Monday, 24 June 2019

the collecting continues

I know, I know, another one....but its a Raspberry :D and its cool and cheap.. though I couldn't wait to throw my money at the top range 4GB version.

This is amazing, might have to write another book just to fully appreciate it.

Its nice to get excited about something, though I worry at the things I get excited about.


Saturday, 8 June 2019

Maybe I took the collecting a bit too far?

I decided to lay out the contents of the drawer of shame... I have a lot of toys....
No. in all seriousness they are there for a reason, I need to be sure my book projects work on as many SBC's as possible so that someone buying the book with a particular SBC can (or can't if thats the case I can let them know) run all the projects and get a good experience rather than  frustration of getting something to work that won't play nice.

58 of them here, theres a few others dotted around the house or office though, all mine except for the Nvidia Nano, top next to the pinebook, which is the schools, and I'm experimenting with its GPU.
Impressive and sad at the same time eh :D
I didn't buy ALL of them though, many were donated by the makers for review and test and I am very grateful to them for saving my wallet a little bit of damage. Even at an average of $30-50 its adds up when you buy too many of them.

Generally I love my Raspberry's they are reliable and dependable no matter what I do with them, even if not the fastest. The Odroids are beasts, the new RockPi4 is A. M. zing.. The Nano is out of this world and the Nano Pi's are generally really cool systems. Orange and Banana Pi's are a bit of a let down generally due to their shocking software, but for the most part they work..just.
The new range of Rockchip boards, Tinkerboard, Rock 64 and Nano Pi's are stunning and will be an interesting point of progression for the SBC concept.

Some of the more exotic (listen to me trying to make this sound interesting..exotic) ones like the VIM2 and Libre boards are all a bit dissapointing but can be made to work in emulation modes.
The Intel based Up!'s are by far the fastest but also among the most expensive, I only got them due to discounts on kickstarter, but even so only the base models. In practice they are not very mainstream. but certainly great to work on.

The Nvidia is very cool but needs careful coding to get the best out of it, got a 128core GPU, compered to the rest which average 4 (the Up's have 12-16) and can do incredible things when you are careful to really use the GPU.

Its all fun, the only downside is trying to work out what goes wrong with them sometimes when the software is crap and the makers have not put graphic drivers with fun fun.


Tuesday, 28 May 2019

lost a few

Well I cheated a bit but am still managing to maintain a much lower calorie intake over the week, and keeping myself hungry

But it is working, I've shed a few kilos so far, not quite the 5 kg a week I need  to get my bikini bod ready in a month, but if I can keep it up, I should be looking ripped sometime in August....2022.

The band are engaged in making a video, so we have had 1 outdoor location shoot, which was fun, no playing yet, just lots of chat shots and looking windswept and interesting..
3 more location shoots to go and a studio shoot where we will record 3 of our best songs..thats coming up on Thursday.

Work progresses apace. been doing the freelance project at weekends and evenings, not too many hiccups, its been a while since I used Unity and its updated features threw me a bit sometimes but I'm finally getting into a flow. Though my Oculus headset seems to be a bit unpredictable sometimes...I'm trying to not use it until I really need to.

Not much else to report, waiting for summer hols and hoping the freelance gig's boost to my finances will be felt.


Sunday, 12 May 2019

first weekend done.

The "new" diet and health plan, is pretty simple, lots of salad, including celery, we'll test the theory you use more calories chewing it than it provides. But also lettuce, grated carrots,  small cherry tomatoes, shallots, spring onion and the secret ingrediant, a small portion of pearl couscous (cooked in stock) with....some kind of meat, or veggie soya chopped up and mixed. A considerably smaller portion than I usually have, ie, 1 burger, 2 small sausages, half a chicken breast, half a steak etc. I could also use cheese or nuts if I'm on a meat free day.
I will try to avoid too many carbs,  so chips, mash and rice need to be rationed.
(I tend to have 1 meat free day a week, I'm going to up that to 3, but not rigidly)

Add some fruit in the shape of a chopped apple, or segmentated tangerine and thats the bulk of my salad.

The salad is tossed in cider and balsamic vinegar with a little seseme oil and seseme seeds.. and  served. on top of the hot coucouse mix...

When all added up, its a carrot, 3 sticks of celery, a quarter of a lettuce, a shallot or half an onion,  and 6 cherry tomatoes, with 100g of couscous and a burger, or some crispy bacon, chicken or whatever, only a small amount of meat, the rest is all veg and very crunchy tasty and filling.

I can certainly live on this for a few weeks..

