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Start Date 2013-08-27 00:03:27 |Comments 322 |Entries 990 |Images 4,903 |Sounds 5 |Videos 56 |Mobl 438 |

Category: house

01/11/15 10:02 - 28.ºF - ID#59742

Solar powered dream

Last summer at the Taste of Buffalo, I got a pamphlet from Solar Liberty, the solar panel installers. (e:paul) and (e:) terry and gotten an estimate from them in 2011 for an installation on the roof, but it was too expensive then.

I requested a new quote from them this month, and it's so much more in reach. The proposal they gave us has the south facing roof covered in 19 300W panels, although more could fit on the flat peak. This would be more likely to get by the preservationists. I've attached the documents comparing the two estimates, but here are the key points. (These numbers are for the smaller array, but the size could increase which would improve the numbers even more.)
  • Since 2011, the cost per watt on similarly capable panels (19% efficient) has dropped almost in half
  • subsidies have dropped from $1.75 per watt to $0.80 - and dropping
  • despite the subsidy drop the net cost to us has dropped from ~$12k to ~$5k
  • even with Basra using 2150W for heating in his 7 month wintering, we can cover 40% of our electric use. Without his environmental disaster, I have to image it'd be closer to 70-80%
  • the return on investment, even on a smaller 5kW array has dropped to 6 years, from 9-11 years
  • the 25 year savings (length of the panel warranty) would total ~$30k

We haven't decided for sure if we are doing it yet but the estimate alone gives me a huge nerd boner. It's crazy how quickly affordable renewable energy is becoming, even in a a cloudy place like Buffalo. Imagine a distributed grid powering Buffalo throughout the day and the Falls powering us at night. No one would ever have to breath in the disgusting Huntley coal fumes again.

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Permalink: Solar_powered_dream.html
Words: 304
Location: Buffalo, NY
Last Modified: 01/11/15 10:35


Category: pets

01/10/15 03:10 - 15.ºF - ID#59736

Pet shopping


(e:paul) and I went to Pet Supplies plus to get a new lightbulb for the beast. I think the only type of shopping I do like is at pet stores. Everything there is so cute - look at this shirt for dogs. Its supposed to calm them in thunderstorms.

Animals also get these delicious looking peanut butter cookies, and rodent trail mix. They remind of the yogurt snacks I used to share with my guinea pigs.

Afterwards Paul and I had a bromantic date at Taj Grill where we talked about programming and ate fried food. Yum.

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Permalink: Pet_shopping.html
Words: 103
Location: Buffalo, NY
Last Modified: 01/10/15 03:13


Category: food

01/08/15 10:32 - 14.ºF - ID#59732

Paneerwich

Cafe 59's vegetarian special today was a paneerwich - it had two amazing crispy blocks of paneer in the sandwich. I could only eat about one of them and had to take the second block home in a box.

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It was very good but I can't imagine it was much healthier than (e:paul)'s chicken finger sub.

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Permalink: Paneerwich.html
Words: 59
Location: Buffalo, NY
Last Modified: 01/09/15 03:18


Category: weather

01/08/15 10:32 - 14.ºF - ID#59731

Winter weather

It's finally cold and snowy and I've realized I like being outside a lot more now that I'm not in it for a two hour daily commute. Except for the wind, fuck the wind.

Night walks are the best. I get to let out my energy and it feels like I get all of Buffalo to myself. If only (e:terry) or (e:paul) would come with me. :(

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Permalink: Winter_weather.html
Words: 72
Location: Buffalo, NY
Last Modified: 01/09/15 03:24


Category: church of the ascencion

01/08/15 10:30 - 14.ºF - ID#59730

Tschüss Church of the Ascension

Today was the last mass at the church of the ascension next door. They went out like I knew them - parked on the lawn.

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I actually didn't mind living next to them. Free park/bocce court/drone launchpad and a nice looking building. I hope they keep that with the new senior housing.
Buffalo news story

If they build a giant parking lot on our side or in the courtyard I'm going to park a bulldozer in someone's house.

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Permalink: Tsch_ss_Church_of_the_Ascension.html
Words: 82
Location: Buffalo, NY
Last Modified: 01/09/15 03:22


Category: random

01/05/15 12:25 - 28.ºF - ID#59721

Sato's dirty mirror

We went out with (e:uchina) and (e:yesthatcasey) to Sato for some ramen. While there, Masumi noticed that the mirror was perfect for getting off some furtive glances at your dining mates' cleavage. Better watch out, Casey.


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Afterwards we finished up Mario Wii. Everyone went off to watch UFC, while (e:paul) and I programmed. I am finally almost done with the Squeaky Wheel front end.

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Permalink: Sato_s_dirty_mirror.html
Words: 70
Location: Buffalo, NY
Last Modified: 01/06/15 01:06


Category: dancing

01/04/15 12:44 - 47.ºF - ID#59717

Reanimate: New Year's Rave

New Year's we headed with (e:uchina) and (e:yesthatcasey) along with Liz to the Igloo New Year's rave. It took place in this warehouse on Adams Street, east of Jefferson. It was the kind where the location was announced the day of via a secret phone number. Apparently in the days of facebook events this is very retro.

We all got a little bit ridiculous, and so did the music. The lower level had house music and the upper had more jungle, some DnB and sadly some trap. We danced for hours - after getting there after 12, we didn't leave until almost 7 am. I did some of my best dancing ever according to (e:paul).

