Kafe Tourer

Ah, Motorcycles, how I love thee. I’ve got a few ideas about my motorbike restoration job, and have decided that I need to separate “planning” from “action” – so here is the dreamline, whilst the build log can live elsewhere in the projects space<. Some time ago, I bought a 1990 BMW K100LT for a bit of a camping tour down south, culminating in a weekend at the MotoGP on Philip Island.

Badgey

Just imagine if you could gamify “adulting” … I’ve noticed that I’m a bit of a sucker for a “badge” — some online representation of an achievement or challenge — in that it drives my behaviour such that I will do things for the sake of the badge rather than for any merit the act may have. For example, I’ve got a lot of badges on Untappd, and I’m more likely to drink craft beer because of it, even tho’ it runs counter to my goal of becoming hyperfit.

Porsche 356 Electric Replica

It’s a thing of beauty…

Deadzone and WH40k Minatures

This is one of those hobbies which those who pursued would have done in their teenage years. Well, I missed out somehow (not willing to embrace my geek nature perhaps?) but it won’t stop me from giving it a go as a forty year-old man. Is that sad? You know what, I don’t care. As a science-fiction fanatic (and nascent boardgame geek) tabletop war-gaming is right up my alley: good strategic gameplay, great “fluff”/mythos, and some cool imaginary tech to explore and contemplate.

Bottlehead Crack Valve Amp

Agent Bingo Robot

A couple of years ago, Jules got given a cheap toy robot, and it wasn’t long before it broke. He wasn’t too fussed1 and eventually let me tear it to pieces. My big plan was to use the bot as a platform for experimentation, but of course you can see from the dates on the ‘blog entries that it just didn’t happen. Plans find all the pieces test the DC motor drivers and an Arduino brain to return Bingo to “feature parity” Add ultrasonic distance sensors Add an LED display to his face or body … robot uprising Well, I don’t remember him being too fussed anyway.

Picobrewery

Oh man, this is cool: a benchtop brewery/brewing robot out of the US. Can I get one please? (Probably need to find our dream home first.)

Openlumify

I worked for a “data discovery and analytics platform” company1 for a couple of years, and got to see first-hand the power of graph-based datastores for analysis, hypothesis-testing and pattern discovery. It truly was an example of intelligence amplification and allowed the analysts I worked with to work more effectively than ever. Since that day I’ve had a desire to map things out, to build a kind of mega-mindmap2 to really understand some of the more complex and complicated situations — ancient and modern history, the middle east, US politics, the powerful people behind every conspiracy theory imaginable…

Mechanical Keyboards

As the primary user interface for many generations of computer users, the humble keyboard surely deserves its place in the history books as one of the twentieth century’s greatest inventions. From the surface, at least, it appears to be largely unchanged since the electric typewriter of the ’30s, with the layout even older still — a lattice of switches which, when closed, send an appropriate electrical signal to the computing device — and as a frequent, heavy computer user, I should probably have paid more attention.

Craft beer

Ah, beer – the great civiliser. As noted in the New York Times: Current theory has it that grain was first domesticated for food. But since the 1950s, many scholars have found circumstantial evidence that supports the idea that some early humans grew and stored grain for beer, even before they cultivated it for bread. Brian Hayden and colleagues at Simon Fraser University in Canada provide new support for this theory in an article published this month (and online last year) in the Journal of Archeological Method and Theory.