Far too early for it to have an impact of coruse, but at least I'm not feeling like I'm starving to death. That and the morning 4 spoons of  Musli with semi skimmed milk, and a very light lunch of an ommlette or 1 pack of noodles.. and I'm waaaay und 1500cals a day, as opposed to my usual ,...well more than 2,500.

I can have a bit of fruit as a snack, but thats pretty much it. As long as I don't feel constantly hungry and I'm eating much less the weight should drop off.
I've found sipping ice cold diet cola keeps the evening hunger pangs at far.

Oh and longer dog walks. as well as excuses to take them, Harvey is not at all impressed though. He's now very old and quite grumpy so hates being lead around, for him a trip out to the grass to be savoured by 20 mins of sniffing before deciding on which blade of grass he pees on. A brisk walk isn' tthis idea of fun at all. Especially it has been noted during the day time when the sun is shining, he's pretty blind now but can see bright lights and finds the transition from shadow to sunshine a bit uncomfortable, causing him to shudder an stop in his tracks.

Anyway... thats the plan, I'll do a weigh in on Monday mornings rather than daily, and we'll see if the trend is down..


Friday, 10 May 2019

finally, short hair

At last, I managed to get to the barbers and they were open. I'm all shorn and looking smoooookin'

well tidy at least.

My efforts to diet have been well document on this blog, and its depressing reading back how I keep starting and tailing off, and again ending up like a real life Homer Simpson, (with hair). As much as I admire the chap, I don't want to look like him or have an early heart attack or T2 Diabetes. I keep catching sight of myself in windows and mirrors...jeez I'll be ordering Moo Moo's soon.

Going to have one more try to get both fitter and lighter this year, no point posting the current weights (98.5 you fat bastard) but I do need to get down below 80, ideally around 70. I'm really quite a skinny chap trapped in a fat body, so we'll have to shed a lot of blubber to actually find the real me under this.

I just don't enjoy being hungry, its not something I can easily resist, so need to try to make a lot more effort to reduce my calorie intake and portion sizes...I don't many takaways these days due to finance issues but I do stuff my face with noodles and freezer steaks (I buy big sides of steak and cut them myself and freeze. It works out much cheaper but its very tempting), and am prone to a home made kebab or burger before bed...has to stop.

After 28 years it turns out Danni has a name for her cute and endearing little eye blink she has when chewing, or as a baby, sucking, its called Marcus Gunn syndrome or Winking Jaw syndrome... She discovered this herself with a bit of google fu.  Its not really a problem in any health way, her mum and I thought it was cute when she was a baby and she's never been troubled by it. But we didn't even know it had a name, the doctors at the time dismissed it as nothing. Its quite rare apparently.. Always thought sprog was special :D


Saturday, 4 May 2019

need a haircut sooooo bad

The Dutch are strange, most of them seem to like my currently unkempt but windswept and interesting hair, but it really is too long. Two abortive attempts to go to my barber have made me more determined to get it cut, but currently very busy finishing things up on the coding side to get another project off the ground.

The Mayday/spring break holiday has been fun and quite relaxing, lots of long lie ins, late nights, and not too much drinking, just getting the hell away from computers for much of the time, but still missing the barbers who have been keeping odd hours, (or I just missed the opening times) due to all the different events going on this week.

Hopefully I can catch them open sometime next week, getting too tired of blowing hair out of my face when playing guitar.

My PC seems to have resolved its issue after a bit of a rebuild and resetting of its bios.  But it is quite old now, so when the finances allow I need to build something new and try not to lose what I have on my current system...which is my usual reason for not upgrading.. Its not that I don't have backups, thats just for data,  but setting up a new PC takes weeks to ensure you have all the same tools, set up the same way and I hate that.

No big tax rebate this year,  the lack of book royalties and some income from the band basically meant I almost made a profit, but there were the website costs and a couple of bits of equipment, but a small return at least pays for my awesome accountats efforts.

In band news...
We have a couple more gigs coming up 1 public one private, and we're performing at a wedding which is super exciting. We need to learn a few new songs but they are going to be nice additions.


Thursday, 18 April 2019

Ah good, things are looking up

Well it looks like one of my new projects is about to start, that will make a big difference to teh finances and give me a bit more focus that I am needing.

This weekend we have gigs to get ready for, and today I got this through the door. It really cheered me up seeing our band featuring on the flyer. We're going back where we started and it will be a lovely day.
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Strangely today a trip to see a student in Leiden went horribly wrong when I got the train stations mixed up and tried to walk to the office from Centraal Station...which is an hours walk and not the 15 mins I was told.. hardely mattered, it was a lovely day, and my 1st time in Leiden meant I was totally lost and got to have a look around. What a nice place.. I'll have to go back next week, so I'll try to have a proper nosey around. And who might also be the start of a new chapter...we'll see.

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