Replaced rain sensor on weather station at my in-laws
Tested running 3 Dallas 1-wire sensors over a 25 foot / 7.5 metre
ethernet cable: one twisted pair element each for positive, ground
and signal. Worked a treat! These are going to be buried in the
garden there to get soil temperatures at different depths
First POTA activation: Ve-3300, Cariboo Hill Park. 21 contacts,
including 2 park-to-park. Closest I’ve come yet to a pileup.
Power went out at my house for a few hours, so I used the time to
make contacts on my homebrew magloop on 20m while it was dead quiet.
Made England, plus one with KD6JUI/MM, who was kayaking (!) with a
homebrew magloop (!!).
CQ WPX contest: 55 contacts over 3 days. I’ll be honest, it was a
bit of a chore by the end. But I managed to make New Zealand on 5W,
and Australia on 5W on 40m (!).
Replace failing hard drive for Zombie, the home server that does it
More work on the anemometer. My father-in-law built a shelter for
this to keep the rain off, and we’ve now got the sensors/magnets
permanently (*with crazy glue) mounted on the arms.
First attempt at POTA, at a local park. Unfortunately, I only got
four QSOs, so no good. I think part of that is probably due to the
location: it was in a lower part of the park, and it seemed to
A while back I started exploring data from the Reverse Beacon
Network. My initial goal had been to come up with an ML model to
predict how many DX stations the local skimmer would receive – but
there was a lot of exploration of the data as well. I captured that
exploration in a series of notebooks, and set aside the project
after a while.
One of the things I never accomplished was a satisfying display of
where stations were being received from. I was aiming for something
that would show changes over time, as well as location. Yesterday I
was browsing through this Kaggle notebook for the BirdCLEF 2021
competition when I saw a cool map being generated from something
called a shape file. A bit of browsing through the Internet found
some great tutorials, and I think I have a better sense of what I
The Libre Space Foundation (and thus Polaris) was accepted for the
Google Summer of Code, and we had bunch of awesome students show
up in our chat room. A lot of work came out of that: coaching
students, evaluating their MRs, giving early feedback on proposals,
and helping them find their way through the codebase and the
problems. But these are definitely good problems to have!
Dig into more options for image augmentation, including Albumentation
Came up with a rough prototype for the Dishwasher Loading
Critic: a (poorly) trained model, sitting behind an API written
in Fast, with a copied bootstrap template. I was able to post
pictures to it from my phone & get some (poor) bounding boxes around
Still trying to figure out where I want to go with this project:
stick with Detecto, or move to PyTorch? I’d like to do the latter,
but I have a lot of learning to do there.
Got LSP-mode enabled for Emacs. Interesting, and I suspect this
will be a way forward for Emacs.
Tried Paperspace again after their upgrade, and WOW: it’s
blazingly fast to start up. I’m going to re-open my account with
Finally got Fedora 33 installed on an Intel NUC. The problem had
been that wifi did not work after installation, even though it
worked during installation. Turns out there’s a bug where
wpa-supplicant is not installed during installation; installing it
afterward by hand did the trick.
Learned about nftables…huh.
First prototype of anemometer working – I’m now able to get RPM
read and displayed in Grafana. Apparently, the best option open to
me for calibrating this thing is to use a car: hold it out the
window, go at a set speed, and take measurements.
Began Chapter 9 of the FastAI book. This is on tabular
learning, which is really interesting; I think this is the sort of
approach I’d want to take for loostmap, my attempt to predict
HF propagation by looking at data from the Reverse Beacon Network
(I picked that project name from a random name generator…I really
need something that makes more sense.)
Talked to my manager about the possibility of looking for DS/ML
projects at work. Apparently there’s one team he knows of that’s
looking into a project in this area, and the possibility exists to
work with them for a bit. 🤞
My father-in-law finished a prototype of our anemometer; he’s a
retired millwright, so he actually knows what he’s doing. (puts
popsicle sticks and yarn away)
A few contests entered. Closer to getting my WAS – only missing
Maine and Nebraska, and state contests for those are coming up in
the next few months.
A while back, I started having problems with the output of Venus, a
planet-like aggregator I use to read a bunch of things. The symptoms
were broken characters for things like apostrophes, quotes and so on
– which rendered the output nearly unusable. I dug into it,
but couldn’t resolve the problem…so I resorted to a bletcherous hack
(cron job to copy the file to my laptop, and view it with
file:///...) and blamed Python 2.
Today I came across the same problem but manifested in another set of
files. This time I managed to find the answer:
AddCharset UTF-8 .htm .html .js .css
To be clear, I already:
had made sure that the headers for the file included Content-Type: text/html;charset=utf-8
had made sure the html file had <meta charset="utf=8">