How long until Christmas – Node Project

Today was the day! I decided I was going to rebuild one of my smaller projects, howlonguntilchristmas.co.uk. This isn’t so much a design exercise, primarily a development exercise. I’ve been wanting to start playing around with Node for a while, and this seemed like the perfect opportunity. I ended up using the Express framework for Node, which was incredibly easy to use. As far as frameworks go, it seemed to deliver just what was needed.

It’s now running on a small droplet over at DigitalOcean, making use of nginx, forever and NewRelic to keep things turning over nicely. It wasn’t a complex project at all, but it was very fun. I do enjoy working with Node, I’m looking forward to trying some meatier projects with it in the future.

 

Fresh installs all around

After experiencing issues with both my phone (Nexus 4) and my Macbook (it was starting to get very sluggish), I decided to take some time over the weekend and do a fresh OS install on both devices.

Unfortunately, Android 4.4 hasn’t been released yet so it’s still only running 4.3, but it’s not as laggy as it was before the reset. I’m still getting the odd random crash, but it’s definitely a marked improvement over what it was.

Whilst I was performing a clean OS X install, I opted for Mavericks. There are a few features that would be very useful in my day to day use of the mac, so figured it was worth risking. I’ve heard lots of good things about it, so why not. I haven’t performed a fresh install since I got the Macbook, back in October 2012. So far, so good. First impressions are a slightly improved battery life. Definitely seems to last longer than it did before. The rest is a ‘time will tell’ scenario, but I can’t imagine it’ll be that bad.

Better late than never

I’ve put off doing this for.. I can’t even remember how long. But, here I am. There are so many different projects and ideas I’d like to give a go, they’re all over the place. My first tinker is going to be with a Raspberry Pi, that I’ve had for ages but have yet to use. LCD modules, motors, servo controllers, laser diodes, motion sensors. I have enough components to come up with something entertaining.

I’m going to start by getting some of these components to work with the Pi, and then come up with a idea to use it all. At the moment I’m thinking a motorised cat toy, obviously with some kind of armouring otherwise it’s going to be absolutely trashed.

There’s just something about cats, lasers, wheels and some basic AI that sounds like fun!