPhone.  I have had a Mac Mini that I use at work for a couple years too.  I am fairly agnostic when it comes to platforms and Operating Systems.  I use a Dell Studio XPS for my daily laptop.  I have an iPad for glancable data, monitoring, news, RSS and other fun stuff.  I use a Mac Mini to keep current with Apple “things” and to assist with support of our Mac users, and to admin my several Linux servers (I primarilly use Redhat, and CentOS).

At home I run my own weather station, website, and participate in the Stanford Quake Catcher Network.  I had a couple of older linux boxes in a rack in the garage.  They were loud, and sucked down about 300 watts.  When the new Mac Mini was announced, I decided the time was right, and so was the price.  So a 1U and a 3U server were replaced with a single Mac Mini.  The Mini uses about 15-22 watts (As measured by a Kill-o-Watt meter).  It is virtually silent.  It takes up a small corner of my desk instead of a rack in the garage.  Plus, I get all the regular Mac bells and whistles.  I can now use iMovie, etc.  If I really wanted I could install Windows 7 virtualized.  But I have a regular uber PC box for that. (more…)

Mon, July 26 2010 » Uncategorized » No Comments

So what’s new with you?

Around here I am up to my neck-erchief in Scout “stuff”.  I am definately over my 1 hour per week quota.  Even if you average out the couple of weeks that I have not done anything related to Scouts.  But honestly – I would not trade the time spent with my sons for anything.  This time can never be replaced, or recouped.  There are probably a lot of things I don’t do right as a father.  I am pretty sure this is one of the things I do right.

 So far this Summer:

  • Managed Water Rocket Derby
  • Attended 3 day, 2 nights, Cub Scout resident Camp with entire den of 9 boys.
  • 5 days as Twilight Camp.  Provided First-Aid for the week.
  • 4th of July Parade.  Organized and marched with the boys.
  • 7 days, 6 nights at Boy Scout resident camp.  (Pico Blanco)   The troop earned over 100 merit badges and we did several board of reviews in camp.

Fri, July 23 2010 » Uncategorized » No Comments

GE Profile Microwave Repair

In went the cup of water for tea and pop went the fuse.  So I replaced it.  But then it popped again.  A pattern was emerging.  It seemed to me, and my wife, that it only happened when opening or closing the microwave door.  Since this was a built-in with a rather expensive trim kit I figured I would take a crack at fixing it.  The first trick to replacing the fuse was finding the bits for the security torx screws that attached the case on the back of the microwave.  At the hardware store, if you don’t see it on the shelf, ask.  In this case they keep the security torx in a cabinet.  They are not on the sales floor with the other driver bits, at least not in this particular store.  So, with that challenge out of the way it was on to figuring out what was causing the fuse to blow. 

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Tue, January 5 2010 » Uncategorized » No Comments

Mostly dead means somewhat alive.

dvp2Turns out this blog, and My weather station were only mostly dead.  So here I post…

My weather station is back online.  About a week ago, a friend of our neighbor was over and he just happened to be one of the senior meteorologists for the NWS in the Bay Area.  Speaking with him was the kick in the ___ that I needed to dig into the server and software to get it back online.  The weather to the right over there is from my own weather station.  I have been an amateur weather geek for quite some time.  I am not certain why.  We only have 3 seasons in California – Green, Brown, and Fire.

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Fri, October 2 2009 » Uncategorized » No Comments

Hello world!

Welcome to Solar Bugs.  This site actually began back in 1999 with a project to install solar panels on my home.  The site has changed many times since then.  It has been through numerous server crashes and hosting company changes.  Maybe someday I will put Humpty Dumpty back together again.  But these days most my time is spent on our Cub Scout and Boy Scout pages for the boys.  So don’t expect too much to show up here.

Thanks for stopping by…

Mon, August 3 2009 » Uncategorized » 1 Comment