At one point (e:terry) and I panicked a bit because we needed to pee, but we couldn't wait in an hour line for the 5 port-a-potties. For $10 reentry, we had the privilege of peeing outside - I guess that's the going rate these days. Our night greatly improved after that. You can buy happiness.

I was so exhausted by the end. Our coats and clothes were caked with mysterious floor mud and I'm pretty sure I had black lung. But it definitely was one of the best raves I've been to yet.

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Paul in a mask - reliving his vegan power days. If only his vegan self could meet him now.

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(e:keith) tearing it up

The end of the night lead to the most awkward night of my life. Maybe I'll post about it one day. Moral of the story - if anyone ever gives you this stare, run:

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Permalink: Reanimate_New_Year_s_Rave.html
Words: 274
Location: Buffalo, NY
Last Modified: 01/04/15 01:29


Category: art

01/04/15 12:32 - 47.ºF - ID#59716

An artsy fartsy day

While (e:paul) went for a family dinner, (e:terry) and I helped Jax and the Squeaky Wheel crew move out of their old office. The result was I spent a day surrounded by artists and art.

The old location is a hoarder's paradise. Most of what we moved consisted of tons of old, broken projecters and TV's ready for the e-scrap yard. There also was the boxes upon boxes of physical media - VHS tapes. Even (e:uchina) would have found it to be vintage.
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After we dropped the waste at the scrap yard, we stopped for Breadhive's bagel brunch at Hydraulic Hearth. (e:terry) and I split a kimchi/yogurt bagel and a pepper hummus bagel. I learned that Jax loves invasive species, and this other girl Anna wants to be the mushroom foraging pioneer of Buffalo.
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The restaurant had a phonebooth art installation by Leslie Zemsky - Howard Zemsky's wife. She designed and decorated most of the restaurant.
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Afterwards, we brought the rest of the tapes and shelving to storage in the Hi-Temp Fab warehouse on Perry Street. Being in such a big old warehouse was neat. It also was covered in art.
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One gallery had a this super strange painting of a bare-chested Aunt Jemima atop a stack of pancakes. I can't decide if this was supposed to be racist or not.
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There were plenty of safety bicycles there too if you wanted to take a spin. i think artists may just be hoarders.

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Afterwards we went for a hot toddy at Jax and Kyle's place. Spiced whiskey is a little much for me. But we got to show off the Samsung VR Goggles and compare them to VR art on the Oculus Rift VR1. The Samsung headset is so much better to look at. The field of view and resolution is a million times more advanced.
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We got to sample these legendary macaroons from a hospital in Massachusetts

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The last artsty thing we did before walking home was visiting Julian Montegue's bird photo exhibition. Normally I think his drawings are cool, but honestly, I didn't get this. It was blurry pictures of birds in Buffalo, like my mobl post quality.

I was ready to go home and work on the new Squeaky website at this point.
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Permalink: An_artsy_fartsy_day.html
Words: 391
Location: Buffalo, NY
Last Modified: 01/04/15 01:56


Category: family

01/03/15 09:48 - 39.ºF - ID#59715

New Years Eve dinner

We had a great New Year's eve dinner at mama Visco's house, with (e:mike) and (e:libertad). She made all the delicious things - the dandelion patties, the mushroom and artichoke dish, apfelkuchen. We even tried 45 year old wine that Paul's dad brought out of the basement. It had some kick to it.

The best part of the evening I think was hearing about Mike's Staples fiasco. He needs to do a full write up because I can't do it justice.

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Permalink: New_Years_Eve_dinner.html
Words: 85
Location: Buffalo, NY
Last Modified: 01/03/15 09:51


Category: linux

12/29/14 01:09 - ID#59699 pmobl

Docker


I've been working on the redeveloping the Squeaky Wheel website and coming up with a brand new member management and equipment app for them. Most of the project is not that interesting but I have learned something new - Docker.

Basically there are containers that use parts of the host machines kernel, that then combines them with other services you want to run isolated from the rest of the machine. You can build images of different configurations and version control them with git. Everything configuration can be described by docker files. Its basically a more lightweight and flexible virtual machine. I felt behind for not having used this before but it's pretty awesome.

In my set up, I wanted to have a virtual machine running the member app, and a front end running WordPress. (e:Paul) didn't want to use two IPs and I don't want to run a frequently exploited app like WordPress on the host, so docker was a good solution to isolate it.

In the end I based an container off of a prebuilt CentOS image, with PHP, MySQL and Apache installed and went through the configuration. I could pull the MySQL data store out into its own persistant data container by running
docker run -v  /etc/mysql centos mysql-data
. This lets the data be reused across multiple containers.

Next I set up a WordPress directory on the host VM, so that I could version control changes with git. After this, the WordPress container can be spun up by mounting the data container and mapping with MySQL, mapping the host wordpress directory into the Apache's root document folder and forwarding another port on the host machine to port 80 and 443 to the container. I will post the command once I'm on the computer.

All I needed to do after that was set a VirtualHost proxy to the container. The best part after this was how easy it was to spin up a second Dev environment for someone else - I just cloned the Wordprsss directory and ran the command another time with a different port and name.

Now that I have done this I think spinning up apps will be so much easier. Maybe I can pick start doing more server admin work like Paul.

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Permalink: Docker.html
Words: 377
Location: Buffalo, NY
Last Modified: 12/29/14 01:09


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